Archive for February, 2014

God Keeps Telling Me: ‘Trust Me’ (Especially When Things Aren’t Going The Way You Think They Should)

February 13, 2014

When God tries to get your attention, He has a way of making Himself heard.

I have recently gone through a few experiences in which God has beamed it into my brain that He is trustworthy and that I need to turn over my circumstances – and even harder yet my expectations – to Him.

And what can I say?  Sometimes I’m something of a slow learner.

I related my story involving my ruptured biceps tendon and the surgery that I (finally!) had to reattach it.  And how God inserted Himself into the story at certain key moments before finally, gloriously coming through beyond anything I had been hoping for.  I say that last because I had heard the attending surgeon tell me that it was too late to do the surgery and that the way I damaged my tendon – the MRI indicated that it had been torn strand by strand by strand – made the outcome questionable at best from the outset.  He had compared my tendon to spaghetti that had been left out too long.  And on top of that, over time a tendon will shorten and contract and slip down the arm making it difficult if not impossible for a surgeon to find as he literally slices his way down the arm looking for the ruptured end.

In my mind, if this tendon could even BE reattached, I had already counted it a miracle.

And so, imagine my joy and surprise when I woke up from surgery to hear the surgeon tell me that he couldn’t explain it, had never heard about it happening before, but somehow my tendon had become caught or hung-up on the bone.  And as a result of that “coincidence” my tendon had NOT shortened and they did NOT have to slice down my arm to find it.  It was right where it was supposed to be, such that the minimum three-inch incision they told me I’d have is half that long and the two-hour surgery that was scheduled took 45 minutes.  And surprised a surgeon.  And somehow, that tendon that the attending surgeon said was probably inoperable was in good shape.

In my write-up, I pointed out my belief that if we could just know how things would turn out in the end, we wouldn’t mind going through the “adventure” of a difficult process.  But instead of trusting that everything will work out, we become fearful.  And get bogged down in complaining about every unpleasant new development.

Well, I had another such experience with God last night.  And I didn’t even have to go through surgery this time to receive my lesson.  Which you have to agree is an improvement.

As a result of the reattachment surgery, riding a heavy cruiser motorcycle is a bad idea.  I’m not supposed to be lifting anything for a while, and pushing and pulling on those handlebars is a definite no-no for a while.  When I asked the surgeon how long before I could ride my bike again, he said, “I can’t tell you.  I’ve never been asked that question before.”  He’ll get back to me on that one.

So I dusted off my old car that I have kept as a stand-by and got it running again.

“It” is a giant Pontiac 4-door luxury car from the early 1970s with a giant 455 cubic inch engine that is blissfully unaware whether it is going uphill or downhill.

I’m a motorcycle guy through and through.  So I like to have a nice bike – and a car for when “a nice bike” won’t due (such as when I need to bring home lumber or something that my saddlebags just won’t handle).  The last time I drove the car I’d taken my dog to the vet for her shots.  And for the record it’s getting close to time to get her shots again.

Well, anyway, the fuel gauge float got stuck in the gas tank, and when I put gas in, it started working again – but we don’t really know how reliable it is yet.  And you know how fuel gauges are in general: no two are alike.  So I really didn’t know my fuel situation.  I knew I was low on gas, but based on my looking over how much I’d put in the tank versus how many miles the odometer recorded, I figured I should have had enough to get around for a little while.

Or not.

I went to my gym last night, and was among the last people to leave when it closed at 10 p.m.  The janitor admired my car for several minutes – it’s a “cherry” with only 62,000 total/original miles – and we chatted about the old car and old cars in general for a little while.

When I started her up, she seemed fine.  But when I put her in gear, she kind of hesitated in a way that told me something wasn’t right.  But I didn’t connect the dots.

It turned out that I was so low on gas that even had I driven straight to the closest gas station, I would have run empty.  And it’s probably for the best, as I would have run out of gas on the main drag at night.  But as it was, instead of trying to make the gas station, oblivious me turned the other way to go home.

The car sputtered and stalled as I was in the left lane of a two-lane road.  I started her up again and she had JUST enough gas to make it to the curb before dying for good.

Continuing in “oblivious” mode, I tried to crank her over a couple of times.  No dice.  Fortunately I ended up RIGHT under a nice bright street light.  Which in my bankrupt city is actually sort of a miracle in and of itself.

Now I realize I’m in a little bit of trouble.  Because all I had was my driver’s license.  No phone.  No money.

I need gas, but I’ve got no way to call and no way to pay for it.

What else could I do but get out the gas can and start walking toward the closest gas station?  I was hoping I could persuade the gas station to keep my I.D. in exchange for a couple of gallons until I could come back with money.

But as it turned out I ran into ONE guy.  And I recognized him from my gym.  I didn’t know him, but what the heck: I asked him if he had five dollars I could borrow until Friday.

I got the sense that this guy was dirt poor, and that five dollars was a significant sum of money.  But he looked at me – holding my gas can and probably wearing an extra-pathetic look on my face – and he handed me a five dollar bill.

Thank God.  That’s one hurdle leaped over.

It was probably a mile walk to the gas station.  Which meant a mile walk back.  I looked at the receipt for my gas and noticed it was quarter to eleven as I started back.

It occurred to me that I might need to prime the carburetor.  So I was on the lookout for some kind of container that would hold gasoline as opposed to typical plastic that would have dissolved had I poured gas into it.  I didn’t find anything on the way, but as I was walking I noticed one of those little alcohol bottles that they serve on airplanes.  I picked it up.  It was glass.

Thank God.  Another hurdle crossed.  Maybe pathetically crawled over, but cleared.

Putting gas in my tank is never a joyful experience.  Because some brilliant engineer had decided that it would be really smart to put the gas filler tube behind the license plate underneath the rear bumper.  Even when you’re using the fuel hose at the gas station, gassing up is akin to a giraffe trying to drink water from a lake.  It is just AWKWARD.

Was the tube on my gas can long enough to reach into the filler tube?  Don’t be silly.  Of COURSE it wasn’t.

I rummaged through the trunk, saying my prayers.  I found a funnel that was JUST BARELY long enough to allow me to pour the gas into the tank’s filler tube.

It was particularly awkward as I had one functioning arm.  Remember, I just had surgery a little over a week ago and I was told in no uncertain terms DON’T DO ANYTHING STUPID.  In fact, just don’t do anything with that arm for a while.

But I got the gas in.

Another hurdle less than gracefully leaped over.

I saved a little bit of gas at the end to put in my glass container that had been tossed by some wino who had unknowingly served as an agent of divine provision.  I was really hoping I wouldn’t need it.  If I had to prime that carb, it meant lifting my hood.  And the hood on that car weighs, well, probably more than your whole CAR does.  The thing is metal and it is massive.

I tried repeatedly to start the car, trying to let it turn over long enough to let the mechanical fuel pump do it’s job but not so long that I flood it.

It was a precarious balance.  And I erred on the side of flooding.

One of my problems at this point was the fact that – in addition to not having a phone or money – I didn’t have a watch.  I had no idea how to gauge how long between trying to turn the car over and how long was long enough to wait before trying to turn it over again.

Anyway.  I couldn’t get it started.  I realized I would have to prime the carburetor.

It is at this point in the story where I might relate that I have a rather badly torn rotator cuff in the arm that I DIDN’T have surgery on.  I was supposed to have surgery on that arm first, but Mr. Biceps Tendon decided to declare independence and that meant having surgery on that arm instead.  Anyway, suffice it to say it was something of a challenge to get that hood open.

Another hurdle.  Clearing them more and more feebly, but getting over them.

Well, there was a couple of ounces of gas.  I tried to use as little as possible in that giant 4-barrel, with the thought that I might have to try this trick a couple of times.

And sure enough, the first time it didn’t catch, the second time it almost started, the third time it started but immediately died.

And I was down to less than an ounce of gas.  One last attempt.

Now, don’t think that I hadn’t already been praying.  But I was down to one last prayer here.

I should probably tell you at this point that situations like this don’t tend to bring out the best in me.  In fact, if I had to have my life broadcast on a big screen for all my friends and family to see, this type of situation would have been like second from the very bottom on my list of “please don’t let anyone see that” moments.  If I’m not shouting or screaming in frustration, well, I’m whining in a high-pitched voice that would be beyond embarrassing if it were coming out of the mouth of a little girl, let alone a grown man.

But I never did that last night.  I took the steps I needed to take, and just kept praying and hoping for the best.

