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April 06, 2020, 01:23:17 pm

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General Discussion / Re: Christianity and Trump
Last post by Pete - March 30, 2020, 10:38:36 am
Quote from: flaglady on March 27, 2020, 06:33:18 pmNOT something to 'trump' about!
I have a friend in Kansas that I speak to on a fairly regular basis and last week she proudly stated that "We're alright. Apparently we'll be going back to normal in 2-4 weeks time!" I'm sure she must have heard my jaw hit the table but she fobbed me off when I said it would be more like 12 months! And that's the estimate in the UK.
Yesterday, Mr. Trump apparently finally listened to his health professionals and extended our social distancing guidelines until the end of April, which seems more reasonable. Not that this will all be over by then, but hopefully they can at least begin easing some of those guidelines by early May.

O0
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General Discussion / Re: Christianity and Trump
Last post by Pete - March 30, 2020, 09:57:09 am
It's stuff like this that makes me scratch my head.

On Thursday, March 26, Mr. Trump called into Sean Hannity's show on Fox News. During that conversation, he said the following, which is a direct copy and paste from the transcript of that show (I'm bolding the parts that are relevant in this word salad;  (Also maybe you can answer this Jo, but don't hospitals have far more than ONE ventilator?)

QuoteMr. Trump: And you know, the good ones are very, very expensive. And you know, they'd say, like Governor Cuomo and others that say we want, you know, 30,000 of them, 30,000. All right. Think of this. You know, you go to hospitals, they'll have one in a hospital. And now, all of a sudden everybody's asking for these vast numbers. So -- but we have now companies stepping up and they're building them. They're doing the masks. We've already delivered millions and millions of masks. But remember, we're really a second line of attack. The first line of attack is supposed to be the hospitals and the local government and the states, the states themselves. I mean, we people like Governor Inslee. He should be doing more. He shouldn't be relying on the federal government. Governor Inslee, that's the state of Washington. He was a failed presidential candidate. And you know, he's always complaining. And your governor of Michigan, I mean, she's not stepping up. I don't know if she knows what's going on. But all she does is sit there and blame the Federal government. She doesn't get it done. And we send her a lot. Now she wants a declaration of emergency. And you know, we'll have to make a decision on that. But Michigan is a very important state. I love the people of Michigan what they do. I'm the one -- I'm bringing back many, many car factories into Michigan. And she is a new governor. And it's not been pleasant. And you know, you look around and you see what's going on. And by the way, most governors have been fantastic. I have to tell you. Most of them have been -- whether it's Democrat or Republican but we've had a trouble -- we've really had some trouble with the state of Washington. The governor, he's a -- and he ran for president, didn't exactly do well. He got zero. And we've had a big problem with the young, a woman governor from, you know who I'm talking about, from Michigan. So we can't, you know, we don't like to see the complaints. And I am getting along with Governor Cuomo. I think that a lot of things are being said that are more. I don't think that certain things will materialize. And you know a lot -- a lot of equipment's being asked for that I don't think they'll need but I'm building.

Then yesterday, Sunday, March 29, Yamiche Alcindor from PBS NewsHour started to ask this question, before being cut off by Mr. Trump;

QuoteYamiche Alcindor: Thank you, Mr. President. I have two questions. The first is you've said repeatedly that you think that some of the equipment that governors are requesting they don't actually need. You said New York might not need 30,000-

As you can see from the Transcript from Hannity above, that's exactly what Mr. Trump said just 3 days earlier. So his response to her?

QuoteMr. Trump: I didn't say that.

Um, yes he did. Less than 72 hours before he was asked this question. So then this played out;

QuoteYamiche Alcindor:
You said it on Sean Hannity's Fox News. You said that you might-

Donald Trump:
Why don't you people act, let me ask you-

Yamiche Alcindor:
You said some states-

Donald Trump:
Why don't you act in a little more positive? It's always trying to get you-

Yamiche Alcindor:
My question to you is-

Donald Trump:
Get you, get you, and you know what? That's why nobody trusts the media anymore.

Yamiche Alcindor:
My question to you is how is that going to impact-

Donald Trump:
That's why people...

Excuse me, you didn't hear me, that's why you used to work for The Times and now you work for somebody else. Look, let me tell you something, be nice. Don't be-

Yamiche Alcindor:
Mr. President, my question is ...

Donald Trump:
... don't be threatening, be nice. Go ahead.

Yamiche Alcindor:
My question is, how is that going to impact how you fill these orders for ventilators, or for mass? Your views that-

Donald Trump:
It's not going to impact.

Yamiche Alcindor:
It's not going to impact you at all?

Donald Trump:
We're producing tremendous numbers of ventilators, we're doing a great job on it, Mike Pence, our vice president, just headed up the task force, which has been incredible the job they've done, we have everybody in the White House working on it, everybody in the country is working on this in one way or the other, the fact is we've done a great job of delivering. You've seen the biggest people in the business. I mean, there's nobody even close to this group of people, we had a meeting at three o'clock, it lasted for a long time, it was a great meeting with the generals, and with everybody else, and they have done a fantastic job. I'm just saying this, if they're holding ... Let me give you one example, we sent thousands of generators to New York, they were put into a warehouse, a New York warehouse, that happened to be located, interestingly, in Edison, New Jersey, they were given to New York, and we then went to other places also giving thousands of ventilators. The people in New York never distributed the generators. We said, "Why didn't you distribute them?" Now, you have to understand, they have New York people working in those warehouses, they knew they had them, so we said, "Why didn't you distribute them?" I hope they've distributed them now, but maybe they didn't need them so badly, but just so you know, we're all, you, me, everybody, we're all on the same team. When journalists get up, and you're a journalist, a fine journalist, when journalists get up-

Yamiche Alcindor:
I was quoting you directly from Sean Hannity.

