Eureka Video Widget

Monday, September 29, 2008


I know I can go to Thomas to view a past vote of my representative. Do you know where to go to follow the votes as they are being voted upon?

I'm trying to follow what my rep is doing on the bailout.


Update: I know how my rep voted, but the question remains. I'd like to follow along in the future.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

More Lifeway Pleasantness

Recently I wrote of negative experiences at Lifeway using my minister's discount card. Now Fox News has this gem:

Magazine Featuring Female Pastors Pulled From Shelves, 'Treated Like Pornography'

ATLANTA — The five women on the cover are dressed in black and smiling — not an uncommon strategy for selling magazines.

But these cover girls are women of the cloth, featured in Gospel Today magazine's latest issue, which the Southern Baptist Convention has pulled from the shelves at its bookstores, though the magazine is available for sale upon request.

The group says women pastors go against its beliefs, according to its interpretation of the New Testament. The magazine was taken off stands in more than 100 Lifeway Christian Bookstores across the country, including six in metro Atlanta.

Published for nearly 20 years, Gospel Today is the largest and most widely distributed urban Christian publication in the country, with a circulation of 240,000. The magazine's publisher, Teresa Hairston, said she was just reporting on a trend, not trying to promote women pastors.

"They basically treated it like pornography and put it behind the counter," she said. "Unless a person goes into the store and asks for it, they won't see it displayed."

Click on the Fox News link above to read the rest of the article.

HT: Quixote

Friday, September 19, 2008

Strange Confessions

I love animals. That is not strange and not my strange confession. My strange confession is that I love otters. Whenever I go to the Texas State Aquarium, I could stand and watch the river otters for the longest time. With that in mind, I hope this makes your day.

Can you feel the love?

Thursday, September 18, 2008


This is a test. Stan McCullars has this great post on a cool gadget called RefTagger.

It inserts pop up boxes of the verses referenced, but you have to use the right abbreviations.

Heb 4:12, Jer 20:9, Ps 1.1

Thanks for the tip Stan!

How To Be a Pentecostal In a Postmodern Society

I'm posting this video as a test for Brian.

Obama's New Spanish Language TV Ad Es Erróneo

Via Jake Tapper

From the Fact Check Desk: Obama's New Spanish Language TV Ad Es Erróneo

September 17, 2008 5:53 PM

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., has launched a new Spanish-language TV ad that seeks to paint Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., as anti-immigrant, even tying the Republican to his longtime conservative talk-radio nemesis Rush Limbaugh.

As first reported by the Washington Post, Obama's ad features a narrator saying: "They want us to forget the insults we’ve put up with…the intolerance…they made us feel marginalized in this country we love so much."

The screen then shows these two quotes from Limbaugh:

“…stupid and unskilled Mexicans”
—Rush Limbaugh

"You shut your mouth or you get out!”
—Rush Limbaugh

The narrator then says, “John McCain and his Republican friends have two faces. One that says lies just to get our vote…and another, even worse, that continues the policies of George Bush that put special interests ahead of working families. John McCain…more of the same old Republican tricks.”

There are some real factual problems with this ad, which is titled “Dos Caras,” or two faces.

First of all, tying Sen. McCain – especially on the issue of immigration reform – to Limbaugh is unfair.

Limbaugh opposed McCain on that issue. Vociferously. And in a larger sense, it’s unfair to link McCain to Limbaugh on a host of issues since Limbaugh, as any even occasional listener of his knows, doesn’t particularly care for McCain.

Second, the quotes of Limbaugh’s are out of context.

Railing against NAFTA in 1993, Limbaugh said, "If you are unskilled and uneducated, your job is going south. Skilled workers, educated people are going to do fine 'cause those are the kinds of jobs NAFTA is going to create. If we are going to start rewarding no skills and stupid people, I'm serious, let the unskilled jobs that take absolutely no knowledge whatsoever to do -- let stupid and unskilled Mexicans do that work."

