Christians Gather in Jerusalem to Show Support for Israel

Some 5,000 Christians from 100 nations marched through the streets of Jerusalem on Tuesday to show their solidarity with the nation of Israel. March participants waved Zionist banners and flags, while others wore T-shirts that read “Jerusalem United” as part of a campaign responding to political pressure on Israel to stop construction in the largely Arab eastern part of the city. The Jerusalem March is part of the 30th annual Feast of Tabernacles being held this week in Israel, an event hosted by the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem.

Nearly 1 in 4 people worldwide is Muslim

Nearly one in four people worldwide is Muslim — and they are not necessarily where you might think, according to an extensive new study that aims to map the global Muslim population. There are about 1.57 billion Muslims in the world, representing about 23 percent of the total global population of 6.8 billion. India, a majority-Hindu country, has more Muslims than any country except for Indonesia and Pakistan, and more than twice as many as Egypt. China has more Muslims than Syria. Germany has more Muslims than Lebanon. And Russia has more Muslims than Jordan and Libya put together. Nearly two out of three of the world’s Muslims are in Asia. The Middle East and north Africa, which together are home to about one in five of the world’s Muslims, trail a very distant second. There are about 2.25 billion Christians, based on projections from the 2005 World Religions Database.

  • Muslims are promoting population growth while Western nations are experiencing fertility rates below maintenance levels. Unfortunately, a majority of those who call themselves Christian are not true born-again believers, so it’s possible that Muslims are the majority now.

D.C. Latest Marriage Battlefield

The nation’s capital is the latest battleground in the fight over same-sex marriage. The council introduced a gay marriage bill Tuesday. Sunday, activists will march in Washington, calling for federal legislation to establish rights of gays and lesbians from housing and job discrimination to marriage. Ten of Washington’s 13 council members support the gay marriage measure. Passage could come as early as December. Twelve states and the District of Columbia allow gay people to register for civil unions or domestic partnerships, but they don’t get all the benefits married people have. California’s state Supreme Court legalized gay marriage in May 2008, but six months later, voters amended the state constitution to ban it.

  • Destruction of the family and God’s natural order is Satan’s key strategy

House Votes to Extend Hate Crimes to Cover Gays

The House voted Thursday to make it a federal crime to assault people because of their sexual orientation, significantly expanding the hate crimes law enacted in the days after Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination in 1968. With expected passage by the Senate, federal prosecutors will for the first time be able to intervene in cases of violence perpetrated against gays. Civil rights groups and their Democratic allies have been trying for more than a decade to broaden the reach of hate crimes law. This time it appears they will succeed. The measure is attached to a must-pass $680 billion defense policy bill and President Barack Obama— unlike President George W. Bush— is a strong supporter.

  • What seems innocuous on the surface becomes another tool to persecute Christians

Obama Pandering’ to Homosexual Activists Saturday

The president of an organization dedicated to exposing the homosexual activist agenda believes President Barack Obama will alienate many Americans when he speaks this weekend at a meeting of the largest homosexual-rights group in the nation. On Saturday night, Obama will deliver the keynote address at the 13th annual National Dinner in Washington, DC — an annual event organized by the Human Rights Campaign. Peter LaBarbera, president of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, says it is clear President Obama is trying to appease homosexual activists, many of whom have been vocal about their disappointment with the chief executive. “The problem with having the homosexual lobby as an ally is that they’re very loud and obnoxious — and if they don’t get their way immediately, they start carping and complaining,” says LaBarbera. “But the further and faster Obama moves on the gay agenda, the more he will alienate mainstream and middle-of-the-road Americans.” LaBarbera points out that HRC has “Bible studies” online that claim homosexuality is not sinful. Among those studies is one HRC says is designed to train individuals to “move people of faith and congregations from acceptance to public advocacy.”

Atheists Say Prayer Makes Them Physically Sick

Atheists recruited to be part of a lawsuit that is trying to rid government ceremonies such as the inauguration of a president of any invocation or other prayer have claimed they are made physically ill by prayer. The lawsuit was filed before President Obama’s inauguration and subsequently was dismissed at the district court level. Briefs now are being submitted to the appeals court in plaintiffs’ hopes the case will be reopened.

  • Of course it makes them sick. That’s the typical demonic reaction to anything having to do with the One True God and Jesus Christ our Savior.