So here I was, down to my last half ounce of gas and my last attempt to start the car before walking three miles home through the desert in the dark.  And I said to the Lord, “If you want me to walk home, I will walk home.  If you want that car to start, it will start.  It is up to You, Lord.  You are in control here.  And I will be more joyful if I’m driving home, but if I have to walk home, I will be open to whatever you have for me as I walk home.”

And I turned the key for the last time.

And the engine roared to life as if it had never been hibernating for the past hour while I tried desperately to start it.

I replaced the air box lid and shut the giant hood and climbed back into the car and drove home.

And the thing that occurred to me was how JOYFUL I was.

God had delivered me.  Oh, He had taught me a lesson in patience.  He had taught me a lesson in trusting Him beyond my circumstances.  But here I was driving home.

I realized something: let’s say the “ideal” happened and I’d made it home to begin with.  I would have got home two hours earlier, true.  But I wouldn’t have been able to experience the joy of that engine coming to life after all the seemingly futile effort and all the seemingly crushed hope.

I realized it’s worth going through a hard time just to watch God come through for you.  Because I was JOYFUL that I was driving home in the dark rather than walking on my very bad knees.

I know as I write this that an atheist would compare my prayers and my thanking God for the car starting to my rubbing a rabbit’s foot and attributing my success to my lucky charm.

I also know that if you’re inclined to see God, you can find Him EVERYWHERE.  And if you’re not, you won’t find Him anywhere.

And I know that I wouldn’t trade my joy that some how, in some way, the Creator of the entire universe was looking down upon me, and teaching me, and caring for me, and ultimately delivering me, for ANYTHING.

And so I say what I said last night as I was driving home, thinking about how a guy with no money and no phone and a two bad arms and two bad knees managed to make it home: thank you, Lord.

God is trying to tell me that I need to trust Him regardless of my circumstances and just count on Him in spite of anything that happens.  And I had this thought: I considered the child whose parents never made time for him, for whom even negative attention is better than no attention at all.  And I thank my God for giving me His attention – even if it DOES come down to a long walk home in the dark.

Hopefully, the next time I go through a trial – and I WILL go through another trial – I will remember how this one turned out.

Ultimately, I’m gong to be with my Lord Jesus in heaven.  What on earth should I be complaining about when I’ve got that kind of eternal future in store for me???

 

 

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Trayvon Martin, Racism, The Stand Your Ground Law And Michael Dunn. No Comparison Whatsoever.

February 12, 2014

One can do a search on my blog and see how vigorously I defended George Zimmerman’s right to defend himself against Trayvon Martin.

I was of course called a “racist” by the incredibly racist left for doing so, as someone reading the comments can see.

George Zimmerman was physically attacked.  Only the most rabid ideologue fool refuses to acknowledge that Zimmerman was on his back getting beaten with Trayvon Martin on top of him “MMA style” raining down blows on a man who had already suffered a broken nose and serious abrasions to the back of his skull.

Liberals are fascists who do not want ordinary people to possess the right or capability to defend themselves.  Period.  On top of that, liberals are racist race-baiters who demonize white people and who have no compunction whatsoever to alter reality to make themselves victims.  Thus George Zimmerman became a “white Hispanic” to eradicate the fact that he himself is a racial minority.  And Trayvon Martin became an innocent ten-year old in the news accounts rather than a 6’3″ thug who already had had numerous encounters with the law and who by his own accounts was already glorifying in violence.

The case was a “no-brainer” from the outset.  And liberals proved that they are brainless ideologues who refuse to accept the real world in their steadfast determination that George Zimmerman be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law for daring to defend himself rather than placing all his trust that Obama and the State would defend him.  The ONLY reason the case even ever went to trial was because Democrats are rabid fascists.

The Michael Dunn case is entirely different.  And pathologically rabid liberals might be surprised to learn that I am very firmly on the side of the car-full of black kids who got shot rather than on the white man who shot them.

Michael Dunn, unlike Zimmerman’s defense, is citing the “Stand Your Ground Law.”  Again, pathologically dishonest Democrats made the Zimmerman case all about that “Stand Your Ground” law even though Zimmerman’s defense NEVER cited it.  And the reason that Democrats hate that law so much is that, again, they are fascists whose demons inhabiting them start twitching hysterically the moment an ordinary person is deemed to have the right to stand in any way, shape or form or to protect himself in any way, shape or form.  And that is especially true – in the Democrat age of “Never bring a lawsuit against a black” – when race is involved.

George Zimmerman is Hispanic.  Not a “white Hispanic” as the racist, bigoted, socialist and frankly evil New York Times branded him.  Either acknowledge that Zimmerman is Hispanic, you jackals, or for the sake of any kind of honesty whatsoever STOP CALLING OBAMA AN AFRICAN-AMERICAN PRESIDENT WHEN HE IS ONLY HALF AFRICAN-AMERICAN.  But the fact of the matter is that Democrats are hypocrites without any kind of shame, honor, decency, integrity or virtue whatsoever.  So Obama gets to be the first black president and anybody who doesn’t like Obama’s policies is a “racist” by definition while Zimmerman becomes a “white Hispanic” with the sole emphasis on his being “white” and therefore guilty.

But let’s get back to Michael Dunn.

Here’s the basic account of what happened:

Mr. Dunn, a middle-aged white man, allegedly opened fire on a car with four black teenagers in it at a Jacksonville, Fla., gas station. The boys were apparently blasting music, and when Dunn asked them to turn it down, they responded angrily. Dunn has said he felt threatened and thought he saw someone point a gun at him through the back window, so he opened fire. No gun was found in the boys’ car, and none of the witnesses to the altercation noticed a gun.

Here’s another:

The day after last Thanksgiving, Dunn was in good spirits when he attended his son’s wedding at a historic home overlooking the St. Johns River in Orange Park, a quaint Jacksonville suburb.

But after the wedding, Dunn got into a parking lot dispute with teenagers at a gas station that ended with a 17-year-old dead and Dunn charged with murder.

Police portray the South Patrick Shores resident as an out-of-control gunman who became enraged over loud rap music booming from a nearby car, grabbed a 9mm pistol from his glovebox and fired two volleys into a Dodge Durango containing four black teens. The gunshots killed Jordan Davis and narrowly missed two other boys.

Dunn told detectives he acted in self-defense after he heard threats and thought he saw Davis raise the barrel of a shotgun above the SUV’s rear passenger window. No gun was found, police said.

Here’s the thing that makes Michael Dunn guilty:

Asked by detectives why he didn’t report the shooting by calling 911, he said he planned to drive Rouer home to Brevard County in the morning, then confess to authorities.

By 4:25 a.m. the next morning, Jacksonville police had obtained an arrest warrant and contacted the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office, looking for Dunn. A witness at the gas station had reported his license tag number.

He was arrested by deputies at about 10:30 a.m. at his condo, then taken to police headquarters in Viera for a videotaped interview with two Jacksonville detectives.

Wearing a yellow short-sleeved collared shirt and striped shorts, fidgeting and wiping his hands on his knees, Dunn related his side of the story – but neither detective bought his version of events.

Rather, they said details of Dunn’s story didn’t match those at the crime scene. Neither the surviving boys nor independent witnesses at the gas station said Davis had a firearm or tried to exit the SUV – in fact, one of the boys later said Davis couldn’t have exited a rear door because the child locks were engaged.

“If there was a shotgun coming up at you, we would expect you to do what you did. The problem that we have is, there is no shotgun. That’s the bridge that we’ve got to get across,” a detective told Dunn.

“You keep dwelling on this shotgun as if there’s one at the scene. If there was a shotgun, a BB gun, any type of gun at the scene – hell, if there was a water gun that was black that looked real at the scene. …” the detective said.

This case is NOT about race, any more than the George Zimmerman case was ever about race.

Democrats pathologically despise the Constitution or the United States and our founding fathers, unless and until these great men are perverted into deists and atheists in radical abandonment of actual history and unless and until their words are “fundamentally transformed” by liberal judges into a grotesque mockery of anything they ever actually intended their words to mean.  And the words that Democrats hate only slightly less are Martin Luther King, Jr.’s words from his “I have a dream” speech:

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

Democrats hate those words.  They hate the idea that the content of one’s character should matter.  They want it to be exclusively about the color of one’s skin.  And if you are black, you are by definition a “victim” and if you are white, you are by definition a “racist” and a “bigot” and “privileged” and therefore guilty of whatever crime Democrats want to scapegoat you with.

