Utter US Failure in Afghanistan
Foreign Policy wrote on February 23:
“If observers had any doubts about the failure of the U.S. counterinsurgency strategy in Afghanistan, the past several days should have put them to rest. Since Feb. 21, anti-U.S. protests have erupted in virtually every major Afghan city over the revelation that American personnel had burned Qurans at Bagram Airfield, the largest U.S. installation in the country. The demonstrations have at times turned violent… This wave of protest is just the latest example of how the United States has botched its attempt to win ‘hearts and minds’ in Afghanistan…
“But that’s not the message you would hear from U.S. officials… public statements made from podiums in Washington and Kabul bear little resemblance to the reality of the Afghan war… the U.S. military leadership’s glowing descriptions of progress against the Taliban insurgency did not jibe with the accounts of American soldiers on the front lines of the war… U.S. officials have so thoroughly misinformed the American public ‘that the truth has become unrecognizable’ and ‘deception [has] reach[ed] an intolerable low’ [according to inside reports of Lt. Col. Daniel L. Davis]…
“U.S. officials work to spin a failing war as a success story… As Davis wrote, Gen. David Petraeus’s testimony to the Senate Armed Forces Committee on March 15, 2011, is a textbook example of how the military misled the U.S. public… American troops are also increasingly cynical about the mission to prop up the profoundly corrupt Afghan government. Working day in and day out with Afghan officials whom they knew often funneled American taxpayer dollars to the Taliban, U.S. soldiers and civilian officials were guaranteed to experience cognitive dissonance…”
WorldNetDaily wrote on February 29:
“In a development that could chill the dedication of every soldier in the field, the U.S. government has refused to deny reports by the government of Afghanistan that NATO has agreed to have the soldiers who burned copies of the Quran face trial…
“It appears that the soldiers may not have violated Islamic law at all by their burning of the Qurans. In a PBS interview, Imam Jihad Turk, director of religious affairs at the Islamic Center of Southern California, said it was acceptable to burn the Quran if it was in a state of ‘disrepair.’ ‘When Muslims want to respectfully dispose of a text of the Quran that is no longer usable, we will burn it…’”
To please fanatical fundamentalist Afghans who have murdered American soldiers in “retaliation,” by now turning some US soldiers over to the Afghan government for trial would be an absolute outcry and constitute total derogation and dereliction of US authority.
The USA Is in DEEP Financial Trouble – Per Capita Government Debt Worse Than Greece
The Weekly Standard wrote on February 23:
“The office of Senator Jeff Sessions, ranking member on the Senate Budget Committee, sends along [a] chart, showing that ‘America’s Per Capita Government Debt [Is] Worse Than Greece,’ as well as Ireland, Italy, France, Portugal, and Spain…”
Sky-Rocketing Personal Debts
The New York Post wrote on February 26:
“More American households are falling back into the debt hole, this time without the safety net of home values to help bail them out… Last year, total US consumer debt reached its highest point in a decade… In December 2011, the total consumer debt… rose by some 9.3 percent to $2.498 trillion… These numbers… mean that many middle-class Americans are taking big risks. In a weak economy with high unemployment… many people with big card balances become vulnerable to financial catastrophe.”
Terrible Prospects of Rising Gas Prices
Reuters reported on February 26:
“A jump in energy prices is jamming the slow-turning cogs of an economic recovery in the West, but that may be nothing compared to the economic shock an Israeli attack on Iran would cause.
“Oil rose to a 10-month high above $125 a barrel Friday, prompting responses from policymakers around the world including U.S. President Barack Obama, watching U.S. gasoline prices follow crude to push toward $4 a gallon in an election year.”
