There is a general sentiment among some fundamentalists that in this election we’ll just have to “hold our nose and vote” or “choose the lesser of two evils.” I’d like to address those that have chosen NOT to vote for the lesser of two evils.
- We are not voting for a pastor of our country and the Bible does not give us the qualifications for a president.
- We are not a Christian nation in the sense that Israel was God’s people. Our country was founded on biblical principles, but we are not a theocracy. We are a republic. We (the people) elect others to represent us in our government. We should try to get the best men available to do that for us.
- In the presidential race, there are only two men available to fill the office. Other names are on the ballots, but one of ONLY TWO will sit in the Oval Office.
- I’m NOT voting for the “lesser of two evils.” I’m going to vote for the best man available to represent me.
- In the end, you are still voting for the lesser of evils! Only you’re voting for the lesser of six evils. Even if you thought you were the best candidate, and voted for yourself, you’d be voting for the lesser of many evils. So, refusing to vote for evil is not an excuse, sorry.
While we cannot separate our Christianity from the public square, we do not act the same in the public square as we do in church. America is not the church, or the kingdom, or any other religious entity. So on Tuesday, November 4, 2008, cast your vote as an American. God put you in this country. Vote for the best man available to represent you.
Had you heard? Obama has an Arab sounding name. Had you heard that his middle name is “Hussein”? Let’s see. I’m trying to think of who else has that same name, except his last name. Does it matter? Not really, but it would at least have me checking out his background and who he supports. What if McCain’s middle name was “Adolf” or “Hitler”? John Hitler McCain. No one should check to see if he has any Nazi associations. Um. No. Like that would happen. He couldn’t win a national election. He wouldn’t even be running. No way he could last. Or how about John Wilkes McCain? But Hussein? You’re racist, a bigot, if you even think about that mattering? Oh really? Since when do the thought police, who strap on the first amendment, get to stop me from considering that with their own clever bit of reverse racism.
But with Obama, not only does he have that Middle Eastern sounding name, but he’s got the major background to boot. Not only does he have the checkered past, but he also lies about it now in a way that ought to be sending up back-pack explosions all over the place. There is no way this guy in a hundred years should be able to get a sniff of the presidency and, yet, he might just win it next week. He’s definitely the favorite. It’s so bad, it almost looks providential, as if God is using this occasion to judge our nation by turning us over to our own lusts. It’s something like Israel picking Saul to be their king because he’s a head taller than everyone else. This pins the stupidity needle like I haven’t seen in my lifetime.
I’m observing this from the standpoint of a dispensational, premillennial approach to Israel. We believe that the Abrahamic and Davidic covenant are still in play. We support Israel. Period. I don’t care if Israel votes for their own nightmare with a kind of blindness and self-destructive ignorance that borders on insanity. We still have the highest hopes for her and our literal approach to Scripture in part guides us in this vote. I wish Israel could get it too. I wish Jews in the U.S. could figure it out. Some do. I sort of get their history. They have pendulum swung the liberal direction ever since the fascists of the late and early twentieth century. They connect dots from Augustine to Martin Luther to Hitler to the Republican Party. They see the right as being frighteningly Christian. They way have the wrong interpretation of what’s happening. I wish they’d wake up and smell the matzo bon. Think Obama Fox–Israel Chicken Coop.
Our future is wrapped up in Israel too, but “no, let’s go ahead and stand right on top of the spot where the earth opens up.” Hint: the future is not with the Palestinian Liberation Organization. Hint: the Jewish hating nations who support Obama aren’t hopeful of a bright American future. But Obama doesn’t have Achmadinejad as one of his advisors. Oh well, everything must be OK. Shewww! I’m going to give these in just the bullet points. Strike that. The backpack points. And, Colin Powell, who is calling Obama a Muslim? I don’t hear anything like that coming from the McCain campaign. Whatever respect I had for Colin Powell just floated down the Euphrates. He’s bitter over how he was treated by the Bush administration. The incredible shrinking former Secretary of State. But I digress. Back to Obama and his scariness to Israel.
- His dad a Muslim.
- He grows up in rabidly Moslem Indonesia.
- Bill Ayers. Obama Unapologetic Terrorist Bomber Friend.
- Anti-Israel Jeremiah Wright (his amillennial black liberation theology results in hatred of Israel; see this video).
- Louis Farakhan.
- Wright and Farakhan sittin’ in a tree with Muammar Gaddafi.
- Endorsement from Hamas.
- Anti-Israel, Pro-Palistinian statement by Jesse Jackson.
- Close friendship and support of Rashid Khalidi, Yasser Arafat’s former close personal assistant (see the Fox Videos, and that LA Times won’t release theirs as part of media bias and cover-up, same man that set up Achmadinejad speech at Columbia University).
- Hiding Anti-Israel Views.
- Supports Kenya violent Islamic dictator Odinga (and read this, and this, also claims to be Obama cousin).
- Muammar Gaddafi: Arab world ready to finance and back Obama.
There is too much here to simply dismiss it as fearmongering. It’s not like it took any kind of real heavy lifting to put this together. I don’t think Obama is a Muslim. Let that be known. Also, I don’t think it matters. Jeremiah Wright isn’t a Muslim either. I don’t think that matters either. What I do say is that this above list should be scary for Israel, and for America too.
