Saturday, January 18, 2014

Sat Jan 18th Todays News

Many are reliant on the Royal Commission into institutionalised sexual abuse to show their wounds, and let the healing begin. As crimes go, it is pernicious, with victims losing their voice in the community, as well as quality of life. Which is why it is disappointing that a focus has been placed on the Catholic Church and the claims of a detective who has an agenda. The Catholic Church has terrible stories of abuse, but not more so than other institutions which care for children. It could be argued that the Catholic church is in fact cleaner than other organisations that are similar. One glaring international example is the PLO, which seems to have UN approval in abusing children. Or North Korea. The profile of the detective's activity also calls into question the entire police force's management. It is unprofessional at best. And so those waiting for the Royal Commission to hear them, must wait for the incompetent to stop their obstructions. Justice delayed is justice denied.
Working very hard to deny justice is the Overland, which refuses to publish conservatives. I wouldn't subscribe to Overland, but my taxes pay for it, so I have no choice. I am reminded of when I was asked to start a business, and told I could get off unemployment, get assistance to further my education and not have to have an income test. I applied, but when I told them I would be starting a conservative email subscription I was refused, because, as I was told, it needed to be for the entire community. 
It is summer and very warm. But the projected highs have failed to materialise. The reason for the heatwave has nothing to do with global warming, but is to do with a correctable problem of a bone dry desert in central Australia. The sun heats the land, and the hot air disperses the heat out at sea. If we flooded central Australia with something like a Bradfield scheme we could see an end to the heat waves. 
Persons of Interest on SBS, highlighting how ASIO tracked communists in the past shows an ASIO that worked. It is admitted by the communists observed that they wanted violent overthrow of the government of the day. But you wouldn't know it watching the program. I am reminded of a movie highlighting the paranoid nature of the CIA operative who founded their counter insurgency work. He had believed that the communists in the cold war infiltrated the highest levels of Western Society. Records show they had. 
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Hatches
Happy birthday and many happy returns Lyn Vo and Mary MacMahon. Born on the same day, across the years, along with
Matches
Despatches
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POETS BANNED AT OVERLAND

Tim Blair – Saturday, January 18, 2014 (1:23pm)

Tax-mooching suckwads at Overland blacklist poets who are tainted by conservative association, including Labor voter Joe Dolce: 
I have just been advised in writing by Peter Minter, the poetry editor of Overland magazine, that as of 2014 he will not be publishing ANY poets who publish in Quadrant and that he doesn’t ‘wish to have any association with the authors of a journal edited by Keith Windschuttle.’ His ‘New Year’s Resolution’ apparently.
Uh oh! I guess that means no Xmas cards for Les Murray, Sharon Olds, Jennifer Compton, Clive James, Christopher Koch (RIP), Rod Usher, Christopher Heathcote, Lin van Hek, A. D. Hope, Barry Humphries, me and hundreds of other Australian and International writers who appear in Quadrant.
This probably also explains why Mr Minter has rejected every poem I have submitted to him over the past two years. 
Overland‘s verse-averse reverse McCarthyism is brought to you by your own taxes.
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Has global warming hype made us weather pussies?

Andrew Bolt January 18 2014 (10:00am)


The Sydney Morning Herald’s environment editor, warmist Peter Hannam, beat up Sydney’s ”heatwave” two days ago
The huge heatwave searing most of south-eastern Australia will again lap against Sydney’s western and southern flanks on Friday, with no real relief expected for most of the city until Monday.
Has global warming turned us into warming pussies? Yes, out at Penrith the temperature touched 39. But for the rest, Sydney seemed to have a perfectly normal week of summer weather:

image
Reader Andrew says Channel 9 was even worse:
Ch 9 Sydney talking it up (and not understanding the concept of Urban Heat Island). “Parts of Sydney swelter in its 4th consecutive day of extreme heat.” Apparently it was hot in Penrith in the far west.
These “consecutive days of extreme heat” have been 28, 29, 28 and 28. In Sydney. It’s January.
It’s like some news outlets want the heat to seem ever hotter than it is.
UPDATE
Reader Steve noted something similar in Adelaide on Thursday:
Hi Andrew, all morning we were told by the collective news broadcasts that Adelaide would have the hottest temperature on record. The ABC news pair discussed the design of our houses not suitable for climate change, and the impending doom for us all. 
Surprisingly, no record was broken. The ninemsn headline below should read, Climate Change Cult Wrong.

