Friday, August 09, 2013

Fri Aug 9th Todays News

Happy birthday and many happy returns Sol LySlim GirlFat and Anna Urban-a. Born on the same day, across the years, as Izaak Walton (1593), Amedeo Avogadro (1776), Joseph Locke (1805), Robert Shaw (1927), Rod Laver (1938), Melanie Griffith (1957), John Key (1961), Whitney Houston (1963), Eric Bana (1968), Audrey Tautou (1978) and Caylee Anthony (2005). On your day, International Day of the World's Indigenous People
1483 – The first mass in the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican City was celebrated.
1902 – Edward VII and Alexandra of Denmark were crowned King and Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
1971 – The Troubles: British authorities began arresting and interning (without trial) people accused of being republican paramilitary members.
1988 – Wayne Gretzky was traded from the Edmonton Oilers to the Los Angeles Kings in one of the most controversial player transactions in ice hockey history.
2001 – Fifteen people were killed and 130 others were wounded when a suicide bomber detonated his bomb at a Sbarro pizza restaurant in Jerusalem.
The first mass in the Sistine Chapel wasn't an accident. It was made with great love. As were you.
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KEVIN 457

Tim Blair – Friday, August 09, 2013 (12:36pm)

Hide the pies! Salad-dodging UK chair tester Tom Watson is headed our way
British anti-Murdoch campaigner Tom Watson says he is coming to Australia to take on the nation’s tabloid editors over their coverage of Kevin Rudd.
The Labour MP, who shot to prominence during the Leveson phone hacking inquiry, announced the move on Twitter last night.
“That @dailytelegraph front page did it,” he said, referring to yesterday’s Daily Telegraph splash featuring Mr Rudd as Colonel Klink, from Hogan’s Heroes …
Mr Watson will join a team of overseas campaigners, including three former Obama operatives, working to re-elect the Prime Minister. 
Kevin 457 is stacking the joint with foreign types. This particular example should provide huge assistance to the local restaurant industry: 
Minister Tom Watson spent so much on a shopping spree at Marks & Spencer funded by the taxpayer that the store gave him a free pizza wheel.
A leaked receipt submitted to the parliamentary fees office shows that he was given the free gift during his £150 shopping trip.
Other leaked documents reveal that Mr Watson, a close ally of Gordon Brown, spent the maximum of £4,800 in a single year on food. 
He’ll fit right in with Rudd’s happy team
After The Times did a Reservoir Dogs-style mock-up of Watson and other Labourites who were said to be part of Gordon Brown’s sinister cabal of enforcers and smearers, ‘Watson walked along the beach, in tears’ …

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SUBVERSION BANNED

Tim Blair – Friday, August 09, 2013 (12:32pm)

Another peace assignment beckons, this time in Queensland
A Nundah coffee shop has cut News Corporation newspapers - posting a sign which reads:
“Rupert Murdoch - (a foreign national who gave up his Australian citizenship years ago - and thus his right to a say in Australian politics) - makes no apologies for the fact that he is using his newspapers to subvert the political and electoral outcomes in Australia for his own economic benefit.
“For this reason, his newspapers The Courier-Mail and The Australian WILL NOT BE AVAILABLE in ourcafe until further notice.” 
I wonder what these people think about Kevin Rudd’s team of foreign nationals and their attempts to subvert Australia’s political and electoral outcomes.

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WALLABADAH TELE-BAN OVERTURNED

Tim Blair – Friday, August 09, 2013 (10:53am)

Meet the small-town store owners who achieved Stephen Conroy’s impossible dream. These devoted Labor supporters this week accomplished what the former communications minister wished he could have done.
Glen and Kim Sheluchin were so outraged by Monday’s front page editorial calling for voters to throw out Kevin Rudd’s government this September 7 that they threw the Telegraph out instead.
Customers at the couple’s general store in tiny Wallabadah, a village of just a few hundred people in northern NSW, faced an empty shelf where the Telegraph would usually be found.
“I just thought it was very biased,” said Kim. “So I took them off the shelves and hid them out the back.”
Alerted to the fact that rival publisher Fairfax also ran an anti-Labor editorial on the front page of Monday’s Financial Review, Kim stuck to her guns. “We don’t actually stock that paper,” she explained. “But if we did, that would be off the shelves as well.”
A personal visit yesterday from The Daily Telegraph appears to have solved Wallabadah’s free speech crisis, however. Following high-level peace negotiations in the store’s restaurant section, copies of NSW’s most popular newspaper are once again available for purchase.

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Equipped with a ute, a bundle of fresh newspapers and a kelpie, the Telegraph‘s rural charm offensive proved irresistible.

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CHANGING HER WAYS

Tim Blair – Friday, August 09, 2013 (9:49am)

“I believe climate change is real,” Julia Gillard announced after taking office. “I believe that it is caused by human activity. I believe that we have got to therefore change the way we do things.” And then she imposed a carbon tax that would help us all save the planet. But now
The former prime minister and her partner Tim Mathieson are believed to have paid about $1.8 million for the four-bedroom, renovated house, not far from the beach. 
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The house, on a 1284-square metre block, has a large pool, 12-person spa and a second, outdoor kitchen. The advertised price was between $1.85 million and $2.05 million. 
No carbon footprint is listed. Nor is the approximate date when sea level increases will swamp that 12-person spa.

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FLIRTY DEPUTY

Tim Blair – Friday, August 09, 2013 (9:39am)

Julie Bishop deals with the comedian-Australian community:



(Via the wine-aware PWAF)

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On The Bolt Report on Sunday

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (3:54pm)

On The Bolt Report on Sunday:
A campaign of lies and desperation.
Coalition foreign affairs spokesman Julie Bishop, fresh from her most extraordinary interview.
The panel - Michael Kroger and John McTernan, Julia Gillard’s former spin doctor. Who won week one?
And Rudd’s Latham moment?
The Bolt Report is on Channel 10 at 10am and 4.00pm on Sunday.

The twitter feed.
The place the videos appear

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Growth forecast cut again

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (12:18pm)

More signs of economic strife:

THE Reserve Bank of Australia has ...  revised GDP growth down to 2.25 per cent in the year to December, from 2.5 per cent in its May statement.
But what does Kevin Rudd talk about today?  He spreads the lie that the Coalition could put the GST on food and send the price of Vegemite soaring. He claims Murdoch editors are out to get him.  

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Two more boats

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (12:16pm)

For all the spin, the boats keep coming. The ABC reports:

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UPDATE
A total of 115 boat people on board.

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Yes, David, there is a tomorrow

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (10:24am)

Global warming - propaganda
David McKnight, former editor of the communist Tribune and now - of course - a journalism academic and global warming alarmist:

We are exporting coal like there is no tomorrow.
False. We’re exporting coal as if there is indeed a tomorrow. It’s the warmists who, against the evidence, claim there isn’t. 

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Kim Williams steps down

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (10:03am)

Kim Williams, who fought hard against the Gillard Government’s attempts to muzzle the media, has stepped down as head of News Corp in Australia. Replacing him is Julian Clarke, the former Herald & Weekly Times managing director and chairman, who manages to be both a gentleman and tough. And a conservative of the old school.
UPDATE
Robert Thomson, chief executive of News Corp, also pays tribute to Williams’ greatest service to not just newspapers but free speech generally:

He has been a powerful, eloquent and effective advocate for media freedom and freedom of speech in Australia. His leadership against hastily conceived ‘reforms’ ensured that the vigorous and vital debate that has characterised our country will endure. We all owe him a debt of gratitude for that strong and principled stand. 

