“He that takes truth for his guide, and duty for his end, may safely trust to God’s providence to lead him aright.” – Blaise Pascal. "There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily" – George Washington letter to Edmund Randolph — 1795. We live in a “post-truth” world. According to the dictionary, “post-truth” means, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Simply put, we now live in a culture that seems to value experience and emotion more than truth. Truth will never go away no matter how hard one might wish. Going beyond the MSM idealogical opinion/bias and their low information tabloid reality show news with a distractional superficial focus on entertainment, sensationalism, emotionalism and activist reporting – this blogs goal is to, in some small way, put a plug in the broken dam of truth and save as many as possible from the consequences—temporal and eternal. "The further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it." – George Orwell “There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.” ― Soren Kierkegaard
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (Matthew 6:33)
See how the Bible opens: “In the beginning God.” Let your life open in the same way. Seek with your whole soul, first and foremost, the kingdom of God, as the place of your citizenship, and His righteousness as the character of your life. As for the rest, it will come from the Lord Himself without your being anxious concerning it. All that is needful for this life and godliness “shall be added unto you.”
What a promise this is! Food, raiment, home, and so forth, God undertakes to add to you while you seek Him. You mind His business, and He will mind yours. If you want paper and string, you get them given in when you buy more important goods; and just so all that we need of earthly things we shall have thrown in with the kingdom. He who is an heir of salvation shall not die of starvation; and he who clothes his soul with the righteousness of God cannot be left of the Lord with a naked body. Away with carking care. Set all your mind upon seeking the Lord. Covetousness is poverty, and anxiety is misery: trust in God is an estate, and likeness of God is a heavenly inheritance. Lord, I seek Thee; be found of me.
I have heard people say that the language of the hymns from centuries past is too antiquated for a modern audience, but that wasn’t the case for me.
Even as an unbelieving nineteen-year-old who had been invited to attend church by a friend, the words of Charles Wesley profoundly impacted me the very first time I heard them,
“And can it be that I should gain an interest in the Savior’s blood? Died he for me who caused his pain, for me who him to death pursued? Amazing love, how can it be that thou my God should’st die for me?”
That first experience with hearing and singing Charles Wesley sparked a life-long love for hymnody.
Even before God saved me, He used hymns to strike awe and wonder into my heart as I pondered this God to whom the congregation sang so passionately. I was drawn by their scriptural truths and taught by them. And hymnody profoundly impacted the way I understood God.
However, after the Lord saved me, I began to notice that many who attend broadly evangelical churches are not familiar with much of hymnody. So, I decided to put together a list of 25 of the best classic hymns that the church doesn’t sing much anymore but should. My prayer is that these will bless your soul as much as they have mine.**
There were ninety and nine that safely lay / In the shelter of the fold / But one was out on the hills away / Far off from the gates of gold / Away on the mountains wild and bare / Away from the tender Shepherd’s care.
Jesus, lover of my soul / Let me to Thy bosom fly / While the nearer waters roll / While the tempest still is high / Hide me, O my Savior, hide / Till the storm of life is past / Safe into the haven guide / Oh, receive my soul at last.
Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah / Pilgrim through this barren land / I am weak, but Thou art mighty / Hold me with Thy pow’rful hand / Bread of heaven, Bread of heaven / Feed me till I want no more / Feed me till I want no more.
Arise, my soul, arise; shake off thy guilty fears / The bleeding Sacrifice in my behalf appears / Before the throne my surety stands / Before the throne my surety stands / My name is written on His hands.
Into the heart of Jesus / Deeper and deeper I go / Seeking to know the reason / Why He should love me so / Why He should stoop to lift me / Up from the miry clay / Saving my soul, making me whole / Though I had wandered away.
Praise, my soul, the King of Heaven / To His feet thy tribute bring / Ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven / Evermore His praises sing / Praise Him, praise Him, alleluia! / Praise the everlasting King.
Jesus is all the world to me / My life, my joy, my all / He is my strength from day to day / Without Him I would fall / When I am sad, to Him I go / No other one can cheer me so / When I am sad, He makes me glad/ He’s my Friend.
Eternal Father, strong to save / Whose arm doth bind the restless wave / Who bid’st the mighty ocean deep / Its own appointed limits keep / Oh hear us when we cry to Thee / For those in peril on the sea.
O sacred Head, now wounded, with grief and shame weighed down / Now scornfully surrounded with thorns, Thine only crown / O sacred Head, what glory, what bliss till now was Thine! Yet, though despised and gory, I joy to call Thee mine.
Refrain: Up from the grave He arose / With a mighty triumph o’er His foes / He arose a Victor from the dark domain / And He lives forever, with His saints to reign / He arose! He arose! / Hallelujah! Christ arose!
I heard the voice of Jesus say / “Come unto Me and rest / Lay down, thou weary one, lay down / Thy head upon My breast.” / I came to Jesus as I was / Weary and worn and sad / I found in Him a resting place / And He has made me glad.
“Facts don’t care about your feelings.” So says the pinned tweet on bestselling author and popular conservative podcast host Ben Shapiro’s Twitter account.
Is it a fact that facts don’t care about our feelings? What are our other options?
Friedrich Schleiermacher had an answer that Shapiro (and orthodox Christians) wouldn’t appreciate. The father of liberal theology answered with a resounding claim that could be interpreted as, our feelings don’t care about facts. In On Religion he writes that his beliefs do not, “originate from a rational decision. . . . It is the inner irresistible necessity of my nature.”
In other words, true religion, according to Schleiermacher, is not based on beliefs but is properly expressed when Christians feel like they are experiencing the infinite. Thus, experience trumps rational beliefs.
Schleiermacher’s theology led him to espouse a subjectivism that is eerily like our postmodern culture in the 21st century. As postmodernism is skeptical of ultimate claims to truth, Schleiermacher states that, “Each person may seek out religion in a form that is congenial to the slumbering bud that lies in him.”
That’s a fancy (or Romantic) way of saying that religion can take different shapes depending on the person. Once we’re no longer operating with agreed upon standards of truth and error, or facts and fiction, experience can vary by individual. This raises serious questions for Christians who need to think carefully about the role of facts and feelings.
Can we elevate experience over facts and remain orthodox? What do facts and feelings have to do with our preaching? Is there good news for doubters if our feelings are the ultimate standard?
I seek to answer those three questions.
Ultimately, I want to argue facts produce our feelings. To play on Luther’s articulation of the relationship between faith and works, the emphatic answer of Scripture is that facts alone should be our guide. But those facts are never alone. The facts presented in Scripture are meant to invoke feelings of dependence and joy in God through Christ.
Facts Over Feelings
Facts can get in the way of our desired narrative. But we are a people of truth because God is a God of truth, in whom there is no falsehood.
This means we can be certain that facts exist—we don’t need to wallow in skepticism. The prophets and apostles boldly announced the facts of God’s judgment, redemption, and future consummation. At no point do the messengers of God leave decisions of eternal significance up to the judgment of their hearers. This truth should strike preachers the most.
Peter proclaims at Pentecost the fact that Jesus, whom the Jews crucified, was indeed the Son of God. Thus, the feelings of sinners did not excuse them from having to submit to Christ as Lord. An uncomfortable fact for the audience. The only appropriate response was to “repent and be baptized.” (Acts 2:38).
Further, in Romans 3:4, Paul exclaims “let God be true, and every man a liar.” There is one standard for truth, and it’s not based on human preference. God is the standard for truth and everything that accords with his truth, is fact.
Too often, news outlets, researchers, even theologians, pick and choose which facts, or “alternate facts”, they want to highlight. Christian preachers do this when they ignore portions of Scripture which may not align with their personal convictions or may stir up controversy in their congregations. Christians should be people most committed to facts, and preachers should be people least swayed by human opinion.
Preaching Facts Produces Feelings
The task of preaching is vanity without facts. If there is no truth, there is no authoritative message to herald. The pulpit turns into an avenue of the therapeutic rather than the platform for unleashing the Word of God. The world doesn’t need more subjective motivational talks. It needs truth tethered to the facts of the Word of God because the real therapeutic is the proclamation that sinners need to turn to Christ and live.
Forgiveness of sin hinges on calling people out of their own sinful preferences and into God’s marvelous light. This isn’t a “feel-good” message. It goes against every impulse of our sinful nature. If we prioritize the therapeutic at the expense of proclaiming biblical facts, there would be no room for a life of costly discipleship because that would feel uncomfortable. No one truly feels like they are willing to forsake mother and father to follow Christ unless they know he is the eternal Son of God.
Even though Christians must submit our feelings and opinions to facts, a common misconception is that we preach and believe facts at the expense of generating feelings. On the contrary, God revealed facts in his Word to stir us to worship. Any theology that separates fact from feeling is a false theology.