Obama Wins Noble Peace Prize

President Obama has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. The surprise announcement came as Obama, whose achievements during his first nine months in the White House have been largely domestic, is wrestling with perhaps his biggest foreign policy challenge: Afghanistan. Obama has yet to achieve major breakthroughs on the many international efforts he has undertaken: drawing down U.S. involvement in Iraq and beefing it up in Afghanistan, reaching peace in the Middle East, forcing Iran to forego its nuclear program, resetting relations with Russia, improving relations with the Muslim world or reducing the world’s supply of nuclear arms. The Norwegian Nobel Committee picked the 48-year-old president from 205 nominees for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.

  • Ridiculous. Obama hasn’t accomplished anything yet. This shows clearly that the Noble committee is run by the New World (Dis)Order folks.

Justices Appear Divided Over Cross on Park Land

Supreme Court arguments over a cross at a national preserve in California turned tense Wednesday, revealing the divisions among justices regarding religious symbols on public grounds. Though the legal question before the court Wednesday was narrow, it showcased familiar ideological divisions between conservatives such as Scalia and liberals such as Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The case involves a memorial that dates to 1934 when the Veterans of Foreign Wars erected a cross at Sunrise Rock in San Bernardino County. The land is now part of the Mojave National Preserve and under the authority of the National Park Service.

The cross structure at the Sunrise Rock outcropping has been replaced several times and the current cross, put up in 1998, is about 5 feet tall. In 2001, Frank Buono, a former park service worker, sued the U.S. government, objecting because it allowed the cross but no other religious symbols at the site. Park officials had rejected a request for a Buddhist shrine near the cross. Lower federal courts ruled that the cross at the national preserve violated the required constitutional separation of church and state under the First Amendment. A judge ordered the cross taken down; it has been covered over during the appeal. Congress designated the cross a national memorial and passed a law in 2004 calling for the transfer of the land on which the cross sits to the VFW in exchange for a privately owned parcel elsewhere in the preserve.

  • Are we, or are we not, a Christian nation? That’s the root question. Our secular government pretends that we’re not and joins with Satan in destroying all things Christian

Health Bill Projected at $829B

A landmark health care bill crafted by a key Senate committee would cost less than an earlier projection and would provide insurance to 94% of Americans, an independent congressional agency said Thursday. The Senate Finance Committee’s health care bill would cost $829 billion over a decade and would insure 29 million people who wouldn’t otherwise have coverage, according to the Congressional Budget Office estimate. The analysis clears the way for the committee to vote on the bill as early as this week. Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, criticized the bill for “hundreds of billions of dollars” in taxes and fees. It “spends nearly $1 trillion and still leaves 25 million people” uninsured. The compromise bill, which is the product of months-long, bipartisan talks, is the least expensive of all the health care measures in Congress and is the only version that doesn’t include a government-run insurance program.

Republican Gov. Jan Brewer on Wednesday warned that health-care reform pushed by congressional Democrats figures to increase costs borne by states, creating a “devastating” situation for Arizona and other states already teetering on financial collapse. With Arizona government already facing a $1.5 billion budget shortfall for the remainder of this year, Brewer called it “incomprehensible that Congress is contemplating an enormous unfunded entitlement mandate on the states.” Brewer’s concerns mirror those of more than a dozen of her fellow Republican governors. Their chief concern, expanding who is eligible for Medicaid, would force cash-strapped states to either cut programs in other areas or raise taxes, the governors say. Senate leaders on Thursday announced a climactic Finance Committee vote next week on health care legislation.

  • $829 billion is still a lot of money we don’t have. Just like some individuals careening toward bankruptcy who go on a spending spree beforehand, perhaps that’s the underlying strategy here. Regardless, government estimates of cost, no matter how “independent,” are usually much lower than actual.

Wide Health Gaps Among States

A new “scorecard” lists “shockingly wide variations” among the states when it comes to the health of their residents, says the president of the Commonwealth Fund, which compared such factors as access to care, insurance coverage and avoidable hospital admissions. Overall, Vermont ranked No. 1 and Mississippi came in last. In some measures of health status, the top state’s performance was double or triple that of the bottom state’s, the Commonwealth Fund found. The gap was especially wide in the percentage of adults ages 18 to 64 who lacked health insurance. In Massachusetts, which has a universal health insurance program, only 7.2% of its residents that age were uninsured. In Texas, nearly a third, or 31.5%, were. Improving the performance of all states to the levels achieved by the best states could save thousands of lives and billions of dollars, according to the “Commonwealth Fund State Scorecard on Health System Performance.”

