Category Archives: Jason Tolbert

Ross is out for 2012, will there ever be another Democratic member of House from Arkansas?

The Arkansas Times Blog reported today:

U.S. Mike Ross photo

  • U.S. REP. MIKE ROSS

U.S. Mike Rossof Prescott surprised everyone by scheduling an announcement this morning in Little Rock to say he would not seek a seventh term in Congress in 2012.His statement is on the jump. He said he hadn’t decided yet on a race for governor in 2014, which he’s long been expected to make. But his reference to the race indicates it is very much in his sights.

ROSS NEWS RELEASE

WASHINGTON — U.S. Congressman Mike Ross of Prescott on Monday announced he will not be seeking re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives. Ross, who won re-election in 2010 by 18 points and has no announced opponent, has represented Arkansas’s Fourth Congressional District in Congress since 2001. A fifth generation Arkansan, Ross is a former state senator and former small business owner.

Statement from U.S. Congressman Mike Ross:

Representing my home state of Arkansas in the U.S. Congress for the past eleven years has been a real privilege and honor. It is a job that I take very seriously and one that I love. However, as I reflect on turning 50 this year, I believe it is time for me to begin a new chapter in my life by spending more time with my family and exploring new opportunities here at home in Arkansas.

That’s why I have decided not to seek a seventh term to the United States House of Representatives from Arkansas’s Fourth Congressional District. This was not an easy decision and one that I carefully made after a lot of reflection, thought and prayer.

Last year was a tough political environment to seek re-election. Yet, I won by 18 points—one of the largest margins of any member of Congress in a swing district. The trust and confidence the folks here at home have continually placed in me is something I will never forget. The people of Arkansas’s Fourth Congressional District are good, decent, hard working people and I am proud to serve and represent them in the U.S. Congress.

A lot has changed since I was first elected to the U.S. Congress in 2000. Congressional campaigns have gone from several months in length to never-ending, costing millions of dollars every two years. As a result, fundraising never ends nor do the political attacks. While I have worked hard to bring folks to the middle to craft commonsense solutions to the many problems that confront our nation, Washington is mired in gridlock, gamesmanship and constant partisan bickering. Too many issues and votes are based on partisan politics rather than good public policy. Despite our many challenges, I remain optimistic that America’s best days are still ahead of us.

I never believed that my service in the U.S. Congress should become a permanent career. This seat never belonged to me—it belongs to the people of Arkansas. And I know there are many bright people in Arkansas ready to step up, go to Washington and offer a new generation of leadership. Simply put, it is someone else’s turn to represent our state in the U.S. Congress.

I have many good memories of my service in the U.S. Congress, and we have helped thousands of people. None of this would have been possible without the support of the people here in Arkansas, and for that, my family and I will always be grateful to them.

I look forward to serving out the remainder of my term in the U.S. Congress, which doesn’t end until January 2013. I will continue to work each and every day on behalf of the people I represent, just as I have faithfully tried to do from the beginning.

I have received a lot of encouragement to run for Governor of Arkansas when Governor Beebe’s term ends in 2014. I’ve always been very upfront and honest in the fact that, as a fifth generation Arkansan, I love our state and would like very much to help lead it at some point in the future. Whether I run for Governor in 2014 is a decision I have not yet made and won’t make until sometime after my term in this Congress ends.

__________________________________

Ross will tough to beat in the governor race in 2014. However, I do think that the Republicans will have an excellent chance to capture a fourth Congressional seat in 2012. Will there ever be another Democratic member of the House of Representatives from Arkansas? (In fact if you check out some of the information at the Red Arkansas Blog and you will see that most people view this district as a Republican pick up.)

John Brummett in his article “Ross is running, but I repeat myself,” Arkansas News Bureau, July 26, 2011 noted:

To win, a Democrat will need to be as good a politician as Ross. I can’t identify such a Democrat at present.

At this point I’d give tea party pageanteer Beth Anne Rankin, the Sarah Palin wannabe of Arkansas, a decent shot.

Jason Tolbert reported:

 
With the sudden news from Rep. Mike Ross that he will not seek re-election, potential Republican candidates will quickly emerge.  However, two Republicans have already been busy lining up support behind the scenes before Ross even announced his decision.

Republican Tom Cotton from Dardanelle confirms to the Tolbert Report this morning that he will seek the open seat and is already putting together his team.  Potential donors have confirmed that Cotton is lining up support and may already have over six figures in commitments.  In addition, Cotton has been seen meeting recently with Second District Congressman Tim Griffin who could lend support to Cotton’s campaign.

Cotton was one of the many names considering a run for Senate in 2010 against former Sen. Blanche Lincoln, but ultimately decided against it. Cotton currently works for international consulting firm, McKinsey and Company. A veteran, he also serves in the U.S. Army Reserves. Cotton lives in Yell County, which was part of the Second Congressional District represented by Congressman Griffin. It was moved to the Fourth Congressional Disctrict in the last redistricting process.

In addition, Beth Anne Rankin of Magnolia, former candidate and general election opponent of Mike Ross, has been exploring another run as well.  Rankin is a former Miss Arkansas and worked in former Gov. Mike Huckabee’s administration.  She recently appeared on his Fox News program “Huckabee” cutting her red hair for “Locks of Love” – something she does every few years.  Rankin recieved 40 percent of the vote in 2010 with Ross pulling in 57 percent.

In addition, sources close to State Rep. Lane Jean of Magnolia confirm that he is “strongly considering” getting into the race as well.  Jean was elected to his first term in the Arkansas House in 2010.

Other potential Republicans names mentioned are: State Rep. Matthew Shepherd, former Congressional candidate Glenn Gallas, and Will Rockfeller – the son of the late Lt. Gov. Win Rockfeller.

