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YOP!

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

I am Here

A couple of people have emailed me wondering if I’m dead or what. Thought I’d put up a brief post to put people’s fears to rest. Things are going very, very well. The problem is that I tend to use social media these days instead of blogging. I guess that’s a mistake. It’s like giving the NSA the keys to your house, and you lose control of everything you write, but there it is. I have so many great friends, and they’re all on the social sites, so I’ve ended up spending way too much time there.

Maybe I’ll try to do something about it.

Anyway, I hope all my readers have a great Christmas!

Birds of Paradise

Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

Marvel at my Video Skills

Here is the more-or-less final version of my second original composition. I decided to name it New Dawn, after my church, and after what I think God is up to in the world. I had to use Youtube. Couldn’t figure out any other way to put in on Facebook. Hope you like it.

Psalms 37:4
Zechariah 4:6

Found You

Saturday, October 20th, 2012

New Stat Tool

This is highly irritating.

I thought my site was getting almost no traffic, so I was less inclined to write. Because I was less inclined to write, the site got less traffic.

I was measuring the traffic using Sitemeter, the same service that used to tell me 3,000 people showed up every day. I never bothered looking at my CPanel stats, because they were confusing. A few weeks back, Sitemeter crapped out entirely, showing no visits at all. I complained, and they didn’t respond.

Today I decided to stick a different counter on the page, and while I was working on it, I checked CPanel. It turns out I get several times as many visits as I thought. So people have been showing up, but I haven’t been here to answer the door.

I decided to install Statcounter today. The interface is weird, but it’s easier than trying to decipher the CPanel stuff.

I may blog more often now. Not sure.

I guess Sitemeter has really gone down the toilet. It says over three million uniques have been counted since I installed it. I have to wonder how many went unrecorded.

Anyway, nice to see you again.

Obama Should Get a Commission

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

Truck Gun

I solved my truck gun problem. I figured I’d write about it so people could tell me I’m an idiot. Half of the fun of buying a gun is getting on the Internet, letting people know, and having them call you an idiot. You bought the wrong gun. You paid too much. You got the wrong optics. Your mother shoots homey-style. Whatever.

I found three really good solutions. One is the Yugo (Zastava) M92 pistol. Wonderful weapon. Not expensive. No 922r problems, unless I am misinformed. The second is the Vz2008. This is a Century Arms Vz58 with a non-chromed barrel. They’re supposed to be somewhat crappier than the ones Czechpoint sells, but they only cost about $400, so it’s a wonderful choice. The third gun is an AK variant made specifically for people who carry in vehicles. It’s the AMD-65, made in Hungary. It’s under 26″ long, folded, and you can shoot it without opening it up. The barrel is chrome-lined, and people say they get good accuracy. It comes with a vertical foregrip, which is fantastic. You can get one of these guns for about $440.

I probably should have gone with the Vz2008, but I don’t have any AK-47s, and the AMD-65 looked really good. I have one on the way.

My plan is to stick a Chinese laser under the gun’s barrel. That will take some thought. I’ll need to drill holes in the handguard and install a rail, or I’ll have to replace the handguard entirely and get a rail-mounted foregrip.

This gun has very few US-made parts, so magazines are a problem. You have to have a certain number of US-made items in order to beat 922r, and the AMD-65 relies heavily on American magazines. No cheap surplus foreign jobs. I decided to pick up a couple of 30-round Tapcos. They’re plastic, which purists hate, but supposedly they work well, and if they stink, I’m only out $14.

Hogue makes a handguard for it. That would count toward 922r. I think an American foregrip would, too, but I’m not sure. I can definitely score a point with a new gas piston.

I have read differing opinions of the AMD-65. Some people say it’s crap from one end to the other, except for the way it functions. Others say it actually looks nicer than other AKs, except for the Krylon finish, which can be fixed with Duracoat or something similar. Some say the accuracy is bad, but others say they get tight groups. I’m inclined to suspect that the shooters are the main problem. Hungarian barrels have a good reputation, and this gun has a short sight radius, which would tend to make a poor shooter perform worse.

We are equipping the police with this rifle over in Afghanistan, presumably so it will be more convenient for them to shoot our troops in the back.

The buttstock is wire. I have no problem with that. I don’t want to hear about cheek welds and 100-yard groups. It’s tough to plead self-defense when you’re shooting someone a hundred yards away, and I may never get a chance to open the stock anyway. If I can do well at a hundred feet or less, I’ll be ecstatic.

I shot my Vz58 folder the other day, and it has a crappy buttstock (or whatever you call a wire buttstock substitute). Without even trying, I put four shots in one hole at 75 feet. That will do. If the Hungarian rifle even approaches that level of accuracy, it will shoot better than I do in a panic situation.

I think I have my needs covered. Glock for carry. Cheap but reliable AK for true disasters that happen away from home. Both lasered.

I have high hopes that Obama will lose the election, but this makes me feel a little better.

No More Dual Citizenship

Monday, August 27th, 2012

I’m In

On Saturday, I drove to Winter Haven as part of a church expedition. A friend of my pastor has established a new church up there. We went to help get it going. The church is called New Dawn Ministries of Winter Haven. For Google purposes, I will add more information. The pastor is Ricardo Cardona, and the address is 225 Avenue O Southwest, Winter Haven 33880. They’re not really on top of the business of publicizing themselves, so I figure this can’t hurt.

The event was planned a long time back. I wanted to go, because I’m dying to leave Miami. Central Florida is the area that draws me, although I’m not completely sure that’s where God wants me. When I learned about the trip, I started searching for homes in the area, just so I could look at them. The prices are ridiculous. For a hundred thousand dollars, you can get something really nice. For twice that much, I could get a home which would be almost exactly what I dream of.

When the time to leave drew near, Tropical Storm Isaac popped up. I kept watching it. I’ve been through so many hurricanes, I know exactly what you can and can’t get away with, so I knew I had to stay informed. As of the day before the trip, I thought everything was okay, so I got up on Saturday and hit the road at 6:30.

There is nothing like leaving Miami. It makes me feel like there’s a fist inside me, clutching my guts, and it opens its grip as I pass through Broward (the next county to the north). It’s a beautiful sensation. I was alone in the truck, but as I drove, I wasn’t bored for a second. I enjoyed it thoroughly.

I had a choice. One route goes up the coast, via the Turnpike. The other goes by Lake Okeechobee and the sugar country. One route is longer but faster. The other is slower but more interesting. I took the fast route up and the slow route down.

Florida is a fairly ugly state, at least in the southern part. Most people don’t realize that. The southeastern part has been prettied up. Over the decades, the swamps were drained, the native plants were killed off, and nicer plants were brought in. Virtually none of the best-looking trees in southeast Florida are indigenous. People brought in palms, fruit trees, poincianas, banyans, seagrapes, and other things that looked better than the native scrub.