You may have already seen the YouTube interview linked at the end of this post, but it illustrates a problem that has become all too evident in this Presidential Campaign. Obama has more than just skeletons in his closet. He has corpses in there, rotting and swollen and maggot infested. But the voters don’t care. And why don’t they care? The reason that the voters don’t really care is that the media isn’t making a big deal about it. If it were important, the media would be making a big deal about it. Since the media doesn’t make a big deal about it, it must not be important.
All of this making Neal Postman’s important work in his book Amusing Ourselves to Death that much more prophetic. In fact, this election, like none before, has proven him right. We really do turn off our mind. The TV really is our epistemology. Television really does free politicians from the limited field of their own expertise. As a friend of mine said recently, elections are not about politics. Elections are the new American Idol.
We are not permitted to know who is best at being President or Governor or Senator, but whose image is best in touching and soothing the deep reaches of our discontent. We look at the television screen and ask, in the same voracious way as the Queen in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, “Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fairest one of all?” We are inclined to vote for those whose personality, family life, and style, as imaged on the screen, give back a better answer than the Queen received. As Xenophanes remarked twenty-five centuries ago, men always make their gods in their own image. But to this, television politics has added a new wrinkle: Those who would be gods refashion themselves into images the viewers would have them be. (pp.. 135)
So, we should not be surprised by this interview, which was produced by (gulp!) the Howard Stern Show, of all things. To be fair, he had one interviewer who supported McCain, and thought that Joe Biden was McCain’s running mate. But as you listen to these interviewers, I want you to repeat with me… “It’s not about race. It’s not about race. It’s not about race. It’s about issues.”
The polls say Obama will be our next President. We can discuss how accurate and/or reliable the polls are. Ann Coulter has an outstanding article on polls, demonstrating that they are reliably skewed in the Democratic candidate’s favor. In one sense, the polls are unreliable. But in another sense altogether, the polls are entirely reliable. They are reliably unreliable. And they are reliably skewed in favor of the Democratic candidate.
But we should also note that, although the numbers have always been inflated for the Democratic candidate, these same polls have also accurately picked the winner. Clinton had a 12-15 point lead in his first election. He didn’t win by 12-15 points, but he did win. Clinton had a 9 point lead in his second election. He didn’t win by 9 points, but he did win. In fact, in each of the examples that Coulter gives, the polls picked the winner. Their assessment of the spread was off, but their winner won.
Last Sunday, according to Zogby, Obama had a slight lead (about 2 points) over McCain. This week, that lead moved to as high as 12 points. If you have been following Zogby’s daily tracking, you might have noticed that Obama’s lead seems to be very volatile. Coulter’s explanation could be correct. But still, Obama holds the lead.
So, like it or not, we are likely to be saying “President Obama” for the next four years. The ObamaNation will have its day, as it appears now.
Discouraging? May I remind you that, in the sovereignty of God, we could get the President we want, and that could be the worst thing that ever happened to us. Or, we could get the President we fear, and that could be the best thing that ever happened to us.
That might be hard to imagine, so let me demonstrate. The first proposal for an income tax came during the administration of James Madison. The first time an income tax was imposed was during the administration of Abraham Lincoln. And Teddy Roosevelt was the first president to openly propose both an income tax and an inheritance tax. You can read an interesting history here.
Republicans gave us the Patriot Act. Republicans founded the Department of Homeland Security. A Republican administration (a pretty conservative one, too, as I recall), nominated Sandra Day O’Conner to the Supreme Court. Another Republican nominated John Paul Stevens. Another Republican nominated David Souter. During Republican administrations, America has not moved closer to repentance or revival. Churches have grown more worldly and apathetic in the last eight years. As has already been pointed out, no Messiah will be forthcoming out of Presidential Politics.
The fact is, if we “win” this election, we will likely breath a collective “Shew-w-w! that was close!” We will likely wipe our collective foreheads, dry the sweat off our collective hands, and continue on in our collective complacency, in our collective apathy, in our collective lukewarmness, and in our collective slide towards Gommorah. Just like the last 8 years.
If, on the other hand, we wind up losing this election, that could be the best thing that has happened to us in some time. Will we get more serious? Will we pray for our nation, more earnestly? Will we repent and seek the Lord for a revival?
I have to think so.
I have 4 extra tickets for the Robbie Knievel (son of Evil Knievel) event at the Home Depot Center ( Albany, Oregon ) this weekend if anybody wants them.
He’s going to try to jump 5,000 Obama supporters
…with a bulldozer.
Should be a good time. Let me know…
By this time, most people have read about the Clinton war room for the 1992 election, where then Governor Clinton’s senior strategists, James Carville and Paul Begala, posted the statement on a whiteboard, “The Economy, Stupid.” This was the first time I had heard the terminology, “talking points,” and probably you heard it by now, but instruction for a winning campaign—“Stay on message.” There was actually a haiku of three phrases on Carville’s whiteboard: Change vs. More of the Same, The Economy Stupid, Don’t Forget Health Care. As much as people make a gigantic deal about the success of these Clinton talking points, some people fail to remember Ross Perot got 17% of the votes out of that election and Clinton himself received way less than 50%. Perhaps they should have written, Ross Perot Stupid, on that board. Them were no geniuses.