Other related posts:

Ross is out for 2012, will there ever be another Democratic member of House from Arkansas?

  The Arkansas Times Blog reported today: U.S. REP. MIKE ROSS U.S. Mike Rossof Prescott surprised everyone by scheduling an announcement this morning in Little Rock to say he would not seek a seventh term in Congress in 2012.His statement is on the jump. He said he hadn’t decided yet on a race for governor […]

Mike Ross: The Best at playing politics

HALT:HaltingArkansasLiberalswithTruth.com Arkansas Democrat Rep. Mike Ross Explains Why He Voted For the Health Care Bill in Committee (video from Tolbert Report.com) “I wasn’t sent to Washingon to play politics. I was sent there to do my job.” These are the words of Congressman Mike Ross after he basically got through playing politics and helped pass […]

Is Mike Ross a Conservative who helped pass a Liberal Healthcare Bill?

HALT:HaltingArkansasLiberalswithTruth.com (John Stossel on healthcare bill 7 min) The Republicans are moving now to try and overturn the Obama healthcare act , but no one really gives their efforts much hope. How did President Obama get this healthcare act get passed in the first place. The liberal columnist John Brummett wrote an excellent article on […]

Pro-abortion Ark Times article refuted here (Part 2)

Superbowl commercial with Tim Tebow and Mom.

The Arkansas Times article, “Putting the fetus first: Pro-lifers keep up attack on access, but pro-choice advocates fend off the end to abortion right” by Leslie Newell Peacock is very lengthy but I want to deal with all of it in this new series.

 

click to enlarge ROSE MIMMS: Arkansas Right to Life director unswayed by fears of return of illegal abortion.
  • ROSE MIMMS: Arkansas Right to Life director unswayed by fears of return of illegal abortion.

Rita Sklar, director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas, said,”Women’s bodies are used as a political football and it’s time that stopped.” 

___________________________

Is this debate really about the woman’s body? Does the woman even have the same blood type as the unborn baby? Or is this about a life being snuffed out? Take a look at this moving story that Arkansas abortionist Dr. William Harrison told below about the lady that will soon “finish her doctorate at the University of California at San Francisco.”

I used to write letters to the editor a whole lot back in the 1990’s.  I am pro-life and many times my letters would discuss current political debates, and I got to know several names of people that would often write in response letters to my published letters. One of those individuals was a Dr. William F. Harrison from Fayetteville. Later I found out from reading an article by David Sanders that Dr. Harrison was an abortionist. Dr Harrison died from leukemia on September 24, 2010. Here is a post from Jason Tolbert from July of 2010:

KFSM in Fayetteville is reporting that abortist William Harrison is closing the doors to his abortion clinic in nothwest Arkansas for health reasons. In an ABC News story a few year ago, Harrison said he had performed over 10,000 abortions and was comfortable with the taking of life.

I now write a column for Stephen Media in a spot once held by conservative David J. Sanders who is currently running for the Arkansas House of Representatives.  Sanders shadowed Harrison in his abortion clinic and wrote of series of columns on the experience.  I think these are prehaps Sanders’ best work…

Harrison is sure that what he does is right, but he confessed to the enormous costs that come in his line of work. There were threats against his wife and children and staff. He commented that if he “had known” everything – the threats, the risks – that would take place over the years, he might not have decided to provide abortions.

Some years ago, a 16-year-old daughter of a close friend of the family had gotten pregnant. “Their Baptist minister had advised her parents that she shouldn’t have an abortion and that (if she did) she would regret it the rest of her life. But had I had the choice, at the time, I would have advised (the mother of the teenager) to have that child aborted,” he said as he stared at his desktop.

“Well, she had her baby. She’s as smart as a whip,” he said. Now, years later, that baby is grown and about to finish her doctorate at the University of California at San Francisco.

I asked him if that sent chills up his spine. His response: “Absolutely.”

If you would like to know my the #1 abortionist in the world changed to a pro-life advocate then check out these posts: 

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 11)

ABORTION – THE SILENT SCREAM 1 / Extended, High-Resolution Version (with permission from APF). Republished with Permission from Roy Tidwell of American Portrait Films as long as the following credits are shown: VHS/DVDs Available American Portrait Films Call 1-800-736-4567 http://www.amport.com The Hand of God-Selected Quotes from Bernard N. Nathanson, M.D., Unjust laws exist. Shall we […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 10)

Dr. Bernard N. Nathanson, a leading pro-life advocate and convert to Catholicism, died at the age of 84 on Monday a week ago in his New York home, after a long struggle with cancer. The Hand of God-Selected Quotes from Bernard N. Nathanson, M.D., Chapter 12 is titled To The Thanatoriums, an allusion the Walker […]

On eve of Shutdown Republicans cave on demand concerning eliminating Planned Parenthood Funding

The pro-life position is very important to a great many of the freshmen members of the House of Representatives. As you can see above in the clip from the film series Whatever Happened to the Human Race? by Francis Schaeffer and C. Everett Koop, the unborn baby is a child, but we are treating many […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 9)(Donald Trump changes to pro-life view)

When I think of the things that make me sad concerning this country, the first thing that pops into my mind is our treatment of unborn children. Donald Trump is probably going to run for president of the United States. Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council recently had a conversation with him concerning the […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 8)

My sons Wilson (on left) and Hunter (on right) went to California and visited Yosemite National Park with our friend Sherwood Haisty Jr. March 21-27. Here they are standing in front of the tallest waterfall in North America. The only surviving founding member of NARAL, Dr. Bernard Nathanson gives his testimony of NARAL’s foundation of […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 7) Have you wondered why we have abortion in the USA?

