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Monday, March 30, 2009

35 Years and Still Makin' Music!


Tomorrow I will have been married to My Sweet Baboo for 35 years.

That seems like it ought to be a long time and there are time it feels like we've always been together. I have, after all, been with the Missus for more years than I was with anyone else.

It has been a ride. I met her in the ladies room. I was working as a janitor in a nursing home and she was an aide and taking my great great aunt to the potty at the time. I was scrubbing the toilet at the time. I remember being struck by this leggy Louisiana girl and as she walked back down the hall to get Aunt Ethel, I stuck my head out the door and watched her walk away. It was an inspiring sight.

Then I asked around and found out she was engaged. I remember telling my best friend it looked like all the best ones were taken. I did, however, discover that she liked to play gospel music for the residents on Saturday afternoons after she got off work. I started showing up with my guitar and playing with her and Mrs. Nix, an LVN who joined us on the piano - she had a powerful left handed Southern gospel style. The seniors loved it.

Then Sheila's fiancee found out she was playing music with some long-haired local boy and he showed up with his guitar. I remember him standing across the room looking at me like I was a rattlesnake. We had some intense music that afternoon, but the future Mrs. King seemed blissfully unaware of the tension between us. She was all about the music.

We went off for the summer - me to camp, she to some youth ministry deal in Oklahoma. When I got back to college, I'd been dumped by yet another girl. It was my 7th time being dumped. I was tired of it, so I got down on my knees and prayed. I told God I was through looking and if he meant me to find someone, He'd have to take care of it.

Two weeks later, Sheila asked me to sit with her on the bus to a Bible Conference and play some music. She'd just broken up with her fiancee and I'd just been dumped so neither of us were looking for a new romance. We circled round each other all weekend. Both our exes were there, but we kept bumping into each other. Finally, on the bus ride back, we'd just finished a song and were trying to think up another one to do. Suddenly it was as if someone smacked me on the back of the head. I literally saw a flash of light and it was like God said, "Hey, stupid. This is the one!" She had the same exact experience (except God didn't call her "stupid") at the same instant. We fumbled for each others hands and in that moment we knew this was it.

Everybody told us it was a mistake. Our exes even tried another run at us to no avail. Her ex even tried to beat me up in a student association haunted house where he poured fake blood over my head and pushed me around. My best friend warned her against me and almost succeeded in breaking us up, but God would have his way. We were perfectly pitiful lost lambs and our marriage should have been doomed, but God apparently knows his stuff.



We soon had 3 wonderful kids - all with sweet dispositions and tender hearts and we love them dearly. We struggled, worked in one nonprofit or mission type project after another, We've done well. We've been flat broke. We've had every bit of the "in sickness, in health, for richer, for poorer" the world can throw at us.

But God knows his business. I needed her gift for creating peace and orderliness because on my own, my life is chaos. She needed my mule-headedness, patience and gift for handling crisis. Together we complete each other. We fit like two pieces of a puzzle.

So, tomorrow, we're 35 years together going on billions more. We plan to share digs in heaven and the new Earth since neither of us can imagine doing anything remotely fun without the other. She'll have her music back and I hope to be able to carry a tune without needing the bucket. Ya'll come by the house and sit a spell. Bring your banjos and your fiddles or whatever else you play. We'll raise the rafters together......

.

Does the Bible Rot Your Brain?


I'm getting a little tired of being talked down to by people who think that if I believe the Bible is a reliable document and guide to life that my IQ must be down there with those of fans of "Cops" and the developmentally disabled.

I'm sick of hearing diatribes about how the Bible is full of errors and contradictions and you couldn't get all those animals in the ark and besides, I don't believe God really wants us to do all those things it says we have to do anyway.

Okay, I get it. You think the Bible is too restrictive and you've fortunately found enough hooks to hang your doubts on that you can reject all those "thou shalt nots" without feeling too terribly guilty. Besides, a God that's kind of ethereal and impersonal will pretty much let you do what you want and doesn't really care about your behavior.

As the church lady used to say, "How convenient!"



Look, I know a lot of folks who take the Bible and turn it into a hammer to pound people on the head with. I've been the poundee enough times to know how that feels, so I get it. I went through my own period of comfortable agnosticism and used to criticize things about the church to make myself feel good about my decision to relegate God to the second or third tier of my priority list.

