October 17, 2008

Days of Fear and Loathing…

Category: News — Ira @ 6:51 pm


“Where will it end? How low do you have to
stoop in this country to be President?”

—Hunter S. Thompson

It’s down now to the last few weeks. The air froths with tension. The crescendo of blather, the simpering insipid press, blah, blah, blah, on and on it goes. The endless cycle of this daily poll and that daily poll, an incessant cyclone of noise and thunder.

I know how a lot of you are feeling. As the Presidential election looms, now just days away. So much at stake, and so many seem to sleep.

You know who you are. The ones with the sweaty palms, the palpitating heartbeats, shortness of breath, cold night sweats. The ones who hyperventilate at the thought their candidate might not win. That he probably won’t. The ones who can’t imagine the country in the hands of the enemies of all they hold dear.

I know who you are, too. I can sympathize. I used to be one of you. I was right in there with you during the last two Presidential campaigns. AlGore drove me bonkers. I still can’t stand to see him or listen to his deranged rantings about global warming. The pompous gasbag prophet. The haughty John Kerry and his equally haughty wife Teresa stirred their own apocalyptic visions in my head.

All the strain and stress of worrying and fretting about politics. It’s enough to unhinge sound minds and turn the strongest heart to quivering jelly.

And I wonder why we do it. Why we allow ourselves to become so wrapped up, so obsessed with the outcome of a political process.

Deep down, do we consider it our salvation? Not of our souls, but of our “heaven on earth?” If we do, we should know better. Politics is a vile and dishonorable profession; it poisons all it touches. Including you, if you drink too deeply of its tainted dregs.

All the characters running for office are deeply flawed. Corrupted by their years in office or by the process itself. They will promise anything they think we want to hear, but after they are elected, we are forgotten. As are their promises.

So I’m not doing it. Not this time. The strain and stress and hyperventilation, I mean. And it’s not about voting or not voting, or who you’re voting for. Do what you want. Vote pragmatically or vote your conscience. I’ll do the same. I won’t think less of you. You may think of me however you wish.

It’s about keeping perspective. And sanity.

I don’t know who will win. You don’t either. A few weeks ago it seemed like McCain. Lately, Obama has momentum, if the sycophant press can be believed. Somehow, I remain highly skeptical of the breathless media reports that it’s all over. Methinks they protest too much; they are “whistling past the graveyard,” hoping that because they say so will make it so. We’re still two-plus weeks out. We won’t know who won until November 4th comes and goes.

I’m going out on a limb here. I still think it will be McCain and Palin. The polls will tighten in the last week, when even the blatantly biased pollsters will want to get it right. Because of the Bradley effect, if Obama doesn’t go into election day with a substantial (5% to 7%) lead, he will lose.

If that happens, there will be riots in the cities. Especially if it’s too close to call and goes to the courts again like it did in 2000. If that happens, heaven help us all.

But I don’t know. It’s just my opinion. I’m not a prophet.

I’m irritated at the slobbering, slithering press and its blatant backing of Obama. They make no bones about it. Maybe they’ll get their wish. If so, he’ll bite the hands that fed him soon enough.

I’m irritated at a lot of other things too.

At McCain and his incoherent ramblings. Probably the most incompetent campaigner in the history of Presidential politics. The man said a few weeks ago that he’d consult AlGore on global warming. At his big government solutions to all things that ail the country. And probably most of all, for his co-sponsorship of the despicable McCain-Feingold Act and the suppression of free political speech. It’s just abominable. For that vile betrayal alone, the man does not deserve to be President. Period.

I’m irritated at Obama too, mostly for being a vacuous empty suit with a messianic complex, who spouts vacant socialistic platitudes about “change.” And that anyone who opposes him is instantly pegged as racist by the unhinged left. He can say nothing better than anyone I’ve ever heard. Not that I listen to him much. I’m sure the man is not the demon he’s portrayed to be. Yes, he’s a leftist, and yes, he’s a liberal, but if elected, his policies will not automatically become law. Any country that survived eight years of the degenerate Clinton can take on about anything. I do believe an Obama administration would be even more corrupt than Clinton’s was.

I still naturally react viscerally against all things liberal, the socialism, the base class envy at the core of all the Democrats believe and do. I have few illusions. Obama and Pelosi and Reid will drive our country straight over the cliff. Into oblivion. About five miles per hour faster than McCain would.

The Republicans had all the opportunities in the world to change things. Back when they owned the Presidency and both houses of Congress. That was their chance. Instead of seizing it, they dramatically expanded government, and spent money like drunken bums. Which they are.

The truth is that Bush has decimated the Constitution far worse than Clinton could ever have dreamed of doing. And far worse than either AlGore or Kerry would have done, had they been President. I’ve heard it said years ago that a Republican President will do more damage to the country than a Democrat, simply because those who should be on guard, the conservative base, always have their guards down and don’t protest as they should. I believe this is true.

