Tuesday, February 27, 2007

And Now a Word from Our Sponsor

For the past week-and-a-half, I've been struggling with Comcast, my wireless internet provider. My service, which has been fairly decent up to now, has recently gone from existent to non-existent to sporadically existent back to existent but painfully slow. I have been on the phone, or cued up, to talk to their well trained (with exasperated customers) representatives at least 10-15 times over the past eight days. And they've sent men out to my home to try to figure what's working improperly on three occasions.

Now, I think it might be fixed, finally, though I don't want to get my hopes up too much.

In any event, after a recent sinking spell because of internet woes and winter blahs--I'm hopelessly dull at this time of year--I plan to get back into the groove of writing soon, not just waiting to speak to another Comcast customer service representative.

But first, a good night's sleep is in order.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Tim Keller on Idolatry

Tim Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York, defines idolatry thusly:
"Idolatry is taking a good thing and making it an ultimate thing."
What is in our lives--if suddenly taken away--would affect us to the point that we might not want to go on living? A tough question that gets to the heart of what we organize our lives around for meaning, identity, significance, and love other than God.
Thomas Chalmers the 18th century Scottish Presbyterian pastor talks about idols and personal transformation: "There is not one personal transformation in which the heart is left without an object of ultimate beauty and joy. The heart's desire for one particular object can be conquered, but it's desire to have some object is unconquerable. The only way to dispossess the heart of an old affection is by the expulsive power of a new one."
In another wonderful sermon---which I can't link directly to---Keller talks about finding transformation and dismantling idols---through the power of Jesus Christ working in our lives. Scroll down to the sermon entitled "Christ our Life," based on a Scripture reading from Colossians 3:1-14.
It doesn't get much better than Keller.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

My Vote for Best Picture Oscar: The Queen

My hands-down favorite movie this year. Long live "The Queen."

Friday, February 23, 2007

John Kenneth Galbraith on Conventional Wisdom

"The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking."

And the conventional view is rarely, if ever, right., I might add. It's like an executive being on the cover of TIME or another big national mag, it usually means the man or company has already peaked and on the downhill slide. So it goes with the rise of conventional, often hysterical thinking---like global warming. Or the population bomb or global freezing of yesteryear.

Whenever conventional views reach such a crescendo as we see today, with people everywhere jumping on the bandwagon of "truth," the smart money and people have long since moved on from the hype.

Learning to think for oneself, outside the buzz of "undisputable" wisdom, has got to be one of life's greatest but worthwhile challenges.

I believe the latest mass group-think--global warming--will prove to be the shibboleth of the century and will never come to pass. But not, unfortunately, before Al Gore is crowned king of the mythical One World Kingdom. Stay tuned for his extended coronation...

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Feminism and Female Oppression over at The American Thinker

I often wonder why feminists in our country are silent when it comes of the total opporession of women abroad, especially in the Middle East. This article puts it well. They have reframed oppression into a new brand of feminism. Wow, what a little relativism can do for one's perspective these days.

Then why a staunch Southern pro-lifer is backing Giuliani. It's short and sweet and well worth reading. I, as a conservative, Christian woman, strongly support Rudy because I think he's undoubtedly the best man for the job at this time of global war.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Being Online Verses Being Off

I suppose everyone has to reassess how much time they spend online verses off.

And for the first time I'm doing that in my life.

Since starting this blog last October, I have spent more time online than I ever dreamed possible. Because I'm also an online investor for many years and do much of my research and chart reading on the web, the amount of time I now spend on the computer has doubled or tripled in the past year.

Is it healthy for me? Can I sustain it? Can I add anything really unique to the political and cultural conversation in substance or style? Or can and should I only offer a rehashing and reframing of what's already out there from some really good online minds? And is it really worthwhile?

But most of all, do I want to? And am I too addicted too stop?

I love to write and read and since starting to read some of the more conservative political blogs last year--especially the likes of American Digest, Roger Simon, Works and Days, Powerline, Atlas Shrugs and Neo-neocon---all found on the right side links bar here--- I have feasted on sophisticated daily opinions and enjoyed it all immensely. I've loved reading, thinking about, commenting and then writing my take here at Webutante.

But lately, I am beginning to get bored and overwhelmed with all the daily blather--- wonderful as it's been---and dread the upcoming election. I'm finding myself griping a bit about the long lengths and numbers of posts, and often the nasty tone and the tenor. Some of it comes as across as self-righteous.

Even Victor Davis Hanson is starting to be laborious to me, as he writes longer and longer pieces, especially over at Works and Days. When people write too much---like talking too much--- I tend to tune out and walk away, even though they have important things to say.

I can better handle Roger Simon's work on a dailybasis because it's usually short and to the point. And the comments are often interesting.

