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Articles Posted by darrellmaurina

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  • GOP strategist Greg McNeilly sees West Michigan's attitude on gay marriage shifting

    02/07/2015 1:54:18 PM PST · by darrellmaurina · 23 replies
    Grand Rapids Press ^ | 2/7/2015 | Shandra Martinez
    GRAND RAPIDS, MI -- Greg McNeilly occupies the chasm dividing gay rights activists and conservative Republicans. The GOP strategist unabashedly claims membership in the two groups that have been on opposite sides of the battle over legalizing gay marriage. McNeilly's marriage to Lansing attorney Doug Meeks is one of 300 that will now be recognized by the state following a federal court injunction, and Gov. Rick Snyder's decision not to appeal the decision. Savoring the legal victory is difficult for McNeilly when thousands of same sex couples can not be married or have their marriages recognized in this state. The...
  • Suspended between life and death

    09/29/2014 2:29:15 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 17 replies
    BBC ^ | 9/13/2014 | Claudia Hammond
    When Ariel Sharon died in January this year, eight years after a stroke, he'd survived for longer than would probably be expected had he lived elsewhere in the world. Since 2005 it's been illegal in Israel to turn off ventilators when a person is dying or has no hope of recovery. The result is that large numbers of patients spend years on life support, many of them unconscious... In most countries a ward like this would not exist, and doctors and families in discussion together, might have made the decision to turn off Schmail's ventilator to allow him to die....
  • (RNC Committeeman) Dave Agema shows support for 'Duck Dynasty' star, calls out 'LGBT Gestapo'

    12/21/2013 2:41:58 PM PST · by darrellmaurina · 35 replies
    Grand Rapids Press ^ | 12/20/2013 | Matt Vande Bunte
    GRANDVILLE, MI -- Republican National Committeeman Dave Agema supports the “Duck Dynasty” family whose hit television show may be over now that one of the stars has been suspended for comments the A&E cable network deemed offensive to gays. In a Friday, Dec. 20, Facebook post visible to his social media friends, which include an MLive Media Group employee, Agema lauded this statement released by Phil Robertson’s family. “Good for them,” Agema wrote. “The LGBT Gestapo speech police will not succeed when families like them are Biblically solid. You are in our prayers. May A&E fall into the pit they...
  • Putting Military Pay on the Table

    12/02/2013 2:01:31 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 37 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 11/30/2013 | Editorial Board
    Big-ticket weapons like aircraft carriers and the F-35 fighter jet have to be part of any conversation about cutting Pentagon spending to satisfy the mandatory budget reductions known as the sequester. But compensation for military personnel has to be on the table, too — even though no other defense issue is more politically volatile or emotionally fraught. After a decade of war, the very idea of cutting benefits to soldiers, sailors and Marines who put their lives on the line seems ungrateful. But America’s involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan is over or winding down, and the Pentagon is obliged to...
  • Zalis: ‘Students aren’t suspended for ... biblical verses’ (Shirt said “Being gay ain’t right.”)

    11/05/2013 2:26:04 PM PST · by darrellmaurina · 32 replies
    Rolla Daily News ^ | 11/4/2013 | Paul Hackbarth
    The suspension of a Rolla High School student who wore a shirt that displayed biblical verses and words opposing homosexuality raised debate on social media websites over the weekend after a St. Louis television station reported on the incident Friday. However, Rolla public schools’s superintendent has responded to the TV station’s report, clarifying that students are disciplined for wearing clothes that are disruptive, not because they have religious quotes written on them. Dr. Aaron Zalis, superintendent of the Rolla Public Schools system, spoke with the Rolla Daily News by phone Monday morning about the school’s dress code policy and to...
  • Canadian-born Orthodox Jew Nick Muzin helps boost black GOP Sen. Tim Scott to prominence

    09/24/2013 4:07:31 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 5 replies
    JTA ^ | 2/12/2013 | Ron Kampeas
    WASHINGTON (JTA) – On a Saturday night following Shabbat, Nick Muzin arrayed on his dining room table what would turn out to be the winning strategy to elect the first black Republican to Congress from South Carolina in more than a century. The next night at the same table in his Charleston, S.C., home, Muzin hosted his weekly Talmud class. Associates say the duality typifies Muzin, the 37-year-old Orthodox Jewish dynamo now leading the effort by House Republicans to expand the party’s appeal following Mitt Romney’s loss to President Obama last November. The ascension of Tim Scott from the South...
  • Can Evangelical Chaplains Serve God and Country?—The Crisis Arrives

