Whole Lot of Shaking Going to Happen!

With God’s help, An Excellent Spirit will post on the Benghazi Hearings beginning tomorrow and the increasing prospects that, unless President Obama begins to come clean and tell America the truth about what he did and did not do and did or did not order on the night of September 11, 2012, he could be impeached! Stories like these are beginning to come out. Here An Excellent Spirit posted at length about Cross Border Authority and how, if Obama ordered “everything be immediately done to secure the lives of the Americans on the ground in Benghazi” on the fateful night when four Americans died, apparently from gross neglect of duty by the President himself and Sec. State Clinton, Sec. Def. Panetta and others, NOTHING WAS DONE AND FOUR BRAVE AMERICANS DIED! Here

The other subject on which we feel led to post is the issue of LIARS and the LIES they tell. What happens to these demonic individuals? What can Americans begin to expect a Holy God to do in support of HIS OWN WORD? His Word is forever settled in Heaven(Ps119:89); It is exalted, even above HIS NAME! (Ps 138:2) His Word does not return to God void(Isaiah 55:11a); it accomplished ALL that God sets it to do!(Isaiah 55:11b) God is NOT a man that HE should LIE, not is God the son of a man that HE should repent` take back His Word! (Numbers 23:19)  Finally, God says, “Have I not said it (MY WORD) and shall I not bring it (My Word) to pass”? (Ezekiel 12:25) What will become of those who are revealed to be LIARS against the TRUTH and God’s Holy admonishment that we are to be Holy because HE, GOD ALMIGHTY, our Creator and Heavenly Father, IS HOLY?  An Excellent Spirit will attempt to set forth a few options and see what our readers think. Stay tuned, Mishpucka! Baruch HaShem!

 

Telling It Like It Is

This CNS News article by Michael Chapman is more than food for thought. It is an indictment of American values as reflected in the twisted ideology of its President. Read the whole thing here. The article details the pronouncement of NYC (Brooklyn) Catholic Arch Bishop. ” Nicholas DiMarzio, the Catholic bishop of thediocese of Brooklyn, N.Y.,  says that in his zealous support for abortion, President Barack Obama has used his position not to help mothers and children in difficult circumstances but instead has been an advocate for that which “is shameful and criminal in the eyes of Almighty God.” Emphasis ours.

Catholic Archbishop Nicholas DiMarzo, Bishop of the Diocese of Brooklyn, New York.

An Excellent Spirit has written on the culture of death at work in the world and specifically in America. Here Bishop DiMarzo, it seems would agree. “In his column for the diocesan newspaper The Tablet, entitled “Deeper Into the Culture of Death,” Bishop DiMarzio praises Abraham Lincoln, the abolition of slavery, and notes how far the nation has come in electing Obama as president. DiMarzio also notes the 40th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s  Roe v. Wade decision, which legalized abortion through all nine months of pregnancy and how Obama has promoted that decision.”

We have also written on abortion and its roots in the race cleansing politics of the fanatic Margaret Sanger and the other anti-American, anti-Christ twisted, immoral thinkers that founded Planned Parenthood. Here BishopDiMarzo takes up that argument: “The so-called ‘pro-choice’ movement has its roots in the ideology of Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, who understood her call to be one who would ‘assist the race toward the elimination of the unfit,’” states Bishop DiMarzio.  “Of course, a young Barack Obama was precisely the sort of unfit child that Sanger and her allies would want to eliminate.”

It is almost impossible to get a handle on exactly who our President is. Culturally he is close to Anti-American. Many have said he is anti-colonialist from his father’s influence. Others have said he is anti-Israeli and pro Muslim. We have even carried the story of his possible Muslim faith and the curious tale of his wedding ring. Here The bottom line is what a person does and those with whom they associate. DiMarzo correctly aligns President Obama and his policies against Judeo Christian values and the Word of God. “Tragically, the President has not been an advocate for those young children faced with similarly difficult circumstances,” says Bp. DiMarzio. “He has chosen to use the bully pulpit not to call upon us all to be nobler and to embrace each child, regardless of origins and circumstances; rather, he has been a proponent of an expediency that is shameful and criminal in the eyes of Almighty God.”

This nation is faced with hard, critical times. It is not because of any inherent weakness of our people or our system. Just look anywhere else to dispel those thoughts that the left foist on us through our far left lamestream media and academia. There is nothing better. There is no people more giving, compassionate, free and joyful than Americans. That includes those who have come here (even illegally) and bask in the freedom and all that means to a person’s psyche and quality of life.

Bishop DiMarzo, the leader of the largest borough of New York City, the diocese of Brooklyn, containing about 1.5 million Catholics, 206 parishes, and 119 Catholic schools is a spiritual leader of a city of faith and should be listened to, not only by Catholics, but by every American. That would include, first and foremost our newly re-elected President, no matter what his faith or roots. He is our President. It is time Barack Hussein Obama started acting like it, abroad and here at home. DiMarzo concludes, “I would have hoped that the first African-American president of the United States would have stood on the side of freedom for all,” says Bishop DiMarzio in conclusion.  “Instead, he stands on the side of political expediency. Mr. Lincoln, with great difficulty, put out into the deep and paid with his life. Would that our political leaders today would have some of the same courage.”

Americans must decide if this nation will continue down the path to cultivating this spirit of death. Until Americans see the connection between death by maniac in the schools and the devalued culture of death abortion inculcates in all of us, we risk falling prey to more and worse forms of that terrible spirit. Religious leaders like Bishop DiMarzo must speak up and their congregants must begin to do so as well and vote that conviction above all else. God is the author and giver of life. “Revelation 4:11 says, “You are worthy, Jehovah, even our God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power, because you created all things, and because of your will they existed and were created.” So God created all things, including man’s life. Genesis chapter 1 and 2 talks about creation, Gen 2:7 says, “Jehovah God proceeded to form the man out of dust from the ground and to blow into his nostrils the breath of life”.

In Deuteronomy 30:19 God says to all His creation, “I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live;  that you may love the Lord your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days; and that you may dwell in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them.” There were really only two trees in the Garden from which God banned Adam and Eve after they sinned. The tree of the knowledge of good and evil which God said would only lead to death and the Tree of Life. How many times does God have to tell us? We can either have life or death. We choose, but there is no third choice, no cop out, no way to evade His Truth. And no one can have it both ways. Emphasis ours.

America must ask the essential question: How can man, the creation say to God, the Creator, the choices that You gave to us between life and death (Deuteronomy 30:19)? We choose death! The prophet Isaiah wrote about this kind of reasoning. In Isaiah 45:9, he said, ““Woe to him who strives with him who formed him, a pot among earthen pots! Does the clay say to him who forms it, ‘What are you making?’ or ‘Your work has no handles’?” That is what we are doing, America. Bishop DiMarzo is merely pointing that out in a civilized, calm manner. God will not be so calm about the death of what He has created.

Well said, Bishop! Your words ring loud here on earth and in Heaven. May God bless America.

Something Worth Writing About

Meade and Prettyman Courthouse home of US Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia

An Excellent Spirit has been on extended hiatus. Between several critical health issues and the fact that we did not read or see anything worth writing about, we have kept our vigilance at a high level and our rhetoric at a low ebb. Until today. There is finally something to write about. This Washington Post bulletin just came through:  “President Obama exceeded his constitutional authority when he named three members of the National Labor Relations Board while the Senate was on a break last year, a federal appeals court ruled Friday. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled that allowing the president to make such appointments as a way around Senate opposition “would wholly defeat the purpose of the Framers in the careful separation of powers structure” they created.”

As Hillary Clinton recently and famously asked, “What difference” does this make? First, it must be cautioned that the United States Supreme Court will in all likelihood review this decision as there are some conflicts with cases already decided in the opposite direction in the past. “The ruling acknowledged that it conflicts in parts with what other federal appeals courts have held about recess appointments. The issue is likely to be decided by the Supreme Court.” That said, the action of one of the most liberal Circuit Courts of Appeal is noteworthy and, if affirmed, far reaching in its affect.

First, all of President Obama’s recess appointments that were designed to thwart the US Senate’s refusal to confirm his ultra leftist nominees will be invalidated. Second and even more far reaching is the consequence that all actions of the National Relations Labor Board (NLRB) taken with those recess appointments in place will be invalidated, sine die (immediately!). The Court knew this and said so in its decision. “The decision flatly rejected the administration’s rationale for appointing the board members, and jeopardizes the separate recess appointment of former Ohio attorney general Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Cordray is the subject of a different lawsuit.”

National Relations Labor Board Meeting

For readers who desire more specific information while we wait for the published decision, we always recommend The Volkoh Conspiracy. Here is its first impression post on the case today. We also read avidly, Legal Insurrection. Here is Cornell Law School Professor William A. Jacobson’s initial reaction. He also links to a PDF version of the full decision for your information.

So, what is all the fuss about? First, a sitting President has just been rebuked, publically, by a liberal Circuit Court of Appeals 3 Judge Panel, unanimously, we note, on an issue that reverses and leaves in limbo numerous decisions of a Federal Agency (NLRB). That is rare. Second, the President, just re-elected and re-inaugurated, was believed to have clear sailing on almost any issue he championed, no matter what the opposition. That is all on hold now. When a Court of Appeal says the Emperor has no clothes, it is at least worth a closer look at his raiment. At the very least his momentum has been slowed from an entirely unforeseen direction. Let’s all take a deep breath!

President Obama after getting the news of the D.C. Circuit’s vacating of his NLRB recess appointments.

Andrew McCarthy, our source on Jihad and the Blind Sheik, penned this on the decision.  We have written about McCarthy in our pieces on the Blind Sheik and others. Here and here.  McCarthy addressed some of the technical issues to be decided on appeal to the Supreme Court. “Expect lots of people harmed by NLRB and CFPB determinations and pronouncements to head to court. Also expect the administration to appeal to the Supreme Court. While the D.C. Circuit’s constitutional analysis is compelling, there is an interesting question as to whether it had jurisdiction to reach the constitutional issues given that the petitioner failed to raise them before the NLRB. The panel found that it did, and its reasoning is persuasive, but the judges concede that there is no precedent directly on point. I’d bet on the Supreme Court affirming today’s ruling, but I think we’ll also be hearing a lot of banter from the administration spin machine about judicial overreach — the spin machine doubling as a chutzpah machine.”

Andrew C. McCarthy of Ordered Liberty

Finally, An Excellent Spirit has seen little to write about these past weeks, as the opposition has devolved into a mass of ineffectiveness and appeasement. The Congress has bowed its head and meekly done whatever it could to appear to be led to the gallows by a triumphant White House. As Hillary said, “What difference does it make?” Well, folks, the unlikely District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals, Three Judge Panel, ruling for the entire court, has at least brought that question back on the front burner and we may just find out that President Obama’s barely concealed contempt for the Constitution, Congress, the Courts and the American People who are not to the left of Saul Alinsky might just make some difference. Stay tuned. If it grows, this could be something to write about. God bless America.

The Change We Wanted? The Change We Have!

An Excellent Spirit has taken much time to reflect on what is happening in and to America in the wake of the 2012 Election and the many problems we face and the many issues and hurdles we must overcome or succumb to as we go forward. We find especially helpful and pertinent Roger Simon’s recent column on his PJ Media entitled “Political Change – Revisited” Here Mr. Simon, as usual, deals with the realities of change in America based on his personal journey from a Hollywood liberal transformed forever by September 11, 2001 to a conservative on everything but social values. (Simon unabashedly remains a liberal on social values, he says.) His growing Internet empire, PJ Media includes Instapundit, PJ Media, PJTV, Vodkapundit and other outlets, are all on the conservative side, including some social conservatives on the issues of abortion, selective abortion and marriage.

This brings us and Simon to the question: what will it take for Americans to decide for conservatism and against liberalism and to actually vote that way despite the fear and habits of 50-75 years?  While this is a good question, no one seems to have any better answer than Obama. What a shame. Read the whole thing.

Roger L. Simon, author, playwright, founder and CEO of PJ Media

Victor Davis Hanson, one of the two towering twins of Stanford University (Thomas Sowell is the other) recently wrote about the importance of being “hip” in our cultural wasteland. Here  Hanson really hit it on all cylinders. “The nexus of big government, big money, and globalization has created a new creed of squaring the circle of being both liberal and yet elitist, egalitarian-talking but rich-acting, talking like a 99 percenter and living like a 1 percenter. And the rub is not that the two poles are contradictory, but that they are, in fact, necessary for each other: talking about the people means it is OK to live unlike the people. In short, we can all be just what we profess to be. The key in our world of blue-jeaned billionaires is being hip — or rather at least professing to be hip.”

Victor Davis Hanson at Stanford University’s Hoover Institute

Then Hanson got down to cases. “But what is hip? Mostly it is a state of mind, a religion, a talk, a look, an outward persona that is the key that unlocks you from the ramifications of your ideology. Hip is like “cool”, whose power I wrote about not long ago: a general sense of tapping into the popular youth culture of music, fashion, food, electronics, easy left-wing politics, and adolescent habit. Hipness is a tool designed to justify enjoying the riches and leisure produced by the American brand of Western market capitalism by poking fun at it, teasing it some, dressing it up a bit to suggest ambivalence over its benefits without ever seriously either understanding their source or, much less, losing them. We feel hip at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods, but not so much in the organic section of Safeway.”

“Hip” according to Hanson means never having to say you are sorry for anything or anybody. “Hip also plays out as professed caring — worrying in the abstract about all sorts of endangered species, starving peoples, or degraded environments. It is being loudly angry at retrograde forces — white males, the rich, gun owners, Christians, family types, and suburbanites, the sorts who ostensibly crafted the toxicity of Western civilization that you are forced to use and enjoy. Yet embrace hip, and all things become possible. A Martian would see the modern university as an elitist enclave, where life-long tenured professors make lots of money overseen by hordes of even better-paid administrators, that together cause tuition for cash-strapped and indebted students to rise faster than the rate of inflation without any promises that their eventual certifications will result in commensurate good jobs. A non-Martian would instead appreciate the hip nexus of diversity, eco-caring, and gender-neutral inclusivity. Hip is a sort of Neanderthal mentality that is terrified of serious thinking, and thus substitutes the superfluous for the profound.”

This is what America has become about in 2013. The Fiscal Cliff is not real; it is “hip” to be unafraid and unaware of the consequences of doing the same thing over and over again, even if it does not work. (Insanity in the real, un-hip world). We now inhabit a world that is completely dominated by the hip and the evidence is everywhere. Hanson, again, nails it. “Tell an uninformed hipster that Obama wants to outlaw abortion, and abortion can suddenly become very unhip.”

“Hip is furor over Cheneyite Scooter Libby — tried for an Orwellian crime that didn’t exist, and if it did exist, it was committed by someone else — while snoozing through Fast and Furious and Benghazi. Hip is certainly not Halliburton, but most certainly is Solyndra. The unhip Patriot Act, renditions, and Guantanamo are suddenly now kind of hip; so are drone targeted-assassinations — a sort of “How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Predator.” If we bomb Iran, we will be OK — if only Snoop Dogg high-fives the mission, the pilots are gay, the bombers run on biofuels, and the shrapnel is recyclable. Let us hope that the outgoing F-22s have a Che logo painted on the side as they blow stuff up.” Better still, let’s blow it all up using WMD’s we liberated from Libya by giving them to Egypt’s hip Muslim Brotherhood to use on the grossly unhip Israel. 65 years is enough. Already!” Read the whole thing for more examples of the foibles of being “hip” and the danger to America.

It definitely is “hip” to re-cycle the indefensible and make it mainstream. Ergo John Kerry and Chuck Hagel, super locks for the worst Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense tandem in recorded history. Warren Buffet is the hippest of the hip billionaires. Donald Trump is crass, misogynistic and a birther. Then there is our President. Hanson says “Barack Obama baffles his detractors. How can one who golfs so frequently, or who vacations in only the most tony resorts, keep haranguing the nation about the transgressions of the one percent? When he sees them stroll by on Martha’s Vineyard, does he jump up and shout out at their mansions: “You didn’t build that!”? How did corpse-man not win the NPR vitriol that nu-cu-lar had in the past? How could Obama in 2006 vote against raising the debt ceiling, in 2008 call Bush unpatriotic for deficit spending, upon entering office promise to halve the deficit by the end of his first term, and then oversee some $5 trillion in new borrowing? Hip: borrowing became “stimulus”; entitlements, “investments”; and paying it all back became “paying your fair share.” In Obama’s case, he is not just black, but black with an exotic name and a liberal ideology, unlike a Clarence Thomas, who is most unhip — being right-wing, not of mixed race, with an ordinary American name (Clarence?), veteran of the prejudices of the pre-Civil Rights south. Could not Thomas shorten his name to just the single Tomré? Or perhaps go the Van Jones made-up route — Van Thomas? In a shallow and superficial America you can make all the money you like without being dubbed selfish or greedy, frequent all the most exclusive resorts without being a one-percenter, and commit all the politically incorrect sins you wish without being tagged a reactionary — but you better try to be hip first.”

An Excellent Spirit is, like Roger Simon and Victor Davis Hanson troubled by what we see coming down the road at America. We are more troubled, however, that America seems unlikely to have any hope of meeting the challenges. After all, we are the Hippest of the Hip. As long as the world has no clue as to what works and what does not, America will probably get away with being the hippest. What happens when truth meets reality and media and reality become ineffective to pass off “hip” as competent, effective and true?