With a presidential election coming up, just how involved and invested in all this do I really want to be? It's gonna get really, really mean-spirited out there in politikland. We ain't seen nothing yet.

I find online blogs to be very sticky---easy to get hooked on and very hard to get away from. And there's very little online support for someone like me. And for the most part, that's okay cause I still have plenty of real life friends and family, most of whom spend very little time online reading or caring about blogs---good for them!

Still, perhaps because I have just returned from a prayer retreat in Arizona, I am starting to question my priorities during these cold, dreary weeks in February. Aren't there people I want to spend more time with face to face? And offline projects? And more time outdoors?

Yes, yes and yes.

Most likely, I won't can this blog, but rather scale back from daily posting to writing several times a week, with Sundays still reserved for a good sermon. I want this to be a small part of my life, but not the centerpoint of my life. And--like all things addictive--it's a slippery , seductive slope and could become that.

I don't think that's ultimately healthy for me and will seek to find more balance in the weeks and months ahead between virtuality and reality.

Thanks for reading, I'll keep you posted. Am on my way out the door to breakfast with a friend.

Monday, February 19, 2007

If You Only See One YouTube Video This Week, Watch This One

This is Rep. Sam Johnson of the 3rd District in Texas. He is a former fighter pilot in Korea and Viet Nam where he was shot down and captured as a POW for seven years. Here he argues for supporting the troops in Iraq in the House last week.

Touching, poignant and eloquent. Listen to the whole thing.

One of My Favorite Former Presidents: John Adams

John Adams, 1735-1826
President of the United States, 1779-1801

Founding Father, Foreign Diplomat and Ambassador, Husband Extraordinaire to Abigail---his equal and best friend, first Vice-President of the United States under George Washington, and its second President, John Adams remains one of the foremost characters in early American history.

He is the only early American President who still has no memorial in Washington D.C. dedicated to his service to our country and its founding. A man of less tact and gentility than his more sauve friend and rival, Thomas Jefferson, Adams, a Federalist, was nonetheless a man of the highest intergrity. With Adams one always knew where one stood, like it or not, and that was rarely the case with the more sneaky Jefferson.

Like our current President, John Adams served in turbulent times, and though his controversial foreign policies were ultimately successful, he was perceived as being less effective by the media and his enemies, including Jefferson, his VP.

Jefferson worked diligently behind the scenes to undermine Adams who lost his election to a second term to his unfaithful Vice-President.

Adams departed the White House and Washington, not even staying to attend Jefferson's swearing in as the third President.

Recalling that turn of event years later, Adams noted: " No man who ever held the office of president would ever congratulate a friend on obtaining it."

I'm sure George Bush might agree with Adams at this point. But Adams would tell Bush, if he were still alive, that history has a way of vindicating a great President sooner or later.

Today, I salute a former under-loved and under-appreciated President from our past: John Adams., whose son, John Quincy Adams went on to become the fifth President of our country.

Adams, like Bush today, held on to his principles to the end, even though it cost him popularity in the polls and with the people. My kind of man. Our country needs more like him today.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

My Least Favorite Former President

Nuttin nice to say about this nut. Nuff said.

Sunday, Home and Two Important Sermons

Bitter cold and windy weather followed me across the country all week.

Yet, coming home, even in this weather and road weary as I was, was wonderful. I always give thanks for safe traveling. This was a superb trip: lots of hiking, prayer, some good company and a good friend for much of the time. And it's always fun to wander around in this great and vast, vast country.

And now home.

But with a twinge of sadness that Laura is not here anymore to listen to tales of my adventures. I miss her.

Today, Dr. David Jeremiah continues his series on Joseph who suffered as much as any man in the Old Testament: sold to slavery by his brothers, falsely accused of adultery with an Egyptian woman and thrown into prison. Yet, because he had a strong relationship with God, nothing could do him in and he continued to rise to the top in everything he did and wherever he was placed. In the end, he rose to second-in-command in Egypt under Pharoah.

Not bad for a little Jewish kid abandoned by his brothers and thought to be dead by his bereaved father.

But he remained under God's watchful protection every step of the way.

Present problems are often training grounds for future leadership positions. Right behavior isn't always rewarded promptly and sometimes we must suffer terribly for it---and still refrain from bitterness. Not an easy road.

But all things work for good--ultimately--to him or her who love and obey Christ. Though things often don't always work out the way we think or plan.

The life of Joseph should give us all hope and perseverence.


A second semon I'm posting is today's at McLean Bible Church. Lon Solomon talks about doing things our way verses God's way here.

It is well worth noting that Solomon uses an example of prayer at the Constitutional Convention in the summer of 1787 and a speech advocating continued fervent prayer by Benjamen Franklin in ending the gridlock at that convention, so that the country could be successfully founded. Many say it was one of the most important turning points of the convention.