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Beattie said Rudd was terrible. So why help him stay Prime Minister? UPDATE: Soorley says no

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (9:22am)

Peter Beattie once said Kevin Rudd was bad for Labor and bad for the country:

The Weekend Australian, June 26, 2010: 
PETER Beattie: But like the overwhelming majority of caucus, I knew there was a fatal political flaw. It was poor political judgment on key issues. For me, Rudd’s lack of political judgment was demonstrated in the introduction of the mining tax without proper consultation, the backflip on timing of the emissions trading scheme and the bungled home insulation program. His failure to listen to a broad range of advice, particularly on issues in which he had little expertise, also demonstrated poor judgment…
The Weekend Australian, July 31, 2010:


BEATTIE: At the moment, the party faithful know they are being betrayed ... There can also be no greater act of treachery ... . Media reports are now suggesting Rudd himself is possibly the source of the leak…
Paul Howes, Confessions of a Faceless Man, page 20:


(PETER Beattie) told me plainly that “that bloke stuffed up the Goss government, stuffed up his own government and during the election did his best to stuff up Julia’s government. No one should ever forget the damage that he has done.
But Beattie now wants to help this same man be Prime Minister of the country for another three years. Power above principle:
WE have had our differences but it takes a bit of strength and a bit of guts from the Prime Minister to rise above that and say ‘what’s good for the campaign, what’s good for Queensland’.
UPDATE
I agree Peter Beattie improves Labor’s chances in Forde, but I suspect Fairfax’s Mark Kenny assumes too much:
Beattie will now secure the seat of Forde for Labor, held by the LNP’s Bert van Manen, on a margin of 1.6 per cent…
But perhaps most telling is that it reveals Beattie’s own assessment of Rudd’s chances. A nine-year premier, with an unrivalled sense of the electoral mood, Beattie is not in this to wind up on the left side of the Speaker in Canberra.
After week one, I’d put Labor’s chances of winning the election much lower than I did at the start, and Beattie is no shoo-in.
There is now a real chance that Labor’s campaign could go off the rails. Much depends on Sunday’s debate, but I doubt it will prove decisive - unless Rudd crashes.

UPDATE
Now another Murdoch paper cuts loose, calling this latest stunt for what it is:

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What Rudd is most vulnerable to is ridicule. And this latest move of his is plainly ridiculous.

Spin unspun.
I just hope some papers do not now overplay their hand.
(Thanks to reader Baldrick.)
UPDATE
Simon Benson:

The only interest Beattie could have in running for an LNP seat would be to replace Rudd as leader when the time comes post-election.
And in this endeavour he will have support. The Australian Workers Union in Queensland, namely its un-retiring spiritual leader Bill Ludwig, is still mightily pissed off with their boy Bill Shorten for putting the knife to Julia Gillard. Ludwig wanted to strip Shorten of his lifetime membership of the AWU.
This of course would be good for Shorten. Beattie in the federal Labor caucus, however, wouldn’t be. He is now the Queensland AWU’s new leadership candidate.
UPDATE
Kevin Rudd admits Labor was behind in the Coalition’s second most marginal seat in Queensland - one of half a dozen Queensland seat it must win to offest the expected losses in NSW and Tasmania:
Oh no, we knew we were behind in Forde before Peter Beattie came back and decided to be our candidate,” Mr Rudd said.
That is a big admission. If the Rudd factor couldn’t deliver even a 1.6 per cent swing in his home state, Rudd is finished.
UPDATE
Bruce Hawker persuades The Australian things aren’t that dire:

A MEETING on Tuesday morning in Kevin Rudd’s electorate office, in the southside Brisbane suburb of Morningside, was the first whiff many Labor officials in Queensland had that something big was up.
Called to discuss campaign financing, Bruce Hawker - the Prime Minister’s closest political adviser - dropped a bombshell when he began discussing secret polling across the battleground state. Jaws dropped that Hawker, who had helped run state campaigns for years in Queensland, had gone behind their backs to poll Coalition-held seats up and down the coast.
Hawker methodically took them through the numbers, showing Rudd could win five to seven seats in his home state. Then he leaned on ALP state secretary Anthony Chisholm, state president Dick Williams and the board of Labor Holdings, the party’s investment arm, for financing to deliver the wins.

As the political mercenary took the group, which included Rudd, through the seats - Brisbane, Longman, Bonner, Leichhardt, Herbert and Hinkler - there was one electorate that had been polled that he failed to mention; Forde. It had been a different type of poll because in Forde, south of Brisbane, the voters had been asked to make a choice between Labor candidates; the endorsed local radiologist Des Hardman and former premier Peter Beattie.
The story contradicts my information that Jim Soorley would be the next to be parachuted in - replacing the candidate for Longman:
Former Labor mayor Jim Soorley was also polled as an alternate to Labor’s current candidate in Longman, union official Michael Caisley.
Soorley, now a lobbyist, told The Australian yesterday he was never approached and would never have run, even though he is a longtime supporter of Rudd.
I have no interest in running for politics again - I said that when I left the city council and I haven’t changed my mind,” he said. “I have not been asked to run, and if I was, I would say no.”
Soorley said he had been kept in the dark about the polling. “Until today, I was unaware of any polling whatsoever and I think it is inappropriate my name would be used without any reference to me,” he said.

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How dumb must you be to not see the difference with John Nguyen?

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (8:53am)

Trolls of the Left seem unable to distinguish between people who come in under our refugee program and people who fly from the other side of the world and then take a boat to Australia as “asylum seekers”:

A Liberal candidate who fled Vietnam’s communist regime on a fishing boat to seek asylum and now wants to stop the boats has denied being a hypocrite.
Leftists - and newspapers - which can’t tell the difference between a refugee we select and a boat person we don’t should explain whether they are ignorant or deceptive.
It’s not as if John Nguyen hasn’t tried to explain the obvious and important difference:
Mr Nguyen said there was nothing hypocritical about his stance, and the Coalition’s asylum seeker policy would create integrity and fairness in the system. ‘’It’s a more equitable and fair process. Let’s see if we can take as many people as we can from camps,’’ he said…
‘’Only these proven policies will ensure that genuine refugees in camps around the world are given the same opportunity that I was.’’

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How Labor spent us into trouble

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (8:25am)

The IPA’s Julie Novak smashes Labor’s excuse for its non-stop deficits - that its revenue dried up. In fact, revenue is higher than ever, and the real problem is the explosion of spending under Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard:
As indicated in the recent economic statement, aggregate tax and non-tax receipts rose from about $295bn in 2007-08 to about $350bn in 2011-12…
Over the past six years, a raft of new and increased taxes, fees and charges have been introduced, including new taxes on carbon dioxide, coal, iron ore and alcopops; increasing taxes on tobacco, ethanol, LPG, luxury cars, superannuation, and income tax surcharges; and rising visa application fees…
[Labor raised] the gross debt-to-GDP ratio from 5 per cent to 18 per cent in one of the fastest loan acquisitions in the developed world… [A] spending spree of enormous proportions was launched into, lifting general government expenses from about $280bn in 2007-08 to about $378bn in 2011-12…
Taxpayers should know that interest payments on commonwealth government debt increased from less than $4bn in 2007-08 to about $11bn in 2011-12, exceeding the entire transport and communications budget of about $9bn…
The Australian Bureau of Statistics estimates there were 250,000 people employed by commonwealth government entitles (excluding permanent defence force personnel, diplomats and others working overseas) as at June 2012, up from 237,100 employees in June 2008.
UPDATE
I hope this is true. We need to be told:
TONY Abbott has performed a dramatic about-face on the Coalition’s election costings, saying it will now publish a budget bottom line and rely on Treasury’s budget figures.
Overruling treasury spokesman Joe Hockey, who earlier this week said the Coalition would not publish its final budget position before the election, Mr Abbott said the Coalition’s bottom line “will be there for everyone to see”.