Stay tuned, An Excellent Spirit has more in days to come. After all, it is not “hip” to shoot from the lip. Get it? We’ve got it.

Thomas Sowell – An Educator Speaks About Education

An Excellent Spirit reads what Thomas Sowell writes. In his latest Townhall column,  Professor Sowell takes a look at teachers and what they are teaching our children. “Many years ago, as a young man, I read a very interesting book about the rise of the Communists to power in China. In the last chapter, the author tried to explain why and how this had happened. Among the factors he cited were the country’s educators. That struck me as odd, and not very plausible, at the time. But the passing years have made that seem less and less odd, and more and more plausible. Today, I see our own educators playing a similar role in creating a mindset that undermines American society.”

An Excellent Spirit has written about the sad state of American education and what can be done about it. Here and here. For a complete list of our articles on education, go here.

Sowell, one of the most sought after professors at Stanford, knows whereof he speaks. He has been in academia most of his celebrated life. He points out that schools, from the founding of the Republic, were considered our most important institution to teach our children our history and the knowledge they would need to understand and perpetuate the Republic. “Schools were once thought of as places where a society’s knowledge and experience were passed on to the younger generation. But, about a hundred years ago, Professor John Dewey of Columbia University came up with a very different conception of education — one that has spread through American schools of education, and even influenced education in countries overseas. Dewey, the inventor of the Dewey Decimal System that allows school libraries to function could have stopped with that most helpful contribution, but he was interested in something more sinister. “John Dewey saw the role of the teacher, not as a transmitter of a society’s culture to the young, but as an agent of change — someone strategically placed, with an opportunity to condition students to want a different kind of society.”

Dewey knew that teachers were by and large disaffected liberal ideologues. He was one and Columbia University was a hotbed of radicalism and anti-American fervor. Dewey and his ilk, by then strongly ingrained in the educational academia took advantage of the coming power of teacher’s unions to seal the deal and totally dominate and pervert the American Educational System, from top to bottom. The results have been catastrophic. An Excellent Spirit has written on the sad state of our children’s and grandchildren’s education. Here. We have reported on the awful fall in the ranking of our children’s quality of education and the concomitant fall in their ability to compete in the job market with now better educated foreign students. The actual ratings are appalling. Geographic.org publishes its rankings shown here. There are many other rankings from many other sites. One thing they all agree on it that The United States of America no longer leads the world in educating our children. In fact as the Geographic.org report shows, we rank far down the list in all three disciplines. Our “three R’s” have become three X’s.

There are many Internet sites available for our readers to make sure their children learn about our heritage and the values that made America strong and a leader in the world these last 225 years. One such site is WallBuilders, David Barton’s anointed, fearless Christian organization that does yeoman work in standing for education and educational curriculae across America. David has written several books An Excellent Spirit highly recommends: The Jefferson Lies and America’s Godly Heritage are two essentials. Go there and purchase books, videos and David’s writings. Every child should read The Light and The Glory, by Peter Marshall and David Manuel. This book was published in 1980 and has been a beacon of truth and facts about the founding of the United States and what our Founding Fathers intended.

WallBuilders Founder and CEO David Barton

Back to Thomas Sowell. “A century later, we are seeing schools across America indoctrinating students to believe in all sorts of politically correct notions. The history that is taught in too many of our schools is a history that emphasizes everything that has gone bad, or can be made to look bad, in America — and that gives little, if any, attention to the great achievements of this country. If you think that is an exaggeration, get a copy of “A People’s History of the United States” by Howard Zinn and read it. As someone who used to read translations of official Communist newspapers in the days of the Soviet Union, I know that those papers’ attempts to degrade the United States did not sink quite as low as Howard Zinn’s book. That book has sold millions of copies, poisoning the minds of millions of students in schools and colleges against their own country. But this book is one of many things that enable teachers to think of themselves as “agents of change,” without having the slightest accountability for whether that change turns out to be for the better or for the worse — or, indeed, utterly catastrophic.”  As assigned reading, as part of the academic curriculae in America, any book can become a best seller. When students must read and are tested on the content, it sticks in their minds. When their professors, teachers and aides recommend and laud these books, a climate is created. When that climate is repeated year after year. You get the results that American education is getting.

Sowell himself is the author of over 30 books, innumerable articles and papers. He was educated at Harvard, Columbia and University of Chicago. He is one of our foremost authors, economists, philosophers and social theorists. Here

Thomas Sowell concludes his article, “This misuse of schools to undermine one’s own society is not something confined to the United States or even to our own time. It is common in Western countries for educators, the media and the intelligentsia in general, to single out Western civilization for special condemnation for sins that have been common to the human race, in all parts of the world, for thousands of years. Meanwhile, all sorts of fictitious virtues are attributed to non-Western societies, and their worst crimes are often passed over in silence, or at least shrugged off by saying some such thing as “Who are we to judge?” Even in the face of mortal dangers, political correctness forbids us to use words like “terrorist” when the approved euphemism is “militant.” Milder terms such as “illegal alien” likewise cannot pass the political correctness test, so it must be replaced by another euphemism, “undocumented worker.” Some think that we must tiptoe around in our own country, lest some foreigners living here or visiting here be offended by the sight of an American flag or a Christmas tree in some institutions. In France between the two World Wars, the teachers’ union decided that schools should replace patriotism with internationalism and pacifism. Books that told the story of the heroic defense of French soldiers against the German invaders at Verdun in 1916, despite suffering massive casualties, were replaced by books that spoke impartially about the suffering of all soldiers — both French and German — at Verdun. Germany invaded France again in 1940, and this time the world was shocked when the French surrendered after just 6 weeks of fighting — especially since military experts expected France to win. But two decades of undermining French patriotism and morale had done their work.

American schools today are similarly undermining American society as one unworthy of defending, either domestically or internationally. If there were nuclear attacks on American cities, how long would it take for us to surrender, even if we had nuclear superiority — but were not as willing to die as our enemies were?” Emphasis ours.

Thank you, Thomas Sowell for saying what needed to be said. In this desperate time of Fiscal Cliff’s and Taxmageddons. With the threat of war, nuclear war and cyberspace abyss staring all of us in the face, there are voices that the American people can trust, thinkers and truth tellers. In order to know what America should do, its citizens must first understand the times in which we live, the threats to our liberties and safety and those who would harm our families. Thomas Sowell is an “Essential”. Stay tuned.

2013 – The Year Of America’s Second Civil War?

An Excellent Spirit has read about the civil disturbances in Argentina after the elevation of leftist, wealth redistributionist Christina Kirchner Fernandez to the Presidency. Here and here.  We have seen the new President in Havana with Hugo Chavez and in the embrace of President Obama. We have read the stories of her demand that Great Britain return the Falkland Islands to Argentina and the British response of another war before that happens. What next?

President Obama and Presidente Fernandez of Argentina

An Excellent Spirit has also read an article by Arthur Herman that discusses the chances of civil war in the United States in 2013. Here  “The New Year has started with a monstrosity of a budget deal, one that proves that neither political party, Democrats or Republicans, is really serious about controlling the growth of big government. But soap opera dramatics about fiscal “cliffs” and sequestration shouldn’t deflect from where President Obama is really taking this country. Consider this story from the Wall Street Journal a few days before Christmas: “Thousands of people in several Argentine cities ransacked supermarkets for a second day in the latest challenge to President Christina Kirchner, who is struggling to revive a weak economy…In the central city Rosario, two people were killed during the incidents and 137 people arrested. Washington’s Republicans and Democrats alike have become the toll collectors on the road to serfdom”

Venezuelan Dictator Chavez with Argentina’s President Christina Fernandez

Herman goes on to point to Argentina’s wealth redistributionist policies and the toll they have taken on the Argentine economy and the proud people. “The violence puts Mrs. Kirchner in a difficult position as the poor are [her] core constituents…Her government spends billions of dollars a year to help low income families, including free health care…[Yet] Argentine activists who claim to represent the poor traditionally block access to supermarkets in the month of December to demand free food and other items…The latest events were some of the worst acts of looting and vandalism in years…. Local media showed dozens of men, women, and children hauling away televisions, refrigerators, and food.”

Widespread rioting and looting in Argentina in December 2012 and January 2013

Herman then returns to his theme of “takers and makers” in the United States: “Some have said my warnings about a coming civil war between makers and takers are exaggerated. It’s true that Argentina’s politicians have been waging class warfare since Juan and Eva Peron–and they aren’t fazed when it turns bloody. Obama and the Democrats are relative newcomers to the game. But Argentina reveals who really suffers when those who create a nation’s wealth get mugged by those who spend it–as just happened this week in Washington. It’s the poor and the middle class, the very ones big government says it’s trying to protect.”

An Excellent Spirit has been all over this story for months. Here  and here. We have even discussed what the “entitlement culture” will do to a nation spiritually. Here and here. The tragedy is now upon America and the outlook is not good. If Argentina is any indication of what will happen, we must, according to Herman, begin to consider civil war in America in 2013 and beyond. He correctly identifies the problem. It is not, as Mitt Romney foolishly suggested “the 47%”. Herman lays the blame where it should go: on all of us who voted for bigger government. “Since 1970, America’s public sector has exploded as a percentage of GDP, rising to almost 25% last year. While the national unemployment rate hovers at the 8% mark, government worker unemployment rate is a cozy 3.8%. Sixteen percent of America’s workforce now work for government. By the time the Obama administration ends, we won’t be that far away from Argentina’s 21 percent. Yet as an economic and social enterprise, government creates nothing. Far from adding to people’s standard of living, government is the number one cause of poverty in this country. It forces those who depend on its largesse to live hand to mouth, with no time or money to plan for the future. They become unable to fend for themselves—and increasingly resentful of those who can.”

The Heritage Foundation’s Obamacare tax graph for 2013

Who cares, you might ask. America is bigger than Argentina and vastly more wealthy and with trillions in resources. Herman exposes that myth. “When the economy tanks and the government checks have to shrink, their only alternative is to take to the streets. That’s what happening in Argentina, and in Greece; and that’s where the growth of government is taking us here, as this current budget deal increases handouts–and more and more Americans are finding that an unemployment or Social Security disability check is their only life line.” With Obamacare about to kick in and destroy the best health care system in the world and trillions of dollars in new taxes to pay for hundreds of thousands of new government workers who do not know anything about health care, America has embarked on a journey to the kind of hell that Argentina, Greece, France and Spain (to name just a few nations staggering under debt and spending problems) have blazed a path for us to follow. “Washington’s Republicans and Democrats alike have become the toll collectors on the road to serfdom–and the road to Rosario.”

Americans would do well to think, pray and seek God for His Word about what we should do. As we have pointed out before, understanding is not necessarily knowledge, but a knowing of what God says we should know and basing what we do upon that understanding. We have already seen how little those in Congress and the White House understand. The first two actions in 2013 have not set a good trajectory. As Professor Herman says “How far down that road depends on how our private sector rallies in 2013 after two numbing defeats, first on November 7 and then on Capitol Hill this week.”  Herman is right when he says we need “to explain to that 47 percent that when big government wins, we all lose–and that this nation won’t survive if it does.”

Welcome To Hard Times

An Excellent Spirit takes no joy in reporting the so-called resolution to the Fiscal Cliff by Congress and the President. There are no lack of columns and opinions that purport to explain to an exhausted American people the meaning of avoiding what they have never been told about said Fiscal Cliff. In the short term, most Americans have no doubt that, despite President Obama’s claim that the middle class will not pay more; they will pay more and more and more. Here one of our favorite financial columnists, Charles Payne of Townhall Finance put it this way, “Throughout history there have been sharp shifts in small powers and great powers ……….. There will be similar shifts in America as well and it could be predicated not on initial reactions to all of these deals but their ultimate outcomes. The nation needs pro-growth policies not massive spending hidden behind the facade of fairness and false redistribution. 

The poor stay poor although more comfortably so, the middle class watches as its earnings diminish in real life and adjusted for inflation, upper middle class gets hammered cobbled in with Warren Buffett which means fewer jobs, less investing and shattered dreams as rungs from the ladder of success are removed. The loyal opposition owes it to those folks that voted them into office to stand on principle while also making sure the nation doesn’t sink in a cauldron of angst, hate and frustration.” Read Payne’s column here. Thus, despite being told we are saved from the Fiscal Cliff by those we pay to do so, we Americans know that the next crises is on the way and we are it’s target. Can anyone say Spending Limit?

Townhall Finance’s Charles Payne

An Excellent Spirit has written many times of  Victor Davis Hanson Hanson takes a longer perspective than that of the immediate crises in his recent PJ Media piece, 2013: Welcome To Very, Very Scary Times. It is one of his best and we recommend that our readers copy and keep it handy as the days unfold. Hanson notes that while America should be entering a time of robust growth and unchallenged primacy, our own leaders seem to be taking us down another draconian, dreadful path to an uncertain future. Hanson writes, “These should not be foreboding years. The U.S. is in the midst of a veritable energy revolution. There is a godsend of new gas and oil discoveries that will help to curtail our fiscal and foreign policy vulnerabilities — an energy bonanza despite, not because of, the present administration. Demographically, our rivals — the EU, China, Russia, and Japan — are both shrinking and aging at rates far in excess of our own. In terms of farming, the United States is exporting more produce than ever before at record prices. Americans eat the safest and cheapest food on the planet. As far as high-tech gadgetry, the global companies that have most changed the world in recent years — Amazon’s online buying, Google search engines, Apple iPhones, iPads, and Mac laptops — are mostly American. There is a reason why Mexican nationals are not crossing their border into Guatemala — and it is not because they prefer English speakers to Spanish speakers. Militarily, the United States is light years ahead of its rivals. And so on…”

Hanson goes on to chronicle how America stands at the top of the list, seemingly untouchable. “We have redefined poverty itself through government entitlements, modes of mass production and consumerism, and technological breakthroughs. The poor man is not hungry; more likely he suffers from obesity, now endemic among the less affluent. He is not deprived of a big-screen TV, a Kia, warm water, or an air conditioner. (My dad got our first color television during my first year in college in 1972, a small 19 inch portable; I bought my first new car at 39, and quit changing my own oil at 44.) In classical terms, today’s poor man is poor not in relative global terms (e.g. compared to a Russian, Bolivian, or Yemeni), but in the sense that there are those in America who have more things and choices than does he: a BMW instead of a Hyundai, ribeye instead of ground beef, Pellegrino rather than regular Coke, Tuscany in the summer rather than Anaheim at Disneyland, and L.L. Bean tasteful footwear rather than Payless shoes. I was in Manhattan not long ago, and noticed that my cheap, discount-store sportcoat and Target tie did not raise eyebrows among the wealthy people I spoke to, suggesting that the veneer of aristocracy is now within all our reach. When I returned to Selma, I noted that those ahead of me at Super Wal-Mart were clothed no differently than was I. Their EBD cards bought about the same foods. Put all the above developments together, and an alignment of the planets is favoring America as never before — as long as we do not do something stupid to nullify what fate, our ancestors, and our own ingenuity have given us. But unfortunately that is precisely what is now happening.”

Why then are we entering the “worst of times”? Part of the explanation is found in the historic and never-ending battle of ideologies between “the left” and “the right”. In America, “we” are the battleground upon which the ideologies fight and we are, at the same time, the body, the carcass they fight to tear apart for their ends. Hanson sees it well. “These are the most foreboding times in my 59 years. The reelection of Barack Obama has released a surge of rare honesty among the Left about its intentions, coupled with a sense of triumphalism that the country is now on board for still greater redistributionist change. There is no historical appreciation among the new progressive technocracy that central state planning, whether the toxic communist brand or supposedly benevolent socialism, has only left millions of corpses in its wake, or abject poverty and misery. Add up the Soviet Union and Mao’s China and the sum is 80 million murdered or starved to death. Add up North Korea, Cuba, and the former Eastern Europe, and the tally is egalitarian poverty and hopelessness. The EU sacrificed democratic institutions for coerced utopianism and still failed, leaving its Mediterranean shore bankrupt and despondent. Nor is there much philosophical worry that giving people massive subsidies destroys individualism, the work ethic, and the personal sense of accomplishment. There is rarely worry expressed that a profligate nation that borrows from others abroad and those not born has no moral compass. There is scant political appreciation that the materialist Marxist argument — that justice is found only through making sure that everyone has the same slice of stuff from the zero-sum pie — was supposed to end up on the ash heap of history.”

Nor is it simply the re-election of the most Un American President in our history. Barack Obama can only do what we, the people permit him and his Administration and the Congress just elected to do. It is up to us, and we simply do not want to shoulder the load and do anything more. We feel that we did our part. We endured over 10 billion dollars of campaign negativity in our households nightly for over a year. We, especially those poor souls in the so-called “swing states”, made our choice and now we get to live our lives again. Or do we? Unfortunately “elections have consequences” and now come the consequences. Victor Davis Hanson is a thinker and observer of no mean skills. He goes on, “These are the most foreboding times in my 59 years. The reelection of Barack Obama has released a surge of rare honesty among the Left about its intentions, coupled with a sense of triumphalism that the country is now on board for still greater redistributionist change. There is no historical appreciation among the new progressive technocracy that central state planning, whether the toxic communist brand or supposedly benevolent socialism, has only left millions of corpses in its wake, or abject poverty and misery. Add up the Soviet Union and Mao’s China and the sum is 80 million murdered or starved to death. Add up North Korea, Cuba, and the former Eastern Europe, and the tally is egalitarian poverty and hopelessness. The EU sacrificed democratic institutions for coerced utopianism and still failed, leaving its Mediterranean shore bankrupt and despondent. Nor is there much philosophical worry that giving people massive subsidies destroys individualism, the work ethic, and the personal sense of accomplishment. There is rarely worry expressed that a profligate nation that borrows from others abroad and those not born has no moral compass. There is scant political appreciation that the materialist Marxist argument — that justice is found only through making sure that everyone has the same slice of stuff from the zero-sum pie — was supposed to end up on the ash heap of history. That is not conspiracy talk, but simply a distillation of what I read today.”