We need our own war room and our message wouldn’t be that much different actually. I’d leave out only the third phrase of the Carville Mantra. The strategists drilled into Clinton the importance of repeating the talking points and staying on message. We should do the same. You already know that we won’t change the nation through political issues and elections. We need change and not more of the same. But how will change happen? It isn’t the economy. Although that’s what most Americans think. It is the gospel, stupid.
I’m not calling you stupid. Carville wasn’t calling Clinton, stupid. He was saying, “You’re stupid if you forget this talking point.” I’m saying, put The Gospel on your whiteboard. We’re all stupid if we forget it. We’re stupid when we even start forgetting the gospel. If Obama wins this election, the answer is the gospel, stupid. If McCain wins, it’s the gospel, stupid. Sometimes it takes an Obama to remember the gospel, stupid. When I catch myself thinking too much about Obama, Ayers, Wright, and Acorn, I need to remember the gospel, stupid. Do you think in a given week that we’re better off thinking and talking and writing more about this election than we do the gospel, stupid? It’s worth some time, just like bodily exercise is worth some time. But it “profiteth little.” The gospel profiteth much.
I believe that Jesus was talking about this election in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 6. People worry about the economy. They worry about their own physical needs. The Lord said in verse twenty-five, “Take no thought” of these things. Don’t make those your thinking or talking points. God will take care of you. He’ll meet your needs. Instead, make this your haiku, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness.” The economy and anything else God wants you to have will be added unto you.
Things Stupid about an Election
- It can’t take away sin, which is man’s real problem.
- It can’t make people do what they’re supposed to do.
- It can’t reconcile man with God.
- It can’t stop people’s greed.
- It can’t create honest leaders.
- It can’t stop men from dying.
- It can’t get anyone to heaven.
- It can’t eliminate the chief reason for crime and war.
- It can’t produce genuine love between people.
- It can’t cause human government to succeed.
- It can’t be the kingdom of God on earth.
- It gives people a false hope and a false sense of security about the future.
Things Stupid about not Elevating the Gospel above Elections
- We can persuade people to vote for our candidate, but they’ll still go to hell.
- When we’re talking about our candidate, we’re not talking about Jesus Christ.
- Even if our candidate does win the election, without preaching the gospel, the numbers of a right type of voter will still shrink.
- Someone for whom we vote will not bring in the kingdom of God on earth, but Jesus will.
- Jesus said, “Let the dead bury the dead,” so surely an election is below following Him.
- Other people might get the idea that elections are more important than gospel preaching.
- While we are spending time on the election, people will not be hearing the gospel.
- God commanded us to preach the gospel and He said nothing about elections.
- The gospel has the power to save someone forever and a politician or the election itself doesn’t have close to that power.
- The change of the gospel is eternal and the change wrought by an election winner is temporal.
- The gospel can transform someone on the inside and an election can’t.
- God’s Word says a lot about the gospel and it says very little about human government.
The election seems like big time. The news media talks about it. For a little bit of time, we share an opinion with millions of other Americans. Maybe we even feel some strength in numbers. But it’s not the way that God chooses to change the world. He chooses the weak things of the world to confound the strength of the mighty. He didn’t choose elections as His way for men to align themselves with Him. He did choose the preaching of the gospel. Let’s not be stupid.
The United States will fall some day. Election 2008 might mark the watershed moment of its sharpest ever decline. Paul wrote Timothy, “The love of money is the root of all evil.” I’m not sure that our country wouldn’t vote for a sadistic axe-murdering cannibal if he promised it a better economic package than the other guy. Twelve years ago Robert Bork wrote Slouching Towards Gommorha. The slouch has turned into a slippery slide.
What has so destroyed the discernment of American people that they have become so out-of-touch with God-given values? David Wells writes in No Place for Truth (p. 56):
Those who can manufacture such abundance are not immune from the moral corruption that multiplies in the abundance. Genius is never antiseptic. No matter how brilliant the Western achievements are—and they have been brilliant—like all other human achievements, they, too, serve as vehicles for the vices to which fallen human nature is constantly prone. The values that often accompany Western plenty are not made hygienic by the genius whose company they keep. On the contrary, they have become the acid that is eating at the Western soul. The hand that gives so generously in the material realm also takes away devastatingly in the spiritual.
What happened? Wells continues (pp. 57-59):
The Enlightenment world liberated us to dream dreams of the world’s renovation and of ourselves at its center, standing erect and proud, recasting the whole sorry scheme of things bare-handed, as it were, leaning only on our reason and goodness. . . . It is as if the ability to make better cars and better airplanes and better medicines and better theories imply an ability to make better selves. . . . The need to be in motion, moving toward the future, to know that we are leaving behind periods of lesser achievement and shaking ourselves free of what is obsolete, is obviously very great. . . . [B]eneath all of the difficulties and disappointments that modernity has brought, there still resides a belief in progress; we continue to think, or perhaps fervently hope, that we are still moving toward a better future. . . . There is always hope because things are always improving, despite the fact that under secular auspices there is no truth by which one can judge whether a culture is moving foward or backward.
This is Obama’s belief in change for change’s sake and the hope in hope and the hope in change. None of these are hopes rooted in absolute truth. They are rooted in the enlightenment optimism in change. Change means progress.