  • There is a core issue here that needs to be resolved. The Constitution proclaimed states’ rights, implicitly recognizing that there would well be differences among the states. But the Federal Government wants total control over virtually all significant matters, in violation of the Constitution. It’s time to stand up for the Constitution again and champion states rights. If you live in Texas and want universal health care move to Massachusetts. Competition among states, must as in business, is a good thing.

Swine H1N1 Flu

As the first wave of swine flu vaccine crosses the country, more than a third of parents don’t want their kids vaccinated, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll. Some parents say they are concerned about side effects from the new vaccine — even though nothing serious has turned up in tests so far — while others say swine flu doesn’t amount to any greater health threat than seasonal flu.

A new government study shows that one quarter of Americans who were sick enough to be hospitalized with swine flu last spring wound up needing intensive care, and 7% of them died. Health experts say that is a little higher than with ordinary seasonal flu. They say the biggest difference is that nearly half of those hospitalized with the new swine flu have been children and teens. Flu usually strikes hardest in the elderly.

Jobless Claims Fall More than Expected

The number of workers filing new claims for jobless insurance fell more-than-expected to a nine-month low last week, according to a government report Thursday that suggested the labor market is healing despite a setback in September. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 33,000 to a seasonally adjusted 521,000 in the week ended Oct.3, the lowest since early January, the Labor Department said. The four-week moving average for new claims fell 9,000 to 539,750 last week, declining for a fifth straight week. The number of people collecting long-term unemployment benefits fell 72,000 to 6.04 million in the week ended Sept. 26th. That was the lowest level since late March.

Economic News

The U.S. trade deficit unexpectedly narrowed in August as exports posted a small gain, while imports fell on a big drop in demand for foreign oil. The Commerce Department said Friday that the trade deficit declined 3.5% to $30.7 billion. Oil prices shot up, but the volume of shipments dropped sharply in August. For August, exports of goods and services edged up 0.2% to $28.2 billion, the fourth straight gain.

A federal program that has cut mortgage payments for more than 500,000 homeowners since spring is falling well short of what’s needed to fix the nation’s foreclosure crisis, warns a congressional panel’s report Friday. “We’re concerned that not enough foreclosures will be prevented,” said Elizabeth Warren, who chairs the Congressional Oversight Panel for the $700 billion financial bailout program approved last year.

In a sign that more banks are under great pressure from the recession, 34 financial institutions did not pay their quarterly dividends in August to the Treasury on funds obtained under the Troubled Asset Relief Fund (TARP). The number almost doubled from 19 in May when payments were last made, and also raised questions about Treasury’s judgment in approving these banks as “healthy,” a necessary step for them to get TARP funding.

Consumers reduced their borrowing for the seventh straight month in August, as households worked to pay off debt and banks reduced credit card limits. Americans are saving more and borrowing less as widespread job losses, stagnant wages and dwindling home values have spurred a move to greater frugality. While that’s a positive trend in the long run, economists say, it can weaken the fledgling recovery as consumer spending powers about 70% of the economy.

  • Consumers are doing what the government should be doing. Instead, massive debt will cause a disastrous depression after a brief economic respite.

Deep budget cuts will lead the Arizona Department of Transportation to close 12 Motor Vehicle Division offices and 13 highway rest stops and will delay $370 million in construction projects. ADOT on Thursday released its plan to close up a $40 million budget shortfall that resulted from cuts by the Legislature and drops in gasoline-tax and vehicle- registration revenue.

U.N. a Mess

How good is the United Nations at reforming itself? Not good at all, according to a lengthy study this year by U.N. investigators of a grandiose, five-year effort to streamline and coordinate the performance of a $778 million U.N. bureaucracy that is supposed to do what diplomats like to do best: hold meetings. According to the report, the bureaucracy’s reform effort so far has been a near-total failure. Distributed to U.N. members in advance of the September opening of the General Assembly, the 24-page evaluation report was prepared by members of the U.N.’s watchdog Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS). The investigators didn’t discover any cost savings as a result of the global reform effort. Nor, the report continued, was there any evidence that successive top U.N. managers had done much to change the situation. Just as disturbingly, the inspectors declared that they were “unable to vouch for the accuracy and veracity of data” given to them by the conference bureaucracy for evaluation.