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Unemployment figures are worse than we are told

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (7:49am)

Reader Noah checks the alarming employment trends missed in most reporting of the latest employment figures. He finds we have a much lower proportion of people in full-time work:
In November 2007, when the Howard Government was removed, there were 2.54 full-time employees for every part-time employee.
In August 2010, when the last election was held, there were 2.36 full-time employees for every part-time employee.
Now, in July 2013, there are 2.31 full-time employees for every part-time employee.
We have fewer hours of work per person:

In November 2007, the average HOURS WORKED PER PARTICIPANT was approx. 32.8 hours/week. (estimations based on alternate employment figures as exact figures were not available)
In August 2010, the average HOURS WORKED PER PARTICIPANT was 30.5 hours/week.
In July 2013, the average HOURS WORKED PER PARTICIPANT was 28.9 hours/week.
That’s an astonishing fall in just six years. Underemployment is rising fast.
Andrew Baker of the Centre for Independent Studies gives further reason to doubt the headline unemployment figures, which are already worrying enough:

During recessions and financial crises, governments have a habit of manipulating unemployment figures to make the unemployment rate appear to be lower than it really is.
The manipulation typically involves pushing long-term unemployed people with a minor impairment on to the disability pension…
However, the government has ... [also] been ... hiding the unemployed on unemployment benefits such as Newstart Allowance (NSA). It has done this by turning more than 110,000 people on unemployment benefits classified as jobseekers (people who have to look for work as a condition of receiving their welfare payments) into non-jobseekers (people who no longer have to look for work to receive welfare payments)…
The main reason for the skyrocketing number of non-jobseekers on unemployment benefits is that NSA recipients are required to enter into work experience activities (including education and training) after 12 months, and early school-leavers are required to complete Year 12 or its equivalent to receive Youth Allowance (Other) (YAO) instead of looking for work.
As a result, the number of people on unemployment benefits undertaking education and training has skyrocketed by 138 per cent across the past three years, from 62,500 in July 2009 to nearly 150,000 in June last year.
This is not necessarily a good thing: if people on welfare do not have to look for work, they will stay on welfare for longer. For example, the proportion of long-term YAO recipients has increased from 49 per cent in July 2008 to 59 per cent in June last year…
My estimates show that the government has managed to reduce the unemployment rate in Australia by between 0.2 per cent and 0.5 per cent since July 2009 because of these policies.
UPDATE
It seems prudent financial management - not Rudd-style spending of borrowed billions - is good for jobs:

KEVIN Rudd has been thrown on the defensive on economic management after a surprise fall in full-time jobs offset by strong growth in Queensland that challenges his warnings about the damage from the state Liberal National Party government’s “austerity” cuts…
In a challenge to one of Labor’s key election strategies in Queensland, the latest figures showed the state gained 18,500 jobs and saw its unemployment rate fall from 6.3 per cent to 5.9 per cent.
Labor has attacked Queensland Premier Campbell Newman and his LNP government by claiming his cuts to 14,000 public service positions last year would damage the state economy.
UBS economist Scott Haslem said Queensland was the nation’s “standout” performer, and Commonwealth Bank economists noted the state’s “buoyant” conditions.
The results undercut Labor’s warning that a federal government led by Tony Abbott would drive down growth by adopting the same “austerity” policies as Mr Newman, starting with an audit of spending to clear the way for cuts.
UPDATE
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Professor Sinclair Davidson isn’t as alarmed by the latest joblessness figures - although there are some worrying trends:

The unemployment rate is the blue line in per cent (read off the right-hand axis). Over the Howard era unemployment trended down before increasing massively during the GFC. Now we can quibble about the stimulus spending; did it or did it not ‘save’ Australia from recession? While politically important, that is something of a side-show. What is interesting now is that unemployment has increased since 2011. That cannot be blamed on the GFC. It also does not fit in with Penny Wong’s argument: 
“what is happening in the global economy” and showed the importance of carefully managing Australia’s economic transition.
What else is happening? The red line is the participation rate in per cent (read off the left-hand axis). There are three things that have happened since 1996. Up to 2004, the participation rate was fairly level and then increased, it leveled out again in 2008. Again we can quibble about whether that was due to IR policy, or the mining boom, or whatever. Either way the sustained increase in the participation rate is a success. A ‘good thing’. Small month to month variations in the participation rate should not detract from an overall positive development in the labour market.
Hockey’s comments about the decline in the participation rate being “alarming” is a bit over the top.
But there are clouds on the horizon. Look at the green line – the employment to population rate in per cent (again read off the left-hand axis). This figure generally increases until early 2008, falls during the GFC, then recovers but is now declining again. That is potentially worrying.

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Another dud scare: ice where there was meant to be none

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (7:37am)

Global warming - dud predictions
Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Alarmism has a round-up of Arctic alarmism. Exhibit A:
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In fact:
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How it looks:
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(Thanks to reader Jamie.) 

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Murdoch’s Tim Blair breaks the blockade of Wallabadah

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (7:06am)

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Tim Blair is a man of peace. While most of us Murdoch minions carry the sword and the flaming brand, Blair brings the oil that heals and the kelpie that does what kelpies do:
These devoted Labor supporters this week accomplished what the former communications minister wished he could have done. They banned The Daily Telegraph.
Glen and Kim Sheluchin were so outraged by Monday’s front page editorial calling for voters to throw out Kevin Rudd’s government this September 7 that they threw the Telegraph out instead.
Customers at the couple’s general store in tiny Wallabadah, a village of just a few hundred people in northern NSW, faced an empty shelf where The Daily Telegraph would usually be found.
“I thought it was very biased so I took them off the shelves and hid them out the back,” Kim said....
A personal visit yesterday from The Daily Telegraph appears to have solved Wallabadah’s free speech crisis.
Following high-level peace negotiations in the store’s restaurant section, copies of NSW’s most popular newspaper are once again available for purchase.
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Equipped with a ute, a bundle of fresh newspapers and a kelpie, The Daily Telegraph’s rural charm offensive proved irresistible…
Yesterday’s happy conclusion is good news for all involved, especially the area’s Telegraph readers.
According to analysis of Wallabadah General Store sales figures, The Telegraph routinely outsells The Sydney Morning Herald by 700 per cent. (The scale of this retail disparity is not in any way reduced by the fact that the store’s usual Herald sales figure is just one.)
Blair’s next task is to persuade the Central Teheran Newsagency to stock the Jerusalem Post.  

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Labor refunds mining tax to Rio, which wrote the rules

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (6:56am)

Labor designs a tax that scares off business yet raises next to nothing:
Rio Tinto has ultimately paid no mining tax to the Australian government during the first year of the controversial tax, after pre-payments made in April were refunded by the tax office…
The revelation that Rio’s pre-payments were refunded has raised the prospect that other companies such as BHP Billiton may have had their pre-payments refunded, too..,
Last week’s pre-election financial statement forecast the mining tax would raise $4 billion over the next four years, well below the original prediction of $22.5 billion.
Liberal senator Mathias Cormann said the refund could render last week’s budget update out of date. ‘’This casts massive doubt over Labor’s economic statement … because the revenue figures in it are clearly already out of date - again,’’ he said.
Rio was one of the three mining companies which helped Labor draft the tax. It did a good job. 

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Richo says listless Rudd is losing

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (6:37am)

Graham Richardson says Kevin Rudd has done what he was brought back for - minimising the losses - but he isn’t campaigning well and can’t win the election:

That raises the question, of course, as to whether Rudd has grown as much [as John Howard] in the three years since he was dumped ignominiously by his caucus. It certainly appeared to be so during the five weeks between his ascension and the announcement of the election date on Monday. He set about ticking every essential box. The carbon tax went, the Papua New Guinea Solution came ...
Labor’s internal polling suggests that the 52 per cent [for the Coalition] to 48 per cent two-party-preferred vote in Newspoll is spot-on. Labor seems to be holding its ground and, incredibly enough, the PNG Solution has restored much of Labor’s credibility on boat arrivals. For Labor to continue to cling on to a 39 per cent primary vote though, the Prime Minister will need to pull up his socks. During the first few days of the campaign he has appeared listless and almost irritable. If he wants Labor to maintain its popular recovery he will need to perform at his charming best. The Rudd charm offensive should work despite his critics’ contention that the charm is mostly confected. Rudd is supposed to be the great campaigner but he hasn’t looked like it in the first few days.
Dennis Shanahan is right - the first week of the campaign has sold us short:
LAST Friday, two days before the 2013 election was called, [Treasurer] Chris Bowen ... conceded that in the 10 weeks since his predecessor brought down the budget ...  the deficit had blown out to $30 billion.
In stark terms, Bowen also conceded ... there was a projected rise in unemployment to 6.25 per cent by next June - that’s about an extra 80,000 Australians out of work.
The budget blowout and burgeoning debt, the “end of the mining boom” and the fall in revenue were meant to set the scene for an election campaign in which the economy took centrestage…
Although the framework was set, there wasn’t a high-minded follow-through: the first days of the official campaign were dominated by gaffes, gotchas, scares and name-calling, with the Prime Minister spending almost as much time attacking Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation (publisher of The Australian) as Tony Abbott, and the Opposition Leader saying Rudd had a “glass jaw” while fudging the issue of costings for the Coalition’s first big announcement - a company tax cut.
The government tried its best to bury the budget bad news with inspired leaks about the election date and produced its own tricked-up costings of Coalition promises, allegedly showing a “$70bn black hole”.
The first tactic worked a treat although the second was exposed as a false claim full of double counting, and Finance Minister Penny Wong did not trot it out again…
UPDATE
Either Queensland Labor hates Rudd - or doesn’t want him to do to their finances what he’s done to the nation’s:
KEVIN Rudd’s demands for $2 million in campaign funding from Queensland Labor’s investment arm has been rejected, sparking an ugly brawl between factions within the ALP.
Mr Rudd and his political adviser, Bruce Hawker, met board members of Labor Holdings on Tuesday, seeking the cash injection from the company, which is still carrying debt from its $4.5m plunge ahead of the 2007 federal election campaign that defeated the Howard government.
But left-leaning board members, including ALP state president Dick Williams, are refusing to budge and instead have offered Mr Rudd $1m to help fund Labor’s campaign in Queensland…
Labor Party sources said a meeting yesterday in Melbourne had failed to resolve the issue…
“There are directors who have thrown up the arms and are willing to hand it over, but others either hate the Prime Minister or are concerned about the impact on the company.”
I suspect we’ll get more such leaks as the Rudd balloon deflates. 
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 