But does change mean progress? Not according to the Bible. Without God, we’ll change for sure. That change will always be a change toward the worse. It will start with spiritual deterioration and end in psychological and then physical devastation. God hasn’t made this world to change for the better without Him. We only change for the better by the grace of God. Without Him, its always a change for the worse.
This trust in progress separate from God leaves the absolute truth of God’s Word to relativism and then to secularization. Man becomes the new standard, elevating his own thoughts above God’s. Without inalienable truth, the culture loses its ability to transmit its values or even meaning from one generation to the next, so neither can it regulate behavior.
With the now uncertain standard, more important than substance is style, the ability to relate and make someone feel happy and secure. A previous world prized permanence. Ours wants change. Wells writes (pp. 42-44):
They made houses and shoes to last; we build obsolescence into many of our products, and our houses last only about forty years. . . . Men’s socks used to be darned and shirt collars and cuffs turned to make them last longer. Now we simply replace them. . . .The norms, values, and principles that were once seen to be enduring absolutes, along with the knowledge of God in which they were grounded, now seem quite uncertain and perishable.
Men will place their hope in change. They know they’re enlightened and they’ve progressed. They moved from the old ways to new ones. They prove to themselves that they’ve been liberated from any bondage to race, gender, sexual orientation, or system of morals. Imagine a nation that prefers a candidate who promises to steal the possessions of a few Americans to spread their earned or inherited wealth to everyone else, who blocked a bill that would protect infant survivors of abortion attempts, and who is unrelenting in his assocations with an unrepentant domestic terrorist who bombed our capital. He looks good. He sounds amazing, or at least that’s what the experts tell us. And he’s promising change.
In my last post, I mentioned that if I voted for McCain at all, it would only be because I support Palin. For that matter, if I could simply skip straight to Sarah Palin, I would. And that is a part of what bothers me about this election… Never before have I voted for a man in hopes that he would not finish his term.
It must have been last week that Rush Limbaugh ended his show by saying, “we have three hundred million people in this country, and the best two we could come up with for President are John McCain and Barak Obama?”
I have to agree. This may be one of the most hotly contested Presidential elections since… well, since the last two anyways. But I think the reason it is so has more to do with Barak Hussein Obama than with John “The Maverick” McCain. Obama supporters are in a frenzy. Chris Matthews gets a chill up his leg when he hears Obama speak. And on the other hand, the NObama people get a chill down their spine when they think about the possibility of saying “President Obama” for the next four years. The frenzy is on both sides of Obama… and McCain is merely an accessory.
With that in mind then, I have just a few random thoughts to put up on the blog for you to kick around in the comments thread. These thoughts are truly random in a very random sense of the word. No particular meaning should be attached to the chosen order .
First, if we vote for McCain, we are voting for Sarah Palin to rule over us.
Secondly, that (in my opinion) is not such a bad thing, for several reasons. I do not believe that a woman should rule over us, and I believe what the Bible says about such a case as that — in other words, that it is a sign of chastisement on us as a people. But with that in mind, I am not at all surprised that it has come to this, only that it has taken so long for it to come to this. Nor do I believe that this chastisement necessarily means that God is casting us aside. As a matter of fact, in this case, I can definitely see the possibility that this chastisement is meant to correct us in order to bless us. Palin is a true conservative — I don’t believe that the analogies of Palin as “Reagan in a skirt” are that far off — and takes a strong stance on abortion. And, as a woman, Palin has an opportunity to attack abortion in a way that no man could do it in this age of “sensitivity.” I realize that we have good reasons for remaining pessimistic about the possibility of putting an end to abortion in the next four years. But that should not keep us from trying. It would not be the first time that God has used chastisement in order to bless. Palin strikes you as an everyday woman: down to earth, middle class, “you betcha.” If you watched her debate with Joe Biden, you couldn’t help but feel that this was a friend. Could she be a bit too innocent for the Washington shenanig-meisters? Perhaps. One certainly has cause to fear that the wolves might devour her once she gets there. But, one might have thought the same of “Jael with the nail.”
Thirdly, if I were given the opportunity to choose my chastisement (as David did), I would prefer the chastisement of a woman ruling over me to the chastisement of Obama ruling over me. In following Rome’s path to destruction, I prefer Constantine to Nero. Obama is a truly dangerous man (I’ll get to that in a minute). But Sarah Palin is dangerous in a different way – and to a different set of people (namely, the American feminist).
Fourthly, those who think that Sarah Palin is incompetent to perform the duties of Vice President should pay more attention. Actually, you should pay less attention to the Agents of Propaganda (a.k.a the News Media), and more attention to what is actually happening here. Consider: when McCain chose Palin to be his running mate, she was virtually unknown. The media immediately sent a crew to dig up all the dirt that could be found on Sarah Palin. And, not surprisingly, she got some dirt on her. Then, for the next couple of weeks, we were treated to an avalanche of stories about all the dirt on Palin, until the media finally figured out that this strategy was backfiring, and that support for Sarah Palin increased in proportion with the number of hit pieces on her. So, the media backed off. They left her alone. They said nothing about her. For a couple of weeks. Then, THAT became the story… that nothing is being said about her. That obviously meant that she’s not doing anything, she’s not as popular as she was, people are cooling in their ardour for Sarah Palin.