Once you get away from the big clump of cities, you will see nasty-looking cabbage palms and palmettos all over the place. The ground is full of sand spurs and ground spikes. The grass is brown. There are weeds everywhere. The ground itself tends to be rocky and sandy. The wildlife looks ratty and mangy; maybe the heat and humidity is hard on animals’ coats. We get a lot of bald dogs down here.

Even though the landscape deteriorated as I drove, I felt the pressure inside me releasing. The sight of the horizon was like a drink of cool water after a day in the desert.

During the second half of the drive up, I started seeing wonderful things. Bush stickers. Romney signs. Big billboards offering help to women considering abortion. Just writing about it, I feel hope rising inside me. It reminds me that not all of America is corrupt.

This is one of the things I love about the rest of the state. I guess it’s the main thing I love. Miami is full of nasty, aggressive people who–I don’t know how else to say it–remind me of hungry pigs. They root, root, root, and they accumulate everything they can, and then they die. That’s what life is all about in Miami. Generally, though, Florida isn’t like that.

Down here, even the Christians can be trying. My old church was full of Obama Democrats. Christianity is not a political movement, but liberalism is a political movement which is incompatible with Christianity, and you can’t say that about conservatism. It’s impossible to be a good Christian and support politicians who condone the slaughter of the unborn, the dismantling of Israel, increased taxation on churches and charities, sexual perversion, and the exclusion of Christianity from public life. It can’t be done. But there are plenty of Christians who do not understand that, and it’s fatiguing to be around them all the time.

Liberal Christians tend to use socialism to defend themselves, as though confiscation and redistribution were the same thing as giving from the heart. They don’t have the spirituality to realize that human beings do not get credit for the government’s giving, especially when the things that are given are taken from others, by force. God has always been against big government, as the story of the anointing of Saul shows. We were supposed to be ruled by godly men and the Holy Spirit, not a secular vote-buying machine.

It’s funny, but when I persuade people to start praying in tongues more, they start becoming more conservative. They start to see that Obama is an enemy of Israel, and that his support for perversion and unrestricted abortion is wrong. The Spirit opens people’s eyes. Christians who aren’t operating in the gifts of the Spirit don’t have the capacity to understand anything properly. They’re like puppies whose eyes never open.

As Winter Haven drew near, the landscape changed. Suddenly the grass looked better. There were lakes everywhere. There were hills! I hadn’t expected that. It was surprising. It looked much better than nearby areas like Frostproof. And while it was definitely a rural community, they had stores. There was a mall. It wasn’t like living in the middle of Montana. A person living near Winter Haven can find a Lowe’s when he needs one.

When I got to Winter Haven, I was not able to check into our hotel, because the pastors had not worked things out with the clerk yet. I went to the church to check it out. It was in a storefront. Guess what I saw a couple of doors down. The local GOP headquarters. On the other side, there was a pizzeria. Anyone who knows me will understand how funny this is.

As I walked across the parking lot, a stranger waved his hand at a car and started talking to me as though he had known me all his life. He pointed out that the car had an Obama banner inside it, and it was parked by the GOP headquarters. I smiled and told him it was offensive. It was so strange to be among friendly people, so soon after arriving. Miami is not like this.

I met the pastor. Like my current pastor, he’s a former Coral Gables employee. They both did something involved with codes or zoning. I forget what. That’s hilarious. These people have always been my sworn enemies. You can’t do anything in Coral Gables without ten permits. I call the place “Karl Goebbels.”

They sent us out to evangelize. I hate evangelizing. After a few minutes of listening to me talk about Christianity, most people become convinced that it’s the one religion they need to cross off their lists. And I always wonder if I’m going to get payback for refusing to open the door for peddlers and Jehovah’s Witnesses. But I will evangelize if my church asks. We broke into teams and drove to a seedy area and knocked on doors. Nobody punched us. One lady gave a highly response to one of our teams. She asked if we prayed in tongues, and a volunteer told her we did it “all day.” The lady said she had been praying for such a church for a long time. She was thrilled to hear about it.

Back at the church, we ate lunch, and I talked to my friend George. He’s a member of my church. He’s a minister, although he’s not a paid employee, and he’s not full-time. He’s full of the Holy Spirit. When I first showed up at the church (in Miami, not Winter Haven), he told me he had a word for me. He had received it before he knew me, probably after a friend had told him I might switch to New Dawn. He told me that, even though my life up to that point had seemed chaotic, I had been on a path God had chosen for me, and it was all preparation for the things I would have to do. He said I was headed for a financial breakthrough, and that I shouldn’t worry.

In Winter Haven, we talked some more, and he said things were going to blossom in my life. God was removing the obstacles and hindrances.

He’s right about that. I’m already seeing it in my prayer life and my music. Moving from my old church to New Dawn was, itself, an example of God’s restoration and liberation. I had begun to feel like a slave in my old church, building bricks for the Pharaoh’s self-aggrandizing monuments. At New Dawn, I receive all sorts of good things, and I make progress. I hear prophecy. I get new supernatural tools that break down walls. I change, sometimes during the course of one service.

I went back to the hotel and checked in, and I worked on my music for a while. I started checking the weather. It didn’t look good. They were calling for 30 mph winds in Miami, as of 6 a.m. Sunday morning. Gusts would be in the fifties. You can’t drive in that. I started to feel that I was not going to be able to stay, unless I wanted to be stuck up there until Tuesday. I conferred with other volunteers, and I called my dad. He was down here rigging his enormous boat up for the wind, without my help. If I could not get back in the morning, he would be down here alone, possibly without power. And he would have to feed my birds.

I let everyone know what was going on, and I checked out around three hours after checking in. The church was going to have an inaugural service in the afternoon, and I didn’t want to miss it. And I had a list of homes I wanted to drive by. But I prayed for guidance, and I believed the Holy Spirit was telling me to go. I expected the others to follow me after the service.

The drive home was astonishing. I went through the sugar country. It was a nicer drive than the coast route. But the thing that amazed me was the presence of God. I turned off the stereo and spent the whole trip in prayer. I kept feeling God’s power and presence rushing through me, scaring me at times. Sometimes I just talked to God. Sometimes I asked for things I believed would advance his goals. And his faith–not mine–kept telling me the things I mentioned were DONE. God had put his seal on them. It was overwhelming. I told God I felt that as of that day, my time as a citizen of earth had ended permanently. Eventually you reach a point where you are so far into the kingdom, you know (and feel in your heart) that you can’t turn back. And you are so disgusted by the way the world is, you wouldn’t want to turn back if you could.

As it turned out, the storm was not as bad as predicted. I drove home in clear weather. There was a strong wind south of Lake Okeechobee, but I didn’t see real rain or gusts until I hit South Miami. I felt bad about abandoning my church, but given the information that was available at the time, I had done the intelligent thing. And I had asked God, and I had obeyed what I perceived to be his answer.