Then one day I had my own experience on the road to Emmaus. I met God - at least I got a little peek at his face. I was so stunned that I went to my knees and said, "Okay, God I want to know more. I'm not sure I believe in you, but you make perfect sense to me. I want to believe and I'll study and pray and all that, but you have to show me yourself. I can't go any farther if you don't."

I bought a pocket Bible and began reading it. I walked everywhere back then in my college days. I read it while I walked. Since then, I've worn out about 6 or 7 Bibles - literally had them fall apart from use.

Do parts of scripture confuse me? Yep.

Do parts seem contradictory? Yes, they do

Do parts seem to contradict science and history? I thought so at first.

I didn't read the Bible exclusively. I read extensively in history, mathematics, philosophy, religion, science and art. I have a pretty thorough-going liberal arts education and an IQ that is (I was told by my high school guidance counselor) more than adequate for advanced studies in those areas.

What I found was that as I read the whole Bible as well as history, science and the rest, I found there the face of God. I could, through all of it, trace God's dealings with mankind throughout the ages and see how his purpose is worked out time and time and time again.

When you see that Scripture was written by ordinary men in their own words (they did not take dictation from God - I don't believe it was anything like automatic writing), then you begin to see what they saw. It was the hand of God time and again in the affairs of fallible and often wicked men, working out His will for us all. Even if you accept the skeptic claims that much was written long after the fact, still the prophecies are stunning in their accuracy. The philosophical underpinnings of the Hebrew religion is so impossibly advanced over the primitive animist religions of those who surrounded them, you have to wonder how that happened. No one in those days had anything like a "golden rule", but there it is in Deuteronomy. The stories and so-called fables of the Bible appear in other places in the ancient world - much as you would expect them to if events told were witnessed by many different people throughout the ancient world. Scraps of archaeology reaffirm Biblical accounts that a few decades ago were dismissed as foolish tales with no basis in fact whatsoever. Then, oops, we turn over some rocks and earth and find confirmation. Physicists have to posit an almost infinite number of multiple parallel universes in order to explain how the cosmic crap shoot came up with a perfectly constructed universe that supports life as this one does in order to avoid admitting there might be a God behind it all.

Can I help it if some foolish people use the Bible as a club or a book of magic or twist its words to their own purpose? That's not my fault and it's certainly not God's. It's what you would expect an enemy to do, if there were such an enemy, especially one of the horns and tail and pitchfork variety. He'd first want to discredit the book upon which the Judeo-Christian faith is based. Best way to do that is to smuggle his own people into the faith and get them to confuse the faithful. Are we surprised then that Satan has his own terrorists out there wearing priestly robes and fondling the choir boys?

You would expect that if there really were such a person as Satan.

Scripture itself is a rather powerful indicator that God has a hand in things. It's a wonderfully versatile document. It can act as a book of spiritual incantations for those who need a simplistic faith that relies on magic ideas, repetition, familiar ritual and reassuring symbolism. It can act as a book of deep philosophy challenging the mind of the intellectual and inviting one to think deep things. It can comfort, cajole, threaten or plead. It can educate, guide and break your very heart.

At least that has been my experience. Was the earth made in 7 literal days? Did Noah actually take all those animals on his ark? To me it doesn't matter. I have no need to prove that God exists. I have met my Maker myself on the road to Emmaus, out upon the wide waters, among the poor and the wealthy. I have seen his hand in a million miracles every day and experienced some very profound personal miracles - witnessed live and in color.

So do I care about the supposed errors and contradictions and problems with the Bible? No!

I know the editor! I've read it enough times to understand what He wants me to know and what he wants me to do with my life. What I don't yet understand, it's my experience that one day I will understand it perfectly. I am content as one who walks a road, knows where he is going, but cannot see his destination clearly yet because there is still some distance to go.

So I do not care to hear your account of how you figured out how not to feel guilty over your pet sins anymore by picking apart the Bible. I've heard it. In the end, you're only kidding yourself, but then that's between you and God isn't it.