More Bad News—Now Rising Water Bills
The Examiner wrote on February 27:
“First high gas prices, now water. A shocking new report about the nation’s crumbling drinking water system says that Americans should expect their bills to double or triple to cover repairs just to keep their faucets pouring. That means adding up to $900 a year more for water, nearly equal the amount of the newly extended payroll tax cut… Families can expect to pay at least $300-$550 more for water in taxes and fees just to keep their current systems operating. Add growth and improved systems, and that bill jumps to $900 for a family of three… Currently, Americans pay about $400 a month in water taxes and fees…”
Economist Warns—Recession Unavoidable
CNN wrote on February 24:
“While most economists have stopped worrying that the U.S. will fall into a double-dip recession, one influential economist maintains his position that the nation won’t be able to avoid a new downturn. Lakshman Achuthan, co-founder of the Economic Cycle Research Institute, said on Friday that his research firm is sticking with the forecast it made in September: A new recession is inevitable…
“ECRI is one of the more widely respected firms on economic recessions, as it has never been wrong when forecasting that a recession would start, or failed to predict a recession well before it was widely accepted. Achuthan predicts the recession will happen even without a new shock to the economy, such as a spike in oil and gas prices… If those things occur, he says they will simply make an inevitable recession more painful. In fact, Achuthan said data gathered since his September forecast only confirms his view that economic growth has slowed to such a degree that a downturn is now unavoidable, likely by late summer…
“Achuthan’s views are not widely accepted… But more than 50 years of economic data followed by his firm has shown him that when underlying growth slows to this degree, a recession always follows.”
More “Doomsayers” Give Grim Warnings of Coming Crash
USA Today wrote on February 27:
“Behind the mainstream Wall Street happy talk about more stable financial markets and an improving economy are grim warnings of tough times ahead from a small cadre of doomsayers who warn that the worst of the financial crisis is still to come. Harry Dent, author of the new book The Great Crash Ahead, says another stock market crash is coming due to a bad ending to the global debt bubble… [a] crash is coming in 2013 or 2014, he warns. ‘This will be a repeat of 2008-09, only bigger, when it finally hits…’
“Gerald Celente, a trend forecaster at the Trends Research Institute, says Americans should brace themselves for an ‘economic 9/11’ due to policymakers’ inability to solve the world’s financial and economic woes. The coming meltdown, he predicts, will lead to growing social unrest and anti-government sentiment, a U.S. dollar with far less purchasing power and more people out of work. Celente won’t rule out another financial panic that could spark enough fear to cause a run on the nation’s banks by depositors. That risk could cause the government to invoke ‘economic martial law’ and call a ‘bank holiday’ and close banks as it did during the Great Depression…
“Robert Prechter, author of Conquer the Crash, first published in 2002 and updated in 2009, is still bearish. He says today’s economy has similarities to the Great Depression and warns that 1930s-style deflation is still poised to cause financial havoc. Prechter predicts that the major U.S. stock indexes, such as the Dow Jones industrials and Standard & Poor’s 500, will plunge below their bear market lows hit in March 2009 during the last financial crisis. The brief recovery will fail as it did in the 1930s, he says. If he’s right, stocks would lose more than half of their value. These dire forecasts differ sharply with the brighter outlooks being espoused by the bulls, or optimists, on Wall Street. Recent stock performance and fresh readings on the economy also suggest a future that is less gloomy than the doomsayers predict.”
Sadly, as the Bible clearly shows, the “bulls” or optimists on Wall Street are wrong, and the “doomsayers” are correct. But as the next articles show, Britain is facing equally tough times.
British Government Out of Money
The Telegraph reported on February 27:
“In a stark warning ahead of next month’s Budget, the [British] Chancellor said there was little the Coalition could do to stimulate the economy. Mr Osborne made it clear that due to the [perilous] state of the public finances the best hope for economic growth was to encourage businesses to flourish and hire more workers. ‘The British Government has run out of money because all the money was spent in the good years,’ the Chancellor said. ‘The money and the investment and the jobs need to come from the private sector.’”
New Virus Threatens Survival of Many British Farms
The Telegraph reported on February 27:
“Thousands of lambs have been killed by a new virus that is threatening the survival of many British farms. The Schmallenberg virus causes lambs to be born dead or with serious deformities such as fused limbs and twisted necks, which mean they cannot survive. Scientists are urgently trying to find out how the disease, which also affects cattle, spreads and how to fight it, as the number of farms affected increases by the day. So far, 74 farms across southern and eastern England have been hit by the virus, which arrived in this country in January. A thousand farms in Europe have reported cases since the first signs of the virus were seen in the German town of Schmallenberg last summer.