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Bishop makes herself lovable to even Gleeson

Andrew Bolt August 09 2013 (12:00am)

A dangerous format, but Julie Bishop triumphs.
UPDATE
Readers rave.

Suese2: 
Loved it. You go girl.
Flameho:

Damn - she was excellent. Well done!
nutjob2:

That was one classy interview by one classy Woman. That Classy Woman should have been the First Lady Prime Minister to boot. Well done Julie.
Steady:

Julie owned him!
Terry:

Julie Bishop has constantly grown in stature over the past few years. I used to think she was a bit wishy washy but she’s on top of her game now and, more importantly, on top of Labor’s. A few years ago an appearance such as this would have ended up as a bit of an embarrassment, and so it was this time, only for Gleeson, not Julie. He was gracious enough to admit it too!!
warcroft:
Now she is a future PM I would definitely vote for!

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Google Hangout with Tim Lester from Fairfax talking about the Federal Election & Labor’s Queensland beat up http://bit.ly/17avh4Y
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It was an absolute pleasure to have the former Prime Minister of Australia John Howard open our campaign office this morning at The Entrance.
Karen McNamara, Liberal Candidate for Dobell
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<There are no words. Seriously, I can't take it. How can a United States Senator not know how bad the situation is in Egypt? It is his job to know. South Carolina, it's about time Senator Graham's job went to someone else.>
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Quick Pix: Maureen O’Hara

http://independentfilmnewsandmedia.com/quick-pix-maureen-ohara/

Maureen O’Hara (born 17 August 1920) is an Irish film actress and singer. The famously red-headed O’Hara has been noted for playing fiercely passionate heroines with a highly sensible attitude. She often worked with director John Ford and long-time friend John Wayne. Her autobiography, ‘Tis Herself, was published in 2004 and was a New York Times Bestseller.
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VOTE OF CONFIDENCE IN THE NSW ECONOMY
ANZ’s Australian Economic Update out this week is a huge vote of confidence in NSW, predicting the state will be central in leading the national economy as it transitions from the mining boom.

The report says the NSW economy “is now outperforming the rest of Australia” and this comes “after a decade when the NSW economy underperformed”.

The latest ABS Labour Force figures also out this week confirmed the 18th consecutive month that the NSW unemployment rate has been at or below the national average.

Since 2011, NSW has created 115,400 jobs – more jobs than any other state in the country.

$92 MILLION FOR OVER 200 NEW BUSES AND 10 NEW ROUTES

The NSW Government has committed more than $90 million to fund over 200 new buses in 2013-14, including 65 new buses for Western Sydney.

There will also be 10 new routes introduced across Sydney, Western Sydney, the Hunter and the Illawarra as part of the Growth Bus Program.

The NSW Government has added more than 2,800 additional weekly bus services since 2011, and this year’s investment continues to build on that.

FINANCIAL HELP FOR NSW FARMERS

Farmers in NSW can now access concessional loans of up to $650,000 as part of the Farm Finance Concessional Loans scheme. 

The NSW Government has agreed to terms with the Australian Government, allowing eligible farm businesses to restructure existing debt in the form of low-interest loans. 

Eligible producers can apply through the NSW Rural Assistance Authority for loans of up to $650,000 with a variable interest rate starting at 4.5 per cent.

The concessional interest rate will be reviewed on a six-monthly basis and may be varied to accord with prevailing economic conditions.

HEAVY PENALTIES FOR HEAVY VEHICLES BEGIN

Tough regulations have come into effect for people who drive overheight or overlength trucks into Sydney’s tunnels and Galston Gorge.

The changes are aimed at preventing traffic chaos caused by oversized trucks becoming stuck in restricted areas, and enable RMS to suspend the heavy vehicle registration of rogue operators for three months.

The penalties are additional to what rogue drivers personally face (a $2,200 fine and the loss of six demerit points).

The changes also apply to interstate vehicles, which can be banned from entering NSW for three months.

TRANSPORT INTERCHANGE UPGRADES AT 36 KEY LOCATIONS

The NSW Government is upgrading 36 key transport interchanges across the state – investing almost $40 million to make public transport safer and easier to use. 

Interchanges need to be well lit, secure, sign-posted, protected from the elements and easy for people to navigate.

These latest upgrades include better drop off and pick up areas (called kiss and ride zones), improved lighting, signs, infrastructure, bike facilities and shelters.

30 YEARS ON - REVIEW OF THE NSW ABORIGINAL LAND RIGHTS ACT

A series of forums across NSW will allow people to provide input on proposed changes to the NSW Aboriginal Land Rights Act.

As we celebrate the 30th anniversary of an act that enshrined Aboriginal land rights in law there is also a realisation that to achieve better outcomes, changes must be made. 

Reforms designed to cut unnecessary red tape, improve the land claim process, improve management of social housing schemes and reform of the regulatory framework are up for discussion.

Details are available at the Office of the Registrar or Aboriginal Affairs NSW

NEW SMALL BIZ BUS FOR REGIONAL NSW

A second Small Biz Bus was launched in Young with two buses delivering expert business advice tailored to small business owners in rural and regional NSW. 

Since the launch of first Small Biz Bus in December last year the bus has visited more than 100 locations, and by the end of this month the first bus would have completed more than 1,000 face-to-face advisory sessions. 

Feedback to date has been extremely positive, with more than 97 per cent of small business owners saying the service was helpful. 

The Small Biz Bus is part of the NSW Government Small Biz Connect program and provides services including translation services, and advice to small business owners affected by disasters such as bushfires and floods.

MILLIONS TO BE SAVED FROM LED STREETLIGHT ROLLOUT

Councils across Sydney, the Central Coast and the Hunter are set to save millions of dollars in maintenance and energy costs under a proposed rollout of LED streetlights.

Under the plan 41 local councils will become the first in Australia to be part of a grid-wide rollout of the energy saving technology.

The lifespan of LEDs is expected to be more than 20 years, meaning councils will pay a lot less for both maintenance and power.

STRICTLY BALLROOM THE MUSICAL TO PREMIERE IN SYDNEY

Sydney has been chosen over the likes of London and New York to host the global premiere of one of the most anticipated musicals in recent times, Strictly Ballroom The Musical.

Co-writer and creator Baz Luhrmann attended the launch at Sydney Town Hall with NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell.

The much-loved Australian film that inspired the world to dance will come to life on stage in a brand new musical theatre production that will make its global premiere in Sydney from 25 March 2014. 

The show has huge appeal and will attract audiences from all over Australia and across the globe, and is expected to generate more than $20 million in visitor expenditure for NSW over a six month period.

SYDNEY FESTIVAL STUNNING AQUATIC HEADLINE ACT

The headline act for the 2014 Sydney Festival has been announced - a spectacular aquatic retelling of the oldest love story in English opera, Henry Purcell’s Baroque opera, Dido & Aeneas. 