“Jane Roe” or Roe v Wade is now a prolife Christian. She’s recently has done a commercial about it.   _______________________________ I have often wondered why we got to this point in our country’s life and we allow abortion. The answer is found in the words of Schaffer. Philosopher and Theologian, Francis A. Schaeffer has […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 6)

Modern man’s humanist thought has brought us to the point now that many people realize that they could not find final answers and that would lead to despair. Many people then took leaps into the area of non-reason to find some kind of meaning in life. Some people actually tried to look at communism and […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 5)

Modern man’s humanist thought has brought us to the point now that many people realize that they could not find final answers and that would lead to despair. Many people then turned to trying to find answers in the area of non-reason. There were no fixed values and they just held on to the two […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 4)

Richard Land on Abortion part 3 On the Arkansas Times Blog this morning I posted a short pro-life piece and it received this response: We have been over this time and again SalineRepublican, and I think we all know the issue: when does the right of a woman to control her own body yield to […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 3)

Vice Admiral C. Everett Koop, USPHS Surgeon General of the United States Francis Schaeffer Main page Francis Schaeffer and Dr. C. Everett Koop put together this wonderful film series “Whatever happened to the human race?” and my senior class teacher Mark Brink taught us a semester long course on it in 1979. I was so

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 2)

This is such a great video series “The Silent Scream.” I have never seen it until now and I wish I had seen it 30 years ago.  Take a look at the video clip below. I wanted to pass along a portion of the excellent article “Bernard Nathanson: A Life Transformed by the Truth about […]

Abortionist Bernard Nathanson turned pro-life activist (part 1)

Sherwood Haisty is taking my sons Hunter and Wilson to Grace Community Church in the Los Angeles area this morning where Dr. John MacArthur is pastor. They will be attending both Sunday School and Worship. I wanted to pass along a portion of the excellent article “Bernard Nathanson: A Life Transformed by the Truth about

Andrew Breitbart spoke to Little Rock, Arkansas group May 25, 2011 (Part 4,the media world has changed with cable, Fox News, and the web)

Andrew Breibart spoke in Little Rock on May 25, 2011

Andrew Breitbart in Arkansas

The second monthly luncheon with featured speaker Andrew Breitbart was excellent. (Check out the Tolbert Report for more coverage of this event.)

First, we got to hear from Dave Elswick of KARN   who came up with the idea of this luncheon, and then from Teresa Crossland of Americans for Prosperity.

Below is a story Breitbart told at the luncheon today. He had earlier told it on Sean Hannity’s show:

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: Over the last few years, one man has been at the center of some of the biggest and most controversial stories in politics. His websites have helped usher in a new era of conservative investigative journalism.

His name, Andrew Breitbart, and tonight he joins us right here in studio to talk about his brand new book “Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save the World.” We’ve got Breitbart.com, got theBigGovernment.com. We got —

ANDREW BREITBART, AUTHOR, “RIGHTEOUS INDIGNATION”: Big Hollywood —

HANNITY: BigHollywood.com.

BREITBART: We are going to take on education next, go after the teachers and the union organizers.

HANNITY: You want to really save the world?

BREITBART: I do. It is not just me. It is a citizen journalism revolution that’s going on right now and I’m trying to be the pied piper to show you how — in the case of James O’Keefe, he took down ACORN with $1,400 to go city to city to city. The barrier of entry is negligible to have impact in this political environment.

HANNITY: You tell the story. It’s a pretty good story how he walks into your office and he talks about we’re going to take down ACORN and you said, no, no, it is bigger than that. We are going to take down journalism.

BREITBART: Yes, we’re going to take down the mainstream media. I mean, look — explain to me why James O’Keefe or Leila Rose or some of these other heroes of the new media come to me in my basement, instead of going to Katie Couric, NBC or ABC?

Because they know what they are exposing is corruption that is left of center corruption so they come to a guy in a basement. I say, we are going to expose that the media won’t cover this story, because they’re part of what I call the Democrat media complex, the natural alliance of the Democratic Party, liberal politics in the mainstream media.

HANNITY: I used the term in 2008, the media is dead. Media died in 2008, old mainstream media. Well, it is true, right?

BREITBART: Yes.

HANNITY: Look at the NBC, CBS, ABC, they’re contemplating whether they want to keep their nightly newscast on now.

BREITBART: Well, here’s what happened, 20 years ago, Rush Limbaugh comes in the game. He acts as checks and balance. The Matt Drudge comes in 15 years ago and then blogosphere explodes. All we did was ask of the mainstream media was to correct their bias problem.

HANNITY: Add Fox to that —

BREITBART: Of course, but as a result of that, when they wouldn’t correct themselves, citizens in the form of the Tea Party, citizens in the form of Hanna and James and people with video cameras going everywhere said if you are not going to correct yourself, we’re going to create a media in the wake of you incompetency.

And that’s what happening. It’s the most exciting time in the media and unfortunately, the mainstream media so upset about it. It covers it as if we’re the villains out there.

Andrew Breitbart spoke to Little Rock, Arkansas group May 25, 2011 (Part 2, video clips )

Andrew Breibart spoke in Little Rock on May 25, 2011 to a packed room.

The second monthly luncheon with featured speaker Andrew Breitbart was excellent. (Check out the Tolbert Report for more coverage of this event.)

First, we got to hear from Dave Elswick of KARN   who came up with the idea of this luncheon, and then from Teresa Crossland of Americans for Prosperity. Here are some video clips.

Andrew Breitbart in Arkansas Breitbart talks about the Clintons.wmv

Conservative film activist Andrew Breitbart spoke in Little Rock on Wednseday May 25th at the Hilton Hotel. The room was packed with conservative activist and Tea Party members. Breitbart talked about dealing with the liberal media and how the left indoctrinate the public on so many levels. Americans for Prosperity hosted the event.