Feelings and facts work together because our feelings, when properly ordered, perfectly align with truth. The Bible is rich with emotional language. Jesus tells us that he is to be the supreme treasure in our heart (Matt. 6:21). The psalmist says, “at the right hand of God is fulness of joy.” (Ps. 16:11).
The difference between the feelings that arise from loving God and the feelings described by Schleiermacher, however, is that the Christian’s feelings are rooted in facts greater than our own experience. This is wonderful news to those of us whose feelings too often lead to doubt and despair.
Facts are Good News
I think Shapiro’s sentiment is to say (in a provocative way) that our personal experience does not change the fact that a fact is a fact. Facts are true, outside of whether we want them, or believe them, to be true. This is a necessary stance for Christians because we believe in an objective truth and that we can know facts. Without the historical fact of a resurrection, our religion is dead.
It is also the best news for us because our assurance and union with Christ isn’t based on our subjective feelings.
If it were up to us to foster our own, as Schleiermacher phrased it, “feelings of absolute dependence”, then we would be, as Paul would say, “people most to be pitied.”
What is the good news if our experience is placed above facts? What if our experience is only suffering and despair? It sounds good in the abstract, but who do we look to when we need real hope? Thankfully, not ourselves.
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Rom. 5:8). It is God who works in us to will and to work for his good pleasure (Phil. 2:13). There is therefore now no condemnation for those in Christ (Rom. 8:1).
Without these facts of Christ’s life, death, and resurrection, and assured perseverance, which are true despite our opinions, we could muster no truly good feelings. We would be tossed to and fro at the whims of our emotions rather than being grounded in an unwavering fact that he who began a good work in us will bring it to completion (Phil. 1:6).
I am thankful that facts produce our feelings. My feelings of fear and guilt succumb to the promise of victory found in Christ. I rejoice in that fact.
“God is our refuge, and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” Psalm 46:1
Where is your place of refuge?
Are you disturbed by the challenges in your daily life or by the uncertainties in the world we live in today? Do you look for security in money, status, or image? Do you seek the Lord as your refuge in these situations?
Today’s Scripture describes how God provided for the Israelites during a siege conducted by the Assyrian army. The Assyrians thought their victory would be swift, but they did not realize the Israelites were finding refuge in God. Prior to the siege, King Hezekiah’s faith in God prompted him to lead his army to dig a tunnel passing through the Kidron Valley and connecting to the Gihon Spring. When it was completed, King Hezekiah ordered his men to cover the entrance to prevent the enemy from finding the tunnel, which provided the water necessary to sustain his people throughout the siege. Through this incredible story, we are reminded that in trouble, God is our refuge and he is the same God yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8).
The God who was unshaken and eternally in power in biblical times is the same God today. We should find our security in him as believers when we are feeling uncertain, afraid, or frustrated by life’s many challenges. When you devote your life to God, he will sustain you and as you seek to honor him. You will be safe under his protection just as the Israelites were.
We can be encouraged and find hope in the famed poem by Martin Luther called “God is our Refuge in Distress”
God is our refuge in distress Our shield of hope through every care. Our Shepherd watching us to bless, And therefore will we not despair; Although the mountains shake, And the hills their place forsake, And billows o’er them break Yet still will we not fear. For Thou, O God, art ever near.
Jesus, thank you for being our refuge. Help me to cover myself in your protection and to live a life fully devoted to you. Teach me to trust you and to know that you are in control. In your holy name I pray, amen.
Turn to God in worship and thanksgiving whenever you begin to feel anxious or afraid, knowing you are safe in him.
“The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade at your right hand.” Psalm 121:5
God has no weaknesses and no place where He is vulnerable to attack. He is never helpless, defenseless, at risk, or in danger of a surprise attack. Nothing and no one can lead to His downfall. It is impossible for God to be defeated. This wonderful God is your keeper! He is your protector, shield, and fortress.
There is nothing that can separate you from Him, regardless of the battles you’re in today. There is no separation between you and Your Captain, Your Warrior, and Your King. You march under Jesus’s banner; you advance under His command; you conquer with the sword of His Word; you stand upon His authority; you resist under His rule. You are victorious because He is. You are strong because He is. You are an overcomer because He is.
“All were astounded at the evidence of God’s mighty power and His majesty and magnificence.” Luke 9:43 (AMP).
Only God can turn a life from… meaninglessness to purposefulness, barrenness to fruitfulness, heaviness to joyfulness, ugliness to loveliness, aimlessness to hopefulness, anxiousness to peacefulness.
Zeal for Souls Beats Desire for Comfort 1 Corinthians 9:16
What marvel the devil does not love field-preaching! Neither do I: I love a commodious room, a soft cushion, a handsome pulpit. But where is my zeal, if I do not trample all these underfoot in order to save one more soul?
Ritzema, E. (Ed.). (2012). 300 Quotations for Preachers. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
Using Scripture in Debate Only Useful if Some Truths Admitted John 20:31; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; Hebrews 11:3
Sacred Scripture, since it has no science above itself, can dispute with one who denies its principles only if the opponent admits some at least of the truths obtained through divine revelation; thus we can argue with heretics from texts in Holy Writ, and against those who deny one article of faith we can argue from another. If our opponent believes nothing of divine revelation, there is no longer any means of proving the articles of faith by reasoning, but only of answering his objections—if he has any—against faith.
Ritzema, E., & Brant, R. (Eds.). (2013). 300 quotations for preachers from the Medieval church. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
China releases record $200M anti-US propaganda war movie A new record-setting $200 million Chinese war movie commissioned by the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) depicts the Korean War Battle of Chosin Reservoir as a key victory for the Chinese forces that fought against the U.S. and United Nations, despite suffering major losses. The nearly three-hour-long movie, “The Battle at Lake Changjin” — the Chinese name for the Battle of Chosin Reservoir — released September 30 tells the story of the battle from the Chinese perspective. While the U.S. views the battle as a successful fight to break through an encirclement by a larger Chinese force that suffered heavier casualties, … China sees the battle as its most critical victory during the war and refers to it as the “War to Resist American Aggression and Aid Korea.”
Seattle PD May Lose 40% Of Officers Over Covid-19 Vaccine Mandate It was inevitable – as vaccine mandates across the country approach their deadlines, vast swaths of American workers, service members and atheletes face termination or disciplinary action for refusing to take the Covid-19 jab. Interestingly, after a group of officers from the Los Angeles Police Department sued over the mandate, Sheriff Alex Villanueva announced that he would not ‘force anyone’ to take the jab. But not Seattle – which stands to lose 40% of its 1,000 person force for failing to get vaccinated as an Oct. 18 deadline approaches. “The environment has been pretty toxic and negative,” one officer anonymously told Fox 13. “Not just from this whole mandate, but prior to that as well. I’m not sure this would be a good place for me to work long-term for my mental health. It has been very stressful.”
China’s Coal Prices Soar To All-Time High As Floods Shut Down Sixty Mines Coal futures in China closed at a new record high on Monday after sixty coal mines in the country’s top coal-producing region were forced to shut amid heavy rain, flooding, and landslides, worsening the energy supply crisis. Coal futures on the local Zhengzhou Commodity Exchange jumped by nearly 12 percent to close at the equivalent of $219 per ton on Monday, setting a new record,
Magnitude 6.9 earthquake strikes off Alaska coast A magnitude 6.9 earthquake struck off the coast of Alaska early Monday in what the Alaska Earthquake Center called an aftershock of a 8.2 quake from late July. Monday’s earthquake was felt throughout the Alaska Peninsula and Kodiak Island, according to the Alaska Earthquake Center.
6.2 earthquake shakes Hawaii KA’U, Hawaii Island (KITV) — The U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) recorded an offshore magnitude-6.2?earthquake?southwest the Island of Hawaii on Sunday at 11:48 a.m., HST.
Gas crisis is ‘war’ between Russia and Europe, says energy insider Russia is at “war” with Europe amid the gas crisis, a Russian energy insider has said, as President Vladimir Putin seeks to leverage the continent’s energy dependence on Russian resources. Critics say European leaders misread Russia’s long game on the gas market. The continent’s energy crisis advanced this week as gas prices hit a record high, increasing eight-fold compared to the start of the year.
France to deploy extra police on Belgium border to curb migrant flows France is planning to deploy more police at the border with Belgium to stem the flow of migrants and asylum-seekers, with the interior minister saying half of those crossing the Channel to the UK come via that route. Gerald Darmanin said security measures would be boosted amid growing concerns the route is being abused by cross-Channel people traffickers.
China to outlaw all news outlets not funded by Communist Party Beijing published a draft law stating that privately funded organisations “shall not engage in news-gathering, editing, and broadcasting”. Officials have not confirmed whether the new rules will apply to foreign news organisations operating in China, effectively making them illegal.