The storm has been very strange. It didn’t come as close to Miami as the forecasters said it would, and it took longer for the winds to arrive. And the intensity has taken a long time to build. It was supposed to be calmer this morning than it was last night, but it’s worse. It’s really nasty right now. Torrential rain with gusts that push the rain sideways. It’s supposed to quit this afternoon, but I’m wondering.

They’re saying Isaac may wipe out New Orleans, and that its arrival will disrupt a perversion celebration known as Southern Decadence. Gay men put on their own version of Mardi Gras, and they expose themselves in the street and so on. Some preachers think the storm is a punishment from God. Of course, New Orleans citizens see the festival as a big economic boost. A plus, not a curse.

Perry Stone pointed out that “Katrina” comes from a root meaning “to cleanse.” The word “catharsis” comes from the same source. I know a young man from New Orleans. He says the post-Katrina atmosphere is different, as though God really did cleanse the place. Maybe there is something to it. “Isaac” means “laughter.” Not something I would want to think about, in the wake of cleansing, in a city that continues to welcome sin. If I were rebuilding a city, I would not want to find out that God was laughing at my efforts. Psalm 2 says God laughed at Satan and his principalities when they crucified Jesus. They thought they were breaking God’s bands off of themselves, but in reality, they were nailing themselves to the cross.

In 2005, Southern Decadence had to be cancelled because Katrina arrived two days before the festival’s opening date.

It’s funny that gays are so candid about what they’re doing. They’re not even trying to disguise it. They’re calling the festival what it is: “decadence.” How much more open can rebellion be? I guess soon we’ll be seeing things like, “The San Francisco Blasphemy and Hate Festival.” Once your conscience gets seared, you lose all perspective.

I can’t cover everything that has happened since my last blog post, but this will have to do for today.

Will, but no Grace

Friday, June 1st, 2012

Emmanuel Goldstein, at Your Service

Today someone accused me of being homophobic. And he (or she) was very nasty and rude about it. I made a joke about “trying not to feel gay” in a fabric store, and this person ordered me to keep my “homophobic” comments to myself!

In a way, it’s funny. Obviously, the remark was not hostile toward gays. If it is, La Cage aux Folles (“The Bird Cage”) and Will & Grace are hateful, as is The Ambiguously Gay Duo.

In another way, it’s not funny. The accusation itself was hateful, and it reflects the increasing boldness with which the enemies of Christianity are spewing their rage.

Satan managed to kick the Holy Spirit out of the church around 1700 years ago, and for centuries, the church was no real threat to him. The power was gone. The courage was gone. Look at the lists of the fruit and the gifts of the Spirit. All those things were gone from the church, except in piddling quantities. We were disarmed.

A little over a century ago, the Holy Spirit returned, in spite of our foolishness, and since then, Christians have been getting more powerful. Not all Christians. Only the charismatics. We should have realized God was preparing us for battle. The world is becoming a sea of filth. Humanity is turning against real Christians. Without the power of the Holy Spirit, the imbalance in power would put a quick end to us, and to God’s assault on Satan’s kingdom.

Now we have homosexual “pastors.” Not just the closeted kind we’re used to seeing. They are out in the open. We have “scholars” who twist scripture in order to justify perversion. The Old Testament and the New Testament condemn homosexual activity, and contrary to what the revisionists say, the criticism isn’t just directed to acts performed in rituals. It is a blanket condemnation.

It’s surprising, but it’s starting to look like this is going to be one of the biggest weapons that will be used against us when martyrdom returns. When unbelievers gas us and shoot us and loot our homes, this will be one of their excuses. Many of them will call themselves “Christians,” and they’ll say they’re doing God’s work. I guarantee it.

Do I hate gays? Of course not. Could anyone hate Nathan Lane or that kid who played Doogie Howser? I know some people feel visceral anger because other people are having gay sex. I don’t feel that way. When I was young, I thought homosexuality was perfectly fine. I have never felt rage toward gays. I admit, homosexuality can be funny, and the picture of two men entwined in passion will always be amusing to me, but that’s not hate.

Gays themselves realize how funny they can be, as The Bird Cage and Will & Grace prove. They joke about themselves constantly. Joking about feeling gay in a fabric store is not evidence of hate.

That doesn’t matter. People who point these things out will be told that the issue of whether a joke is hate depends on who made it. By that standard, all Christians (real Christians who do not endorse homosexuality) will be considered guilty, and persecution will be excused and encouraged. The presumption of guilt will not be rebuttable.

Here’s a funny thing about causes. People use them to justify cruelty and viciousness. Think of the PETA nuts who throw blood on women. Lots of people are against harming animals, but only a few use that conviction as an excuse to cause suffering. Homosexual rights constitute a cause, and that cause is already being used to ground hateful words and actions. It will get worse.

Today someone pointed out a scripture to me. Revelation 21:6. In it, God tells us the cowardly will “have their part” in hell, which is a lake of burning brimstone. Who are the cowards these days? Seeker-sensitive Christians. The people who let homosexuality (and positive thinking and cult methods and greed and…) into the church.

That’s sobering.

Hell is a hard thing to understand. The Bible doesn’t speak clearly about it. We know it exists. We know certain supernatural beings will be tormented in it forever. We know ordinary people will be placed there. What isn’t clear to me is whether it’s permanent for everyone. The Jews believe hell is a place where people go to be cleansed, and that we will not be punished forever. I’m inclined to believe that, and it makes me think there will probably be many self-proclaimed Christians there.

We know God punishes Christians. The Rapture will only take some of us, and the rest will be here during the Tribulation, when God’s ameliorating presence will be gone from the earth. If God would permit that, I don’t think it’s a big stretch to say some of us will suffer after we die.

If that’s right, it would make sense of Revelation 21:6.

In any case, you don’t want to be cowardly. Displeasing God and helping his enemies are bad things to do, with serious consequences for you and your house. The world is rapidly polarizing, and you don’t want to end up on the wrong side. God is the worst enemy you can imagine. There is absolutely nothing you can do to escape his anger, if he is determined to make you suffer.

How are we going to stand, when society changes and we are seen as parasites and troublemakers? When our Kristallnacht comes, how will we get the courage to affirm our Christianity before the mobs?

The answer is the Holy Spirit. He puts God’s character in us, little by little, as we pray in tongues, fast, read the word, and strive to listen and obey. Peter denied Jesus three times, after seeing him work miracles. That was before he received the fulness of the Holy Spirit. After Pentecost, he became a different man. He watched the Romans crucify his wife, and then he followed her, and all he had to do to survive was to renounce Jesus. Only the Holy Spirit could account for the change in him.

You can’t stand without the weapons and armor of God, and if you check the book of Ephesians, where these things are described, you will see that it refers to prayer in the Spirit. If you were born brave, that’s wonderful, but most people aren’t like that. God’s help is available, and we are expected–required–to accept it.