“The National Farmers Union has called it a potential ‘catastrophe’ and warned farmers to be vigilant. ‘This is a ticking time bomb,’ said Alastair Mackintosh, of the NFU… Infected ewes do not show any symptoms of the virus until they give birth, with horrific results…
“Farmers fear the disease may spread to larger flocks in the north of England, Wales and Scotland. In Europe, Germany, Holland and France have suffered worst, while recent cases have been reported in Italy and Luxembourg… There are also fears that the virus may be seen later this year among cows, which have a longer gestation period… there is no vaccine, and Defra says a ban on imports would not work, because the disease ‘is already here’…
“The AHVLA identifies Schmallenberg as one of a group of viruses ‘typically primarily spread by biting insect vectors, such as midges and mosquitoes, although the routes of Schmallenberg virus transmission have not yet been confirmed. The potential for direct transmission (ie direct from one animal to another) is therefore, as yet, unknown.’”
The economic problems should not be underestimated, either. The Telegraph wrote:
“On the Continent, some farms have lost half of their lambs. So far the worst hit in Britain have lost 20 per cent… Approximately 16 million lambs are born in Britain every year and sell at market for about £100 each. The effect of the disease on farms that are already struggling in the downturn could be severe.
“‘For any business to lose 20 per cent of your stock would be a huge blow… For a farmer to lose 20 per cent of your flock is catastrophic. If it was 50 per cent you would be put out of action…’ [said Alastair Mackintosh, of the National Farmers Union].”
German Parliament Approves Greek Bailout Against the Will of the People
BBC News reported on February 27:
“German MPs have voted by 496 to 90 to back the second EU/IMF bailout for Greece. Chancellor Angela Merkel had urged them to back the deal, while conceding there was ‘no 100% guarantee’ it would work… Germany will have to pay more than any other country for the 130bn euro ($173bn; £110bn) package, agreed by eurozone states last week. Although the Bundestag (lower house) had the power to block the bailout, it was always expected to go through because of the support of two opposition parties, the Social Democrats (SPD) and Greens…
“Under the front-page headline ‘Stop’, Germany’s mass circulation Bild newspaper made a direct appeal to parliament: ‘Don’t keep on going the wrong way.’ An opinion poll for Bild’s Sunday edition suggested that 62% of those surveyed wanted MPs to vote against the package… Mrs Merkel told the Bundestag that she was aware that people were concerned that Greece was a ‘hopeless case’ and that the eurozone would be better off without it. But she had come to the conclusion that ‘the opportunities of this new package outweighed the risks. No-one can predict what the repercussions of a disorderly default would be for all of us and also for the people of Germany.’”
Bild wrote on February 27:
“Against its better judgment, Europe is pouring money into a bottomless barrel. Europe can only master this crisis if it does what most experts have long been demanding. The Greek economy can only become competitive and resume growth with its own currency — not with the strong euro. Continuing with the old recipes won’t work. That is why today’s parliamentary vote [is] bad for Greece, bad for Germany and bad for Europe.”
The Berliner Zeitung wrote on February 27:
“Let’s remain realistic. Greece won’t manage to get back on its feet even with the second bailout package. The planned debt cut won’t be enough, the reforms aren’t getting underway and the country is breaking down under the weight of the austerity programs… A Greek exit from the euro zone would not end the EU’s solidarity with Greece. That’s because Greece could still count on help from its EU partners. The rescue could end up being cheaper and — far more importantly — less painful for the Greeks.”
Der Spiegel Online added on February 27:
“In a slight setback for Angela Merkel, the chancellor failed to secure an absolute majority within her own government coalition. A total of 304 members of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), its Bavarian sister party the Christian Social Union (CSU) and the Free Democratic Party (FDP) voted in favor of the bailout, but 311 were required for a majority. Within the CDU/CSU bloc, 13 politicians rejected the bailout, with four members of the FDP joining them to oppose it. Ultimately, Merkel had to rely on opposition support.”