The opera will feature 50 dancers, singers and musicians and a giant raised water tank into which dancers dive and perform underwater.

The NSW Government is providing over $5 million to support the 2014 Sydney Festival.

Find out more about the 2014 Sydney Festival
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Pastor Rick Warren
The easiest way to sabotage God's intended purpose for your life is to enter into a wrong relationship.

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Pastor Rick Warren.
http://bit.ly/AbdVMy and also http://bit.ly/pyT8mK Sadly, not a single person who's spread the lie has ever contacted me personally to see if it was true. Not one.>

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Pastor Rick Warren
I love Saddleback members' ‪#‎faithfulness‬ to Jesus.
In the ‪#‎MiddleOfSummer‬, (SoCal beach weather) worship attendance has averaged 29,164 the past 3 weeks.

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In August, tourists crowd the public beaches of our Laguna Beach but we locals know the small, hidden, quiet gems where you REALLY relax.
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Another of our favorite hidden Orange County beach spots. Great for quiet times!
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Singing in the rain .. probably likes Beethoven .. and violent movies .. ed
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Life is too short .. But love lasts .. this breaks my heart and I have to ask Him why. I don't understand the answer. It seems incomprehensible. Jailan did not have much of choice or a chance. But there was love. And so There is God. - ed

Kidspot Social forum member, Chantal, recently shared the heartbreaking story of her nephew’s short life. Her family have allowed us to reproduce it here:
“On the 20th of April 2013 my sister went into labour three weeks early and my baby nephew was born at 1:30am on my daughter’s birthday.
“One week earlier my sister began having a few contractions so she went to the hospital. When a scan was performed the doctors noticed that the baby’s small intestine appeared to be blocked, so my sister was transferred to John Hunter Hospital. The surgeon said baby Jailan had bowel atresia and that when he was 12 hours old he would be sent to theatre to cut out the blockage and reattach the intestines. The doctor was confident, and assured us that he had performed this surgery numerous times with high success rates.
“We were upset that bub had to have surgery, but reassured that it was a relatively easy and fairly common operation. (more at the link)

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Is taking a line from Christ Jesus "Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do" when people try your nerves and upset you pray for them they NEED it!

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<What sort of compassion is he talking about? Teaching kids, hell no! Being on an appropriate register for sex offenders and get a job unrelated to children.. maybe.>
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How many facts can a fact checker check if a fact checker would check facts? ed
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ad hominem attacks on a Vietnamese Australian. 


Here's a newsflash - not all boat people are refugees, not all refugees are boat people.>===

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4 her
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I feel that health insurance is to health what semiotics is to sign writing. You can study sign writing and learn the difference between signs posted by the Department for roads or railways, but that doesn't give you choice when you are standing on bitumen or tracks. Page has brilliantly illustrated a serious issue, not solved by mere money. ed
"So I asked, why are people so focused on keeping your medical history private? The answer is probably insurance. You’re very worried that you’re going to be denied insurance. That makes no sense! So we should change the rules around insurance, so they have to insure people. The whole point of insurance is that it insures everyone."

-- Google CEO Larry Page at this year's Google I/O in May
"Ben Schachter, McQuarrie: "How can you improve health care?"

"That’s a great segue from the previous question. I think it’s been difficult. We had Google Health, but we didn’t make that much progress on it. I think primarily we found that all the iss
ues were regulatory. It’s very hard to get technological leverage there. I was talking about how we’re one percent where we can be. That’s by doing real, amazing technological things. And, you know, we found in the kinds of things we were working on in health care, we weren’t able to move beyond that due to all the constraints that we were under. And so I think we’ll see amazing things in health care, but I think they’ll be things that have technological leverage, like DNA sequencing. We’re all going to have that. It’ll cost a dollar or whatever, you’re all going to have your sequence, and something amazing will happen.

I just disclosed yesterday my voice issues. I got so many great emails from people. And thoughtful advice. And I realized, you know, I kind of had the notion that stuff should be really private, but at least in my case I felt I should have done it sooner. And I’m not sure if that answer’s not true for most people. So I asked, why are people so focused on keeping your medical history private? The answer is probably insurance. You’re very worried that you’re going to be denied insurance. That makes no sense! So we should change the rules around insurance, so they have to insure people. The whole point of insurance is that it insures everyone.

So again, maybe we have a safe place where people can go and live in a world like that, where they make those kind of changes. We can see if they work, and then the world can learn from that and move on, but not everybody has to participate in it. Because I’m worried we’re not making some of the fundamental changes we need to make fast enough."

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New York City students flunk new Common Core-aligned tests; Bloomberg cheers ==>http://twitchy.com/2013/08/07/new-york-city-students-flunk-new-common-core-aligned-tests-bloomberg-cheers/
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A Wonderful Life: Jimmy Stewart, Actor and B-24 Bomber Pilot

http://independentfilmnewsandmedia.com/a-wonderful-life-jimmy-stewart-actor-and-b-24-bomber-pilot/

“It may sound corny, but what’s wrong with wanting to fight for your country? Why are people reluctant to use the word patriotism?” ~ Jimmy Stewart
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Holly Sarah Nguyen
And without FAITH it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.~ Hebrews 11:6

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Looking for some new and exciting gift ideas for Rosh Hashanah? You're not alone! So Judaica WebStore has decided to offer a ONE WEEK SALE on select best selling items from our wildly popular Yair Emanuel line. Crafted in his Jerusalem studio, his unique and beautiful works blend Jewish tradition with exciting and innovative forms and colors, a style which has made him todayone of Israel's most famous and respected commercial artists. Includes tableware, wall hangings, Judaica (candlesticks, Kiddush cups, etc) and much more! All items slashed from our already everyday low prices! Bring in the New Year in style!
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2013 J.W.G Ltd

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8-8-88: A Revolution Unfinished

Twenty-five years ago today, on 8-8-88, students led demonstrations against Burma’s brutal and oppressive military rule. They were quickly joined by hundreds of thousands of Burmese citizens from all walks of life.

The revolution sparked on August 8, 1988 was extraordinary.

People across Burma - ethnic minorities, Buddhists, Muslims, students, workers, the young and old - all peacefully demonstrated together. After decades of military rule, they showed tremendous bravery standing up to their oppressors. They took to the streets a year before Tiananmen Square, the Berlin Wall fell, the Velvet Revolution, and decades before the Arab Spring. The 8-8-88 protests gave birth to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s leadership. But too many paid the ultimate price for their pursuit of freedom. The military cracked down hard on the protesters, killing at least 3,000 and imprisoning and torturing many thousands more.

To this day, the victims of the government’s mass killings 25 years ago have not received justice, and Burma’s military still has a firm grip on its power.

Many were able to gather in Rangoon this week to honor those who gave their lives for freedom 25 years ago without bloodshed, but the dream remains unrealized, the revolution unfinished.

For the first time in a long time, there is a glimmer of hope that democracy and national reconciliation can be achieved, but tragically, the national unity among the country’s diverse ethnic and religious groups on display in 1988 has begun to give way to racism and Buddhist nationalism (ex. anti-Muslim violence and the inter-faith marriage ban). 

The courage and sacrifice of those who died on 8-8-88 must be realized by keeping the dream of achieving democracy, freedom, and justice for ALL alive. There are still hundreds of prisoners of conscience behind bars and many arbitrary arrests and detentions continue to take place across Burma. Though the Thein Sein Administration announced the lifting of some restrictions on freedom of speech, assembly, expression, and the press, activists, artists, and ordinary civilians are still being arrested for speaking out. Human rights abuses, including, but not limited to, child labor, forced relocation, sexual violence and sexual harassment, massive land confiscation, looting and shooting, are still perpetrated across the country with impunity. Despite ceasefire agreements between the Thein Sein Administration and many ethnic resistance groups, the Burmese Army continues to break the ceasefires and attack villages in ethnic minority areas.

In honoring those who sacrificed their lives to realize their dreams of freedom, let us redouble our collective efforts to advocate for genuine democracy and national reconciliation for ALL. Now more than ever, the people of Burma need our help.

In Solidarity,

USCB Team 

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mm banner28413-0
JensenSutta-Malkin-2
Photo credit: www.jensensutta.com
Hi everyone! Here's the MichelleMalkin.com newsletter for August 8th. Enjoy!