Merck seeks first U.S. authorization for COVID-19 pill Merck & Co Inc (MRK.N) said on Monday it has applied for U.S. emergency use authorization for its drug to treat mild-to-moderate patients of COVID-19, putting it on course to become the first oral antiviral medication for the disease.
Despite Bennett’s pleas, Western Jews don’t want to immigrate to Israel Over the past decade, even after the massive immigration wave from the former Soviet Union in the 90s officially ended, Eastern Europe in general and Russia in particular, continued to massively outrank all other regions when it comes to immigration to Israel. On average, between 19,000 to 25,000 immigrants arrive from that region annually, while Olim from Europe, North and South America barely reach that number combined.
Apophis: What you should know about the asteroid skimming by Earth in 2029 The massive asteroid known as 99942 Apophis was once considered among the most dangerous asteroid in space, with the potential to strike Earth very high. But there were still reasons to fear that an impact could happen, and that surrounds the existence of the gravitational keyhole. Essentially, this is a small region of space influenced by a planet’s gravity. If an asteroid were to fly through the keyhole at the right time, it could alter its orbit.
Iran hacked US and Israeli defense tech companies – Microsoft The Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC) announced on Monday that Iranian hackers successfully targeted US and Israeli defense technology companies. The hacking “likely supports the national interests of the Islamic Republic of Iran,” Microsoft said.
Bangladesh says it ‘will join the world’s nuclear powers’ Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, at the inauguration of the reactor pressure vessel’s installation, announced this week the beginning of the country’s nuclear era, promising responsibility and competence in their usage of this form of energy.
NASA to launch mission to deflect asteroid away from Earth: An End Days omen? While insisting that there is no danger to the Earth from catastrophic asteroid strikes, NASA is launching a spacecraft with the suicide mission of smashing into two asteroids in the hopes of deflecting them. The target is a 500-foot wide asteroid known as Didymoon which orbits a much larger space rock known as the Didymos primary body, which is approximately 2,559 feet across. The mission is being managed by NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office and the Science Mission Directorate’s Planetary Science Division at NASA headquarters.
World’s biggest wine factory from 1,500 years ago discovered in central Israel Yavneh was the world’s major producers of wine roughly 1,500 years ago. We now know this because a massive and intricately designed industrial wine production complex from the Byzantine period has been unearthed in the city over the past two years. The major excavation was conducted by the Israel Antiquities Authority in a joint effort with the Israel Land Authority to expand the city. The complex features five impressive wine presses, kilns for firing the clay amphorae where they stored the wine, warehouses for aging, tens of thousands of both fragments, and intact earthen amphorae (jars), efficient access between the plant’s wings, and much more. A calculation of the production capacity of these winepresses shows that approximately two million liters of wine were marketed every year, while we should remember that the whole process was conducted manually.”
‘A strong America is the key to continuation of Abraham Accords’ Speaking to Arutz Sheva at the inauguration of the Friedman Center in Jerusalem, Friedman said: “We have all these people together with common values and common principles” of ensuring the strong relationship between Israel and the United States stays strong. Friedman is hopeful for the future and for the role his new foundation will play in advancing peace between Israel and countries in the region.
Sa’ar, Bennett oppose US consulate in Jerusalem for Palestinians Justice Minister Gideon Sa’ar said that he strongly opposes a US consulate being opened in east Jerusalem that will exclusively serve Palestinians, in a conversation with Editor-in-Chief Yaakov Katz at the Jerusalem Post Conference on Tuesday. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is on the same page, Sa’ar added.
Powerful earthquake strikes Crete, Greece for 2nd time in under a month A powerful earthquake rattled the Greek island of Crete on Tuesday for a second time in less than a month but there were no immediate reports of damage. A magnitude 6.3 tremor was centered at sea, some 23 km (14 miles) east of the village of Zakros in eastern Crete, the Athens Geodynamic Institute said.
Bennett: Iran aspires to build an army on Israel’s Golan border Iran aspires to build an army on Israel’s Golan Heights border, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Monday as he doubled down on Israeli sovereignty in that region and warned Tehran against continued entrenchment there. “The Golan Heights is Israel, period,” Bennett said as he addressed the Makor Rishon newspaper conference…
Iran hacked US and Israeli defense tech companies – Microsoft The Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC) announced on Monday that Iranian hackers successfully targeted US and Israeli defense technology companies. More than 250 Microsft Office 365 accounts linked to the US, EU and the Israeli government were hacked into through extensive password spraying.
China floods: Coal price hits fresh high as mines shut The price of coal used in China’s power plants has surged to a new record high as another of the country’s key mining regions is hit by flooding. Heavy rains hit Shanxi in recent days, the country’s biggest coal producing province, after record floods struck the mining region of Henan in July.
Russia’s Putin to host Bennett for Iran talks next week Russian President Vladimir Putin will host Prime Minister Naftali Bennett for talks on Iran’s nuclear program and other regional security issues, Bennett’s office said on Tuesday. The meeting, held at Putin’s invitation, will take place in Sochi on Oct. 22, the Israeli statement said.
Dems Tuck Multibillion-Dollar Handout to Illegal Immigrants Into Reconciliation President Joe Biden’s budget includes a provision that provides billions of dollars in cash to illegal aliens with children. The $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill extends the Child Tax Credit to anyone in the United States who provides an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, overturning a crucial safeguard against fraud.
Lakewood Church says it never sought forgiveness for $4.4M PPP loan The Joel Osteen-led Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas, which came under fire from the public last December for accepting $4.4 million from the federal government’s coronavirus relief program for small businesses known as the Paycheck Protection Program, said it never sought forgiveness for “the temporary assistance received.”
Brazilian President Warns of Population Control Another Warning for the Gaslighted Masses! Wake Up Folks! “Another requirement will come soon,” Bolsonaro warned, “And you know where it will stop? Population control.” Say what? Now where have I seen that kind of thinking written in stone? Why the Georgia Guide Stones of course!!
6 Scandals The Media Won’t Tell You About Outgoing NIH Director Francis Collins. “..no single person should serve in the position too long, and that it’s time to bring in a new scientist to lead the NIH into the future.” This, Collins says, is why he is resigning – not because of the revelations that he lied and committed treason by sending American taxpayer dollars to Wuhan, China, to perform illegal gain-of-function research on bat coronaviruses.
Chinese Illegal Immigrant Charged Over Arson of Historic Alabama Church A Chinese illegal immigrant has been charged with setting multiple fires to the First Baptist Church Montgomery in Alabama..Given Yan was in the country illegally, Bailey said in a motion that the $30,000 bail was “woefully inadequate to secure her presence in court given her strong ties to an overseas country.”
EMPTY SHELVES: The Deliberate and Now Inevitable Food Shortage Holocaust Is Upon Us It’s Christmas in October or so the retailers are saying. If one wants to celebrate the traditional gift exchanges that come with the Christmas season, one better complete their shopping this month, or their holiday celebration will be limited to gathering near the family Christmas tree, provided that the Green New Deal hasn’t taken over the grid.
Southwest Airlines Cancel Thousands Of Flights As Pilots Refuse Federally Mandated COVID-19 Vaccine Injections Southwest Airlines pilots asked a court to temporarily block the company from carrying out federally mandated coronavirus vaccinations until an existing lawsuit over alleged U.S. labor law violations is resolved. The Southwest Airlines Pilots Association’s filing Friday also asked for an immediate hearing on the request before a federal court in Dallas, claiming the carrier has continued to take unilateral actions that violate terms of the Railway Labor Act, which governs airline-union relations. Those steps include the Covid-19 vaccination requirement. Looks like the Matrix is waking up.
Magnitude 6.9 earthquake strikes off coast of AlaskaPosted: 11 Oct 2021 05:14 PM PDTA magnitude 6.9 earthquake struck off the coast of Alaska early Monday in what the Alaska Earthquake Center called an aftershock of an 8.2 quake from late July.According to the Associated Press, Monday’s earthquake was felt throughout the Alaska Peninsula and Kodiak Island, according to the Alaska Earthquake Center. It occurred about 70 miles (115 kilometers) east of Chignik, a community of about 90 people on the Alaska Peninsula.Chignik is about 450 miles (725 kilometers) southwest of Anchorage and 260 miles (420 kilometers) southwest of Kodiak.Continue reading Magnitude 6.9 earthquake strikes off coast of Alaska at End Time Headlines.
“Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect every one who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined.” —Patrick Henry (1788)
Biden’s commitment to issue an OSHA vaccine mandate for corporations has yet to be ordered.
“We’ve been patient, but our patience is wearing thin,” declared Joe Biden on September 9, when he announced, contrary to his prior assurance, “I don’t think it should be mandatory,” that he would be issuing a COVID vaccine mandate for all federal workers and employees of larger companies. An agitated Biden asserted, “Your refusal has cost all of us.”