One must ask how long the German Parliament and Government can proceed as they do in light of growing opposition from the people. And as the next article shows, the criticism and verbal attacks on the “German villain” will not convince many Germans that continuing to help those ungrateful countries is the best course of action.
Germany—The New Villain
Der Spiegel Online wrote on February 27:
“The German parliament… approve[d] a new multibillion euro bailout package for Greece on Monday, but instead of thanks, southern Europeans are expressing their dislike of us. Germans will have to get used to their new role: We have become the Americans of Europe…
“Sentiment towards the Germans isn’t very good… right now. Hardly a day goes by without Chancellor Angela Merkel being depicted in a Nazi uniform somewhere. Swastikas are a common sight as well. It doesn’t seem to help at all that we faithfully approve one aid package after the other… A good deal of the €130 billion [which were] approved by the German parliament on Monday will never be seen again. But if you read the editorial pages of newspapers in the crisis regions, for whom this money is intended, you would be led to believe that we are out to achieve what our grandfathers failed to do 70 years ago…
“It won’t be long before they start burning German flags. But wait, they’re already doing that. Previously we had only known that from Arab countries, where the youth would take every opportunity to run through the streets to rage against that great Satan, the USA. But that’s how things go when others consider a country to be too successful, too self-confident and too strong. We’ve now become the Americans of Europe. The role reversal won’t be an easy one either — it is already safe to say that today. We Germans are accustomed to having people admire us for our efficiency and industriousness — and not to hate us for it.
“But before we complain too much about all this ingratitude, we should remind ourselves that we ourselves spent years passing the buck. As long as the global villain was America, the Germans joined in when it came to feeling good at the expense of others. The Americans also had every reason to expect a little more gratitude — after all, it was their soldiers who had to intervene when a dictator somewhere lived out his bloody fantasies while the international community stood by wringing its hands.
“People came to secretly rely on the USA as a global cop in the same way that Germany’s neighbors are now expecting the Germans to save the euro. Unfortunately, however, the feeling of inferiority can be just as vicious as that of superiority. Of course, one can try to make oneself seem smaller than one really is. But this self-denial doesn’t work. The Americans weren’t much more popular under Jimmy Carter than they were under Ronald Reagan… Obama’s election also didn’t do a whole lot to help the US’ image in the longer term. A giant can’t conceal his size for long… We will probably just have to get used to the fact that, for a time, Germany won’t be very popular in some countries in Europe…”
It is interesting that Germany is now described negatively as the “America of Europe”—showing the deep and ongoing antagonism of many Europeans towards America. These feelings are neither grateful nor justified.
“The Evil Spirits of the Past… Can Always Return”
Der Spiegel Online wrote on February 28:
“Former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl, one of the architects of the European single currency, has stepped into the German debate about the wisdom of providing Greece with further aid. On Tuesday, he urged Germany to stay committed to European unity, which he said remained a matter of war and peace, even 67 years after the end of World War II… Kohl repeated his mantra that the euro was about nothing less than preventing war…
“‘The evil spirits of the past have by no means been banished, they can always return. That means: Europe remains a question of war and peace and the desire for peace remains the driving force behind European integration,’ wrote Kohl… ‘Europe is our future,’ Kohl wrote. ‘There is no alternative to Europe. We have every reason to be optimistic that our Europe will emerge strengthened from this current crisis — if we want it to. Let us not be misled.’”
Germany the Unquestioned Boss of Europe
The Los Angeles Times wrote on February 27:
“For nearly 70 years, Germany’s grand national ambition has basically been not to have one. After losing two world wars and carrying out a horrific genocide, the country set to working its way back into the European fold, content to focus on rebuilding its shattered economy while dutifully leaving continental leadership to the likes of France. The plan has been a roaring success — so much so that, in one of history’s great ironies, Germany today finds itself right back where it wasn’t supposed to be: dominating Europe.