From the Blog

Michael Bloomberg’s latest fitness plan: Slow elevators to make people take the stairs

Michael Bloomberg won’t be happy until we’re all rats in his Skinner box — a place where you get a shock if you push the “sugary soda” lever and the elevators are slow by design...

Obama cancels summit meeting with Putin; ‘Reset’ button nowhere to be found

Where is that confounded reset button these days?

More From the Right Side of the Web

Featured Video

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This morning on "FOX & Friends," Michelle talked about the Ft. Hood trial and President Priorities' "Tonight Show" appearance.

Michelle's Top Tweets

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And ... Our Hate Tweet of the Day

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Probably pretty safe to assume that Lee doesn't read many history books — or any books, really.

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North and east walls of the Sistine Chapel

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Events[edit source | editbeta]

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Holidays and observances[edit source | editbeta]


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“For the LORD takes delight in his people; he crowns the humble with victory.” Psalm 149:4 NIV
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Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon

Morning

"They weave the spider's web."
Isaiah 59:5
See the spider's web, and behold in it a most suggestive picture of the hypocrite's religion. It is meant to catch his prey: the spider fattens himself on flies, and the Pharisee has his reward. Foolish persons are easily entrapped by the loud professions of pretenders, and even the more judicious cannot always escape. Philip baptized Simon Magus, whose guileful declaration of faith was so soon exploded by the stern rebuke of Peter. Custom, reputation, praise, advancement, and other flies, are the small game which hypocrites take in their nets. A spider's web is a marvel of skill: look at it and admire the cunning hunter's wiles. Is not a deceiver's religion equally wonderful? How does he make so barefaced a lie appear to be a truth? How can he make his tinsel answer so well the purpose of gold? A spider's web comes all from the creature's own bowels. The bee gathers her wax from flowers, the spider sucks no flowers, and yet she spins out her material to any length. Even so hypocrites find their trust and hope within themselves; their anchor was forged on their own anvil, and their cable twisted by their own hands. They lay their own foundation, and hew out the pillars of their own house, disdaining to be debtors to the sovereign grace of God. But a spider's web is very frail. It is curiously wrought, but not enduringly manufactured. It is no match for the servant's broom, or the traveller's staff. The hypocrite needs no battery of Armstrongs to blow his hope to pieces, a mere puff of wind will do it. Hypocritical cobwebs will soon come down when the besom of destruction begins its purifying work. Which reminds us of one more thought, viz., that such cobwebs are not to be endured in the Lord's house: he will see to it that they and those who spin them shall be destroyed forever. O my soul, be thou resting on something better than a spider's web. Be the Lord Jesus thine eternal hiding-place.

Evening

"All things are possible to him that believeth."
Mark 9:23
Many professed Christians are always doubting and fearing, and they forlornly think that this is the necessary state of believers. This is a mistake, for "all things are possible to him that believeth"; and it is possible for us to mount into a state in which a doubt or a fear shall be but as a bird of passage flitting across the soul, but never lingering there. When you read of the high and sweet communions enjoyed by favoured saints, you sigh and murmur in the chamber of your heart, "Alas! these are not for me." O climber, if thou hast but faith, thou shalt yet stand upon the sunny pinnacle of the temple, for "all things are possible to him that believeth." You hear of exploits which holy men have done for Jesus; what they have enjoyed of him; how much they have been like him; how they have been able to endure great persecutions for his sake; and you say, "Ah! as for me, I am but a worm; I can never attain to this." But there is nothing which one saint was, that you may not be. There is no elevation of grace, no attainment of spirituality, no clearness of assurance, no post of duty, which is not open to you if you have but the power to believe. Lay aside your sackcloth and ashes, and rise to the dignity of your true position; you are little in Israel because you will be so, not because there is any necessity for it. It is not meet that thou shouldst grovel in the dust, O child of a King. Ascend! The golden throne of assurance is waiting for you! The crown of communion with Jesus is ready to bedeck your brow. Wrap yourself in scarlet and fine linen, and fare sumptuously every day; for if thou believest, thou mayst eat the fat of kidneys of wheat; thy land shall flow with milk and honey, and thy soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness. Gather golden sheaves of grace, for they await thee in the fields of faith. "All things are possible to him that believeth."
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Today's reading: Psalm 74-76, Romans 9:16-33 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Psalm 74-76

maskil of Asaph.
1 O God, why have you rejected us forever?
Why does your anger smolder against the sheep of your pasture?
2 Remember the nation you purchased long ago,
the people of your inheritance, whom you redeemed-
Mount Zion, where you dwelt.
3 Turn your steps toward these everlasting ruins,
all this destruction the enemy has brought on the sanctuary.
4 Your foes roared in the place where you met with us;
they set up their standards as signs.
5 They behaved like men wielding axes
to cut through a thicket of trees.
6 They smashed all the carved paneling
with their axes and hatchets.
7 They burned your sanctuary to the ground;
they defiled the dwelling place of your Name.
8 They said in their hearts, "We will crush them completely!"
They burned every place where God was worshiped in the land....

Today's New Testament reading: Romans 9:16-33

16 It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God's mercy. 17 For Scripture says to Pharaoh: "I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth."18Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden.
19 One of you will say to me: "Then why does God still blame us? For who is able to resist his will?" 20 But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? "Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, 'Why did you make me like this?'"21Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use?
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Rhoda