    09/17/2013 11:44:24 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 48 replies
    Southern Baptist Seminary ^ | 9/17/2013 | Dr. Al Mohler
    Can chaplains committed to historic biblical Christianity serve in the United States military? That question, though inconceivable to our nation’s founders, is now front and center. And the answer to that question will answer another, even more important question: Can religious liberty survive under America’s new moral order? The repeal of the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, coupled with the Supreme Court’s ruling that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional, set the stage for this crisis. The full normalization of same-sex relationships within the U.S. military is part of the unprecedented moral revolution that is now reshaping American...
  • "White power" group plans takeover of town with the last church where OPC founder Machen preached

    08/31/2013 7:51:32 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 40 replies
    (Vanity) | 8/31/2013 | Darrell Todd Maurina
    The town where J. Gresham Machen, the founder of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, last preached before his death has shown up again in the news, this time in a horrible way. While Machen's direct denominational influence was fairly narrow, as the key leader of the secession from the Northern Presbyterians and founder of Westminster Theological Seminary, Machen has a lasting role in American Calvinism that is far larger than the Orthodox Presbyterian Church which he founded. In his own lifetime, however, Machen's role was even more important and went well beyond Reformed circles. As a professor at Princeton Theological Seminary,...
  • Gay Marriage Stirs Rebellion at Synagogue

    07/06/2013 1:38:33 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 68 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 7/5/2013 | Adam Nagourney
    LOS ANGELES — Sinai Temple is a Conservative Jewish congregation perched on a hill in Westwood, famous for its wealth, its sizable population of Persians, many of whom fled Iran after the fall of the shah, and a well-known and outspoken rabbi who has at times pushed his congregation on ideologically adventurous paths. So it was that three weeks before the Supreme Court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California, the rabbi, David Wolpe, announced in a letter to the synagogue that gay marriages would be performed in this 107-year-old congregation, as soon as the court ruling he anticipated...
  • Strategist Out of Closet and Into Fray, This Time for Gay Marriage (ex-RNC chair Mehlman comes out)

    06/21/2013 4:04:36 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 23 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 6/19/2013 | Sheryl Gay Stolberg
    As the Supreme Court considers overturning California’s ban on same-sex marriage, gay people await a ruling that could change their lives. But the case has already transformed one gay man: Ken Mehlman, the once-closeted Republican operative who orchestrated President George W. Bush’s 2004 re-election on a platform that included opposition to same-sex marriage. Now Mr. Mehlman, a private equity executive in Manhattan, is waging what could be his final campaign: to convince fellow Republicans that gay marriage is consistent with conservative values and good for their party. His about-face, sparked in part by the lawyer who filed the California lawsuit,...
  • Birmingham area parents and pastors speak out on Boy Scouts (Largest PCA church against gay scouts)

    05/24/2013 10:33:13 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 50 replies ^ | 5/24/2013 | Kent Faulk
    ...Churches have been perhaps the biggest supporters of scouting groups. But today a few pastors in the Birmingham area predicted that the new policy will cause some churches to drop their sponsorship of scouting programs. The Rev. Harry Reeder, senior pastor of the 4,100-member Briarwood Presbyterian Church and outspoken critic of efforts to change Boy Scout policy on homosexuality, said evangelical churches are a bedrock of support for the Boy Scout tradition in Alabama. But that's now in danger, he said. "When a church holds to a biblical social ethic of sex only between a man and a woman in...
  • The Yemeni Way (NYT: "Yemen is a National Rifle Association paradise")

    05/12/2013 11:39:01 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 5 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 5/11/2013 | Thomas L. Friedman
    SANA, Yemen -- IF you want to know how bad things can go in Syria, study Iraq. If you want to know how much better things could have gone, study Yemen. Say what? Yemen? Yes, Yemen. Maybe the most unique postrevolutionary political process happening in any country experiencing an Arab awakening is in poor, fractured, water-starved Yemen. In its own messy way, Yemen is doing what all the other Arab awakening countries failed to do: have a serious, broad-based national dialogue, where the different political factions, new parties, young people, women, Islamists, tribes, northerners and southerners are literally introducing themselves...
  • Bloomington Planned Parenthood attacked with ax; Man tells cops he did it due to religious beliefs