Adelaide misses out on record high ninemsn staff with AAP 6:24pm January 16, 2014
Adelaide has fallen short of a record top temperature but South Australia has still sweltered through the fourth day of a forecast five-day heatwave
The city was tipped to have a maximum of 46C on Thursday, very close to the record of 46.1C set on January 12, 1939. But the top was 44.2C with the mercury dipping to 42.5C by 5pm....
The five days at 40C or above will make it the city’s third worst heatwave on record.
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Warmist Schmidt bets very small

Andrew Bolt January 18 2014 (9:40am)


Professor Brian Schmidt takes up a bet:
IN his article ”Mother nature suggests the party’s over for IPCC” ..., Maurice Newman ...  challenges readers with a quote from eminent climate scientist Richard Lindzen about him being “willing to take bets that the global average temperatures in 20 years will in fact be lower than they are now”, and then asks: “Any takers?"…
Mr Newman, I am prepared to put $10,000 on the line that the Earth’s average surface air temperature in a three-year average (2013-15 compared with 2033-35) will be warmer 20 years from now.
Jo Nova notes how modest that wager really is:
In 2007 the IPCC seemed to be 90% confident that the world would warm by about 0.4 degrees over the next two decades. Now Brian Schmidt braves up to offer a bet of “anything above zero”. Is he really a sceptic? It appears so.
(Thanks to reader James.) 
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Let’s laugh at Max laughing at ASIO

Andrew Bolt January 18 2014 (9:04am)


Max Ogden gloats in the (uncritical) Age:
The four-part series Persons of Interest on SBS has taken me back to the days when I was put under surveillance by ASIO agents. As has been noted by various academics, including David McKnight, ASIO’s incompetence was legendary. This point was only emphasised after my partner and I spent a few days in the National Archives reading room going through the 25 folders that ASIO had kept on me. At times we had to contain ourselves from laughing. Up to 90 per cent was either wrong or so mundane as to be meaningless.
Silly spies, bothering themselves about harmless Max, who continues:
A lifelong labour movement activist and union official, including at the ACTU, I spent 25 years in the (quite legal) Communist Party, much of that time in the state and national leadership. Virtually everything I was involved with was on the public record…
A note in my file suggests that operatives should be honest about their mistakes and learn from them, but that such surveillance was important.  However, such activities, without proper checks and balances, did immeasurable harm to law-abiding citizens.
What “immeasurable harm to law-abiding citizens”?
And if mistakes should be confessed, where is good old Max’s apologia? This is, after all, a man who devoted himself to a totalitarian creed that had already enslaved tens of millions of people. This is a man who helped lead a party which long pledged loyalty to the Stalinist Soviet Union. 
(Ogden also joined Julia Gillard’s Socialist Alliance before finding a home at Melbourne University’s Foundation for Sustainable Economic Development is his own march through the institutions. The McKnight he quotes is another former communist functionary given grants and a university job, teaching future journalists.)
If we must laugh at mistakes, let’s laugh at Max Ogden’s. They are far more serious.
UPDATE
A reality check from Gerard Henderson:

As Mark Aarons documents in his 2010 book The Family File, the CPA received funding and direction from Moscow and CPA members operated openly in the trade union movement and secretly in the Labor Party. He is the son of one-time leading CPA functionary Laurie Aarons.
In his 1993 memoir What’s Left, Eric Aarons conceded that if the CPA had come to power in Australia it would have killed its opponents.
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A church accuser accused

Andrew Bolt January 18 2014 (8:29am)


I had my doubts from the start about the ABC’s star witness for the prosecution of the Catholic Church - a witness of the kind that tends to thrive in a witch-hunt. As I noted last year:
Chief Inspector Peter Fox was the ABC’s star witness in the case against the Catholic Church, and had his every claim taken at face value.
But I thought there was something just too glib, too eager, about him. He seemed to nurse a contempt for Catholics.  I have from the start regarded his evidence with suspicion, not least after he kept referring to Cardinal Pell as “Mr Pell”.
And now:


A FAIRFAX reporter who spent years working with the detective at the centre of a NSW government inquiry into Catholic church child abuse said yesterday the policeman might have been motivated by a personal agenda against his colleagues. The reporter, Joanne McCarthy of The Newcastle Herald, moved to distance herself from the detective, Peter Fox, telling the NSW Special Commission of Inquiry that “my job, as he sees it, is to criticise the NSW Police”.
The inquiry was established after Detective Chief Inspector Fox publicly claimed he was “ordered to stand down” from the investigation into an alleged cover-up relating to a pedophile priest, Denis McAlinden…
The officer in charge of Strike Force Lantle, Jeffrey Little, told the hearing that many of Chief Inspector Fox’s other public claims, including that the investigation was “set up to fail”, were untrue.
“ . . . the mere fact that he’s ridden to glory on a saddle of lies at this point is a concern for me,” Sergeant Little said…
The lie:

DCI Fox told the inquiry he intentionally disobeyed an order from the Newcastle commander Max Mitchell to bring all his investigation documents…
“So you lied to the police at the meeting?” she said.
PETER FOX...: Oh absolutely yes, I deliberately kept them myself
More:

JAMELLE WELLS: Peter Fox was cross-examined by Wayne Roser, the barrister for a number of police officers appearing at the inquiry. He accused Peter Fox of breaching a suppression order by tweeting information about witnesses....
Fox was remarkably chummy with journalists, not least on the ABC:

The NSW Police Force has painted whistleblower Peter Fox as a troublemaker who passed on confidential documents to journalists to undermine the sex abuse investigation he was excluded from in 2010 in the hope he could write a book about it… He read out emails from Inspector Fox to ABC journalist Suzanne Smith asking to drip feed information saying “it will only give us longer coverage"…
The inspector denied his answers were produced or that he had written a book. 
Yesterday:

WHISTLEBLOWER policeman Peter Fox used emails sent in his wife’s name to discuss a confidential criminal investigation with a newspaper reporter after being banned from talking to the journalist himself.
And it gets worse:

THE detective doesn’t pause before he says it. Interviewed on the ABC’s Lateline program that will trigger the royal commission, he describes a female victim of child abuse who once contacted him, saying, “The only police officer I will speak to is Peter Fox”.
This week, freshly released evidence from a state inquiry shows the woman denies ever saying these words.
Worse, the victim tells the inquiry, Detective Chief Inspector Fox in fact called her, using a telephone number provided by a newspaper reporter. He later emailed her witness statement to the journalist, without consent, who published parts of it, again without permission.
In an email tendered to the state inquiry the victim, who cannot be named, writes, “I should not have been used this way ... I have been ‘abused’ once again.”
Since that Lateline broadcast in November 2012, others have also challenged claims made by the man once dubbed the “hero cop"…
Broadly speaking, Fox makes two landmark claims on Lateline; that the Catholic Church covered up child sex abuse by priests, and that he was “ordered to stand down” from the police investigation of one such pedophile.
So potentially significant are these, a NSW Special Commission of Inquiry is established to investigate. The first major challenge to the detective’s evidence comes on the very first day.
Giving evidence, Fox says the Nationals MP and former NSW policeman Troy Grant told him a “Catholic mafia” existed within the police “who were attempting to discourage investigations into clergy”.
Grant, the inquiry hears, has given sworn evidence contradicting this, saying he never said, nor believed, such a thing…
His “irrefutable” statement on Lateline that Catholic priests destroyed evidence of sexual crimes against children turns out, the inquiry hears, to refer to a single case of adult pornography once owned by a priest.
Embarrassing, certainly, but not illegal, nor evidence of any crime.
Nor, according to police evidence to the inquiry, was Fox “ordered to stand down” from the strike force set up to investigate the alleged cover-up of abuse committed by a Hunter Valley priest, Denis McAlinden.
He was never on this strike force, the inquiry hears. Instead, he pursued his own private investigation of McAlinden, with his bosses unaware what he was doing.
How did Peter Fox come to be such a media hero?
Beware the stars in a witch hunt. 
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Indonesia’s frigate should stop the boats, not our navy

Andrew Bolt January 18 2014 (7:52am)


Professor Tim Lindsay says Indonesia’s navy is too small to stop the boats :

On its own assessment, the Indonesian navy probably only has about 25 working, seaworthy ships available for operations at any one time and it has no coastguard. Indonesia’s obvious strategic sea defence weakness is one reason it has been so reluctant a partner with Australia in our efforts to stop people smuggling. It simply lacks the practical capacity to do much about it.
But Indonesia’s navy seems big enough to stop Australia from stopping the boats:
Jakarta has demanded an immediate halt to the Abbott government’s asylum-seeker turnbacks policy and announced it will send a frigate to bolster its southern defences after Australian ships repeatedly breached Indonesian territorial waters.
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Someone must be top dog, so worry if it’s not the US

Andrew Bolt January 18 2014 (7:42am)


The Left is getting the relatively weaker and more timid US military power many wanted, but I doubt this will bring the blessings they vaguely assumed:

Three years after the Pentagon said it was de-emphasizing Europe in favor of the Asia-Pacific region, Navy Adm. Samuel J. Locklear III said this week that U.S. dominance has weakened in the shadow of a more aggressive China.
“Our historic dominance that most of us in this room have enjoyed is diminishing, no question,” Adm. Locklear, chief of U.S. Pacific Command, said Wednesday at a naval conference in Virginia.
Dean Cheng of the Heritage Foundation defines the problem:
The… assumption is that we can somehow mold China into being ourselves — that China will see its interests as somehow congruent and coincident with those of the United States, and therefore China will assume the mantle of regional provider of public goods. But this is a remarkable assumption, especially in light of recent Chinese behavior. China is not interested in providing security for everyone and, frankly, not even for anyone other than itself.
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A second generation more dangerous than their parents

Andrew Bolt January 18 2014 (7:24am)


We must change our old assumptions about immigration - that the second generation will be more assimilated than the first:

AMIRA Karroum ... grew up a “sweet and caring” daughter on the Gold Coast beaches, where her dad ran a kebab shop along the Glitter Strip.
To the people who knew her from those days, she would have seemed the unlikeliest terrorist - they would never have thought of her as a religious martyr.
But in the months and weeks leading up to her death last week in a bullet-ridden house in war-torn Syria alongside her husband Yusuf Ali, her Facebook posts reveal a young woman heading for a dangerous future… It is believed as many as 205 Australians have travelled to the battlefield that is Syria since the conflict began in 2011 - part of a contingent of about 11,000 foreign fighters answering what they see as Allah’s call to battle…
Despite her education at one of the country’s top Anglican schools, St Hilda’s in Brisbane, Karroum was always a Muslim - but it was not until a couple of years ago that she started to wear a burqa. On her Facebook page, she described her work as a “Slave of Allah” and her posts became increasingly extreme, condemning America, the war on terror and even democracy.
“Today I witnessed hijabi girls promoting democracy with their T-shirts and their stupid voting papers. Kuffars! May Allah guide these strangers!’’ she posted on federal election day last September.
After wild Muslim riots in Sydney’s Hyde Park in 2012 she called for more violence, urging Facebook followers to: “F… the police! Smash the cop cars.”
On the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, she posted: “Worst effing night. I’m proud of being a Muslim!!!!! 10 years of war in Afghanistan for two towers.”
Islam, particularly as it is often preached today, makes mass immigration a riskier proposition for countries such as ours. How can our border watchers screen out radicals not yet born to those trying to get in? 
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Larry Pickering
THE MISSING PIECE IN THE GILLARD PUZZLE

Some interesting information came to light this week, (from, um, let’s just say an impeccable source deep within the Labor Party, and I would give my right testicle to be able to tell you who). 

I always wondered why the disastrous Julia Gillard was feted as ‘PM extraordinaire’ at the ALP National Conference by Big Bill Ludwig whose union she helped steal hundreds of thousands of dollars from.

To quickly recap: In August of 1996 Gillard was discovered assisting to steal funds from her employer, Slater & Gordon’s, blue chip client, the AWU.

Peter Gordon pulled Gillard in and asked her to explain on tape but apparently the explanation was lacking and Peter Gordon claims to have sacked her on the spot.

S & G Partner, Bernard Murphy, who was also involved in the scam, was asked to leave at the same time. (Later as PM, Gillard promoted him to the Bench of the Federal Court.)

Bill Ludwig was livid and called in the cops to find the funds and lay charges. He also commenced Federal Court proceedings to recover $114,000 that Gillard’s lover, Bruce Wilson, had paid himself and others in redundancy payments once he had realised the game was up.

The Court duly ruled in favour of Ludwig’s application.

This is where it gets interesting. Strangely, and despite the Court ruling, Ludwig made no attempt to recover the $114,000 from Wilson and others.

Stranger still, although the AWU had sacked S & G and moved their account to the other bent Labor law firm Maurice Blackburn, who at the time employed lovers Roxon and Shorten, no attempt was made to recover the defrauded funds or to indict S & G, Gillard, Murphy or Wilson.

In fact Police were so frustrated by the lack of cooperation from the supposed “victims”, they closed the file.

Why? Why did the many “victims” of Gillard and Wilson (all except the AWU’s Bob Kernohan) suddenly want the matter shut down?

Bill Shorten certainly wanted it shut down and even called in the heavies to bash Bob after he refused to accept the safe Melbourne seat of Melton as a pay-off.

“You know, a lot of money changed hands around that time”, said my informant. “No, no I didn’t know that”, I said, sitting bolt upright. “Can you tell me about that?”

“Well, Ludwig was given $60,000 in cash and others were given lesser amounts.”

“By whom?”, I asked.

“Who do you think? Wilson of course!”

“Who were the others?” I asked. “I can’t say who, but let's just say a lot of money changed hands”, he said.

I lit a rollie,“Let me get this straight, so AWU heavies, whose members were defrauded of hundreds of thousands, were silenced using those same defrauded funds? Do Vicpol know about this?”

“You bet they do.”

So now it makes sense... the missing piece of the puzzle! Shorten, Ludwig and others had, apparently inexplicably, shut down the police investigation because they had willingly become beneficiaries of the defrauded funds. (Although I have no direct evidence that Shorten himself was a recipient.)

Of course Shorten has always been the “go to” man for corruption cover-ups.

He went close to “burying” the $20 million Michael Williamson defrauded from HSU East branch members.

Shorten savagely targeted and victimised whistleblower Kathy Jackson and sequestrated the Union to get his grubby hands on the books.

Fortunately that didn’t work and Williamson, via a plea bargain (he accepted a charge of stealing a mere $1 million) is now facing a long jail sentence.

The Bligh Government, before it was thrown out, handed unaccounted-for millions to Ludwig’s Queensland Racing.

In 1999, Beattie’s Government privatised the TAB and sold it for the bargain basement price of $262 Million.

Who they sold it to (the shareholders) reads like a who’s who of Labor crooks, including Queensland Racing’s Bob Bentley, who he himself admits is “likely” to spend some time with Her Majesty.

Unitab now clears in excess of $100 million per year.

Ludwig’s grifted dollars are converted to numbers and those numbers are converted to power.

Power enabled the unholy alliance of Richo’s and Bob Carr’s NSW Right, Victoria’s Socialist Left and Ludwig’s QLD AWU to present us with a delightful three years of Julia Gillard.