The Woman Who Was Called Mad
Scripture Reference - Acts 12:1-19
Name Meaning - Foreign born, this domestic servant of Mary the mother of Mark had a Greek name meaning "rose." Wilkinson remarks that as "Barnabas, Mary's brother, was of the country of Cyprus, it is a very reasonable supposition that the family had been resident there, and brought thence this maiden, who, like so many of her nation born in foreign parts, had received a Greek name." Although she carried one of the most beautiful names she was called by another not so pleasant. The saints in Mary's home called her Manias meaning, "a mad woman."
In the human episode in which Rhoda is the prominent character, nothing is said of pedigree. As a slave-maid she did not merit any genealogy. As a servant, she had no hours. The fact that it was long past midnight when Peter reached Mary's house, and that Rhoda the portress answered the door, indicates that she was willing to serve long and late. Mary, her mistress, also found in Rhoda a spiritual help. Doubtless she, too, was on her knees with the others praying for Peter, and hearing his knock went to the door. Perhaps we can break up the narrative in this threefold way. Peter knocked - Rhoda was shocked - The saints mocked.
Peter Knocked
The background of the record which Rhoda shares can be briefly cited. Mary of Jerusalem, a rich widow and mother of Mark the evangelist, owned a large and conspicuous house in the city which she placed at the service of the Lord. During the days of terrible persecution the saints in Jerusalem gathered regularly in her lovely home not only for the reading and exposition of the Word, but also to pray for afflicted saints. On the night in question the saints concentrated on the deliverance of a precious life, namely, Peter their leader. Herod's sword of persecution had fallen heavily upon the church in Jerusalem. James the Greater had already drunk the cup of martyrdom prophesied for him by his Lord, and the gathered intercessors had learned that Peter, imprisoned by Herod, was the next to be led forth to die. If their shepherd was smitten what could the sheep do. Such a crisis brought Peter's fellow believers to their knees in night-long intercession.
As the church in the house earnestly petitioned the Lord, their prayers were heard. In the prison the Lord, by means of an angel, miraculously freed Peter. Peter sped past guards and through opened doors, and came to the closed door of a house where he knew the saints were gathered together praying. Peter knocked at the door, but because of Rhoda's excitement, she failed to open the door. Peter continued knocking until the door was opened, not by angelic hands, as at the prison he had left, but by unbelieving human hands. Such a delay might have been dangerous, if the guards, discovering their prisoner had escaped, had tracked him down and found him standing at the closed gate of Mary's ancient house.
Rhoda Was Shocked
Peter not only knocked but also spoke, for we read that she knew his voice - the dear voice she had listened to so often expounding the sacred truths of the Word. But she was so stunned and overwhelmed at the answer to those midnight prayers standing there, that she failed to draw the bolts and admit Peter. "She opened not the gate for gladness." Such gladness would have been changed to sadness had Herod's soldiers appeared at that moment and taken Peter back to prison. We can understand Rhoda not opening the gate as soon as she heard the knock. "Never open a door in the dark until you know who is behind it." In those days when the saints were not sure who would be the next to join the noble army of martyrs, great caution was necessary. That knock might have been the summons of cruel Herod, making a fresh inroad on the little flock. But when Rhoda asked, "Who is knocking?" and received the muffled reply, "It is Peter, open quickly," she should have opened the gate before opening her mouth to others in the house about Peter standing outside. Knowing that for certain it was Peter, it was her duty as the maid to open the door. But stunned by the glad tidings she was momentarily thoughtless.
There are some characteristics of this maidservant who only has this one notice in Scripture, which are attractive. First, unbounded joy was hers. Luke, the beloved physician, who wrote the Acts, analyzes Rhoda's state of consciousness when the good news of answered prayer on Peter's behalf overpowered her presence of mind. She forgot herself - and her duty - and ran in to tell the intercessors to pray no more for Peter was at the gate. We can imagine how excitedly she shouted, "Peter is free! Peter is knocking at the door!" A spontaneous child of nature, she manifested her exuberance. Had hers been a calmer, less passionate nature, she would have opened the door when she knew it was Peter, and then gone in to tell the praying band that Peter was safe and free.
Further, when her good, glad information was scorned by the saints whose prayers for Peter had been interrupted by Rhoda's joyous outburst, "she constantly affirmed that it was even so." Her young heart believed in God and in the power of prayer, and knowing definitely that prayer had been answered, she would not suffer the praying band in the house of her mistress to browbeat her into silence. Although only the maid, she was not to be subdued by the sarcastic criticism of the large congregation present. She knew it was Peter, and nothing could move her from that belief. Rhoda wore the red rose of courage so beautifully as she persisted against opposition to constantly affirm the truth.
The Saints Mocked
How revealing was the reaction of those gathered together to Rhoda's excited announcement. First of all, they told the glad maid that she was mad . They accused her of insanity! But Rhoda was in good company because it had been said of the Saviour whom she had come to know and love, "He is beside Himself." Then, when Paul's eye kindled with the glory of his message, just as the face of Rhoda glowed as she told of answered prayer, Festus said of the Apostle, "Thou art beside thyself, much learning doth make thee mad." The prophet speaks about the spiritual man being mad (Hosea 9:7 ). Have we ever been thought mad for Christ, or fools for His sake? We are in the best of company if others sneer at us as we declare and live the message of God's power through Christ. But being told she had lost her senses did not deter Rhoda from the repetition of what she knew to be true.
Departing from their accusation, the band said, "It is his angel." Failing to move Rhoda from her persistent testimony, the saints treated her message as coming from the dead. It was a common Jewish belief that every true Israelite had a guardian angel especially assigned to him, who, when he appeared in human form, assumed the likeness of the man whom he protected. The continued knocking of Peter, however, stifled that interpretation of Rhoda's testimony because guardian angels are not prevented from carrying out their mission by closed doors. So, feeling that there was something insistently human about that constant knocking "they opened the door, saw Peter, and were astonished."
Astonished! How this description of their feelings revealed their unbelief! They had been praying for hours for Peter, yet when Peter stood at the door they did not believe it. Lack of faith was mingled with their intercessions, and so they were surprised at the miracle God had performed in Peter's escape from prison. Our Lord instructed His disciples to pray believingly. "When ye ask, believe that ye receive." Spurgeon once said, "If the Lord wants to surprise His people, He has only at once to give them an answer. No sooner do they receive an answer than they say, 'Who would have thought it?'" Mary of Jerusalem came to value her godly maid, Rhoda, more than ever because of the great assistance she had rendered that memorable day. And once in the house, Peter must have commended her for her persistence.
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Enoch, Henoch

[Ē'nŏch,Hē'nŏch] - teacher, initiated, dedicated.
  1. The eldest son of Cain, who had a city called after him (Gen. 4:17, 18; 1 Chron. 1:3).
  2. A son of Jared, a descendant of Seth and father of Methuselah (Gen. 5:18-23; Luke 3:37; Heb. 11:5; Jude 14).

