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lees1975's Journal
lees1975's Journal
September 30, 2023

It's tough for some conservatives to discover, Jesus was woke.



It has become a real dilemma for conservative Evangelicals who claim the Bible is inerrant and infallible but who find out, when they read and study it more deeply, that Jesus was, by their own definition, "woke." He was a big time advocate for social justice and the gospel that he preached, contrary to the beliefs of those at the time who were waiting for a military and political deliverance from Rome, saw that meeting needs of the common people was a demonstration of true faith.

September 29, 2023

Time to come out swinging


Representative Jasmine Crockett, of Texas, provided an example of exactly what the Democratic party needs when she got the floor yesterday in the first impeachment hearing instigated by the extremist right and permitted by Speaker McCarthy. Wow. That's flashing around social media now, exactly as it should be. She exposed duplicity and dishonesty, laid out information that contrasted what a real impeachment, or two, actually looked like as opposed to this political sham, and made a salient point.

It was, in fact, a whole day's worth of such examples from Democrats on that committee. They buried the opposing party, many of whose members on that committee want nothing to do with a pointless, baseless political attack that will only raise Democrats' chances of winning in 2024, and particularly of defeating those on the committee who know it's too close for comfort in their own district. Rather than appear on camera, some of the members left the chamber during the hearing, running off rather than confronting the truth with lies.

This is what we need. We need this kind of thing making the news cycle every day. It will counter the deference that the media gives to Trump, who doesn't have to do anything now to be the subject of daily coverage. And having sensible, coherent, intelligent Democrats passionately stating reasonable positions that are supported by facts will be quite a contrast to the often unintelligible, demented ramblings of Trump and of other Republicans who invent the facts to support talking points. What commentator or reporter wouldn't welcome an intelligent discussion rather than having to do something with blabber? This is what our party needs now, folks! We need a John Fetterman--Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez--Jamie Raskin--Jasmine Crockett approach to the way we appear in the media.
September 29, 2023

The Republican Party's terrible, no good, very bad day.


Alexander, who is the main character in the children's book from which I borrowed part of the title, knew it was going to be a terrible, no good, very bad day because he went to sleep with gum in his mouth and woke up with gum in his hair. When he got out of bed, he tripped over his skateboard and by mistake dropped his sweater in the sink with the water running. There were lima beans for supper, and there was kissing on TV.

It was that kind of day for Republicans in the House of Representatives, and for Speaker Kevin McCarthy. First of all, the Senate, including most of the Republican members, have shown the way toward working out a deal to avoid a government shutdown. So he is faced with the choice of selfishly trying to protect his own rear end, and in so doing, creating misery for millions of Americans who will distinctly remember this as his and the small extremist minority in his party doing, which means his speakership is going to end after the 2024 election anyway, or doing the right thing, something which has been an increasingly difficult dilemma for Republicans over the past forty years or so.

Then, right down the line, the witnesses in the impeachment hearings that started today unanimously testified to absolutely nothing that would lead to any conclusion of wrongdoing on the part of the President. In fact, one of them actually said, there's no evidence here. If that wasn't bad enough, the Democrats on the oversight committee actually did their homework, looked through everything that was there, made a fine, virtually ironclad case that there is no grounds for impeachment, and then, if that wasn't terrible and no good enough, the number two Democrat on the committee found, and called out, an attempt to fabricate evidence by pointing out the obvious and deliberate deception, embarassing the congressman from Florida who had created the phony text message slide.

It can't get much more terrible, no good, very bad than it did today. Remember back at the the beginning of President Biden's term, when a few disagreements had the media declaring that the Democrats were "in disarray"? This is disarray to the tenth power.
September 28, 2023

The impeachment hearings are going to seal the deal for Biden in 2024

The fact that this is wasting time in front of a government default is bad enough, but when you come out on your first day of hearings with no evidence at all, and the question about evidence keeps coming up, it's looking really bad if you are a Republican.

Making false allegations and depending on conspiracy theories may work with the extreme right, but 65% of the voters are moving the other way.

I'm starting to really look forward to 2024, and an election that will go decisively in favor of Biden and the Democratic party.

And when we get it, and mark my words, we will, the legislation to prevent another attempt to take over better start coming out of Congress right away, or they'll keep trying.

September 27, 2023

A man was almost executed in his hometown for being "woke".


The reason so many American Christians are committed to idolizing self-interested power, power that only serves 'us' is that we've been taught and discipled to see that route as a faithful expression of the Christian faith. We were told over and over that the only way to be a morally upright American citizen was to vote for a particular political party to ensure our specific and 'chosen' moral issues--like abortion and homosexuality--were front and center in the culture wars and to ignore other issues--like racial injustice--as merely politics." Sociology Professor at IUPU Indianapolis Andrew Whitehead, in his book, American Idolatry: How Christian Nationalism Betrays the Gospel and Threatens the Church


Clearly, failure to discern truth is not a new problem. In the zeal that white, conservative, Evangelical Americans display for extremism on the right in politics, they must abandon biblical principles and teachings. What we are seeing now would indicate that they are not just abandoning these things because the political pull is stronger, they no longer associate issues related to justice, especially for the poor and disadvantaged, with the Christian gospel. It's a strong temptation to think that these blessings are only for those who are the self-proclaimed righteous.

Every time I see an author or an article or something along these lines, I promote it. It's possible to remain completely committed to Christian faith and practice and be a proud, loud, enthusiastic supporter of Joe Biden and the Democratic Party. Those things are not mutually exclusive.
September 26, 2023

The "Age of Apostasy" for American Evangelicals is the 21st Century


The Apostle Matthew wrote a comprehensive narrative, called "The Sermon on the Mount," quoting Jesus' preaching and teaching, which scholars believe probably represents several settings where Jesus taught in front of groups of people. There's a longer, more comprehensive listing and description of moral virtues and characteristics theoretically demonstrating what Christian living should look like, starting with things like "Blessed are the poor in spirit," and those who mourn, and those who are meek, and those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, and those who are merciful, who are pure in heart, and who are peacemakers. That is the very core essence of Christianity, that's what Jesus said it should look like.

So does it?

A political intrusion, to which many Evangelicals have become susceptible because they cannot get past the turning of abortion rights and human sexuality into political agenda issues, has removed the practice of the Christian gospel from many churches through misguided leadership. Instead of having a worldview based on the Christian gospel, they have a distorted worldview based on a political agenda, with Trumpism as the primary influence. So it is that a man whose lifestyle exemplifies a worldliness that is diametrically opposite the values of Jesus and the Christian gospel has deceived many Evangelical Christians into exchanging their loyalty to Christ for loyalty to him. He can't tolerate the other.
September 22, 2023

Kick back with some popcorn and watch the Republican party collapse.


The Republican Party has had control of the House of Representatives for about nine months now, and the way they are managing to accomplish absolutely nothing is reminiscent of the Whig Party in the 1850's, right before it collapsed into nothingness because of the pressures of abolitionist and slavery proponents within its ranks. Read some of the history of that time, change the issues, and you'll marvel that the ink is dry on the page.

Celebrate good times! Come on! The words to the song by Kool & the Gang are going through my head these days as I watch the news and see what is developing in Congress. When was the last time we had Republican members of the House openly talking to Democrats about working together to defeat their own party's speaker and keep the government from shutting down. It's almost unfortunate that there are some Republicans, probably enough to avoid the disaster of a government shutdown, who see what's coming and are taking steps to avoid it. Almost. But we are getting close enough to disaster that the damage to Republicans is a certainty.