_____________________________

Andrew Breitbart in Arkansas Media destroying our culture.wmv

Andrew Breitbart chatting before the speech starts.wmv

Andrew Breitbart on 2012 GOP Presidential Candidates (from Tolbert Report)

Concerning the above clip Jason Tolbert wrote:

Brietbart also offered his thought on the current Republican Presidential candidate pointing at that it is still very early and we still need to get to know the candidate better and hopes more candidates get in the race. He pointed specifically to Rep. Thaddeus McCotter of Michigan, Herman Cain who has announced and is now “being taken seriously by the grassroots,”  and Rep. Allen West of Florida.

“I don’t want the Republican establishment to think that it has the ability after all its year of ineptitude, that it thinks it is going to come in and give us another John McCain or give us another Bob Dole or give us the inferior product.”

He said the he appears in Sarah Palin’s upcoming movie defending her because she is being attacked by what he called “the Democrat media complex” because of her ability to connect with conservatives. He also blames Republicans for “kicking her when she down” following the criticism against her after the Tucson shootings.

“When the Republican establishment does not stand up for those that stick their necks out for conservative principles, then the conservative establishment has become worthless,” said Breitbart

Will Huckabee step down from Fox and run for Presidential nomimation? Brummett and Brawner say no, Brantley and Tolbert say it sounds like he will (Part 2)

John Brummett in his article “Huckabee might run to stay on tv,” May 10, 2011, Arkansas News Bureau, noted:

As a Fox News television talent alone, Mike Huckabee is not as compelling as Sean Hannity or as commanding as Bill O’Reilly or even as good-looking as Greta van Susteren…

I remain on record predicting that Huckabee, in the end, will opt not to run for president.

That’s because his ultimate calculation will be that his over-arching career goal, that of ongoing media/show biz personality, can best be pursued by sticking with that career as it exists, even without renewal of the political brand, rather than by risking having to take off four whole years, which would be all the American people could possibly survive, to function as best he might as president of the United States.

He does not want to be president. He did not even want to be governor. He wants to gab; he wants to get paid by the word; he wants his own microphone and camera; he wants an adapted Falwell-Robertson kind of appeal; he wants to put out pamphlets and call them books; he wants stuff.

Might I be wrong in my prediction? Might he run?

His challenge will be finding someone in this Republican field to whom he can be certain of running second.

The best bet seems to be Romney, who, as it happens, is the one rival Huckabee cannot stand. That serves only to compound the ironic predicament.

In his article “Huckabee isn’t running,” April 24, 2011, Arkansas News Bureau, Steve Brawner observed:

Huckabee’s record as governor won’t play as well in 2012, when he would start the race as a contender, as it did in 2008, when he never really threatened to win it. In Arkansas, he raised taxes, created a big government-run health care program called ARKids First, and helped release a lot of convicts from prison, including two really bad guys, Wayne Dumond and Maurice Clemmons, who went on to kill people.

That’s not exactly a record that will win the support of the TEA Party – or of big business types who will back candidates like Romney…

Huckabee isn’t lying when he says that he won’t decide until this summer. There is still a part of him that hasn’t shut the door. But he’s leaning strongly enough against the idea that he is comfortable with building this big house.

Jason Tolbert reported:

KATV’s Scott Inman sat down for an extended segment with Gov. Huckabee today on which aired tonight in central Arkansas.  In it, he sounds like he is inching closer to a decision to run.

Max Brantley in March noted:

I think Mike Huckabee is going to run for president, but I think he’s going to finesse the decision as long as possible to hang onto the money he makes as a non-candidate with his radio show (now on 560 stations) and his show on Fox News, which recently booted two commentators who’ve made not much more presidential noise than Huckabee.

Where do I stand on this? I think Huckabee will probably not run. I earlier thought that he would run and I knew that he could always come back to Fox later and get his job back.However, I heard John Fund of the Wall Street Journal speak the other day and he commented that when people like the liberal President Obama are in control, it makes his job so much more easy. The subjects for the articles are handed to him on a platter by Obama everyday. I think the same is true for Huckabee and his show. I think that Brummett and Brawner are right. In other words, Huckabee is having too good of a time making fun of Obama and he knows he is serving the conservative cause by getting the truth out there on the air every week. Ronald Reagan said that liberalism has always failed whenever it is tried, and Huckabee has an abundance of Obama’s mistakes to make fun of everyday on his show. The comedy material is just too much to say no to!!!!

Mike Huckabee to Osama bin Laden: “Welcome to Hell” (Part 5)

Mike Huckabee

Picture of former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee

Adrian Rogers – Crossing God’s Deadline. Part 1

John Brummett in his article “Huckabee speaks for bad guy below,” Arkansas News Bureau, May 5, 2011 had to say:

Are we supposed to understand and accept that Mike Huckabee is in hell where he has official duties as a greeter,welcoming Osama bin-Laden?

Let us resist the evil urge to say it all makes sense — that the Big Huckster would be in that location and that Lucifer would have tabbed him for special responsibilities on account of his gift of gab.

But no one — absolutely no one — could possibly compete in the grandstanding sweepstakes with the tacky Floridian, meaning the second-favorite son of Hope, Mike Huckabee.

“Welcome to hell,” Huckabee presumed to say to this dead body, revealing himself, again, as more a tabloid headline than a responsible communicator.

Huckabee opened his altogether superfluous public statement by saying it was most unusual to celebrate death. So then he proceeded to celebrate death, apparently licensed by his own pre-emptive acknowledgment of the questionable taste that he was about to display.

That’s a little like the first three paragraphs of this column — saying something tacky by the trick of asserting that it would be inappropriate to say the thing being said. Those paragraphs were written only for ironic effect, you see, to make the point of applying Huckabee’s device to himself.

We all suspect strongly, of course, that bin-Laden will spend eternity in hell, whatever his form and whatever hell’s. But we should not embrace a politician’s seeking electoral gain by dictating and announcing after-life dispositions. Those we should defer to a higher power, whose divine authority no mortal man should dare usurp, even for TV ratings or votes, or both.


