Thursday, June 23, 2016

Ben Carson Questions Need for 2nd Amendment and Inadvertently Slams Trump's Faith

Is it possible to post on the Trump reverse Midas touch and leave Ben Carson out for long? It's like Carson has taken on the Trump persona of saying whatever comes into his mind whether his statements are consistent or not.

First on policy--the 2nd Amendment now up for grabs:

Carson: "And that’s why we need to get back to a point of having civil discussions. Let’s put on the table what is the reason for the 2nd Amendment and is there a reason that we need to change those things right now?" (1:36-1:50) (emphasis added)

Then on character, Carson gives a true, but inadvertently anti-Trump comment on how to tell about someone’s faith (in the context of Trump criticizing Hillary's faith):

Carson: "Well, clearly a person’s faith, their religion, their relationship with God, is something that should be private although it should be manifested publicly. You know the Bible says in Matthew 7:20 by their fruit you will know them. And the point that was being made there is it doesn’t matter what protestations or proclamations people make. Look at the way they live. Look at the way they treat other people and the way that they do things. That will tell you all you need to know." (2:50- 3:22) (emphasis added)

Then there are the walk backs of the above statement. Why Trump's bad behavior is okay (and, undoubtedly shouldn't be used in judging Trump's faith). First, on Trump criticizing Carson’s faith:

Carson: "Well, I knew why he was doing that. You know, I was challenging him for the lead, and (laughs) he didn't know what to do. He was getting kind of desperate. That's okay. I mean that’s politics. People say stuff." (3:45-4:09)

Second, on questions about Judge Curiel’s ethnicity and the tone of Trump's campaign:

Carson: "Well, [Trump]’s not a politician. There’s no question about that. He’s not going to be smooth. He’s not going to lay the groundwork before he says something like a politician does. I think the average American kind of understands where he’s coming from." (3:40-4:45)

So does how you treat other people show your faith or doesn't it? Maybe only if it regards people other than the candidate Ben Carson has endorsed.

H/T theRightScoop

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Trump Reverse Midas Effect Still Going Strong

Update: Franklin Graham was worse than I thought. Here's a transcript including what he said. In his prayer: "And, Father, we pray this election that you will give a man to be the president of this country who will honor life, who will respect our Constitution, who will respect the authority of the office." Except for a Hillary gender change, pretty clear she's not in Graham's thinking as a flawed person who should be given a break in consideration for president.
The ability of normally lucid public figures supporting Trump to make themselves look silly continues.

Gov. Chris Christie's spokesman denies that Christie acts like a "manservant" to Trump. And former U.S. Senator Scott Brown says he wouldn't fetch McDonald's orders for Trump.

Against all the evidence, former Gov. Sarah Palin predicted House Speaker Paul Ryan would be "Cantored" (dumping an incumbant candidate in the primary). In May Ryan led his opponent by something like 78 to 14.

Then there are the evangelicals.

Jerry Falwell Jr. excitedly tweeted out a picture of him and his wife smiling with Trump in front of a Playboy magazine cover. Falwell would undoubtedly discipline his students or faculty if they had a framed picture of a Playboy cover on their wall. But, seems he was too excited to be in a photo with Trump to notice his surroundings.

Falwell's tweet in defense was even more embarrassing.
Honored for same hypocrites who accused Jesus of being a friend of publicans and sinners to be targeting me over a decades old mag cover! TY
Falwell seems to believe that a pornographic magazine and its philosophy of making women mere sex objects is sanitized by time. Decades old means it's okay.

No problem with being a friend of sinners (since we are all sinners), but having your picture taken in front of an egotistical display of the guy you are with which includes glorifying what you are against is not what Jesus did. Passages that speak of Jesus dining with publicans and sinners make clear He was there to help them repent.* Falwell says nothing about helping Trump repent. In fact, Falwell says he's "honored" to introduce Trump to others.

Falwell would have been better served to just admit he didn't notice the cover and say that he wishes the picture had been taken in front of another wall as he is not a fan of Playboy and opposes the Playboy philosophy. But, once in the Trump Tar Pits it's hard to get out gracefully or with even a semblance of good sense.