I think of the character in the great movie, “The Ten Commandments” named Nathan.  Because he is the epitome of the Democrat Party.  Like Nathan, DEMOCRATS are the real party of slavery.  Democrats literally fought the damned Civil War to keep slavery while Republicans fought to liberate the slaves.  The Ku Klux Klan that rode like a living cancer after that Democrat War constituted the terrorist arm of the Democrat Party who persecuted blacks and white Republicans while their fellow Democrats undid everything Republican president Abraham Lincoln tried to do in his Reconstruction Act.

I’ve documented this before, so I’ll quote myself.  Who are Democrats?

The Democrat Party under Woodrow Wilson actually RE-segregated the US Military and government service (after Republicans had de-segregated them and allowed blacks to serve).  The Democrat Party in 1924 was SO completely dominated by the Ku Klux Klan that the Democrat National Convention was called “Klanbake.”    The Democrat Party under FDR and their New Deal was rife with racism and unions and Democrats used it to prevent blacks from getting jobs.  The Democrat Party continued to be THE Party of hard-core racism for the entire history of the republic.  The racist horror story of “Mississippi Burning“ was OWNED by Democrats from the Governor right on down.  In fact, the state Democrat Party in Mississippi was limited to whites only.  And the fact is that a FAR higher percentage of Republican Congressmen and Senators voted for the 1964 Civil Rights Act than Democrats.  Democrats were the Party of keeping the black man down until they cynically – incredibly cynically – saw that there was another way to keep exploiting black people to keep them on their plantation and keep them down.

The cry of Democrat blacks today is “Give us welfare or give us death.”  But the two amount to the same thing as blacks have given in to bitterness, hopelessness and a spirit of entitlement rather than trying to actually fulfill the American Dream for themselves.  You can either wait for your damn check to come off the work of other people or you can go out and work your ass off to make your world and your kid’s world a better place.  And because of the Democrat Party, blacks have pursued the former and abandoned the latter.  These are people who have fallen prey to the belief that whitey is out to get them and there isn’t any hope of a fair deal – so why try?  And the only reason that is true is the same Democrat Party who told them that are the very same white people who have actually been the ones keeping them down with promises of welfare for nothing forever.

Or read my slightly different account here about who the Democrats are:

We know that FDR was a racist bigot who detested black people and allowed labor unions to exclude blacks from work that they desperately needed to survive the darkest days of America.

The question as to why black people have in recent years chosen to celebrate and support the party that put their ancestors in the chains of slavery, fought a vicious Civil War to keep them in those chains, invented the Ku Klux Klan as the terrorist arm of the Democrat Party to keep blacks who had been freed by Republicans in subjugation, resegregated blacks under the tyranny of “the father of the modern progressive movement” also known as the racist white supremacist Woodrow Wilson, was still so racist in 1924 that the Democratic National Convention of that year was called “Klanbake,” allowed black men to go untreated with syphilis so researchers could study the progression of the disease (the Tuskegee Experiment) throughout the entire FDR presidency, was largely THE party of racist discrimination through the 1950s, and then only passed the Civil Rights laws with the overwhelming supporting votes of Republicans, is a mystery that I will not attempt to explain.  I have no idea why black people as a culture allowed Democrats who had subjected them to one form of plantation allowed Democrats to bait and switch them into a different form of plantation (the welfare plantation of institutional generational dependency).

Or for more modern facts, read my account here about who Democrats are:

Now, of course, you run into the irony that it was that Grand Old Party that freed the slaves, and fought a bitter war to free the slaves against the Democrat Party that was fighting just as bitterly to keep black people in the chains of human bondage.  But that’s beside the point in the Democrat narrative.

Harry Reid is also on the record admiring Obama as a:

‘light-skinned’ African American ‘with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one.’

Maybe it’s because Obama was half white, but Harry Reid nevertheless praises Obama for overcoming that stupid negro dialect.  And being light-skinned is a huge bonus for Harry Reid.  “Whiter is better” when you’re in the party of “the White Man’s Burden.”

Bill Clinton wasn’t quite as happy with the man who was stealing his white wife’s rightful place as leader of the free world.

Bill snidely told Ted Kennedy,

A  few years ago, this guy would have been getting us coffee.”

I know, William Jefferson.  That’s back when southern Democrats like you had a different way of keeping black boys in their proper place.

Senator Robert Byrd, a distinguished “Exalted Cyclops” and “Kleagle” of the famous Democrat-created Ku Klux Klan, was on the record as once saying:

“I  shall never fight in the armed forces with a Negro by  my side …   Rather I should die a thousand times, and see Old Glory  trampled in the   dirt never to rise again, than to see this beloved  land of ours become   degraded by race mongrels, a throwback to the  blackest specimen from  the  wilds.”

Ah.  There’s that depiction of blacks as being in that long-way-from-being-human I earlier mentioned.

And:

“The Klan is needed  today as never before and I am  anxious to see its  rebirth here in West  Virginia and in every state in  the nation.”

When Bill Clinton honored fellow Democrat Robert “Exalted Cyclops” Byrd, Clinton said:

“He  was a country boy from the hills and hollows of West Virginia. He  was  trying to get elected. And maybe he did something he shouldn’t have   done…”

Well, as long as he was just a Democrat trying to get elected, then ANY racism or racism is fine, isn’t it, Hill Billy?

And you can read here for the massive, hypocrite double-standard that Democrats lived by when it comes to “race.”

Liberals are liars and haters.  And worst of all, they are true moral idiots.  “Democrat” stands for “Demonic Bureaucrat” as they seek to advance two interests: Satan’s love for 55 million murdered human beings in the abortion mills and the worship of homosexual sodomy, plus their determination to replace the God of the Bible with “the State” and make GOVERNMENT our God and Savior while increasingly marginalizing and even criminalizing the worship of Jesus Christ and the God of the Bible.

So what’s this Michael Dunn case about?  I already stated it above.  It is about a guilty man – and I don’t frankly give a damn WHAT color he is – who fired ten shots into a vehicle with kids inside and claimed he was being threatened with a gun when nothing even remotely resembling a gun was found at the scene.

It’s about this question: do you have the right to stand your ground with a gun?  You’re damn right you do – and again, I don’t CARE if you are white or black or Hispanic or Asian or whatever.  Do you have a right to whip out a gun after confronting somebody and then start shooting at them when they are no real threat to you?  You’re damned right you don’t.

Michael Dunn ought to be convicted for his crime of shooting at those kids and for murdering one named Jordan Davis.  And if Michael Dunn were black and the kids were white, he should be every bit as convicted.

And I say that as a conservative and a Republican rather than a racist liberal Democrat.

 

Beautiful Lyrics: Hope Has Hands

February 11, 2014

I had some of these lyrics read to me as poetry and discovered a beautiful song about the Lord Jesus:

Hope Has Hands by the Hoppers

In search of a child they travel so far
Led by a star to a place of joy
Now the wise men tell a beautiful story
Describing the glory of a baby boy

Hope has hands
Freedom has feet
Truth will stand
The Word will speak
The holy and lowly will finally embrace
For love has a heartbeat
And grace has a face

Compassion has a tear
Joy has a laughter
And here ever after peace has a smile
Redemption’s blood has veins to flow in
A temple to glow in
Light is a child

Hope has hands
Freedom has feet
Truth will stand
the world will sleep
The holy and lowly will finally embrace
For love has a heartbeat
And grace has a face

The holy and lowly will finally embrace
For love has a heartbeat
Love has a heartbeat
And grace has a face
Amen.  Grace has a face.  And that face belongs to Jesus.

One of the things that often occurs to me is the beauty of Christianity.  Hymns that glorify Christ and “Christ figure” themes that dominate music and literature abound.  Where, in miserable contrast, is the great music celebrating the wondrous joy of atheism?

How To Trust God

February 7, 2014

I just had surgery to reattach a ruptured biceps tendon.  It’s been a difficult time from that first “Dang, that hurt!” moment.  But I’ve learned a lot through this (in addition to being able to answer questions like, “Do you have any idea how hard it is to put your socks on with one hand?”).

I’ve had an audience with God in this.  That’s about the only way I can put it at this point.  And I didn’t even have to endure all that Job did to have that audience.

I’ve been on a real emotional roller coaster ride since the day I busted this tendon.  I remember the pain and the shock and the fear when I felt it tear.  I remember the anxiety when it seemed like my doctors were going to deny me the reattachment surgery (they told me things like, “Brett Favre ruptured his biceps tendon and he didn’t have it reattached – and he’s a professional athlete,” and “In Europe they don’t even do that surgery any more”).  I remember how frustrated I was over all the dithering and all the delays I experienced trying to get myself fixed.  And I remember the worry over the prospect that they may have waited too long and the tendon wasn’t repairable (a concern that the surgeon also had).