Then Professor Hanson quotes at length authorities of the Left from across the nation. First from the Des Moines Register. “A journalist, Donald Kaul, in the Des Moines Register offers us a three-step, presto! plan to stop school shootings: Repeal the Second Amendment, the part about guns anyway. It’s badly written, confusing and more trouble than it’s worth. … Declare the NRA a terrorist organization and make membership illegal. Hey! We did it to the Communist Party, and the NRA has led to the deaths of more of us than American Commies ever did. …Then I would tie Mitch McConnell and John Boehner, our esteemed Republican leaders, to the back of a Chevy pickup truck and drag them around a parking lot until they saw the light on gun control. Note the new ease with which the liberal mind calls for trashing the Constitution, outlawing those whom they don’t like (reminiscent of “punish our enemies”?), and killing those politicians with whom they don’t agree (we are back to Bush Derangement Syndrome, when novels, movies, and op-eds dreamed of the president’s assassination.) What would be the Register’s reaction should a conservative opponent of abortion dare write, “Repeal the First Amendment; ban Planned Parenthood as a terrorist organization; and drag Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi from a truck”? If an idiot were to write that trash, I doubt the Washington Times or Wall Street Journal would print such sick calls for overturning the Constitution and committing violence against public officials.” Ah, consequences!

Stanford’s Victor Davis Hanson

The next target of the left is identified and locked on by The New Republic’s John Judis. Hanson tells us, “John Judis, in honest fashion, more or less puts all the progressive cards on the table in a column titled “Obama’s Tax Hikes Won’t Be Nearly Big Enough” — a candor about what the vast $5 trillion deficits of Obama’s first term were all about in the first place. Here is the summation quote: “But to fund these programs, governments will have to extract a share of income from those who are able to afford them and use the revenues to make the services available for everyone.” Note that Judas was not talking about the projected new taxes in the fiscal cliff talks, but something far greater to come. He understands well that the “gorge the beast” philosophy that resulted in these astronomical debts will require enormous new sources of revenue, funds “to extract” from “those who are able to afford them” in order to “make services available for everyone.” That is about as neat a definition of coerced socialism as one can find. Implicit in Judas’s formulation is that only a very well-educated (and well-compensated) technocratic class will possess the wisdom, the proper schooling, and the morality to adjudicate who are to be the extracted ones and who the new “everyone.” That says it all, except to know whether Hanson’s reference to Judis as “Judas” was intentional. The betting here says it was. Tired of those consequences? Hanson has one more and it is a doozy!

Target Zero is the Constitution of the United States of America, that document, over 225 years old that has been the protector of the freedoms of every American and every immigrant who has come to enjoy “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”. The problem seems to be, as Hanson says, that “we” are no longer sure what all that means, except to say, “we voted! Now leave us alone!” Hanson continues, “The third item in my year-end reading was the most disturbing. A law professor (could it be otherwise?) named Louis Michael Seidman enlightens us with “Let’s Give Up on the Constitution” — yet another vision of what the now triumphant liberal mind envisions for us all: As the nation teeters at the edge of fiscal chaos, observers are reaching the conclusion that the American system of government is broken. But almost no one blames the culprit: our insistence on obedience to the Constitution, with all its archaic, idiosyncratic and downright evil provisions. Did Madison force Obama to borrow a half-billion dollars to fund Solyndra and its multimillionaire con artists? Note Seidman’s use of “evil,” which tips his hand that our great moralist is on an ethical crusade to change the lives of lesser folk, who had the misfortune of growing up in America — a place so much less prosperous, fair, and secure than, say, Russia, China, the Middle East, Africa, South America, Spain, Greece, Italy, or Japan and Germany (in the earlier 20th century history) . When I lived in Greece, traveled to Libya, and went into Mexico, I forgot to sigh, “My God, these utopias are possible for us too, if we just junked that evil Constitution.” The non-archaic, un-idiosyncratic, and anti-downright evil Professor Seidman presses his argument against his inferiors who wrote the “evil” document: “Instead of arguing about what is to be done, we argue about what James Madison might have wanted done 225 years ago.” Ah yes, old white male Madison, who lacked the insight, character, and morality of our new liberal technocrats in our successful law schools, such as, well, Mr. Seidman himself: As someone who has taught constitutional law for almost 40 years, I am ashamed it took me so long to see how bizarre all this is. Imagine that after careful study a government official —  say, the president or one of the party leaders in Congress  –  reaches a considered judgment that a particular course of action is best for the country. Suddenly, someone bursts into the room with new information: a group of white propertied men who have been dead for two centuries, knew nothing of our present situation, acted illegally under existing law and thought it was fine to own slaves might have disagreed with this course of action. Is it even remotely rational that the official should change his or her mind because of this divination? I suppose human nature changes every decade or so, so why shouldn’t constitutions as well? I can see Seidman’s vision now: Harry Reid or Nancy Pelosi decides that semi-automatic handguns, not cheap Hollywood violence or sick video games, empower the insane to kill, and, presto, their “considered judgment” and favored “particular course of action” trump the archaic and evil wisdom of “white propertied men.”  But if we wish to avoid the baleful influence of white guys, can Seidman point to indigenous Aztec texts for liberal guidance, or perhaps the contemporary constitution of liberated Zimbabwe, or the sagacity of the Chinese court system? Note the fox-in-the-henhouse notion that a constitutional law professor essentially hates the Constitution he is supposed to teach, sort of like Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg warning the Egyptians not to follow our own constitutional example, when South Africa has offered so much more to humanity than did Madison, Hamilton, Jefferson, and others: “I would not look to the U.S. Constitution, if I were drafting a constitution in the year 2012. I might look at the constitution of South Africa.”  Ginsburg obviously vacations in Johannesburg, goes to Cape Town for her medical treatment, and has a vacation home and bank account in the scenic South African countryside. Seidman looks fondly on Roosevelt’s war against the Constitution (especially the notion that law is essentially what an elected president who has proper “aspirations” says it is): In his Constitution Day speech in 1937, Franklin D. Roosevelt professed devotion to the document, but as a statement of aspirations rather than obligations. This reading no doubt contributed to his willingness to extend federal power beyond anything the framers imagined, and to threaten the Supreme Court when it stood in the way of his New Deal legislation. No doubt.”

There it is: The Trifecta of the Left. Get rid of the guns so that only we say who can have them. Tax everyone into submission to the Government and get them to like it by giving them “stuff”(There are no jobs, anyway). Finally, since we do not tolerate any more interference from anyone, get rid of the Constitution. Without that document, in a very short time, Americans will be like everyone else: beholden to the powerful for their lives, having no rights guaranteed to them by an antiquated document and living in fear of those who have the guns that we allowed them to take away.

That is what Hanson dreads most. Reading his fellow academician, Seidman, he goes on, “In the age of Obama, the constitutional law lecturer who once lamented that the Supreme Court had not gone far enough by failing to take up questions of forced redistribution, Seidman writes: In the face of this long history of disobedience, it is hard to take seriously the claim by the Constitution’s defenders that we would be reduced to a Hobbesian state of nature if we asserted our freedom from this ancient text. Our sometimes flagrant disregard of the Constitution has not produced chaos or totalitarianism; on the contrary, it has helped us to grow and prosper. But I thought it was the Constitution, not the anti-Constitution or egalitarian good will, that separated us from Hitler’s Germany, Mussolini’s Italy, Tojo’s Japan, Stalin’s Soviet Union, Mao’s China, and most of the miserable places that one sees abroad today, from Cuba to North Korea, which all had and have one thing in common — the embrace of some sort of national, republican, or democratic “socialism” guiding their efforts and plastered about in their sick mottoes. The progressive mind, given that it is more enlightened and moral, alone can determine which parts of the “evil” Constitution should be summarily ignored (e.g., the Second Amendment) and which should not be: “This is not to say that we should disobey all constitutional commands. Freedom of speech and religion, equal protection of the laws and protections against governmental deprivation of life, liberty or property are important, whether or not they are in the Constitution. We should continue to follow those requirements out of respect, not obligation.” Emphasis ours.

Careful, America! As Victor Davis Hanson notes, we are entering the worst times of the Republic, to date. “I am sure that history offers all sorts of examples where people without evil documents like our Constitution protected free speech and religious worship — out of “respect.”  Ask Socrates, Jesus, six million Jews, 20 million Russians, or those with eyeglasses during the days of the Khmer Rouge. Apparently, what stops such carnage is not the rule of constitutional law, but good progressive minds who care for others and show respect. I’ll try that rhetoric on the next thief who for the fourth time will steal the copper wire conduit from my pump. So just dream with Professor Seidman: ”The deep-seated fear that such disobedience would unravel our social fabric is mere superstition. As we have seen, the country has successfully survived numerous examples of constitutional infidelity…What has preserved our political stability is not a poetic piece of parchment, but entrenched institutions and habits of thought and, most important, the sense that we are one nation and must work out our differences. No one can predict in detail what our system of government would look like if we freed ourselves from the shackles of constitutional obligation, and I harbor no illusions that any of this will happen soon. But even if we can’t kick our constitutional-law addiction, we can soften the habit… before abandoning our heritage of self-government, we ought to try extricating ourselves from constitutional bondage so that we can give real freedom a chance.”

Game, set, match! End of Republic. End of Constitution. End of nation of laws. Beginning of despair, pandemic poverty for those with no voice and the rule of the gun for everyone who does not have one. As Victor Davis Hanson writes, “I have seen their future and it is almost here right now. Scary times, indeed.”

It is a lot to digest, America, but either digest it and pray about it and ask God what to do or be consumed by the works that those who do not know or love God will most certainly perpetrate upon everyone that is under their guns. God bless America!

Benghazi – Did It Ever Happen?

U. S. Consulate in Benghazi Libya under attack on September 11, 2012

An Excellent Spirit has followed the events that took place in Benghazi, Libya on September 11th, 2012 when a United States “Consulate” was bombed, fired upon and set ablaze and the U. S. Ambassador to Libya and three American soldiers assigned as security to the Ambassador were murdered. Go here and here for a complete round up of the stories that An Excellent Spirit has carried to date.

Now that the Election is over and the New Year has begun, Americans still do not know what happened in Libya on September 11th. The families of those murdered still have no explanation of why their loved ones died in the service of the United States of America. The President has promised to bring those who perpetrated the murders to justice and Congress has promised a full investigation to inform the American people. Little or nothing has been done to date.

General David Patraeus, CIA Director, resigned on November 9th 2012 after a scandal about his personal life was made public. He met with US Senators thereafter. Here  He testified before Congress on November 16th about Benghazi and his opinion that it was the result of terrorism, but the testimony was behind closed doors and sealed to keep secret the facts from our enemies and the American people from knowing what happened. That all was by Thanksgiving, last year.

4 Star General David Petraeus, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency

The Holidays are over and the New Year begun and still little has been revealed. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has suffered a concussion and other injuries that prevent her, all these months later, from giving testimony. Republicans in the US Senate quite correctly have signaled that they will not vote to confirm her successor, US Senator John Kerry, unless and until Clinton gives that testimony. Brietbart has this story that a report lays the blame squarely at the feet of the State Department Clinton heads. “WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The State Department made a “grievous mistake” in keeping the U.S. mission in Benghazi open despite inadequate security and increasingly alarming threat assessments in the weeks before a deadly attack by militants, a Senate committee said on Monday. A report from the Senate Homeland Security Committee on the September 11 attacks on the U.S. mission and a nearby CIA annex, in which the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans died, faulted intelligence agencies for not focusing tightly enough on Libyan extremists. It also faulted the State Department for waiting for specific warnings instead of improving security. The committee’s assessment, “Flashing Red: A Special Report On The Terrorist Attack At Benghazi,” follows a scathing report by an independent State Department accountability review board that resulted in a top security official resigning and three others at the department being relieved of their duties.” Read the whole Brietbart story and learn how little we know and how much the President and Congress are doing to assure that we never learn the truth. Oh. yes. Hillary Clinton has been released from the hospital in New York, but with a new Congress about to be sworn in, a re-elected President who cared little for reveling his part in the Benghazi attack and aftermath and the families of the dead 2 Americans that much further from their grief and agony, what do you think the chances are that the promised investigation will ever take place?

The facts remain. Four US State Department officials died. A US Consular compound in Libya was over run by Al Qaeda terrorists and weapons stolen from that compound. The President and his advisors were provided with “real time” video of the attack that lasted over 7 hours and watched in the White House and State Department and at the CIA and other locations while our people were murdered.

The President of the United States, running for re-election, told the media that he gave orders that everything be done to secure our people within minutes of finding out of the attack. This October 26, 2012 story, by White House correspondent Jake Tapper details the President’s “orders”. “President Obama Begs Off Answering Whether Americans in Benghazi Were Denied Requests for Help”  In an interview with a Denver TV reporter Friday, President Obama twice refused to answer questions as to whether the Americans under siege in Benghazi, Libya on September 11, 2012, were denied requests for help, saying he’s waiting for the results of investigations before making any conclusions about what went wrong. After being asked about possible denials of requests for aid, and whether it’s fair to tell Americans that what happened is under investigation and won’t be released until after the election, the president said, “the election has nothing to do with four brave Americans getting killed and us wanting to find out exactly what happened. These are folks who served under me who I had sent to some very dangerous places. Nobody wants to find out more what happened than I do.” President Obama told KUSA-TV’s Kyle Clarke large that “we want to make sure we get it right, particularly because I have made a commitment to the families impacted as well as to the American people, we’re going to bring those folks to justice. So, we’re going to gather all the facts, find out exactly what happened, and make sure that it doesn’t happen again but we’re also going to make sure that we bring to justice those who carried out these attacks.” Clark pressed again. “Were they denied requests for help during the attack?” he asked.

“Well, we are finding out exactly what happened,” the president again said. “I can tell you, as I’ve said over the last couple of months since this happened, the minute I found out what was happening, I gave three very clear directives. Number one, make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to. Number two, we’re going to investigate exactly what happened so that it doesn’t happen again. Number three, find out who did this so we can bring them to justice. And I guarantee you that everyone in the state department, our military, the CIA, you name it, had number one priority making sure that people were safe. These were our folks and we’re going to find out exactly what happened, but what we’re also going to do it make sure that we are identifying those who carried out these terrible attacks.” Here is one of but a few videos of President Obama responding to questions about what he did following the Benghazi attack. These videos of the President clearly saying that he gave instructions (orders?) about the Benghazi attack upon learning of it are irrefutable evidence that President Obama’s as President and Commander in Chief of US military forces, gave “very clear directives” to secure our people.

There is also much that calls those statements into question. An Excellent Spirit wrote about this story by Matt Bracken, a retired SEAL that appeared in PJ Media. In our story, we referenced Bracken’s authoritative piece and the stunning information it contained. It seems to contradict the President’s words about “orders”. “The Benghazi debacle boils down to a single key factor — the granting or withholding of “cross-border authority.” This opinion is informed by my experience as a Navy SEAL officer who took a NavSpecWar Detachment to Beirut. Once the alarm is sent  – in this case, from the consulate in Benghazi — dozens of HQs are notified and are in the planning loop in real time, including AFRICOM and EURCOM, both located in Germany. Without waiting for specific orders from Washington, they begin planning and executing rescue operations, including moving personnel, ships, and aircraft forward toward the location of the crisis. However, there is one thing they can’t do without explicit orders from the president: cross an international border on a hostile mission.”

Former SEAL and author Matthew J. Bracken

An Excellent Spirit has had some contact with the author, Matt Bracken, and believes this hero has it right. All the way. But there is more. Once the attack was known by the President and his team on the night of September 11th, a few even more curious events took place that have never been explained or investigated, to our knowledge. We refer to the relieving of commands of two senior U. S. flag rank commanders who were on active duty and were in the process of coming to the aid of our Libyan people early in the 7 hour massacre.  The Washington Times reported that General Jack Ham, the commander of AFRICOM, the US military command for the Libyan region, was summarily relieved of his command because he was in the process of going to the aid of those in Libya in time to do them some good. Here The information I heard today was that General Ham as head of Africom received the same e-mails the White House received requesting help/support as the attack was taking place. General Ham immediately had a rapid response unit ready and communicated to the Pentagon that he had a unit ready. 

General Ham then received the order to stand down. His response was to screw it, he was going to help anyhow. Within 30 seconds to a minute after making the move to respond, his second in command apprehended General Ham and told him that he was now relieved of his command. 