The announcement both further politicized an already deeply divisive issue and needlessly threatened employment for hundreds of thousands of Americans in an economy that is continuing to struggle to recover from the worst pandemic in generations.
Now, a month on from Biden’s mandate announcement, Biden has yet to follow through. There is currently no vaccine mandate targeting large private companies. The Labor Department has not released any guide from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regarding any COVID vaccine mandate.
According to Stephanie McFarland, spokeswoman for the Indiana OSHA: “There is nothing there yet that gives employers any mandate. The president made an announcement on this asking OSHA to do it, but we’ve not yet seen anything come from it yet.” So when will Biden give the order? An even better question may be: Will Biden ever actually follow through on his announcement?
Either way, what is the Biden administration’s strategy here for delaying an actual mandate after his public announcement?
For one thing, it gives large companies cover for requiring their employees get vaccinated or lose their job. By pointing to Biden’s declared OSHA mandate, companies can insist the responsibility is out of their hands.
On the other hand for Biden, not actually issuing a vaccine mandate avoids additional political damage for an increasingly unpopular president. Unions will have a harder time blaming Biden if it’s not technically his mandate. The political calculation is that this will help protect Biden from blame in a struggling economy when it is besieged with a large number of firings of those who refuse corporate vaccination requirements.
However, the resistance to corporate mandates is already emerging in ways that significantly impact the country, including the Southwest Airlines employee protest this past weekend that caused the cancellation of thousands of flights. Such disruptions will metastasize in the coming weeks and could manifest in such actions as Teamster trucking slowdowns choking already strained supply lines.
And there will be social consequences, given emerging mandate resistance from law enforcement officers in increasingly violent urban centers, some where as many as 40% of officers are refusing the vaccine, many of whom because they have already recovered from COVID.
Of course, there’s also the immediate constitutional challenge. Republican state attorneys generals have lined up waiting to take Biden to court over his massive constitutional overreach, but there’s one problem — that overreach has not actually happened yet. They can’t sue Biden over an executive order that doesn’t exist.
So, in this way, companies are given cover to enact their own vaccine mandates, something many of them have desired over liability fears, based upon the expectation that a mandate from OSHA is imminent. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of Americans are being forced to chose between getting the COVID vaccine or losing their jobs, and all due to an announcement that Biden has yet to act upon. So much for all that talk about his patience wearing thin.
Well, Texas Governor Greg Abbott decided to call Biden’s bluff. On Monday, Abbott issued an executive order banning “any entity” from issuing COVID vaccine mandates in the Lone Star State. Abbott made clear that he is not opposed to the COVID vaccines but is acting to preserve Texans’ individual liberty to make the decision for themselves. “The COVID-19 vaccine is safe, effective, and our best defense against the virus, but should remain voluntary and never forced,” Abbott declared. At least in Texas, employers can’t hide behind Biden’s yet-to-materialize COVID vaccine mandate.
His miserable polling numbers haven’t rebounded, and his fellow Democrats fear he’ll take them with him.
It’s panic time for Democrats. So much so that George Clooney is blaming Donald Trump for Joe Biden’s remarkably stubborn unpopularity.
Clooney, a seemingly likable guy who many years ago made some good movies, took politics past the water’s edge during a BBC interview on Sunday in which he complained about the bad hand left by Trump to Biden. “It’s like taking a battered child and thinking everything’s going to be OK his first day in school,” said the actor. “There’s a lot of things that have to be repaired, you know? There’s a lot of healing that has to happen, and it’s going to take time.”
Setting aside Clooney’s odious comparison of our nation under Trump to a battered child, what’s interesting is that it’s taken him nine months to figure out what a diabolical trap The Orange Man set for his party’s standard-bearer. It was a multifaceted trap, to be sure, and its various hazards included a roaring economy, growing wages, record-low unemployment rates, insignificant inflation, three COVID-19 vaccines and a system for distributing them, a secure southern border, energy independence, low gas prices, a strong and cohesive military, the respect of our geopolitical foes, a stable Middle East, and an exit plan for Afghanistan. The only thing Trump didn’t leave Biden was a trustworthy election system.
And Biden, beginning on January 20, has veered hard to the left and steadily dismantled all of it. Damn that Trump!
As for Clooney’s belief that it’s going to take time to “repair” all the good things Trump bequeathed to Biden, we’re not so sure. After all, it took Scranton Joe nearly half a century to gain the White House, but less than nine months to wreck every good thing Trump left him. Still, the star of “Suburbicon” is convinced: Biden is sitting at 38% approval, and it’s all Trump’s fault.
The left-of-center scribes at Politico seem to think all of Biden’s troubles revolve around COVID-19. “Democrats are ringing alarm bells,” they write, “and coming to the simplest of conclusions: It’s the pandemic, stupid.” As proof, they point to a nine-person focus group of Democrat voters, all of whom gave Biden a grade of C- or worse, and all of whom gave reasons for their unease that revolve around COVID-19’s influence on the everyday parts of their lives. Onerous masking and vaccine requirements are the obvious ones, but myriad others — the inability to buy a new car because of supply chain issues, and the inability to enjoy a nice dinner out due to understaffing, for example — are ever present.
We think there’s some truth to this diagnosis, but it’s certainly not the only thing plaguing Joe Biden. Remarkably, though, the reader has to slog through 25 paragraphs of the Politico piece (you’re welcome) to see even a mention of the disaster in Afghanistan or the calamity on our southern border as reasons for Biden’s slide.
“Seek first to understand” would no doubt be the advice of self-help guru Steven Covey to Democrat strategists everywhere. Either that, or kiss goodbye your tenuous hold on power. On second thought, Democrats: Go ahead and keep blaming all of Biden’s woes on the pandemic.
Ultimately, the biggest obstacle Joe Biden faces is Joe Biden. Our Mark Alexander, who recently analyzed what went so horribly wrong in Afghanistan, came to a conclusion that’s attributable across the board: Biden himself is the red flag.
Just nine months into their guy’s presidency, the troubling truth that Democrats must now wrestle with is the inelasticity of Biden’s polling numbers. Unlike past presidents who’ve been overtaken by events, Joe just isn’t bouncing back.
He isn’t bouncing back, and his party has resorted to infighting. In a recent conference call with Democrats, Biden joked that putting Bernie Sanders in the same room as West Virginia’s fly in the Democrat ointment, Joe Manchin, could result in “homicide.”
Democrats laughed, but they know that Biden’s entire agenda is in peril.
As to Biden’s polling predicament — which is, of course, the Democrat Party’s predicament — George Clooney is resolute if nothing else. “Poll numbers come up and go down,” he says. “I would expect them to go up again.”
Go ahead and set a number, George. We’ll take the “under.”
It’s not a literal tax increase that would violate Biden’s pledge, but we’re all paying more.
We’re old enough to remember when President Donald Trump largely fulfilled the promise of several of his predecessors to make the U.S. energy independent, including becoming a net oil exporter. It took Joe Biden all of one day to begin undoing that achievement, and he has been all too successful.
Beginning with his executive order shuttering the Keystone XL Pipeline, and continuing with his moratorium on new drilling leases and other policies, Biden has made every effort to obstruct America’s energy supply — all while helping Vladimir Putin solidify his. Predictably, Biden’s efforts have increased energy prices for every American.
If you’re not a Leftmedia “fact-checker,” you might even call it a tax increase on the middle class.
Gas prices recently reached a seven-year high after rising an average of $1 per gallon since December. Also for the first time in nearly seven years, crude oil now exceeds $80 a barrel, or about double the price last November. Natural gas and coal are experiencing similar price hikes, all while renewables like wind and solar are insufficient replacements.
Regarding oil, Biden’s constriction of supply got so bad that he went hat in hand to OPEC to ask them to increase production. They told him to pound sand.
Amidst all of this chaos and malaise, has Joe Biden come to an epiphany? Has he realized the error of his ways? Not a chance — he’s been in Washington for half a century, which is far too long for any humble realization like that.
In fact, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm floated a ban on oil oil exports to go along with tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to reduce pressure on Biden’s flagging poll numbers, er, oil and gas prices. The Energy Department sort of walked that back for her, but the White House declined to comment.
Meanwhile, Biden’s “infrastructure” bill would create a national study to assess a new mileage tax to be assessed based on how many miles drivers are on the road. It’s not a tax … yet. But as miles-per-gallon averages increase along with miles driven, the old federal gas tax of 18 cents per mile is raising insufficient revenue for actual infrastructure. Also don’t forget that coming down the pike is Biden’s electric vehicle mandate.