This brings us to my fifth point — that we really have come to the place where image is everything, where propaganda matters, where propaganda trumps substance, and where invented ethos overrides character. Sarah Palin is a textbook illustration of this. Most of what we know of Sarah Palin we know from her reputation in Alaska (which is, by the way, very good), and from our Agents of Propaganda, the U.S. News Media. In her case, it is a battle between situated ethos (her reputation that results from her character), and invented ethos (her image as formed by the Creators of Image). In time, character always impacts reputation. But in Sarah Palin’s case, there is not time enough for her true character to shine through. The media has taken full advantage of this, and thus Sarah Palin has been painted as a bimbo. That’s too bad. But the fault lies at our door, when we allow the media to shape our opinions and to invent images for the main players in our political games.
And speaking of invented images, my sixth point has to do with Obama. In the era of image politics, Obama is the culmination of years of practice at carefully manufacturing the right Suit and Haircut to be President. The American people really don’t know him. Not that they care. He looks good, he sounds good. And when he has the right tools (think teleprompter), he actually sounds like he believes what he is saying. But Obama’s character will shine through his reputation as well. As long as this Presidential season has been, it has not been long enough for Obama’s character to overcome his reputation. It will, though.
But then, I have yet another thought here. Consider it my seventh point. Obama reminds me more of a manikin in a suit than he does a despot. Perhaps this is the danger of an Obama presidency. We are not really sure if Obama is the dangerous one, or if the people who manipulate Obama are the dangerous ones. I could be all wrong on this, but Obama seems to me to be like a puppet on a string. He dances skillfully, no doubt, but we are left to wonder if we should be impressed with him or with the people pulling his strings. Watching him reminds me of watching one of those ventriloquist acts with a very accomplished ventriloquist. I can’t tell if that really is his voice, or if someone else is doing the talking.
And that, in my opinion, is the real danger of an Obama presidency. One gets the eerie feeling that Obama is not his own man. Someone owns him. Should he win the presidency, someone else will run him. We have always understood the smoke-filled rooms where deals are made. But we have to think that an Obama presidency would be exactly that.
And that is why, all things being equal, my talk of voting third party is just that — talk. I’m thinking out loud. When it comes time to vote, I don’t want Obama in the White House. Not that I think Obama would be so dangerous by himself. Get him away from his handlers and his teleprompters, and he is LESS than ordinary. Rather, it is that I think that Obama’s handlers are extraordinarily dangerous.
I think I’ll vote Palin.
Is McCain just the lesser of two evils? I don’t think we can go that far in this election and I’m going to explain why. First, I want to tell you about my voting record.
In 1980, I was 18 and I voted Ronald Reagan over Jimmy Carter. In 84 I voted Ronald Reagan, not Walter Mondale. Four years later, I voted for the lesser of two evils—I think this would parallel pretty closely with the 2008 election—George Bush, Sr. and Dan Quayle instead of Michael Dukakis and Lloyd “You’re no Jack Kennedy” Bentsen. I voted for Jack Kemp in the 88 Republican primary. In 1992 we have Bush versus Clinton. “Read my lips, no new taxes.” “The Economy, stupid.” I voted Pat Buchanan in the primary. Four years later and four more years of President Clinton. I voted Buchanan over Robert Dole in the primaries. In 2000, a little different, because I voted for George W. Bush in the primary but Howard Phillips, Constitution Party, in the general election. In 2004, I voted Michael Peroutka, Constitution Party. George Bush couldn’t have won California in either 2000 or 04. Those were statement votes. Now we come to this election 2008.
The preamble to our constitution starts with “WE THE PEOPLE.” We individual citizens are responsible for who we elect. We take voting seriously, according to principles of God’s Word. This year I argue for McCain. Let me explain.
More than any other election in my lifetime, we have a “the-other-guy-can’t-be-allowed-to-win” election. I’m going to make my comparison between Obama and McCain, but to start, Obama is the worst major party presidential candidate in the history of the United States. I understand that a good argument could be made for Bill Clinton being the worst (especially in light of pretty credible evidence that he was a rapist). Obama comes from the very corrupt Chicago political establishment. Most of you have probably read about his friends (here too). He was mentored by a communist. He did far more damage than good as a community organizer. He began his career in the home of an unremorseful domestic terrorist, Bill Ayers (a must see picture). Obama couldn’t get started based on his own abilities and his own merits, so he utilized some of the most scummy as his gatekeepers. He’s totally liberal in his Christianity, not a believer in the Jesus Christ of the Bible. He was a leader in Acorn, one of the most radical, corrupt organizations in the United States [they're already at work, it seems, in this election]. It seems he’s received illegal donations from Palestinian men who are party of a large clan of Hamas’ supporters. He received the second biggest donation ($111,489) from Freddie Mac and called Franklin Raines, former chief executive for Freddie Mac, several times for advice on mortgage and housing policy matters. He spent twenty years as a member of a church that believed and preached black liberation theology. He is endorsed by Louis Farakhan, the leader of the Nation of Islam. He’s got a brother living in destitute poverty in Africa. In his own big project in life, the Annenberg Challenge, he continued shady dealings with a domestic terrorist and ended in abject failure and the waste of $160,000,000 dollars [CNN has finally picked up this story]. He funneled $75,000 of government money to the organization of his wife’s cousin. He earmarked one million dollars to his wife’s hospital. He voted only “present” most of the time while in the Illinois Senate because he’s not good at making important decisions. He had the most liberal voting record in the Senate in 2007, more liberal than Hillary Clinton. If you were to go look at Obama’s campaign platform and compare it to how he’s actually voted, you’ll repeatedly get an entirely opposition view—count on it; he’ll behave like he voted, not like his platform. With the above information, no one should even win a state congress position, let alone the presidency of the United States.
