Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Political Odd-Couple

Political candidates pull the most transparently devious stunts, apparently under the impression that the public is so collectively gullible that it will swallow anything as authentic. Big news: According to the candidates themselves, Senator Clinton is hitting the campaign trail with Senator Obama (in tow?) in order to help him save the nation…BUT in the process Senator Obama will help the hapless Clinton recoup her $12.175 million "loan" to her campaign, just part of its deficit of some $22.5 million. It's hard to believe but she spent (or misspent) $207 million contributed by a gullible public in her lost cause. How many free lunches would that buy?

Who do they think the average Joe Blows are…idiots to be conned into believing that either of these candidates is interested in saving the nation? Senator Obama is interested in being president and is willing to "buy off" Clinton in order to get the female and union vote. Clinton is interested in getting her money back, hopefully with interest, and will swallow her pride in the process. The best thing that can happen for her is the defeat of Obama in November; otherwise, her chances in 2012 are out the window…unless Obama should be elected and then be as inept as Jimmy Carter. Thus, Obama will need to handle her very carefully. In their love-in in Unity, N.H., (unity – get it, giggle, giggle) on the 28th, they praised each other as something only marginally less than the gods and goddesses on Mt. Olympus…this, after explaining for months why each other shouldn't be president.

Or…take the latest Obama gaffe. In a recent performance he made mention of the fact that the mean republicans will come after him now, inducing FEAR in the populace because he is (gasp and three palpitations) a BLACK MAN. Even after his weird statement in Philadelphia in March about his own grandmother being a "typical white person," i.e., AFRAID of those of another color in her vicinity, he said something this dumb – playing the race card, never mind that his speech in Philadelphia the day before was billed as a speech about RACE, even though it in part was actually a defense of his then pastor, the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah Wright, a rabid anti-American.

Apparently thinking that the "average" American can't put two and two together and never checks the news, he made that weird statement in the Hollywood fundraiser a few weeks ago concerning the white folks in Pennsylvania regarding their FEAR of immigrants, and even placed it in the context of their being so uptight that they held their guns close-by and grasped their Bibles. Now…that's an attempt at genuine fear-mongering. So, according to Obama, is the "typical white person" a paranoiac so scared of anybody of another race that he/she becomes a recluse with a gun in one hand and the Bible in the other? The race-card again, this time combined with creating fear.

On 25 June, African-American pastors, led by the niece of Martin Luther King Jr., Dr. Alveda King, a former member of the Georgia state Legislature and the niece of Martin Luther King Jr., marched on the Democratic and Republican Party headquarters to demand that candidates refuse donations from Planned Parenthood. They believe that Planned Parenthood allows racist donors to designate their money to go to fund abortions of blacks. Planned Parenthood has outlined a $10 million campaign to fund candidates who support abortion. Dr. King mentioned in a TV interview on Fox News that of the 50 million abortions since 1973, 14 million (or 28%) have been performed on black women; however, they make up only 13% of the population.

According to Michael Gerson of the Washington Post (02 April 2008), "Obama's record on abortion is extreme. He opposed the ban on partial-birth abortion -- a practice a fellow Democrat, the late Daniel Patrick Moynihan, once called 'too close to infanticide.' Obama strongly criticized the Supreme Court decision upholding the partial-birth ban. In the Illinois state Senate, he opposed a bill similar to the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, which prevents the killing of infants mistakenly left alive by abortion. And now Obama has oddly claimed that he would not want his daughters to be 'punished with a baby' because of a crisis pregnancy -- hardly a welcoming attitude toward new life." Punished with a baby? Crisis pregnancy? Egad! Of all the candidates throughout the nation, who will receive the lion's share of that $10 million?

To get an indication of the elitism possessed by Obama, notice that he hired Clinton's former campaign manager to be chief of staff for the vice presidential nominee, whoever that will be. In other words, the veep nominee either won't have the good sense or the permission to hire his/her own chief of staff. Weird! In the Unity rally, Obama promised everything to every American but a piece of the moon and made it clear that under his power the nation will take over the cradle-to-the-grave existence of every citizen. Egad! By the time Labor Day rolls around, Obama will have said too much to be credible, and the average Joe Blow will understand.

And so it goes.

