Posts Tagged ‘bible’
Farmer Fincher – in Congress – has collected million$ in subsidies – wants cuts in the food stamps program
A Tennessee congressman who supports billion of dollars in cuts to the food stamp program is one of the largest recipients of federal farm subsidies, according to new annual data released by a Washington environmental group.
Using Agriculture Department data, researchers at the Environmental Working Group found that Representative Stephen Fincher, a Republican and a farmer from Frog Jump, Tenn., collected nearly $3.5 million in subsidies from 1999 to 2012. The data is part of the research group’s online farm subsidy database from which the group issues a report each year.
In 2012 alone, the data shows, Mr. Fincher received about $70,000 in direct payments, money that is given to farmers and farmland owners, even if they do not grow crops. It is unclear how much Mr. Fincher received in crop insurance subsidies because the names of people receiving the subsidies are not public. The group said most of the agriculture subsidies go to the largest, most profitable farm operations in the country. These farmers have received $265 billion in direct payments and farm insurance subsidies since 1995, federal records show.
During debate on the farm bill in the House Agriculture Committee last week, Mr. Fincher was one of the biggest proponents of $20 billion in cuts to food stamps in the legislation. At times he quoted passages from the Bible in defending the cuts…
Scott Faber, vice president of government affairs at the Environmental Working Group, said that Mr. Fincher was being hypocritical. “Not only is he advocating deep cuts to other people’s money while he is getting subsidies, he also voted to increase the subsidies that he benefits from,” Mr. Faber said…
The most significant change in both the House and Senate bills is the end of direct payments, which cost taxpayers about $5 billion a year.
Both the House and Senate bills would use the savings from eliminating direct payments to increase financing for crop insurance, a federally subsidized program that pays 62 percent of the premiums for farmers and covers decreases in crop yields or revenue. About $1.3 billion a year is paid to 15 insurance companies to sell and process the policies…
Food stamps would receive a $4.1 billion cut in the Senate farm bill. An amendment by Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand, Democrat of New York, to reverse the cuts by using money from the crop insurance program was soundly defeated after a passionate plea by Senator Pat Roberts, Republican of Kansas, who called crop insurance vital to farmers.
Someone in Washington, DC, please mail me a penny postcard when Congress decides to subsidize premiums to insure how I make my living.
Meanwhile, the sight, sound and smell of a hypocrite like Congressman Fincher is more than any American should have to bear. The aroma of fermenting pig manure is easier to take than a con artist who hustles the American taxpayer for subsidies – then whines about families trying to get by on food stamps like they’re some kind of danger to national freedom.
He should get an honest job.
To promote breast cancer awareness, supporters buy pink shirts, pink shoes, pink mouse pads and a host of other pink products.
Until Wednesday, there was even a pink version of the Holman Christian Standard Bible on store shelves. That’s no longer the case.
Southern Baptist-owned LifeWay Christian Resources is recalling its pink Bible because it benefited a charity with ties to Planned Parenthood. The “Here’s Hope Breast Cancer Bible” was sold at Walmart stores and other major retailers, with a dollar per copy going to the Dallas-based Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation.
LifeWay decided to recall the Bible after receiving complaints that some of the breast cancer charity’s local affiliates donated funds to Planned Parenthood…
The Komen foundation issued a statement of its own, saying that LifeWay’s decision was disappointing and that all funds from the Bible sales would go to breast cancer programs. Andrea Rader, from the charity’s marketing communication department, said LifeWay had pledged $25,000…
Komen has acknowledged that some funds have gone to Planned Parenthood for breast cancer screenings, saying its Planned Parenthood funding paid for 139,000 breast exams and about 5,000 mammograms, detecting 177 cases of cancer in the past five years, according to the charity’s website…
Darlene Jacobs of Mt. Juliet, a supporter of the foundation, said the LifeWay decision was shameful. She says she has raised money for the charity ever since a friend was diagnosed with cancer seven or eight years ago and that Komen does great work…
“I don’t think it is very Christian to take money from poor women who were receiving mammograms with that money,” she said. “Are all the Christians going to boycott Komen altogether…?”
Which presumably won’t be the case. I would hope that most folks practicing one of the 57 varieties of Christianity popular in the United States aren’t sectarian and bigoted against women having rights, women’s organizations supporting a multiplicity of goals, and good sense overcoming religious fanaticism.
A group of Franciscan monks furious at the theft of bibles from their church in Florence have taken the unusual step of praying for the thief to be struck down by diarrhoea.
Monks at the 15th century church of San Salvatore al Monte, which was a favourite of Michelangelo, were irritated when a rare and expensive bible disappeared from the lectern, and they flew off the handle when a replacement bible donated by a worshipper also went missing and within a few hours.
In a note, pinned up in full view of worshippers, the monks say they hope the thief sees the error of his ways. But in case he does not, they add: “We pray to God that the thief is struck by a strong bout of the shits.”
This turn of events will, they hope, “encourage him to carry out no further thefts“.
Not your usual biblical punishment; but, it’s the thought that counts, eh?