The story continues that now General Rodiguez would take General Ham’s place as the head of Africom.  This version of events contradicts Mr. Panetta’s October 25 statement that General Ham advised against intervention. But so far there is nothing solid to back it up. Maybe Ham attempted to send a reaction force against orders, or maybe he simply said the wrong thing to the wrong people. Perhaps he gave whomever he was talking to up the chain a piece of his mind about leaving Americans to die when there was a chance of saving them. At the very least U.S. forces might have made those who killed our people pay while they were still on the scene. The Obama White House is famously vindictive against perceived disloyalty – the administration would not let Ham get away with scolding them for failing to show the leadership necessary to save American lives. The Army’s ethos is to leave no man behind, but that is not shared by a president accustomed to leading from that location. The question remains why the repeated requests – which is to say desperate pleas – to send a relief force were refused. Perhaps Mr. Obama and his national security brain trust thought the terrorist assault would be a minor skirmish and quickly blow over. When it became clear that the attack was something more serious, they may have had visions of the rescue team getting involved in a Mogadishu-like firefight, a “Blackhawk Down 2.” This would have been too much for the risk-averse Mr. Obama, particularly in a Muslim country, and less than two months before the election. Instead they simply watched the live video hoped for the best. If there were American fatalities, they felt they could shift blame for the circumstance to the supposed Youtube video which they had already blamed for the riot at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo hours earlier. In fact the Embassy had sent out its “apology” tweets even before the Cairo riot commenced.”

Four Star U.S. General Carter Ham, Ret. Deposed AFRICOM commander over Benghazi Murders Response

It gets even “curiouser”.  An Excellent Spirit covered this story of the relief of Admiral Gaouette of his command. This strange incident even had some vague hints suggesting this naval hero had been mutinous against the President. Here There have been few follow up articles on either of these two commanders being replaced, so we do not know what actually happened. It is just part of the intentional confusion and obfuscation being systematically conducted by our government and the lamestream media. Still the American people have no facts or information being provided. How are we to understand what happened if no one testifies, no one follows stories up and no one gives answers to the questions that already linger?

America is in trouble. Things are going boom in the night and no one is doing anything about it. Worse, what is being done is to sweep everything under the rug as quickly as possible. The two main actors are our own government (the “most transparent” in our history) and the lamestream media, the see nothing, print nothing, know nothing media that is losing readers and watchers by the millions as “we” get what news we can from the Internet. Stay tuned. Maybe someday Hillary Clinton will recover and testify. Maybe someone will explain how two flag commanders were relieved and why. Maybe someone will get a copy of President Obama’s order to secure our folks. Maybe. But maybe not. My Grandmother used to say, “if wishes were horses, beggars would ride.”

America is beginning to look like a beggar nation. God forbid!

A people who are in the dark as “we” are cannot expect to know the truth, get understanding or operate as those who understand the times and know what to do. It is up to the Body of Christ in America to lead the way back from darkness and ignorance by praying and by doing what God intended for each of us to do. That certainly must include becoming informed, involved and speaking up and speaking out. Think about it, America. Think about it. Christian. Then do something! Before it is too late. Benghazi is a tragedy that explains more than we think. It shows how deceived we are, not knowing what our government is doing. How helpless we are, not deserving of the truth or anything approaching the truth, such as a few facts here and there about our concerns. It shows how corrupt we have become when senior flag commanders are relieved on duty and seemingly disappear from our radar, never to be heard from or about again. It shows how useless Congress is, demanding facts, threatening investigations, receiving who know what behind closed doors and telling the American people that there will be more, only to fall silent and clueless upon the New Year.

It is time for Americans who know God and are disciples of Jesus Christ to act like it. We must pray about all this. We must hear from God what He wants each of us individually and all of us collectively, filled as we are with His Spirit of Truth, to do. We must pray with one another and plan to take action right where we are, in our neighborhoods, cities, counties and states. Begin with small actions. God’s Word tells us we are not to despise the day of small beginnings because “it is not by might, nor power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of Hosts.” (Zechariah 4:6, NKJV) The Word of God is awesome and it is completely and utterly able to accomplish what God intends for it and for us, when we act upon His Word, to accomplish. God is telling all of us that what is ahead may be daunting and the forces behind evil may be strong, but are not to oppose them by “might” (our own strength, guile and knowledge), nor power (guns, weapons of war and armies of men) but by God’s Spirit (The Holy Spirit, our comforter, guide, revelator of God’s truth to His people). Zechariah 4:6-b says, “the Lord of Hosts”. This designation is throughout the Bible. It means God, the Lord of Armies and Battles vastly greater than anything man has ever created. God’s “army” is “us”! We are those upon whom the God of Hosts, Armies and Battles will confer His Great Strength, but only if we enlist in His Army by showing up, ready for war and prayed up and pressed in for the battle that God will win for us. God told Zerubbabel that the “great mountain” would become a plain and that the hands of men and women of God (you and me) had laid the foundation of God’s Temple on Earth and would finish that Temple of God’s Habitation on the Earth!

2013. The “day of small beginnings”. Benghazi and the scandal that is yet uncovered may offer one of the “small beginnings”, but only to those who know that the battle is the Lord’s. Stay tuned. Stay alert and stay connected to God and one another. God bless America.

2013 – A Look Ahead

An Excellent Spirit looks at the year ahead on this first day of 2013 by doing one of our favorite, most informative things: reading Thomas Sowell. In this Townhall column (it is also posted in Jewish World Review and on other sites), Sowell looks at what is ahead for America. He begins by looking back at the recent Election. Here “The beginning of a new year is often a time to look forward and look back. The way the future looks, I prefer to look back — and depend on my advanced age to spare me from having to deal with too much of the future. If there are any awards to be given to anyone for what they did in 2012, one of those rewards should be for prophecy, if only because prophecies that turn out to be right are so rare. With that in mind, my choice for the prediction of the year award goes to Bret Stephens of the Wall Street Journal for his column of January 24, 2012 titled: “The GOP Deserves to Lose.” Despite reciting a litany of reasons why President Obama deserved to be booted out of the White House, Stephens said, “Let’s just say right now what voters will be saying in November, once Barack Obama has been re-elected: Republicans deserve to lose.” To me, the Republican establishment is the 8th wonder of the world. How they can keep repeating the same mistakes for decades on end is beyond my ability to explain.”

An Excellent Spirit has written much about this modern day phenomena. HereHere, Here  and Here  Please re-read these at your convenience.  Professor Sowell brings another, historical perspective to all this speculation about what is to come. “Bret Stephens said, back at the beginning of 2012, that Mitt Romney was one of the ‘hollow men,’ and that voters ‘usually prefer the man who stands for something.’ Yet this is not just about Mitt Romney. He is only the latest in a long series of presidential candidates backed by a Republican establishment that seems convinced that ad hoc ‘moderation’ is where it’s at — no matter how many of their ad hoc moderates get beaten by even vulnerable, unknown or discredited Democrats. Back in 1948, when the Democratic Party splintered into three parties, each one with its own competing presidential candidate, Republican candidate Thomas E. Dewey was considered a shoo-in. Best-selling author David Halberstam described what happened: ‘Dewey’s chief campaign tactic was to make no mistakes, to offend no one. His major speeches, wrote the Louisville Courier Journal, could be boiled down ‘to these historic four sentences: Agriculture is important. Our rivers are full of fish. You cannot have freedom without liberty. The future lies ahead…’ Does this sound like a more recent Republican presidential candidate? Meanwhile, President Harry Truman was on the attack in 1948, with speeches that had many people saying, ‘Give ’em hell, Harry.’ He won, even with the Democrats’ vote split three ways. But, to this day, the Republican establishment still goes for pragmatic moderates who feed pablum to the public, instead of treating them like adults. It is not just Republican presidential candidates who cannot be bothered to articulate a coherent argument, instead of ad hoc talking points. Have you yet heard House Speaker John Boehner take the time to spell out why Barack Obama’s argument for taxing ‘millionaires and billionaires’ is wrong? It is not a complicated argument. Moreover, it is an argument that has been articulated many times in plain English by conservative talk show hosts and by others in print. It has nothing to do with being worried about the fate of millionaires or billionaires, who can undoubtedly take care of themselves.”

The fact that Thomas Sowell is one of the pre-eminent economists in America should cause a shiver or two to go down our collective spines, especially as Professor Sowell continues, “ What we all should be worried about are high tax rates driving American investments overseas, when there are millions of Americans who could use the jobs that those investments would create at home. Yet Obama has been allowed to get away with the emotional argument that the rich can easily afford to pay more, as if that is the issue.” Indeed Sowell is correct. It will be the issue because most Americans either do not know about it. Our lamestream media only reports issues and events that they deem “us” competent to understand.

Then, each American must realize that “we” are surrounded by “them”. What is “them”? A better question is “who are “they”? “They” are the large poly-political, academia, media and intelligentsia cabal. “They” simply do not want “us” to know, think about or understand what “they” are up to. Therefore, Professor Sowell is one hundred per cent right to conclude: “But it will be the issue if no one says otherwise. One of the recent sad reminders of the Republicans’ tendency to leave even lies and smears unanswered was a television replay of an old interview with the late Judge Robert Bork, whose nomination to the Supreme Court was destroyed by character assassination. Judge Bork said that he was advised not to answer Ted Kennedy’s wild accusations because those false accusations would discredit themselves. That supposedly sophisticated advice cost the country one of the great legal minds of our time — and left us with a wavering Anthony Kennedy in his place on the Supreme Court. Some people may take solace from the fact that there are some articulate Republicans like Marco Rubio who may come forward in 2016. But with Iran going nuclear and North Korea developing missiles that can hit California, it may be too late by then.”

It is really sad to read that a brilliant mind like Thomas Sowell has concluded that it may be too late for Americans to do anything about what is about to happen to us, our children, our grandchildren, and if we survive all that, whatever comes next. An Excellent Spirit was dedicated to informing the Body of Christ and all Americans of just these dangers. Sadly, to date, our efforts have had little success. We will keep at it. If America is brought down, it is hard to understand what possibly will follow. With the terror, Islamofacist’s nuclear intentions, economic winter for all but a few of the cronies of those in power and unthinkable cyber warfare and electro magnetic pulse technology loosed upon the innocent and weak, a reality of the near future, what the world faces is worst than all the past horrors combined.

An Excellent Spirit knows that men are incredibly wicked in their intentions and actions. In the time of the prophet Jeremiah, the Lord sent Jeremiah to Israel and Judah to make one last attempt to turn them from their wickedness and the coming calamities. He told Jeremiah that men were inherently evil without a secure connection to the God who had created them: “The heart is deceitful above all things,
and desperately wicked;
who can know it? I, the Lord, search the heart,
I test the mind,
even to give every man according to his ways,
according to the fruit of his doings.” America must pray! America must repent! America must worship a good, merciful, loving God! That is our alternative. It is our only hope. An Excellent Spirit joins Thomas Sowell in looking ahead to a future that is in our hands if we do what God wants us to do. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10 The King James version says that God “before ordained” good works for each person to do before He created us!

It is helpful to read the old King James version as it enables a visceral understanding of God’s Word. Ephesians 2 begins by Paul addressing the Ephesians about their origins. He tells them that they, prior to knowing God and accepting Jesus as their Lord and Savior,  And you hath He quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.” These Ephesians, were dead in their sins; having no knowledge of the God who created them. They were dead because of the works, the deeds they did as disobedient children.

Then Paul tells them (and us) But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: that in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.” Each of us is, therefore a child whom God has redeemed from the death of our sins, and raised each one of us up and seated each one of us in heavenly places together with Christ Jesus who sits at God’s Right Hand so God can reveal to each of us throughout the ages to come His exceeding rich grace and kindnesses. Wow! That is a wonderful promise to all of us!

But God is not through with the good promises to us. Our Father goes on to tell each one of us: “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” This is the key scripture. You and I, everyone who is a disciple of Jesus Christ; everyone who acknowledges God, the Father as Creator, God and Father; we are, in this new, improved state, His workmanship. We are “created” (spiritually re-created) in Christ Jesus unto good works which God, before we were created, born or “re-created”, ordained for each one of us to do and walk in.

This is where is gets tough. If Americans have only a passing acquaintance with God or His Son, Jesus, how are “we” to know what we are supposed to do? We Christians are the worst offenders, supposedly knowing God, yet clearly not knowing the good works that God, before He created us, “before ordained” for us to do and walk in them.  How can we say that? Ask Thomas Sowell. Ask yourself. What am I supposed to do so that America will be a righteous nation and exalted by God?

An Excellent Spirit begins 2013 by asking ourselves and our readers, what are you and we created in Christ to do? We know that “faith without works is dead” (James 2:14-26) so we understand that there is some doing involved here. Doing means understanding what we are to do. Understanding means asking God, seeking His Word and hearing from Him what acts and actions we were created to do. It would help to read the entire passage of James about this critical subject as we begin 2013 and ask God, what is it that You want me to do in 2013?

Stay tuned. We will be back with more tomorrow. God bless America. God bless us, everyone.

 

 

Happy New Year – 2013!

An Excellent Spirit returns after a two-week hiatus to wish our readers a Happy, Blessed, Prosperous and Peaceful New Year. We do so sadly, knowing as we do that 2013 promises to bring America and the world few of the desirable qualities of peace, prosperity and life, given how 2012 is ending. The recent Election has done tragically little to resolve the polarization and the class warfare we experience daily. The so called Fiscal Cliff has produced yet another deal that kicks America’s can farther down the road into our grandchildren’s future. Here Those in Congress and our re-elected President have shown the world that they are interested only in their prosperity and not ours. The post Election climate has given almost no hope that issues like Benghazi, Iran’s march to acquire a nuclear weapon, the threat of cyber warfare or an Electro Magnetic Pulse induced nuclear winter can be met by America, much less the confused world we live in. America cannot even solve our debt and spending problems.

That is why we often turn to humor. God’s Word tells us that “A merry heart maketh like a medicine”. Proverbs 17:22 continues, “but a crushed spirit dries the bones”. We Americans have yet to realize that the Washington tango will do little more than dry America’s financial bones, so humor is all we have left to pass the time we have left before the bill comes due. This Jewish World Review piece by Deborah J. Saunders paraphrasing our beloved “national pastime” gives a hint of what we mean. It deals with the Romney campaign’s dashed hopes for a better future.

After reviewing the political year in a parody of “Casey At The Bat” Saunders concludes,

“Oh, somewhere in this welfare state, large crowds are having fun.

John Boehner isn’t crying as Obama crows, “I won.”

He’s racing toward the fiscal cliff — while voters scream and shout.

What D.C. pol can break the fall? Mitt Romney has struck out.”

At best, Ms. Saunders’ parody is an indication of the troubles America faces in 2013 and beyond. At worst, it is a chilling prophesy that our real problem is that few Americans really know what we face and still fewer Americans show signs of caring as we begin 2013.

An Excellent Spirit has taken the time to seek the Lord for His wisdom and His will for us in 2013. It gives us no joy whatsoever to report the ominous news that is everywhere we look as 2012 ends. We would prefer parody, but we lack the talent of Ms, Saunders, so we begin our tour of American prospects entering 2013 with the Fiscal Cliff. The deal that was struck hours ago proves that no one in our government has a shred of intention of taking any of the many necessary steps our government must take to prevent America from becoming a debtor nation, vulnerable to the predatory vultures to which all debtors are prey. We go from there to the Middle East where Israel, increasingly isolated by American foreign policies, could trigger Armageddon, as the only option it may have to being “wiped off the map”. From there try to get your head around the increasing violence in America as hundreds of children are killed, maimed and forever traumatized in Connecticut, even as our “just and humane” society prepares to kill another million or so children in the womb in 2013.

Fortunately, An Excellent Spirit has access to observers and sources much wiser than we. Thomas Sowell. has this latest Random Thoughts in Jewish World Review. Professor Sowell covers a few more items that do not bode well for America’s future. “The more I study the history of intellectuals, the more they seem like a wrecking crew, dismantling civilization bit by bit — replacing what works with what sounds good. Some people are wondering what takes so long for the negotiations about the “fiscal cliff.” Maybe both sides are waiting for supplies. Democrats may be waiting for more cans to kick down the road. Republicans may be waiting for more white flags to hold up in surrender.”

Professor Sowell a brilliant economist makes a point that no one else seems to be making: “Everybody is talking about how we are going to pay for the huge national debt, but nobody seems to be talking about the runaway spending which created that record-breaking debt. In other words, the big spenders get political benefits from handing out goodies, while those who resist giving them more money to spend will be blamed for sending the country off the “fiscal cliff.”

Finally, Sowell who is a great thinker and writer, takes on foreign policy and Israel, as an Angel going where fools tread with impunity, “When Barack Obama refused to agree to a requested meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu — the leader of a country publicly and repeatedly threatened with annihilation by Iran’s leaders, as the Iranians move toward creating nuclear bombs — I thought of a line from the old movie classic “Citizen Kane”: “Charlie wasn’t cruel. He just did cruel things.” Read the whole thing. Here

Maybe it is because Americans no longer are paying attention. Perhaps analogies like Sowell’s to “Citizen Kane” and Saunders’ to “Casey at the Bat” are no longer relevant in a culture that has gone from being the world leader in educating our children to 18th or 20th. Maybe we, the People, have become so complacent and “entitled” that we no longer value liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We clearly do not value life, unless it is our own and no one else’s.

In the hiatus we have had since mid December, An Excellent Spirit has searched our hearts, minds and spirits for a positive sign that America would prosper and it’s people could rejoice in a nation that God Almighty exalts because of our righteousness. We have found little upon which to hang our hats in the news, the goings on in our nation’s capitol or the condition of the world. The only thing we can point to is But God!

Psalm 2 asks a question that men have asked for ages. Why do the nations rage,
and the people plot a vain thing? (Psalm 2:1) The Psalm continues, The kings of the earth set themselves,
and the rulers take counsel together,
against the Lord and against His Anointed, saying,“Let us break Their bonds in pieces
 and cast away Their cords from us.” Reading Thomas Sowell is a lot like reading this Psalm. Professor Sowell knows that there is wisdom against which no prevarication nor denial will prevail. It is God’s wisdom in His Word. Psalm 2 continues:

“He who sits in the heavens shall laugh;
the Lord shall hold them in derision. Then He shall speak to them in His wrath,
and distress them in His deep displeasure: “Yet I have set My King
on My holy hill of Zion.”

 “I will declare the decree:
the Lord has said to Me,
‘You are My Son,
today I have begotten You. Ask of Me, and I will give You
 the nations for Your inheritance,
and the ends of the earth for Your possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron;
 You shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel.’”

An Excellent Spirit has diligently looked and we have not liked what we have seen. It is as if the whole earth, even those in our churches, temples and mosques deny the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and His Son Jesus, and fail to heed His instruction to all of us:

Now therefore, be wise, O kings; 
be instructed, you judges of the earth. Serve the Lord with fear,
 and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest He be angry,
 and you perish in the way,
 when His wrath is kindled but a little. 
Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.” Emphasis ours.

We, at An Excellent Spirit pray for, wish and hope for a Happy 2013, a year that is blessed by the Most High God. We have faith in our God, in His Son our Savior, in His Holy Spirit, our Comforter and Guide and in His people who seek His Peace on Earth as it is in Heaven. Our families and our children and grandchildren can only be blessed by Our God Who blesses not by man nor government nor institution, but by His Grace, Mercy and Love!

As Aaron prayed for Israel, we pray for God’s people in America and in the world over:

The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you His Peace”  (Numbers 6:24-26)

Shalom, brothers and sisters and let us all Bless the God who blesses America! Happy 2013!

America and The Spirit of Death – An Excellent Spirit Editorial

Mother running to safety with her children in Newtown at Sandy Lake Elementary School

In the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut massacre that killed 20 innocent school children at the Sandy Lake Elementary School and six adults as well as the shooter, An Excellent Spirit is publishing this article on the Spirit of Death that is building in America. We began writing it two months ago and have been waiting for the Lord to release us to publish it. The time is now, unfortunately. We strongly recommend that our readers pray for the people of Newtown, Connecticut and for the people of America. The only remedy we know with which we can begin to deal with the terrible fear and emotions from events like these is to pray. Few of us know how those in Newtown feel and are coping with this tragedy. But we can pray to our God!

The Excellent Wife, in one of our recent conversations said, “America is living under a Spirit of Death”. Whenever The Excellent Wife speaks, we listen. Years ago, we heard from The Holy Spirit when, in exasperation, we complained to God, “why do You always talk to her and never to me?” God’s answer, like the answer of lot of men receive was, “I always talk more to those who listen than to those who do not. She listens. You do not. You are too busy doing and complaining to listen.”  Since then, when The Excellent Wife talks, we  listen.

When tragedy strikes America on a major scale, we are apt to look for reasons to help us understand and cope with it. We want to put it behind us as fast as possible and get back to our lives. Thus, there is the initial spate of stories, causes, culprits and details followed by silence. It is in that silence that the Spirit of Death finds permission to operate again and again. When 20 young elementary school children are killed, their lives snuffed out long before God intended, we must ask: exactly what is a Spirit of Death? We turned to 4God.net for answers. “The Spirit of Death seems to be one that we hear very little about, but one that is nevertheless, very active in the demise of people, both Christian and non-Christian. This spirit’s greatest weapon is in his lack of recognition. In other words, the Spirit of Death is able to go around destroying lives, for the most part unchallenged, simply because people overlook him.” Emphasis ours. The article is interesting and informative, to say the least. Read the whole thing here.

The Spirit of Death – Artist Rendering

Many Americans would ask, “How do we know? How can we recognize this spirit?” Many would deny its existence altogether, preferring to avoid the whole subject. The facts, however, provide more than enough tangible, competent evidence of the truth of what The Excellent Wife said. The horrible and tragic events of Newtown were easily recognizable as coming from this Spirit of Death. Last September’s Libyan Embassy murders were not simply a response to a policy and certainly were not motivated by a movie trailer no one over in Libya had seen. They were part and parcel of the works of a Spirit of Death. The planes that destroyed the World Trade Center on 9-11 and took almost 3000 lives were piloted by Islamofanatics that clearly were operating under a sinister, evil spirit of Death. The list goes on and on and we can debate it, but we cannot deny that there is ample proof that we are being attacked by a spirit of death. “This spirit is a single identity, so is not omnipresent as is God, but he is a leader in charge of many other spirits. He has under his command other spirits such as sickness, despair, suicide, torment, murder, and a whole host of others. The good news is that all of these spirits, including Death, are subject to the Name of Jesus!” Emphasis ours.

Agent leading children to safety in Newtown on day of massacre.

One such spirit is certainly a spirit of lying. “We” certainly know about that one. Our government, the lamestream media and a host of other sources have driven Americans to presume that “we” are being systematically lied to! “We” have even started to do “their” job of finding facts and truth for “ourselves”. An Excellent Spirit has provided our readers with some help in this. Here

In order to break the Spirit of Death, “we” must first acknowledge it is operating and then “call upon the Name of The Lord” because, “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; (Philippians 2:10) Jesus repeatedly confronted demonic spirits and vanquished them, every time! He has given “us” (His disciples) authority to defeat every spirit that is not His! The way this actually works is explained here. America does not have to remain the victim of a spirit of death. Jesus said, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10) The tragic, horrible deaths of our children that happened in Newtown and before that at Virginia Tech (2010) and Columbine, Colorado (2008) are not unconnected. We are always reminded of the movie Caddyshack http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caddyshack when considering how the spirits work. In that movie, the country club groundskeeper (played hilariously by Bill Murray) was fighting against gophers that were eating up his golf course. The movie showed that on the surface it looked like there were many holes each unconnected to the other, but beneath the surface it showed that they were all connected by a series of tunnels. This is how the spirits work to confuse and confound us. It looks like everything is a separate occurrence on the surface of things. Beneath the surface, however, the works of the spirits that oppose God and His children and come to steal, kill and destroy, are all connected and operate as one. (John 10:10)

Gopher holes on the surface look separate. Beneath, however, they are all connected by tunnels.

The Spirit of Death is at work wherever man maintains ignorance of it or wherever God’s children make place for it to operate. That is how spirits work. God’s Word says “As the bird by wandering, as the swallow by flying, so the curse causeless shall not come.” (Proverbs 26:2) It should be certain that a Spirit of Death is a curse. It certainly is not a blessing and it either one or the other. (See; Deuteronomy 30:19)  So then, it is up to those of us who know their God and His Word to pray and to “do exploits” in the resistance of the horrible Spirit of Death that is at work in the country (and the world) today.

In the book of Daniel, one of the most accurate and significant prophets of God, Daniel was visited by an archangel. An archangel is one that comes directly from God, sent by God to his people to accomplish something that is God’s will. In Chapter 10 of Daniel, our story begins. Daniel had been praying, seeking God for how long the Jews would be captive in Babylon. God’s archangel Gabriel was sent to Daniel to tell him much more than that. “Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them.” The Angel went on, “Now I have come to           come.” Daniel listened as the Angel revealed what God would do between that time and the first coming of Jesus Christ, yet hundreds of years away. Astounded, Daniel told the Angel, “I am overcome with anguish because of the vision, my lord, and I am helpless. How can I, your servant, talk with you, my lord? My strength is gone and I can hardly breathe.”

The Angel Gabriel speaking to the prophet Daniel in Babylon.

The archangel (Gabriel, by most accounts) then told Daniel in some detail the events that would precede the birth, ministry, even the death of Jesus. (Daniel 10:20 through Daniel 11:31) Then the Angel said the words that we, the people who know God must rely upon if we are to resist the Spirit of Death in America. “And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.” (Daniel 11:32, NKJV) The enemy and his Spirit of Death, against the covenant of God Almighty will do wicked acts (Newtown) and corrupt in the aftermath of those acts, but the people who know their God shall be strong and do exploits.

An Excellent Spirit knows of no other way to oppose and defeat the Spirit of Death that is operating in America today. That is up to those of “us” who know our God and His Word. And to those who know that America is under God! While we pray for those who died or were injured in Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown Connecticut, let us also pray that we, who know our God, will be empowered by Him to know and do the exploits necessary to oppose the Spirit of Death and defeat it. Amen.

The Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt and the Caliphate

Hassan-al-Banna Founder of the Muslim Brotherhood

An Excellent Spirit has brought our readers much about the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, in the United States government (the State Department and even the White House) and we have made several mentions of the Muslim Brotherhood’s ultimate goal of establishing a Caliphate to rule the entire world, beginning with the Middle East. Here,  here  and here. We have also reported on Andrew McCarthy, former US Prosecutor of the first World Trade Center bombing and an expert on Islamofacists. Here McCarthy is a veteran prosecutor and a brilliant follower of Islamofacism. As a prosecutor, McCarthy learned first hand of the threat and imminent danger that the Muslim Brotherhood poses to the West. This article in Accuracy in Media (It also ran in National Review Online) is instructive. McCarthy pulls no punches, “As Egypt under the heel of Mohamed Morsi unravels, here’s the late-breaking news: The Muslim Brotherhood is the enemy of democracy. This has always been obvious to anyone who took the time to look into it. Nevertheless, it has not been an easy point to make lo these many years. Even as the Justice Department proved beyond any doubt in court that the Brotherhood’s major goal in America and Europe – its self-professed “grand jihad” – is ‘eliminating and destroying Western civilization,” to have the temerity to point this out is to be smeared as an “Islamophobe.” That’s the Islamophilic Left’s code for “racist.’”

The Brotherhood is the successor to Egyptian hegonomy dating back to Cleopatra and Rome. While Western peoples are all too unfamiliar with The Caliphate, Muslims around the world know of it and all Muslims expect Mohammed to establish a world wide, world ruling Caliphate. To be ignorant of this core belief is to be foolish and vulnerable to defeat. Wikipedia gives a us good introduction to the Caliphate. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caliphate “A caliphate (from the Arabic خلافة or khilāfa, Turkish: Hilafet) is a Muslim spiritual community led by a supreme religious (and even political) leader known as a caliph (meaning literally a successor, i.e. a successor to the prophet Mohammad). The term caliphate is often applied to successions of Muslim empires that have existed in the Middle East and Southwest Asia. Conceptually the caliphate represents the political unity of the entire community of Muslim faithful (the ummah) ruled by a single caliph. In theory, the organization of a caliphate should be a constitutional republic (the Constitution being the Constitution of Medina), which means that the head of state, the Caliph, and other officials are representatives of the people and of Islam and must govern according to constitutional and religious law, or Sharia. In its early days, the first caliphate resembled elements of direct democracy (see shura) and an elective monarchy. It was initially led by Muhammad‘s disciples as a continuation of the leaders and religious system the prophet established, known as the ‘Rashidun caliphates’. A “caliphate” is also a state which implements such a governmental system.”

There is much dispute within the factions of Shia and Sunni Muslims as well as adherents of diverse national and pan national Islamic groups, but the one thing they all agree on it the Caliphate. “Prophethood will remain with you for as long as Allah wills it to remain, then Allah will raise it up wherever he wills to raise it up. Afterwards, there will be a Caliphate that follows the guidance of Prophethood remaining with you for as long as Allah wills it to remain. Then, He will raise it up whenever He wills to raise it up. Afterwards, there will be a reign of violently oppressive rule and it will remain with you for as long as Allah wills it to remain. Then, there will be a reign of tyrannical rule and it will remain for as long as Allah wills it to remain. Then, Allah will raise it up whenever He wills to raise it up. Then, there will be a Caliphate that follows the guidance of Prophethood.” — As-Silsilah As-Sahihah, vol. 1, no. 5

Egypt’s Gamal Nasser – Founder of United Arab Republic

In the 1950s, Gammal Nasser became President of Egypt. Nasser, “a colonel in the Egyptian army, Nasser led the Egyptian Revolution of 1952 along with Muhammad Naguib, the first president, which overthrew the monarchy of Egypt and Sudan, and heralded a new period of modernization, and socialist reform in Egypt together with a profound advancement of pan-Arab nationalism, including a short-lived union with Syria.” Here  “Nasser is seen as one of the most important political figures in both modern Arab history and politics in the 20th century. Under his leadership, Egypt nationalized the Suez Canal Company and came to play a central role in anti-imperialist efforts in the Arab World and Africa. The imposed ending to the Suez Crisis made him a hero throughout the Arab world. He was also instrumental in the establishment of the international Non-Aligned Movement. He is well known for his nationalist policies and version of pan-Arabism, also referred to as Nasserism, which won a great following in the Arab World during the 1950s and 1960s.” In 1958, Nasser led Egypt to form the United Arab Republic with Syria. While this new pan Arabic organization was in reality a response to the burgeoning Communist inroads in Syria and never spread, it has become another stepping stone on the road to Caliphate. Egypt, now the exclusive property of the Muslim Brotherhood, is perhaps the key to establishing the Caliphate. Situated on both the Mediterranian Sea and the Red Sea, it has ports, access to trade routes and is the lynchpin of the Arabic world, connecting Africa, Europe and Asia. One look at a map of the Middle East and Egypt is enough to visually confirm the Brotherhood’s dominance of this key country.

Egypt on Mediterranian and Red Sea

McCarthy continues his analysis of the Brotherhood, “Nor is it just the Left. Like the transnational progressives who hold sway in Democratic circles, many of the neoconservative thinkers who have captured Republican foreign-policy making encourage “outreach” to “moderate Islamists” – a ludicrously self-contradictory term. The idea is to collaborate in the construction of “Islamic democracies.” That’s another nonsensical term – to borrow Michael Rubin’s quote of a moderate Muslim academic piqued by the encroachments of Turkey’s ruling Islamists, “We are a democracy. Islam has nothing to do with it.” That is clearly right. Yet, to argue the chimerical folly of the sharia-democracy experiment is to be demagogued as an “isolationist.” It is as if the Right can no longer fathom an engaged foreign policy that concentrates solely on vital U.S. interests and treats America’s enemies as, well, enemies. Of course, it is neither Islamophobic nor isolationist to observe that Islamic supremacism is derived from literal Muslim scripture; that it is a mainstream interpretation of Islam whose adherents, far from being limited to a “violent extremist” fringe, number in the hundreds of millions and include many of Islam’s most influential thinkers and institutions. These are simply facts. Nor is it Islamophobic or isolationist to contend that any sensible engagement with Islamic supremacists – very much including the Muslim Brotherhood – ought to be aimed at their marginalization and defeat, not their cultivation and empowerment. This is not a popular view; opinions amply supported by unpleasant facts are rarely popular. But following it would strengthen pro-Western Muslims while promoting an American global engagement that is essential, effective, and affordable. That is the very antithesis of Islamophobia and isolationism.”

The essence, then of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Caliphate goal, the centrality of Egypt to that goal and the increasing tendency of the West and the United States in particular to act as if that were pure fantasy, all create an environment that is most conducive to the Brotherhood’s success and Islamofacists domination of the world. And that is not many decades away. The way things are progressing in the Middle East and the increasing Islamization of the US, point to rapid unfolding of these events. McCarthy agrees. “The central contention here has been that the Muslim Brotherhood is an innately, incorrigibly Islamic-supremacist outfit. Wherever it establishes a presence, it seeks – as gradually as indigenous conditions require, and as rapidly as they allow – to implement its repressive construction of sharia. Wherever it gets the opportunity to rule, it uses its power to impose this sharia, despite resistance from the society’s non-Islamist factions. This is not a mere theory. Egypt, the world’s most important Arab country, is violently convulsing before our eyes in direct reaction to the suffocation that is Islamist rule. So, will we finally take the lesson? Will we finally come to understand why democracy and Islamic supremacism cannot coexist? Western democracy has Judeo-Christian underpinnings. At its core is the equal dignity of every person. This sacred commitment, ironically, enables our bedrock secular guarantee: freedom of conscience. It is anathema to the Brotherhood. As their guiding jurist, Sheikh Yusuf Qaradawi, teaches: “Secularism can never enjoy general acceptance in an Islamic society.” This is because “the acceptance of secularism means abandonment of sharia.” Now, maybe you doubt this. Maybe you think “Islamic democracy” enthusiasts like Hillary Clinton, edified by her trusty aide Huma Abedin, know more about sharia than Sheikh Qaradawi does. But let’s just say I doubt it – and I am quite certain that the ummah would laugh, and then probably riot, at such a suggestion. The Brothers really do believe what they say. They especially believe what Qaradawi says.” Emphasis ours.

Despite all these signals, facts and the reality of Egypt’s new militant Middle East stance toward Israel, with whom it has a treaty it no longer wishes to honor, “Obama officials tirelessly portray the Brotherhood as a normal, “largely secular” organization. Other Western progressives nod their heads in unison. Even with Egypt aflame over Morsi’s aggressive constitution gambit – the fulfillment of his campaign promise of a constitution that would reflect “the sharia, then the sharia, and finally the sharia” – New York Times Cairo bureau chief David Kirkpatrick assures Hugh Hewitt’s listeners that the Brotherhood is a “moderate, regular old political force” that “just want[s] to win elections.” The Brothers, you are to conclude, are just an Islamic analogue to Europe’s Christian Democrats.”  Talk about Cool Ade! God’s Word says that “as a man thinks, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7). It is no stretch to see that as a nation thinks and acts, so are they. The United States does not treat the Brotherhood, Islamofascists or other hot spots as if they are any kind of threat to America. McCarthy says, “This is worse than lunacy. It is the most irresponsible brand of willful blindness. Mr. Kirkpatrick, in fact, amplifies his see-no-sharia analysis with a whopper: You oughtn’t render harsh judgments about the Brothers’ intentions because, “you know, you don’t know what their ultimate vision of . . . the good life looks like.” Actually, they could not have made themselves clearer on that subject. Perhaps you’ve heard: “Allah is our objective, the Prophet is our leader, the Koran is our law, jihad is our way, and dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.” Islam, in this ultimate vision, cannot tolerate secular democracy because sharia – the “Koran is our law” part of the equation – will not abide it. Sharia, Qaradawi elaborates, is a “comprehensive system” of “legislation” derived directly from “Allah’s injunctions.” Our notion of secularism, in which sovereignty belongs to the people, is for Qaradawi a “denial of the divine guidance.” Imposition of the divine guidance is the Brotherhood’s raison d’être. As explained after Mubarak’s fall by Khairat al-Shater, the Brothers’ strategic leader and Morsi’s patron, “to subjugate people to God on earth” – “to organize our life and the lives of the people on the basis of Islam” – is “our main and overall mission as Muslim Brothers.”

Egypt is central to all of this and to the Caliphate. America should act as if it understands this, but we do not. “The draft constitution the Brothers are currently trying to force on Egyptians elucidates their idea of the “basis of Islam” to which people must be subjugated. The Hudson Institute’s Samuel Tadros expertly analyzed it this week on the Corner. The Brothers make the “principles of sharia” the cornerstone of law; squelch authentic moderate reformers by stipulating that “principles” are limited to the four established Sunni jurisprudential schools (which consider all questions to have been settled by the tenth century); and vest in the fundamentalist scholars of ancient al-Azhar University a dispositive role in interpreting sharia – similar to the mullahs of Shiite Iran.”

McCarthy has done his homework, “ There is more. The new constitution tellingly strikes the old constitution’s reference to “citizenship” – a term that implied equality between Muslims and non-Muslims – as the basis for Egypt’s political order. It empowers the Islamist state to “entrench . . . moral values” in society by enforcing the Islamist ideal of “family values.” It denies freedom of conscience by refusing many religious minorities the right to worship. Although Christianity is not outlawed, the finances of Christian churches are placed under government control – enabling the creation of a Communist-style national church, subject to Islamist domination. It denies freedom of expression by adopting sharia’s repressive blasphemy laws, under which any criticism of Islam is brutally punished. It deletes the former constitution’s express guarantee of equality for women “in the fields of political, social, cultural, and economic life.”

The United States of America was never intended to become the United Arab States or anything like it. Thomas Jefferson fought the Arabs at Tripoli when he was President, recognizing the threat they posed to us and to the world at that time. It is over 200 years later and the only thing that has changed is the Arabs have become stronger, wealthier, equipped with nuclear capabilities and we are in the process of accommodating them because we choose not to engage or recognize the threat. McCarthy has it right when he says, “Phony “teachable moments” abound in the era of Obama moralizing, but this one is worth our attention: Egypt is the Brotherhood unleashed. This week’s despotic bloodletting is the natural, logical, entirely predictable end of the Brotherhood’s machinations – not just in Egypt but everyplace the Brothers operate. That includes the United States, where our government takes their counsel, invites them to shape our national-security policy, and gives them a veto over the content of materials used to train our law-enforcement, military, and intelligence agents. It is long past time to realize that this is not a game. The Brothers are playing for keeps.” Emphasis ours.

An Excellent Spirit has brought our readers this report to equip them with knowledge. Knowledge is the stuff out of which comes understanding. Prayer about knowledge, hearing God and knowing His Word make knowledge into understanding. That is wisdom. God’s word tells Believers to “get understanding and wisdom”. Proverbs 4 says it all:

“Hear, My children, the instruction of a Father,
and give attention to know understanding; for I give you good doctrine:
do not forsake My law. When I was my father’s son,
tender and the only one in the sight of my mother, He also taught me, and said to me:
“Let your heart retain My words;
keep My commands, and live. Get wisdom! Get understanding!
Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of My mouth.  Do not forsake her, and she will preserve you;
love her, and she will keep you. Wisdom is the principal thing;
therefore get wisdom.
And in all your getting, get understanding. Exalt her, and she will promote you;
She will bring you honor, when you embrace her. She will place on your head an ornament of grace;
A crown of glory she will deliver to you.”

An Excellent Spirit says that it is time we in the United States, especially those of us who know God and His Word, get some wisdom. It is up to those who know the Word of God to at least speak out and influence our policies. If we do, we will continue to live in peace and freedom. Should we continue to do less, our grandchildren or our great grandchildren will live under sharia as subjects of the Muslim Caliphate. You will be able to take that to the bank, if banks are halal under the Caliphate. Stay tuned.

 

The Hidden Cost of Living – The Blessings of The Season

An Excellent Spirit, in the spirit of Christmas, is bringing our readers perspectives that we believe will bless them. Knowledge is a blessing. Understanding is a blessing. Knowing the will of God, Creator and Father of Our Lord Jesus, the Christ is a blessing. Knowing Jesus as Savior and God as Father and the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of all Truth is the greatest blessing of all.

That brings us to this Jewish World Review column by Thomas Sowell. In it, Professor Sowell does what few economists and economic forecasters and absolutely no politicians or lamestream media do. He tells the truth. The title of the piece might give us a hint. Taxing the PoorProfessor Sowell is one of the foremost economists in America and when he talks, we listen. “With all the talk about taxing the rich, we hear very little talk about taxing the poor. Yet the marginal tax rate on someone living in poverty can sometimes be higher than the marginal tax rate on millionaires.”

Thomas Sowell, Stanford Professor, Economist, Author and American Icon

How is that, you ask? Sowell explains: “While it is true that nearly half the households in the country pay no income tax at all, the apparently simple word “tax” has many complications that can be a challenge for even professional economists to untangle. If you define a tax as only those things that the government chooses to call a tax, you get a radically different picture from what you get when you say, ‘If it looks like a tax, acts like a tax and takes away your resources like a tax, then it’s a tax.’ One of the biggest, and one of the oldest, taxes in this latter sense is inflation. Governments have stolen their people’s resources this way, not just for centuries, but for thousands of years.” Emphasis ours.

We all have heard the word inflation. We all have experienced the loss of purchasing power and the rise in prices. We are in such an extreme time now as the prices we pay for gasoline, electricity, food and all staples rise and then rise some more. Knowing, experiencing and enduring, however, do nothing to help us do something about inflation. That is where Thomas Sowell’s column comes in. He gives us understanding and that can lead to freedom!

Hyperinflation can take virtually your entire life’s savings, without the government having to bother raising the official tax rate at all. The Weimar Republic in Germany in the 1920s had thousands of printing presses turning out vast amounts of money, which the government could then spend to pay for whatever it wanted to pay for. Of course, prices skyrocketed with vastly more money in circulation. Many people’s life savings would not buy a loaf of bread. For all practical purposes, they had been robbed, big time.”  We are not accusing anyone, but are we not printing money, propping up our economy and spending our own wealth and that of our children and grandchildren today in the same manner.

An Excellent Spirit has reported on Quantitative Easing (QE 1, 2 &3) hereProfessor Sowell gives us an historical example of how this killer of wealth works. “Of course, prices skyrocketed with vastly more money in circulation. Many people’s life savings would not buy a loaf of bread. For all practical purposes, they had been robbed, big time.

A rising demagogue coined the phrase “starving billionaires,” because even a billion Deutschmarks was not enough to feed your family. That demagogue was Adolf Hitler, and the public’s loss of faith in their irresponsible government may well have contributed toward his Nazi movement’s growth.” Thank God there are no Adolph Hitler’s in America today, but the math is the same and the consequences on generations yet to come may yet spawn another maniac unless we do something to get this silent killer under control.

The real victims of inflation are our children, the elderly and the poor.

People putting up Christmas trees and wrapping presents; people struggling to buy those trees and presents; people who will not have many of either, all are the victims of inflation. Professor Sowell explains: “Most inflation does not reach that level, but the government can quietly steal a lot of your wealth with much lower rates of inflation. For example a $100 bill at the end of the 20th century would buy less than a $20 bill would buy in 1960. If you put $1,000 in your piggy bank in 1960 and took it out to spend in 2000, you would discover that your money had, over time, lost 80 percent of its value. Despite all the political rhetoric today about how nobody’s taxes will be raised, except for “the rich,” inflation transfers a percentage of everybody’s wealth to a government that expands the money supply. Moreover, inflation takes the same percentage from the poorest person in the country as it does from the richest. That’s not all. Income taxes only transfer money from your current income to the government, but it does not touch whatever money you may have saved over the years. With inflation, the government takes the same cut out of both.”

Last time we looked, that is exactly what QE 1, QE 2 and now, QE 3 are doing to everybody. We learned today that the Federal Reserve is doubling down on QE 3. Here  So what we have now is more government spending of more of our wealth, or worse, the money we are borrowing from China, to cure a problem that is of their own making. Spending. Professor Sowell continues, “It is bad enough when the poorest have to turn over the same share of their assets to the government as the richest do, but it is grotesque when the government puts a bigger bite on the poorest. This can happen because the rich can more easily convert their assets from money into things like real estate, gold or other assets whose value rises with inflation. But a welfare mother is unlikely to be able to buy real estate or gold. She can put a few dollars aside in a jar somewhere. But wherever she may hide it, inflation can steal value from it without having to lay a hand on it. No wonder the Federal Reserve uses fancy words like “quantitative easing,” instead of saying in plain English that they are essentially just printing more money. Emphasis ours.

In our Election coverage, An Excellent Spirit wrote on the changes that have come to our country. Here Most will recall the appellation “The Food Stamp President” hurled at President Obama. Sowell, no fan of the President, talks to the “takers” when he says, The biggest and most deadly “tax” rate on the poor comes from a loss of various welfare state benefits— food stamps, housing subsidies and the like— if their income goes up. Someone who is trying to climb out of poverty by working their way up can easily reach a point where a $10,000 increase in pay can cost them $15,000 in lost benefits that they no longer qualify for. That amounts to a marginal tax rate of 150 percent— far more than millionaires pay. Some government policies help some people at the expense of other people. But some policies can hurt welfare recipients, the taxpayers and others, all at the same time, even though in different ways. Why? Because we are too easily impressed by lofty political rhetoric and too little interested in the reality behind the words.” As usual, Thomas Sowell has given us the finest present we can get in this Christmas Season, understanding. It will last, not fade and it could even lead us to a better country, if enough of us get it.

God’s Word is our greatest present in any Season. Proverbs 4 says, “Hear, My children, the instruction of a Father,
And give attention to know understanding; for I give you good doctrine:
Do not forsake my law. When I was my father’s son,
tender and the only one in the sight of my mother, He also taught me, and said to me:
“Let your heart retain My words;
Keep My commands, and live. Get wisdom! Get understanding!
Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of My mouth. Do not forsake her, and she will preserve you;
Love her, and she will keep you. Wisdom is the principal thing;
Therefore get wisdom.
And in all your getting, get understanding. Exalt her, and she will promote you;
She will bring you honor, when you embrace her.  She will place on your head an ornament of grace;
A crown of glory she will deliver to you.” (Proverbs 4:1-9)

Wisdom and Understanding. God’s greatest gifts to His children in any Season. Seemingly in short supply these days, but thanks to Thomas Sowell and to God, America is blessed. Stay tuned.

Is the Republican Party Dead? Does It Matter?

The stories these last four weeks since the Election to end all Elections on November 6th are all about the end of the Republican Party. Here and Here There are almost no stories about the winning Democrat Party. That should tell us something.  An Excellent Spirit keeps close watch on these things and wants our readers to know what we know. Nothing. That is we know nothing about the state of the two political parties other than who won or lost the last Election. What we do know is about the people of America, “us”. “We” rejected the Republican candidate for President and in the states elected more Republicans Governors and state legislators. In the US Senate, however, “we” in those same states elected more Democrats US Senators, by a larger majority than before. Are we schizophrenic?

An Excellent Spirit has taken a close look at every post Election result and analysis we can find. This one, for instance, tells us that Republicans do not in any measurable way appeal to those termed “irreligious”. The recent resignation from the US Senate of South Carolina’s Jim DeMint from a safe seat is fueling speculation that the Grand Old Party (GOP, Republican Party-for those younger than 60) is disintegrating after crashing and burning in the November Election. The fact that Jim DeMint left the Democrat Senate that did absolutely nothing for four years under Obama One leads some to talk about the demise of the GOP, but others, noting that DeMint left to head the prestigious Heritage Foundation, bastion of the conservative right politics and policy, see a more active future for DeMint than another tour in the do nothing Senate.

South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint. New Leader of the Heritage Foundation

Then, rounding up the usual suspects, we have this report from Tea Party denizen Judson Phillips about Newt Gingrich and James Carville, two unlikely peas in a pod, on the Republican prospects for 2012. Phillips, a Tea Party Nation founder says, “Carville says the Democrat Party base is enthused about Hillary Clinton running for President in 2016. Gingrich says the GOP has no one who is seriously thinking about running in 2016 that can beat Hillary. Gingrich is right about that and that is a disaster that we conservatives are going to have to prevent on our own.” The Tea Party, it seems, is also ready to throw the Republicans over the cliff with the rest of America.

Democrat and Clinton Strategist James Carville

Whether the Tea Party itself is relevant or not is another issue for another day. The facts are still out but the most recent Election does not seem to auger well for the organizational skills of the ground up, leaderless grass roots amorphous Tea Party. We reported on the Tea Party projections for the past Election. Here. As we said, there are miles to go before “we” even get the details on the performance of the Tea Party in the November 6th Election, but don’t hold your breath waiting for anything more than the usual excuses and explanations about why they were little better than the egregious Republicans and their Super Pacs. Here.

Perennial Republican Presidential Candidate and Tea Party Favorite Newt Gingrich

What is clear is that America has changed. The times when Theodore White wrote majestically about the “Making” of Presidents has faded, like the photographs of the Civil War. Today is a day of images, branding and, most importantly, narratives. Barack Obama has succeeded in mastering those disciplines. He is not as good as Ronald Reagan was, but close. That is what is working and everything else is failing.  For the Republicans, conservatives, Tea Party or even the Libertarians like Rand Paul and his father to dislodge the Democrats will not be impossible. If Barack Obama, like Ronald Reagan is content to ride off into the lucrative, world stage sunset of post Presidency, that is. If Obama is not, if he and Bill Clinton and a few of their progressive, world domination billionaires (Soros, Buffet, Gates and company) are intent on keeping power and expanding that power for decades, even generations, look out. They hold the winning hand right now and “we” are playing against a stacked deck. But God!

Tea Party demonstrators in Washington D.C.

The only thing that can defeat the enemy is a better strategy. This means better planning, better execution and better performance than the Republican Party has shown since Ronald Reagan and Dwight Eisenhower. It means new narratives that resonate with Hispanics, Asians and even Blacks. It means new relevance with women and young voters. It means focused and effective communication with seniors. It means competence that Republicans have not demonstrated in decades and the Tea Party has yet to even attempt.

Is the Republican Party dead? It does not matter! They have not and cannot bridge the gap between generations, ethnicities and a majority of Americans who, right now, are convinced that America can do what Europe is failing to do: provide for a majority of the people what they are unwilling to provide for themselves. It is called socialism. It has never worked, anywhere. The only places socialism has even lasted beyond a decade or so are the placed in which it descended into totalitarian dictatorships of government by the few who wielded power for their own selfish goals. The people, Marx’s proletariat, have never prospered under such a system and never will.    But God!

The principles that undergirded America for 236 years have eroded and faded. Most Americans do not know them, understand why they worked and whether they were even good! Our children are not taught them in schools our government runs. Our families, the real educators of healthy children, do not teach anymore. We have joined the new culture and new age of I’m OK, you’re OK, right? We have become ignorant and the saying that “ignorance is bliss” is a lie! That is unless by “bliss” you mean slavery, ruin and domination by the forces of evil of this world. But God!

The Republican Party, therefore, is about as irrelevant as last year’s football scores are to an avid Cowboy fan! What is relevant and the only thing that can “save” “us” from ourselves and the ignorance that we have espoused and passed on to our children is God! God is not who “we” say He is. God is not who priests, rabbi’s, imam’s, pastors or guru’s say He is. God is and God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. God is not easily entreated. God is to be found by “us” in our hearts and spirits if we seek Him. God has told “us” all what He wants “us” to do when it comes to government, nations and even politics. It is all there in black and white (and red, if you are Christian and read most modern Bibles). Americans are in the process of learning what happens when a people embrace ignorance. There are consequences and “we” are about to become acquainted with new things like the Fiscal Cliff, Taxmageddon and other even more ominous terms. Those who have more than a passing relationship with God know that ignorance of God, His Will and His Word are without excuse. God has created this world for “us”. He gave it to us and told us to take dominion and multiply. We did the second and decided we wanted an apple instead of dominion. He kicked us out of His Garden and gave us another way out, a Savior, His Son Jesus. For over 2000 years, we have played church and hung out with Jesus, as long as it did not cost us anything too dear. That has not worked and now, it seems, we have to choose.

Those who know God must step forth in every discipline. In politics, in health and healing, in relationships, in finance and in the Church. Everywhere. It is time for us to step up; it is time we stop caterwauling about whether Republicans, Tea Party, Democrats, Christians, Jews or Muslims are going to do something and save the day. It is time that God’s children do what God has said to do all along. Take dominion of the earth. It is ours! He gave it to us! Dominion means action. Dominion takes faith. Faith in God and faith in ourselves as His sons and daughters. Faith that we are who He said we are. Faith that He is who He said He is. Faith that Jesus is Lord and faith that He is coming again. Faith that “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.” Isaiah 9:6-7, NIV)

It is right there for America and for Believers in America. Whether the Republican Party is dead, dying or in the throes of some other fate is not the issue. The issue is whether “we” the people who know God will act as if He is and He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. The full verse in Hebrews 11:6 is, “Without faith, it is impossible to please God, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” Americans of faith must thank God for His Grace and do His will for America or America will cease to exist.

Christian Martyrs in 2013? – The Past or Our Future?

Christian martyrs praying before their deaths by the lions in Rome.

An Excellent Spirit has been praying, reading and praying some more about God’s direction for America and for His Body, the Church in America and for us at An Excellent Spirit. We saw this article by Pastor Michael Youssef.

Pastor Michael Youssef

Pastor Youssef, the Pastor of an Atlanta church was born and lived his early life in Egypt. He begins his article innocuously enough: “The behavior of the western media can only be described as cowardly. That news is not going to surprise any honest, fair-minded person. Anyone can see the glaring spinelessness in their reporting (or lack thereof) on the beleaguered freedom-loving souls in Egypt today. When thousands of people demonstrated against President Mubarak in January 2011, all major western media outlets sent reporters to Egypt, where they reported day and night. It was mostly inaccurate and biased, but at least they were reporting. Now that an Islamist government—which was falsely installed by the military council—is in power, there is deafening silence. As even more young, educated democracy seekers are wounded and killed than in the Revolution of 2011, the media still cannot be lured from its hiding places. Even after the Islamist President Morsi declared his dictatorship, western media said nothing. Well, nothing except for the occasional comment to support him and his push for total control—all the poor guy needs is the power to cleanse Egypt of the vestiges of the Mubarak regime. The media ignores the fact that government employees make up a majority of the country and can be categorized as vestiges of the Mubarak regime. I get it: the western media is scared. Most, if not all, are intimidated and fearful of Islamists. But no one buys their claim that they only fear being accused of Islamophobia. They really fear for their lives, and for their profits. And that fear is the root of their cowardice.”

Egyptians protesting Mursi’s power grab by Muslim Brotherhood.

Strong words from a Christian. Even stronger from an American Christian pastor and leader. That is not to say that American Christians have not had leaders who have spoken plainly and strongly. We have and continue to have. Nevertheless, this is 2012 and Americans have just re-elected the most anti-Christian, anti-Israel, pro Islam President in our history. Whether “we” thought about it or not, that is who we just re-elected and there is nothing short of impeachment that “we” can do if it turns out that “we” are not happy with that choice in the coming four years. The fact is that fewer Christians voted in the 2012 Presidential Election than in 2008 and the number has been going down every four years for some time. (Sources: Barna and Heritage)

An Excellent Spirit has reported on the state of America’s lamestream media since we began publishing in July 2012. The list of our posts is long, but you can review any or all here. Pastor Youssef is clear in his blame of our media for what he sees happening in Egypt, the world and ultimately, America. He calls their behavior “cowardly” and accuses the media of acting out of fear of Islamists. We are not so sure we agree with Youssef’s conclusion, but his facts are absolutely accurate. As an Egyptian American, his concern is genuine for his people in Egypt. “When the Director General of the BBC was asked why they had tried so hard to not offend Muslims, especially when they had often treated Christians with scorn, his honest answer was: a Christian has “broad shoulders” and can take it, but an Islamist may complain by saying, “I am loading my AK47.” As the power of fear and intimidation grows worldwide, the slippery slope of appeasement will make the leftist western media obsolete as a news source. An uninformed public will remain blissfully ignorant until it is too late to stop the media from becoming a dangerous tool in the Islamist’s pocket. Already it feels like I’m living back in Egypt during the 1960s when most of the nation’s media got their cues from Nasser. They would attack whom they knew Nasser wanted attacked. And they would remain silent on certain deadly issues if they knew he wanted them to close their eyes.” Not your usual ranting against a lame, leftist, see no evil, report no evil American media that “we” all have come to detest and mistrust.

The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s Enforcers of the Faith

What is also true is that his prophetic pronouncement at the end of his piece is true of America and of the Body of Christ in America. “Today’s protestors represent the best of Egypt. They are Muslim men and Christian men. They are veiled women and unveiled women. They are united in a love for their country and disdain for what their Islamist president is doing to it. Unlike western media, they have shown courage time after time. They protested last year at enormous risk to their lives. Now they protest again make sure their courage has not been for nothing. But Morsi is an Islamist, and the media fears the Islamists. And Morsi is President Obama’s ally, and the media loves the U.S. president. That leaves the protestors out in the cold with the TV cameras turned off. The people of the West need to learn from their beleaguered freedom-loving Egyptian compatriots who are shedding their blood for true democracy. The people of the West need to wake up from their slumber, follow the example of the Egyptian protestors, and rise up against the deliberate deception of the western media. It is time for the people of the West—for all truth-loving people—to boycott the cowards and support the courageous. Emphasis ours.

Peaceful Egyptians demonstrate for democracy in Cairo

As we said, Youssef is a pastor and Christian leader who has spent more of his life in the “west” than living in the land of his birth. Nevertheless, he is more than qualified, both as an Egyptian who has been back to the Middle East umpteen times and as a Christian leader, educator and spiritual disciple of Jesus Christ, to warn his people (“us” brothers and sisters in Christ) of the perils we now face in this dangerous world that our inattention has brought to America. We have been asleep. We have not voted. We have not been informed. We do not, as does Pastor Youssef, speak out about what we see, much less of what we are ignorant.

The Catholic Church in Egypt speaks out despite fear of reprisal.

Why? Of what are we, the Body of Christ, if anything, afraid? Why do our leaders, men and women who are unafraid to face death and dismemberment to spread the gospel, keep silent about what is going on in the world and in America?  Where have all the martyrs gone?

From the start of the Christian church, martyrs have been among those who have testified to the character, the divinity and the love of Jesus Christ and of God, the Father. Beginning with Stephen, perhaps the first martyr and continuing down the ages, Wikipedia tells us that the Body of Christ, as the church is called by God, has been led and established in the world by martyrs. From St. Stephen, Protomartyr, who was stoned in 34 AD., we know that those that followed him in martydom for Christ included the Apostles and Gospel writers.  St. James the Great (Son of Zebedee) was beheaded in 44 AD. St. Philip the Apostle was crucified in 54 AD. St. Matthew the Evangelist killed with a halberd (a combination of battle axe and spear) in 60 AD. St. James the Just, beaten to death with a club after being crucified and stoned. St. Matthias was stoned and beheaded. St. Andrew, St. Peter’s brother, was crucified. St. Mark the Evangelist, was dragged in the streets of Alexandria then beheaded. St. Peter, crucified upside-down. St. Paul, beheaded in Rome. St. Jude was martyred in Syria in AD 65. St. Bartholomew flayed alive and crucified in Armenia during the first century. St. Thomas the Apostle was killed by a spear in Mylapore, Madras, India in AD 72. St. Luke the Evangelist was hanged at age 84 in Boeotia, Greece.

The Apostles Peter and Paul – Early Christian Martyrs

From this beginning, the list of Christian martyrs is long and distinguished but almost devoid of Americans. Other than Mormon church founders Joseph Smith and Hyram Smith and Marcus Whitman and his wife Narcissa who were martyred in what is now Washington state, the only other listed martyrs who were Americans were five young Christian missionaries in Ecuador, Jim Elliot, Nate Saint, Ed McCully, Pete Fleming 1956 and Roger Youderian who were killed while attempting to evangelize the Waodani people.

That is somewhat like our American good fortune and our heritage in living, since our inception in relative peace and prosperity. Americans are among the most fortunate and free people in the history of man in both a material and physical sense. We have reported before the estimate that of the billions of people that God has created since He created Adam, less than 5% of those have ever lived in comparable freedom and prosperity as have Americans. That is why untold hundreds of millions have come to our shores seeking and finding a better life.

English Romantic (and anti-Christian) poet John Keats said, “I have been astonished that men could die martyrs for their religion – I have shudder’d at it. I shudder no more. I could be martyr’d for my religion Love is my religion And I could die for that. I could die for you.” – John Keats (1795-1821 An Excellent Spirit has found some who died for Christ and for His people in modern times. Chief among these is Dietrich Bonhoeffer, German pastor and Nazi resister. Bonhoeffer became known for his staunch resistance to the Nazi dictatorship. He strongly opposed Hitler’s euthanasia program and genocidal persecution of the Jews. He was also involved in plans by members of the Abwehr (the German Military Intelligence Office) to assassinate Adolf Hitler. He was arrested in April 1943 by the Gestapo and executed by hanging in April 1945 while imprisoned at a Nazi concentration camp, just 23 days before the German surrender. If ever a Christian loved God more than his life, it was Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

America’s martyrs are not the traditional kind of resisters of tyranny of man or devil. They are our dead soldiers and sailors, men and women, who have preserved American freedom with their lives. We celebrate them in places all over the world and principally at Arlington National Cemetery. That has been the American Way. Our country has been blessed to have hundreds of thousands of graves with names on them, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier to commemorate those who are not known by name and few forgotten dead like the rest of the world. In 1864, U.S. Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton officially designated Arlington Mansion and two hundred surrounding acres as a United States military cemetery. Today, more than 300,000 people are buried at Arlington Cemetery. On Arlington’s 612 Acres there are approximately 6,900 burials a year and two American President’s are buried there. (President Kennedy and President Taft) These then are our martyrs to date in America.

Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day

An Excellent Spirit has reported many times on what occurred in Benghazi Libya on September 11th of this year. Here  What we have not said, as yet, is that the four men who died there will most probably be listed in Wikipedia’s list of martyrs and, perhaps, soon. The reason we hesitate about the timing of the listing is that the same lamestream media that Dr. Youssef lambastes in his article has almost totally ignored the Benghazi murders and the cover up and now is engaged in a cover up of the original cover up. Confusing? That is exactly the point. “They” do not want “us” to know anything about Benghazi. In case any of “us” care, and the polls say we do not, “they” want us as completely ignorant as we can be. What of the hearings we were told would take place after the Election? What about all those sound bites that we would hear from Clinton, Patreaus, even the President? Where have they gone? As the song tells us prophetically,  “They are gone to graveyards, every one. When will we ever learn?”

Four men, Americans and in the service, not of some Christian missionary group or church, or like those Dr. Youssef describes in Egypt, freedom fighters, but diplomats and US soldiers tasked with protecting diplomats, died. They died brutally and at least one or two of them died unnecessarily according to the little we have been told. We do know that Ambassador Christopher Stevens detailed the danger right up to and including the day he died and nothing was done to prevent his death or support his mission. We know that the US Government apparently through the State Department that is riddled with Muslim Brotherhood sympathizers (Huma Abedin) was in charge of part of the security that failed to protect our men.The families of those who died in Benghazi on September 11th still have not been given what any soldier’s family gets, official notification by the US Government of the death, its cause and other details.

An Excellent Spirit has reported that what was actually happening in Benghazi may have had a lot more to do with the deaths of the four American martyrs- there! We said it! – than President Obama, Secretary of State Clinton or even the Congressional investigators want the American people to know. This is the latest we have seen in the disappearing stories on a scandal that was compared with Watergate a few short weeks ago.

That brings us back to where we started with Pastor Michael Youssef and his article. When Youssef says “The people of the West need to wake up from their slumber, follow the example of the Egyptian protestors, and rise up against the deliberate deception of the western media. It is time for the people of the West—for all truth-loving people—to boycott the cowards and support the courageous.” whom is he speaking about? Who are the “cowards” and who are the “courageous”?

Perhaps as important as those questions are, if America is to be saved from what is coming on every front (economic-Fiscal Cliff, Taxmageddon, collapse; social– class warfare, culture shock and sharia Americana; military & security– sequestration cuts, missile defense cuts, military cuts and more to name just a few), what is the Christian church in America to do? What are the leaders of the church in America to do? When will they do it, whatever it is?

Scene from American “Mega Church” Service

Dr .Michael Youssef may have just started something. There are many more just like him in America. Men and women of great conviction and mission who have been involved and care, but who have not spoken up as loudly as Youssef has. There are many who are involved and who are leading but there are few who even approach the question of what they are willing to put on the table, as did Bonhoeffer and the Apostles and those in between. It is beginning to look like times have not changed all that much and “we” the people who have conveniently forgotten about our past, will now be called upon to repeat it to a great degree. An Excellent Spirit prays it is not so, but our faith in those prayers is more challenged every day.

Lord God of Hosts! Be with America and the Body of Christ in America yet! Help us not to forget what You remember always: the lives of each one who has been martyred for You and why their martyrdom was and is necessary. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. Amen.

Dr. Michael Youssef is the author of 27 books including his most recent and timely Blindsided: The Radical Islamic Conquest. His blog: www.michaelyoussef.com

Don’t Say We Didn’t Tell You. We Did!

An Excellent Spirit told our readers to repeal Obamacare. Here Now that the Election is over and repeal of the re-elected President’s signature achievement is doomed, we thought you should see this.  “Hospitals are expected to cut some 93,000 jobs in 2013 in anticipation of ObamaCare. A former presidential candidate and conservative advocate says America needs to prepare for major changes in the medical industry. Orlando Health, a not-for-profit network of community and specialty hospitals, is just one example of the massive layoffs expected in the coming year. Officials with the Central Florida-based healthcare services provider announced on Monday that the largest staff reduction in its nearly 100-year history will result in cutting up to 400 jobs, starting immediately.”

The problem is that nothing is free and someone always pays for everything. Adding the trillions of dollars to the federal budget and paying for untold hundreds of thousands of people to access the health care system will wreck what once was the best health care in the world, even for those who did not have health care. “the quality of healthcare, in a nation known for its excellence in medical services, will see a decline.

“I think that what the public still doesn’t realize is that all the savings the president projected are literally savings that come from not paying hospitals, doctors and other care centers for services,” he tells OneNewsNow. “And if you don’t pay them, you’re not going to get the services, unless somehow through courts or otherwise we can restrict the impact of ObamaCare.” Louisiana State University announced in October it would cut 1,495 positions and various programs across its seven hospitals to trim more than $150 million from its budget.

For a complete discourse on what havoc Obamacare will produce in American health care and way it must be repealed, go to Heritage Foundation’s report. Here

We reported what we knew and the people voted. Now it is time to pay the piper. Elections have consequences and we are all about to find out the consequences of Obamacare. Stay tuned.

The Fiscal Cliff – Who Gets Hurt? Who Cares?

An Excellent Spirit has been writing about The Fiscal Cliff and Taxmageddon since the first day of our publication on July 9, 2012. Here  and here. Today and tomorrow, we are going to take a look at what is likely to happen a few short weeks away after January 1, 2103 and at the real question: Do Americans really care? Do “we” know what the fiscal cliff or taxmageddon are? If “we” did, what would “we” do? What could “we” do?

Part One: What Is The Fiscal Cliff? 

An Excellent Spirit begins with one of our favorite and best sources, Stanford University Professor Thomas Sowell. In a column appearing today in both Townhall and Jewish World Review, Sowell gives us information that only an economist could. “First of all, despite all the melodrama about raising taxes on “the rich,” even if that is done it will scarcely make a dent in the government’s financial problems. Raising the tax rates on everybody in the top two percent will not get enough additional tax revenue to run the government for ten days. And what will the government do to pay for the other 355 days in the year?”

Good question. Another good question is do the American people know or care? Even if “we” knew, is it not more likely that even the most conservative and activist of “us” would just sit back and wait for the inevitable disastrous dénouement and then get on with the business of coping with what “we” are powerless to change? That, unfortunately is what America has come to. Government by the consent of the governed is no more a reality than helium inflated dirigibles flying through space piloted by Buck Rodgers or Captain Video. A distant memory completely dispelled by what is ever increasingly occupying our days and nights with “reality” TV or Victoria’s Secret Fashion Shows for our children to watch every night.

Thomas Sowell, as he usually does, brings clarity to the discussion, even as he informs us of the size of the problem. “All the political angst and moral melodrama about getting “the rich” to pay “their fair share” is part of a big charade. This is not about economics, it is about politics. Taxing “the rich” will produce a drop in the bucket when compared to the staggering and unprecedented deficits of the Obama administration. No previous administration in the entire history of the nation ever finished the year with a trillion dollar deficit. The Obama administration has done so every single year. Yet political and media discussions of the financial crisis have been focused overwhelmingly on how to get more tax revenue to pay for past and future spending.”

Now, An Excellent Spirit know that most Americans do not care and do not want to know, but on the chance that a few of our readers do want the facts, Sowell is a source we trust. “The very catchwords and phrases used by the Obama administration betray how phony this all is. For example, “We are just asking the rich to pay a little more.” This is an insult to our intelligence. The government doesn’t “ask” anybody to pay anything. It orders you to pay the taxes they impose and you can go to prison if you don’t. Then there are all the fancy substitute words for plain old spending— words like “stimulus” or “investing in the industries of the future.” The theory about “stimulus” is that government spending will stimulate private businesses and financial institutions to put more of their money into the economy, speeding up the recovery. But the fact that you call something a “stimulus” does not make it a stimulus. Stimulus spending began during the Bush administration and has continued full blast during the Obama administration. But the end result is that both businesses and financial institutions have had record amounts of their own money sitting idle. The rate of circulation of money slowed down. All this is the opposite of stimulus.”

Thank you, Professor. “We” knew there was something wrong with “our” understanding or “their” truthfulness. It is nice to know the problem is both “us” and “them”. Now, “we” know that someone will bring up “our” need to invest in the future. Sowell anticipates that. “What about “investing in the industries of the future”? Does the White House come equipped with a crystal ball? Calling government spending “investment” does not make it investment any more than calling spending “stimulus” makes it stimulate anything. What in the world would lead anyone to think that politicians have some magic way of knowing what the industries of the future are? Thus far the Obama administration has repeatedly “invested” in the bankruptcies of the present, such as Solyndra.” That is fine, “we” heard something about “Solyndra” and it was not good. Now, “we” understand a little. But, what can “we” do about any of this? Don’t “we” have to rely on those “we” send to represent “us”?

 

Thomas Sowell makes short work out of that fantasy as well. “Using lofty words to obscure tawdry realities extends beyond the White House. Referring to the Federal Reserve System’s creation of hundreds of billions of new dollars out of thin air as “quantitative easing” makes it seem as if this is some soothing and esoteric process, rather than amounting essentially to nothing more than printing more money. Debasing the value of money by creating more of it is nothing new or esoteric. Irresponsible governments have done this, not just for centuries, but for thousands of years. It is a way to take people’s wealth from them without having to openly raise taxes. Inflation is the most universal tax of all. All the pretty talk about how tax rates will be raised only on “the rich” hides the ugly fact that the poorest people in the country will see the value of their money decline, just like everybody else, and at the same rate as everybody else, when the government creates more money and spends it. If you have $100 and, after inflation follows from “quantitative easing,” that $100 dollars will only buy what $80 bought before, then that is the same economically as if the government had taxed away one-fifth of your money and spent it. But it is not the same politically, so long as gullible people don’t look beyond words to the reality that inflation taxes everybody, the poorest as well as the richest.”

Next, after we go over the Cliff or not, is the battle to raise our spending limit so the President and Congress can spend more of the money “we” don’t have on programs “we” don’t need. 

That is where we end the first part of the lesson of the Fiscal Cliff.  If the people who are affected most by the decisions being made in the White House and Congress and the Federal Reserve do not look at what happens to them as a result of the actions of the actors on stage, what is all the noise about? Really!

 We will be back tomorrow with some more information and questions.

Tax The Rich – Hurt Everyone!

An Excellent Spirit has made no secret of our opposition to President Obama’s “tax the rich”, Buffet Rule proposals to raise taxes on those “millionaires and billionaires” making more than $200,00 per year. Europe has shown that every time they increased taxes on those who had money, those people left the country, or at least, their money did and the economy suffered. This recent New York Times Editorial by the aforementioned Warren Buffett makes the case for the proposal. “Additionally, we need Congress, right now, to enact a minimum tax on high incomes. I would suggest 30 percent of taxable income between $1 million and $10 million, and 35 percent on amounts above that. A plain and simple rule like that will block the efforts of lobbyists, lawyers and contribution-hungry legislators to keep the ultrarich paying rates well below those incurred by people with income just a tiny fraction of ours. Only a minimum tax on very high incomes will prevent the stated tax rate from being eviscerated by these warriors for the wealthy. Above all, we should not postpone these changes in the name of “reforming” the tax code. True, changes are badly needed. We need to get rid of arrangements like “carried interest” that enable income from labor to be magically converted into capital gains. And it’s sickening that a Cayman Islands mail drop can be central to tax maneuvering by wealthy individuals and corporations. But the reform of such complexities should not promote delay in our correcting simple and expensive inequities. We can’t let those who want to protect the privileged get away with insisting that we do nothing until we can do everything. Our government’s goal should be to bring in revenues of 18.5 percent of G.D.P. and spend about 21 percent of G.D.P. — levels that have been attained over extended periods in the past and can clearly be reached again. As the math makes clear, this won’t stem our budget deficits; in fact, it will continue them. But assuming even conservative projections about inflation and economic growth, this ratio of revenue to spending will keep America’s debt stable in relation to the country’s economic output. In the last fiscal year, we were far away from this fiscal balance — bringing in 15.5 percent of G.D.P. in revenue and spending 22.4 percent. Correcting our course will require major concessions by both Republicans and Democrats.” Emphasis ours.

President Obama presenting Warren Buffet the Medal of Freedom

While Mr. Buffet, reported to be one of the two or three richest men in the world, appears to be more than magnanimous, let us all remember that Buffet has his money and on the wealth that he has, like everyone else, he first paid income taxes for the year in which that income was actually earned and then pays capital gains taxes on the increase of that wealth every year it earns an income. Thus, Buffet’s money is taxed twice and sometimes more, but only in the event that Buffet puts it at risk in the financial markets and earns an increase. We have reported that Buffet and others apparently have decided not to invest in America, so their tax rate will be zero! Here

That is one side of the story. If you are among the few people on the planet Earth that still believe The New York Times, read no farther. If you would like to see another view, just in case the Times seems biased, far to the left and elitist, there is this commentary on Buffet’s editorial by the Heritage Foundation’s Ask Heritage. Their review of Buffet’s proposal and the proposals of the Obama Administration that are being debated in Congress as we write would be comical if it were not terrifying.

First they deal with tax hikes in general. “Buffett says tax hikes won’t hurt jobs. Fact: Tax hikes, especially those he espouses, hurt jobs.” Heritage concludes “The amount that their taxes would go up could be roughly equivalent to one employee’s salary, meaning that’s one person they can’t hire in the new year. A study by Ernst and Young estimates that these tax hikes would kill 710,000 jobs.”

Then Heritage looks at investment as a creator of wealth, jobs and prosperity. Buffett says tax hikes won’t stop investors from investing. Fact: Any time you tax something, you get less of it.”     They burst that bubble as follows: “Buffett says: “So let’s forget about the rich and ultrarich going on strike and stuffing their ample funds under their mattresses if—gasp—capital gains rates and ordinary income rates are increased. The ultrarich, including me, will forever pursue investment opportunities.” Let’s think about what taxes are intended to do. The cigarette tax is intended to curb smoking. Proponents of a carbon tax want to curb the amount of carbon emissions we are producing. In Washington, D.C., a plastic bag tax is intended to curb the number of plastic bags people use. When you tax something more, people do less of it. This is how taxes work. It doesn’t change because the behavior being taxed is investing rather than smoking. Enough said? There is more.

“Buffett says the wealthy aren’t even paying a minimum tax. Fact: We already have an Alternative Minimum Tax.” As anyone who pays taxes knows we have what is known as the Alternative Minimum Tax. This would be unknown by those who pay no taxes, but is well known by the rest of “us”. Given that fact, Heritage reasons “Congress passed the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) in the early 1970s to ensure that a few high-income taxpayers did not reduce their tax liability too much by taking advantage of all the deductions, exemptions, and credits Congress put in the tax code. But Congress did not index for inflation the income threshold over which families qualify for this extra tax. So now Congress must annually “patch” the AMT by raising the threshold to correct this mistake. Even with the patch, the AMT still ends up falling on almost 4 million taxpayers; Congress initially intended for it to hit only a few hundred. The top 10 percent of earners in the United States already pay more than 70 percent of federal income taxes. To move forward in this debate, those who argue that we just need to “tax the rich” will have to get real. We can’t close the budget deficit by taxing the rich. 

Then Heritage really gets down to the crux of our problem. “Buffett says we need to raise taxes to bring in more revenue for the government. Fact: The problem is government spending, not government revenue.” Finally, Heritage tells “us” what “we” already know: if you spend more than you make, you will run out of money, credit and wind up in debt and then bankrupt. “Revenues are lower now today than normal, not because of tax rates, but because of the slow-growing economy. As the economy recovers, so will revenues. And they will continue to grow as the economy thrives. Why? Because more people are investing, saving, working, and enjoying higher wages. The nifty little benefit for the government of a strong, growing economy is that people pay more in taxes. But on to spending. The White House already estimates that federal spending will be 23.1 percent of GDP this year—well above Buffett’s target. But, unlike taxes—which will return to the historical levels Buffett aims for, spending will continue to spiral ever upwards. In 25 years, spending will be 35.7 percent of GDP. In 2025, the big three entitlements will gobble up a full 18.5 percent of GDP—the entire amount of revenue that Buffett would like to raise. In Buffett’s world, then, after funding entitlements, that leaves only 2.5 percent of GDP for everything else (assuming that interest rates don’t go through the roof). The fact is that ever-growing entitlements have put spending on a trajectory toward a European-level implosion. If they are not reined in, taxes on everyone will have to rise perpetually just to keep pace.

This is not the first time Heritage has addressed this issue. For more, go here. Why are “we” having this confusing debate? If Heritage is right, we should be cutting spending and keeping taxes at the levels they are until we can reduce taxes and stimulate more growth. More growth means more jobs and more revenues until we are totally out of debt!

An Excellent Spirit has only one answer to this conundrum. They, Buffet, Obama and the “progressives” want “us” in debt and without any help other than “them”. To them, government is the only answer. Government is the only safe employer. We do not need riches, we need government. We do not need freedom, we need government. Government by consent of the governed must be replaced by government consenting to our life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness or not at all!  We are on our way, America. Stay tuned.

Thoughts from Great Thinkers

 Thomas Sowell

An Excellent Spirit has posted on Stanford Professor Thomas Sowell many times. In the aftermath of the recent Election, this Townhall column appeared today. The piece is about a recently published book by Stephen Moore entitled “ Who’s the Fairest of Them All?” The Truth about Opportunity, Taxes, and Wealth in America”, Encounter Books (October 9, 2012). Professor Sowell does more than just tout this work. At just 136 pages, the book is said by Sowell to too late to make a difference in the past Election. “If everyone in America had read Stephen Moore’s new book, “Who’s The Fairest of Them All?”, Barack Obama would have lost the election in a landslide. The point here is not to say, “Where was Stephen Moore when we needed him?” A more apt question might be, “Where was the whole economics profession when we needed them?” Where were the media? For that matter, where were the Republicans?”

Sowell then reviews the recent history of both Democrats and Republicans on the subject of taxing the rich. As this is about to hit America with a jolt in 2013, both the book and Sowell’s piece are timely and, as usual, say what needs to be said, even if no one is listening. As he did with his book, The Housing Boom and Bust, Thomas Sowell spells out with clarity the economic realities America faces and the consequences of following failed policies. Read the whole thing and get a copy of this book and read it. Perhaps, then, Americans will be prepared to act once we are over the Fiscal Cliff, hurtling into the Abyss. God bless America. “We” Americans will need all the blessing “we” can get. Hard times are coming, if Thomas Sowell is right. Stay tuned.

Frank Gaffney

In this Townhall column, Frank Gaffney, another source preferred by An Excellent Spirit, writes on the Arab Spring, the Muslim Brotherhood and the failed, desperate policies of the Obama Administration in the Middle East. “During the so-called “Arab Spring,” the Obama administration insisted that the United States risked being on the “wrong side of history” if it remained aligned with secular despots like Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak. Recent events have made clear that there is a wrong side for freedom in the Mideast all right and, thanks to Team Obama’s embrace of the Muslim Brotherhood, we’re on it.” Read the whole thing here.

After reviewing the whole sordid mess that President Obama and his re-election inattentiveness have created in the Middle East (to say nothing of the Fiscal Cliff and other issues), Gaffney asks a question that An Excellent Spirit has asked some time ago. “The question occurs – and must be insistently asked in congressional hearings into the Benghazigate scandal and the larger failed practice of embracing Islamists of which it is a symptom: To what extent are individuals with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood who are working in or serving as advisors to the Obama administration contributing to these clearly counterproductive national security policies? Five Members of Congress – Republican Representatives Michele Bachmann, Louie Gohmert, Trent Franks, Lynn Westmoreland and Tom Rooney – presciently raised this concern last June, and were roundly criticized for doing so (including by some in their own party). They appear to have been vindicated in their warnings that such influence operations are putting us on the wrong side of history. We cannot afford to remain there, to the benefit of our enemies and their jihadist agenda.” Here is a round up of our past articles on the subject.  We especially draw our readers attention to two of the earliest articles on “America’s Iron Lady”.

 Victor Davis Hanson

 An Excellent Spirit has many articles on Stanford’s other “twin tower” of wisdom. Here Today, this column in PJ Media, gives our readers Hanson’s take on the Election and what it means to America in the near future. Hanson’s analysis covers ten topics including the lamestream media (The Mainstream Media Still Rules), the populist appeal of Obama, attack ads that destroyed Mitt Romney, the “cocoon” of Fox News and right wing talk radio and much more. Be sure to read the whole thing. His conclusion is, as usual, to the point. “A final take on the election: Mitt Romney was a glittering Sir Galahad who, given his impressive horse, armor, and lance, along with his decency and piety, assumed that he could win a joust in a fair charge against the other team’s knight. Instead he waded into a sudden fray where he was swarmed, mobbed, cut off, pulled off his magnificent steed, had his matchless armor yanked away by a mob of foot soldiers, and then, once stripped clean, was clubbed and maced beyond recognition.”

An Excellent Spirit will have much more on the factors that played out in the Election. We have already posted on it. Here and here  We will revisit the subject once full data on the Election are available and broken down. Stay tuned.

Give Thanks To God For All His Blessings!

Today is Thanksgiving, a national Holiday in America. We celebrate our good fortune in being brought by God to America and in enduring all that we faced as people and as a nation to establish this experiment in a democratic republic. To whom do we give thanks? To God! 

God is the one who the Pilgrims thanked back in the days of Miles Standish and Pocohantus. It was God then and it is God today to Whom Americans owe thanks, reverence, obedience and gratitude. It was God to Whom George Washington knelt and beseeched in Valley Forge. It was God that Benjamin Franklin invoked when the battle over a Constitution reached a crisis. It was God Whom Thomas Jefferson identified as the One who gave “us” the inalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in the Declaration of Independence.

George Washington on his knees seeking God’s help at Valley Forge

It was God to Whom Jesus, the Son of God, gave thanks before He broke the bread at The Last Supper. It was God, it is God, it will ever be God! God created this world and every man and woman since Adam have been His sons and daughters, no matter what they have thought or think. God says so and we at An Excellent Spirit believe God! Always. About everything.

Jesus took the Bread and after he broke it He gave thanks to God.

Today, as you celebrate Thanksgiving, give thanks to the God of Heaven and Earth who created you and loves you with an everlasting love! We here at An Excellent Spirit will resume our efforts tonight. For today, we give thanks to God. Won’t you please join with us?

Here is one of the many Psalms, written by David and other anointed psalmists that are now Scripture, that celebrate God and give Him thanks. We can think of no better way to celebrate our holiday by praying, reciting out loud, singing or just reading this celebration that clearly shows that Thanksgiving did not originate with Americans. It originated with God!

Psalm 118

Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. Let Israel now say, “His mercy endures forever.” Let the house of Aaron now say, “His mercy endures forever.” Let those who fear the Lord now say, “His mercy endures forever.” I called on the Lord in distress; The Lord answered me and set me in a broad place. The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me? The Lord is for me among those who help me; Therefore I shall see my desire on those who hate me. It is better to trust in the Lord Than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord Than to put confidence in princes. All nations surrounded me, But in the name of the Lord I will destroy them.       They surrounded me, Yes, they surrounded me; But in the name of the Lord I will destroy them. They surrounded me like bees; They were quenched like a fire of thorns; For in the name of the Lord I will destroy them. You pushed me violently, that I might fall, But the Lord helped me. The Lord is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation. The voice of rejoicing and salvation Is in the tents of the righteous; The right hand of the Lord does valiantly. The right hand of the Lord is exalted; The right hand of the Lord does valiantly. I shall not die, but live, And declare the works of the Lord. The Lord has chastened me severely, But He has not given me over to death. Open to me the gates of righteousness; I will go through them, And I will praise the Lord. This is the gate of the Lord, Through which the righteous shall enter.  I will praise You, For You have answered me, And have become my salvation. The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone. This was the Lord’s doing; It is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day the Lord has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.  Save now, I pray, O Lord; O Lord, I pray, send now prosperity. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!  We have blessed you from the house of the Lord. God is the Lord, And He has given us light; Bind the sacrifice with cords to the horns of the altar. You are my God, and I will praise You; You are my God, I will exalt You. Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.

An Excellent Spirit wishes and prays for a Happy, Blessed Thanksgiving to all of God’s Children in America and in the World!