In short, Biden is flying the green flag of “saving the planet,” but his policies are costing every American higher prices to fill up their gas tanks and heat their homes, as well as creating a myriad of other inflationary factors, all while weakening U.S. national security as we become more energy dependent again. Anyone still thinking the Bad Orange Man was all that bad?
A male student took advantage of the “transgender” exception to the girls’ bathroom rule.
Loudoun County, Virginia, has been the hotbed of radical school policies. A handful of vitriolic left-wing activist parents and corrupt people in powerful positions have this typically conservative county in a vice grip. The county has become renowned for its heated school board meetings, as Scott Smith now knows to his detriment.
Smith became the poster parent for what leftist school boards and Joe Biden’s Social Justice Department are calling “domestic terrorists” when, after getting agitated at a school board meeting, he was tackled to the ground, humiliated, and arrested by police. As always, there is more to the story.
The reason Smith was even at the school board meeting was because the topic under discussion was making schools and their bathrooms more “transgender-safe.” He had a very important reason for being there and wanted to speak because his daughter was a victim of these dastardly bathroom rules.
On May 28, Smith was called to Stone Bridge High School where his ninth-grade daughter attended. He was informed that she had been physically assaulted by a male student in the bathroom. When he arrived and had a chance to assess the situation, he discovered it was far more sickening than just his daughter being beaten up. She had been sexually assaulted. Naturally, this father raised Cain, and both he and his daughter were escorted to a hospital. When the school put out a statement about the incident later, it made it seem that Smith was the one in the wrong for being angry and causing a ruckus. “[School officials] washed their hands of this,” Smith stated.
The boy who assaulted Smith’s daughter was a bisexual student who sometimes wore skirts and took advantage of males being allowed into women’s spaces to commit this crime. The incident is being prosecuted, and the degenerate is being charged with felony aggravated sexual battery.
Smith and his wife were at the school board meeting to tell their story in the hopes of bringing awareness to the dangers of this rule. A women wearing a rainbow heart T-shirt (signaling her raving activist stance) approached them as they were waiting for their turn. She was an acquaintance of the family, and when she was told why Smith and his wife were there, she purportedly said that she “didn’t believe their daughter.” Smith was understandably enraged. Was it not enough that his child had suffered this horror at school, a place where she was supposed to be safe? Now this rainbow Nazi had the audacity to say she didn’t believe them? That’s when Smith was tackled to the ground by police and made headlines.
It’s a shame, because if Smith had kept his cool and been allowed to speak, it would have been a bombshell at the already heated meeting. Smith and his daughter’s lawyer, Elizabeth Lancaster, said to the press, “If someone would have sat and listened for 30 seconds to what Scott had to say, they would have been mortified and heartbroken.”
Needless to say, this attitude is not unheard of. The Rainbow Mafia has been known to go after people like J.K. Rowling for being a TERF (“trans-exclusionary radical feminist”), and most recently it excoriated comedian Dave Chappelle when he said he supported the “TERF” stance.
This will keep happening, and not just in schools (see Wi Spa). The American people need to stand up for their mothers, sisters, wives, and daughters and keep bathrooms and other women’s spaces safe by keeping biological men out.
Grassroots Patriots should fight for it with all we’re worth.
Grassroots Patriots are in a massive battle — one whose outcome will decide the future of this country. The stakes are extremely high, and it will probably be a long and difficult fight. Our opponents are unrelenting.
What’s at stake? For all intents and purposes, it is freedom of expression (also known as the First Amendment). It is whether grassroots Patriots can even make their case to America. There has been a pattern that shows the Left wants those uppity Patriots to shut up. Just a few examples: Tucker Carlson’s emails were the subject of spying accusations. WinRed came under attack. Now, Merrick Garland has added yet another exhibit by implying parents getting involved in local schools are “domestic terrorists.”
There is one overarching theme we can see from this pattern: The Left wants grassroots Patriots silenced. This even predates Barack Obama. Remember when the Left wanted the “Fairness Doctrine” restored due to the rise of talk radio, led by the late Rush Limbaugh? But the pattern has remained the same since then, only the pretexts have changed.
From the need to “balance” Rush Limbaugh (back when ABC, NBC, CBS, and CNN dominated the airwaves), to Fox News, to dealing with grassroots Patriots becoming more effective on social media, to ultimately terminating the purported “threat to democracy” posed by Donald Trump (again, pay no attention to the norms and standards leftists destroyed in their “get Trump” jihad).
The target wasn’t just conservative media. At a number of events where Trump supporters sought to gather, notably in San Jose back in June 2016, left-wing thugs attacked. The mayor’s response? “At some point Donald Trump needs to take responsibility for the irresponsible behavior of his campaign.” Does that strike you as being awfully similar to asking a rape victim why she was wearing a certain outfit?
There is one thing that cannot be denied: The violence persisted and persisted and persisted. It was fueled by plenty of name-calling and other types of hate speech, too. And just as when they falsely claimed that Sarah Palin incited the Tucson assailant, or that Trump incited the Capitol riot on January 6, or that Limbaugh was liable for the Oklahoma City bombing, the goal was the same: Shame grassroots Patriots into silence and acquiescence to their agenda.
But the argument they made when they tried to get Rush, Palin, and Trump can be turned back on them, and they know it: What sort of actions have their hate speech led to over the years? Dennis Prager’s question about whether left-wing rhetoric led to the “fortification” of the 2020 election via dubious methods also needs to be asked. Given the results of the Arizona audit, there is good reason to ask those questions.
Why is it that the establishment doesn’t want people asking these questions? Or for grassroots Patriots to even speak out at all? In one sense, some numbers provide the answer: Fox News outdraws CNN and MSNBC in the ratings. Even The New York Times admitted that Limbaugh had 15 million people listening to him.
The fact is, when grassroots Patriots have a fair chance to speak to America, they usually win. They win the arguments, and the policies have worked better than those of the Left. But none of that will matter if they can’t make their case to the public.
Having graduated from Moscow State University just before the Soviet Union collapsed, Saule Omarova is an old-school central planner.
With our previous president having repeatedly vowed that “America will never be a socialist country,” and with all the subsequent criticism of Joe Biden and his fellow Democrats leading us toward that very same socialism, one would think that he might avoid putting communist sympathizers in key positions with his administration. Especially key positions that involve influence on the economy — such as the regulation of our banks.
One would think.
But nyet. If ever there were an indication that Soviet communism is alive and well within today’s Democrat Party, it’d be Joe Biden’s nominee for comptroller of the currency, Cornell law professor Saule Omarova.
For starters, Omarova graduated from Moscow State University in 1989, having gone to school on a Lenin Personal Academic Scholarship. No kidding. So while Ronald Reagan was denouncing The Evil Empire and demanding that Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev “tear down this wall,” Saule Omarova was learning all about the virtues of the Soviet system — the one that builds walls to keep people in and shoots people who try to escape. We half expected Omarova to have won the Josef Stalin Prize for her graduate thesis on collectivism and terror-famines.
“Thirty years later,” as the Wall Street Journal editorial board writes, “she still believes the Soviet economic system was superior, and that U.S. banking should be remade in the [Soviet state bank’s] image.”
Of course, it’s possible that the Journal simply has it in for Omarova, and that in fact she’s an avowed anti-communist, an acolyte of Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman, and a proponent of Adam Smith’s “invisible hand.” Of course, it’s also possible that Basement Joe Biden got more population-adjusted votes last November than Barack Obama got in 2008.
So it is with Omarova. Here’s what she tweeted just two years ago: “Until I came to the US, I couldn’t imagine that things like gender pay gap still existed in today’s world. Say what you will about old USSR, there was no gender pay gap there. Market doesn’t always ‘know best.’”
After getting her comeuppance from a stream of Twitter replies, Omarova walked back her ridiculous comment, then vomited forth another absurdity: “I never claimed women and men were treated absolutely equally in every facet of Soviet life. But people’s salaries were set (by the state) in a gender-blind manner. And all women got very generous maternity benefits. Both things are still a pipe dream in our society!”
Okay, but at least our stores have food on the shelves. And does anyone want this or any government telling us how much money we can make? Ours is a country of 330 million people, and this Moscow State grad is the best banking nominee Joe Biden can come up with?
Omarova would supervise some 1,200 financial institutions and would have sweeping powers to punish banks that don’t play by her rules. Pennsylvania’s Pat Toomey, the ranking member on the Senate Banking Committee, said he had “serious reservations about her nomination,” noting that Omarova “has called for ‘radically reshaping the basic architecture and dynamics of modern finance’ including nationalizing retail banking and having the Federal Reserve allocate credit.”
Serious reservations indeed. It’ll be interesting to see just how committed this woefully unpopular president is to ramming through this radical, this avowed central planner, to run our banking system. As the Journal concludes, “Ms. Omarova is the wrong nominee for the wrong industry in the wrong country in the wrong century.”