The list of who Julia duly repaid is a long one.

Mafioso bosses ruled from their cells as indeed Labor luminaries intend to.

... and the disgustingly credentialled Bill Shorten has their next tick of approval.

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Coble family lost their three children- two girls and a boy in a car accident. After a year, the mother gave birth to a triplet- two girls and a boy..!
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Mayhem

When you go looking for trouble, sometimes it comes your way...
 — in Jet, OK, United States.
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Peer review? Pal Review? Nepotism? When is it OK?
http://theclimatescepticsparty.blogspot.com.au/2014/01/peer-reviewed-magazine-axed-after.html
theclimatescepticsparty.blogspot.com
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Disney’s Blockbuster ‘Frozen’ Scores Points for Feminism—With Jewish Spirit
Male reviewers who’ve been lukewarm about the Golden Globe-winning children’s movie have failed to understand its true spirit
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I resent left wing commentators writing of schisms between conservatives and the "radical right" .. agree or disagree with what Sharon chose, he did not embrace the left. I am confident he did not set out to give away Jerusalem. - ed
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www.jpost.com
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myrightword.blogspot.com
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Do those who depend on 'mainstream media,' know these ugly facts? Doubtful. Very doubtful, and that is pathetic. Imagine US schools in Texas or Arizona, and closings due to rocket attacks from Mexican terrorists. How would America respond? Would America do so by conceding to the Mexican government, for example, by releasing captured terrorists from their prisons? 

Ashdod to close unfortified schools following rockets - Jpost 

"Southern coastal city decides to call off studies for some 3,500 students following recent rocket fire from Gaza on nearby areas."

Continue to the link for this story and others…...….http://paper.li/allysonchristy/1338794440
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After spending the last couple of weeks in Israel visiting my father, I got the urge to write this article. I'd really appreciate if you read it, it's not too long and I feel you will really enjoy reading it. Feel free to share it!

https://www.facebook.com/notes/tomer-kornfeld/the-truth-about-israel/123498971053713
you don't tweet much .. but the article you have written is accurate and wise. I don''t feel the US will ever elect a woman PM. But I hope they will elect Sarah Palin President .. ed
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Did you ever hear Washington rebuke Arab Palestinian Leadership when they bad mouth Washington ? … Neither Have I
www.jpost.com
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blogs.timesofisrael.com
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Academic institutions are considering boycotting Israel. Strange how they single it out despite there being over 100 countries with worse records on freedom of expression. For example, Turkey has jailed the most journalists 2 years in a row; killed one; and has banned kissing in public. (Of course there is its illegal occupation of Cyprus no one mentions either).https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dSuuuwPUjWI
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The Enduring Relevance of C. S. Lewis

17 January 2014

C. S. Lewis (1898–1963), who lectured in English literature at Oxford for most of his life, was a prolific writer in many areas and a man who powerfully and eloquently defended Christianity. Half a century after his death many of his books remain bestsellers: one, Mere Christianity, sells a quarter of a million copies a year.
 
Why have Lewis’s books endured? There are several reasons. For a start, he was a brilliant writer who used English to maximum effect. He was also an enormously intelligent and creative man capable of analysing problems from different angles, courageous enough to tackle difficult topics (for example, two of his books are calledMiracles and The Problem of Pain) and creative enough to branch out into children’s fantasy (the Narnia Chronicles). Yet although these are all important in explaining the lasting popularity of C. S. Lewis, I think there are other factors and they are all to do with how he saw the world.
 
First, Lewis was always intensely aware of the past. There is a tendency in our culture to dismiss dead authors as ‘irrelevant’. Such views were alien to Lewis, a remarkably well-read man, even by the standards of his contemporaries at Oxford and Cambridge. So when he grappled with an issue such as miracles he was able to bring to bear not just his own thinking but the accumulated wisdom of the past. He saw his own Christian faith not as some recent invention but as merely the latest addition to a nearly two-thousand-year-old tradition. His grasp of the ‘big picture’ of Christian history and philosophy meant that he was able to keep contemporary issues in perspective. So although The Screwtape Letters, his brilliantly imagined fantasy of the correspondence from a senior to a junior devil, was written in the darkest days of the Second World War, Hitler and the Nazis are barely mentioned. It was a wise move; Hitler has gone but the devil remains. The same awareness of history encouraged Lewis to step back from many of the debates within the Christianity of his day. He called his great defence of belief Mere Christianity precisely because he believed many of the church divisions and controversies of his time were irrelevant in the long term. Here too he was right. His priorities as a Christian writer are summarised in a haunting quote of his: ‘All that is not eternal is eternally out of date.’
 