I really am uncomfortable with all this kind of lighthearted talk about hell.  Jason Tolbert mentions this same concern in his article yesterday, “American pride; Christian mercy,” Arkansas News Bureau:

However, in spite of the jubilation, some of the reaction was troubling.

“Welcome to hell, bin Laden,” Mike Huckabee wrote on his website last Sunday evening.

Wait a second. A minister of the gospel of Christ is welcoming someone to hell? Something about that just does not feel right.

The gospel I believe teaches that Christ died for all, the good and bad. It teaches that Christ’s redemption is strong enough to save the very worst person on the face of the earth. I think bin Laden meets that definition.

God’s redemption is much stronger than the human mind can comprehend. I can’t forgive bin Laden; only God can do that. I take satisfaction and flag-waving American pride that he was met with justice. But I take no pleasure in the fact that he rejected the love of God and never turned from a life of fanatical hate, leading to his ultimate eternal fate.

I was reminded last week of another fanatical, hate-filled terrorist. This religious leader of his day hated Christians so much that he made it his goal to see them stopped and executed, which he watched and supervised with glee.

He became the apostle Paul after Christ changed his life. He went on to write half the New Testament and was perhaps the greatest missionary of all time.

My point is this. Let us rejoice in justice but let those of us who profess to be Christians remember that we are driven not by hate but by love. And let us tell the world that God’s love is big enough to save even those we hate the most.

The traditional Christian view of hell is a very serious doctrine. 

The next few days I will be posting portions of the article “Hell:The Horrible Choice,” by Patrick Zukeran of Probe Ministries. Here is the fourth installment:

How Can a Loving God Send People to Hell?

Recently I was in a enjoying a pleasant discussion with an atheist named Gus. After answering most of his objections against Christianity, he paused for a moment of contemplation. He then leaned over the table and said, “I find it hard to believe in a God of love who says, ‘Love me or I will throw you into the fire!'”

This statement represents a common misunderstanding. God does not send anyone to hell; people choose to go there.

I explained that God is a loving God, and His earnest desire is that all turn from sin and receive His gift of eternal life. 2 Peter 3:9 states, “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” God desires all to be saved and has made the way possible by sending His son to die in our place. He invites everyone to accept His free gift of eternal life through Christ.

Since God’s desire is that all be saved and He has made this possible for all men, God cannot bear the blame for people going to hell. People go to hell because they knowingly choose to reject His love. C. S. Lewis said, “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, ‘Thy will be done,’ and those to whom God says, in the end, ‘Thy will be done.’ “{4}

God’s love also keeps Him from imposing His will on individuals. If a person does not want to be with God in this lifetime, He will not force that person to be with Him for all eternity. In other words, the door of hell is locked from the inside.

After a brief moment, Gus asked, “Do people really have a choice since the Bible states that we are all born sinners and cannot help but sin?” I acknowledged that we are born in sin (Psalm 51) and have a bent to sin. However, our sin nature does not force us to sin. We are sinners and it is inevitable that we will disobey God. However, we can avoid sinning and often do so because disobedience to God involves a choice we make. We can choose otherwise. In a similar way although we are on the road to destruction, we can decide to get off that road and choose life.

What about predestination, some may ask? Does that not negate one’s ability to choose? There are various views on this doctrine but it does not negate our responsibility to repent. God holds us accountable for our decisions, and this responsibility implies the ability to respond. Although we as finite beings may not fully comprehend this doctrine, that does not excuse us from the choice we must all make about Christ.

The sad news is that all who go to hell could avoid going there, but they make a horrible choice.

Notes

1. Peter Kreeft and Ronald Tacelli, Handbook of Christian Apologetics (Downers Grove, IL.: InterVarsity Press, 1994), 282.
2. Bertrand Russell, Why I Am Not a Christian (New York: Touchstone Books, 1957), 17 – 18.
3. Charles Darwin, The Autobiography of Charles Darwin, ed. Nora Darwin Barlow, with original omissions restored (N.Y.: W. W. Norton, 1993), 87.
4. C. S. Lewis, Screwtape Letters (New York: Macmillan), 69.

Obama’s re-election chances helped by Osama being brought to justice? Timing is everything!!!

George H.W.Bush’s Gulf War was very successful, nevertheless, it could not lead him to a re-election.

 

Bill Clinton’s success in 1992 election attempt was brought on in part to the public’s forgetfulness.

The chances of President Obama’s re-election have to improved since the events of yesterday. Last night people were singing in the streets. In fact, I just watched a video clip on the Tolbert Report website showing people shouting “USA,USA” outside the Whitehouse. However, it is my view that 18 months is too long for people to remember.   First lets take a look at the typical reaction of the press today which is almost crown him already the winner in 2012. This is especially true of bloggers today. Mike Dorning does a good job of giving a good overview of the latest events.

Mike Dorning in his article “Death of Bin Laden May Strengthen Obama’s Hand in Policy Debates,” Bloomberg, May 2, 2011 noted:

The long-awaited retribution against al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden for the Sept. 11 attacks likely will strengthen President Barack Obama’s hand in pursuing both his foreign policy and domestic goals.

Six days after the terrorist attacks in 2001, President George W. Bush declared bin Laden was “Wanted: Dead or Alive,” Nearly 10 years later, after the bearded terrorist eluded capture when the U.S. invaded Afghanistan and continued to taunt the nation with videotaped statements, Obama last night announced: “Justice has been done.”

Rivals and allies alike offered congratulations to the administration for the U.S. raid that killed bin Laden yesterday in Pakistan.

Bush, Obama’s Republican predecessor, called the mission “a momentous success” and “a victory for America.”

Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, one of the Republicans who may run against him next year, included Obama among those deserving credit, offering “congratulations to our intelligence community, our military and the president.”

Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, another Republican weighing a presidential bid, also congratulated Obama and the military for ’’a job well done.’’

The timing of bin Laden’s death strengthens Obama’s standing as he begins negotiations with congressional Republicans on a long-term deficit reduction package and on legislation to raise the national debt ceiling. He is scheduled to have a dinner with bipartisan congressional leaders at the White House tonight and Vice President Joe Biden opens budget negotiations on May 5.

Counterweight to Criticism

For Obama — who last week released his birth certificate to quiet critics who questioned his eligibility to be president and who, as a candidate, fended off false rumors that he was a Muslim — his role in ordering the operation and announcing its successful completion now provides a counterweight to criticism of his foreign policy, particularly his use of U.S. power.

Rick Nelson, director of the homeland security and counterterrorism program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, said the death of bin Laden won’t immediately change the tactical battle against terrorism because, at the time of his death, the al-Qaeda leader wasn’t delivering operational orders to the group’s affiliates.

“Its ultimate significance will be on a strategic-symbolic level,” Nelson said. “It’s incumbent on the Obama administration to seize on this moment, especially amid the popular uprisings across the Middle East and North Africa.”

Something to Celebrate

The killing of the man who had come to embody the global terrorist threat now provides a victory to celebrate for a public soured by a slow economic recovery, high gasoline prices and dissatisfaction with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In a CBS/New York Times poll completed April 20, 70 percent of Americans said the country is on the wrong track, the worst reading in more than two years. Perceptions about the country’s direction historically have been among the factors predicting an incumbent president’s re-election prospects.

As news of bin Laden’s death spread, crowds gathered outside the White House and at the “Ground Zero” site of the attack on the World Trade Center in Manhattan to cheer, shout “USA” and wave American flags. Shortly before Obama addressed the nation, the crowd outside the White House began singing “The Star Spangled Banner,” the national anthem.

Matthew Murray, 24, of Arlington, Virginia, stood in front of the White House waving an American flag. Dressed in shorts, sneakers and a t-shirt, Murray said he ran five miles from his home to join the crowd.

‘Spontaneous Outpouring’

“It’s a struggle we’ve spent years working on, and it’s finally over,” Murray said. “I’ve never seen a spontaneous outpouring of joy like this.”

The mood extended to markets. U.S. stock-index futures and Asian shares jumped and crude oil dropped as Obama made the announcement.

Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures expiring in June climbed 0.6 percent to 1,367.6 at 6:11 a.m. in New York. The benchmark measure of U.S. shares closed last week at the highest level since June 2008. Oil for June delivery was down $2.25 at $111.38 a barrel after declining as much as $3.11 to $110.82 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Obama used his television address to shift the ground to themes of national unity and optimism that were pillars of his 2008 election campaign. He asked the country to “think back to the sense of unity that prevailed on 9/11.”

He also said that, while the task of securing the nation against terrorism isn’t finished, “we are once again reminded that America can do whatever we set our mind to.”

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In his article “The war that made Bill Clinton President:Remember when every major Democrat in America was scared to run against George H.W.Bush? “ Jan 23, 2011, Salon, Steve Kornacki writes:

The war that made Bill Clinton president

AP
George H.W. Bush prepares to give his Jan. 16, 1991, Oval Office speech announcing the beginning of military action in Iraq (left); and Bill Clinton on the campaign trail in 1992.

The Gulf War that began 20 years ago this past week ended with America’s political class in nearly universal agreement on one point: The Democrats were screwed in 1992.

In the months before the war, as he’d dispatched hundreds of thousands of troops to the Persian Gulf in response to Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait, there had been widespread fear among Americans that President George H.W. Bush was leading them into another Vietnam. But as wars go, Operation Desert Storm proved surprisingly tidy: The verdict was quick and decisive and American casualties were low. It was everything Vietnam hadn’t been, and when Bush declared a cease-fire on Feb. 28, a months-long national celebration ensued, complete with parades, prime-time television specials — and, of course, soaring popularity for the commander in chief, whose leadership was hailed by even his harshest critics.

It was in this climate that Bush, his approval ratings edging over 90 percent in some polls, was branded a shoo-in for reelection in ’92. Sure, he’d gone back on his “no new taxes” pledge the year before, and yes, the economy was clearly in recession, but none of this mattered anymore: Even Harry Truman after the Japanese surrender hadn’t enjoyed Bush’s standing with his fellow countrymen, and it was simply inconceivable that they might turn around and give him the boot 20 months later — especially when almost every Democrat being mentioned as a potential candidate had been against the war. One poll matched Bush against the man widely considered the Democrats’ best bet for ’92, New York Gov. Mario Cuomo, in a trial heat: Bush came out on top … by 62 points.

“Large problems and small bedevil the Democrats,” the Washington Post’s Mary McGrory wrote in mid-March. “They are fairly resigned to the idea that the 1992 presidential election was decided during Operation Desert Storm, and they realize they may not get the sand out of their shoes until Thanksgiving, if then.”

There was one Democrat, though, who was interested in running for president for whom all of this was good news — very good news. Forty-five-year-old Bill Clinton had just been reelected the previous fall to his fifth term as Arkansas’ governor. But his barely concealed national ambitions — he’d walked to the starting line for the 1988 presidential race before backing out and citing family concerns — had been a liability in that campaign, and Clinton had responded by promising Arkansans not to seek the White House if they returned him to the statehouse. By the final days of the race, when it was clear he’d survive, Clinton was already looking for a way to wiggle out of that commitment, but it would be a process. He needed time.