“As the region’s richest, most populous nation, with control over purse strings rather than panzers, Germany is the unquestioned boss amid Europe’s stubborn debt crisis and deepening economic malaise… Potentially the fate of the global economy now lies in Germany’s hands as it heads the effort to keep heavily indebted Greece (where people mutter about a ‘Fourth Reich’) from going under and pulling down other Eurozone countries with it. On Monday, Chancellor Angela Merkel successfully steered approval for a $175-billion Greek bailout through the German Parliament, a deeply divisive measure for German taxpayers who will foot more than half the bill.
“Even so, President Obama and other world leaders are urging Germany to contribute even more to a permanent European bailout fund that might stanch the debt crisis…
“The leadership role thrust onto Germany is turning out to be a minefield in many ways, complicated by the nation’s past. Berlin is caught in a classic damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t position, its every move fodder for critics eager to spot signs either of Teutonic belligerence or a failure to exercise power responsibly… The plan that Europe is pursuing to save the euro currency bears an unmistakably German stamp… Despite the growing chorus of detractors and indicators showing that austerity is strangling economic growth in ailing nations, Merkel has refused to yield, and no fellow European leader has been strong enough to overrule her.
“‘She’s the queen of Europe,’ said Josef Joffe, editor of the newspaper Die Zeit. Gone are the days when Germany was considered an economic giant but a political dwarf, as the cliche had it, Joffe said. ‘In an age where economic power suddenly moves to the fore, as it has in the last 18 months, the economic giant also becomes a political giant.’”
Coming–New War in the Middle East…
Fox News wrote on February 25:
“An Israeli pre-emptive attack on Iran’s nuclear sites could draw the U.S. into a new Middle East conflict, a prospect dreaded by a war-weary Pentagon wary of new entanglements. That could mean pressing into service the top tier of American firepower — warplanes, warships, special operations forces and possibly airborne infantry — with unpredictable outcomes in one of the world’s most volatile regions.”
The Guardian wrote on February 25:
“Iran has warned Israel against mounting an attack on its nuclear facilities amid rising international tension over its uranium enrichment programme. General Ahmad Vahidi issued a statement warning Israel that an attack would lead to the collapse of the Jewish state.”
The Economist wrote on February 25:
“The crisis has been a long time coming… Israel has nuclear weapons itself, including submarine-based weapons that could posthumously annihilate any aggressor who destroyed the country. But this deterrent is not enough to stop Israelis from seeing a nuclear Iran as the precursor to a second holocaust. The problem is that military action will not necessarily bring about what Israel wants—and could, in the medium to long term, make matters worse…
“Then there is the American presidential election. Like the Bush administration before it, Barack Obama’s White House sees Iran’s nuclear ambitions as a huge concern. But it worries that the consequences of an attack on Iran, whether by Israel or America, are unpredictable and scary: oil prices would rocket—at least for a while—endangering the economic recovery; allies in the Gulf already shaken by the Arab spring could be further destabilised; jihadist terrorism could be re-energised…
“But the election may give Binyamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, something to bargain with. In the face of a hawkish Republican rival and in front of an electorate that is in parts fiercely pro-Israel, Mr Obama may feel he has to welcome, or even build on, an Israeli fait accompli in a way he would not have done earlier…”
It is so sad that the American election should have any influence on a decision whether or not to go to war—but sadly, in this politically motivated climate, the question of right or wrong far too often escapes the decision-making process. In fact, A-7 News reported on March 1, 2012 that “U.S. military officials say that America is preparing a plan to strike Iranian nuclear targets in the event that sanctions fail to persuade Tehran to halt its hurtle towards atomic development.”