None of those memories is very positive, of course.

But I also remember my washer story.  In short, after getting some good advice from a doctor friend and making an appointment with the doctor who would be my surgeon, I was consumed with making my case to him about why I needed to have this surgery that his boss the attending surgeon had pooh-poohed and argued couldn’t be done at this point.  A lost washer from a ruptured cane tip that God helped me find in five miles of desert the day before that appointment got my attention long enough for God to tell me: “I’m in control here.  And the fact that I care about your stupid washer ought to tell you that I care about what the most important things in your life.  And if I want you to have your tendon repaired, it will be repaired; it’s not up to any bureaucrats or even any doctors.  I’m the one you need to trust.”

I was able to trust God the next day when I went to my appointment with the surgeon with the peace of Christ rather than all the concerns I’d been having.  But I was still amazed how easy that appointment turned out to be, as the surgeon said, “If you want me to try to reattach that tendon, I’ll try to do it.  I can’t make any promises about whether the surgery will be successful, but we’ll try.”  After several months of feeling like I’d been banging my head against the wall trying to get that surgery, the day after I found my washer I was finally hearing the words I wanted to hear hopefully just short of too late.

I was – after a lot of wrestling with it – able to trust God with the outcome of the surgery when I compared the various outcomes: during the four months since I’d ruptured the tendon, most of my strength had returned, and if the surgery were unsuccessful, I was told the recovery would be very rapid and I’d be back to my normal routine in no time.  On the one hand.  But on the other hand, I obviously didn’t want to have surgery if that surgery was going to be unsuccessful.  I wanted that tendon attached.  But the recovery will take a minimum of three months of very slow healing due to the fact that tendons get so little blood supply and tendons don’t just anchor themselves back to bones without a lot of time and a lot of pain and rehab.  I finally decided that I wanted to do what was wisest for the long-term, rather than be distracted by the short-term.  And I would have the surgery and put my trust in God, and if it wasn’t successful I would know that I’d at least tried versus realizing ten years from now that I wish I’d had that surgery and regretting that I hadn’t.

I had a similar moment of realization a month ago when I realized I had no idea whether I should zig or whether I should zag.  And I was able to just turn it over to the Lord out of sheer realization that I had no way of knowing what would be best for me.  A lot more of live is like that than we think – and it’s when we THINK we know what is best that we’re usually the most dangerous.

So that was the second thing I learned.  Realize that God is the Creator of the Universe and has a far greater plan than you do.  We think we know what’s best for us, but we simply don’t.  for example, if you don’t get fired from that lousy job you were so afraid to lose, how would you have ended up getting that far better and more satisfying job?  You were SURE losing that job would be the worst thing that could possibly happen to you; but it was the BEST thing.  Or if you don’t lose that lousy, good for nothing boyfriend or girlfriend that you try so hard to please, how will you end up meeting that perfect man or woman that God has for you?  We just don’t know what’s best for us.  And the best thing for us is to trust a God who loves us and knows the end from the beginning.

Well, not long after I finally realized that my best plan was to let God do the planning and turn it over to Him, I had the surgery.  And the surgery was successful.  My parents drove me to the hospital and were the first to hear the doctor’s report after my surgery.  And when I was in the recovery room I heard the report, too.  The surgeon was very pleasantly surprised by something that he’d never heard of having happened: somehow my tendon had been hung-up or caught on the bone and even though it was ruptured it had not slipped down my arm the way busted biceps tendons tend to do.  And while sometimes tendons that have ruptured are simply too damaged – literally in a spaghetti-like state – to be able to reattach to the bone, mine was still in pretty good shape  in spite of the injury and in spite of the months that had gone by since I’d ruptured it.  The surgeon was able to do a good, solid repair right where he wanted to do it, rather than having the choices limited by the location and condition of my tendon.  And he literally finished in less than half the time he thought the surgery would take, because that tendon getting hung-up on the bone like that made it so easy for him.

That tendon getting hung-up on the bone was no fortunate accident; it was the result of a God who was letting me know that He is there and I can trust Him with everything I am and everything I have.

Well, anyway, I was thinking about the idea of praising God for all things, whether seemingly good things or even seemingly bad things, and of course I started out by manifesting the wrong attitude.

I thought, “Lord, if this surgery and all I’m going to have to go through end up being successful, I’ll be able to thank you for everything.  The surgery was successful, but I’ve got to NOT MESS MYSELF UP while the tendon slowly reattaches itself to the bone over and above the surgical repair.  And if I can get back to normal, yes, I’ll be grateful for the whole process.  Even the pain and BOY DOES IT HURT sometimes.  Even the fact that I would give ANYTHING to be able to take my arm out of this stupid sling and just STRETCH it.  Even though I can hardly put my socks on and I can hardly brush my teeth wrong-handed and all the rest of the frustrating things that you find out you can’t do when you’re down to your non-dominant arm/hand to do them.  I’ll be thankful for it all because it was all part of the process of getting to where I needed to be and I had to go through all of this to get there.

And that’s what life amounts to: trusting God that somehow you’ll end up all right, no matter what happens that seems to be really bad at the time.

There’s the Omnipotent, Omniscient, Omnipresent, Omnibenevolent Creator of the space-time universe over there, and there’s little tiny me over here.  And which one do I trust has the better plan???  Particularly given the fact that my entire life has been one long lesson in my propensity to screw things up???

A couple of famous Bible verses come to mind.

There’s Romans 8:28, which says:

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

What is “the good”?  How often have I THOUGHT something was best but been wrong.  I didn’t have all the facts, I didn’t know all the angles, I didn’t have the right perspective.  But my all-knowing God is never blindsided by unexpected developments.  He always knows all the angles and He’s ALWAYS got the right perspective.  And He knows that we often just have to go through unpleasant things that seem painful or hard for us because we need to go through those things to get where we most need to be when we need to be there.

We can trust Him.

But there’s also 1 Peter 5:7, which assures me:

Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

This is the same God who created us in His image so that one day He could assume our image and live a perfectly life so that He could take the blame and literally be tortured and murdered so that He could die in our place and take the penalty that we deserved.

Yeah.  He cares.

My whole life as I look up at the stars at night is the same thing that I’m thinking about in the aftermath of this surgery: as long as it all works out in the end, I can be thankful for everything that happened along the way.

I don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow.  But that doesn’t matter.  Because I DO know that it will work out.  I DO know that ultimately everything will be okay.  I DO know that in a million years, a billion, a trillion, I’ll be with my God in heaven and everything I went through on this earth will seem very, very small.

There are things going on in my own life, and in the lives of friends who are very dear to me, that I can’t explain and don’t understand and don’t want.  But we’re each of us in God’s hands and God has a plan and unlike me He knows what He’s doing.

A lot of people resent the idea of a sovereign, omnipotent God who is in control over all things.  Because if God is in control over even the smallest things in life, YOU ARE NOT IN CONTROL.  And a lot of people simply cannot handle a God who precludes their being able to take credit for how wonderful they think they are and how successful they think they have been.  If you are LeBron James, you didn’t create the body you would be born with, and if you are Bill Gates, you didn’t create your mind that you would be born with.  God did.  And in the same way neither were you responsible for putting most of the fortuitous circumstances into your life that enabled you to be what you are today, for better or for worse.  God is.

So that’s my third lesson in all of this.

For most of us, life seems to come at us randomly.  Good things happen, bad things happen.  And we just muddle through.

God wants us to be able to look past the drudge and past the pain and past the seeming randomness and see Him.

And it really is true what Jesus said, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” (Luke 11:9).  When you look for God, He has a way of making sure that you find Him.  You’ll be able to see Him everywhere, even in the smallest details.  When you don’t look for God, you won’t be able to see Him even when He makes Himself obvious.  It is as if when you deny the reality of God, you become a cartoon character and live in a two-dimensional world when there is really so much more depth that you refuse to see.  And in the same way, when you trust God, He has a way of making Himself trustworthy, whereas when you keep holding on to yourself and what you can do to change your world for yourself, you will somehow never be able to find a trustworthy God.

Trust comes down to the simple realization that God knows best and He’s able to make things happen in a way that you’re not able to make things happen.  And it comes down to casting your anxiety upon Him, because you know He cares for you.