Second, Lewis was always aware of the real world. Given that for most of his life, he was an unmarried man working in relative seclusion at the very highest level of education you might well assume that his writings were ‘academic’ in the worst sense of the word, being irrelevant and incomprehensible to all but a few. The reality is the exact opposite. Lewis was a gifted communicator and went out of his way to include, rather than exclude, people in his writings, something he managed without being condescending. He gave talks on Christianity to ordinary soldiers in the Second World War, wrote books for children and painstakingly replied to every letter he received with thought and concern. (Someone has estimated that he personally answered over twelve thousand letters during his lifetime.) People in Lewis’s profession are often alleged to live in an ‘ivory tower’, a place excluded from the trials and tribulations of day-to-day life. You will find no sense of that in Lewis’s writings. His books, full of realism and overflowing with a sense of life’s joys, hurts and griefs, contain profound insights into the peculiarities of human nature.
 
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Lewis was aware of the spiritual world. From the moment of his somewhat surprising conversion to Christianity in 1930 he was careful to think and write about everything that he did in the light of his faith. Quietly, sensibly, in a very matter-of-fact way, he wrote about God, Christ, angels, heaven and hell. While some religious writers display an awkwardness when they switch between ‘ordinary life’ and ‘spiritual matters’ there is no trace of any such gulf in Lewis’s writings; both worlds were real to him.
 
Lewis was a great writer. In all that he stood for he is an antidote to our age, with its haste, shallowness and materialism. Reading Lewis encourages believers and challenges sceptics. If you have not read him, read him. And if you have read Lewis in the past, reread him. It will do you good. 

Agapé,  

Revd. Canon J.John
www.philotrust.com

To further the work of Philo Trust, please consider making a donation by clicking here.
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Michelle Malkin 12
Michelle with the Twitchy Team
Hi everyone! Here's the MichelleMalkin.com newsletter for January 17th. Enjoy!

From the Blog

Congressional report on Benghazi notes remaining Libyan sources probably finding it impossible to buy life insurance

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Dueling Headlines; ‘Debbie Wasserman Schultz says all Dems will run on Obamacare in 2014′ edition

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Michelle Obama looks forward to her post White House years so she can finally get a chance to travel

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Get a clue. Obamacare writes its own disastrous stories.
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Legionella sp. under UV illumination
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Events[edit]

Births[edit]

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Holidays and observances[edit]

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“Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain.” - Philippians 2:14-16
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Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon
January 17: Morning
"And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion." -Revelation 14:1
The apostle John was privileged to look within the gates of heaven, and in describing what he saw, he begins by saying, "I looked, and, lo, a Lamb!" This teaches us that the chief object of contemplation in the heavenly state is "the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sins of the world." Nothing else attracted the apostle's attention so much as the person of that Divine Being, who hath redeemed us by his blood. He is the theme of the songs of all glorified spirits and holy angels. Christian, here is joy for thee; thou hast looked, and thou hast seen the Lamb. Through thy tears thine eyes have seen the Lamb of God taking away thy sins. Rejoice, then. In a little while, when thine eyes shall have been wiped from tears, thou wilt see the same Lamb exalted on his throne. It is the joy of thy heart to hold daily fellowship with Jesus; thou shalt have the same joy to a higher degree in heaven; thou shalt enjoy the constant vision of his presence; thou shalt dwell with him forever. "I looked, and, lo, a Lamb!" Why, that Lamb is heaven itself; for as good Rutherford says, "Heaven and Christ are the same thing;" to be with Christ is to be in heaven, and to be in heaven is to be with Christ. That prisoner of the Lord very sweetly writes in one of his glowing letters--"O my Lord Jesus Christ, if I could be in heaven without thee, it would be a hell; and if I could be in hell, and have thee still, it would be a heaven to me, for thou art all the heaven I want." It is true, is it not, Christian? Does not thy soul say so?

"Not all the harps above
Can make a heavenly place,
If God his residence remove,
Or but conceal his face."

All thou needest to make thee blessed, supremely blessed, is "to be with Christ."
Evening
"And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king's house." - 2 Samuel 11:2
At that hour David saw Bathsheba. We are never out of the reach of temptation. Both at home and abroad we are liable to meet with allurements to evil; the morning opens with peril, and the shades of evening find us still in jeopardy. They are well kept whom God keeps, but woe unto those who go forth into the world, or even dare to walk their own house unarmed. Those who think themselves secure are more exposed to danger than any others. The armour-bearer of Sin is Self-confidence.

David should have been engaged in fighting the Lord's battles, instead of which he tarried at Jerusalem, and gave himself up to luxurious repose, for he arose from his bed at eventide. Idleness and luxury are the devil's jackals, and find him abundant prey. In stagnant waters noxious creatures swarm, and neglected soil soon yields a dense tangle of weeds and briars. Oh for the constraining love of Jesus to keep us active and useful! When I see the King of Israel sluggishly leaving his couch at the close of the day, and falling at once into temptation, let me take warning, and set holy watchfulness to guard the door.