Our nation was founded on and by the Grace of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and through the power of prayer.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Joel Rosenberg on How the Dems Are Trying to Tie Bush's Hands in Iran; Defeat Us in Iraq

There are times when I just can't click on Joel's blog because he is so perceptive and prescient.

It's scary. He writes about issues in the Middle East with such foreknowledge that I almost can't look. He says what he writes is all predicted in the Bible. And I believe him.

According to Joel, things continue to line up according to ancient Bible prophecy, especially the book of Ezekiel. Russia is lining up with Iran. And Iran wants to wipe Israel off the map.

Don't miss his posts and especially today's.

Nancy Pelosi continues to ignore the reality of war and pass resolutions condemning Bush's new plan in Iraq. She's a lightweight. What's it going to take to get it that we're in a war with countries and peoples that want to destroy us? And destroy us sooner rather than later?

And so Pelosi and company continue to fiddle and play politics and in doing so only embolden those who want to clean our clocks. Frightening beyond words.

God help us all. And God forbid that we elect a new president that seeks to appease our enemies.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Two Award Winning Stops Along I-40 and Old U.S. Route 66

I'm traveling back to the South on I-40---along the old U.S. Route 66---after several weeks in southern Arizona.

Here are two Webutante award winning stops along the way: a restaurant and a rest room.

First, Burger Hut above for Mex food and guacamole, guacamole, guacamole near the California/Arizona border. A one-of-a-kind little jewel that hits the spot!

Then, the ladies rest room at a dazzling new eastbound rest stop near Amarillo, Texas. It comes with everything, including sparkling clean "powder rooms" and a tornado shelter. But with snow and bitter cold winds today and yesterday, tornados were the least of our worries.

I think Texas has the best rest stops in the entire country. They truly do a bang up job. California, on the other hand, gets poor marks by comparison.

40 All The Way (Almost) and It's Bitter Cold and Windy in the Heartland

What can I say, global warrrrrrmmmmmmm, warrrmmmmmg has definitely set in. Brrrrrrrrrr. Someone please call Al and ask him to bring me another down jacket and gloves.

Always fun to be on the road. But now, it will be great to get home!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Just Another Valentine's Day in Washington, D.C.

This is former U.S. Senator from Tennessee Fred Thompson's assessment of how Valentine's Day is playing out in the District:

"In Congress, they are debating a meaningless resolution. Down the street, they are trying a guy for lying about a leak. A House subcommittee had to cancel a hearing on global warming because of snow. Just another day in Washington. Happy Valentine's Day."

Thanks to The New Editor for this quote.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

"24"'s Got It Goin On


I know I'm late to the party, but now I'm hooked. Big time hooked.

Tonight was just too much.

They're about to take out the president because he's gone soft with the terrorists? And Jack Bauer's father is holding his grandson hostage and threatening to kill him in this family axis of evil? And that's not all either.

Amazing. Simply amazing. I don't like it that I'm starting to plan my entire week around Monday nights.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Sunday: Tim Keller on How the Gospel Converts

Without doubt, one of the finest teachers of the Gosepl in America is Tim Keller, senior pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City. I have the privilege of hearing Tim in person when I visit my son there. But in the meantime, I listen to him on CD, especially when I travel.

Here, Keller talks about how the Cross of Christ Converts and Changes us.

Unfortunately, I can't link directly to this series of talks. But if you follow the above link and scroll down you can find them. It is well worth your effort. And worth bookmarking for future listening.

And last, a beautiful hymn from Laura's funeral service this week, O God, Our Help in Ages Past at YouTube.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Weekend: Sassy....

..... prefers a man with a Harley and her googles polarized.

Editor's correction:...she prefers her goggles polarized.

Afraid I've been on the computer too long and anything that starts with a "g-o..." my fingers automatically type you-know-what.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Word To The Wise To Rudy

No one would like to see Rudy elected president in 2008 more than I. He has leadership qualities that will serve this country well during the upcoming years of our global war.

However, if he continues to pose for and release these ridiculous lovebird photos of himself and his second wife, Judith, I can assure him he will NEVER get elected.

It's an embarassment, Rudy, so cut it out and act like a serious candidate, instead of someone who just got off the frontpage of the National Enquirer.

You look like some sort of love slave (and she a dominatrix-- not exactly First Lady material), and as a presidential hopeful it's not very becoming, as my mother used to say.

It brings your judgment into question and is truly a faux pas, at least where I come from. You're going to have a hard enough time getting the southern conservative vote as it is.

Hopefully, too much damage hasn't been done by this, but only time will tell.


A commenter has correctly written to say that Judith is Rudy's third wife, rather than his second.