I of course STILL don’t know whether this surgery will ultimately result in a successful outcome.  I could tear the tendon loose five minutes from now as the result of a fall or some accident, or it could heal to be every bit as stable as it was before I hurt it.  That’s what we call “the uncertainties of life.”  And we tend to fixate on all the uncertainties rather than THE certainty that there is a God at work working all things together for the good for those of us who have placed our trust in Him.  There’s no uncertainty at ALL about our eternal future, and all we’re dealing with down here is rocks on the path to a great eternal destination.

So here’s to being thankful to God and trusting Him.

Life At The Most Respected Liberal Newspaper (Read, Worst And Most Biased Piece Of Garbage) In The Country

February 5, 2014

I found this piece about life at the insufferable New York Times rather a fun read:

The Tyranny and Lethargy of the Times Editorial Page
Reporters in ‘semi-open revolt’ against Andrew Rosenthal
By Ken Kurson 2/04 3:38pm

Illustration by Torren Thomas.

Illustration by Torren Thomas.

IT’S WELL KNOWN AMONG THE SMALL WORLD of people who pay attention to such things that the liberal-leaning reporters at The Wall Street Journal resent the conservative-leaning editorial page of The Wall Street Journal. What’s less well known—and about to break into the open, threatening the very fabric of the institution—is how deeply the liberal-leaning reporters at The New York Times resent the liberal-leaning editorial page of The New York Times.

The New York Observer has learned over the course of interviews with more than two-dozen current and former Times staffers that the situation has “reached the boiling point” in the words of one current Times reporter. Only two people interviewed for this story agreed to be identified, given the fears of retaliation by someone they criticize as petty and vindictive.

The blame here, in the eyes of most Times reporters to whom The Observer spoke, belongs to Andrew Rosenthal, who as editorial page editor leads both the paper’s opinion pages and opinion postings online, as well as overseeing the editorial board and the letters, columnists and op-ed departments. Mr. Rosenthal is accused of both tyranny and pettiness, by the majority of the Times staffers interviewed for this story. And the growing dissatisfaction with Mr. Rosenthal stems from a commitment to excellence that has lifted the rest of the Times, which is viewed by every staffer The Observer spoke to as rapidly and dramatically improving.

“He runs the show and is lazy as all get-out,” says a current Times writer, and one can almost hear the Times-ness in his controlled anger (who but a Timesman uses the phrase “as all get-out” these days?). Laziness and bossiness are unattractive qualities in any superior, but they seem particularly galling at a time when the Times continues to pare valued staffers via unending buyouts.

The Times declined to provide exact staffing numbers, but that too is a source of resentment. Said one staffer, “Andy’s got 14 or 15 people plus a whole bevy of assistants working on these three unsigned editorials every day. They’re completely reflexively liberal, utterly predictable, usually poorly written and totally ineffectual. I mean, just try and remember the last time that anybody was talking about one of those editorials. You know, I can think of one time recently, which is with the [Edward] Snowden stuff, but mostly nobody pays attention, and millions of dollars is being spent on that stuff.”

Asked by The Observer for hard evidence supporting a loss of influence of the vaunted editorial page, the same Times staffer fired back, “You know, the editorials are never on the most emailed list; they’re never on the most read list. People just are not paying attention, and they don’t care. It’s a waste of money.”

Andrew Rosenthal. (Photo via Patrick McMullan)

Andrew Rosenthal. (Photo via Patrick McMullan)

Multiple attempts to reach Mr. Rosenthal were rebuffed, and emails directly to him were responded to instead by the Times publicity operation. A Times spokesperson defended the page, telling The Observer, “The power of the editorial page is in the strength of the ideas it expresses. Some editorials are read more widely than others, but virtually all generate discussion and response among our readers, policy-makers and thought leaders. Recently, the editorial series on STEM Education and the editorial on Mr. Snowden sparked a great deal of discussion among readers and policy-makers.” Asked for data, she added, “We do not share statistics or traffic numbers at the individual article or section level.” In a list of 2013’s most read stories the Times sent over, no editorials or columnists appeared (two guest editorials, from Angelina Jolie and Vladimir Putin, did make the cut).

Another sign of a loss of influence may have been revealed this past fall. A member of then Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s inner circle who remained in City Hall until the end of Mr. Bloomberg’s term told The Observer that the entire administration was “shocked” by the Times’ inability to drag its endorsed candidates over the goal line, referring to Christine Quinn in the mayoral primary and Dan Garodnick in the City Council speaker race. “When was the last time The New York Times lost both? Those are both essentially Democratic primaries, and the Times couldn’t carry any water.” The Times also endorsed Dan Squadron for advocate; he was defeated by Letitia James.

This charge was amplified by a different member of Mr. Bloomberg’s kitchen cabinet who left the administration a few years ago. He reports that Ms. Quinn’s political team viewed the Times endorsement as “critical” to her cementing the nomination, which led them to allow the Times to follow Ms. Quinn around making a documentary. What resulted was Hers To Lose, a behind-the-scenes look that was clearly supposed to show the historic win of an out lesbian but instead turned into an awkward and sometimes excruciating look at a campaign that finished in third place, despite the Times endorsement.

According to this source, “Chris worked very hard to get the endorsement. Ask yourself: Why did she allow the Times movie? Why would any campaign ever do that? They were so focused on the editorial [endorsement] that when Executive Editor Jill Abramson personally called over and asked Chris to do the movie, it was seen within the Quinn campaign as something they’d better say ‘yes’ to in order to get the endorsement.”

As for the charges that Mr. Rosenthal is a despot, one writer provided a funny example that others interviewed for this story immediately recognized. “Rosenthal himself is like a petty tyrant, like anytime anyone on the news pages uses the word ‘should’ in their copy, you know, he sends nasty emails around kind of CCing the world. The word ‘should’ belongs to him and his people.”

Also coming in for intense criticism were the opinion-page columnists, always a juicy target. Particularly strong criticism, to the point of resentful (some might say jealous), was directed at Thomas Friedman, the three-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize who writes mostly about foreign affairs and the environment.

One current Times staffer told The Observer, “Tom Friedman is an embarrassment. I mean there are multiple blogs and Tumblrs and Twitter feeds that exist solely to make fun of his sort of blowhardy bullshit.” (Gawker has been particularly hard on Mr. Friedman, with Hamilton Nolan memorably skewering him in a column entitled “Tom Friedman Travels the World to Find Incredibly Uninteresting Platitudes,” as a “mustachioed soothsaying simpleton”; another column was titled “Tom Friedman Does Not Know What’s Happening Here,” and the @firetomfriedman Twitter account has more than 1,800 followers.)

From left, Joe Nocera, Thomas L. Friedman, Arthur Sulzberger Jr., Carmen Reinhart, Andrew Rosenthal, Paul Krugman.

From left, Joe Nocera, Thomas L. Friedman, Arthur Sulzberger Jr., Carmen Reinhart, Andrew Rosenthal, Paul Krugman. (Photo by Neil Rasmus/BFAnyc.com)

Another Times reporter brought up Mr. Friedman, unsolicited, toward the end of a conversation that was generally positive about the editorial page: “I never got a note from Andy or anything like that. But I will say, regarding Friedman, there’s the sense that he’s on cruise control now that he’s his own brand. And no one is saying, ‘Hey, did you see the latest Friedman column?’ in the way they’ll talk about ‘Hey, Gail [Collins] was really funny today.’”

Asked if this stirring resentment toward the editorial page might not just be garden variety news vs. edit stuff or even the leanings of a conservative news reporter toward a liberal editorial page, one current Times staffer said, “It really isn’t about politics, because I land more to the left than I do to the right. I just find it …”

He paused for a long time before continuing and then, unprompted, returned to Mr. Friedman. “I just think it’s bad, and nobody is acknowledging that they suck, but everybody in the newsroom knows it, and we really are embarrassed by what goes on with Friedman. I mean anybody who knows anything about most of what he’s writing about understands that he’s, like, literally mailing it in from wherever he is on the globe. He’s a travel reporter. A joke. The guy gets $75,000 for speeches and probably charges the paper for his first-class airfare.”

Another former Times writer, someone who has gone on to great success elsewhere, expressed similar contempt (and even used the word “embarrass”) and says it’s longstanding.