The Gulf War gave him plenty of it. In the previous presidential campaign cycle, Michael Dukakis, Gary Hart, Jesse Jackson, Richard Gephardt, Joe Biden and Bruce Babbitt had all been essentially running full-fledged presidential campaigns by the spring of 1987. But in the spring of 1991, about the only thing to be heard on the Democratic side was crickets. The party’s brightest stars all made it clear that they either weren’t running in ’92, or were in no hurry to decide. They were all intimidated by Bush’s imposing poll numbers, and many of them also wondered if their opposition to what had turned into an immensely popular war would render them unelectable…

Thus, there was room for Clinton to ease his way into the national conversation — to slowly acclimate Arkansans to the idea that he’d go back on his pledge, the better to avoid an embarrassing home state backlash when he finally did jump in. The calculations that were keeping so many big-name Democrats away from the presidential race didn’t really apply to Clinton.

This enabled Clinton get the Democratic Nomination but one of the main reasons he beat President Bush was the Gulf War victory was too far in the past for people to remember.

 

Seth Myers makes fun of Republican Presidential Candidates

Seth Myers hits republicans and democrats in his jokes.

Yahoo News reported this morning in the article “Obama ridicules, Trump at Correspondents’ dinner, mocks ‘birther’ crusade” by Rachel Rose Hartman:

But that didn’t mean journalists were spared any ridicule Saturday night.

The evening’s celebrity host Seth Meyers, “Saturday Night Live” writer and star, mocked some of the industry’s best-known faces.

“Katie [Couric] was known best for asking those tough questions like, ‘name a newspaper,” Meyers said, referencing Couric’s 2008 interview with Sarah Palin. “Years of hard-hitting questions, and she’s going to be remembered for the one that could have doubled as a category on ‘The Family Feud.’ “

On Juan Williams, the NPR journalist fired after saying he gets nervous on a plane when he sees people dressed in “Muslim garb,” Meyers said, “so Juan is black and afraid of Muslims, making him the least likely man to get a cab in New York City.”

But some of Meyers most biting remarks were reserved for 2012 hopefuls and the president himself.

Meyers suggested Romney’s book “No Apologies” actually indicated Romney made many mistakes. “If I come home from a trip to Vegas and the first thing I say to my girlfriend is ‘no apologies,’ we’re gonna have a follow up conversation,” Meyers quipped.

Meyers made fun of Trump’s hair, likening it to a fox that would be happy to finish the leftovers at his table, said Pawlenty makes Al Gore look like drag queen RuPaul, and joked that Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) and son Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) have something in common with Meyers and his own father: “we’re also not going to get elected president.”

Meyers also took a few digs at Obama.

“Who knows if they can beat you in 2012?” Meyers said of the potential GOP field. “But I’ll tell you who can definitely beat you, Mr. President–2008 Barack Obama,” he said, standing feet from the commander-in-chief as the audience roared with laughter. “You would have loved him–so charismatic, so charming. Was he a little too idealistic? Maybe. But you would have loved him.”

And Meyers also took note of the toll the presidency has apparently taken on the president’s appearance. Meyers said the First Lady looked even more beautiful at Saturday’s dinner than she did on Inauguration Day 2009. “But you, Mr. President have aged a little,” Meyers said. “What happened to you? When you were sworn in you looked like the guy from the Old Spice commercials. Now you look like Louis Gossett Sr.,” he said, referencing 74-year-old actor Louis Gossett Jr.

“Maybe you should start smoking again,” Meyers said. “If your hair gets any whiter, the tea party is going to endorse it.”

 

Jason Tolbert reported that Mike Huckabee is coming to Arkansas for a big fundraiser. If it goes well there be a great chance that Huckabee may throw his hat into the ring.  Just think about the fact that Huckabee just might be in the same seat President Obama was in this year where he hosted the dinner. I wonder if he could take getting hit by all those jokes or not.

Obama:Makes fun of potential Republican candidates

Donald Trump took the jokes leveled at him in stride. I personally think Donald Trump himself is a joke. I think most conservative republicans think the same. Take a look at what Tolbert wrote on the subject.

Jason Tolbert wrote yesterday:

Over the last decade, we have become a society obsessed with reality shows. That culture seems to be bleeding over to presidential politics.

How so?

Well, three of the top contenders — at least to some degree — are already reality show stars. Donald Trump of NBC’s “The Apprentice,” Mike Huckabee of Fox News’ “Huckabee,” and Sarah Palin of “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” all are mentioned in the same breath as Republican Primary 2012.

In fairness, unlike the winners of Big Brother or Survivor, these three were well-known pre-primetime TV.

Donald Trump’s fame was mostly based on being filthy rich. A real estate developer and owner of hotels and casinos across the country, Trump’s net wealth is somewhere in the millions, although no one really knows for sure. He has practiced a tradition of putting his name “Trump” on virtually everything he owns, increasing the public perception of him as a mega-rich guy.

Yahoo News reported this morning in the article “Obama ridicules, Trump at Correspondents’ dinner, mocks ‘birther’ crusade” by Rachel Rose Hartman:

 

After weeks of keeping his thoughts about Donald Trump largely to himself, President Obama on Saturday night ridiculed the real estate magnate in front of a live televised audience at the annual White House Correspondents’ Association dinner in Washington, D.C.

As Trump and wife Melania sat among the guests gathered at the Washington Hilton, Obama poked fun at Trump’s reality show, said Trump lacked the “credentials” to be president, and mocked the businessman’s recent crusade to get Obama to release his long-form birth certificate.

“I know that he’s taken some flack lately,” Obama said of Trump. “But no one is happier, no one is prouder to put this birth certificate matter to rest than The Donald.”

But then the president quickly changed gears. “And that’s because he can finally get back to focusing on the issues that matter, like–did we fake the moon landing? What really happened in Roswell? And where are  Biggie and Tupac?” Obama said, referencing rap icons Biggie Smalls and Tupac Shakur.