With the recent bailout, federal powers have increased dramatically as the government seized control of practically every aspect of banking and finance. What government takes with its heavy hand, it does not easily relinquish. The market showed its confi-dence in the takeover by blasting up over 900 points on Monday, only to drop more than 700 points two days later. Dropped again today.

We are still in for a long dry slog through the desert. The piper will be paid.

More ominously, since Oct. 1, for the first time, we now have a brigade of troops stationed in our own country to respond to natural disasters and DOMESTIC CIVIL UNREST. In direct violation of Posse Comitatus [military personnel may not be directly involved in law enforcement]. The separation has been in effect since 1878. But Bush broke down the wall, and now they’re here. Heaven only knows what dark storms they portend. Before it’s over, the blood of American citizens will be flowing in the streets.

That’s what I fear and loathe. Not so much who’s running for President, or who will be President, but what our government has become. Where we are heading, regardless of who wins this election.

It’s OK to loathe. It’s not worth the effort and energy required to hate. And fear, well, we have the choice on whether or not it paralyzes us. A healthy fear is good, a paralyzing fear is not.

I believe that an old house with a rotting foundation that is falling down should be assisted in its fall, not shored up. Obama will take the house down faster than McCain. So if the country votes him in, it will get what it deserves. More severe pain, more quickly. But also a real chance for those who love freedom to clean up the mess. A mess that will have to be cleaned up sooner or later. Might as well be sooner.

Maybe in my lifetime. Maybe not. Whatever happens, it won’t affect who I am and what I believe.

Whoever wins, my tirades will be unleashed against them from time to time. As long as I’m allowed to keep this site. I fully expect the day to come, and it’s not that far off, when internet free speech will be a thing of the past. The Demoncrats are slobbering at the bit for the Fairness Doctrine and a lot more. All sites will be licensed and curtailed. And ultimately silenced.

Until then, I’ll keep plugging on.


Congratulations to the Phillies for crushing the Dodgers in five games. Unfortunately, Tampa collapsed last night after leading the arrogant Red Sox, 7-0. Lost 8-7. With a swing like that, it will be a miracle if the Rays still pull it out in the next two games. But hope springs eternal, and all that.

If the Red Sox do make it, I will be in the extremely awkward position of cheering for the Phillies. And I mean awkward. It’s like the sun rising in the west. Maybe I’d just sit it out. Be neutral. As if that would be possible.

I stopped at Amelia’s Discount Groceries the other night on the way home from the gym. To pick up a few items for supper. As usual, I loaded up with more stuff than I had planned. The middle-aged Plain Mennonite cashier rang up my purchases.

“Fifteen twenty-eight,” she said pleasantly. I opened my wallet and extracted the cash.

To my horror, I had exactly fourteen bucks. I shuffled uncomfortably.

“I guess I’ll have to remove an item,” I stammered, pointing to a box of ice cream I didn’t need anyway, and hadn’t planned to buy. “I’ve got exactly fourteen dollars.”

“Oh, that’s quite alright,” the Plain Mennonite lady said soothingly. “It’s certainly not the first time something like this happened.” She re-rang the total. Thirteen seventy-eight.

I handed her all my money, took my change, and thanked her. “Thought I was better organized. I usually carry more cash.” I mumbled. She smiled kindly. She’d heard all the excuses before.

Embarrassing. Can’t remember the last time something like that happened to me. Probably when I was a teenager.

October 10, 2008

Brooding Days….

Category: News — Ira @ 7:15 pm


Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land,
strangers devour it in your presence, and it is desolate……

—Isaiah 1:7

It’s been a brooding week. Things going on. Unexpected shock and stress from latent shadows. Old demons, asleep now for some time, stirring again in the hidden crevices of the heart.

And rage, like a sleeping dog disturbed, awakes again.

And the dreams. Sporadic. Vivid. Exhausting. Violent. Waking up drenched in torrents of cold sweat.

All of it uprooted by events beyond one’s control. And all the old memories wash back like a flood. What was almost laid to rest rises again, attacking with its viperous sting. Rips again into the soft fabric of the heart where the healing process had begun.

And one looks back over these last eighteen months. Each one an eternity. Yet moving along as all time does, at light speed. A year. Going on two. At all that transpired. From the first day, until the present hour.

And one reflects. On the two lives, supposedly joined forever, brutally sundered. On all the things that could have been done, but weren’t. The incessant haunting regrets, how they diminish only with time, but never entirely disappear.

On all the words that were spoken. In anger. Sorrow. Rage. Pain. Grief. Despair. And all the words left unsaid.

On the loneliness of one, living in a home where two had lived before.

It’s strange. I knew this day would come. Just not when. Or that it would be so soon. It’s not unwelcome. Just jolting. There is no real way to prepare.

All is truly vanity, as the Preacher wrote thousands of years ago. It was true then. It still is.