These things may sound crazy. So be it. I’m going to die, and it’s not going to be that long, because I’m already middle-aged. I can’t concern myself unduly with what people think of me here on earth. I have my future to think about. You are dying, too. You need to ask yourself how much you are willing to pay for temporary peace and approval from misguided human beings.

Corruption is already in the Spirit-filled churches. We teach greed and pride as though they were virtues. Other garbage will creep in through the cracks we have already made. One of these days, we’re going to see someone like Joel Osteen stand up and say he was wrong about gays or abortion or some similar issue. People who want to fill stadiums (and their pockets) will make up whatever lies they have to. They never cared about the flock. The desperation that drives them will eventually take control, unless they get into the Spirit.

Joshua was given to us as a symbol of Spirit-filled believers. He went forward to possess his inheritance–his place in the Promised Land–and before he did, he said this: “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” You are going to make a choice, even if you do so by refusing to choose. You will be rewarded, with good or evil, depending on that choice. I say go forward with the Spirit. You can’t make it on your own, no matter how many positive thinking preachers you listen to.

Let the dogs bark. What’s right is right, and foolishness will not stand forever. Better to be slandered and insulted now, by simpletons, than to be blamed justly by God himself.

Homosexuality is wrong. If that looks like hate to you, it’s in your mind, not my heart. I don’t hate gays, gamblers, drunks, prostitutes, the greedy, the gluttonous, potheads, or anyone else who harms himself through iniquity. Believe it or don’t. God shares his power and his help with me every day, and he helps others through me. I am not giving that up so I can be your pal.

Birthdays

Monday, May 28th, 2012

Milk and Honey for Some, Gall and Vinegar for Others

It looks like I have made a big mistake. I accused Steve Munsey of pushing a bogus doctrine involving the “seven blessings of Pentecost.” I apparently got a couple of things screwed up.

This particular doctrine may not come from Munsey. I believed it did, because he pushes the notion that we get blessings from cash offerings on Passover, Pentecost, and Yom Kippur. He claims we get seven blessings on Passover and Yom Kippur (which he wrongly thinks is the Feast of Trumpets). But it’s not clear that he pushed seven Pentecost blessings.

There are so many crooks and scoundrels in the charismatic church, it can be very hard to keep them separate in your mind.

David Cerullo claims you will get these jim-dandy blessings if you bribe the Lord on Pentecost:

1. An angel of God will be assigned to protect you and lead you to your miracles.
2. God will be an enemy to your enemies.
3. He will prosper you.
4. God will take sickness away from you.
5. You will not die before your appointed time.
6. Increase and an inheritance will be yours.
7. What the enemy has stolen will be returned to you.

Here are the relevant scriptures, presented in the order of the blessings they supposedly ground. They are all from Exodus 23:

1. Verse 23
2. Verse 22
3. Verse 25
4. Verse 25
5. Verse 26
6. Verses 29 and 31

David Cerullo is not Steve Munsey. Oddly, however, he is offering Munsey’s seven Passover blessings in exchange for Pentecost cash. The above list is identical to Munsey’s Passover fantasies.

Charismatic gold-diggers like to plagiarize moneymaking schemes, so once one of them comes up with a juicy idea, the rest tend to glom onto it. Paula White and Benny Hinn are all over the Munsey stuff. I may have misattributed Cerullo’s seven Pentecost blessings to Munsey, and Cerullo clearly stole them from him in the first place.

My old church is not pushing the seven blessings. I was wrong about that. Here are the five blessings they currently offer:

1. God will break the debt currently hanging over your life – LEVITICUS 25:25-28
2. God will save and restore your whole family together in the Lord – LEVITICUS 25:39-42
3. God will reveal Himself to you in a new way – EXODUS 34:29
4. There will be a redistribution of wealth – LEVITICUS 23:22
5. You will have power over weakness – ACTS 1:8

I’m not completely sure what I should apologize for. Steve Munsey DOES push unscriptural Pentecost offerings, and he couples them with imaginary blessings, but I got the list wrong. I think. I’m not even sure of that, because of the content-grabbing that goes on amongst the jackals.

If anyone can figure out what I did wrong, I will apologize for it. I think that’s fair.

Yesterday was a remarkable day. It was Pentecost, and a friend of mine had a birthday celebration. His wife rigged up a surprise party for him at her mother’s house, and she convinced him she and her friends were actually having a Mary Kay party. As a distraction, he was encouraged to visit the gun range with a bunch of men from church. I was invited to both events.

In the morning, I prayed before church, as always. I spent over half an hour praying in tongues. Ordinarily, God’s power rises up in me when I do this, and by the time I’m done, I don’t need coffee. I feel alert and ready to take on the day. But yesterday I was still a little pooped, and I still had to pray with my understanding and then get up and get ready for church.

I arrived at church late, and worship was over. People were talking about the pastor. He was born on the same day as my friend, and folks were going to the stage to say good things about him. It’s good to honor people, but at that moment, this was not what I needed. I wished I had gotten there sooner.

He got up to give his sermon, but he couldn’t do it. He started the worship up again. He felt that God wanted him to do that. Everything cranked up again, and we fought until we felt God’s presence. It must have taken forty-five minutes.

He called my friend’s wife up to the stage, and he told her it was her day to receive the gift of tongues. He laid hands on her, and a bunch of people prayed, and before long, out it came! I hadn’t realized she needed it. Some people take a while to get it. It was exciting to see her begin her new life. I knew the changes it would make in her life.

After some more moves of the Spirit, the pastor told us there was no time left for the sermon. We would hear it next week. The Holy Spirit had to have his way, and I’m glad he did, because it got me where I wanted to be spiritually (after the problems I had had earlier), and my friend’s wife received a huge blessing. I went up to her and said, “Happy birthday.”

My friend Alonzo rode with me to IHOP for lunch with the other men. I made a real connection with the birthday boy’s brother-in-law. It turns out he’s a bona-fide food nut. Then we drove to the range, and Alonzo and I got to encourage each other and share insights God had given us.

I really didn’t want to go to the party. It was late. But I felt I should drop by, so I made an appearance. As I drove down I-95, the Holy Spirit hit me so hard, I felt like a basketball being pumped up with air. I was overwhelmed, and I wondered what it meant.

When arrived, I was very surprised to see other former Armorbearers from the old church. Two men who had been in leadership positions were there. The birthday boy himself is a former leader of the Armorbearers.

I was so happy to see them; I hadn’t seen one of them in weeks. I thought he had moved to another city. His wife and kids were there. I got reacquainted with his son, who used to work with me in the church kitchen, making pizza.

We ended up gathering around the pastor, telling him all the things we knew about organizing volunteers. We gave him the advice our former pastor had heard and rejected. He was grateful for it. He listened out of eagerness, not out of a desire to let us talk just so we would feel we had gotten a chance to speak. He wasn’t weighing our words to see how he could turn things to his benefit.

