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Archive for the ‘Moral Clarity’ Category

Britain’s PM Shows Moxie During China Visit

Posted by Steve Markowitz on November 10, 2010

Yesterday we posted the disturbing story of President Obama side-stepping a student’s question about Obama’s opinion of Jihad during his just completed visit to India (Obama’s Bizarre Statements in Made in India).  Today we contrast Obama’s style with that of British Prime Minister David Cameron.

Cameron is just completing a two-day state visit to China during which the Chinese government asked the PM to remove a poppy from his lapel before entering the Great Hall of the People.  To the British, the poppy is a symbol to be worn every November since World War-I to commemorate their war dead.  The Chinese, on the other hand, view the poppy as a sign of imperialism from the days when Europeans were involved with the drug trade in their country.  The British PM politely said “no” to the Chinese request showing some much needed backbone from the West.

In addition to Cameron’s resolve on the poppy issue, he spoke to Chinese students in a forum similar to what Obama used the same week in India.  However, unlike Obama, Cameron spoke with moral clarity when according to Bloomberg he promoted multiparty democracy, a free press and independent judiciary.

As the British would say: here, here!  President Obama would do well to take lessons in foreign relations from the British PM.  Truth and moral clarity will trump political correctness in the long run.

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Conservatives May Win Elections, But not the War

Posted by Steve Markowitz on October 26, 2010

Many Conservatives are already in a lather about the prospects of a Right turn in our government after the upcoming elections.  This excitement is premature, even if the Tsunami unfolds as desired.

Let us remember that so-called “Conservatives” held significant power beginning in the 1994 Congressional elections and had total power for six years during the Bush-II Administration.  Instead of focusing on the real issues facing the Country and within the framework of their Constitutional powers, this group went after a President for lying about his sex life, interjected itself into a state’s rights issue, i.e. the Terri Schiavo matter, spent like drunken sailors, bailed out all sorts of folks for bad behavior, and led the Country to the physiological state where it was willing to vote for our current President, a man who had no experience and a history of disliking what is America.

This Blog is concerned that the new Conservative wave will lose its way after the elections, as politicians seek to maintain new-found power and have their witch hunt on the Progressives who will be kicked out of Washington.  There are troubling signs.  For example, the Conservatives running for office preach fiscal conservatism and less governmental spending.  While a need for the Country, few of these politicians have shared with the People the pain that must come with or without fiscal austerity.

In addition, momentum is against a Conservative victory having a meaningful impact on reinvigorating America.  The slippery slop that we have traveled down in recent decades has created unintended consequences, not the least of which is Americans’ pervasive entitlement mentally.  The consequences of these structural changes in America are the subject of an article posted yesterday by David Deming in the American Thinker.  Deming is an associate professor of Arts and Sciences at the University of Oklahoma.  His profound thesis is linked in its entirety below.  But before, here are some points made by Deming.

  • The midterm elections will solve nothing.  The plain fact is that conservatives have lost the battle for America.  The country that many of us were born in has ceased to exist.  And we have no one to blame but ourselves.  Nothing can or will change until we come to terms with the grim reality of moral degeneration.
  • Every day, the news brings a startling new incident of moral corruption.  A few days ago it was reported that an eighteen-year-old geology student at Arizona State University had starred in an online pornographic film in which she performed “explicit and degrading” sex acts for a one-time payment of $2,000.  The young woman explained that she needed the money to supplement her scholarship, and then inexplicably proclaimed, “I have morals!
  • We are a nation of gluttons.  About one-third of adults in the U.S. are obese.  …..  After ruining our health through gluttony, we then go to our physicians and demand a quick fix in the form of a pill.  Pharmaceutical companies are glad to oblige.  And the government must pay, because free health care is now a “right.”
  • There is no better index for America’s moral degradation than television programming.  ….  The networks are locked in a downward spiral to see who can provide the most outrageous and offensive programming.  It’s not their fault.  They’re just giving the American people what they want.
  • Children are not as smart as their parents.  The average child today spends thirteen hours watching television for every hour he spends reading.
  • Our popular music is a painful cacophony of obnoxious dissonance.  The eighteenth and nineteenth centuries had Mozart, Beethoven, and Tchaikovsky.  We have Snoop Dogg and Lady Gaga.
  • People incessantly demand entitlements and handouts.  Every government intervention in the free-market system creates a fresh problem that demands another ruinous intervention with unintended consequences.
  • In this brave new world, everyone has the right to not be offended, and no one can be held accountable for anything.  The fundamental unit of human civilization, the family, has been caustically eroded by feminism.