Everything. Wealth. Possessions. Knowledge. Passion. Power. Pride. Even love.

Everything, that is, outside Christ. The rebirth that’s possible only in Him. And the new life that follows.

A man can plan his path and pursue it. Make choices. Devastate his own empire, burn his bridges behind him and move to a far land. And yet, at some point, after he finds himself alone, after the corn husks meant for the hogs turn to dust in his hands, he may realize what a fool he was. Turn his hungry eyes again to the rich and fertile land he left behind. Long to return. Reseed the desolate fields. Pour new foundations. Rebuild the burnt and vaporized ruins of all he had so senselessly destroyed in his narcissistic passion and colossal pride.

If it’s even possible. Sometimes it is. And sometimes it’s not.

Because some inhabitants of that desolate land may have moved on. Picked up the shattered pieces. Rebuilt their lives. Made the flowers bloom again, as best they could. Their songs of joy, absent for so long, now returning hesitantly, slowly, now echoing tentatively from their wounded hearts.

They may not welcome him back. Ever.

Unless there is no other choice. Because of Christ. And His non-negotiable commands. If they even apply.

And that’s about all I choose to say for now.


I pride myself on the matter. On never catching a serious cold. Never. Not beyond a few sniffles and coughs, sometimes for as long as a few days. While others are creaking around half dead. I credit my daily dozes of Superfood and a few other vitamins. Strict regimen. I stick with it.

That pride was shattered last Saturday morning. I woke up feeling groggy, my head ready to explode. A severe head cold had set in. All I need, I thought, as I headed off to work. I was disappointed in my Superfood, for not fending it off as usual.

It was awful. I could hardly breathe. Runny nose. Sneezing. The whole thing. But the not being able to breathe part drove me batty.

On the way home, I stopped at a drugstore for some medicine. A friend had recom-mended Aleve-D Sinus and Cold caplets as the best stuff out there. At least the best available without a prescription.

I asked the clerk for it. She reached behind the counter and got a packet. I stared. What was an over the counter drug doing behind the counter? I soon found out.

The clerk unlimbered a great black ledger book and asked me for my driver’s license. My friend had warned me. They don’t sell the stuff over the counter anymore because it’s used to make meth, or some such thing.

“This is insane,” I muttered as I dutifully handed over my license. She copied all the info into the great black ledger.

“It is a little silly,” she agreed, scribbling away, probably furtively planning to report my complaint after I left. She then asked me to sign my name on the appropriate blank. I did so, grumbling. She cheerfully gave me an instant dollar-off coupon, which I appreciated.

The stuff works. Opens my sinuses just like that. I can breathe. And that’s all import-ant. The cold is gone now, having worked its havoc. I have enough Aleve left for the next one. But I’m still quite irate that the government knows I bought it. It’s none of their business.

If I purchased several more packs of the stuff in the next month, my house would probably get raided without warning by the DEA goons, in their black masks, armor and machine guns. It’s a disgrace and a crying shame. Not to mention unconstitutional. We are not free.

It’s been a wild week. Events are unfolding at breathtaking speed. The world is a far different place than it was last Friday when I posted. Despite the bailout, or because of it, the stock market has tanked and bounced wildly and irrationally. Still no bottom. We are in the midst of global financial collapse. Global recession. And only downward from here, into Depression. For the forseeable future.

Business has slowed dramatically, all across the board. The air pulses with palpable fear.

We have, I think, arrived at a place we would not have recognized even a few short weeks ago. Government bailouts mean government ownership. Nationalization of banks. Fascism looms. Or worse. Even the best case scenario looks pretty dark right now.

Historically, economic collapse is always followed by the tramping sound of the jack-booted feet of great marching armies. There will be war.

Like I said a few weeks ago, store some food and water. Keep your powder dry and hold on to your guns. They’re coming for them soon enough. Hunker down quietly. Don’t make a big scene about what you’re doing. Cherish your family and friends. If events dictate a “gathering of the clans,” these people will be your support. And you will be their’s. Don’t be afraid. Be prepared.

Those who think I’m pedaling hysteria are mistaken. I’m simply a lone guy, with a little blog, commenting on events as I see and interpret them. As for making preparations, we western Christians are far too fatalistic. We sit around, don’t prepare, and say what will be will be. Because if the worst comes, we’ll all go home to be with Jesus. That may well be true, but it’s quite immature. As for God’s promised protections, I think He would expect us to take care of ourselves as much as possible. Including making some basic preparations for unknown but possible disasters. Or bad economic times.

Someone emailed me an excellent article on the issue. Instead of trying to paraphrase it, here’s the link. Should Christians Prepare? Read it for yourself. While I strongly disagree with the guy’s eschatology (If I hear one more prophecy about end times and Russia being “Gog and Magog,” I will need to wrap my head with duct tape to keep it from exploding.), it makes a lot of sense otherwise.