You can watch Obama’s 19-minute speech in its entirety below:

But Obama didn’t stop at making light of the mutual infatuation of Trump and the birther movement.

The president next mocked Trump’s background, saying, “All kidding aside. Obviously we all know about your credentials and breadth of experience,” a dig at Trump’s political background that evoked laughter from the audience of journalists, politicians and celebrities.

Obama then chose to reference a recent episode of “Celebrity Apprentice” that featured Trump, the star of the program, firing actor Gary Busey instead of singer Meatloaf and rapper Lil Jon in an Omaha Steak challenge. “And these are the kind of decisions that would keep me up at night,” Obama said as the audience roared with laughter and applause. “Well handled, sir. Well handled.”

It’s typical for the speeches at the annual dinner to play out as a roast, poking fun at the self-importance of the national political scene. But Obama’s lampooning of Trump and the birther crusade held special significance, since the Correspondents Dinner festivities marked the first time the president and Trump were in the same room since Trump began his highly publicized campaign to get Obama to release his birth certificate.

The president made fun of the controversy, saying that he was prepared to “go a step further.”

“Tonight, for the first time, I am releasing my official birth video,” he told the audience. But then he played a clip of lion Simba’s birth in Disney’s cartoon movie The Lion King.

“I want to make clear to the Fox News table–that was a joke,” the president said of the Disney clip.

Obama also made some jokes at his own expense, noting how his “honeymoon” as president was over and referencing the perception that he’s too professorial and arrogant. At the star-studded gala, he also paused to note that he’s even losing support from Hollywood—a mainstay of fundraising for the president’s 2008 campaign. (Though he dinged actor Matt Damon for the celebrity’s recent criticism, saying “Matt, I just saw ‘The Adjustment Bureau,’ so right back at you, buddy.”)

Obama also joked about starting conspiracy theories about his potential 2012 opponents: Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) was born in Canada; Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty has the middle name “Hosni”; Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman is Chinese; and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney passed universal health care. (The last allegation, of course, falls into the “funny because it’s true” category, since Romney had presided over the passage of a state-level version of the same individual-mandate plan that Obama signed into law in 2010.)

The light-hearted evening was interspersed with more serious matters. The Correspondents Association issued awards students and journalists for their achievements, while also honoring journalists abroad who have lost their lives or faced grave physical hazards in the course of their work.

Will Huckabee step down from Fox and run for Presidential nomimation? Brawner says no, Brantley and Tolbert say it sounds like he will (Royal Wedding Part 20)

Huckabee and Barton discuss the framers of the Constitution and what has been lost through revisionism.

In his article “Huckabee isn’t running,” April 24, 2011, Arkansas News Bureau, Steve Brawner observed:

Would you build the house of your dreams if you didn’t plan to live in it?
I wouldn’t, either. But that’s exactly what would be happening if Mike Huckabee had any serious plans of running for president.

Huckabee, for whom I worked as a communications aide in 1997-99, is constructing a $2.2 million, 11,000-square-foot oceanfront mansion in Florida, according to a front page story in last Sunday’s statewide daily. That would seem to be a huge waste of money if he also were planning on spending the last half of this year and all of next slogging through Iowa, New Hampshire, and the rest of the country, and then the next eight years living in the White House…

Huckabee, by contrast, has too many reasons not to want it. Since leaving the Governor’s Mansion and running unsuccessfully for president in 2008, he has parlayed his likable media personality into lucrative book, TV and radio deals. He’s getting rich playing to his strengths.

Meanwhile, running for president means having to overcome his weaknesses, chief among them his inability to raise money. That will be a huge problem in an election cycle when even the losing major party candidate will raise and spend a billion dollars.

Moreover, Huckabee’s record as governor won’t play as well in 2012, when he would start the race as a contender, as it did in 2008, when he never really threatened to win it. In Arkansas, he raised taxes, created a big government-run health care program called ARKids First, and helped release a lot of convicts from prison, including two really bad guys, Wayne Dumond and Maurice Clemmons, who went on to kill people.

That’s not exactly a record that will win the support of the TEA Party – or of big business types who will back candidates like Romney…

Huckabee isn’t lying when he says that he won’t decide until this summer. There is still a part of him that hasn’t shut the door. But he’s leaning strongly enough against the idea that he is comfortable with building this big house.

Jason Tolbert reported yesterday:

KATV’s Scott Inman sat down for an extended segment with Gov. Huckabee today on which aired tonight in central Arkansas.  In it, he sounds like he is inching closer to a decision to run.

Max Brantley in March noted:

I think Mike Huckabee is going to run for president, but I think he’s going to finesse the decision as long as possible to hang onto the money he makes as a non-candidate with his radio show (now on 560 stations) and his show on Fox News, which recently booted two commentators who’ve made not much more presidential noise than Huckabee.

Where do I stand on this? I think Huckabee will probably not run. I earlier thought that he would run and I knew that he could always come back to Fox later and get his job back.However, I heard John Fund of the Wall Street Journal speak the other day and he commented that when people like the liberal President Obama are in control, it makes his job so much more easy. The subjects for the articles are handed to him on a platter by Obama everyday. I think the same is true for Huckabee and his show. In other words, Huckabee is having too good of a time making fun of Obama and he knows he is serving the conservative cause by getting the truth out there on the air every week. Ronald Reagan said that liberalism has always failed whenever it is tried, and Huckabee has an abundance of Obama’s mistakes to make fun of everyday on his show. The comedy material is just too much to say no to!!!!

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Taking a Rest

Britain’s Prince William and Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey, London, during their wedding service. (AP Photo/Anthony Devlin, Pool)

British Prince William unexpectedly took a moment to speak to excited royal fans outside Clarence House in London on Thursday night, on the eve of his wedding to Kate Middleton. (April 28)