Then there is Franklin Graham.
Franklin Graham, the son of evangelist the Rev. Billy Graham, addressed Trump's personal flaws that bother some evangelicals — including his multiple marriages, past support for abortion rights and foul language.
Graham pointed out that in lots of stories in the Bible, people messed up. After all, Graham told the crowd of devout Christians, the prophet Moses led his people out of slavery in Egypt but disobeyed God; King David committed adultery and murder; and the apostle Peter, who, as one of Jesus' closest followers, really should have had his back, denied three times that he'd ever known Jesus.
"There is none of us that are perfect," Graham said. "There's no perfect person — there's only one, and that's the Lord Jesus Christ, but he's not running for president of the United States."
Well, yes, nobody is perfect. One could just as well say that about Hillary Clinton or, for a stretch, the Orlando shooter. How does that help? It's either meaningless or Graham is insinuating that Trump has repented as David and Peter clearly did and Moses probably did. (No evidence on Abraham except he was shamefaced before Abimelech and made not very good excuses in view of the serious consequences of his lie had God not intervened. Genesis 20:9-13)

In any case, what Franklin Graham said does nothing to advance his major goal of helping people turn to God. It doesn't show that people can change through repentance or be redeemed by God's grace. It just says that people are flawed. We all knew that and are not an inch ahead in restating it. A truism without a point is a waste of breath. Much better would have been the simple comment: "I preach the Gospel. I leave judging people to God."
*Luke 15:1-7 (and Matthew 9:9-13):
Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”
Then Jesus told them this parable: “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.
Luke 5:27-32 (and Mark 2:15-17)
After this, Jesus went out and saw a tax collector by the name of Levi sitting at his tax booth. “Follow me,” Jesus said to him, and Levi got up, left everything and followed him.
Then Levi held a great banquet for Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”
Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
Luke 19:5-10:
When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him,“Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.”So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.
All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”
But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”
Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”

If You Like Fast Food Here's the 2016 List of the Best Liked Places

Fox News reports:
Chick-fil-A has bested the country’s top burger and burrito chains as the highest ranking fast food restaurant based on consumer satisfaction, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) Restaurant Report 2016 released Tuesday.
. . .
The surveys were based on responses from almost 5,000 diners in March.
America’s favorite fast food restaurants, 2016
1. Chick-fil-A, 87
2. Papa John's, 82
3. All Others, 81
4. Little Caesars Pizza, 81
5. Panera Bread, 81
6. Arby's, 80
7. Dunkin' Donuts, 80
8. Subway, 80
9. Chipotle Mexican Grill, 78
10. Domino's, 78
11. KFC, 78
12. Pizza Hut, 77
13. Burger King, 76
14. Wendy's, 76
15. Starbucks, 75
16. Taco Bell, 75
17. Jack in the Box, 74
18. McDonald's, 69
My parents like KFC and Taco Bell, so we buy take home from those two reasonably often. Brother-in-law and some nieces are addicted to Starbucks.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

How Trump's Words Get Twisted

Another day, another billionaire request for my money.

Especially fun is "Unfortunately, time after time the media twists my words and tries to use them against me." No one needs to twist Trump's words to use them against him. His words another day or facts do that just fine by themselves.

On the folly of intervening in the Middle East:
“I mean, look at Libya,” Trump said on CNN’s State of the Union last year. “Look at Iraq. Iraq used to be no terrorists. He [Saddam Hussein] would kill the terrorists immediately, which is like, now it’s the Harvard of terrorism. If you look at Iraq from years ago, I’m not saying he was a nice guy — he was a horrible guy — but it was a lot better than it is right now. Right now, Iraq is a training ground for terrorists. Right now, Libya, nobody even knows Libya, frankly there is no Iraq and there is no Libya. It’s all broken up. They have no control. Nobody knows what’s going on.”
When asked if the world would be better with Qaddafi in power, Trump said, “100%.”
On the necessity of intervening in Libya and knocking out Qaddafi:
The comments are a sharp contrast for Trump from 2011, when, on his video blog, he pushed hard for the United States to intervene in Libya.
. . .
“But we have go in to save these lives; these people are being slaughtered like animals,” he said. “It’s horrible what’s going on; it has to be stopped. We should do on a humanitarian basis, immediately go into Libya, knock this guy out very quickly, very surgically, very effectively, and save the lives.”
On not wanting Japan to get nuclear weapons:
At a rally in Sacramento, Trump said that Clinton "made a speech, she's making another one tomorrow, and they sent me a copy of the speech. And it was such lies about my foreign policy, that they said I want Japan to get nuclear weapons. Give me a break."
But less than two months earlier he was for Japan getting nuclear weapons:
But in an April interview with Chris Wallace on Fox News, Trump said, "It's not like, gee whiz, nobody has them. So, North Korea has nukes. Japan has a problem with that. I mean, they have a big problem with that. Maybe they would in fact be better off if they defend themselves from North Korea."
Wallace asked, "With nukes?"
"Including with nukes, yes, including with nukes," Trump responded.
 Then there's Muslim help against terrorism. MAX Redline notes:
Trump's amusing - the other day he said that Muslims never report anything to the cops. The FBI and other law enforcement folks said, "Actually, we get a lot of tips from them." Oops, again.