    04/13/2013 10:11:25 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 58 replies
    This is an Associated Press story so due to copyright it must be excerpted. Key items: ___ BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) -- Southern Indiana police arrested a man on suspicion of using an ax to smash windows and damage computers at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Bloomington on Thursday. Benjamin D. Curell, 27, of Ellettsville, was arrested on preliminary burglary and criminal mischief charges, The Herald-Times reported... The man allegedly attributed his actions to his religious beliefs, saying Planned Parenthood employees murder babies... Anti-abortion group Indiana Right to Life issued a statement condemning the actions of the vandal. "Indiana Right to...
  • Park 'Positioning Herself as Korea's Iron Lady'

    03/30/2013 8:43:14 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 28 replies
    Chosun Ilbo ^ | 3/29/2013
    President Park Geun-hye models herself on former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher as the "iron lady" of South Korea, the Wall Street Journal speculated Wednesday. "Ms. Park, like Mrs. Thatcher, is known for not being intimidated by totalitarian regimes or men in power," the paper said. "When her father, President Park Chung-hee, was assassinated in 1979, Ms. Park was quoted as saying 'Is the border secure?' -- sparking admiration by worrying primarily about the possible threat of a North Korean invasion." "In her first televised address from [Cheong Wa Dae] she sharply chastised opposition politicians -- almost all men --for...
  • A photo response to those who say God loves everyone and has a wonderful plan for their lives...

    03/18/2013 12:23:39 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 85 replies
    The Bible ^ | Paul the Apostle
    Romans 9:15-24 15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy. 17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth. 18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom...
  • GOP Issues Scathing Self-Analysis

    03/18/2013 11:56:55 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 34 replies
    The Wall Street Journal ^ | 3/18/2013 | Neil King, Jr.
    The national Republican Party released a scathing self-analysis Monday that party leaders hope will be the first step toward returning the GOP to a winning track after its election losses of November. The report, issued by a Republican National Committee task force, minces no words. "Public perception of the party is at record lows," the report says. "Young voters are increasingly rolling their eyes at what the party represents, and many minorities wrongly think that Republicans do not like them or want them in the country. When someone rolls their eyes at us, they are not likely to open their...
  • China has its eyes on Afghanistan’s minerals

    01/29/2013 6:51:46 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 15 replies
    Wadsam Afghan Business News Portal ^ | 1/27/2013 | Wadia Samadi
    In the approaching twilight of the US war in Afghanistan, China is stepping up its involvement, attracted by the country’s trillion dollar worth of minerals. China, who has long been a bystander to the conflict in Afghanistan, could prove to be the ultimate winner in Afghanistan and that without a single shed of blood. They have already hit the jackpot by winning the billion dollar investment project in Logar’s copper mine. Afghanistan’s lithium, the key raw material for batteries to nuclear components, is the next potential target. But, do they seem to be going forward? Security remains a challenge to...
  • Openly Gay, and Openly Welcomed in Congress

    01/26/2013 10:49:04 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 31 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 1/26/2013 | Jeremy W. Peters
    WASHINGTON — When Mark Takano ran unsuccessfully for Congress twice in the early 1990s, his opponents tried to smear him as a “homosexual liberal” and a “nutzoid.” One of them even had pink fliers printed that asked, “A Congressman for Riverside ... Or San Francisco?” When he ran again last year, he won by almost 20 points. “Flash forward 18 years,” Mr. Takano said recently, “and the very macho building tradesmen are behind me. I’m getting pictures with them in their hard hats.” For decades, the words “gay” and “Congress” were usually seen together only in stories of scandal and...
  • A Downsized Boston Globe Opens Its Space for Community Uses (Space vacated by laid-off workers)