Israel Won’t Inform USA Ahead of Military Action Against Iran
The Associated Press reported on February 27:
“Israeli officials said that if they eventually decide a strike is necessary, they would keep the Americans in the dark to decrease the likelihood that the United States would be held responsible for failing to stop Israel’s potential attack… But the apparent decision to keep the United States in the dark also stems from Israel’s frustration with the White House… they became convinced the Americans would neither take military action, nor go along with unilateral action by Israel against Iran. The Israelis concluded they would have to conduct a strike unilaterally…”
Clashes at the Temple Mount
The Jerusalem Post wrote on February 24:
“A Palestinian protester died after being shot in the chest at the Kalandia checkpoint near Jerusalem as clashes with police beginning at the Temple Mount spread through the area… Security forces used force to disperse hundreds of Muslim worshipers at the Temple Mount on Friday who rioted and threw stones following a tense week in the Old City… A number of youth barricaded themselves inside the mosque during the rioting, and dozens of police who responded to the incident used stun grenades and other riot control methods to disperse the crowd…
“A website called ‘Our Temple Mount’ has publicized a number of events at the Temple Mount encouraging religious Jews to go up to the site in order to exercise Jewish sovereignty over the religious area. The site advocates for destroying any Muslim buildings in order to rebuild the Third Temple…
“On Sunday, a group of approximately 50 Arabs threw stones at Christian tourists and police patrols, prompted by reports in the Jordanian press of more attempts by right-wing activists to ascend to the Temple Mount. Police arrested 24 people during the day on Sunday in connection with the stone throwing…”
Fundamental radicals, including Arabs and Israelis and even some “Christian” organizations, are playing with fire which could ignite the entire region.
North Korea—Cautious Optimism?
Deutsche Welle reported on March 1:
“The sudden agreement between the US and North Korea over its nuclear program was a positive surprise to many, but the reaction in Washington is still cautious… With the new bilateral agreement, North Korea has agreed to stop nuclear testing, stop building long-range missiles and stop enriching uranium, and has promised to allow inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to visit its Yongbyon nuclear research center… The US has taken care to say that the 240,000 tons of humanitarian aid being shipped to North Korea is not a reward for its statement on the nuclear program… few people believe that North Korea really will give up its nuclear ambitions.”
“How Do You Clean Up After a Nuclear Disaster?”
PBS reported on February 28:
“The events last March in Japan couldn’t have presented Japan with a more difficult task. After record-setting earthquake, a massive tsunami and a nuclear disaster comparable in scale only to the 1986 Chernobyl meltdown, how do you wrap your head around making once-vibrant villages habitable again? Where do you even begin?… Currently, there’s a 20 km (12 mile) exclusion zone around Fukushima Daiichi. No one is allowed to live inside it, and workers are bused in at all hours of the day and night to work at the plant. The goal is for the 80,000 or so residents forced to evacuate to eventually be able to return.
“Decontamination has never been done on such a large scale before. The only other nuclear accident to be rated a 7, the highest on the international scale, was Chernobyl in 1986 in Ukraine. In that case, the decision was made to evacuate the area — about 20 miles surrounding the plant — permanently. A protective sarcophagus was built around the plant, which is currently being updated because the original is crumbling…
“First you have to stabilize the nuclear reactors while limiting the release of radioactive materials. In part this requires keeping the nuclear fuel cool, until temperatures in the reactors reach 100 degrees Celsius or below — a point known as ‘cold shutdown.’ Three reactors at Fukushima Daiichi reached this mark last December, though because of leaks, a half-million liters of water is still being pumped in each day.
“Because of the initial flooding after the tsunami, and the gallons and gallons of water injected into the reactors, there was — and likely still is — radioactive water in the reactors. A lot of it…
“Even if Japan’s nuclear crisis is contained, its earthquake and tsunami now seem certain to be, economically speaking, among the worst national disasters in history… [an] estimate right after the disaster placed the cost closer to 25 trillion yen, or $300 billion — four times the cost of cleaning up after Hurricane Katrina. In addition, containing and cleaning any radioactive material could cost $10 billion alone…
“Removing fuel that has melted in the Fukushima Daichii reactors will likely take 25 years. Decommissioning the plant will add another five to 10 years to this process… Japan’s government is currently working to establish long-term storage facilities, which will last about 30 years, but it estimates that their construction will take at least three more years…”
This article is astounding! The amount of time and the cost for this clean-up are staggering. It gives us a glimpse as to the momentous task ahead of us, after Christ has returned, to deal with the nuclear devastation which this world will have brought upon itself.