I spoke to several people from the old church. We discussed the way talented people had been shoved aside, ignored, obstructed, driven out, and treated disrespectfully. I gave my unvarnished opinion, which was that the old church was really an apparatus intended for the sole purpose of promoting the family that ran it. And I said it was remarkable how they wasted talent in their pursuit of church growth and self-promotion, because had they made good use of the people God had given them, they would have achieved the things they desired. That’s the ironic thing. They had all sorts of capable people waiting to work for them, and they consistently promoted insiders who were incompetent, while keeping able people out of the jobs they were created to do.

We had wonderful food. The sister of the guest of honor is a baker. She is starting her own company. She made a flawless birthday cake decorated like a Green Bay Packers jersey, and she surrounded it with all sorts of related items, like cupcakes and other confections. I couldn’t believe she made it herself. And there was a big buffet of Latin food.

We made plans. We talked about the things we wanted to do. And the pastor was all for it. He was not interested in promoting himself. He was looking to serve the Holy Spirit, using the abilities of all the people around him. He was approachable. He was not dismissive. He had time to talk. We didn’t have to measure our words in order to avoid upsetting him. We knew he would listen. It was as though a dam had broken.

I’m a lawyer, writer, and cook. I have tons of tools. The old church made me a security guard. We had one of the finest flamenco-style guitarists I’ve ever seen. They had him frying chicken wings and playing for little kids. We had a worship leader who went to Ohio State on a vocal scholarship. One day the pastor’s son–a nice guy who needs some professional vocal coaching–said he wanted to get involved in worship, and since then, the other guy has been teaching children. I could go on and on.

That was the attitude at the old place. With the new pastor, there was a different atmosphere. The walls had been broken down. There was opportunity to go forward and get some things done.

When I got home, I thought about the powerful presence of God I had felt, and I wondered what it had meant. Then I realized something. God had shown me a picture of heaven.

In heaven, foolish, hardheaded, selfish, hypocritical, arrogant people will be out of the way. They will not be present. They will not obstruct. They will not steal positions God anointed other people to fill. There will be no corruption and no nepotism. Our leader, Jesus, will be available to talk to us. He will encourage us. He will give us the right jobs. He will give us respect and support. We will succeed in doing the things he created us to do. Frustration will be back on earth, with the stiff-necked, carnal, greedy Christians who would not listen to the Holy Spirit. God will heap terrible obstacles on them, as a reward for the chains they put on his children.

We know that when we arrive in heaven, people we know will be there to greet us, just as my friends were waiting for me at the party. And there will be a feast–the marriage supper of the Lamb–just as there were food and drink at the party.

In heaven, things will work. That’s a succinct way to put it. I believe God used the party to show me what it would be like.

You have to live in this imperfect world, and you will never belong to a perfect organization, but some organizations are under Satan’s control to a very great extent, and you should not hang around hoping to fix them from the inside. Jesus taught us that it was wrong to try. He said we should shake the dust off our feet and move on, taking our blessings with us, just as he will do during the Rapture. He will shake the flesh (dust) off his feet (us) and take us to a place where we will be appreciated and allowed to succeed.

My old church was corrupt. I may as well be honest. They suppressed the Holy Spirit. They talked about helping the poor, but they didn’t do very much. They kissed up to celebrities, rich people, and politicians, while blowing off little people with needs. They taught self-help instead of Holy Spirit transformation. They disrespected and hobbled the servants God sent them. There is a limit to the success a godly person can have in a place like that. I know; Joseph made it in Pharaoh’s court. But he was the exception, not the rule. And after he died, his people were oppressed and murdered until they had to leave.

You may call this gossip, but I disagree. Gossip involves airing out confidences. It involves slander. It is done with malice. It serves no constructive purpose. There is nothing wrong with exposing the public behavior of the people controlling a confused church, especially when they should be aware they’re screwing up. Someone has to speak up. Jesus did it. John the Baptist did it. Jude did it. Don’t make me make a comprehensive list. You can’t accuse me of exposing your dirty laundry when you already have it hanging on your porch.

I thank God for what he showed me yesterday. It motivates me to carry on. Sooner or later, he rewards people. For good, but also, sadly, for evil.

I Looked Into the Trap, Ray

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Thass a Big Twinkie

I know exactly what this is. It’s a sloar. And those things inside it are shubs and zulls.

Additional info:

I am a Mole

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

I Leak my Own Sensitive Information for the Sake of Efficiency

In case anyone is monitoring my website here are a few facts. It would be easier to call me and ask, but anyway:

1. I was not the first person in my social circle to leave my church.

2. Several people left or chose new positions before I took off.

3. I did not tell any of them to leave.

4. I was surprised when they left, because I did not know it was going to happen.

5. I do not know why every person left. Some told me. Others did not.

6. I did not tell them to go to New Dawn, because I did not know it existed.

7. No one told me to leave.

8. No one told me to try New Dawn. I asked people what they thought about it, and it sounded pretty good, so I decided to take a look.

9. More people are planning to leave or considering leaving, so yes, it will get worse. I have not injected them with drugs or put implants in their brains. I have no control over what they do. I did not put the idea of leaving in their heads. I don’t even know who all of them are.

10. I did recruit two friends.

Hope this saves you some time.

Improbable Cause

Friday, April 20th, 2012

Zimmerman Prosecutor Fail

I watched the last 20 minutes or so of George Zimmerman’s bond hearing today.

You can get bogged down in the details and sniping, but it makes more sense to examine the dispositive issues.

In order to convict George Zimmerman, the state has to prove certain things. If Zimmerman did not start a fight, and he shot to prevent a forcible felony (aggravated assault or aggravated battery), or if he was in actual, reasonable fear of severe bodily harm, he walks.

People think you can only shoot if you’re in reasonable apprehension of severe bodily injury or death. That’s wrong. Look at the statute. You can shoot to prevent a forcible felony, including aggravated assault, IF you have clean hands. If someone is committing a forcible felony, you are PRESUMED to be in fear of death or great bodily harm.

A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.

That’s a cut-and-paste. Look at the last part of it.

Here is the definition of “forcible felony”:

Forcible felony.—“Forcible felony” means treason; murder; manslaughter; sexual battery; carjacking; home-invasion robbery; robbery; burglary; arson; kidnapping; aggravated assault; aggravated battery; aggravated stalking; aircraft piracy; unlawful throwing, placing, or discharging of a destructive device or bomb; and any other felony which involves the use or threat of physical force or violence against any individual.

The state has to prove Martin was not in the process of committing a forcible felony when he was shot, AND that Zimmerman was not in reasonable fear of great bodily harm.

I now believe they have no chance. If the state has a bombshell that will convict Zimmerman, they haven’t shown it yet, and they have made it clear they can’t prove Zimmerman was the aggressor.

Sometimes it’s good to separate known facts from opinions and disputed facts, so let’s look at facts that can’t be reargued.