Not one of his most eloquent moments, to be sure, but his larger point was that NAFTA would mean that unskilled stupid Mexicans would be doing the jobs of unskilled stupid Americans.

I’m not going to defend how he said it, but to act as if this was just a moment of Limbaugh slurring Mexicans is not accurate. Though again, certainly if people were offended I could understand why.

The second quote is totally unfair. In 2006, Limbaugh was mocking Mexican law, and he wrote:

“Everybody's making immigration proposals these days. Let me add mine to the mix. Call it The Limbaugh Laws:

“First: If you immigrate to our country, you have to speak the native language. You have to be a professional or an investor; no unskilled workers allowed. Also, there will be no special bilingual programs in the schools with the Limbaugh Laws. No special ballots for elections. No government business will be conducted in your language. Foreigners will not have the right to vote or hold political office.

“If you're in our country, you cannot be a burden to taxpayers. You are not entitled to welfare, food stamps, or other government goodies. You can come if you invest here: an amount equal to 40,000 times the daily minimum wage. If not, stay home. But if you want to buy land, it'll be restricted. No waterfront, for instance. As a foreigner, you must relinquish individual rights to the property.

“And another thing: You don't have the right to protest. You're allowed no demonstrations, no foreign flag waving, no political organizing, no bad-mouthing our President or his policies. You're a foreigner: shut your mouth or get out! And if you come here illegally, you're going to jail.

“You think the Limbaugh Laws are harsh? Well, every one of the laws I just mentioned are actual laws of Mexico today! That' how the Mexican government handles immigrants to their country. Yet Mexicans come here illegally and protest in our streets!

“How do you say ‘double standard’ in Spanish? How about: ‘No mas!’”

But even if one is uninclined to see Limbaugh's quotes as having been taken unfairly out of context, linking them to McCain makes as much sense as running a quote from Bill Maher and linking it to Obama.

Asked for backup as to how Obama could link McCain to Limbaugh, the campaign provided this interview with McCain refusing to condemn the Minutemen from from the Kansas City Star:

Q: ‘Are they a good thing? The Civil Defense Corps, do you think -- do they help in the immigration fight, or not?’

A: ‘I think they're citizens who are entitled to being engaged in the process. They're obviously very concerned about immigration.’

Q: ‘Are they helpful?’

A: ‘I think that's up to others to judge. I don't agree with them, but they certainly are exercising their legal rights as citizens.’

Asked about the “lies” they’re accusing McCain of telling, the Obama campaign provided evidence that McCain in July 2008 told La Raza that he would have voted for the DREAM act, a bill that provides scholarships for the children of illegal immigrants, even thought he earlier in the campaign season said he would have voted against the bill.

Let’s delver further into this.

In the November 2007, Myrtle Beach Sun-News, McCain said of the DREAM Act, which he had cosponsored in the past, "I think it has certain virtues associated with it. And I think other things have virtues associated with it. But the message is they want the borders secured first."

The newspaper noted that McCain said he’d vote against a temporary worker program, even though he supports the idea. "I will vote against anything until we secure the borders," he said. "There is no way we're going to enact piecemeal immigration reform."

Before La Raza, McCain was asked by a young Latina if he’d support the DREAM Act, and he said, “Yes. Yes.”

The full exchange, however, goes like this:

QUESTIONER: Hi. I’m a part of One Dream 2009 and I am one of the 6 million who either have an undocumented parent or is undocumented and I wanted to know if you would support humanity all around the world and support our Dream Act that we are trying to pass.

MCCAIN: Yes. Yes. Thank you. But I will also enforce the existing laws of a country. And a nation’s first requirement is the nation’s security, and that’s why we have to have our borders secured. But, we can have a way and a process of people obtaining citizenship in this country. And, we cannot penalize people who come here legally and people who wait legally. And so, that’s a fundamental principle on which we have to operate. Thank you.