    01/22/2013 11:17:05 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 25 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 1/20/2013 | Christine Haughney
    BOSTON — Among the many changes that Christopher M. Mayer wanted to make when he became publisher of The Boston Globe in 2010 was to transform a particularly unattractive section of the newsroom. Mr. Mayer wanted to fill in what he called “the center of the doughnut” on the second floor — acres of abandoned desks once occupied by more than 100 workers in the payroll, classified and advertising departments. Those jobs have largely disappeared in recent years from The Globe, which is owned by The New York Times Company, and Mr. Mayer faces a situation familiar to many publishers...
  • I Went After Guns. Obama Can, Too (Australian former prime minister confiscated 700,000 guns)

    01/18/2013 6:46:02 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 122 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 1/16/2013 | John Howard
    SYDNEY, Australia -- It is for Americans and their elected representatives to determine the right response to President Obama’s proposals on gun control. I wouldn’t presume to lecture Americans on the subject. I can, however, describe what I, as prime minister of Australia, did to curb gun violence following a horrific massacre 17 years ago in the hope that it will contribute constructively to the debate in the United States. I was elected prime minister in early 1996, leading a center-right coalition. Virtually every nonurban electoral district in the country — where gun ownership was higher than elsewhere — sent...
  • Hawks on Iraq Prepare for War Again, Against Hagel

    01/14/2013 1:32:15 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 23 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 1/12/2013 | Jim Rutenberg
    In the bitter debate that led up to the American invasion of Iraq in 2003, Senator Chuck Hagel of Nebraska said that some of his fellow Republicans, in their zest for war, lacked the perspective of veterans like him, who have “sat in jungles or foxholes and watched their friends get their heads blown off.” Those Republicans in turn called him an “appeaser” whose cautious geopolitical approach dangerously telegraphed weakness in the post-Sept. 11 world. The campaign now being waged against Mr. Hagel’s nomination as secretary of defense is in some ways a relitigation of that decade-old dispute. It is...
  • The G.O.P.’s Existential Crisis (NYT version why we're not actually in debt, and the GOP is dying)

    12/14/2012 9:38:35 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 13 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 12/13/2012 | Paul Krugman
    We are not having a debt crisis. It’s important to make this point, because I keep seeing articles about the “fiscal cliff” that do, in fact, describe it — often in the headline — as a debt crisis. But it isn’t. The U.S. government is having no trouble borrowing to cover its deficit. In fact, its borrowing costs are near historic lows. And even the confrontation over the debt ceiling that looms a few months from now if we do somehow manage to avoid going over the fiscal cliff isn’t really about debt. No, what we’re having is a political...
  • Bond-style weapons carried by North Korean assassin unveiled

    12/06/2012 8:10:40 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 13 replies
    The Telegraph ^ | 11/27/2012 | Julian Ryall
    Footage of three weapons that were found on a North Korean assassin when he was arrested on the platform of a subway in Seoul in September 2011 were shown on CNN on Monday. The weapons, which would not be out of place in a James Bond film, included what at first glance appears to be a black torch with a wrist strap and the word "police" along one side. Upon closer inspection, however, one end has three holes and each contains a bullet, with a trigger mechanism in the body of the torch. Two of the bullets remain in the...
  • Santorum strikes again (NYT attack on Santorum's role in defeating a UN treaty)

    12/06/2012 6:31:05 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 26 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 12/5/2012 | Gail Collins
    Lately, you’ve probably been asking: “What ever happened to Rick Santorum? The guy who ran for president in the sweater vest? The one who compared homosexuality to bestiality and did 50 push-ups every morning?” It’s certainly been on my mind. Santorum is still in there swinging. Lately, he’s been on a crusade against a dangerous attempt by the United Nations to help disabled people around the world. This week, he won! The Senate refused to ratify a U.N. treaty on the subject. The vote, which fell five short of the necessary two-thirds majority, came right after 89-year-old Bob Dole, the...
  • Election 2012 Marks the End of Evangelical Dominance in Politics

    11/16/2012 4:57:28 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 78 replies
    The Atlantic ^ | 11/13/2012 | Jonathan Merritt
    Ever since Ronald Reagan was elected president in 1980, evangelicals have been a powerful political force. Jerry Falwell and his Moral Majority organization were credited in part with Reagan's election, having registered millions of evangelicals to vote. Their influence would only grow over the next 25 years: Evangelicals were instrumental in Reagan's reelection, the Republican Revolution of 1994, and both of George W. Bush's victories. But on November 6, 2012, their reign came to an end. "I think this [election] was an evangelical disaster," Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, told NPR. He's right, but it wasn't for...
  • "Good journalism starts with being humble – about the fact that there is no such thing as truth"

