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Psalm 2

Why do the nations rage
and the peoples plot in vain?
The kings of the earth set themselves,
and the rulers take counsel together,
against the Lord and against his Anointed, saying,
“Let us burst their bonds apart
and cast away their cords from us.”

He who sits in the heavens laughs;
the Lord holds them in derision.
Then he will speak to them in his wrath,
and terrify them in his fury, saying,
“As for me, I have set my King
on Zion, my holy hill.”

I will tell of the decree:
The Lord said to me, “You are my Son;
today I have begotten you.
Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage,
and the ends of the earth your possession.
You shall break them with a rod of iron
and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.”

Now therefore, O kings, be wise;
be warned, O rulers of the earth.
Serve the Lord with fear,
and rejoice with trembling.
Kiss the Son,
lest he be angry, and you perish in the way,
for his wrath is quickly kindled.
Blessed are all who take refuge in him.

Key points:

  • Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 created during Carter Administration.
  • Under the Clinton Administration, the Democrat Congress poured fire on it by enacting the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999.
  • This created the environment for predatory lending by Wall Street and was guaranteed by Fannie and Freddie.
  • Banks were sued if they did not make loans to low-income, minority consumers.
  • John McCain warned Congress about these problems (So did Ron Paul).
  • Congress did not listen.
  • Media did not report.
  • Why would they? Home prices were skyrocketing because of the flood of buyers (re: demand) into market compared to the limited supply of homes.
  • Low-income consumers begain to default on their loans they could not afford.
  • Banks began to foreclose.
  • Housing prices began to tank. The Market began to get nervous.
  • Congress did NOTHING.
  • A veritable snowball of foreclosures continued. Housing prices bottomed out.
  • Fannie/Freddie and Wall Street fat cats jumped ship with “golden parachutes” (one as much as $25 million) because of “accounting inaccuracies.”
  • Henry Paulson firmly plucks a number out of the air (or some other orafice) and tells Congress it will cost $700 Billion to fix this mess.
  • The House does not pass the “Bailout Bill.”
  • The Market dives 777 points.
  • The Senate, ignoring the Constitution, takes a tabled bill about mental health and adds approximately $700 Billion to it with some provisions to bailout the economy. It passes.
  • The House, which narrowly defeated the bill just four days earlier, decides it is a better idea to pass the aformentioned un-Constitutional Bill sent from the Senate, with an additional $110 Billion of bacon attached. (Apparently in the current economic climate of thousands of foreclosures, repossessions, lay-offs and unenployment, not to mention and expensive two-pronged war in the Middle East, it is way more palatable to foist over $810 Billion on the taxpayers of the US and not just $700 Billion). Good idea.
  • With the Bush Administration, Treasury Secretary, Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Democratic Leadership, Republican Leadership and the Mainstream Media (MSM) telling us we “need” this bailout bill, or we will be living in a recession/depression until the next ice age, the Dow drops another 157 points on the great news!
  • The President signs the bill into Law.

Mark my words, the bailout will cost us a lot more than $700 billion.

Not just money.

Short term, this may look good. The market will ralley, Obama will be our next president and there will be a chicken in every pot.

Long term (this means more than 4 years to politicians), this will be bad.

The House voted it down on Monday, but now it smelled right? What changed?

Any congressman who voted for this, should be fired.

Sen. Luger: FIRED.

Sen. Bayh: FIRED.

Sen. Obama: FIRED.

Sen. McCain: FIRED.

Any Representative who switched, should be fired, find out who should be fired here.

Friday evening, April 18, 2008, I took my wife to see Caedmon’s Call live in concert at Grace UMC in Kokomo, In (my hometown). I have been a fan since they released their self-titled album “Caedmon’s Call” in 1997 and have every studio release since.

Spring Tour

The Band

I came to hear the band Before There Was Time to understand their lyrics; truly the music grabs your attentions, but There You Go, it is the lyrics that give you Hope to Carry On.

Musically, the band’s sound is folksy-pop with smooth harmonies and a kick of rock. (Think Simon & Garfunkel’s “Concert in the Park” performing with a miltia of musicians by the likes of Carole King, Jimmi Hendrix, John Bonham and Neil Peart (at the same time, no less)! This may sound like Trouble, but let me tell you…”This World has nothing…” on these talented musicians.

Become infatuated with the music, but fall deeply in love with their lyrics. Their work is poetic, reformed theology the magnifies the great, Creator, Sustainer and Lover far above the daily grind of everyday. Be Thankful for the true, relevant juxtaposition of our earthen frame with that of the magnificent God; There’s Only One (Holy One) and we are sovereignly formed in the Hands of the Potter to bear the image of Christ. Listen to the words and you will know not only hear Who You Are, but also that There is a Reason for why and how you are.

The Concert

I have been anticipating this event since hearing (three months ago) they would be playing near me. I had never previously seen them in concert; this was my chance. I don’t get to many concerts; my last one was Audio Adrenaline/Mercy Me over one year ago.

Arriving at the church, I noticed quite the variety of concert-goers: I saw elderly women, a bus-load of junior-high youths as well as the expected twenty- and thirty-somethings. I thought maybe we had the incorrect venue or night based on the attendance.

The $12 general admission tickets were an unexpected blessing. The concert went for about three hours and the band played over 25 songs in this small venue (I would guess less than 500 seats max); it felt as if they were playing in my living room. This has to be the best ticket – not just in town – but ANYWHERE; the value (quality and quantity) far excelled the cost or expectations. I would have traded my 40 Acres for these tickets!