  • A foreshadowing of what global government will look like.

Israel

Israel‘s foreign minister declared Thursday that there is no chance of reaching a final accord with the Palestinians any time soon, casting a pall over the U.S. Mideast envoy’s latest effort to get peace talks moving again. Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told Israel Radio on Thursday that anyone who thinks the two sides can soon reach a deal ending their decades-old conflict “doesn’t understand the situation and is spreading delusions.”

Iraq

Iraq‘s government payroll has become so heavy with soldiers and police that it’s now hindering reconstruction, Iraq’s prime minister warned Wednesday, raising the possibility of security force cutbacks just as U.S. combat troops are pulling out. It’s doubtful whether Nouri al-Maliki would ever slash too deeply into Iraq’s police and military with U.S. forces due to end combat missions next August. But it may reflect shifting priorities as violence eases and the government faces increased demands to spend money on rebuilding roads, electrical grids and other services crippled from years of war and neglect.

Afghanistan

A powerful car bomb exploded outside the Indian Embassy in the busy center of Afghanistan‘s capital early Thursday, killing at least 12 people, destroying vehicles and blowing off the walls of shops Eleven of the dead were civilians and one was an Afghan police officer, the Interior Ministry said in a statement. At least 84 people, including members of Afghan security forces, were wounded in the attack, which struck a shop-lined road between the Indian Embassy and the Interior Ministry.

Insurgents fought their way inside an American base in Afghanistan last weekend in a rare security breach before they were driven back under heavy fire during the deadliest battle for U.S. troops in more than a year, a U.S. official said Wednesday. The bold assault raised serious questions about the security of thinly manned outposts spread across the troubled nation’s volatile border region with Pakistan, and reflects growing insurgent resolve.

Pakistan

A suicide bomber blew up his vehicle near a crowded market in northwestern Pakistan on Friday, killing 49 people and pushing the country closer to an offensive against militants in their main stronghold along the Afghan border. The attack, which wounded more than 100 people in Peshawar, was Pakistan’s deadliest in six months and was a reminder of the ability of insurgents to strike in major cities despite operations against them and the death of their leader in a U.S. missile strike.

Philippines

The recent deaths of two U.S. troops in a roadside bomb attack in the Philippines has drawn attention to a little-known, but increasingly perilous, front in global counterterrorism efforts. About 600 U.S. troops have been stationed in the Philippines since shortly after 9/11, helping the government battle an Islamic extremist group known as Abu Sayyaf. The group, which the Pentagon says has ties with al-Qaeda and other regional terrorist organizations, has just a few hundred members but has carried out numerous attacks on Filipinos and foreigners in the south in recent years. The Sept. 29 roadside bomb attack, which also killed a Filipino marine, was the first of its kind against U.S. troops operating in the Philippines.

Warships Ward Off Somali Pirates

The number of ships captured by pirates off the coast of Somalia has dropped dramatically in the past two months because of the presence of an international flotilla of warships plying the waters there and a new willingness on the part of merchant vessels to defend themselves. Military and shipping officials expected a spike in attacks when the monsoon season ended in early August, but there has only been one ship captured since then. In August and September last year, pirates seized 16 ships, Navy records show. In the same period this year, no ships were seized.

Earthquakes

For the fourth time in less than 11 hours, a major earthquake rocked the South Pacific Ocean near the island nation of Vanuatu on Thursday, the U.S. Geological Survey reported. They were part of a series of 16 moderate-to-major quakes that rattled the region over the same period. There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

Weather

A powerful typhoon slammed into Japan on Thursday, damaging buildings and roads, halting train service and canceling hundreds of flights as it swept across the country. One man died and dozens were reported injured. Typhoon Melor hit the country’s main island early Thursday with strong winds. The storm flooded roads and homes, toppled trees and power lines, blew over trucks on highways and heavily damaged some buildings.

Rescuers struggled through mud and pounding rain Friday to clear mountain roads and retrieve more than 160 bodies from dozens of landslides that buried villages and cut off towns in the rain-soaked northern Philippines. The latest calamity brought the death toll to more than 450 from the Philippines’ worst flooding in 40 years after back-to-back storms started pounding the country’s north on Sept. 26.

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