Deming concludes with: “The nation that began with freedom of religion has progressed to freedom from religion, freedom from moral constraint, and freedom from responsibility.”  Said, but true!  We have gone a long way baby.

America Is Gone, By David Deming; American Thinker October 24, 2010

 

Posted in Conservatism, Moral Clarity, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Pastor DeForest Soaries’ Straight-talk

Posted by Steve Markowitz on October 4, 2010

Earlier this week this Blog commended a member of the Jewish clergy, Rabbi Shlomo Lewis, for his straight-talk on terrorism.  The Rabbi’s message was even more courageous given that his tough message on terror was pointed to a community that typically has a Liberal bias.

Today, this Blog commends an African-American Baptist minister, Reverend DeForest Blake Soaries, Jr., for straight-talk of his own.  Pastor Soaries is the minster at First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens in Somerset, New Jersey.  His message, was also pointed to a community that typically has a Liberal bent and was included in an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, link provide below.

Dr. Soaries starts to take on this difficult subject by starting with a discussion about fellow pastor, Bishop Eddie Long, of a megachurch in Atlanta, Georgia, who was recently involved in sexual abuse allegations.  But this sordid story was not the subject of Soaries’ comments.  Instead he attacked what he has called the “Prosperity Gospel” in black churches.  To quote Dr. Soaries:

It would be premature to judge the truth of these allegations, but it is not too soon to weigh in on his opulent lifestyle.”

If God were a cosmic Santa Claus, then the entire economic crisis could be brought to a halt by making our lists of needs and sending them to Him.  Reasonable people know that faith in God must be accompanied by responsible actions to achieve lasting prosperity.  Education, hard work and discipline are key components to any authentic prosperity plan.”

The problem of excessive greed is prevalent throughout our society and has been elevated to a higher ground by us spoiled Baby-Boomers.  Its prevalence was pronounced and glorified in the 1987 movie, Wall Street, by Gordon Gekko with his video clip provided below.  Our society would do well to put more stock in preachers like pastor Soaries.

Black Churches and the Prosperity Gospel, by DEFOREST B. SOARIES JR

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Moral Clarity and Radical Islam

Posted by Steve Markowitz on October 3, 2010

Since the end of World War II it has been fashionable in Leftist circles to glorify revolutionaries.  During the sixties the Left promoted characters like Mao, Castro and Che Guevara.  The fact that millions perished from the actions of these revolutionaries didn’t hinder their reverence by the Left.

With the fall of Communism, Red revolutionaries went out of fashion and were relegated to the history books.  But the Left did not lose its infatuation with revolutionaries. Today, revolution is fermented by Radical Islam and once again the Left has elevated evil to higher moral ground.  Where once the United Nations welcomed Cuba’s Fidel Castro as he blasted the United States, now it welcomes Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.  But Ahmadinejad has added to rants against the United States, adding anti-Semitism to his repertoire.

While Communist revolutionaries were responsible for the deaths of tens of millions, today’s Islamic revolutionaries are in some ways even brutal.  These contemporary revolutionaries have more in common with Nazis than Communists.  Like Nazis, Islamic revolutionaries see it their duty to a higher power to rid the world of those they vilify.  For the Nazis this included Jews, Communists, gypsies, homosexuals and others.  With Islamists, it starts with Jews and but ultimately includes the entire western culture.

This Blog does not generally post writings from clerics of religion.  An exception is made today because of the moral clarity expressed so elegantly in a sermon by Rabbi Shlomo Lewis of Atlanta on the First Day of Rosh Hashanah 2010, the Jewish New Year.  Another first for this Blog is that the Rabbi is a self-proclaimed “card carrying member of the ACLU”, an organization who has in the past taken positions that are in opposite of moral clarity.  Irrespective of the flaw in the Rabbi’s associations, his words are profound.  While the entire sermon is posted below, given its length, highlights are first listed.