Doesn’t the above paragraph, a one-stop shopping spot for Obama, show us enough reasons already why we want McCain to win this election? I have things I don’t like about McCain, but he’s also got some very good positions on issues, enough of them that they make him worthy of our vote. Here are the main points.
SUPREME COURT NOMINATIONS
John McCain takes a strict constructionist view of the constitution. Did you hear Joe Biden in the VP debate bragging about how he opposed and helped defeat the nomination of Judge Robert Bork? Bork, the originalist interpreter of the constitution, did not make it to the court because of Biden and others. Obama will likely appoint the worst, most radically liberal Supreme Court justices ever. McCain will probably follow the pattern set by President Bush, appointing conservatives. He says he will. This is an area that he is very conservative. In the next four years, we could easily lose one or two of the liberal judges on the court. Their decisions will affect a multitude of issues. Homosexual marriage will likely go to the court soon just like the Texas state anti-sodomy law did (and was sadly overturned) a few years ago. Two more liberal judges and the Supreme Court could easily overturn the marriage amendments in state constitutions all over the United States. We need McCain’s Supreme Court nominations and we’ve got to avoid Obama’s.
Abortion wouldn’t be a federal issue if it wasn’t for Roe v. Wade. Since that decision, abortion is executive branch and federal government. Obama supports abortion. In February 2004, Michelle Obama wrote a fundraising letter during her husband’s 2004 U. S. Senate campaign claiming the partial birth abortion ban “is clearly unconstitutional” and “a flawed law.” Obama argued in the Illinois Senate against giving medical care to survivors of abortions (here is a site that gives all the information in the right side bar). Obama takes the worst abortion position in the history of American politics. McCain is anti-abortion and Palin is a candidate that takes the strongest position against abortion that I have ever seen in a political candidate in my lifetime.
Obama has always supported gun banning. He says he believes in the second amendment. His actions show otherwise. When Obama ran for the Illinois state senate the political group, Independent Voters of Illinois (IVI), asked him if he supported a “ban [on] the manufacture, sale and possession of handguns” and he responded “yes.” In 1998, a questionnaire administered by IL State Legislative National Political Awareness Test didn’t ask about banning all handguns, but it did find that Obama wanted to “ban the sale or transfer of all forms of semi-automatic weapons.” In addition, from 1998 to 2001, Obama was on the board of directors for the Joyce Foundation, which funded such anti-gun groups as the Violence Policy Center, the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence, and Handgun Free America. Both the Violence Policy Center and Handgun Free America, as its name suggests, are in favor of a complete ban on handguns. During his tenure on the board, the Joyce Foundation was probably the major funder of pro-control research in the United States. Obama also opposes the current laws in 48 states that let citizens carry concealed handguns for protection claiming, despite all the academic studies to the contrary, that “I think that creates a potential atmosphere where more innocent people could (get shot during) altercations.”
I don’t think there should be a department of education. The state shouldn’t be involved in education at all. However, it is, so with that in mind, McCain has advocated vouchers and school choice. That is an incredible expression of conservatism, for which I was happy when I heard it in his acceptance speech. On the other hand, you can mail in your Obama candidacy to the National Education Association and the other teacher’s unions.
Those four are enough for me. I could include a much better stand for McCain versus Obama on spending and taxes, on defense, and against terrorism. Those are bonus. You may have a convoluted theory that makes us better with Obama. You would be wrong. I have a better chance of winning the Olympic high jump than Chuck Baldwin and Alan Keyes have of winning this election. If you are going to vote for them, you may as well vote for your grandpa or dad. Vote for me. I’ve got as good an opportunity to win as them. I see Obama as president as something like Fidel Castro as president. We don’t want Obama. We really, really don’t want him as president. The only way to do anything about that is to vote for McCain.
If you had asked me four years ago, I would have told you that voting third party was foolish. Throwing away your vote. Wrong for the country. Not the way it works. But then, I’ve done some thinking since then. And I want to share some thoughts with you. This month, I’ll let the pundits do the high class opinionating. I’d just like to think out loud.
John McCain is the very first presidential candidate to ever get me to think about voting third party. A couple of months ago, as I was driving my wife home from school, I mentioned this to her. I cannot stand the thought of John McCain being our next president. The only thought that makes me shudder more than a McCain presidency is an Obama presidency. And that is what leaves me in a quandary.
In the political season Before Palin (B.P.), I had decided that I was not voting for McCain. But, when McCain nominated Sarah Palin, I gave it another look. Am I one of those deplorable “undecided” voters, the kind I used to revile? To be honest, yes. I am. Here is why. If I could bypass McCain and vote directly for Sarah Palin, I would do so. We can discuss the whole voting for a woman president issue in the comments section if you like, but for right now I will only say that I would have voted for Margaret Thatcher, and I would have voted for Deborah as well.
My quandary is in voting for a Presidential ticket because I support the Vice Presidential nominee. If I did vote for McCain, I would be doing so in the hopes that the Vice President would become President. I’ve never voted for a guy hoping that something would happen to remove him from office. Nor am I persuaded that I should.
No doubt our commenters will have plenty to say on this issue, some giving good reasons for voting McCain anyway, and others giving good reasons not to. I’ll let the comments section carry on that debate. I meanwhile intend to throw out some thoughts on voting third party, which is what I will do if I don’t vote for McCain.
First, these elections are not in the voters hands. God controls the nations. There is no power but of God. God removes kings and sets up kings (Daniel 2:21). The most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men (Daniel 4:17). By Him, kings reign and princes decree justice. By Him princes rule, and nobles, even all the judges of the earth. Elections are not in our hands. Our vote counts, but when the votes are counted, God’s will is always done.
This is not a fatalistic view of the election process. It is a simple acknowledgement of the Sovereign rule of God. It is not up to us to vote or to “ensure” that we get the best man in there. God will take care of putting the man in office that He intends.
This also reminds me of a conceit that voters often have — the conceit that says that my vote, especially in a Presidential election, makes a difference. We have been told this and told this, and yet we all have the vague notion that the argument and reality have nothing whatsoever in common. Neil Postman called voting “the next to last refuge of the politically impotent.” He went on to say that “the last refuge is, of course, giving your opinion to a pollster…”
Here is my point. I have had the privilege of voting in four presidential elections. In two of those elections, William Jefferson Clinton was elected President. In both of those elections, my vote was overwhelmed by those in favor of Clinton. In the other two of those elections, George W. Bush was elected President. In both of those elections, my state voted nearly 70% for Bush. As much as I would like it to be the case that my vote mattered, it really didn’t.
But thinking out loud, I’m not sure anymore that this is a reason for me to vote. In other words, I’m not convinced that “your vote matters” is a moral argument for voting, or that it is a moral argument for voting for the candidate that has been forced on me by the two parties.
Rather, I consider my vote and my right to vote to be a gift from God, a sacred trust. Understanding that the outcome is according to His decree, I view my vote to be more of a responsibility on my part — a responsibility to use that vote to make a statement (however impotent that statement may be) about who should be leading this country.
When I think about it that way, the old “hold your nose and vote” idea goes away. Obviously, I cannot give my approval, no matter how inconsequential my approval might be, to an unqualified candidate. Not even if that unqualified candidate is the overwhelming choice of The Party. In matters of conscience, The Party should never be granted authority to dictate who will be voted for.
Some will no doubt argue against this, that voting Third Party is like voting for Obama. But I would invite those who argue this way to take a fresh look at the history of Presidential politics. There has been a time or two when one or the other of the two major parties split. The Bull Moose Party comes to mind, when Teddy Roosevelt prevented the Republican candidate from being elected. Whenever the split has been severe, the result to the party has been reform – sometimes for good, other times for bad.
The Republican Party really does not represent our values, not even the way it did in the 1980’s. Clearly not in the way it once did. Until we as Christians stand up and say, “enough is enough,” the Republican Party will continue its slide right behind the Democratic Party. A split in the party might put a bad guy in the White House for four years. But the good accomplished could also straighten up the mess in short order, if the Republican Party got the message. And that could be a good thing.
JackHammers will not be silenced. We’ve found some stuff to chisel. Eye Protection firmly in place. Hands gloved. Sleeves rolled down. Heads wedged in hard hats. Sweat squiggling out from beneath the head band. We’re workin’ overtime.
We are the elect. This is the election. McCain or Obama. Republican or Democrat. Or Constitution. Palin or Biden. Electoral or Popular. Gallup or Zogby. We vote. And we’re Christians. We’re elect, and we elect.
Political discussion all month. Not election — THE election. Wear gloves. Squint manfully. Wipe sweat before it drips.
I want to make it easier for everyone to understand how people are polling for the upcoming vote. You may already know, but I want to blend it so you can drink it through a straw. Please don’t tell me the problems of McCain here. I’m aware. I’m sure that the Constitution Party and the American Independent Party take a stronger position than he. We’re talking about the two who can win. Here goes.
Obama Gets the Women’s Vote, not the Men’s
Right now the Gallup poll breaks it down like this:
Obama Women—52% Obama Men—39%
McCain Women—44% McCain Men—49%
If only the men voted, McCain wins a landslide. They say McCain’s got a woman problem. Obama’s got a bigger man problem. I’m sure you know that Obama also gets the metrosexual and sodomite vote—the limp wrist faction—by a large margin. Some have commented on “women rule over them” (Isaiah 3:12). Well, this is how women rule in this country. Remember 1 Timothy 2:14? “Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.” Women have a more natural disposition to be deceived. God designed them to have male headship. Elections give us a living example why.