Yours in Christ,

Tom King

Friday, March 13, 2009

Doublethink: Tools of the Trade in 2009


A recent survey of Britishers (who were evidently strapped to a polygraph on completion of the survey), discovered that 2 out of 3 lied about what books they have read. The book that Englishmen and women lied about having read most frequently?

George Orwell's 1984!

The classic novel about totalitarian society run amok is apparently on the top of everyone's "ought to read" list as well as on the top of their "don't want to read" list.

Orwell would not have been surprised. Everybody thought that when 1984 passed safely that maybe we were going to miss Orwell's more dire predictions. Some enterprising souls, I remember, tried to make Ronald Reagan out to be Big Brother. They were never very successful. Reagan always came off as more of an avuncular uncle than as someone who wanted to control your very thoughts or peer at you through your TV set.

Reagan was too busy tossing back a brewski after hours with Tip O'Neal to spend his time worrying about what people were thinking anyway.

The survey may explain why Britain has, while decrying everything from McDonald's Quarter Pounders to Tony Blair as "Orwellian", steadily slid toward the very socialistic nightmare that Orwell predicted. (Did you know you can't walk anywhere in downtown London without having your face scanned repeatedly by hidden cameras and run through facial recognition software). Sadly, their American cousins are right behind them standing at the top of the slope, sled in hand!

The word "doublethink" is an Orwellian invention, just for the novel that pretty accurately describes the Alice in Wonderland convolutions of liberal politics in the good old U.S. of A. of late. Doublethink is, as described by Orwell, "holding two contradictory beliefs in your mind at the same time and believing both of them."

It's easy if you try. Here are some examples:

1. The planet is warming because of man-made carbon production
AND
The planet has been cooling for the past decade

How do you reconcile it. The planet is cooling BECAUSE of global warming.

I'm taking Tylenol now before this goes any further.



2. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are working fine under the Congress' supervision and we don't need any further regulation or supervision says Barney Franks and Maxine Waters, dismissing warning of problems by the president and Republicans in Congress.

AND 6 months later.....

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac collapsed because there wasn't enough regulation and supervision

How do you reconcile it. "Eight years of failed policies under the Bush Administration" Say that over and over and over again....

I'm putting duct tape over my head to keep my brains from leaking out!



3. We are stealing from our children's future by spending 80 billion dollars on this war in Iraq and Afghanistan!!!!

AND

We are preserving our children's future by spending this 700 billion dollars to prop up failing banks and corporations.

How do we reconcile this? "We need hope and change." Say it over and over and over and......



4. Corporate greed got us into this economic mess.

AND

We can fix this big mess by giving truckloads of money to the big corporations

We reconcile this how? "Eight years of Failed Policies by the Bush Administration means we need hope and change".


As you wade through the news, the speeches and even our children's "New" history books (an exercise in Newspeak and Doublethink if you ever want to see it in action), you get the feeling something is wrong. You're not sure what, but something is definitely wrong.

The beauty of doublethink is that it's a self-sustaining self-deception. You create a lie that supports your belief. That lie covers the truth that challenges your belief. You lie to yourself that the truth was a lie and the new lie is, in fact, the truth. Then you cover up the fact that you've lied by believing you've told the truth because if you've told the truth then the new truth supports your belief system and there never was anything to contradict that belief system. Now should the new truth develop problems, you simply create a new lie which becomes the new truth and then you lie to yourself and convince yourself that you never made up a new truth and that the old lie was a lie (since it truly was a lie anyway because you told that lie to cover up the original truth which, by now you've convinced yourself was a lie since it contradicted your belief). As you layer lie upon lie you become more adept at believing that the new lies are the truth and at believing you are not, in fact, lying at all, but are creating truth (since the new truths support your beliefs).

You try to get your head around it, but your best buddy tells you not to worry. Don't you know. Everybody knows that we need hope and change. We can trust the president. The stock market is in free fall because it has to get worse before it can get better. Spending like a maniac won't get you, personally, out of hock, but that's how it works for the government. How do we know? Why Obama has said so and he's the smartest president ever. How do I know? Everybody knows that!

For 8 years, the Bush Administration has been accused of wanting to be Big Brother and to control everyone's lives.