“I think the editorials are viewed by most reporters as largely irrelevant, and there’s not a lot of respect for the editorial page. The editorials are dull, and that’s a cardinal sin. They aren’t getting any less dull. As for the columnists, Friedman is the worst. He hasn’t had an original thought in 20 years; he’s an embarrassment. He’s perceived as an idiot who has been wrong about every major issue for 20 years, from favoring the invasion of Iraq to the notion that green energy is the most important topic in the world even as the financial markets were imploding. Then there’s Maureen Dowd, who has been writing the same column since George H. W. Bush was president.”

Yet another former Times writer concurred. “Andy is a wrecking ball, a lot like his father but without the gravitas. What strikes me about the editorial and op-ed pages is that they have become relentlessly grim. With very few exceptions, there’s almost nothing light-hearted or whimsical or sprightly about them, nothing to gladden the soul. They’re horribly doctrinaire, down the line, and that goes for the couple of conservatives in the bunch. It wasn’t always like that on those pages.”

THIS VIEW IS NOT unanimous. Joe LaPointe, who spent 20 years covering sports for the Times before taking a buyout in 2010, views the page and its maestro more positively. “The editorial page certainly has changed. It used to be bland, wishy-washy. Now it’s strident. It has more energy and bite. Rosenthal’s voice rings very loud, and I read it closer than I ever had. It’s definitely a left-wing, progressive page, but I find the editorials very interesting. And my brief dealings with Andy have been very pleasant.”

Arhut Sulzberger Jr. (Photo by YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/GettyImages)

Arthur Sulzberger Jr. (Photo via Getty Images)

Timothy L. O’Brien, the publisher of Bloomberg View and a former New York Times editor and reporter, also has nice things to say about an institution that is now a competitor. “While all opinion pages have hard work to do to stand out on the digital landscape, the Times is still a very singular and weighty player and never easily discounted.”

So just how widespread is the impression of laziness and tyranny within the opinion section?

One former business reporter remarked that the entire business section viewed the editorial page as “irrelevant” and went on to say, “Their business editorials were relatively rare and really bad. Floyd Norris went up there to make the business editorials better and eventually just left because he got tired of trying to explain economics to them.”

A veteran reporter brought up the Sunday Review section, which falls under Mr. Rosenthal’s purview. “When it stopped being called Week in Review, I don’t know anyone in the newsroom who thinks it got better, and almost everyone thinks it got worse. Everyone I know thinks it’s less fun and more pointless. It just reaffirms the idea that he’s an empire builder. He wanted this expanded authority and Arthur’s giving it to him. He’s not the least bit answerable to Jill. Even as the newsroom has cut its staff and budget, Andy’s has grown.”

One current staffer pointed to the lack of diversity on the editorial page—the exact kind of charge for which one could imagine the Times filleting another institution. She declined to be quoted, even anonymously, but noted that Mr. Rosenthal seemed to view the editorial board akin to the way the Supreme Court was once viewed: There was a “minority seat” and a “female seat.” Of the 32 people who are either columnists or members of the editorial board, 26 are white, and 23 are male; 19 are—egad!—white males. (During the race for City Council speaker, NY1 Noticias reporter Juan Manuel Benítez tweeted at Times columnist Michael Powell, “Are there any Latinos in the edit board?” Mr. Powell replied, “Just looking, appears none.”)

Another current staffer blamed the same lack of imagination for a recent Times loss. When Times writer Catherine Rampell was snatched by The Washington Post to become an op-ed columnist, this reporter emailed The Observer, “It would never even occur to [Andy] to take a 33-year-old economics reporter and make her an op-ed columnist, but it’s just the kind of jolt his page needs.”

Another reporter told a story in which he had a “scared-y cat editor who had been so frightened by the vitriol that Andy spews around the newsroom about the word ‘should’ that [the editor] literally took it out of my copy every time I used the word when it was applied to an entity or a government institution, as opposed to something an individual should do. She literally just removed it so I didn’t have an opportunity to get into it with them, because she just wouldn’t allow it in my copy.”

Yet another reporter described the exact same obsession with “should” by saying of Mr. Rosenthal, “You know, I think he literally had a Google alert for the word ‘should’ and, like, goes reading through the entire newspaper for it, and that’s what he does all day instead of improving his section.”

The resentment extends beyond the policing of words and into a fight over resources.

Jill Abramson.

Jill Abramson. (Photo via Getty Images)

“They continue to own the top right of the home page, even in the redesign, which is a really, really important place for eyeballs. That probably translates into a lot of readers, but it’s only because they have that guaranteed placement, which they do not deserve, so it’s just a source of real annoyance. At a time when resources are diminished and people fight over them, it’s also a source of aggravation.”

Given the near universality of the view within the Times that the opinion pages have grown tired and irrelevant, it’s a wonder that nothing has been done to address the problem, especially as the paper has trimmed and restructured in every department. (The Times has made cuts to its roster of columnists, including Clyde Haberman and Verlyn Klinkenborg). According to the Times spokesperson, “We have a relatively small editorial staff that has remained steady over the past 10 years.”

The difficulty comes in part from the way the Times is structured. Andrew Rosenthal reports not to Executive Editor Jill Abramson but directly to publisher Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr. One source claims that Mr. Sulzberger is “afraid” of Mr. Rosenthal, possibly because of a perceived debt that the Sulzberger family owes to Mr. Rosenthal’s father, A. M. “Abe” Rosenthal, for the elder Mr. Rosenthal’s half century of service to the Sulzberger family.

Andrew Rosenthal now inhabits perhaps the most important opinion perch in the world, at a time in which the media is awash in opinion. During his long career at the Times—a career that has included stints as assistant managing editor and foreign editor, as well as some time at the Associated Press—he has consolidated hold on that perch and answers only to Mr. Sulzberger, himself facing the challenge of filling his father’s big shoes.

One veteran reporter who has been at the paper for more than 20 years said, “‘Bullying’ and ‘petty’ are Andy’s middle name. He’s very smart, he’s very funny. But any place he’s gone where he’s had a position of authority, he’s bullying and petty. For a time in 2000, he was essentially running the Washington bureau, though I don’t think he had the title of bureau chief. Dean Baquet was the national editor and left for the L.A. Times, and they put Andy in as sort of acting national editor for the duration of the 2000 coverage. During the 2000 campaign, he developed a very personal, gut-level animus toward Al Gore. And it showed in our coverage. And then he was the assistant managing editor under Howell [Raines], and the consensus was that as he rose he became nastier. He had the reputation as Howell’s hatchet man. When Howell was tossed out and Andy was sent to the editorial page, there were a lot of people breathing a sigh of relief that they didn’t have to deal with Andy anymore. That’s not an exaggeration. He had made himself extremely unpopular.”

There is suddenly evidence that the festering dissatisfaction with the edit page has broken into what one reporter dubbed “semi-open revolt.” One reporter says that he literally will not allow Mr. Rosenthal to join their lunch table in the cafeteria.

The Observer heard from two different sources about a posting created by respected health reporter Catherine Saint Louis and shared among her friends that pointed out a bevy of bad thinking made by the editorial page in a recent editorial related to the Affordable Care Act. In it, Ms. Saint Louis detailed the many errors in the piece’s coverage and asserted that “the basic premise is wrong.” (The Observer agreed not to share the post itself, since the person who shared it with The Observer did not have permission from Ms. Saint Louis to do so.)

Confronted with the charge that the reporters might simply be envious that resources don’t seem to be bleeding from the edit page the way they have throughout the rest of the institution, one reporter hit back hard at that notion.

“It’s so obvious that people on the news side find what the people on the opinion side are doing to be less than optimal. And it’s not that we want their money; we want them to be awesome. The fact of the matter is the Wall Street Journal editorial page just kicks our editorial page’s ass. I mean there’s just no contest, from top to bottom, and it’s disappointing. You know, we hold ourselves to incredibly high standards on the news side, and we meet them more often than not. Methodically, for the last 10 years, you’ve seen various editors march through and dispatch with mediocrity in many places where it had been allowed to fester for years, from the book review to the feature pages. And so to see it persist and persist and persist on the editorial page with nobody having the guts to retire some of the people or things that are not only not working but have become caricatures of themselves is just a huge bummer.”