“Yoga Began as a Sex Cult”
The New York Times wrote on February 27:
“The wholesome image of yoga took a hit in the past few weeks as a rising star of the discipline came tumbling back to earth. After accusations of sexual impropriety with female students, John Friend, the founder of Anusara, one of the world’s fastest-growing styles, told followers that he was stepping down for an indefinite period of ‘self-reflection, therapy and personal retreat’… this is hardly the first time that yoga’s enlightened facade has been cracked by sexual scandal. Why does yoga produce so many philanderers? And why do the resulting uproars leave so many people shocked and distraught?
“One factor is ignorance. Yoga teachers and how-to books seldom mention that the discipline began as a sex cult — an omission that leaves many practitioners open to libidinal surprise. Hatha yoga — the parent of the styles now practiced around the globe — began as a branch of Tantra. In medieval India, Tantra devotees sought to fuse the male and female aspects of the cosmos into a blissful state of consciousness.
“The rites of Tantric cults, while often steeped in symbolism, could also include group and individual sex… Candidates for worship included actresses and prostitutes, as well as the sisters of practitioners. Hatha originated as a way to speed the Tantric agenda. It used poses, deep breathing and stimulating acts — including intercourse — to hasten rapturous bliss. In time, Tantra and Hatha developed bad reputations. The main charge was that practitioners indulged in sexual debauchery under the pretext of spirituality.
“Early in the 20th century, the founders of modern yoga worked hard to remove the Tantric stain… modern practitioners have embraced a whitewashed simulacrum of Hatha. But over the decades, many have discovered from personal experience that the practice can fan the sexual flames…Since the baby boomers discovered yoga, the arousal, sweating, heavy breathing and states of undress that characterize yoga classes have led to predictable results. In 1995, sex between students and teachers became so prevalent that the California Yoga Teachers Association deplored it as immoral and called for high standards…
“If yoga can arouse everyday practitioners, it apparently has similar, if not greater, effects on gurus — often charming extroverts in excellent physical condition, some enthusiastic for veneration…
“Swami Muktananda (1908-82) was an Indian man of great charisma who favored dark glasses and gaudy robes. At the height of his fame, around 1980, he attracted many thousands of devotees — including movie stars and political celebrities — and succeeded in setting up a network of hundreds of ashrams and meditation centers around the globe. He kept his main shrines in California and New York. In late 1981, when a senior aide charged that the venerated yogi was in fact a serial philanderer and sexual hypocrite who used threats of violence to hide his duplicity, Mr. Muktananda defended himself as a persecuted saint, and soon died of heart failure…
“Another case involved Swami Rama (1925-96), a tall man with a strikingly handsome face. In 1994, one of his victims filed a lawsuit charging that he had initiated abuse at his Pennsylvania ashram when she was 19. In 1997, shortly after his death, a jury awarded the woman nearly $2 million in compensatory and punitive damages.
“So, too, former devotees at Kripalu, a Berkshires ashram, won more than $2.5 million after its longtime guru — a man who gave impassioned talks on the spiritual value of chastity — confessed to multiple affairs…”
The article speaks for itself…
Homeschooling in Canada Must Not Tell It as It Is
LifeSiteNews reported on February 28:
“Homeschooling families will soon be forbidden from teaching that homosexual sex is sinful as part of their schooling program, according to the government of Alberta, Canada. Under the province’s Education Act, homeschoolers and religious schools will be banned from ‘disrespecting’ people’s differences… ‘Whatever the nature of schooling – homeschool, private school, Catholic school – we do not tolerate disrespect for differences,’ said Donna McColl, Lukaszuk’s assistant director of communications. ‘You can affirm the family’s ideology in your family life, you just can’t do it as part of your educational study and instruction.’