In case you missed your invitation to Hunter Biden’s big “art” show last week, it was a fabulous celebrity affair at the famous Milk Studios. It attracted hundreds of guests, including of course LA’s leftist mayor, Eric Garcetti, for poses with the celebrated producer of what might best be trademarked as crackhead crap.
Of course, the value of art is in the eye of the beholder — and those who want to curry favor with POTUS Biden. Several of Hunter’s creations, priced between $75,000 and $500,000, sold. But I’m sure the identity of the buyers was fully concealed in order not to raise any ethical questions…
Of Biden’s personal participation in gallery sales events, Barack Obama’s former White House ethics chief Walter Shaub said, “I just think that’s absolutely appalling.” Asked about such criticism, JB’s spokesman Jen Psaki said, “I’d refer to the gallerist for questions.” That’s because Joe has outsourced the White House ethics question to “gallerist” Georges Berges — whose only conflict of interest is the windfall he’s receiving from Hunter’s sales.
When Hunter was asked recently about the ethics questions, he responded, “F**k ‘em.”
Hilariously, Berges, the gallery owner who “discovered Hunter,” lists this Biden bio on his website: “A lawyer by profession, Hunter Biden now devotes his energies to the creative arts, bringing innumerable experiences to bear. The results are powerful and impactful paintings ranging from photogenic to mixed media to the abstract. His chosen substrates are canvas, yup paper, wood, and metal on which he affixes oil, acrylic, ink along with the written word; all of which creates a unique experience that has become his signature.”
I mean, after all, according to his non compos mentis father, “Hunter is the smartest guy I know.” So how could anyone doubt his innate artistic ability?
Well, for one, The Washington Post’s art critic, Sebastian Smee, who actually offered an honest assessment of Biden’s art: “You see a certain kind of art in coffee shops. … But you wouldn’t, unless you were related to the artist, spend more than $1,000 on it.” The New York Times described Hunter’s work as “leaning towards the surreal.”
Of the lower-end $75,000 price tags, one observer said: “You can get Rembrandt etchings for less. Much less.” Indeed, like as low as $1,500, but who can compare a 17th-century Dutch master considered to be the greatest visual artist in history to a reformed crack master?
The best assessment of Biden’s LA “art” success comes from Oliver Wiseman, Spectator World magazine’s “DC Diarist.”
According to Wiseman: “Let’s start with something obvious: Hunter’s paintings are not worth their $500,000 price tag. As James Panero put it in The Spectator recently, ‘The abstractions he creates, like the sentiments he conveys, are the stuff of dorm-room posters.’ … What the price tags reveal is not Hunter’s artistic brilliance, but the fact that this is not a market for those looking to decorate the walls of their ski lodge. Rather, it is a market for political influence. … That fact is plainly obvious to anyone not paid to make excuses for the president and his family. … [Biden’s] artwork sales suggest he hasn’t kicked his career-long habit of profiting off his proximity to power.”
“Dorm-room poster” quality? Maybe, as long as there is a black light and a substantial amount of cannabis present.
In yet another sop to the radical Left, the new Superman will come out as a bisexual.
The cultural erosion from a vision for the future of America being that “shining city on a hill,” as Ronald Reagan once said, continues apace. This time, the rainbow “pride flag” has increasingly replaced the Stars and Stripes in the minds and hearts of today’s cultural elites.
Yesterday, on National Coming Out Day, DC Comics announced that the son of Superman, soon to be the new Superman, will be bisexual. That’s right. As Tom Taylor, the comic writer for the new Superman comic sequel series “Superman: Son of Kal-El,” explained, “Everyone needs heroes and everyone deserves to see themselves in their heroes.”
The new Superman, who will be known as Jon Kent, will be “outed” in an upcoming issue where he begins a homosexual relationship and is depicted kissing his male lover. “Over the years in this industry, it probably won’t surprise you to hear I’ve had queer characters and storylines rejected. I felt like I was letting down people I loved every time this happened,” Taylor complained. “But we are in a very different and much more welcome place today than we were 10 or even five years ago. When I was asked if I wanted to write a new Superman with a new #1 for the DC Universe, I knew replacing Clark with another straight white savior could be a real opportunity missed.”
There are practically countless comic book superheroes, and it would be easy to simply give this a shrug and offer a rather defeatist and dismissive, So what? But that response would miss the greater point. This is not merely offering a comic superhero that caters to the sexual proclivities of a small subset of Americans. This is a direct cultural assault on an American icon. Superman is a uniquely American Superhero, who also intentionally represented a Christ-like otherness and goodness.
Superman came from the distant planet of Krypton to in effect save humanity from both themselves and alien forces that sought to do them harm. Superman also proudly represented the American ideal by using his strength to advocate for Liberty and against criminal tyrants. Above all, Superman was good, and he used his power to promote good and defeat evil.
Apparently, however, gone are the days of Superman standing up for “truth, justice, and the American way.” In his place is the new Not-So-Superman who will be standing for “wokeness, social justice, and the leftist way.” How the mighty have fallen.
Editor’s Note: Each week we receive hundreds of comments and correspondences — and we read every one of them. Click here for a few thought-provoking comments about specific articles. The views expressed therein don’t necessarily reflect those of The Patriot Post.
Insight: “One can ignore reality, but one cannot ignore the consequences of ignoring reality.” —Ayn Rand (1905-1982)
“Pretty sure never once in history has someone read a person’s announced pronouns in an email signature and thought ‘wow, so glad they did that, really helpful and necessary.’” —Buck Sexton
“VP Kamala Harris’s parents were from India and Jamaica. The racist Democrat Party refers to her as ‘African American,’ but she is every bit as much ‘Asian American.’ Why?” —Mark Alexander
“Not surprisingly, President Biden took a cheap shot at Columbus in his official White House proclamation. It condemned the ‘painful history of wrongs and atrocities that many European explorers inflicted on Tribal Nations and Indigenous communities’ and the ‘wave of devastation,’ including ‘the introduction and spread of disease.’ Interestingly, whenever conservatives express concerns about illegal aliens spreading diseases, the left immediately accuses them of ‘xenophobia.’” —Gary Bauer
“I’m not in the least bit for defunding the police. Police work is, aside from all the negativity around it, it is very necessary for us to have them and most of them are guys that are doing their job. They’re going about their day-to-day jobs.” —actor Morgan Freeman
Friendly fire I: “These drug cartels, these human traffickers, they are incredibly emboldened to the point where they feel that they can do this without consequence, where they feel they can continue profiting off of trafficking people across these borders that are essentially open. The Biden-Harris administration has an open-door policy at the borders. … The fact is that the open-door policy that this administration has in place … is creating a humanitarian crisis, as well as a very serious security threat for our country.” —Tulsi Gabbard
Friendly fire II: “What do we do about the border? I feel like this is the Democrats’ version of healthcare for the Republicans. The issue they don’t really address, they don’t seem to really have a plan for it. And always is their Achilles’ heel come election time. … Canada is much more to the right on immigration. You have to have a skill. That’s mostly what it’s based on. Ours is mostly based on family. And it’s odd because we still can’t find enough workers in this country.” —Bill Maher
Friendly fire III: “I think this [harassment toward Senator Kyrsten Sinema] is outrageous. You may not like the politics, but when this s*** starts to happen, I don’t know where the safe space is in America. And I don’t know where it ends.” —Bill Maher
Spin doctor: “We certainly don’t see things as darkly as you do. … We have created an average of 500,000 jobs a month. We are at a faster rate of economic growth, a lower rate of unemployment than in quite some time. That’s progress. That’s moving exactly in the right direction. … The president remains confident we’re going to get [the Build Back Better agenda] done. And this is what governing looks like.” —White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki
Pot calling the kettle black: “I think we’re at a very dangerous, continuing high-level attack on the legitimacy of our government and the election of our president.” —Hillary Clinton
Race bait: “Carlos Watson, Sage Steele, Van Jones. What do these three folks have in common? Well, they’re all people who’ve been prompted up by wealthy or powerful white Americans, and yet we, the keepers of the culture, don’t really rock with any of them like that. Now obviously, the three of these folks are most definitely black faces. However, they are not necessarily black voices. And there’s a difference.” —MSNBC’s Tiffany Cross
Eating their own: “There’s only one Democrat for whom I wish future defeat, scandal, and humiliation, and I bet you can guess who that is. Enough, Kyrsten Sinema. Enough of this self-infatuated preening. Enough of helping to drive down President Biden’s poll numbers. Enough of derailing what should have been — what still can and I believe will be, although thanks to the Arizona senator and some others, not on quite the level it could have been — a great moment in this country’s history. Enough, enough, enough. Liberal America, Democratic America, indeed sensible America transcending ideology and party, is sick of you.” —The New Republic editor Michael Tomasky
Non compos mentis: “We Are Republicans With a Plea: Elect Democrats in 2022.” —New York Times op-ed by Miles Taylor and Christine Todd Whitman
And last… “Parents: keep protesting your school’s curriculum. The DOJ can’t do anything about it, and they’re trying to intimidate you. Don’t listen to them.” —Congressman Dan Crenshaw
While hospitals are facing a shortage of nurses across the country due to the vaccine mandate, Candace Owens told “The Brian Kilmeade Show” that President Biden “did not think through” the executive order.