UPDATE: After this piece was published on Tuesday afternoon, several New York Times reporters The Observer had not originally interviewed have been in touch. One texted the author simply, “Thank you.” Another emailed to say, “I saw opinion people storming around the newsroom. … Especially nice to see Andy get the focus.” Finally, Catherine Saint Louis, whose post critical of the editorial page’s take on health care was cited in the story, contacted The Observer to take issue with the characterization of the impact of her post: “I think these paragraphs err in leaving the impression that a single Facebook post by me constitutes “evidence that the festering dissatisfaction with the edit page has broken into … ‘semi-open revolt.’ ” It does not. Such a post would at most constitute evidence that one reporter disagreed with a single editorial. As it happens, I have no objection to the way op-ed conducts business.”
Read more at http://observer.com/2014/02/the-tyranny-and-lethargy-of-the-times-editorial-page/#ixzz2sTo5cSVG Follow us: @newyorkobserver on Twitter | newyorkobserver on Facebook

The New York Times is as liberal “as all get out,” to use the words of the Times reporters themselves.  That means it is intellectually bankrupt, morally bankrupt and of course FINANCIALLY bankrupt.  Oh, and fascist.  Because even the leftist reporters are telling us that it is as FASCIST “as all get out,” as well.

Decent People MUST Demand A Special Prosecutor Over IRS Scandal: ‘Not Even A Smidgeon of Corruption’ Obama Says Of Supposedly Active Investigation

February 5, 2014

What do we as a people do when the president refuses to put an independent prosecutor in charge of an investigation into the worst kind of democracy-poisoning corruption in his own administration???

It is a fact that 292 conservative groups were targeted by the IRS (whose union gives 97% of political contributions to Democrats versus 2% to Republicans, for what it’s worth) versus only SIX liberal groups.  And only ONE of those six liberal groups was denied the approval that ALL the conservative groups were denied.

It is a fact that the criterion for the targeting was “anti-Obama rhetoric.”  That is simply chilling to anyone who ISN’T hoping Big Brother and then the beast of Revelation will show up to take over the world.

What do we do when we find out that this investigation has without any question been slow-walked, with the director of the FBI forced to acknowledge that he had no idea who was running the incredibly important IRS investigation, or how many agents were working on it as far back as June of last year.  We found at that time that few if any of the conservatives who had been politically targeted by the IRS had been interviewed to obtain their stories and their testimony.  We learned that as of late last year, the FBI had STILL had bothered to contact any of the conservative victims of the IRS.  How on earth can you claim that you are investigating a crime if you don’t even bother to get the stories of the victims of the crime???

What do we do as a nation when the president’s handpicked law dog appoints a maxed-out Obama donor to head this investigation???

Two Republican lawmakers and a conservative legal group are questioning the Justice Department’s selection of a Democratic donor to lead the agency’s probe into the Internal Revenue Service’s targeting of certain advocacy groups during the 2010 and 2012 election cycles.

House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) issued a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr.  on Wednesday demanding the department remove DOJ trial attorney Barbara Bosserman from the case, saying her involvement is “highly inappropriate and has compromised the administration’s investigation of the IRS.”

Bosserman donated a combined $6,750 to President Obama’s election campaigns and the Democratic National Committee between 2004 and 2012, according to federal campaign finance records.

The American Center for Law and Justice, which represents 41 groups suing the IRS over its controversial screening methods, also criticized the appointment of Bosserman to lead the probe.

“Appointing an avowed political supporter of President Obama to head up the Justice Department probe is not only disturbing but puts politics right in the middle of what is supposed to be an independent investigation to determine who is responsible for the Obama administration’s unlawful targeting of conservative and tea party groups,” ACLJ chief counsel Jay Sekulow said in a statement Thursday.

The Obama DoJ excuse is that they “cannot take political leanings into account when assigning cases and that making legal political contributions does not prevent its attorneys from fulfilling their duties without bias.”  Okay, fine: so appoint an investigator who maxed-out giving political donations to Mitt Romney.  Allow a doctrinaire conservative to conduct the investigation, since it [supposedly] doesn’t matter to the Obama DoJ.  It’s kind of like the wrong price in the store: every single time it happens it seems to favor the store and work against the customer and yet it’s always an accident.

What do we do when the president says that there is “Not even a smidgeon of corruption” in an investigation that is supposed to be open and ongoing???  How can anyone now claim that this investigation has been anything other than politically tainted???  And at the very highest possible level???  And why don’t the American people deserve a special prosecutor to ensure that the tax collection service of this nation is not being used as a political attack dog to benefit a pathologically dishonest and corrupt administration???

It comes down to this: how in the hell does Obama know that the investigation won’t turn up so much as “a smidgeon of corruption”???  Because his maxed-out donor stooge is fixing the investigation for him, that’s why.

This is the most corrupt administration and the most corrupt president in history.  Obama compared himself to Nixon during O’Reilly’s interview.  Good.  Because he makes Nixon look like a choir boy when it comes to political corruption.

Consider how Obama had his gubmint thugs go after one woman who had never had a problem with the government until she made the mistake of refusing to believe that her new president was a total fascist who would reward his friends and punish his enemies:

IRS officials have recently admitted improperly giving special scrutiny to conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status because the agency was “swamped with applications” and looking for “shortcuts”. But in a federal lawsuit filed last week, Engelbrecht claims the IRS’ actions toward her interests actually created a great deal more effort and paperwork for all concerned.

The trouble began shortly after Engelbrecht founded True the Vote, which trains election volunteers and aims to root out voter fraud; and King Street Patriots, a group with ideals similar to the Tea Party. Both sought tax-exempt status from the IRS in July 2010. And both organizations drew the ire of Democrats. Democrats accused True the Vote of intimidating voters in its poll watching efforts, which the group denies. And the Texas Democratic Party successfully sued King Street Patriots, arguing that it’s an unregistered political action committee.

But Engelbrecht’s attorney, Cleta Mitchell, says it’s not just the Democratic Party that went after the conservative causes, but also the federal government. Within months of the groups filing for tax-exempt status, Engelbrecht claims she started getting hit by an onslaught of harassment: six FBI domestic terrorism inquiries, an IRS visit, two IRS business audits, two IRS personal audits, and inspections of her equipment manufacturing company by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Texas environmental quality officials.

“Not a smidgeon of corruption.”  That’s like Obama when he said, “Your taxes won’t go up one dime.”  Because they went up by THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS instead.

It is a fact that 76% of the American people want a special prosecutor to investigate Obama’s IRS scandal.

Obama’s “faux” Fox scandal is an outright lie from a truly evil man.

We now find that the Benghazi scandal that Obama also refuses to acknowledge is anything other than the invention of Fox News is a red hot example of political corruption.  We learn that the CIA station chief – whose assessment is all important – very clearly and very immediately stated that the attack was NOT an “escalation of protest” as Obama had all of his officials claim it was.  Contrary to the Obama cover-up, THERE WAS NO PROTEST.  We now know that within MINUTES of the Benghazi attack, Defense Department officials briefed Obama that the event was a terrorist attack and NOT a demonstration over a video as Obama claimed for weeks afterward.  How on earth is that not a scandal???  We suffered a terrorist attack at the very time that Obama was falsely stating that he had won the war on terror.  We now know that the Deputy Director of the CIA lied – and even lied to the FBI – about having changed the official White House talking points.  And we now know that this very same former Deputy Director just joined a group founded by “Clinton’s principal gatekeeper.”

Obama says there was no scandal in the cover-up of Benghazi.  Just answer the question: who altered the talking points that claimed a Youtube video protest instead of a terrorist attack was responsible for the Benghazi event that resulted in the murder of the first US ambassador to be killed in the line of duty since 1979???  And why is it that what we now know to be a lie so transparently benefitted Obama’s political interest during a campaign when he was trumpeting his victory over terrorism???

We have a very clear pattern of systematic corruption at the highest levels of the Obama administration.  That is simply a categorical fact.

During Watergate, there came a point when Republicans had a choice to make: do the right thing for the nation or circle the wagons politically.  In doing what was right for the nation, they did something that we can now definitely say that the Democrat Party is pathologically incapable of doing.  To be a Democrat at this point means to be a person devoid of any scintilla of virtue, or integrity, or honesty, or honor, or decency of any kind.  And all we need to do is look at the ObamaCare disgrace along with the IRS scandal to learn that there is no possible way that Democrats will do the right thing for the country.

It is long past time to demand that Barack Obama appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the IRS scandal.  If there was in fact “not even a smidgen of corruption,” then why the hell did multiple senior level IRS managers plead the fifth amendment???   What do you say when you plead the Fifth Amendment?  You say, ” “Your honor, I respectfully invoke my rights under the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution on the grounds that answering questions may incriminate me.”  These people committed CRIMES and they KNOW they committed crimes.

What is perhaps even more frightening is that Obama is trying to rewrite the law so that the criminal targeting of conservative groups becomes the way it is done moving forward.

