This -n- That

There’s been a lot going on this week.  While I haven’t had time to write a long-form post till now, here are a few scattered thoughts on recent developments:

It’s interesting that for a couple days it looked as though Trump were going squishy on demanding funding for border security (the wall).  But as with many issues in this administration, it often seems the news coverage greatly exaggerates the death of the president’s resolve on key issues (and this may the media’s intent).  It says something that within 24 hours the talk went from Trump being stymied by his own party in the House, to Speaker Ryan very publicly bending to the administration’s wishes.  In short, Trump comes out of this with a stronger hand, not a weaker one, even if the Senate fails to follow through.

Meanwhile, in the tradition of Tocqueville’s observations about Americans self-organizing, “we the people” are making a stab at ‘doing the jobs our government won’t do,’ to appropriate a phrase.  In less than 4 days, a private fundraising effort for the wall has drawn nearly 200,000 donors and, as of this writing, over $12.1 million.  While this large sum is dwarfed by the estimated $5 billion to build the wall, the enthusiasm being shown may well have tipped the balance for the actions in the House yesterday.  There is, after all, more than one way for the citizens to make their point, if they are determined to do so.

The departure of Secretary of Defense James Mattis set many tongues wagging yesterday.  Mattis was a highly regarded Marine general and military intellectual, known as the ‘warrior monk’ before putting on the suit and taking over as SECDEF.  But as others have pointed out, having operational and tactical savvy doesn’t necessarily translate into strategic acumen.  Regardless, it appears his resignation was predicated on disagreeing with Trump’s intent to disengage from Syria and greatly reduce our footprint in Afghanistan.  If they fundamentally disagreed on these policies, the honorable thing was for him to resign, not to backbite the president from the official perch at the Pentagon.  So regardless whether Trump’s policy proves wise or not, I respect Mattis for his action.  I also respect Trump for following through on a campaign promise to stop policing the world.  Unless someone can articulate a very clear, rational vision of what staying in Afghanistan can achieve, it’s time to recognize 17 years of occupation is long enough.  Let Syria and Afghanistan figure out their own destinies, and let’s free America to do the same by extricating ourselves from all these nebulous multilateral commitments.

That includes immigration.  The United Nations lived up to its reputation as wanting to be a global proto-government by creating a “Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration.”  In other words, facilitating the mass movement of peoples into alien lands.  The United States was one of only five nations who refused to sign onto the compact, correctly noting it was an attempt to create international “soft law” that would infringe on our national sovereignty.  The other four refusals came from Israel, Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic — all of whom have been under pressure for months due to their refusal to allow open passage across their borders.  Instead, they are putting the needs of their own citizens first… and what’s so immoral about that?

The real immorality today is the utter lack of accountability shown by the leaders of these various nations to the aspirations of their people and the requirements of the law. Whether it’s Theresa May slow-rolling the Brexit process, Emmanuel Macron trying to tax his people in the name of dubious “climate change” fearmongering or former FBI Director James Comey showing his utter disregard for legal protocols, the attitude is the same.  The main question today is how much longer will these globalist charlatans escape consequences for their actions.

The Fullness of Time

“I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father. In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world. But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father! So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.”  Galatians 4:1-7

Our pastor recently preached from this passage, noting that most sermons this time of year tend to come from the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke or John).  He referred to this scripture as sort of the “Gospel of Paul.”  His emphasis was on the “fullness of time” — How everything had been prepared for the arrival of the Messiah and the rapid spread of the message of hope in Christ:

  • The conquests of Alexander the Great had spread the Greek language across the entirety of the known world at that time.
  • The rise of Rome brought extensive travel and commerce:  the Pax Romana reduced risks to travelers using Rome’s intricate road system, and the cursus publicus (postal system) moved communications at a speed that would not be achieved in Europe again until the 19th Century.
  • The experiences of the Jewish people under various foreign rulers had increased their longing for the promised deliverer.  While they may have expected a secular ruler rather than the Son of God and His sacrifice, this expectation still led to spiritual preparations that made way first for John the Baptist, then Christ.

Then he concluded his sermon with an unexpected twist.  He asked us what “the reason for the season” is.  After the congregation answered “Jesus,” he said he was not surprised at the answer and that it was not necessarily wrong.  But he pointed back to the scripture above, and noted we celebrate Jesus’ birth because of what it means for us — a chance at redemption and adoption.  Before God ever said “let there be light,” He already had the Incarnation and the Cross on His mind.  From God’s perspective, WE were the reason for this season — why He went to all this effort in the first place.

As we look at the swirl of world events around us, it’s encouraging to remember this promise: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

Merry Christmas!

Two words for the United Nations

…and they ain’t “Merry Christmas.”  The UN General Assembly today voted 128-9 to condemn the U.S. decision to move its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.  Some of those 128 countries don’t have a lot of room for criticizing anybody, as Jake Tapper admirably points out:

It’s time these folks were sent packing. Ironically, though, by ignoring Nikki Halley’s warning two days ago, the UN may have given Americans an unintended Christmas gift:

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These are the top 10 recipients of U.S. foreign aid.  Israel (as expected) did not support the UN resolution against the U.S.  Of the others, Nigeria abstained, and the rest voted literally to bite the hand that feeds them!

Here’s what I find interesting about this: If you add up all the assistance aside from Israel’s, it comes to $10.2 billion dollars.  In 2016, the United States also gave the United Nations about $10 billion in total contributions.

Earlier this year, the Department of Homeland Security publicly estimated construction of Trump’s promised enhanced border with Mexico (“the wall”) would cost around $21 billion.

Ditch the ingrates, and the wall is paid for without adding a penny to the deficit.  Thanks, UN!

THIS is what an American-first administration looks like.  Let’s see what President Trump does with Ambassador Haley’s “list of names.”  The “bully pulpit” could make continued Congressional funding of these international leeches a lot less palatable than has been the case in the past.

Well… who’da thunk?

Note: this is a lengthy post in part because I’m refuting secularists who misuse scripture to justify the ongoing invasion of the West.  If you arrived on this site’s main page be sure to click on “Continue reading” below.

Both a judge in Washington and an appeals panel of the 9th Circus Circuit Court of Appeals have stayed President Trump’s executive order banning entry to the country by people from seven nations considered to be high risk (incidentally, it was Obama who first flagged these nations as problematic).  Both courts claimed there was no evidence to support such a ban.

Truth is, they just didn’t look for any.  After all, pesky facts would get in the way of their legislating AND presiding from the bench:

A review of information compiled by a Senate committee in 2016 reveals that 72 individuals from the seven countries covered in President Trump’s vetting executive order have been convicted in terror cases since the 9/11 attacks. These facts stand in stark contrast to the assertions by the Ninth Circuit judges who have blocked the president’s order on the basis that there is no evidence showing a risk to the United States in allowing aliens from these seven terror-associated countries to come in.

Let me repeat that: 72 people from the countries on Trump’s list arrived in the United States since 9/11, and were later convicted of terror-related actions.

This is why I can’t stand the Transportation Security Agency — it’s security theater, not real security.  Real security comes from keeping terrorists out of the country, not from harassing citizens at airports.

This is why I can’t stand the open borders crowd.  Either we are a sovereign nation or we’re not.  Sovereign nations have every right to control who is allowed to enter and under what circumstances.

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