You think this whole data series is bananas now, as job openings soar even as job creation doesn’t? Wait until we see the impact of the forced lay-offs that begin as vaccine mandates are imposed on the labor force. Also imagine what this will mean for strained supply chains: let’s lose a few thousand more truckers, for example, and see where it gets us.
The Fed’s Daly had comments on this over the weekend, noting “everyone is feeling the rising prices, and it’s painful.” However, “Inflation is directly related to Covid,” and hence to unwanted injections rather than unneeded monetary ones. Luckily, Daly doesn’t see this as “a long-term phenomenon,” yet at the same time, “If we continue to have supply bottlenecks and we keep spending, we will have more inflation.” Given stopping spending means a recession, which some suspect the roll-over in US consumer confidence already flags, presumably the onus is on containers, ships, ports, warehouses, roads, truckers, and rail to all just sort themselves out with shots in the arm. Really. Meanwhile, winegrowers in Argentina cannot bottle their grapes due to a lack of glass, a further painful reminder that our problems are far larger than vaccine holdouts.
The energy crisis also continues, with India and China both flagging blackouts that will hit supply chains from another angle – and China seeing massive flooding in the coal-producing region it is relying on to keep the lights running. While ‘gasflation’ is already in focus, energy is needed to make everything, especially the fertilizer needed for food production: and global fertilizer prices just hit the highest level since their 2008 peak, with China, the world’s largest exporter, no longer doing so. So, let’s hum “Yes, we have no bananas today,” while wondering if a pick-up in the Covid vaccination rate is really going to grow any for us.
Local producers did not need a second invitation to do just that, and in less than two weeks, the Chinese thermal coal futures have soared by over 16% to an all time high, spiking above 1,500 yuan per ton overnight, where the jump triggered even more stops ensuring that the move higher would continue.
The move in Chinese coal prices, seen in its long-term context, has been nothing short of staggering.
But while we can certainly admire the view from up there, that doubling in coal prices in just the past month is terrible news for Beijing which is under increasing pressure to cut rates or ortherwise ease financial conditions to contain – or “ringfence” in the parlance of our times – the “disaster” taking place in the Chinese bond market, the commodity price inflation means Xi’s hands may be tied for one simple reason.
Historically, Chinese coal prices – due to their core role as the anchor of China’s energy-intensive economy – have been the asset the most closely has correlated with Chinese wholesale, or factory gate inflation, also known as Producer Prices. And while we wait to get the latest Chinese CPI and PPI print this week, we can already predict what it will be either next month or the month after.
While coal prices were relatively contained one month ago, they have since then exploded. And if the historical correlation between Coal prices and PPI holds, were may be soon looking at a tripling of China’s PPI, which from 9.5% Y/Y in August, is about to soar to 30% or more.
We got the highly anticipated employment report on Friday. It came in far below expectations. But despite weak economic data, bond yields are rising, along with the price of just about everything. Meanwhile, a gold rally fizzled. Peter Schiff talked about it during his podcast, explaining just how badly the markets are misinterpreting the data. When you add up plunging bonds yields, strong oil, and weak economic data – that equals stagflation.
According to the September Labor Department report, the US economy added 194,000 jobs last month. The projection was for around 500,000 new jobs.
A big decline in government jobs helped drive overall job growth down. As Peter noted, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
The only way to pay government workers is through taxes. So, if government workers are not employed, that is actually a benefit for the taxpayer because they’re relieved of the burden of paying their salaries. And of course, a lot of the government work that’s done actually interferes with productivity. We’re actually better off without those workers because the workers are simply getting in the way of the productivity of everybody else.”
The report was “highly anticipated because Jerome Powell specifically said the September job numbers would be instrumental in the Fed’s decision as to whether or not to start the quantitative easing taper.
If this was the number the Fed was hanging its hat on for confirmation that the data supported a taper, well clearly, now that this number is out, if the Fed was basing a decision to taper on this number, well, it’s not going to taper, which is basically what I’ve been saying all along — that the Fed is just bluffing when it comes to any movement to take the punch bowl away.”
Although job creation came in far below expectations, unemployment dropped from 5.2% to 4.8%. On the surface, that seems like a positive. But one of the reasons that number came down is people simply left the workforce. The labor force participation rate went down from 61.7% to 61.6%. Peter said this is another reason the Fed won’t likely taper. Powell has said he’s looking at participation.
The fact that the rate went down is just another reason why the Fed is not going to taper before the end of the year. And of course, if it’s not going to start the taper, when’s it going to start raising rates? Because again, Powell has already said that the rate-raising process — liftoff — that’s not even going to happen until tapering is completed.”
The bottom line is this is a weak jobs report, especially when you consider everybody was expecting a strong jobs report.
Normally, inflation news combined with weak economic data would be a big plus for gold. Gold did initially rally on the bad news – as you would expect. But a rise in interest rates and bond yields weighed on the yellow metal and the rally fizzled.
Meanwhile, oil prices pushed above $80 a barrel. This is the first time we’ve seen oil this high since 2014. Peter said he thinks rising oil prices, along with rising commodity prices more broadly, spooked the bond market. Normally, weak economic data would send bond prices rising and yields falling. Instead, yields went up due to inflation.
Bond yields are only rising because of inflation. They’re not rising because of a strong economy, but higher inflation. That is not negative for gold. Inflation driving bond prices down should also be driving gold prices up. The only reason it’s not is because the market still expects the Fed to fight inflation. Every time we see more evidence of higher inflation, gold gets hammered because investors assume that the Fed’s going to do something. The narrative pretty much goes like this: the Fed thought inflation was transitory and they were wrong. And because they were wrong as more evidence manifests itself that shows that they were wrong, now the Fed is going to have to change their policy and they’re going to have to be more aggressive.”
In fact, some media pundits have expressed concern that the central bank might be too aggressive and overshoot on rates. Peter said this is all nonsense. How can anybody really think the risk is that the Fed will be too tight?
There’s no way that’s going to happen. The risk is the reverse. The risk is that the Fed waits so long to raise rates that by the time they do, it’s too little too late.”
People aren’t buying gold as an inflation hedge because they don’t think there’s any inflation to hedge because they’re confident the Fed is going to put out the fire before it really gets burning.”
The bottom line is we got a very weak jobs report. We have surging oil prices. We have rising bond yields, so interest rates are rising instead of falling to stimulate a weak economy. The dollar index fell.
So, a weakening dollar with rising consumer prices, rising bond yields and weak economic data – that spells stagflation. I mean, stagflation is here.”
“I never thought that I would be living this nightmare.”
“Since the announcement of Ontario’s passport system I have seen my mental health severely deteriorate, and unfortunately I do not see any end in sight.”
These words are from some of the messages I’ve received from unvaccinated people on how vaccine passports and mandates are affecting them.
Unvaccinated people in Canada are being coerced into choosing between getting vaccinated or getting pushed out of their jobs, colleges, and society. We’re forced to choose between something we don’t need — the COVID vaccine — and something we need: our livelihood.
Why are we being forced to lose our livelihoods over a vaccine that isn’t guaranteed to protect our lives? Vaccine passports do not make us more healthy, they make us more hopeless.
Hopelessness is the prevailing theme in many of the messages I’ve received from unvaccinated people:
“I have been under severe stress since the vaccine ‘passport’ was announced here in Ontario. I’m having difficulty sleeping, and difficulty focusing on work, or anything else.”
“I am submitting the following story on behalf of my 18-year-old cousin…I am heartbroken for him and what these mandates mean to his ability to earn a university degree and earn a living. He is currently unemployed and very discouraged by life.”
“I am having a lot of mental anguish about this passport and if I am forced I will have even more mental stress.”
“I feel constant anxiety about this ever-tightening situation and the situations that are yet to come.”
“Many many more sleepless, anxiety-filled nights to come I am sure…”
“I am depressed and cry every morning thinking about my future being ripped from me…I am so sad.”
“I hope we are able to change the way things are going, I personally am frightened and even more frightened by the people who just shrug and say it’s no big deal.”
Many unvaccinated people have become aware that the significant majority of people who consistently boast about how much they care about people suffering from systemic discrimination and “mental health” issues are simply opportunistic frauds.
Nevertheless, we shouldn’t be frightened. We shouldn’t be anxious. And we shouldn’t be hopeless — we should be hopeful.
I hope the messages I’ve received on the vaccine passport change the Ontario government’s policies. When Ontario’s Advocate for Community Opportunities and I share these messages with policy makers, we’re hopeful it could make them end or at least restrain their oppressive policies.
However, I am not resting my hope on better policies by the government. I am not hoping for better politicians in government. My hope isn’t in people who are more concerned about securing their jobs than securing my rights.
My hope is in God.
Psalm 118: 5-9 says:
“In my distress I called to the LORD, and He answered and set me free. The LORD is on my side; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? The LORD is on my side; He is my helper. Therefore I will look in triumph on those who hate me. It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man. It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in princes.”
If we’re distressed, we should pursue God in prayer. When the government oppresses us, God can set us free. If God is on my side, why should I be afraid of the government? Why should I be afraid of they can do to me? God is my helper. It is better to take refuge in God than to trust politicians. It is better to trust God than the government.
If we trust God, then we should be hopeful. However, if we don’t trust God — if we have not believed in Jesus Christ, we are hopeless: we do not have any basis for hope.
You’re not in danger if you’re unvaccinated, you’re in danger if you’re unrighteous. Your unvaccinated status isn’t a death sentence: your unrighteous status is.
Though we’re unrighteous by nature, we Christians have been declared righteous by God through Christ’s life, death, and resurrection — received by faith. Our hope rests in Christ, knowing that just as he ascended to heaven — soon, He’ll descend and return to earth.
Therefore, though some of us have been stripped of our rights over the vaccine — we know our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly anticipate the day when Jesus will return as the King of kings and Lord of lords to renew the world and establish justice forever.
That is our hope.
If you’re not a Christian, however, you do not have hope — not real hope. Who can you call at all times when you’re distressed? Who is on your side when you’re afraid? If God isn’t your helper, why shouldn’t you be afraid of what the government can do to you? If you don’t love Christ, how can you look in triumph on those who hate you?
But more than that, if you have not repented and trusted in Jesus Christ — you will suffer the wrath of God in hell forever. So above all, please hope in the gospel. Hope in Jesus Christ.
The reason why I am not hopeless despite my unvaccinated status is the same reason why I am not hopeless despite my unrighteous status: Jesus Christ.
Christ is the only real hope for unvaccinated and unrighteous people.
Therefore, in my distress, I will call to the LORD, and he will answer and set me free. The LORD is on my side; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? The LORD is on my side; he is my helper.
That is the hope for unvaccinated people like me. I hope you can say the same.
Samuel Sey is a Ghanaian-Canadian who lives in Brampton, a city just outside of Toronto. He is committed to addressing racial, cultural, and political issues with biblical theology, and always attempts to be quick to listen and slow to speak.
In its latest World Economic Outlook report published on Tuesday morning, the International Monetary Fund voiced its starkest caution about stagflation yet, warning that the global economic recovery has lost momentum and become increasingly divided, even as it warned about rising inflation risks.
The fund warned threats to growth had increased, pointing to the delta variant, strained supply chains, accelerating inflation and rising costs for food and fuel. As a result, the IMF trimmed its global growth forecast and now expects world GDP to rise 5.9% this year, down 0.1% from what it anticipated in July and a bounce from the 3.1% contraction of 2020. The 2022 forecast was unchanged at 4.9%.
The IMF also cautioned that this modest headline revision “masks large downgrades for some countries” adding that “the outlook for the low-income developing country group has darkened considerably due to worsening pandemic dynamics. The downgrade also reflects more difficult near-term prospects for the advanced economy group, in part due to supply disruptions. Partially offsetting these changes, projections for some commodity exporters have been upgraded on the back of rising commodity prices. Pandemic-related disruptions to contact-intensive sectors have caused the labor market recovery to significantly lag the output recovery in most countries.”
Pointing to this “dangerous divergence” in economic prospects across countries, the IMF said that this remains “a major concern.” And while the IMF trimmed its growth outlook, it also warned that the global economy is entering a phase of inflationary risk, and called on central banks to be “very, very vigilant” and take early action to tighten monetary policy should price pressures prove persistent.
“Emerging and developing economies, faced with tighter financing conditions and a greater risk of de-anchoring inflation expectations, are withdrawing policy support more quickly despite larger shortfalls in output” the report cautioned.
“Overall, risks to economic prospects have increased, and policy trade-offs have become more complex,” Gita Gopinath, the fund’s director of economic research, said in the report’s introduction. “The dangerous divergence in economic prospects across countries remains a major concern.”
Among the world’s biggest economies, the IMF cut its 2021 forecast for the U.S. by a full percentage point to 6%, mainly because of supply constraints, but boosted its 2022 estimate to 5.2% from 4.9%.
The IMF also forecast that China will grow at a rate of 8% this year and drop to 5.6% next, both a decline of 0.1 point from July; expect both of these to be revised sharply lower as Citi warned that China is now entering a period of acute, if brief, stagflation. Countering this, the IMF raised its projection for the euro area to 5% for this year from 4.6%, and kept its 2022 estimate at 4.3%. Forecasts for Japan, the U.K., Germany and Canada were all cut for this year, but lifted for 2022. Low-income countries were tipped to advance just 3% this year, a slicing of 0.9 point from July.
Still, it wasn’t all bad: as investors are growing increasingly concerned about the threat of stagflation, the IMF provided some comfort by saying inflation will subside to 2% in advanced economies by the middle of 2022 after peaking in the final months of this year, in other words it took is in the “transitory” camp. But it bet emerging and developing economies would still see consumer prices gain 4.9% next year after 5.5% this year.
The IMF calculated gross domestic product for advanced economies will regain its pre-pandemic level in 2022 and even exceed it by 0.9% in 2024. But only two-thirds were seen regaining their earlier employment levels. In contrast, it predicted that emerging and developing markets would still undershoot their pre-pandemic forecast by 5.5% in 2024.
The disparity is based chiefly in differences on vaccine access and policy support. About 60% of people are vaccinated against Covid-19 in rich countries, but less than 5% in low-income nations, it said. Emerging economies are also withdrawing policy support more quickly and face outsized pain from costlier food.
Overall, the fund cautioned that inflation risks are “skewed to the upside” and those for growth are “tilted to the downside.” Sounds like a pretty clear warning that stagflation is imminent to us, even if Gita Gopinath, the IMF’s chief economist, said the strength of the economic recovery meant it was too early to “say anything about stagflation”, despite some supply shortages which have also boosted inflation.
“We always knew coming out of this deep contraction that the supply-demand mismatch would pose problems,” she told the Financial Times. “The hope was that it would even itself out by around this time of the year . . . But we’ve been hit with additional shocks, including some weather-related shocks, that certainly makes that imbalance persist longer,” Gopinath said.
The IMF’s central forecast is that inflation will rise sharply towards the end of the year, moderate in mid-2022 and then fall back to pre-pandemic levels, similar to the prevailing central bank narrative. But its report also noted that “inflation risks are skewed to the upside” and advised central banks to act if price pressures showed signs of lasting.
Hilariously, even as it warned about rising inflation threats, the fund said central banks should generally ignore higher prices that stemmed from energy price shocks or temporary difficulties in bringing products to market. But it should act if there are signs that companies, households or workers start to expect high inflation to linger.
“What [central banks] have to watch out for is the second-round effects [with] these increases in energy prices feeding into wages and then feeding into core prices. That’s where you have to be very, very vigilant,” Gopinath said.
The report was clear that “central banks . . . should be prepared to act quickly if the recovery strengthens faster than expected or risks of rising inflation expectations become tangible”.
That means getting ahead of the curve on prices even if employment is still weak, the IMF recommended, as that is preferable to allowing inflationary mindsets to become ingrained. “A spiral of doubt could hold back private investment and lead to precisely the slower employment recovery central banks seek to avoid when holding off on policy tightening,” the IMF warned.
In other words, don’t do anything if inflation is transitory but step in quickly if it isn’t. If only central banks knew which is which.
There was another warning: the IMF said that In financial markets “stretched asset valuations” meant investor sentiment could shift rapidly by adverse news on the pandemic or policy. Amid pressing concerns are the impasse over the U.S. federal debt limit and possible weakness in China’s property sector.
Finally, the IMF also had some suggestions on the biggest strawman issue around: climate change. As a meeting of international governments on fighting climate change nears at the end of the month, the fund said “stronger concrete commitments” are needed, including tailored international carbon price floors and $100 billion of support for developing nations. It also called again on rich countries to channel a recent bolstering of IMF resources to more needy counterparts.
Looking further out, the fund said if Covid-19 has a prolonged impact, it could reduce global GDP by $5.3 trillion over the next five years relative to current projections. That could be offset if governments intensify efforts to equalize vaccine access.