Is it possible that the king had mounted his housetop for retirement and devotion? If so, what a caution is given us to count no place, however secret, a sanctuary from sin! While our hearts are so like a tinder-box, and sparks so plentiful, we had need use all diligence in all places to prevent a blaze. Satan can climb housetops, and enter closets, and even if we could shut out that foul fiend, our own corruptions are enough to work our ruin unless grace prevent. Reader, beware of evening temptations. Be not secure. The sun is down but sin is up. We need a watchman for the night as well as a guardian for the day. O blessed Spirit, keep us from all evil this night. Amen.
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Isaac 
[Ī'zaac] he laugheth or laughing one.
The son of Abraham and Sarah, who was born at Gerar when Abraham was one hundred years of age and Sarah was about ninety years old (Gen. 17:19, 21; 21:3-12; 22:2-9).
The Man Whose Birth Caused a Laugh
Isaac is one of the few cases in the Bible in which God selected a name for a child and announced it before he was born. In the Old Testament we have Isaac, Ishmael, Solomon, Josiah, Cyrus and Isaiah's son; in the New Testament, John the Baptist and Jesus.
Isaac's beautiful and suggestive name, "he laughed," commemorates the two laughings at the promise of God - the laughing of the father's joy and the laughing of Sarah's incredulity which soon passed into penitence and faith (Gen. 21:6). Isaac was the child of the covenant, "I will establish My covenant with him." To three patriarchs in succession was this covenant specifically given: to Abraham, as he left Chaldea (Gen. 12:3); to Isaac, when in Canaan during the famine (Gen. 26:4 ); to Jacob, at Bethel (Gen. 28:14). Isaac, however, was the first to inherit the covenant, and to him God gave the whole inheritance of Abraham (Gen. 24:35).
We have no record of Isaac's early life apart from the fact that he was circumcised when eight days of age (Gen. 21:4). Doubtless as a lad he became God's child in heart and life, ever mindful of the covenant he was heir to. When, according to Josephus, Isaac was twenty-five years of age, he was taken from Beer-sheba to the land of Moriah, where, as the burnt offering, Abraham presented him to God. While we have Abraham's unquestioning faith in his submission to the divine command to offer up his only son, we must not forget Isaac's supreme confidence in his father and also his willing consent to become the victim ( Gen. 22:12; 26:5Heb. 11:17). Thus in Isaac we have a type of Him who gave Himself for our sins. From the day of his surrender to death, Isaac became a dedicated man. "The altar sanctified the gift."
When his mother Sarah died, Isaac was a man of thirty-six, and was deeply grieved over the death of his mother. Comfort was his when he took Rebekah as his wife to help fill the vacant place in his heart. To the credit of Isaac it must be said that he was the only one of the patriarchs who had but one wife. It is also perfectly clear from the ancient idyll, one of the most beautiful in all literature, that Isaac left the choice of his wife to God. When the caravan bearing Rebekah neared home, Isaac was in the fields meditating or "praying," as the margin expresses it (Gen. 24:63).
For many years Isaac and Rebekah were childless, but God heard Isaac's prayers and Rebekah gave birth to twins, Jacob and Esau. Isaac seems to have outlived his wife, and died at the age of 180 (Gen. 35:28). For some fifty years Isaac was almost blind, a sad and pitiful lot for God's chosen one.
The character of Isaac, beautiful though it was in many ways, yet carried a few blots. He followed his father, Abraham, in deceitfulness when he called his wife his sister, bringing upon himself the rebuke of Abimelech. He also loved "savoury food," which should have been alien to a man so calm and still, lord of his passion and himself. Then in the matter of Esau and the blessing, Isaac surely rebelled against the Lord's purpose.
Among the commendable features of his character, mention can be made of Isaac's submission (Gen. 22:6, 9); meditation (Gen. 24:63); instinctive trust in God (Gen. 22:7, 8); deep devotion (Gen. 24:67; 25:21); peaceableness (Gen. 26:20-22); prayerfulness (Gen. 26:25); faith ( Heb. 11:16, 17). "The fear of Isaac" (Gen. 31:42, 53), means the God tremblingly adored by the patriarch.
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LOT'S WIFE
Scripture Reference: Genesis 19:15-26Luke 17:29-33
When Abraham heard that his nephew, Lot, had been taken captive by the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah, he pursued the enemies and freed Lot, and "the women, and the people." Who the women were, Scripture does not say. They may have been Lot's wife and daughters, or Sodomite female servants. The first direct reference we have of Lot's unnamed wife is when the angels came to hasten the family out of doomed Sodom (Genesis 19:15 ). Who she was, of what race and family, of what life and character, by what name she was known, the Bible is silent. All the information we have about her is packed into one short verse, "His wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt." Yet we must give attention to her for it is written in burning words by the finger of God -
"Remember Lot's wife."
Some dozen words in the Old Testament, and three words in the New Testament, then, are all we have of this female character.
When, because of strife, Abraham and his nephew, Lot, came to part, Abraham gave Lot the pick of the land before them. Lot selfishly chose the best stretch of the country, "well watered everywhere ... even as the garden of the Lord" (Genesis 13:10). But such a greedy choice had dire consequences. Lot pitched his tent toward Sodom, and before long was in Sodom where its inhabitants "were wicked and sinners before the Lord exceedingly" (Genesis 13:13 ). Lot became a citizen of Sodom, sat at its gate as the city's mayor, and was treated with honor and reverence as a relative of the mighty Abraham who had delivered Sodom from the Elamite invasion. While Peter speaks of Lot as being just and of having a righteous soul vexed with the filthy lives of the Sodomites (2 Peter 2:7-9), he yet somehow closed his eyes to the wickedness of the people, married a woman of Sodom and consented for his two daughters born in Sodom to marry Sodomites.