    11/10/2012 8:09:19 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 26 replies
    Your Middle East ^ | 11/9/2012 | Victor Argo
    An article in Foreign Policy magazine a couple of weeks ago caught my eye: Terry Anderson explained why the world still needed war correspondents. Anderson was writing about Austin Tice, the freelance journalist recently kidnapped in Syria, and the dangers of the trade in general when going to a war zone. Terry Anderson? A familiar figure among historians of the Lebanese civil war; a journalist most famous for a long period when he didn't write a single word. Terry Anderson had been the AP's Beirut bureau chief for two years when he was abducted by armed militias in Ain al-Mreisseh,...
  • An ‘Error Message’ on the Screen of Western Civ (RTS Chancellor on the importance of a work ethic)

    10/12/2012 6:08:35 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 11 replies
    Reformed Theological Seminary ^ | 12/31/2011 | Dr. Michael Milton
    An ‘Error Message’ on the Screen of Western Civ? The Most Important Question Facing us in 2012 is more than an Election The most important question of the coming year is not “who will be the next occupant of the White House?” The single most important matter before us all is a question of value. It is a question that may be stated, “Will the Western world embrace the very thing that holds it together. Or will it continue the denial of the obvious and seal its inevitable decline?” Let me explain. In historiography – the study of history –...
  • Request for Calvinists to help "Freep" a "Two Kingdoms" blog opposing Christian pastors in politics

    10/11/2012 11:27:52 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 19 replies
    Presbyterian Blues ^ | 10/11/2012 | Darrell Todd Maurina
    Fellow Calvinists on the Great Reformed Ping List, I need some help. Go to this website, run by a lawyer who is also an Orthodox Presbyterian elder, and you'll see what is being advocated by prominent people in Calvinist circles today who are seriously arguing not only that the church ought to steer clear from political positions but also that Christians ought not to use their Bibles when they enter the civil realm.
  • Rap attack and "Precious Puritans" discussion (Vanity)

    10/06/2012 6:23:09 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 16 replies
    Christian Observer Forums: CO-URC | 10/6/2012 | Darrell Todd Maurina
    Most of us in conservative Reformed circles are not fans of rap. I'm not either, though I have Korean relatives who are -- the "Gangnam Style" video of Korean rappers which has gone viral has shown to lots of Americans how our culture is affecting lots of places we would least expect it. The result is that many of us were probably caught unaware by the explosion on the blogosphere which greeted a Reformed man of African-American ancestry who uses rap as his medium of Christian music. The rapper, who goes by the name of "Propaganda," produced a rap song...
  • Akin campaign alleges threats to staff (GOP threats: "their careers might be ruined")

    08/31/2012 10:03:41 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 89 replies
    St. Louis Beacon ^ | 8/28/2012 | Jo Mannies
    Akin's spokesman Ryan Hite confirmed that some members of Akin's campaign staff, and some volunteers, have received threatening emails, some of which assert their careers might be ruined if they stay with Akin. A source close to Akin provided the Beacon a copy of one such email that allegedly came from a GOP committeeperson in central Missouri. The sender’s name had been blacked out. “Many within the Republican Party have noticed your energetic and passionate work with Todd Akin’s Senate campaign,” the note read. “You are young, well spoken, and likeable. I have spoken with many other state committeemen and...
  • Don't let the UN steal the Internet

    08/29/2012 7:22:08 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 6 replies
    ZD Net ^ | 8/28/2012 | David Gewirtz
    Summary: If the UN seizes control of the Internet, they'll take the Internet from the voices of freedom and give it to nations who'd prefer to either kill it or refashion it into another tool of state control.
  • Over 120 Pastors & Christian Leaders Stand with Todd (Akin)

    08/28/2012 3:47:16 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 159 replies
    Akin for Senate campaign ^ | 8/28/2012 | Todd Aken
    Over 120 Pastors & Christian Leaders Stand with Todd St. Louis, MO: Today the Akin campaign released a list of over 120 pastors and Christian leaders who are publicly standing with Todd Akin. Some had previously signed their name, but many are voicing their support for the first time. These religious figures from every region of the state have decided to place their personal and very public support behind Congressman Todd Akin in his race for the United States Senate seat this year. The endorsement statement released was as follows: We the undersigned do hereby affirm/reaffirm our continued support of...
  • Being a Pastor and Speaking Out in Today’s Culture