Also, another of my sources tells me that she has had a total makeover in the past year, in preparation for Giuliani's possible run. This highly glamorized image may end up working more against her, and them, rather than for them in the end, especially if she continues conjuring up staged, vanity photos like the one above.

I know I'm turned off by all this foolishness.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

For Laura, Who Died Today, With Love

Laura, my oldest and dearest relative, died this morning. She was like the mother that I lost in my early twenties. We were always so very fond of one another. She was a lady of the highest order and I shall miss her greatly, though I know she was ready to go. She was a voracious reader until her eyesight began to fail several years ago. I never heard her complain about anything. She lived her last days with grace and dignity. Next month she would have turned ninety.

May God bless and rest her soul.


Update: I flew home from Arizona yesterday to be with family and attend Laura's funeral today (Thursday). It was a simple, lovely service at her Methodist church here. We shall all miss her.
Friday, I fly back to the southwest desert for a few more days.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Super Sunday: Two Extraordinary Coaches and the Lord Who Rules Both Their Lives

Old friends, colleagues and rival head coaches meet this Super Bowl Sunday when Tony Dungy's Indianapolis Colts meet Lovie Smith's Chicago Bears in game XLI of the National Football League championship playoffs.

It's the ultimate in professional football. And the first time in history that not one, but two African American coaches have led their teams to the Super Bowl.

Whatever the outcome, these two fine men---as head coaches, mentors and role models---intend to use their high standing in professional football to higlight an even greater passion they share: their love and faith in Jesus Christ.

They like to call it: Beyond the Ultimate.

Athletes in Action has teamed up with both head coaches and several players to create an opportunity for them to use this historic stage to talk about their common faith in Christ.

Whatever you do, don't miss their inspirational words on this momentous occasion. May God bless them both--both on and off the playing field.This year, both the winner and the loser will give the glory to God and his Son.

Finally, winning the real game of life is the subject of Johnny Parker's sermon today at McLean Bible Church in Tysons Corner, Virginia.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Biden on Obama: Are We Outraged Yet, Mr. Wolcott?

When the Senate's Greatest Gaffe-meister meets the Senate's Man from Glad, it's enough to bring you out of retreat for a minute to make a little comment. And tears to your eyes.

But tears of what? Are we laughing or crying?

So let me get this straight: Senator Joe Biden, bigot from Delaware, was serious when he described Illinois Senator Barack Obama's presidential prospects as follows?:

"I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy...I mean that's a storybook, man."

Say what? Are you listening, Mr. Wolcott? Biden's giving a backhanded "compliment" to your man.

Joe's got to be kidding, right? Perhaps Senator Obama should loan him some of his soap to clean his mouth.

What an insult. And not just to Obama whom I am no fan of as a presidential candidate due to his monumental lack of experience and far left leanings. But to other black politicians whose accomplishments so surpass Biden's that he's not even worthy to polish any of their shoes:

Politicians like Colin Powell, Condolezza Rice, and Vernon Jordan.

I can only shudder to think what Biden's eastern elitist opinion of ordinary African-Americans are who aren't half-white like Obama or formerly headed the Harvard Law Review as Barack did when he was in law school there.

Not that Biden is a novice at this: How can we forget his recent gaffe regarding hardworking people from India: "You cannot go into a 7-11 or a Dunkin Doughnuts unless you have a slight Indian accent. I'm not joking."

Senator Biden, your blue blood is hemorrhaging.

But beyond that, where is the outrage for this kind of racist prattle in the MSM?

Are we outraged yet, Mr. Wolcott?



New York Times?

Katie and Diane?



Maybe it's only outrageous if it's spoken by a conservative. And the outrage meter goes through the roof, if it's Christian conservatives, or southern Christian conservatives whom the great eastern leftish elite regard as unreconstructed bigoted idiots.

It's called a double standard and it happens all the time.

Just as Trent Lott, among many others. Or George Allen who was excoriated in the press for using the word "macaca" in mocking an Indian American cameraman who was getting in his face during his campaign for US Senate.

But Biden's remarks go mostly unnoticed by the liberal elitists of the media and politics.

Well, Biden has surely sunk his presidential hopes--to borrow a favorite phrase of Obama---but his legacy of insults lives on. He now joins John Kerry in the Gaffe Hall of Shame, with Kerry on the Wall of Military/foreign policy gaffes and Biden on the Wall of Racism.

Good riddance, Senator Biden. You still have your senatorial soapbox to hurl your insults from, but you'll likely never have the Oval Office.

Still, being a US Senator is not a bad day job for white folk like you. Not bad at all. We all know when you get off the tennis courts you clean up pretty good, too.


UPDATE: Good for you Mr. Wolcott, I see your cats haven't got your tongue, after all. And you do have some well-deserved outrage over Biden's remarks. On that rare subject, we both agree.