“…when McColl was asked… to explain the distinction between homeschoolers’ education and their family life, she replied that the question involved ‘real nuances’ and said she would need to get back to reporter with specifics… In 2009, the Alberta Human Rights Act was amended to classify marriage as an institution between two ‘persons,’ rather than a man and a woman.”
Google In Breach of EU Privacy Laws?
BBC News reported on March 1:
“Google… went ahead with the changes despite warnings from the EU earlier this week. Data regulators in France had cast doubt on the legality of the move and launched a Europe-wide investigation. More than 60 sets of guidelines for its individual Google-owned sites were merged into a single policy for all of its services. It means browsing data and web history, which is gathered when a user is signed in with a Google account, can be shared across all of the websites…”
Dawkins and Williams Terribly Wrong
The Telegraph wrote on February 24:
“Richard Dawkins… is regarded as the most famous atheist in the world but last night [he] admitted he could not be sure that God does not exist. He told the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, that he preferred to call himself an agnostic rather than an atheist… For an hour and 20 minutes the two men… discussed ‘The nature of human beings and the question of their ultimate origin’ touching on the meaning of consciousness, the evolution…
“Prof Dawkins told him: ‘What I can’t understand is why you can’t see the extraordinary beauty of the idea that life started from nothing – that is such a staggering, elegant, beautiful thing, why would you want to clutter it up with something so messy as a God?’ Dr Williams replied that he ‘entirely agreed’ with the ‘beauty’ of Prof Dawkins’s argument but added: ‘I’m not talking about God as an extra who you shoehorn on to that’…
“During a wide-ranging discussion the Archbishop also said that he believed that human beings had evolved from non-human ancestors but were nevertheless ‘in the image of God’. He also said that the explanation for the creation of the world in the Book of Genesis could not be taken literally. ‘The writers of the Bible, inspired as I believe they were, they were nonetheless not inspired to do 21st Century physics,’ he said.”
That the leader of the Anglican Church should deny the Genesis account and accept instead the false teaching of the evolution theory shows once more the terrible state of affairs of our “Christian” world, which is rejecting the Word of God so that it can uphold its own traditions. But neither Atheists and Agnostics, nor “Christian” leaders seem to understand that their denial of God’s Word is at least partially responsible for the lack of standards and morals with which we are confronted today. Please view our new StandingWatch program on this often-overlooked connection, titled, “Religious and Scientific Deceptions”
Human Life Begins at Conception
The New American wrote on February 20:
“Lawmakers in Virginia and Oklahoma approved ‘personhood’ legislation last week to recognize that human life begins at conception, drawing praise from pro-life activists and fury from abortion advocates. Analysts say neither of the bills would immediately ban abortions, but a prohibition would kick in if and when the Supreme Court’s Roe vs. Wade ruling is undone…
“Both Colorado and Mississippi held popular elections to decide whether to amend their state constitutions to legally recognize the personhood of unborn children. Those measures failed.
“… state legislatures across America have been taking more and more action in recent years to protect the unborn… Americans overwhelmingly support restrictions on abortion… it appears increasingly likely that America’s four decades of legalized abortion will come to an end sooner or later…”
The question of when human life begins is not just a theoretical concept which can be used, at will, in political campaigns in order to gain votes. It is a fundamentally important question. When human life begins with conception—which it does!—then every act to destroy such conceived life is murder, as it is the killing of helpless innocent human life. This does not only include abortion for ANY reason, but also the taking of contraceptives after conception. It seems that very few agree with God’s Word that the taking of innocent helpless human life is ALWAYS wrong—under ANY circumstance. This truth includes so many facets of life—for instance the killing of innocent civilians in war. Since every war leads to the killing of innocent people, every war, fought by humans, is wrong for that reason alone. This is not only true for aggressive or preemptive wars, but also for so-called defensive wars, even though “Christian” churches may justify those. As no political candidate or governmental leader holds such wide-ranging, godly positions, we feel compelled not to vote for ANY political candidate for THAT reason alone… but there exists a myriad of additional reasons as well.