    08/23/2012 8:55:31 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 27 replies
    Reformed Theological Seminary ^ | 8/17/2012 | Dr. Michael Milton
    Perhaps this article by Dr. Michael Milton, the chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary, will be of some benefit to Reformed brothers involved in politics: Dr. Milton is much more important than me. If "Two Kingdoms" people want to argue that the views of the chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary are not Reformed, that would make for an interesting debate. I have my own problems with RTS, but this article isn't one of them. Key quote: "... if the matter is important enough for me to address in preaching or writing, I believe I am just being pastoral to God’s...
  • Todd Akin is a PCA member and Covenant Seminary graduate (vanity)

    08/21/2012 2:52:24 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 45 replies
    Puritan Board ^ | 8/21/2012 | Darrell Todd Maurina
    By now probably everybody who cares anything about politics or about right-to-life issues knows about the U.S. Senate candidate from Missouri who made really dumb statements about female biology in rape cases. What may not be widely known is that U.S. Rep. Todd Akin is a member of the Presbyterian Church in America, is a graduate of Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, and apparently was a ruling elder at Twin Oaks PCA in Ballwin, a St. Louis suburb, though he's no longer listed as being a member of that church's session (i.e., board of elders or consistory). Most of...
  • "Should We Oppose Same-Sex Marriage?" (Westminster prof "could affirm domestic partnerships")

    08/15/2012 7:38:20 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 122 replies
    White Horse Inn ^ | 5/11/2012 | Dr. Michael Horton
    I appreciate the responses to my previous posts on this issue and, after reading some of the questions, thought somewhat pressed to write this last one. OK, so we know what Christian marriage is. We preach that, teach it, and expect believers to embrace Scripture’s instructions regarding sexual conduct, although we are still sinners who must continually repent, trust in Christ, and receive his pardon. Got it. But what about the public argument? As I said in the last one, we aren’t authorized to speak in God’s name where he hasn’t spoken, but we are commanded to do so wherever...
  • Woman Becomes First Openly Gay General

    08/13/2012 7:44:06 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 146 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 8/12/2012 | Matthew L. Wald
    WASHINGTON — An Army officer being promoted to brigadier general openly acknowledged her homosexuality on Friday by having her wife pin her star to her uniform, thus becoming the first openly gay officer of flag rank in the United States military. The officer, Brig. Gen. Tammy S. Smith, 49, a 26-year veteran of the Army, was promoted in a ceremony at the women’s memorial at Arlington National Cemetery. The star was affixed by Tracey Hepner, who was a co-founder last year of the Military Partners and Families Coalition, which “provides support, resources, education and advocacy for lesbian, gay, bisexual and...
  • "Old Reformed" views and "Escondido 2K" views of politics (vanity)

    08/09/2012 9:54:59 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 20 replies
    Christian Observer Forums: CO-URC | 8/9/2012 | Darrell Todd Maurina
    If you're a Free Republic participant, I already know you're a political conservative. If you're a member of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, Presbyterian Church in America, or United Reformed Churches, and if you don't know what "two kingdoms" theology is, you need to read this post. Matt Tuininga, who is the son of one of the founders of the United Reformed Churches in North America and is currently doing his doctoral dissertation at Emory University on John Calvin's political views, has put up an interesting post here on how what he calls "Old Reformed" theology differs from the Escondido Two...
  • Get rid of the right to bear arms (NYT article on revising the Constitution)

    07/09/2012 5:30:24 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 134 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 7/8/2012 | Melynda Price
    I came of age when the word “drive-by” entered the American lexicon. By high school graduation, I lost one cousin to gun violence and another was incarcerated for a gun crime. I know many harmed by guns and even more who feared the possibility. I always wonder if, but for the Second Amendment, there would be a more radical commitment to compromise and peacefully working through easy and difficult issues. In writing the Second Amendment, the Framers didn't envision the kind of gun toting that is permitted across this country today.... I am not naïve enough to believe that doing...
  • France’s Turn for the Worse... Europe’s far right has already won