Up to 150 students at a Missouri high school that ordered “Slaughterhouse-Five” pulled from its library shelves can get a free copy of the novel, courtesy of the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library…
The offer for students at Republic High School comes on the heels of the Republic School Board’s decision to remove Vonnegut’s novel and Sarah Ockler’s “Twenty Boy Summer” from the curriculum and the school library shelves.
“All of these students will be eligible to vote and some may be protecting our country through military service in the next year or two,” Julia Whitehead, the executive director of the Vonnegut library in Indianapolis, said in a statement.
“It is shocking and unfortunate that those young adults and citizens would not be considered mature enough to handle the important topics raised by Kurt Vonnegut, a decorated war veteran. Everyone can learn something from his book.”
Slaughterhouse-Five, considered Vonnegut’s most influential and popular work, is a satirical novel centered around the bombing of the German city of Dresden during World War Two.
The Republic School District took the move at its April 18 meeting following a complaint lodged by local resident Wesley Scroggins in the spring of 2010.
In his complaint, the Missouri State University associate business professor called on district officials to stop using textbooks and other materials “that create false conceptions of American history and government or that teach principles contrary to Biblical morality and truth.”
The school district members immediately rolled over and stuck all four hooves in the air in response to this heavenly command. Any matted fleece will be combed at shearing time to guarantee Christian purity.
Meanwhile, the real world progressed in its journey beyond the gates of ignorance and obedience – and Republic High School.
Evangelist and revival leader Ernest Cadick passionately preached God’s word, according to pastors in Indiana and Kentucky. But salvation wasn’t the only thing he was selling.
Approaching potential investors in churches, the ordained minister solicited $719,150 over 15 years for oil and gas ventures, then spent the money on himself, according to a federal indictment.
Cadick also used the apocalyptic prophecies in the Book of Revelation to fleece additional churchgoers at Louisville’s Evangel World Prayer Center, according to another indictment returned in state court, allegedly telling them that when President Barack Obama was elected, the dollar’s value would plummet to 3 cents as it was replaced with a new currency.
If they gave him their saving, the indictment alleges, he would fly it to Switzerland, where it would earn double their investment back each month.
Now the 60-year-old traveling evangelist is facing two separate trials — one in state court and another in federal — on those allegations.
He will be tried July 11 in Jefferson Circuit Court on three counts of theft for allegedly taking $29,500 from elderly victims in the Swiss investment scheme.
And he is scheduled to be tried today in Louisville federal court on 16 counts of fraud for allegedly taking money for oil and gas ventures and foreign currency investments and spending the money on himself, according to his indictment…
Long detailed article. Another Christian hustler who would kneel down and pray with his victims to convince them to fork over their savings in return for God’s guarantee of salvation – and more profits.
Investors sometimes make dumb decisions. Investors who make decisions based on “revealed word” and scripture written by a King’s committee in the 17th Century are beyond dumb.
Reenactment honor guard of the 173rd Regiment N.Y.S.V.
With their riders dressed in pressed shirts and denim, sleek, shiny horses clip-clopped through quiet residential streets in East Austin on Saturday, headed for the starting point of the annual Juneteenth parade.
But at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Comal Street, the serenity of a weekend morning soon gave way to an ebullient street party. There, rainbow-colored candies rained from the sky, and children rushed the street to snatch them. From the back of a convertible, a teen beauty queen in a pink gown and silver tiara waved royally. Two dozen line dancers shook their hips, and seven men slapped African drums to a pulsating beat. In his parked cruiser, a police officer rocked and swayed in his seat to the bass-heavy thump of “Billie Jean,” and some of those same early-rising horses pranced in place for the thousands lining the streets.
These were just a few of the sights, sounds and rhythms of Juneteenth in Austin.
Juneteenth commemorates the bittersweet anniversary of the day — June 19, 1865 — when Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger landed at Galveston to deliver the news that the Civil War had ended and that blacks were free from slavery. The news was old. President Lincoln had delivered his Emancipation Proclamation some 2½ years earlier, but slavery continued in Texas and the South.
Commemorating the struggles of forefathers and the slaves is the cornerstone of all Juneteenth events, festive or otherwise, said many lining the parade route.
“I think it’s important that we remember our history. Therefore we can always face the future,” said Rudy Hicks of Pflugerville, who with Judy Connor and her 6-year-old granddaughter Jasmine, watched from the shade of a tent outside a family member’s home. Hicks said he has attended the parade since he was a child.
“Sure.. you say that now.. but just think how remarkable it would
have been if I had been RIGHT ! “
A.C.Grayling says his book…doesn’t attack religion, it’s a positive book, there’s nothing negative in it. People may think it’s against religion – but it isn’t.” But then he says, with a mischievous twinkle: “Of course, what would really help the book a lot in America is if somebody tries to shoot me.”