Trying to Figure Out Why Sarah Palin Has Gone Nuts

Here's a facebook post today:


Sarah Palin thinks John Boehner superior to Paul Ryan? In what universe?

Palin's rambling speeches lately have been bizarre coming from someone who was one of the preeminent political speakers. And there's the strange talk when endorsing Trump about media heads spinning and her mistreatment "every day" from 2008 (first 2 minutes of the speech). I put that down to being pushed off kilter by the media treatment of her and her family which was unprecedented in its hatred and ugliness. OK, I can understand her emotional wound even though one has to give that kind of mistreatment to God to take care of. You can't take your own revenge or even carry thoughts of it without spiritually crumbling.

But Palin's unhinged hatred of Paul Ryan is just crazy. She vowed to "Cantor" him by backing an unknown candidate who has civility issues. Worse yet, Ryan's opponent is polling about 15%. Supporting Paul Nehlen okay, but boasting about taking Ryan out is political nonsense.

Then there's the facebook post above. Palin scourges Ryan for two political falsehoods--not particularly big ones either.

Now, Donald Trump has said falsehood after falsehood* (including that Ben Carson has a character like a child molester and Ted Cruz's father had a part in JFK's assassination, misrepresenting flipflops like women who get abortions should be punished and there should be nuclear proliferation especially for South Korea and Japan). Not a mention from Palin about any of these "lies". Not even a complaint about Trump reveling in Mike Tyson's endorsement and calling convicted rapist Tyson a "tough guy". Mike Tyson who laughed in a radio interview about sexual violence against Sarah Palin in 2011.

So, the woman outraged by two Paul Ryan "lies" is fine with Donald Trump's myriad of lies and praise of the man who would like to see Palin sexually assaulted. It's beyond me. Way into La-La Land.
*yoeman's labor with links(!) for many of the 366 lies listed

Friday, June 17, 2016

Billionaire Donald J. Trump Wants My Money

From an email I received from Donald Trump today:

Besides the fact that I disagree with most of Trump's fundamental principles, why would someone with way south of 1/20000th of his boasted net worth be giving him money*? Not only do I have better uses for it, I know lots of people and causes that could really use my small sums of money and don't have a $10 billion nest egg.

I've heard $1 billion as a ballpark figure for what a Trump presidential campaign needs. That's only 10% of his net worth. One assumes that if he had to make the choice he would pay 10% of his net worth to stay out of prison for 4 years. I certainly would. So why not spend 10% to be president and "Make America Great Again!"?

And Trump is putting up 5-1/2 years (7%) of his life with the campaign and first term. Assuming he would be willing to go for two terms that would be 12% of his life. But, not 10% of his money? Kind of strange.
*Sarah Palin has also asked me for money to fund Trump as have various telephone robocallers.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Trump Is Teleprompter and Double Negative-Challenged

Donald Trump does not do well with teleprompters. He looks very ill at ease and isn't able to pay attention to the meaning of what he is saying. Here's what he said yesterday:
"We have an incompetent administration, and if I'm elected president, that will not change, I will tell you, that will not change over the next four years."
He even emphasized his mistake with "I will tell you". Apparently he missed an important "not" in the text. As in: "We have an incompetent administration, and if I'm not elected president, that will not change . . . ." Whoever writes his speeches needs to leave complex syntax like "not elected . . . not change" out of Trump's speeches. Trump couldn't figure out the double negative.

You can see the mistake in context at about the 4:28 mark below:

This reminds of President Obama thanking himself. Though Obama is exceptionally good at teleprompter speeches and does appear to know what he is reading except for a few glitches like thanking himself. Obama actually looks at ease doing the tennis match swing back and forth and looks like he is talking to the audience. Trump looks like he's trying to find his place on the speech scroll.

Monday, June 06, 2016

Remembering D-Day Heroes - 72 Years Later

Omaha Beach, Company E, 16th Infantry, 1st Infantry Division, June 6, 1944

Omaha Beach, June 6, 1944

medics tend to wounded, Utah Beach, June 6, 1944

Utah Beach, June 9, 1944

More pictures here and here.