The Obama campaign also provided a number of seemingly conflicting comments McCain has made about offering greater funding for education programs in the No Child Left Behind act -- telling the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials in June that he “would fully fund those programs that have never been fully funded,” while not suggesting any greater funding for the bill when he’s talked about education in front of whiter audiences.

That ignores the fact that McCain has suggested reallocating the way the $23 billion for NCLB is spent.

McCain has changed his rhetoric and his emphasis when discussing immigration after almost losing the GOP presidential nomination because of it.

He now says the borders must be secured before anything else happens. And in that, he’s opened himself up to charges of flip-flopping, though the Obama campaign is quoting him selectively and unfairly to make their points.

The greater implication the ad makes, however, is that McCain is no friend to Latinos at all, beyond issues of funding the DREAM act or how NCLB money is distributed. By linking McCain to Limbaugh’s quotes, twisting Limbaugh’s quotes, and tying McCain to more extremist anti-immigration voices, the Obama campaign has crossed a line into misleading the viewers of its new TV ad. In Spanish, the word is erróneo.

-- jpt

McCain Sings Streisand


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The United States and the Church

Stan McCullars has a post that prompted me to share this thought I've been considering for the past week.

It seems that the United States and the church in the U.S. have a lot in common. Before I'm branded a heretic finish reading this. We are both hated until we are needed. Every time there is a crisis on the other side of the world, the response is "Call the Americans!" Every time there is a disaster or someone needs help, the response is "Call a church." In that way, we share a lot in common.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Thank You, Sony

I have been working out a lot lately, and I quite enjoy it. I put on my music, and away I go. The club I go to has TV monitors where you tune in to an FM frequency to listen. So, I have an Insignia Pilot from Best Buy with a Boostaroo to make the music louder. The headphones I was using sound great (Bose ear buds), but after a while they would slip out of my ear from the sweat.

This put me on a quest for new headphone that would not slip and had good sound. The first pair I bought was from Altec Lansing. I thought it would work because they had the ear clip. Silly me was not paying enough attention to notice that it was ear buds and not the ones that go in your ear. Ear buds tend to hurt.

Then I bought the Sony headphones in the above picture. I tried them out today, and they were great. They are designed to withstand the moisture, so they don't slip. The sound great, even when the music is really loud.

So thank you Sony for helping my workout today and in the future.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


I went to Lifeway Christian Stores today to pick up some items. I was pleased that they had the NLT Study Bible, so I bought a copy for myself and my nephew. When I was checking out I pulled out my minister's discount card. They asked if it was for me, and I said one Bible was and the other was not. Then the checker asked if it was personal or for the church. By that time, I was slightly peeved. So I told her that the question does not really make sense.

How do you differentiate between a Bible for church use or personal use? If I study at home for a class I'm teaching then is it for the church? If I study at home for personal growth, then does it not count? Does Lifeway really think our lives are so demarcated that we have no personal benefit from Bible study for church? Where is their line?

They really made me appreciate Cokesbury. When I shop there, the discount applies simply by pulling up my account. If there is a Y on the label, I get a discount; If there is a N, then I don't. Very simple without a grilling.

This encounter at Lifeway was so irritating that I really do not want to shop there anymore. This "minister discount grilling" is not the first I encountered there. It makes me wonder if their response would be the same if I were a guy wearing a sport coat. I was wearing a black T-shirt that says, "My imaginary friend thinks you have serious problems." Today my imaginary friend was right.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

So Sad

When I go to the mail box and it is there, I feel like it is Christmas. There is that plastic covering with the paper card stock. When I notice it in the box, I my reaction is just shy of Steve Martin in "The Jerk" at the arrival of the phone book: "The new phone book is here. The new phone book is here." When it arrives I border on giddy with glee. But not today.

It started that way, but when I read the special text on paper card stock it said: "Last Issue." It seems as though Christian History and Biography will no longer be published. They are going to make up the difference in my subscription with Christianity Today issues, but I am thinking of seeing if they will send my money back. It is nothing against CT; I just loved Christian History and Biography.

So sad. It is a good thing the NFL started tonight.