    05/05/2012 8:51:03 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 29 replies
    Slate ^ | 5/4/2012 | Yascha Mounk
    On Sunday, by almost every indication, François Hollande, who has been leading in the polls for months, will defeat Nicolas Sarkozy and become France’s next president. Hollande’s Socialist Party, which hasn’t ousted an incumbent president in over three decades, has every reason to celebrate. But the true winner of this election isn’t France’s left; it’s Europe’s far right. The reason is simple. In this election, France’s establishment has embraced Islamophobic ideas to an unprecedented degree. Right-wing populism, once a fringe phenomenon, has been conquering the bastions of Europe’s political mainstream with frightening speed; even so, most observers failed to predict...
  • Romney the Centrist Peeks Out (Romney trying to become more of a RINO)

    04/10/2012 6:18:50 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 11 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 4/8/2012 | Thomas B. Edsall
    It was just one line slipped into the middle of a paragraph of Mitt Romeny's speech on April 3 celebrating his primary victories in Wisconsin, Maryland and the District of Columbia: “And the most vulnerable have been hurt the most — over 30 percent of single moms are struggling in poverty.” Seemingly unremarkable, these 19 words represent one of the many steps Romney will be taking as he treks back to the center in the aftermath of a primary campaign dominated by the hard right... Without drawing attention to his rhetorical shift, Romney, in a speech on March 30 at...
  • Conservatives ally for a reset of election expectations (RINOs: we shouldn't seek conservatives)

    04/06/2012 11:21:33 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 98 replies
    The Washington Times ^ | 4/4/2012 | Ralph Z. Hallow
    Some influential conservative thinkers have concluded that Mitt Romney’s struggle to ignite voter enthusiasm reflects a more serious problem for Republicans in setting unrealistic expectations for their presidential nominee. Calling their alliance Project Liberty, the newly formed group says the former Massachusetts governor cannot beat President Obama unless tea party members and the GOP’s activists — including conservatives on the Republican National Committee — adjust their mindset about insisting on a fully formed, ideologically reliable candidate as their standard-bearer.... Project Liberty backers have concluded that Mr. Romney will not win the White House on the basis of something he is...
  • ‘Liberated’ from the Tea Party?

    04/02/2012 1:33:26 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 20 replies
    The Weekly Standard ^ | 4/2/2012 | Stephen F. Hayes
    In many ways, the story of the 2012 Republican primary has been the inability of Mitt Romney to win over more than a third of self-identified “strong Tea Party supporters” or “very conservative” voters. If he had received the support of those voters, even a slim majority of them, the race would almost certainly have been over weeks ago. Where Romney hasn’t yet succeeded with most grassroots conservatives and Tea Partiers, he’s had remarkable success in the past two weeks gaining the support of their leaders... It would seem, then, that everyone associated with Romney’s campaign would avoid saying anything...
  • As Romney nears nod, GOP base nods off; Enthusiasm saved for Obama ouster

    04/02/2012 1:11:18 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 33 replies
    The Washington Times ^ | 4/1/2012 | Seth McLaughlin
    Pledges of support from powerful Republicans last week may have edged Mitt Romney closer to the GOP presidential nomination, but the former Massachusetts governor still struggles to fire the imaginations of most in his party — even the coveted endorsements from former President George H.W. Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida seemed underwhelming in tone. Mr. Rubio and Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who also endorsed Mr. Romney last week, focused less on his qualifications for the presidency than on the vulnerabilities of President Obama. “[Mr. Romney‘s] challenge, assuming he gets the nomination, is to create more enthusiasm among...
  • Green Baggins, 2K, Westminster-West, gay marriage, and Calvinist politics

    03/22/2012 7:58:02 AM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 31 replies · 1+ views
    (vanity) | 3/22/2012 | Darrell Todd Maurina
    If you're a Free Republic participant, I already know you're a political conservative. If you're a member of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, Presbyterian Church in America, or United Reformed Churches, and if you don't know what "two kingdoms" theology is, you need to read this post. What follows is the CO-URC version of posts I made today on the United Reformed and Orthodox Presbyterian listserves run by Christian Observer magazine. It responds to this thread on the Green Baggins blog owned by Rev. Lane Keister: You can find the OPC and URC versions of my posts here:
  • Rick Santorums presidential campaign trail makes stop in Osage Beach