Sodom was such a cesspool of iniquity that God said He would destroy it. But because of Lot's presence in the city Abraham interceded for its preservation. If only there had been ten righteous people in it God said the city would be spared. The only apparent righteous person in it - whose righteousness had been made ineffective through compromise - was Lot. So the two angels came to deliver Lot and his family from the terrible judgment about to fall on Sodom. They were entertained overnight, and Lot's wife doubtless shared in the hospitality shown. Early the next morning the angels sought to hasten Lot and his family out of the city, but they lingered. They were loathe to leave the luxury, pleasure, and sin of Sodom, so the angelic deliverers had to remove them forcibly from the city and compel them to escape for their life.
The account of the tragedy is briefly related. As fire and brimstone out of heaven fell upon Sodom, Lot's wife looked back from behind her husband. In oriental countries it was the rule for the wife to walk some distance behind her husband, but as Lot's wife lingered and looked back she was overtaken by sulphurous vapors, and, encrusted with salt, perished where she stood. Entombed as a pillar, she became "as a monument of an unbelieving soul" in a desolate region, "of whose wickedness even to this day the waste land that smoketh is a testimony" (Wisdom 10:7 ). The wife of Lot looked back upon her own city with regrets at having to part with its sinful pleasures. She had been compelled to leave Sodom as a city, but all that Sodom represented was very much in her heart.
All the while Lot's wife was in Sodom, its "filthy communications" soaked into her soul, so much so that when the angel of mercy sought to save her from the angel of judgment, she could not be saved. In the look back to Sodom was regret for all she was leaving for an unknown life before her, and as she sighed the salt air whitened her body into marble, and "nature made for her at once a grave and a monument." "She became a pillar of salt," and in that word we have a symbol of character as well as a monument of destiny. A pillar of salt is the picture of many a society woman today. All the sweet blood of a true woman's heart has become brackish by the life she leads. Instead of a woman, you have only a pillar of salt. In Sodom, Lot's wife lived in pleasure but was dead as she lived. As the wife of a righteous man, she had a name to live, but the gay life of Sodom asphyxiated her soul. Thus when the warning voice of God sounded in her ear, she may have heard it but did not heed it. Sodom with its society and sin had been her whole life.
When dealing with the truth of His Second Advent, our Lord used the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah and Lot's deliverance from their destruction as an illustration of His emancipation of His own from the catastrophe to overtake a godless world, and warns believers to remember Lot's wife and not linger, look, and be lost. As those who wait His coming we are not to look back nor draw back, but look up for our redemption draweth nigh. How arrestive is Christ's exhortation! "Remember Lot's wife." Mary's one act of piety in breaking her alabaster box of precious spikenard brought her a perpetual memorial, and in like manner the one tragic act of Lot's wife brought her a different kind of remembrance. For all who preach the Gospel what an appeal for immediate decision there is in the urgent summons of the angels to Lot and his family, "Escape for thy life, look not behind thee ... lest thou be consumed." That stirring evangelistic hymn has led many a sinner to escape to the arms of the Saviour -
The Gospel bells give warning,
As they sound from day to day,
Of the fate which doth await them
Who forever will delay -
Escape thou for thy life;
Tarry not in all the plain.
Nor behind thee look, oh, never,
Lest thou be consumed in pain.
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Today's reading: Genesis 41-42, Matthew 12:1-23 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Genesis 41-42

Pharaoh's Dreams
When two full years had passed, Pharaoh had a dream: He was standing by the Nile, 2 when out of the river there came up seven cows, sleek and fat, and they grazed among the reeds. 3After them, seven other cows, ugly and gaunt, came up out of the Nile and stood beside those on the riverbank. 4 And the cows that were ugly and gaunt ate up the seven sleek, fat cows. Then Pharaoh woke up.
5 He fell asleep again and had a second dream: Seven heads of grain, healthy and good, were growing on a single stalk. 6After them, seven other heads of grain sprouted--thin and scorched by the east wind. 7 The thin heads of grain swallowed up the seven healthy, full heads. Then Pharaoh woke up; it had been a dream....

Today's New Testament reading: Matthew 12:1-23

Jesus Is Lord of the Sabbath
1 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them. 2 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, "Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath."
3 He answered, "Haven't you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? 4 He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread--which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests. 5Or haven't you read in the Law that the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple desecrate the Sabbath and yet are innocent? 6 I tell you that something greater than the temple is here. 7 If you had known what these words mean, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the innocent. 8 For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath...."


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