Monday, April 14, 2014

Why does “page not found” sound so familiar?

Kathleen Sebelius was delivering her farewell speech, following her resignation from HHS. She had such a fine roll-out of ObamaCare that her legacy will live forever, I’m sure. There were a limited number of 404 errors (“page not found” errors)…that is if you mean fewer than 12-14 Million. And just to stay in form, she was able to demonstrate similar competence in her speech. Right in the middle, she discovered that there was a page missing! “Page not found!” 404 error! 

If this were a isolated incident, it might (I say MIGHT) be forgivable. But this administration has had a deluge of errors that just won’t let up. Remember corpse for Corps? How about 57 states? Maybe you liked “If you like your policy, you can keep your policy.” Your favorite might have been, “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.” Then there was the announcement that ACA would save most Americans $2,500.00! What a deal! 

Let’s not forget seeing many of those who had made the ultimate sacrifice sitting in the audience.  There was the Austrian language, the Breathalyzer test at the children’s hospital, and the intercontinental railroad. 

Oh, and remember that his uncle helped liberate Auschwitz, and his home state of Illinois is closer to Kentucky than Arkansas, his parents meeting  in Selma 4 years before he was born and his “my Muslim faith” remark.

Oops! I almost forgot about Europe as a country, Eau Claire being a U.S. state and the Constitution being written 20 centuries ago.  

He dutifully reported that a tornado had killed 10,000 people when it had really only killed 20, and the FBI celebrated its 100th day while Obama was in office. He was mostly right about saying that his healthcare plan would bring more “inefficiencies” to the system. He also reminded us that JFK helped bring his father to the United States. 

Oh, gosh! Sunrise, Florida became Sunshine, Florida and Sioux Falls, South Dakota became Sioux City. He also saw fit to deliver a “Love Speech” in Cairo. And there were not enough translators to go around, since there were so many in Iraq, leaving too few to be used in Afghanistan. 

Do you really need me to enumerate the gaffes spoken by Joe Biden? 

How many stupid, seemingly minor, mistakes would have to accumulate to convince you that maybe everybody in the Obama administration is just sort totaly incompetent?

Monday, April 7, 2014

When You don't Like the Question, Side-Step and Equivocate

On April 3, 2014, Hillary Clinton spoke at the Women of the World Summit in New York City and was asked what she was most proud of during her tenure as Secretary of State. Clinton could not provide any concrete examples of the accomplishments she holds in high regard.

“When you look at your time as Secretary of State, what are you most proud of? And what do you feel was unfinished, and maybe have another crack at one day?” the moderator asks.

“Well, I really see — that was good — that’s why he wins prizes. Look, I really see my role as Secretary, in fact leadership in general in a democracy, as a relay race. When you run the best race you can run, you hand off the baton. Some of what hasn’t been finished may go on to be finished, so when President Obama asked me to be Secretary of State I agreed,” Clinton responded.

She continued, “We had the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, we had two wars. We had continuing threats from all kinds of corners around the world that we had to deal with. So it was a perilous time frankly. What he said to me was, ‘Look, I have to be dealing with the economic crisis, I want you to go out and represent us around the world.’ And it was a good division of labor because we needed to make it clear to the rest of the world, that we were going to get our house in order. We were going to stimulate, and grow, and get back to positive growth and work with our friends and partners.”

Saturday, April 5, 2014

CNN and SSM - A Christian/Political Viewpoint

Rachel Held Evans recently wrote on her CNN Belief Blog about evangelicals and their response to Same Sex Marriage (SSM). In her article she was bemoaning a decision by World Vision to reverse their decision not to discriminate against employees in SSMs.

Is that confusing? Here’s what it means. World Vision had adopted a position of not discriminating against their employees because of their “sexual orientation.” Following concerns voiced to them from the evangelical community, they reversed their position. Evans blamed the “reversal” on an outcry from evangelicals, including Southern Baptists and the Assemblies of God, who spoke out to encourage World Vision to reverse their stand.
She reported: “Evangelicals took to Twitter and Facebook to threaten to stop sending money to their sponsored children unless World Vision reversed course.

“Within a day of the initial announcement, more than 2,000 children sponsored by World Vision lost their financial support. And with more and more individuals, churches and organizations threatening to do the same, the charity stood to lose millions of dollars in aid that would otherwise reach the poor, sick, hungry and displaced people World Vision serves.”