The proposed antidote to the oppressive Bush government?
  • Make the government bigger
  • Bring the military back home and create a military style homeland security force to keep the population in line in case of "emergencies".
  • Take over the banks,
  • More federal control of schools,
  • Government mandated preschools (get the kids into training and indoctrination sooner).
  • Take over the auto industry,
  • Take over the housing industry,
  • Take over the health care industry,
  • Take away incentives to give to charity and give the money to the government instead through taxes so they can choose what charities are "deserving" of government support.
  • Take away secret ballots and get every worker into a union.
  • Never let a crisis go to waste!

God help us!



I need more duct tape!

Just one man's opinion

Tom King

(c) 2009 by Tom King

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Virtual-Village.org Goes Live!


Hi folks,

I'm pleased to announce that Virtual-Village.org is live and online as of today.

WHO ARE WE?
We are a community of people with a mission. Our missions are as diverse as the people who live in the neighborhoods, towns, cities and communities that make up our world. Virtual Village brings together information, organizational tools and most importantly, some of the smartest most experienced folks from the nonprofit, faith-based and advocacy fields. If you have a passion to do something good for your community, we invite you to join us here. We'd all love to help you get it going!

What's up so far
It's a Beta Site - the bare bones of the website with basic tools in place. Over the coming months we'll be adding a whole raft of new features like friends tools, chat room, collaborative grant writing tool and an online shop.

In the meantime we need your help.

What Virtual Village will become depends a great deal on you the membership. Don't be afraid to let us know what you think we need, what we're doing right and what we're doing wrong. Your active participation will help guide us toward making this the most effective nonprofit networking site ever.

PLEASE GO TO: http://Virtual-Village.org
AND SIGN UP FOR A FREE MEMBERSHIP.

It only take a couple of minutes. You can add more to your on-line resume whenever you want.

Please give us just a few minutes of your time each day to check in, trade ideas, stories and experiences with your fellow laborers in the vineyards. I promise it will be worth your time.

Welcome aboard and thanks for your help.

Tom King

Monday, March 09, 2009

An Open Letter to the People of Great Britain

March 9, 2009

Dear Friends in Britain:

I would like to personally apologize for the shabby treatment received by Prime Minister Brown on his recent trip to the United States of America. President Obama's behavior toward Mr. Brown was not at all in accordance with the deep feelings of kinship that all thinking Americans have towards Great Britain and her people.

Great Britain is not just "another nation like all the rest" as some White House flunky so badly put it. You are our nation's spiritual parent and you are our brothers in arms. You have fought alongside us in every conflict that has challenged our two nations for more than a century. We share a deep love of liberty and together believe that great power should be used for great good.

I and many of my fellow Americans pledge ourselves today to seek new leadership for our country; a leadership that does recognize who our friends are and that understands how to treat those friends with the respect and honor due them. We are deeply sorry for any offense Mr. Obama may have given to Mr. Brown, to Queen Elizabeth or to the people of Great Britain.

While I may not have voted for the guy, he does represent me and he will hear of my displeasure. He has asked us for our cooperation as patriotic Americans in these trying times. Well, in return, we expect to get a little cooperation from him as well. One thing we absolutely insist on is that he not insult or belittle our friends - not now. Not in these times when dark forces are arrayed against us.

Thank you for your patience. Pray for us! We're really going to need it!

Sincerely,

Tom King
Flint, Texas

The Road to the "Mother" land.


Socialism is like government by your mother. Let me explain how I came to this conclusion:

1. Everything is provided for you (including your laundry).

2. You are told what kind of job you need to have.

3. You are told where you should live (usually mother provided housing)

4. You are told who to date (and don't worry about getting married - no rush. Your mother loves you, that's all you need to remember and use protection).

5. You are told how to spend your money.

6. You have your health care paid for.

7. You have free food, but they make you feel guilty for taking it.

8. Mom & Dad pay for pretty much everything and Dad gripes about it all the time.

9. If you try to move out on your own, Mom cuts you off the free stuff and you have to start paying for everything.

10. Eventually, you wind up 40 years old and living in your mother's basement eating Ding Dongs, playing Halo III 12 hours a day and trading Pokemon cards on eBay to earn spending money.

Welcome to Socialism!!!

Now if they'll just legalize marijuana, how sweet would that be?