    03/17/2012 3:53:03 PM PDT · by darrellmaurina · 15 replies
    Camdenton Lake Sun Leader ^ | 3/16/2012 | Deanna Wheeler
    Lake of the Ozarks, Mo. — It was the very last few lines written in the Declaration of Independence that sealed the deal for Rick Santorum to run as a Republican candidate in the race for President. "And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor," the last line reads. Holding up a pocket-sized booklet of the Declaration of Indepence that he carries with him, Santorum said he stared at those signatures imaging what it was like to...
  • 2012 or Never: Why 2012 is the Republicans Last Chance

    03/05/2012 12:55:08 PM PST · by darrellmaurina · 36 replies
    New York Magazine ^ | 2/26/2012 | Jonathan Chait
    Of the various expressions of right-wing hysteria that have flowered over the past three years—goldbuggery, birtherism, death panels at home and imaginary apology tours by President Obama abroad—perhaps the strain that has taken deepest root within mainstream Republican circles is the terror that the achievements of the Obama administration may be irreversible, and that the time remaining to stop permanent nightfall is dwindling away. “America is approaching a ‘tipping point’ beyond which the Nation will be unable to change course,” announces the dark, old-timey preamble to Paul Ryan’s “The Roadmap Plan,” a statement of fiscal principles that shaped the budget...
  • State-by-State Analysis: Romney Could Win Majority of Super Tuesday Delegates

    03/05/2012 12:39:53 PM PST · by darrellmaurina · 11 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 3/4/2012 | Nate Silver
    Although the Super Tuesday states are a mix of favorable and unfavorable terrain for Mitt Romney, his situation has improved enough that he could be on track to win an outright majority of the delegates on the night. Indeed, Mr. Romney could secure the delegate majority even if he wins as few as 4 or 5 states, based on an analysis of the current polling in each state and the complex series of rules that are used to govern delegate allocation. This path involves Mr. Romney winning all or nearly all of the delegates in his strongest states, while getting...
  • Branding a Soldier With ‘Personality Disorder’ (is DOD saving money by avoiding PTSD diagonses?)

    02/25/2012 7:30:34 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 23 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 2/24/2012 | James Dao
    Capt. Susan Carlson was not a typical recruit when she volunteered for the Army in 2006 at the age of 50. But the Army desperately needed behavioral health professionals like her, so it signed her up. Captain Carlson went to Afghanistan in 2011, seeking “to experience what soldiers experience.” Though she was, by her own account, “not a strong soldier,” she received excellent job reviews at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., where she counseled prisoners. But last year, Captain Carlson, a social worker, was deployed to Afghanistan with the Colorado National Guard and everything fell apart. After a soldier complained that she...
  • Campaigning Against the Modern World (longtime PA reporter outlines why Santorum is angry)

    02/25/2012 7:16:36 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 29 replies · 1+ views
    The New York Times ^ | 2/24/2012 | Tom Ferrick, Jr.
    As a journalist who covered Rick Santorum in Pennsylvania for years, I can understand the Tea Party’s infatuation with him. It’s his anger. It is in perfect synch with the constituency he is wooing. Even at the height of his political success, when he had a lot to be happy about, Santorum was an angry man. I found it odd. I was used to covering politicians who had good dispositions — or were good at pretending they had good dispositions. Santorum was different... People who don’t know him — and just see the angry Rick — don’t realize what a...
  • In Michigan, Voters Question Romney’s Conservative Credentials (social issues, not just economy)

    02/23/2012 4:42:36 AM PST · by darrellmaurina · 13 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 2/21/2012 | Michael Barbaro
    SHELBY, Mich. — Mitt Romney wants to talk about the economy — badly. It’s his longed-for comfort zone. It’s his standard stump speech. It’s the issue that has consumed his campaign. The Republicans voters at a town hall here? Not so much. During a campaign event on Tuesday, they bombarded Mr. Romney with questions about how he would protect religious liberty against government intrusion; about the depth of his commitment to fighting to abortion; about whether he would appoint strict constructionist judges to the Supreme Court; and about what kind of vice presidential nominee he would name. It was a...