We're in that period of time, to use an analogy that works well, after the victim has already drank the poison, waiting for it to take hold and bring death. The poison has been delivered in the irresponsible blasting of ridiculous words from their former orange headed buffoon of a President who insists on continuing to talk as if that matters at all. The man can't deliver a coherent speech, he just has several monologues that he plays over and over. He's lost in his own world, not realizing he's tanking in polls and his rallies are not even half-filling small venues. He's so out of touch that he doesn't realize a government shutdown will not stop his prosecution, but it will end his party's slim chance at winning a congressional majority in 2024, as well as ending what little possible chance he might have at winning back the White House.
September 21, 2023

Republican politician defends out of state corporation against local farmers and ranchers over water


A local Republican county supervisor in a small, agricultural county in Arizona defended the presence of an out-of-state corporation that has set up two large dairies in the county because in Arizona, there is little corporate regulation, they pay no taxes, and there is very little regulation of groundwater supplies. So this dairy company runs two dairy farms with about 100,000 cows, each consuming between 20 and 40 gallons of water a day, and requiring additional copious amounts of water to grow cattle feed, while the aquifer, located in a closed basin, in a desert, drops six feet per year. As wells go dry, private, small farms must spend as much as $45,000 to deepen their own wells, or haul water in.

While there's not really a whole lot that a county supervisor can do about a situation like this, she could stand with her neighbors and fellow members of the community she represents, and who elected her in the first place, and show some understanding of their plight. She could, at the very least, become an advocate for them against an out-of-state corporation that employs no locals, does very little business with local merchants and providers and pays no taxes to help with the problems they cause. She could speak up and use the influence of her position as a means through which the local farmers and ranchers could get their message to the attention of politicians who need to hear what they have to say.

But, it is too much to expect of Republican politicians, even on the local level, to stand up for the common people who have to work for a living against corporate exploitation. They just can't bring themselves to do it, even if they are members of the same community. And to save the water in the shrinking aquifer in the Willcox basin, local farmers and ranchers are going to have to set aside the conspiracy theories, the phony social agenda, and all of the lies and falsehoods and cast ballots for politicians who represent their own interests and will support their own community. And those politicians, even down at the county supervisor level, are likely to be members of the Democratic party.

September 18, 2023

Trying to figure out how Lauren Boebert got elected, and re-elected.


A close examination of Lauren Boebert's background may give some insight into a politician who doesn't seem to have the ability to settle on an identity. From the perspective of a Democrat, it is difficult to avoid the temptation to just write her off as a kook, the product of a deep red congressional district in a blue state where almost 70% of the population lives within a 90 minute drive of the state capital building in Denver. So she can easily be fodder for the mocking of her as an extremist. I'm guilty of doing that kind of writing her off myself.

There's more to it than that. I sometimes wonder if she, as a recruit to run by the GOP, is a much different person than the image she created and that the real person is coming out. I think the most sincere aspect of her politics is her being cemented to unrestricted gun ownership rights and there rest of the image, where she is awkward, ignorant of facts and inconsistent in her position, is the part she has trouble living up to. For someone who claims to be an Evangelical and has been since 2009, she exhibits almost no knowledge of doctrine or theology, or really much that would indicate she reads and studies the Bible at all. She speaks in mostly cliches in this regard.

And that's the backdrop for the latest photographs of Boebert, from a live theater production in Denver, making out with her date as if no one else is in the room, casually vaping and not really being very careful about what's being seen. Clearly, on the Republican side of the aisle, the moral and ethical standards of behavior for members of Congress have deteriorated down to nothing since Trump set the example for the party and they went ahead and nominated him anyway. It's quite an assumption that such a public display won't matter to her supporters. The closeness of her re-election bid is a clear indication that if this offended even a small fraction of those who voted for her, it will make the difference in the next election. But it doesn't appear that this is going over well at all, and if the apology now was kind of weak, I think the regrets on November 6th will be very powerful.
September 17, 2023

Romney stepping down is the end of a political era.


Personally, my own opinion of Mitt Romney as a politician got a huge boost on March 3, 2016. Driving on the Pennsylvania Turnpike, I heard his speech at the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah warning the GOP about the danger of nominating Donald Trump as their candidate for President. Romney correctly, and with cited evidence, gave a credible attack on Trump's character and behavior, his business dealings and most of his political positions which were all over the place.

Romney said Trump was a "phony, a fraud. He's playing members of the American public for suckers. If we Republicans choose Donald Trump as our nominee, the prospects for a safe and prosperous future are greatly diminished."

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