The Man Who Was Missed

In some six verses the Bible sets forth the brief biography of this Old Testament saint - but what a biography! We know nothing of the rank or profession of Enoch. Two things of great interest characterize him, namely, his holy life on earth and his glorious exit from earth.
Enoch walked with God. Twice over we are reminded of this evident fact. The wicked are "without God." Enoch was at peace with God. Although born a child of wrath, he became a child of grace. He must have been at peace with God; two cannot walk together unless they be agreed (Amos 3:3).
Enoch enjoyed close communion with God . What a real union of hearts the repeated phrase, "walked with God" implies! What sweet hours of holy and happy intercourse God and Enoch must have had as they communed with each other. There was never a cloud between their fellowship. God was a pleasure to Enoch, and Enoch pleased God.
Enoch was separated from the world. This seventh man from Adam did not walk in the way of the sinners of his corrupt age. His character and conduct were a distinct rebuke to the godless around. Jude tells us that Enoch functioned as a prophet, declaring God's just judgment upon the unrighteousness of his time.
Enoch's life was one of progress . Walking with God implies a steady progress in his course. He did not walk for awhile and then stand still. Each day found him nearer the divine goal. In unbroken companionship with his Friend, he found himself more weaned from the world and more ripe for heaven. He did not attempt to walk alone to heaven. He walked with God, and as he took each step his eyes were fixed on his heavenly Companion.
Enoch had an unusually glorious end . He is the only one of the line of whom it is not said that "he died." He was not - God took him. "He was not" suggests that his friends sought for him. He was a missing person they could not trace. "God took him," which means he was translated that he should not taste death. Among the millions upon millions of men who have lived, only two out of the vast number never died - Enoch and Elijah! Andrew Bonar has the sweet suggestion that God and Enoch were in the habit of taking a long walk together every day and that one day God said to his companion, "Why go home? Come all the way with Me." Thus at 365 years of age - a year for every day of our year - God took His servant directly to heaven.
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August 8, 2011
Changing the Way We Speak By
Examining the Heart
Today's Truth
Jesus said, "What goes into a man's mouth does not make him 'unclean,' but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him 'unclean...But things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man 'unclean'" (Matthew 15:11,18 NIV).
Friend To Friend
While it is the Holy Spirit that gives us the power to change the words we speak, the desire to change begins in the heart. The Bible says:
"Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit...For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil out of the evil stored up in him. But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted and by your words you will condemned" (Matthew 12:33-37).
The word heart that is used in this passage is the Greek wordkardia. It is not referring to the blood pumping muscle in the chest cavity, but to our thoughts, motives, feelings, our will, and our character. The kardia is the seat of our emotions and represents the inner person. The words that escape our lips reveal the condition of the inner man.
Remember the children's song:
I'm a little teapot short and stout,
Here is my handle, here is my spout.
When I get all steamed up hear me shout,
Just tip me over and pour me out.
Well I don't know about you, but when I get all steamed up, what comes out of my mouth isn't always a cup of tea! It is in those unguarded moments of frustration, anger, or pain that our mouths tend to spew out what is really inside. Jesus said, "What goes into a man's mouth does not make him 'unclean,' but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him 'unclean...But things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man 'unclean'" (Matthew 15:11,18 ). Jesus continually pointed out the condition of the Pharisees' hearts. They clung to outward religious practices. But God desired their hearts, which were hardened and cold.
The book of Proverbs has much to say about how the condition of our heart affects what we say.
  • Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. (Proverbs 4:23)
  • The wise in heart accept commands, but a chattering fool comes to ruin. (Proverbs 10:8)
  • A prudent man keeps his knowledge to himself, but theheart of fools blurts out folly. Proverbs 12:23)
  • An anxious heart weights a man down, but a kind wordcheers him up. (Proverbs 12:25)
  • The discerning heart seeks knowledge, but the mouth of a fool feeds on folly. (Proverbs 15:14)
  • The heart of the righteous weighs its answers, but themouth of the wicked gushes evil. (Proverbs 15:28 TNIV)
  • A cheerful look brings joy to the heart, and good newsgives health to the bones. (Proverbs 15:30)
  • The wise in heart are called discerning, and pleasant wordspromote instruction. (Proverbs 16:21)
  • The hearts of the wise make their mouths prudent, and their lips promote instruction. (Proverbs 16:23 TNIV)
  • One who loves a pure heart and who speaks with grace will have the king for a friend. (Proverbs 22:11 TNIV)
  • Like a coating of glaze over earthenware are fervent lipswith an evil heart. (Proverbs 26:23)
  • Enemies disguise themselves with their lips, but in theirhearts they harbor deceit. Though their speech is charming, do not believe them, for seven abominations fill their hearts. (Proverbs 26:24, 25 TNIV)
  • As the water reflects a face, so one's life reflects theheart. (Often that reflection is through spoken words) (Proverbs 27:18 TNIV)
So, how's your heart? The heart of the matter is a matter of the heart.
Let's Pray
Dear LORD, Examine my heart today and reveal to me any areas of my life that I need to change. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and restore a right spirit within me.
In Jesus' Name,
Amen
Now It's Your Turn
Turn to Psalm 51 and make that your prayer today.
To comment on today's devotion, visitwww.sharonjaynes.com/blog .
More From The Girlfriends
Today's devotion is taken from Sharon's book The Power of a Woman's Words In this book, you can explore the power you possess, the people you impact, the potential for change, and the profound possibilities. As you harness this mighty force, you will begin to use words to speak life to those around you. Get one for yourself, or gather a group of girlfriends to learn and grow together.
Seeking God?
Click here to find out more about
how to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
Girlfriends in God
P.O. Box 725
Matthews, NC 28106
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P31Header
Wendy Pope
August 8, 2011
The Prayer that Changed My Life
Wendy Pope
"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us..." Ephesians 3:20 (NIV)
Twenty-two thousand women sat on the edge of their seats as the teacher standing center stage asked, "Do you want to have an insatiable love for Jesus?" Her words hung in the air. Then she answered, "Pray to. If you want an insatiable love for Jesus, then pray to."
Scrambling to find my pen and struggling to spell the word insatiable, I wrote these simple yet powerful words in my conference notebook. The words stung my heart. As they fell from her lips, I knew this was a love for Jesus I did not have.
What I did have was church membership, a lot of church service, and some love. While Jesus was my Savior, something was missing.
I realized I had asked Jesus to be my Savior but not allowed Him to be my Lord. I loved Him for what He did but not for who He was. At age 34, I wanted to cry out this "pray to" prayer. But I wondered, "What must God think of me?"
Service to Him had been my life. Dedication to my church was paramount. But love? How could I not reallylove Jesus? Certainly He would be disinclined to hear such an elementary prayer from a grown woman who'd been a Christian much of her life.
My thoughts were misguided. It was a prayer God wanted to answer immeasurably more than I could think or imagine. He wanted me to have an insatiable love for Him!
The speaker's challenge that day became a lifestyle of prayer for me. Over time the emptiness in my heart was filled with a love for Jesus I had never known. My heart not only praised Him for what He had done in my life, but now loved Him for who He was: my Lord.
My obedience and service started to flow from a heart of love instead of duty. Lies that once shaped my life and negative feelings about myself where shattered by the honesty and power of His Word. The security of knowing Him as Lord gave me what I had been looking for my whole life. I found freedom in knowing who I am and courage to live like it's true.
The promise and power of today's key verse proved faithful in my life, changing me forever. Today, I want to challenge and invite you the same. Do you want to love Jesus with an insatiable love?
If you want to, then pray to.
Humble yourself before the Lord and ask Him to help you love Him. He will give you immeasurably more than you can imagine. Over time the emptiness in your heart will be filled with a love for Jesus you have never known. Your heart will praise Him for what He has done and for who He is-your Lord. If you want to, pray to.
Dear Lord, I want to love You with an insatiable love. Answer my prayer immeasurably more than I can think of or imagine. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Related Resources:
Do You Know Him?
The prayer that changed Wendy's life gave her an insatiable love for Jesus and opened doors for her to surrender her life in ministry. God has uniquely gifted Wendy to teach a daily online Bible Study on her blog. Visit today and sign up to receive her daily posts atWalking with Women through the Word.
Wendy wrote about the changes God made in her life as she prayed the "pray to" prayer in her book, Out of the Mouths of Babes. Read it today to see what God can do when you "pray to."
When you purchase resources through Proverbs 31 Ministries, you touch eternity because your purchase supports the many areas of hope-giving ministry we provide at no cost. We wish we could, but we simply can't compete with prices offered by huge online warehouses. Therefore, we are extremely grateful for each and every purchase you make with us. Thank you!
Application Steps:
Commit to "pray to." Pray the "pray to" prayer until you begin to experience Him every day. Journal the changes God is makes in you life.
Reflections:
What is the Lord teaching me through today's devotion?
How will I respond to this "pray to" challenge?
Power Verses:
Psalm 54:2, "Hear my prayer, O God; Give ear to the words of my mouth." (NIV 1984)
Psalm 69:13, "But I pray to you, LORD, in the time of your favor; in your great love, O God, answer me with your sure salvation." (NIV)
Romans 8:26, "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans." (NIV)
© 2011 by Wendy Pope. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105
www.Proverbs31.org
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LeadershipBible-Header-550

Leadership Principle: Long-range Planning

Read Genesis 3:15.
Looking ahead into the future, that great unknown, is an integral characteristic of effective leadership. Although as a leader you may not possess a crystal ball to foretell what the futurewill bring, you can and should be planning for what it may bring.
God demonstrated his ability to foresee the future in Genesis 3:15. After the sin of Adam and Eve, God looked far into the years ahead and declared what would come to pass. God warned that there would beenmityor hostility between the serpent (Satan) and the future offspring of Eve (Christ). Satan would strike his heel,referring to the painful death of Christ on the cross. But that was not the end of the story. Christ wouldcrush the head of the serpent. While Satan would appear to have won when Jesus died on the cross, Satan would be the ultimate loser in this great spiritual battle.
God looked far into the future and saw his glorious victory over all the forces of evil, those mighty forces that were unleashed as a result of one little bite of a piece of forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. Back then God unveiled a plan that would unfold thousands of years later on a cross outside of Jerusalem. As the ultimate leader, he made certain that the direction of the history of the human race was headed toward our salvation.
Take some time to discover the direction in which you and those you lead are headed. Where do you see yourself and your team in five years? In ten years?
Long-range Planning and Who God Is
Without question, God is the ultimate long-range planner. His purposes encompass the whole range from eternity to eternity and extend to every part of his dominion. From a short-range perspective, things may appear to be out of control, but God is ordering all things in such a way that they will reach a glorious consummation. Turn to Isaiah 37:26 to consider the long-range plans ordained by God.
This Week's Verse to Memorize

Proverbs 4:25-27: Let your eyes look straight ahead, fix your gaze directly before you. Make level paths for your feet and take only ways that are firm. Do not swerve to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.
Long-range Planning and Who I Am

Spontaneity is valuable and sometimes necessary, but the consequences would be disastrous if most of our life's direction were left to serendipity and happenstance. Planning and evaluating performance with long-term goals and objectives in mind requires discipline, but this discipline inevitably leads to greater freedom. Turn to Proverbs 6:6-8 for a word on the value of long-range planning and discipline.
Long-range Planning and How It Works

Leadership suggests movement. Where are we heading? is a question which every responsible follower must ask and every responsible leader must answer. How, when no one can know the future with a high degree of certainty, can anyone have the courage to summon others toFollow meIsaiah 30:1-5 illustrates one critical variable in the process.
Long-range Planning and What I Do

Planning is crucial. But sometimes leaders need to respond to and take advantage of changes in the environment. Paul did this, and Karl Albrecht gives us some insight into how we can too. Turn to Romans 15:22-29 for today's reading.

handbookleadership

Handbook to Leadership: Leadership in the Image of God

by Kenneth Boa
Buy the Handbook!
All the features of The Leadership Bible created by Kenneth Boa, Sid Buzzell, and Bill Perkins have been combined in this attractive and compact black leather volume. Handbook to Leadership has four parts: 52-Week Leadership Guide, Topical Leadership Guide, Leadership Character Studies, and Books of the Bible Leadership Guide.

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