Fact (admitted by the state under oath):

1. Zimmerman and Martin fought.

2. Zimmerman had lacerations on the back of his head, consistent with having an assailant beat his head against a sidewalk.

3. There are no witnesses to the start of the fight.

4. The state has no evidence that Zimmerman was not attacked.

5. Martin was shot up close, possibly with the gun barrel against him.

You don’t really need more than that. Again, the burden of proof is on the state, and it’s very high. They can’t win by proving Zimmerman COULD have been the aggressor. They have to show that it’s the only explanation a reasonable person could accept.

Zimmerman only has to show that his version COULD be true. That’s it.

If you can’t prove Zimmerman started the fight, you can’t prove Martin wasn’t committing (or about to commit) a forcible felony. The beating took place. That can’t be disputed. If Zimmerman was attacked and Martin was beating his head on a concrete sidewalk, Zimmerman had every reason to believe the attack would progress at least to aggravated assault, and possibly to aggravated battery or murder. That’s just common sense.

If Martin attacked, it triggers the statute, and that would end the case instantly.

If Martin had merely punched him, there could be doubt. But he beat Zimmerman’s head against the sidewalk, opening two long gashes, and he broke his nose. These acts may constitute a felony in and of themselves, and coupled with Martin’s persistence (shown by the number of injuries) they definitely establish the intent to commit a felony.

The only issue is who started it. And the state has affirmatively averred it has no evidence proving Zimmerman is lying about that particular fact. With no other evidence, his word is the most powerful guide the jury has.

What if Martin had been shot from a distance? It would cast doubt on Zimmerman’s story. You can shoot to put an end to a felony, but you can’t shoot once your attacker gets up and runs off. What if Zimmerman had no injuries, or the injuries were not consistent with a battery? He would have a hard time showing a felony had been in progress. But the injuries are there, and the state says they conform to his story.

What if a witness had seen Zimmerman attack Martin? That would be powerful evidence that he committed a crime. But no such witness exists. The state says so, under oath. Witnesses heard people argue. One witness said one “figure” chased another past her home, and she can’t identify them (and chasing is not a crime). Another witness saw Zimmerman on his back under Martin. No matter how you slice it, the state has a hard row to hoe.

The cops say Zimmerman claimed Martin covered Zimmerman’s mouth and nose, and that it was at this point that Zimmerman grabbed his gun and fired. The prosecutor say they have evidence that Zimmerman is wrong. That’s fine, but it wouldn’t affect the outcome. You can say something that isn’t true and still be innocent. Maybe Zimmerman stretched the truth or even lied, but if Martin was on top of him, and Martin was the aggressor, the state loses.

Remember, Zimmerman hasn’t been charged with perjury. Murder is the charge. He can lie all day and still be innocent of murder, as long as the physical evidence backs him up, and there are no witnesses to contradict him.

The longer this case goes on, the more disgusted I become. The arrest and charges are the result of the public outcry, not a proper investigation and determination of probable cause. The governor denies this, but look at the facts. Zimmerman was free and in the clear until people started raising hell. There was no chance of an arrest. It’s amazing that the governor would tell such an obvious lie. It is definitely a lie; there is no other explanation.

I doubt Zimmerman will be tried. If O’Mara is any kind of lawyer, he’ll get this thing dismissed. The judge may be a politician, and if he is, he’ll rule in favor of the state. I guess that’s the state’s only hope. But they still have to get a jury to buy their theory.

Anything is possible. Shocking new evidence could come to light, proving Zimmerman’s guilt. But right now, by its own admission, the state has nothing.

The Perils of Gossip

Monday, March 26th, 2012

No Evidence Required; No Appeal Possible

More and more exculpatory evidence is coming out in the Zimmerman/Martin case.

This is only evidence. It’s not necessarily proven. But the burden of proof is on Florida, not George Zimmerman. He doesn’t have to prove a thing.

1. The police say Zimmerman was found with lacerations on the back of his head, plus a broken nose.

2. The police say Zimmerman had grass stains on the back of his shirt, and his shirt was wet in back.

3. Martin’s size has been upped from 140 pounds to 150 pounds and 6’3″, and Zimmerman’s height is said to be 5′ 9″. I’m wondering what Martin’s weight will turn out to be, after the medical examiner reports. The figure of 150 is pretty low for someone that tall, especially a football player.

4. Martin’s girlfriend’s remarks suggest Martin accosted Zimmerman (Martin spoke first).

5. Zimmerman claims Martin was trying to grab Zimmerman’s gun.

6. A witness saw Martin slamming Zimmerman’s head against the sidewalk repeatedly.

7. A witness named Austin Brown says that in the moments before the shooting, Zimmerman was lying on the ground crying for help.

8. Zimmerman told police he was on his way back to his vehicle when Martin accosted him.

9. Zimmerman said Martin initiated physical contact by delivering a sudden punch which broke Zimmerman’s nose.

People are saying the “stand your ground” law applies. I don’t see it. It looks like Martin got mad, chased Zimmerman, and attacked him. It also appears pretty clear that Martin used deadly force. Slamming someone’s head on concrete repeatedly will eventually kill them.

If the facts are as they appear to be, Zimmerman didn’t stand his ground. To “stand your ground” is to stay where you are, when you have the option of leaving. If Zimmerman was on his back, helpless, with a taller assailant beating him, he could not leave. That would mean this is a very routine self-defense case. Not only that, it would show that our laws worked exactly as they should have. If the published evidence is not misleading, Martin was a violent criminal, and Zimmerman was a model citizen trying to protect his community.

That’s a far cry from what we heard last week. And I saw it coming. I knew it was stupid to judge this case before the facts were published. Nevertheless, everyone from Jeb Bush to Al Sharpton has condemned Zimmerman without trial, and they have elevated Martin to a status resembling sainthood, when he may turn out to be a common thug. We now know that he was in Sanford because his school suspended him for possession of drug paraphernalia. He was found with a bag that had contained marijuana. At the age of 14.

Even at this point, I’m not going to judge. Lawsuits and investigations have many twists and turns. Things look very good for Zimmerman, but I am not as close to the evidence as the professionals are. I’m not going to repeat the sin I criticized. Maybe Zimmerman will be convicted of something. Maybe even murder. Maybe a recording will pop up, and we’ll hear Zimmerman tell his buddies he’s going to kill a black kid for fun. But I’ll bet he is never arrested for homicide. Obama’s feds may try to nail him on some other offense, but my best guess is that the authorities will realize they can’t touch him, because he did nothing wrong.

The claims of police bias aren’t holding up, either. I’ve read the police report. It appears that they originally intended to charge Zimmerman with manslaughter, but the facts led them to conclude he was innocent, so he was not arrested. If they showed up and found a live non-black “gunman” and a dead black teenager, and they fully intended to charge the non-black man, they can’t be credibly accused of anti-black animus. And we don’t know the races of the responding officers. Won’t it be interesting if one or more of them are black?