With any luck it shouldn’t come to that, but Grayling is almost certainly going to upset a lot of Christians, for what he has written is a secular bible. The Good Book mirrors the Bible in both form and language, and is, as its author says, “ambitious and hubristic – a distillation of the best that has been thought and said by people who’ve really experienced life, and thought about it”. Drawing on classical secular texts from east and west, Grayling has “done just what the Bible makers did with the sacred texts”, reworking them into a “great treasury of insight and consolation and inspiration and uplift and understanding in the great non-religious traditions of the world”. He has been working on his opus for several decades, and the result is an extravagantly erudite manifesto for rational thought…
Who does he think will read The Good Book? “Well, I’m hoping absolutely every human being on the planet.” He’s sure that a lot of people will wonder just who he thinks he is, to have written a bible, but doesn’t appear particularly troubled by this prospect. “The truth is that the book is very modestly done. My wife did give me a card,” he giggles, “that said, ‘I used to be an atheist until I realised I am God’. And I know that on Monty Pythonesque grounds there’s a good likelihood that in five centuries time I will be one, as a result of this.” He lets out another little chuckle. “But I certainly don’t feel like one now, that’s for sure.”
The little jokes and kindly bearing can make Grayling sound quite benignly jovial about religion at times, as he chuckles away about “men in dresses” and “believing in fairies at the bottom of the garden”, and throws out playfully mocking asides such as, “You can see we no longer really believe in God, because of all the CCTV cameras keeping watch on us.” But when I suggest that he sounds less enraged than amused by religion, he says quickly: “Well, it does make me angry, because it causes a great deal of harm and unhappiness…”
… We have to try to persuade society as a whole to recognise that religious groups are self-constituted interest groups; they exist to promote their point of view. Now, in a liberal democracy they have every right to do so. But they have no greater right than anybody else, any political party or Women’s Institute or trade union. But for historical reasons they have massively overinflated influence – faith-based schools, religious broadcasting, bishops in the House of Lords, the presence of religion at every public event. We’ve got to push it back to its right size.”
Atheists, according to Grayling, divide into three broad categories. There are those for whom this secular objection to the privileged status of religion in public life is the driving force of their concern. Then there are those, “like my chum Richard Dawkins”, who are principally concerned with the metaphysical question of God’s existence. “And I would certainly say there is an intrinsic problem about belief in falsehood.” In other words, even if a person’s faith did no harm to anybody, Grayling still wouldn’t like it. “But the third point is about our ethics – how we live, how we treat one another, what the good life is. And that’s the question that really concerns me the most.”
Exactly the same round robin of reflection I encountered and resolved when still a teenager. The atheist part came first and easiest. Studying materialist philosophy – especially as a dialectic, a mirror of physical processes in science – took a bit more work and brought an enormous amount of satisfaction in knowledge.
A study habit I’ve never lost and never will.
“Damn right we’re crusading! …”
Coded references to New Testament Bible passages about Jesus Christ are inscribed on high-powered rifle sights provided to the United States military by a Michigan company, an ABC News investigation has found.
The sights are used by U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and in the training of Iraqi and Afghan soldiers. The maker of the sights, Trijicon, has a $660 million multi-year contract to provide up to 800,000 sights to the Marine Corps, and additional contracts to provide sights to the U.S. Army.
U.S. military rules specifically prohibit the proselytizing of any religion in Iraq or Afghanistan and were drawn up in order to prevent criticism that the U.S. was embarked on a religious “Crusade” in its war against al Qaeda and Iraqi insurgents.
One of the citations on the gun sights, 2COR4:6, is an apparent reference to Second Corinthians 4:6 of the New Testament, which reads: “For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”
Other references include citations from the books of Revelation, Matthew and John dealing with Jesus as “the light of the world.” John 8:12, referred to on the gun sights as JN8:12, reads, “Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Trijicon confirmed to ABCNews.com that it adds the biblical codes to the sights sold to the U.S. military.
“… and don’t you forget it!”
Update: Company will stop citing its bible on our weapons. First they take prayer out of the schools, now this. What would granma think?
It’s like a game of Whac-A-Mole. The ACLU smacks down one violation of religious freedom only to watch another one pop up at some other Tennessee school. In the latest, the ACLU threatened to sue and Wilson County succumbed, agreeing to stop allowing the distribution of Bibles to students during school hours.
Here’s how it worked in Wilson County. In an annual scene not too much unlike something out of Afghanistan, fifth-graders were herded into a gym where a teacher spoke in glowing terms about the first time she was given a Bible. She then called up each row of children to retrieve a Bible from a basket full of them.
The teacher explained that taking a Bible was not necessary or mandatory. But guess what? At least one child took a Bible only because she felt pressured and was afraid her classmates would ostracize her if she didn’t. Her parents complained to the ACLU, which hit this mole directly on the head.
“Decisions about religion should be left in the hands of families and faith communities, not public school officials,” said Edmund J. Schmidt III, an ACLU cooperating attorney. “The vital constitutional principle of religious liberty is best protected when the government stays out of religion. Students and their families cannot feel comfortable expressing their religious beliefs when their teachers and administrators are imposing their own particular religious beliefs.”
Separation of public schools from religious education has long been established. Some parts of the Bible Belt still haven’t caught up with reading Supreme Court decisions from the 19th Century – much less the 20th. That’s all.
Kudos to Jeff Woods