Tom King
(c) 2009

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Much Ado about Posse'

The new 'powers-that-be' in America are talking about a fundamental change in role of the U.S. military in homeland security. You'll hear a lot in the coming debate from the conservative side about something called "Posse Comitatus", an 1878 act of Congress which supposedly prevents the US military from being involved in homeland law enforcement. You'll also hear from the liberal side that the Posse Comitatus act is 130 years old and doesn't actually have anything to do with the military being involved in law enforcement. This is, in fact, the exact opposite of the arguments they all took in this debate just 5 short years ago.

As usual, the truth is somewhere floating around in the political-philosophical plankton. In 2003 the ACLU set up a hue and cry at the establishment of US Northern Command (NorthCOM) by the Army as a response to the threat of terrorism in the U.S.. There was a lot of discussion about the Posse Comitatus act at the time, with folks on the left citing Posse Comitatus as their authority for opposing this terrible grab for power by the Bush administration. The furor eventually died away, especially after the 2006 elections made it evident that the tide of power was shifting left.

Turns out they were only concerned about military intervention on American soil if President Bush was president at the time. Seems they have no such qualms about President Obama. Recently Barak Obama suggested that we establish a couple of quick response Army battalions for use by homeland security in the US in the event of a large scale terrorist attack. This proposal garnered no howls of protest from the guardians of our liberties on the left. I think I heard crickets!

Seems the argument is not about having the club. It's about whose hands the club is in. Jack boots do not enslave people. People enslave people.

So let me wade into this quagmire and see if we can fish out some facts.

In the first place, the military does on occasion dabble in law enforcement here in the good old USA.

Don't you people watch NCIS? Anybody remember the National Guard's participation in the Civil Rights unrest during the 60's.

Second, Posse Comitatus doesn't provide us any protection against the military meddling in stuff that happens on American soil. The original act simply forbids local law enforcement from calling up US troops (the US Cavalry at the time) to act as a posse (hense the name Posse Comitatus). The law says Sheriff Smith can't order the local Green Beret to join in a manhunt for the bootlegger that slipped out the back door of the county jail without the president's permission. That's all!

Over the years, military commanders stretched their interpretation of the law to keep thier troops out of local politics and legal entanglements. It was convenient for them to do so. It also got them out of the nastiness that was going on in the South over reconstruction.

Over the past 130 years, Americans have come to view the Posse Comitatus Act, however, as a protection against the kind of jack-booted thuggery against our own citizens that we witnessed in Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union in the 20th century. Unfortunately, the 1878 Act provides only a false sense of security. Posse Comitatus offers us no such protection from the military. Military experts have been busily "clarifying" Posse Comitatus for the past decade and with the rising threat of terrorism, the US government and the military, through the offices of FEMA and Homeland security, have put in place the equipment and facilities that could easily be misused by a despotic administration. This includes:

  • Prepositioned internment camps designed to house disaster victims or disruptive elements of the populace in a national emergency (can you say "martial law").
  • Army plans for training and prepositioning regular troops to reinforce state or national guard troops and to assume populace control responsibilities in an "emergency".
  • A recent discussion about giving the president power to over-ride state governors and order both national guard and regular troops into "crisis zones" without permission from the states. Some commentator maintain that he already has the power to do that. You may remember the Civil War was fought partly over the use of Federal troops against US citizens.
  • A recent Obama proposals to create a 200,000 man "military style" security force that has all the equipment, training and power of the military that is moving forward as we speak.
Till now we've been happy with a small FBI. Apparently not so, anymore. The FBI is growing by leaps and bounds in both capacity and authority. CIA is even running radio commercials to recruit operatives. I've never heard that before. So why are we increasing national security resources instead of leaving it in the hands of the locals.

One word: Terrorism

Thanks to fears of terrorism, we had more US troops at the Salt Lake City Olympics than were in Afghanistan at the time, all on the president's authority.
The Posse Comitatus tradition and law is so riddled with holes that the President can decide to deploy the armed forces and the National Guard on his own authority whenever he decides something is a national security issue. President Bush started it. It looks like President Obama intends to take it and run with it.