The Miami Herald has demonstrated what this case is really about. Sorry to say it, but I was right about that, too. They put a huge story up in Sunday’s paper, with a half-page staged photo full of crime scene tape. The story was not about the Zimmerman case. It was about our “dangerous” self-defense laws (which–remember–appear to have no application to this case). From the word “go,” the press’s dishonest coverage has been aimed at getting the “Castle Doctrine,” “Stand Your Ground,” and concealed-carry laws repealed by the legislature or gutted by judicial interpretation. That’s all the folks at the Herald care about. If the ghetto has to burn, and if black people have to die or become felons or lose their homes or jobs, that’s okay with our liberal nannies, as long as gun control increases.

Thanks to the press and people like Al Sharpton, we have hundreds of thousands of people who firmly believe Martin was martyred, and they are going to expect payback, and it’s probably not going to come. What then? Will TV heads spend as much time correcting their slanders as they did publishing them? Yeah. Right. They’re famous for that. We all remember how they trampled each other, trying to get to the cameras so they could correct the claim that George Bush lied about uranium ore.

I think violence is inevitable. If the authorities admit Zimmerman didn’t break the law, there will be trouble. It may be full-blown rioting, and it may be individual acts of hate and racism, but barring an extraordinary turn of events, it will happen. And the liars and gossips will be guilty of the very thing of which they falsely accused Zimmerman. The blood of the dead will be on their hands. But bloody hands are nothing new to some of them. Certainly not Al Sharpton, who seems to think rioting is a healthy way of expressing dissent.

If rioting comes, white people will sit safely in their homes, and people of color will die and suffer. Great work, liberal press. Is that your plan for helping minorities? Gun-hating journalists appear willing to sacrifice black lives and use well-meaning black people as pawns, as long as it advances the left’s agenda.

I wish people would shut up and let qualified professionals interpret the law and the facts. I’m a lawyer, and law is not simple. I had to get a doctorate in order to get a license to practice law. If you’re not a lawyer, you have no business arguing with me or any other legal professional. For that matter, most lawyers should be quiet. I’ve noticed that a lot of them are weighing in without thinking. An education is no advantage unless you put it to use.

Even though I’m a lawyer, in matters like this, I will defer to people who have actually studied the case and the law. I’ve looked it over briefly, but there is no way I’d ask a client to rely on the smattering of work I’ve done. If I were working for money, I’d get the books out for a few days and THEN talk. So while I’m light years ahead of 95% of the people who comment in the media, what I’m writing here doesn’t begin to live up to a real standard of professionalism. It’s just idle commentary.

It’s shocking how few people understand these things. Ignorant lay people are spewing worthless opinions so devoid of merit, they remind me of what Wolfgang Pauli said: “That’s not even WRONG.” Sometimes an argument is so stupid, it’s actually counterproductive to acknowledge it. It’s like trying to have a rational discussion with Charles Manson. This is why we are told not to cast our pearls before swine. It’s why we spank toddlers instead of debating with them.

I feel like we’re on a ship headed for a mine at three knots, and no one cares.

Half Cocked

Monday, March 19th, 2012

The Judge, Jury, and Jailer Will be Back After This Commercial Message

I wonder if anyone in the Blogosphere is paying attention to the Trayvon Martin case. It’s a classic example of prosecution by media.

A kid named Trayvon Martin was visiting relatives in Sanford, Florida. He went out to get candy and a drink. On the walk home, he was spotted by neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman, who was armed. Zimmerman followed him, thinking he might be a criminal. There was a scuffle. Zimmerman shot and killed him.

Zimmerman is Hispanic. Martin is black.

Naturally, the press is crucifying Zimmerman. Because there is strong evidence that he committed a murder? No. Because he is now the face of a good law liberals hate.

Under Florida law, you don’t have to run away when you’re attacked. If it’s legal for you to be where you are, you don’t have to jump into the ocean or out in front of traffic. You don’t have to leave your own home or leap across train tracks while your assailant laughs and sees how far he can make you run. You’re allowed to kill him without running. It’s not your job to exert yourself and subject yourself to more danger in order to save the criminal’s life. That’s just common sense. If the law were otherwise, criminals would be permitted to chase you all day, and while the law would offer you some protection, it would be of no practical use. Few people are going to prosecute criminals for picking on them and chasing them around, when no physical harm is done.

Liberals hate this law because it puts teeth in the centuries-old right to self-defense. Liberals like punishing law-abiding victims, and they want to protect stupid, violent people.

Because of their bias against self-defense, liberals are all over Zimmerman, and they’re lying about him in order to stir up the public. I feel very sorry for him. It seems like no one is defending him.

Zimmerman may be a murderer, but the truth is, we don’t know that, and the facts so far suggest he is not. We should be allowing law enforcement to make a careful investigation instead of jumping to moronic, unfair conclusions. We are supposed to have courts in the United States. We are supposed to investigate shootings and use reason to determine the rights of those involved. Zimmerman is in danger of going to jail simply because talking heads don’t like the laws of the State of Florida. That’s a terrible situation to be in.

Here are the facts.

1. Martin was unarmed.

2. Martin was walking around Zimmerman’s neighborhood.

3. Zimmerman followed Martin, believing he might be casing the houses.

4. Martin approached Zimmerman.

5. There was a fight.

6. A witness saw Zimmerman on the ground under Martin.

7. After the fight, Zimmerman had grass stains on his back, and his face was bloody.

8. No one saw the shooting.

9. There is a recording of someone screaming for help, followed by a gunshot, but the recording is of very poor quality.

10. Zimmerman claims the person screaming was him.

That’s really all we have. The Miami Herald is adding in inflammatory garbage. They pointed out that Zimmerman called the police a lot. Hello? He’s a neighborhood watch captain. That’s what they do. Other media outlets are pointing out that Zimmerman was once arrested for battery on a LEO and resisting arrest, but he was not prosecuted, and no one has bothered digging up the facts.

People are also saying that a police dispatcher told Zimmerman not to follow Martin, as if that has some relevance. First of all, it never happened. The dispatcher said, “Okay, we don’t need you doing that.” Second, the law doesn’t say police dispatchers have the authority to order you to avoid contact with people.

Why are we trying this case on TV and in the newspapers? What happened to due process? What is the point of having courts and investigators, if we’re going to let heartless media halfwits decide who goes to jail?

If there are facts that suffice to put this man in jail, presumably, the police will make an effort to uncover them. If not, he should be left alone.

It’s odd that “journalists” aren’t making more of Zimmerman’s ethnicity. He is clearly not white. Look at his photo some time. His father says he comes from a multi-racial family with many black members. He is part of a highly diverse social circle. He’s not a blue-eyed Aryan with swastikas tattooed on his forearms. It seems obvious that the press wants us to see this as a white-on-black execution, committed by a bigoted vigilante. So far, the only white people involved have been cops and journalists.