Derek Webb, a modern prophet, afflicted the comfortable and comforted the afflicted with his tongue-in-cheek satirical in-your-face style. Nothing was off limits (as expected): fundamentalism, politics, social justice, idolatry, politics, love and hope. It was a fabulous set of songs to Prepare Ye the Way of our hearts to the LORD and our ears to Caedmon’s Call.

Cliff Young, a bare-footed and cap-less Warrior of righteousness, lead the Church (that is, capital “C”) present in worship of the God of Wonders.

Did I mention there were two drummers? There is nothing like double percussion to get you juices flowing and worship the God of The Danse.

The absolute highlight for me had to be the performance of “Hands of the Potter” and “Thankful.” I am so thankful that my redemption and righteousness are not in my hands, that “nothing in my hand I bring, simply to the Cross I cling.” I praise the LORD that there is a reason for why/when/how/what things happen, and that I am in the loving and careful hands of the potter who will do with me what he will to conform me more the the image of His Son.

What began in my mind as a “concert” has become not just a worship experience that evening, but continues to roll through my mind these days following.

Jesus Christ is worthy of our worship.

Sola Scriptura | Sola Fide | Sola Gratia | Sola Christus | Soli Deo Gloria

I have recently (twice in the last month) played “Settlers of Catan” (and wiki). It is an amazingly-fun game!

Quickly, it is a role-playing game that is a mix of “Risk” “Monopoly” and “The Game of Life.”

Strategy, negotiation, resource allocation, intrigue…it has it all!

It can take as long as Risk and Monopoly (I guess), but it hasn’t in my experience. One cool aspect of the game is that the board is unique each time it is played!

I have never played one of the “Sim” games, but I imagine it is a board-game version of that genre.

Check it out!

(BTW: for alternate or shorter versions of Monopoly, check out Seth’s page here.)

Another lo-fi game we like to play with our children is called “Pass the Pigs.” It is like playing craps with swine! It forces them to do addition quickly in their heads, and it is buckets ‘o fun.

Game on!

Here is the lead-in to an article published over at OpinionJournal.com (registration required):

$34.06 an Hour

That’s how much the average public school teachers makes. Is that “underpaid”?
BY JAY P. GREENE AND MARCUS A. WINTERS
Friday, February 2, 2007 12:01 a.m. EST
Who, on average, is better paid–public school teachers or architects? How about teachers or economists? You might be surprised to learn that public school teachers are better paid than these and many other professionals. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, public school teachers earned $34.06 per hour in 2005, 36% more than the hourly wage of the average white-collar worker and 11% more than the average professional specialty or technical worker.

Being that my wife is a [former public school] teacher along with most of her family and I am an architect primarily serving public schools clientele, this stings.

Read the rest of the article here.

It seems that with every other profession, compensation is directly proportional to productivity. Not in public schools.

And don’t even bring that up at family gatherings. Or client meetings.

The real question that should be asked is: who is responsible for the education of my chldren? (Emphasis emphasized for a reason: wink, wink, nudge, nudge).

changthis.com offers, like, a biz-illion short (usually one page) manifestos about change in our culture, business, politics…well, everything.

Faith is noticeably absent though.

An excerpt from their FAQ:

Do you have a political slant?

Yes. We are against demagoguery, dishonesty, shortsightedness, superstition, fundamentalism, unequal rights and violent argument.

We are optimists and we believe that an informed, motivated electorate is likely to do the right thing, given the facts and given a chance.

We reject the status quo of both parties if it is just the status quo.

And we’re realists. We don’t believe it’s a good idea to cut off your nose to spite your face. We don’t believe in anonymity. We don’t think someone should do something just because they can.

All of the above sounds good…but it seems the above worldview is based on the foundation of the ‘inherant goodness of man’ which I, along with the reformed tradition, soundly denounce, both out of experience and because it is true.
I denounce it because of the experience of my own sin; I am not inherantly good.

The reformers denounce it because the Bible states otherwise:

…just to name a few.

Michelle Malkin reports on an occurrence which recently happened at my alma mater.

BTW, who is David Horowitz?

Anyone for a[n election] morning-after pill?

One that would make all the mistakes that were made yesterday and consummated late, last night be forgotten in the toilet of this morning?

(sorry for the graphic depiction)

From President George W. Bush at the home office on Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, DC:

(2006-11-08) — President George Bush, in an effort to lift the spirits of dejected Republicans after Democrats yesterday took the House and perhaps the Senate, this morning issued his Top Ten list of Positive Outcomes from the Election.

10. New York Times and CNN will carry much less negative news about Congress.
9. Rhode Island Republican Sen. Lincoln Chafee lost and Connecticut Democrat Sen. Joe Lieberman won, a net gain of two for the GOP.
8. We may finally get to see the Democrat plan for victory in Iraq.
7. Taxpayers will be relieved of the burden of making so many investment decisions.
6. Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum is now available for Supreme Court appointment.
5. Possible reduction in attacks on our troops in Iraq, since terrorists fear attorneys.
4. NSA agents could soon be freed from having to listen to annoying terrorist chatter.
3. Lynn Swann will be remembered as a great wide receiver during the Pittsburgh Steelers 1970s dynasty.
2. Since a lot of the polling places are in church buildings, millions of Democrats actually went to church yesterday.
1. C-Span could get a ratings boost for new reality show: Impeachment 2007

In addition, the president noted that “millions of American Democrats will sleep more peacefully now that they are assured that Karl Rove doesn’t control everything.”

Courtesy of ScrappleFace

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