Moral Clarity from Rabbi Shlomo Lewis

  • We are at war with an enemy as savage, as voracious, as heartless as the Nazis but one wouldn’t know it from our behavior.  During WWII we didn’t refer to storm troopers as freedom fighters.  We didn’t call the Gestapo, militants.  We didn’t see the attacks on our Merchant Marine as acts by rogue sailors.  We did not justify the Nazis rise to power as our fault.  We did not grovel before the Nazis, thumping our hearts and confessing to abusing and mistreating and humiliating the German people.
  • We did not apologize for Dresden, nor for The Battle of the Bulge, nor for El Alamein, nor for D-Day.
  • Not all Germans were Nazis – most were decent, most were revolted by the Third Reich, most were good citizens hoisting a beer, earning a living and tucking in their children at night.  But, too many looked away, too many cried out in lame defense – I didn’t know.”
  • In WWII we won because we got it.  We understood who the enemy was and we knew that the end had to be unconditional and absolute.  We did not stumble around worrying about offending the Nazis.
  • Let me mince no words in saying that from Fort Hood to Bali, from Times Square to London, from Madrid to Mumbai, from 9/11 to Gaza, the murderers, the barbarians are radical Islamists.
  • Today the enemy is radical Islam, but it must be said sadly and reluctantly that there are unwitting, co-conspirators who strengthen the hands of the evil doers.  Let me state that the overwhelming number of Muslims are good Muslims, fine human beings ……  The good Muslims must sponsor rallies in Times Square, in Trafalgar Square, in the UN Plaza, on the Champs Elysee, in Mecca condemning terrorism, denouncing unequivocally the slaughter of the innocent.  Thus far, they have not.
  • Immediately after 9/11 how many mosques were destroyed in America? None.  After 9/11, how many Muslims were killed in America?  None.  After 9/11, how many anti-Muslim rallies were held in America?  None.  And yet, we apologize.  We grovel.  We beg forgiveness.
  • Israel is the laboratory – the test market.  Every death, every explosion, every grisly encounter is not a random, bloody orgy.  It is a calculated, strategic probe into the heart, guts and soul of the West.
  • There is a message sent and consequences when our president visits Turkey and Egypt and Saudi Arabia, and not Israel.
  • There is a message sent and consequences when free speech on campus is only for those championing Palestinian rights.
  • There is a message sent and consequences when the UN blasts Israel relentlessly, effectively ignoring Iran, Sudan, Venezuela, North Korea, China and other noxious states.
  • Let’s try an analogy.  If someone contracted a life-threatening infection and we not only scolded them for using antibiotics but insisted that the bacteria had a right to infect their body and that perhaps, if we gave the invading infection an arm and a few toes, the bacteria would be satisfied and stop spreading.  Anyone buy that medical advice?  Well, folks, that’s our approach to the radical Islamist bacteria.  It is amoral, has no conscience and will spread unless it is eradicated. – There is no negotiating. Appeasement is death.
  • I was no great fan of George Bush – didn’t vote for him.  (By the way, I’m still a registered Democrat.)  I disagreed with many of his policies but one thing he had right.  His moral clarity was flawless when it came to the War on Terror, the War on Radical Islamist Terror.  There was no middle ground – either you were friend or foe.  There was no place in Bush’s world for a Switzerland.
  • A few weeks ago on the cover of Time magazine was a horrific picture with a horrific story.  The photo was of an eighteen year old Afghani woman, Bibi Aisha, who fled her abusive husband and his abusive family.  Days later the Taliban found her and dragged her to a mountain clearing where she was found guilty of violating Sharia Law.  Her punishment was immediate.  She was pinned to the ground by four men while her husband sliced off her ears, and then he cut off her nose.  That is the enemy.
  • Our parents and grandparents saw the swastika and recoiled, understood the threat and destroyed the Nazis.  We see the banner of Radical Islam and can do no less.

Sermon delivered by Rabbi Shlomo Lewis of Atlanta

I thought long and I thought hard on whether to deliver the sermon I am about to share.   Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Moral Clarity, Radical Islam | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »