from my notebook

My head is full of thoughts, and I have to write them down.

Archive for the category “politics”

24/7 News Channels Have Corrupted Quality of News Reporting

Wikinews Breaking News orange

With all the recent “Breaking News” stories so far this year, I’ve come to realize that competition is not always a good thing. When CNN began to broadcast as the first 24/7 news channel, it was wonderful to be able to catch up on  what was happening around the world whenever we wanted.

 

Now we have several big name news networks and lots of wannabes. Lots of competition. Lots of hours in the day to fill with programming. Lots of opinions filling our minds. What was once factual news reporting is now a sensationalized production to see who can get the most viewers. The line between entertainment and news reporting is becoming quite blurry.

 

Sure we get tons of information quicker than ever, more and more live as it happens. But how good is that info? How many people’s lives are affected negatively by erroneous reporting in the rush to be frist? How do we know what to believe? And perhaps most importantly, how are these sensationalized stories and so-called expert opinions being spouted off throughout the programming day shaping our country?

 

Is it political propaganda in its most modern (to date) form?

 

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Revival or Politics

I’ve been reading through Isaiah, and this morning a picture of where our society seems to be headed came to mind. In Chapter 16, the prophet speaks of  fallen nations and longings for how wonderful things used to be.

People have always referred to the “good ole days,” but this kind of longing is different. It’s not just one of reminiscing. It’s one of desperation, with a sense of hopelessness. More and more of us seem to feel this way about our country. Political slams and warnings dominate unsolicited emails and Facebook shares. But no matter how much we criticize the government, we’ll never find the answer there.

The solution isn’t far away in Washington or Europe. It is inside each one of us. The only solution for Isaiah’s time, and the only solution for us is revival of God’s people. A great awakening, if you will. That’s where our concern should be. That’s where our prayers should focus. Otherwise…

“Moab’s splendor will become an object of contempt, in spite of a very large population. And those who are left will be few and weak.” – Isaiah 16:14

 

A Political Proverb

“Eloquent words are not appropriate on a fool’s lips; how much worse are lies for a ruler.” – Proverbs 17:7

Political Prayers

Job 12:24 provides a little hint as to how we should pray for our country, not just during times of political elections.

“He [God] deprives the world’s leaders of reason, and makes them wander in a trackless wasteland.”

Our prayers tend to be, “God, put so and so in office,” or “God, please get so and so out of office.”
Maybe our prayers should be for God to give those already in office “reason,” wisdom, courage, and insight.

Perhaps one reason we don’t is because the whole idea of God changing those already in office seems hopeless. But think about that for a moment. Is anything hopeless with God? Is anything too hard for him?

Maybe we should exercise more faith and less political slandering. Maybe. It’s just a thought.

Weekly Link-Up

Some great links from this week.

15 Grammar Mistakes That Can Make You Look Silly [infographic]

Apple’s iPad Announcement Measured in Tweets

Readers’ Poll: The Best Monkees Songs of All Time

The Issue Is Not Birth Control– It’s Government Coercion

A Bucket List For The End Of The World (Infographic)

It Takes More Than a Godly Leader

Listening to Christians discuss politics will sometimes lead one to believe that if we just had a Christian President and Congress everything would be alright. While it would certainly help, it takes more than that. A prime example can be found in the Old Testament account of King Josiah.

Josiah was one of only three kings throughout Old Testament history who was truly a godly man and leader. Yet for most of his 31 year reign, the people remained ungodly, continuing to worship idols and practice pagan rituals. There was improvement prior to Josiah’s death, but not enough to lift God’s wrath.

While Josiah was considered one of the best leaders God’s people ever had, the people were mostly unchanged. In this election year, we must remember that electing a godly President is not the sum answer. It will take more than that to change our country and move it back toward God. It will take each one of us committing to living godly lives every day.

Political Shifts

Interesting portrayal here of the current political power’s view of the constitution and the value of the dollar. At first glance you might say it is party biased, but take a closer look. JFK is in the middle, George W is on the left.  They aren’t clapping, however. What are your thoughts?

Welfare

Acts 4:32-34  One commentary I read on this verse mentions the elimination of poverty among the people.  It used to be that way.  Not in my lifetime.  That people took care of other people, not zero poverty.  In fact, Jesus said the poor will always be with us.  But a major change took place early in the last century – the advent of government welfare.  Now even among Christians the mind-set is, “I might give to your cause, but what’s mine is mine.”

Some have blamed FDR since he began the government welfare program, but I have to wonder if the reason the program was deemed necessary was not just because of the depression but perhaps people had already started becoming selfish.  I don’t know.  I’m glad to say that was before my time.

The issue we have now is we have become accustomed to being taken care of by the government and taking ownership when we are blessed with possessions.  Can we ever get back to the mind-set of the early Christians described in the book of Acts?

News Out Of Context

In Christian circles, you often hear the phrase “scripture taken out of context.” It refers to people picking out certain scriptures for interpretation without considering other verses on the topic or the circumstances at hand.

Similar deceptions happen elsewhere like in news media. Just this week I realized I had been deceived by a news story occurring close to home. Right after the particular incident occurred, a local station aired a video clip of police officers beating up an assailant who had been thrown from his car during a high-speed chase and was lying unconscious on the ground.

My husband and I agreed the officers were out of line and should be punished. This week the officers were acquitted of any wrong doing, and upon reading the headline, I thought, how on earth could anyone say they did not use unnecessary force. It wasn’t until this morning when a popular radio show took the time to air the whole story that I understood what really happened, and that the officers did the right thing.

Unfortunately I have come to expect to be deceived by mainstream national media, but the local media in Alabama? Why did they choose to show only the part of the video that made the situation look like a previous event in Los Angeles? Why not show the assailant running over another policeman and speeding through high traffic areas endangering many others? Why did they take media out of context to deceive the public? Just one more example that we should seek all the facts before passing judgement. Fortunately the court did that in this case.

We Don’t Know What We Believe

Cropped from a photo of predominantly Glenn Be...

Image via Wikipedia

Two good articles here and here on Mormons and Christianity and the dangers of Christians sided up too closely with the likes a Glenn Beck.

Perhaps years of poor discipleship and watered down preaching have gotten us to this point. Our churches are full of people (members) who don’t know what they believe. Combine that with a society that preaches tolerance at every turn, and well…

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