Unfortunately, there is a very big danger when we put people, whether they be soldiers or policemen or ordinary citizens in positions of power and authority over their fellows. I worked for almost a decade in residential treatment centers for children. During that time I saw people who were the soul of kindness and charity turn into something I did not recognize. Institutions where human beings are incarcerated against their wills and made to follow a regimen almost invariably "set up" the staff who must enforce the incarceration and maintain the regimens.

I saw staff members speak to kids and handle them in ways that would have done the Gestapo proud. I worked at a very good institution too. I did a lot of the training and constantly had to work with my staff to help them remember that they weren't prison guards. The environment set them up to believe that was exactly what they were supposed to do. We emphasized empowering the kids, giving them choices, helping them become self-governing. It was hard to keep that going because the need to corral difficult kids and control the violent ones kept pulling staff back into the "guard" roles.

Two famous research experiments, the Milgram experiment and the Stanford Prison Experiment delved into the psychology of the prisoner/guard relationships. Both were terminated early when the "guards" became overzealous enforcers and became abusive. There is abundant evidence that when you give a person authority and power to punish and a mission to control the behavior of another person, you undermine their principles. They may believe in the Golden Rule everywhere else, but within the context of their "guard" role, they enforce an "Iron Rule" that bears little resemblance to the principles they think they truly believe in.

The guards at Abu Graib were not the instigators of abusive treatment of the prisoners. They were never trained to resist the impulse to abuse. They were discouraged from seeing their charges as anything other than vicious animals. Consequently they treated them as such and got in trouble when they did.

Now, we're talking about training our young soldiers to look at Americans as potential enemies and to view their new role as guards and enforcers of law. My concern is not only for what that is going to do with to heads, but also what will be the effect of putting "military style" power into their hands while they are under this kind of pressure.

You don't want soldiers who are trained to unfettered warfare, to use those skills against the very people they have always before been charged to protect. It fundamentally changes who they are. It was disastrous when we used troops against kids at Kent State and against ordinary civilians during the civil right riots of the 60's. It will be disastrous again. I don't care who's the president.

When the guns are pointed at us on the inside instead of at our enemies on the outside, the gun-bearers change and we change too. It's a recipe for revolution. We went through that once in our history. So profound was our repugnance for what the British did against the colonists that we wrote into the constitution a provision that the government couldn't quarter soldiers in our homes.

In principle, I believe that using the military as a police force or even giving the police force the power of the military is just setting us up for trouble. It's giving law enforcement too much firepower. We don't think they can handle it and Americans won't stand for it. That's why the gun stores are selling ammunition as fast as they can stock it. That's why I can walk 3 blocks from my house out here in the country and buy an AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle, if I don't mind waiting till they get another shipment in.

I'm just afraid that this time the revolution that's brewing won't be a 1776 style revolution lead by wise and courageous men becaue of a love of liberty and high moral principles. It's going to be an angry mob-led French style revolution and a bloody awful thing to see.

Using military power against the American people is a mistake. If we turn the guns on ourselves, we are asking to have our liberties stripped away from us.

As that imminent philosopher Han Solo said once, ""Hey, point that thing someplace else."

Good advice!

Tom King

http://www.homelandsecurity.org/journal/Articles/brinkerhoffpossecomitatus.htm

http://www.homelandsecurity.org/journal/articles/Trebilcock.htm

Monday, March 02, 2009

The Obama Administration Grabs for Power Over Charities


The Devil is in the details, especially when it's a Democrat Budget Proposal.

President Obama's new budget plan has a sneaky little scheme buried in it to cut tax deductions for charitable giving by the so-called wealthiest 1%. The plan will help the government increase the taxes collected by the IRS from all those evil greedy rich people by discouraging them from giving to charity.

You know who they are - the people who make over $250,000 and do most of the hiring and creating of new business. The loss of funding to charities, Obama's staff says will be offset by increases in funding by the government.

Huh?

Okay, let me get this straight.

The government is going to provide a tax DISincentive for couples making more than $250K. Obama thinks that will raise some $179.8 billion in the next 10 years while at the same time reducing nonprofit charitable funding over the next decade by $179.8 billion.

Office of Management and Budget Director Peter Orszag says Mr. Obama takes care of the losses by giving charities government money to make up PART of the difference. So, then, the government is going to TAKE part of the money that now goes to charities and do what with it? We are asked to trust the government to do the right thing with this money.