If someone knocks you down and starts beating you, you are allowed to shoot him. That would not change, even if Florida imposed a duty to retreat. You can’t retreat when you’re on your back. If Martin was beating Zimmerman, and Zimmerman feared severe INJURY (it doesn’t have to be death), then Zimmerman had the right to shoot. Believe it or not, even in 2012, you don’t have to allow criminals to beat you, just because you probably won’t be killed. We haven’t sunk that low yet. And if Martin was beating Zimmerman, he was a criminal.

If I had to guess–and that means GUESS, because unlike the other armchair detectives, I’m willing to admit I don’t know what happened–I would say Martin got mad because he was being followed. His race was probably one reason he was followed, and even if it wasn’t, it would be understandable for Martin to assume it was. He probably lost his temper and did something stupid. He probably attacked Zimmerman, not knowing he was armed. This is the most reasonable explanation.

Some people say Martin was screaming on the recording, begging for his life. If you listen to it, though, you can’t tell what the person is saying. It sounds like the word “help,” but it isn’t clear. And who is more likely to yell for help? A man lying on his back with a bloody face, like Zimmerman, or someone who is on top of him, inflicting damage?

If Martin is innocent, why is Zimmerman injured? Why were there grass stains on the back of his shirt? Did he beat himself up after he fired, in order to claim self-defense? His accusers have no explanation.

The only anti-Zimmerman explanation that makes any sense at all is this: Zimmerman attacked, Martin overcame him, and Zimmerman fired. That would not be self-defense, if Zimmerman’s attack was unprovoked. But why would he do that? What’s the point? Imagine yourself in his shoes. In thirty seconds, you can send the cops a cell phone photo and retreat to a safe distance to maintain observation. If you attack, you take a risk that your gun will be exposed to your attacker, and he’ll use it against you. There is no reason to do it, unless you’re an idiot.

Zimmerman might be an idiot. It could be that he made some kind of effort to restrain Martin, and Martin defended himself, and the fight escalated into an illegal shooting. And maybe Zimmerman somehow gave Martin time to scream for help repeatedly. But that’s a stretch.

Whatever the truth is, it should be uncovered through a professional investigation. It shouldn’t be buried under media hysteria and racist craziness. And we shouldn’t be ruining a man’s life in order to put our laws themselves on trial. If he’s guilty, he should pay. But I don’t trust ABC News to make that determination.

Breitbart’s Passing

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

Internet Milestone

I just looked at The Drudge Report and learned that Andrew Breitbart has died. It’s a big shock.

I was never a fan of his, and he didn’t like me at all. He even referred to me as “evil” in a private conversation. In spite of that, or really, because of that, I am taking a minute to say that I am sorry to hear the bad news, and that I will pray for his wife and kids. This has to be a terrible blow for them.

I assume the usual graceless career trolls will be out in force today, trumpeting his demise as a victory for their side. Usually, people on the right behave better than those on the left, but I do remember the vile things some conservatives said when Ted Kennedy died, so I hope people will take the gloating in stride and not let it affect their own behavior or attitudes.

GAME OVER

Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

The Carter II Curse Continues

It’s funny sometimes. Obama can’t win for losing.

On Super Bowl Sunday, we saw one of the things Chrysler did with the billion-plus dollars they took from us. They created a self-serving ad featuring Clint Eastwood. The narration started with, “It’s halftime in America.” Clint went on to tell us how hard times were; how badly things were going. And he said we were going to get off the canvas, suck it up, walk it off, improvise, adapt, overcome, et cetera. We were going to WIN, and the reason is…uh…okay, here it is: we’re AMERICA. Like that’s a magical word that prevents failure.

It turns out two people involved in the ad (Michael Tabtabai and Jimm Lasser) have a history of working for Obama. Big shock there. Clint Eastwood seems to think the ad was politically neutral, but it was clearly an effort to rehabilitate a failed Presidency. Unfortunately, it works better as a condemnation of everything Obama stands for.

Let’s go back to 1984, to the ad Chrysler plagiarized. Ronald Reagan was running for reelection. He was extremely popular. His strategies were working. He had a good record to run on. Life had been miserable under Carter. Interest rates were over 20%. Inflation was out of control. We were the laughingstock of the globe. Under Reagan, that had turned around, and everyone knew it. So his team put out an ad surprisingly similar to the Obama halftime ad. The theme was “morning in America.” We had come out from the dark night of the Carter administration. Here is the ad.

I’m not going to embed the Obama ad for comparison. You can find it online. You’ve probably seen it already. What a contrast! Reagan’s message? “Things are WAY better than they were four years ago. Let’s keep moving in the right direction!” Obama’s message? “Things STINK, but I’m only halfway done! Give me more time, and my long-discredited policies of socialism, borrowing, and central planning are going to work out!” After all, they worked so well in East Germany, the USSR, North Vietnam, North Korea, Cuba…

The difference is obvious. In the morning, the night is over. Your problems are behind you. A bright new day awaits. At halftime, you’re still in the middle of the battle, and under Obama, you’re LOSING!

Not only did Obama’s surrogates steal from Reagan; they implicitly admit Obama’s record is inferior!

Maybe Obama had nothing to do with this. Doesn’t matter. His team was behind it, in one form or another.

It’s hard for me to imagine a funnier way to condemn your performance as President. You never ask people, “Are you better off today than you were four years ago?” when the answer is “NO.”

Eastwood shouldn’t have said it was halftime. He should have said, “GAME OVER.” Or “sudden death.” Although that would have annoyed the Secret Service.

The obvious self-incriminating nature of the ad will blow over most people’s heads. People aren’t bright enough to pick up on irony. It has to be pointed out to them.

If I were Obama, I think I’d want to run off and hide. Maybe that’s why he goes on vacation eight times a year.

Freedom for Student Loan Cosigners

Friday, January 20th, 2012

RELEASE, not SETTLEMENT

I have a wonderful tip for people who cosign student loans.

If you call and ask the loan people what they’ll settle for, they’ll offer a reduced principle payoff figure–around 10% off the number on the notices they send you–but they’ll tell you it goes on your credit report. That’s obviously a bad idea. Do not use the words “settle” or “settlement” when you contact the lender, because this is what they’ll try to foist off on you.

Here’s what you want: a cosigner RELEASE. Be sure you use that word.

It’s hard to believe, but it’s true. If you make them an offer they like–and this offer can be way lower than the settlement figure–they’ll execute a total release, and they won’t tell the credit bureaus. Try 50% of the principal and see what happens. You might save thousands. If you cosigned for a someone who has no character and no intention of paying, this may be the best way out.

Check it out, if you’re on the hook because you tried to do some fool a favor. It makes no sense whatsoever, but it works. You pay much less, your credit is unaffected, AND you can tell them to quit calling you and sending you letters. They’ll keep going after the debtor, but you’ll be in the clear.

Hope this helps somebody. It’s not legal advice; it’s just something I happened to learn.