Obama Gets the Kiddies’ Vote, not the Adults’
The Gallup Poll indicates this right now:
Obama 18-29 year olds—59% McCain 18-29 year olds—33%
Obama 30-49 year olds—48% McCain 30-49 year olds—46%
Obama 50-64 year olds—48% McCain 50-64 year olds—46%
Obama 65 and above year olds—43% McCain 65 and above year olds—47%
We’ve got to be glad for modern medicine keeping people alive much longer. Plus, people are having less kids, so there are less and less in the kiddie categories. It doesn’t help solvency of social security, but it comes in handy for this election. The older people are more likely to vote too. That 18-29 category has the lowest percentage of turn-out. Obama is doing his best to get the idiot vote in Colorado. This is “democracy at its best.”
This statistic reminds me of when President Clinton was running for president. He had several town-meeting type gatherings where he sat on a wooden stool in the middle of children, asking them what they thought he should do. The first half of Isaiah 3:12 reads: “children are their oppressors.” If it isn’t the women, then it will be the children. Who wins if you raise the voting age to 21 again and then abolish women’s suffrage? Just wondering out loud.
Obama Gets the Atheist’s Vote, not the Church-Going’s
We can see from the Gallup Poll:
Obama Weekly Church Attenders—28% McCain Weekly Church Attenders—66%
Obama Semi-Monthly Church Attenders—37% McCain Semi-Monthly Church Attenders—56%
Obama Non-Church Attenders—52% McCain Non-Church Attenders—40%
Obama has the hard fought pagan vote. Vote evil, vote Obama. Don’t shoot the messenger. I’m just looking at what we have here. If you look at education, Obama and McCain essentially tie in every category until post-graduate education. There Obama destroys McCain by nearly twenty percentage points. The further you get along in state education, the more secular you become. Either that or Christians are so unwelcome in state postgraduate education, that they don’t even try. The more you get God in your life, the less you like Obama. Why does that happen?
Obama Gets the Unmarrieds’ Vote, Not the Marrieds’
Gallup registers this:
Obama Unmarrieds—58% Obama Marrieds—41%
McCain Unmarrieds—34% McCain Marrieds—52%
Obama gets the “shack-up” vote. People with a commitment to each other, to stay together, among many other important qualities of marriage, they don’t vote for Obama. They vote for McCain. Obama gets the self-centered vote. Obama gets the “me” vote.
When you put it altogether, the consummate voter for Obama is an atheistic, unmarried, young woman. That’s his perfect demographic.
You won’t find the English word “practice” in the King James Version of the Bible. We do have the Greek word for “practice,” which is praxis. If you say “praxis” to people, they’ll think you have a speech impediment. The first time it appears in Scripture is in Acts 19:18 and it is translated “deeds.” It is found five other times and translated “works” and “office” (Rom 12:4) also. BDAG, the foremost Greek lexicon, says that it is “a function implying sustained activity,” “a way of conducting oneself, way of acting, course of action,” or “customary daily activity.” The verb form is prasso, which is found 38 times. BDAG says it means to perform an act or engage in an activity and shows how that prasso is used in that way.
Something that is “practical” is something that can be put into practice. Teaching is practical when it shows how to practice what is being taught. When we preach the Word of God, we want the listeners to practice Scripture. We don’t want just head knowledge, but we desire for the stuff in the brain to be lived out. Accurately obeying Scripture is the practice of Scripture. Living God’s Word can’t be easier than it is. We can’t take everything the Bible says to do and turn into something different than what Scripture says and have it be more practical. When it is practical, it is still Biblical.
We have our problem, however, when men think that something that isn’t Biblical is superior to Scripture because it is either easier to practice than what the Bible says to practice or it seems to work better than what God has actually told men to do. This is Read more…
Eleven years ago, I saw Utah for the first time, from behind the windshield of a Hertz-Penske moving truck, pulling the family car on a trailer, with my wife at my side and the family cat on her lap. We saw the sillouette of the gorgeous Wasatch mountains against the night sky, and we wondered what life in Utah would bring us. Would we, could we have a ministry in Ogden? And of course, one of the big questions at the top of our list — how would we witness to the Mormons.
Life in Utah was different than we expected. We have yet to meet a polygamist (as far as we know). We don’t see wild-eyed, bearded prophets like we were expecting. We don’t get shunned, and jobs are as available to us as they are to anybody. We had heard that non-Mormons could not buy land in Utah. I now am buying my second home since moving here. Our church has owned its own property for over forty-five years. The LDS (Latter-Day Saints) people are friendly and kind and make good neighbors, and I have no complaint about them.
When we got here, we were most surprised by how much the LDS church dominates cultural life. The news media openly discusses church news. Even sports-talk radio stations regularly discuss the LDS church. Every spring and fall before the General Conference, stores have special sales and discounts that are directly connected to church doings. Even as I sit here at my keyboard hunting and pecking away, our entire state is celebrating a Mormon holiday. This morning there was a parade and businesses are closed for the day, as Utah celebrates “Pioneer Days” — a part of our Mormon heritage.
I am very grateful that God sent my family and me to Utah. It is a great privilege to serve the Lord and stand for him in such a place as this. And, God is doing some wonderful things here in this state. By God’s grace, we will see more in the years ahead. One thing is for sure — as is the Temple of Diana, so will be the LDS Temple.
Witnessing to Mormons is a demanding task. All of the “conventional” approaches to witnessing simply do not get any traction here. LDS doctrine has taken all of this into account, and has the advantage of being in flux, so that Read more…