What could be wrong with that?

Just this:

1. Instead of the money going directly to the charity which uses it all for expenses to run programs and the charities, the money will go through Washington, be given to a vast unwieldy bureaucracy, where, if the charity spends hundreds of man hours writing a complicated and restriction filled grant in competition with thousands of other nonprofits and maybe a few faith-based ministries, this bureaucracy might actually give some of all that money back to the charity. Of course the amount of this "give back" will be less than what the charities lost because the government has all those administrative costs to support the vast unwieldy bureaucracy that may or may not give them some of their money back.

2. The government WILL add restrictions to the funding and ban certain types of nonprofits from receiving government funds. THIS WILL ELIMINATE ENTIRELY, CERTAIN UNAPPROVED TYPES OF CHARITIES.

3. Rep. Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin says "Contained in the recovery act, there's $100 million to support nonprofits and charities as we get through this period of economic difficulty," he said. If that's an annual figure, then that's a ten year total of 1 billion dollar. So, they're taking 179.8 billion dollars from the charities and giving them back 1 billion dollars. According to my calculations that's a 99.388% administrative fee the government's charging there!!!!

Only in the Fantasy Land that is Washington could the Obama administration say that they would take almost 180 billion from the philanthropy community and see no drop in giving and then have the further cheek to suggest that their tiny one billion dollar "economic recovery fund for charities" will actually help charities.

Okay, the government plans to "take over" many of the functions of nonprofits and churches in America, so they won't be needed. Anybody think the government is going to be able to do what nonprofits do and deliver the same level of service. I've seen what government run programs cost. I worked at a residential treatment center for kids. We were paid $59 a day for caring for a severely disturbed kid. This included treatment, 24 hour staff, food, shelter, recreation and virtually everything the kid needed. They paid us 90% of our actual costs and we had to raise the remaining 10%.

Want to guess how much it cost the government to provide the same service"

$180 per day! That's 3 times what the nonprofit sector cost to do the same job.

Does anyone think that's a good idea???

Everyone who works for, with or is a member of a nonprofit, faith-based ministry, church, civic or community group, foundation or charitable organization or who is a person of means who donates to any charity should contact their congressman and both senators TODAY and tell them to pitch out this clause from Obama's budget.

It's bad for charity. It's a grab for more power over charities by the government. It's going to close thousands of small local charities who depend on the largesse of the philanthropy community to meet unique local needs.

Don't let this go by. It costs you some stamps or a phone call or, if you can use the computer, nothing but a bit of electricity. SEND AN E-MAIL FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!

Some Democrats and a whole bunch of Republicans have caught the administration doing a bit of political engineering here. BUT A LOT OF THEM HAVEN'T. Make sure your delegation is howling very loudly about this in the halls of Congress!

STOP THE GOVERNMENT FROM ROBBING FROM CHARITIES!!!!

Tom

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Iran's Gonna Make a Bomb!


I am shocked!

After all we did for them, the Iranians have gone and made up some fissile nuclear materials. That's atomic bomb making stuff for those of you who aren't technical.

I mean really....

1. We got rid of George Bush and his toadies and replaced all those nasty Republicans with a bunch of lovely Democrats.

2. We elected the first Black President who understands Muslims because he once attended Muslim schools and had a Muslim dad!

3. We ended the Iraq war of aggression the first day he was in office like he promised. Didn't we?

4. We're busily impoverishing ourselves in the name of global warming so that we too can be a third world country and no longer have any economic advantages over anyone.

5. We're going socialist!

6. We're going to talk to them without conditions. We've explained that we're going to be nice now and negotiate.

7. We're going to strip down our military and mostly have them point their guns at Americans instead of picking on all the innocent people of the world.

8. We're going to stop hogging up everyone's oil and using more than our share of the world's resources.

9. We've spoken sharply to Israel and told them they shouldn't be picking on Hamas like that AND we're giving 9 tenths of a billion dollars to Hamas to refurbish the Gaza Strip.

10. Besides, we told them how nice we all are now that the evil Republicans have been defeated.

So why are the Iranians working on a bomb? I thought if we did all that stuff they were going to suddenly love us and become all peaceful and sweet.

Odd..........

I'm just sayin'

Tom