She went on to write: “…some people, satisfied with the reversal, have called World Vision headquarters to ask, ‘Can I have my child back?’ as though needy children are expendable bargaining chips in the culture war against gay and lesbian people.

“Many of us who grew up evangelical watched with horror as these events unfolded.”

Then she epistemologically whined about how poorly the homosexual community is treated by evangelicals and questioned why evangelicals quote Bible verses about homosexuality and exclude the passages that refer to taking care of the needy. She asks, “Why are the few passages about homosexuality accepted uncritically, without regard to context or culture, but the many about poverty so easily discarded?”

Her discussion quickly evolved into a discussion of the “gay marriage” battle with Evans complaining that evangelicals’ “victory” is not worth its costs.

OK, let’s make one thing clear. “…ANYBODY (whosoever) believeth in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” That’s from John 3:16. Just as when we argue that “ALL” in Romans 3:23 means “ALL,” we must also argue that “ANYBODY” means “ANYBODY,” unless we think the Bible is inconsistent with itself.

It is not.

A person, a church or a corporation (World Vision) is not “Christian” because it does or does not recognize Same Sex Marriage. It is Christian because it places its trust in, and only in, Christ and His finished work at the cross of Calvary.

Marriage exists in two worlds, the secular world and the Christian world. The secular/ legal world does pretty much as it pleases with regard to marriage. They call marriage what they want to call it, change its meaning according to their most current linguistic trends and holds it generally in disrespect. For centuries the secular/legal world followed the Christian lead in dealing with marriage. That is no longer the case.

The Christian world considers marriage in a totally different light.

In the Christian world view, marriage is a sacred covenant made with God by a man and a woman. Once they are united before God, they are made one by Him. They no longer operate as separate entities. They no longer treat their possessions as “his and hers.” They each give 100% of themselves to the other expecting nothing in return. They understand that marriage is an earthly picture of the relationship between Christ and His Bride, the church. They take seriously Ephesians 5:21. (You had better read that verse. It probably will be a surprise to you.)

At the risk of sounding political, I would like to point out that the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America tells us that “Congress (that is, the federal law making body) shall make NO law respecting an establishment of religion…or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” If the Constitution is worth the paper it’s written on, that means that the federal government cannot interfere with religious matters in any way whatsoever, whether individual or corporate.

What World Vision decides to do about same sex couples is no business of the federal government. It should not be the business of any columnist, either. Since she enjoys the benefits of the very same First Amendment, though, she should be allowed to write what she wants to, which she has done.

That being said, Ms. Evans has proclaimed, “I’m going AWOL on evangelicalism's culture wars so I can get back to following Jesus among its many refugees: LGBT people, women called to ministry, artists, science-lovers, misfits, sinners, doubters, thinkers and “the least of these.”

Sorry. That she cannot do. She cannot have Christ in her heart and call sin “not sin.” She can (and should) help those who need help, regardless of their life choices, but she cannot follow Christ by castigating World Vision for its decision about its employees.

Notice that World Vision has not decided to stop helping the world. They have only decided to make certain decisions regarding their own hiring practices. So, what in the world is Evans complaining about? Does she think she should be the arbiter of what others should do?

(Does this remind you in any way of Hobby Lobby?)

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

OBAMACARE FROM MY PERSPECTIVE

I work in a physician referral call center. People call me to the tune of 150-220 calls per day. There are 35 people in the call center I work in handling the same number of calls. That's between 5,250 and 7,000 calls every day.

The number one question they ask, usually the first words out of their mouths, is "Since my doctor no longer accepts my insurance, can you find me a doctor in my area who does."

That used to be straightforward and relatively easy. Not any more.

Now, I have to make outbound calls to several doctors to find one who accepts the insurance of the person who calls - the "new and improved" ObamaCare insurance.

See, the thing is, you can't keep your doctor unless your doctor conforms to the requirements of ObamaCare for your area. If the doctor you had doesn't, you have to change doctors.

More and more of the doctors on our service have become concierge practices, where their patients pay a set amount per month for unlimited care. It's a trend of the future.

Has anybody been helped by ObamaCare? Probably. My numbers, based on about 900-1,000 calls per week (more people than are included in most surveys), indicate that most have not been. Maybe it will improve now that everybody who will ever be on ObamaCare has it, the ever-changing "deadline" for enrollment having passed.

But I doubt it.

Monday, March 31, 2014