Jim Clark

Monday, June 16, 2008

The Church Homosexual-Problem

In the Anglican Church tradition, of which the American Episcopal Church is a part, the Lambeth Conference is held every ten years, the last one in the summer of 1998. Next month in Canterbury, England, at the University of Kent, Lambeth 2008 will be held. It will be attended by the more than 800 bishops of the Church, who will come from throughout the world, representing some 73 million congregants, the vast majority of them outside both England and the United States.

A 20-day affair, the conference will have as its focus these elements: Biblical interpretation / Hermeneutics; Ecumenical Management; Anglican identity, the role of bishops; Issues of Covenant; Listening Process (within the Communion); Engagement with other faiths; Evangelism and Mission; Gender and Sexuality; Relationships, Social and family relationships; HIV/Aids; Millennium Development Goals.

According to the BBC of 14 February 2007, the head of the Anglican Church and Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams has said that he fears that the Church may split over the row sparked by the appointment of openly gay US bishop, Gene Robinson, in 2003. Robinson is the bishop for all of New Hampshire. He and his "partner" were also "united" on 07 June in a civil ceremony, followed by a church celebration, the obvious implication being that they are now married, notwithstanding both biblical and legal principles obtaining that marriage can only be enacted by one man with one woman. The obvious conclusion to be drawn is that homosexual behavior is deemed by Robinson to be both biblically and legally sound.

Katharine Schori, the presiding bishop of the American Episcopal Church, is publicly on the record as approving both same-sex marriage and the ordination of homosexuals to ministry. Churches and even entire dioceses are currently aligning themselves with overseas arms of the church, particularly with bishoprics in Africa. They have to accept the loss of church property to do so, notwithstanding that congregations have paid in part or in whole for these properties and their maintenance. Such are the legalistic entanglements endemic to hierarchal governance of religious entities.

The 1998 conference was marked by dissension so profound as to be palpable over the homosexuality question. Especially the African bishops, representing 38.6 million congregants, more than on any other continent, including that of England, where it's the official state church, made it clear then that same-gender marriage (goofy as a possibility on biological grounds alone, notwithstanding scripture edicts) and ordination of homosexuals, a clear consequent adjunct, would not be acceptable. Thus, the die has been cast for the meeting in July – stormy.

Roiling the ecclesial waters will be Robinson, banned understandably from attending the conference officially, who plans to be in Canterbury as an outside observer of some sort, thereby calling attention to himself as the highest-profile bishop there, anyway, and to the profligacy he represents. This will antagonize the Africans all the more, but it mainly says a lot about Robinson as a representative of the militant, hard-core homosexual community in this country that constantly demands attention all out of proportion to its importance, not to mention the perversions it represents as perfectly normal. Then Joint-Chiefs Chairman Marine General Peter Pace caught a fury of criticism from the mainstream media last year when he used the term "immoral" to characterize homosexual acts.

Six of the eight democrat president-wannabes (Dodd and Biden declined) appeared before some sort of Gay, Lesbian, Transgender, Bisexual group for a full debate a few months ago to glorify the homosexual way of life and promise everything from gay marriage to out-of-the-closet homosexuals in the military. Predictably, the republican candidates wouldn't touch that outfit with a ten-foot pole. This, however, is indicative of the inordinate drive in the country, now overseen largely by the hippy-dippy boomers, toward a weird political correctness that violates even the obvious physiological attributes of human beings.

The other mainline denominations that have allowed the homosexual question to demand a fixation on the problem of affirming the homosexual lifestyle or not, notwithstanding its total condemnation in both biblical testaments, have seen their memberships riddled since 1960, during a large part of which time the homosexual question has overshadowed everything the church should be doing. Since 1960, the Episcopal denomination has decreased in membership by 48%; the United Methodists by 25%; Presbyterian (USA) by 44%; Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) by 74%, Evangelical-Lutheran by 31%.

By contrast, in the last 48 years the Church of the Latter Day Saints (Mormon, Mitt Romney's church), which adamantly condemns homosexual behavior and insists that those addicted to it can be "healed," has grown in membership by 243%. The Southern Baptist Convention, in which the homosexual question is considered unworthy of even a thought, has grown by 76% to a membership of more than 17 million, according to the National Council of Churches statistics for 2007.

So…will Robinson make his point in Canterbury and probably cause schism, the penultimate act of self-interest and indication of super-ego? It remains to be seen, but hopefully the time will soon come when the inordinate drive toward some sort of weird political/social correctness in this country, the ugliest aspect of which is the attempt to normalize sexual perversion, is short-circuited and the relatively few left in many denominations can start rebuilding.

And so it goes.

Jim Clark