If Obama allows an honest investigation into the scandals plaguing his administration, it will lead to his being impeached for committing high crimes and misdemeanors.  And dirty Democrats know it.

CBO Report: ObamaCare To Gut U.S. Growth, Destroy 2.3 Million Jobs, Add Over Trillion To Deficit (Just Like We TOLD You Would Happen)

February 4, 2014

This just in: Democrats are demon-possessed liars who destroyed America during that two-year period when they fascistically OWNED the White House, the Senate and the House (now they merely fascistically own the White House and the Senate, and you’d think they have no power or responsibility at all given the way they blame the House under GOP leadership for basically all the hell that has resulted from Democrat rule).

One of my very favorite Democrat-Obama lies from hell is actually one of the earliest: the lie that it was BUSH who somehow drove up the deficit in the year AFTER he left office and Obama has been reducing it ever since.

Here was one of my earlier responses to that one:

That is such bullcrap it is beyond unreal.

It is your assertion that it was President Damn Bush who passed the $862 billion stimulus on February 17, 2009 is it?

It is your assertion that it was President Damn Bush who did that $79 billion bailout for Government Motors and their union Democrats in 2009?

It is your assertion that it was President Damn Bush who signed that $410 billion Omnibus bill in March of 2009?

It is your assertion that it was President Damn Bush who left $350 billion in TARP money to President Damn Bush who spent it in early 2009???

It is your assertion that it was President Damn Bush who rammed that damned $2.6 trillion ObamaCare – Ooh, I’m sorry, GorgieCare bill – down our collectivist throats?

It’s really amazing to me what a lousy bunch of Marxists you liars truly ARE.  Obama passes all these things, takes credit for them, but when it’s time to be financially responsible for his own damn bills it’s more “Bush did it! Put all the garbage I did and took credit for on Bush’s bill!!!”

George Bush actually HAD a budget for FY-2009.  It was of course decried by you cockroach Democrats for its CUTS.  It had a deficit of $400 billion, you lying weasel.  And It didn’t have any of the above crap that you seem to think Bush was responsible for.

Obama cynically and ruthlessly exploited the technical fact that most of a new president’s first year is under the budget of his predecessor to LOAD UP THE DEFICIT in 2009.  Obama BLEW UP the deficit, which had been $10 trillion under Bush and is now well over $17.3 trillion.  Bush added over $4 trillion to the deficit over eight years, which of course was bad; Obama is on pace to more than TRIPLE that such that he will add over $12 trillion to our unpayable and unsustainable deficit before he leaves office in disgrace.

Even the liberal Washington Post fact checked that and gave it the Liar-in-Chief the maximum number of Pinocchios for his lie.  But like Hitler, Obama merely keeps telling his “Big Lie” over and over and over again.

Of course, our true debt is way north of $225 trillion now.  America is doomed.  It WILL collapse under the weight of Democrat debt.  And please don’t be so stupid and so depraved not to realize that 99.9 percent of all our debt has come from DEMOCRAT programs such as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and now ObamaCare that just exploded federal spending far beyond the realm of sanity.  And the night before it all goes to hell, the media talking heads will be assuring you that everything will be fine.

Also, of course, the Demagogue-in-Chief has been so blatantly dishonest and hypocritical about the debt ceiling that it is beyond amazing.  That’s the man’s style.  Lie, lie, lie – and then demonize his opponents when the truth finally emerges.

And, of course, we’re only now BEGINNING to see just how truly awful and truly evil ObamaCare truly is.

Please understand that this latest CBO report STILL doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface as to how simply godawful ObamaCare will be to America.  Remember when it passed, laden with budget gimmickry designed to lie to the American people so they wouldn’t have any clue how demonic this piece of fascist garbage law truly would be?  They reported that ObamaCare would be “deficit neutral.”  And then the budget estimates just kept getting worse and worse as time passed.  Do you think now, with the ObamaCare monster only one-third out of its hellhole, that they’ve figured out how truly bad it is yet???  Not even CLOSE.

The UPI  article reporting on the latest ObamaCare fiasco today implicitly points out how truly bad the CBO has been in estimating the damage of ObamaCare:

WASHINGTON, Feb. 4 (UPI) — The White House Tuesday disputed claims a Congressional Budget Office study concluded the Affordable Care Act would cost millions of U.S. jobs.

The CBO study — which also said the ACA is projected to reduce the federal deficit by more than $1 trillion in 10 years — said the healthcare reform law is expected to reduce employment by about 2.3 million jobs during the same period. The new estimate nearly triples the previous CBO estimate of 800,000 jobs that the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, was to have cost the economy, the Hill newspaper reported.

The law is expected to slow the economy and cause many people to leave the workforce, the impact being felt mostly by low-wage workers, the Washington Post said.

From “this fascist ObamaCare takeover is going to wipe out 800,000 jobs” to “this Nazi ObamaCare law is going to destroy 2.3 MILLION jobs.”  You almost get the sense that panicked CBO economists are desperately throwing darts at a board to try to get their hands on some kind of number to relay just how catastrophically horrible this thing is going to be.

I remember Nancy Pelosi boasting that her messiah’s ObamaCare would create 4 million jobs, with 400,000 jobs occurring immediately.  That depraved, dishonest witch ought to be in PRISON right now for her crime of lying to the American people.  Just like her false messiah Obama ought to be in prison right now.

The Washington Post piece on the CBO bombshell of the fascist ObamaCare takeover of healthcare also underscores the CBO’s inability to comprehend just how bad this lawless “law” truly is:

The Affordable Care Act will reduce the number of full-time workers by more than 2 million in coming years, congressional budget analysts said Tuesday, a finding that sent the White House scrambling to defend a law that has bedeviled President Obama for years.

After obtaining coverage through the health law, some workers may forgo employment, while others may reduce hours, according to a report by the Congressional Budget Office. Low-wage workers are the most likely to drop out of the workforce as a result of the law, it said. The CBO said the law’s impact on jobs mostly would be felt after 2016.

Republicans quickly pointed to the report’s findings as more evidence of the health law’s flaws, one of their major themes ahead of this year’s mid-term elections. Republicans see the Affordable Care Act as a political boon this year, after the disastrous launch of the law’s Web site last fall.

The CBO report said those rocky beginnings of the federal online marketplace would suppress enrollment this year, though not in the future. The agency predicted that the number of Americans who buy private health plans through the new insurance exchanges before a March 31 deadline for coverage in 2014 will be 6 million, while the number of low-income people who join Medicaid this year will be 8 million.

Both figures are one million fewer people than the CBO had forecast the last time it issued such a prediction, nine months ago.

Off by a million people in only nine months.  Because after all, what’s a million people between friends?  It’s kind of like Obama’s totalitarian big-government socialist buddy Joseph Stalin put it: one death is a tragedy; one million is a statistic.  Under messiah Obama, we’re all just “statistics” now.  And, of course, as the next Democrat president would have  you believe, “What difference does it make?”

But you see how the estimates just keep getting worse and worse???

Notice the description of the moral hazard of people who will simply abandon TRYING to get a low-wage job and simply skate on the dole with their free Medicaid.  This was a job-destroying act in every possible way you can slice it.

Barack Obama is the worst liar and the most amply DOCUMENTED liar in the history of the United States.  If he says good morning, the man is lying.  President “If you like your health plan you can keep your health plan.  Period.  End of story” has proven that.  A pit viper has more credibility than Obama and is far less dangerous to your health.

Take a trip down memory lane.  Conservatives have been ACCURATELY PREDICTING exactly what has happened under ObamaCare.  And Democrats viciously and rabidly demonized us in every way imaginable for telling the thing they hate the most – the TRUTH.  Because if you are a Democrat you hate the truth and call people who tell the truth “racist.”

People like me tried to warn America.  But the American people overall have become ignorant and depraved and frankly pathetic.  I think of Nazi Germany and a man who tried to warn that nation:

I am writing this from cell 24. Outside a new Germany is being created. Many millions are rejoicing. Hitler is promising everyone precisely what they want. I think when they wake to their sobering senses, they will find they have been led by the nose and duped by lies.”

That’s YOU, America.  YOUR country has been “fundamentally transformed” by the very worst kind of liar.  By the time most of you people finally wake up to your sobering senses, your country will have imploded under the weight of its own debt and moral stupidity and you will have nothing.  And of course what will you do?  Being wicked, you will keep rejecting the God whom you have already rejected with your love of abortion and sodomy and you will instead put your trust in total socialism.  And that’s when the beast prophesied in Revelation will come to finish the job Obama started.