Donald Trump:
... and ask questions that are so threatening, we're all on the same team.

Yamiche Alcindor:
I was quoting you directly from your interview with Sean Hannity.

Donald Trump:
Take a look at my interview, what I want to do is if there is something wrong, we have to get to the bottom of it. When I hear facemasks go from 10,000 to 300,000 and they constantly need more, and the biggest man in the business is shocked, he knows all about the virus by the way, he's not surprised by that, he knows all about it, he shouldn't be surprised, he should say, "Well, they're standard because this is really a very tough disease. This is really a very tough virus to handle." Okay, please go ahead-


So a reporter asks a perfectly valid question, Mr. Trump denies he even said what he clearly said, and then lashes out at her by saying she should be "nice" and stop "threatening" him. 

Like, what? And did you also notice that despite Mr. Trump being very disrespectful and personally attacking the reporter, she did not respond in kind? 

Yet there are still people out there who think the media is trying to get Mr. Trump. I suppose if by "get" you mean hold him accountable for the things he says, then yeah, they're trying to "get" him.

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General Discussion / Re: Christianity and Trump
Last post by Renee - March 28, 2020, 07:36:48 pm
During the last voting season I told Ken I have a bad feeling about Trump. For a bit there I started leaning towards supporting him because he was doing so much good. I've come to the point where that bad feeling has returned and is getting stronger. I've come to believe that all the "good" we're seeing is a smoke screen for something sinister going on behind the scenes, that he is pushing for.
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General Discussion / Re: Christianity and Trump
Last post by flaglady - March 27, 2020, 06:33:18 pm
Quote from: Pete on March 26, 2020, 10:49:51 amWe are on track to surpass Italy in the number of infections in the next 2-3 days
NOT something to 'trump' about!

Quote from: Pete on March 26, 2020, 10:49:51 amMr. Trump has said he'd like to open the country, or at least parts of the country, by Easter
I have a friend in Kansas that I speak to on a fairly regular basis and last week she proudly stated that "We're alright. Apparently we'll be going back to normal in 2-4 weeks time!" I'm sure she must have heard my jaw hit the table but she fobbed me off when I said it would be more like 12 months! And that's the estimate in the UK.

Sad thing is, thinking of all the smaller businesses and shops that have probably been hanging on by the skin of their teeth for the past 2-4 years and will very likely never return. It will be a very different world when we all emerge from our seclusion.
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General Discussion / Re: Christianity and Trump
Last post by Pete - March 26, 2020, 10:49:51 am
Another data point that confuses the heck out of me in our current situation; Mr. Trump's approval rating regarding the Coronavirus is increasing. And I have no idea why?

By no objective measure is the United States doing a good job with the Coronavirus situation. We are on track to surpass Italy in the number of infections in the next 2-3 days (ETA: Seems I was a bit too conservative in my estimate. The US has officially surpassed Italy in the number of infections as of this afternoon.) and we are on pace to surpass China to have the largest number of infections in the world within a week unless our trendline changes fast (ETA: Well, I was wrong here also. We've already surpassed China and the US is now number one for infections in the world.) Yet Mr. Trump has claimed that we are "winning". Not sure what we're winning? Having the largest number of infections in the world is not a prize that I want to "win".

I honestly wonder if the people that think Mr. Trump is doing a good job have watched any of his daily press briefings. 10+ people stand on a platform nearly shoulder to shoulder in defiance of their own guidelines suggesting that there should be no groups of 10 or more and that you should stay 6 feet apart. The two doctors, that should be guiding and leading our response, stand there while Mr. Trump opines and bloviates about what a spectacular job he's doing. Then one by one, the rest of the people take their turn praising Mr. Trump. Mr. Pence in particular, who is ostensibly leading this "task force", gushes about what a great job is being done by the President. It's almost as if he's incapable of making a single statement without it including some form of "thanks to the President's great leadership/decisive action", "at the direction of the President", or some other sycophantic gushing. Then at the end of the briefing, poor Dr. Fauci has to get up and try to walk back much of what Mr. Trump just said.

Mr. Trump has said he'd like to open the country, or at least parts of the country, by Easter. So two days ago in one of these press briefings, a reporter asked the following question (from the White House transcript);

QuoteA question for you, Mr. President and Dr. Fauci, if we could.  This would -- looking at this idea of an Easter timeline -- and I know that's probably flexible -- what are the metrics by which you will make the decision as to whether you can say, "Yes, we can open up this area of the country" or "No, we can't open up that area."  I mean, will you be looking at disease numbers?  Will you be looking at possible containment, isolation?  What are you (inaudible)?

This is a good question. Essentially, how will we know that it's safe to open a given area of our country? And here is Mr. Trump's response;

QuoteI think we'll be looking at a lot of things.  We'll also be looking at very large portions of our country.  And I will be guided very much by Dr. Fauci and by Deborah and by some of the other professionals that work with both of you.

And we're going to see what -- what will be, but that would certainly be -- I think that's a goal that perhaps can happen, or at least for a very large portion of our country.


Now maybe it's just me, but that smacks of having no idea what he's talking about. The question was what metric will we use. The answer? "A lot of things". Insightful. But he thinks it's a goal that can happen. No explanation of why he thinks that or what metric makes him think it's possible, but he thinks it might happen. Just wait and see. We'll have to look at many things. And good things will happen. Just wait. You'll see great things happen, and I think a lot sooner than everyone thinks...

This isn't leadership which is what our country desperately needs right now. Yet his approval numbers keep going up. And I increasingly think that I must be living in a parallel, upside-down universe.

O0
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General Discussion / Re: Christianity and Trump
Last post by flaglady - March 26, 2020, 08:51:00 am
Quote from: Pete on March 05, 2020, 09:11:42 pmMr. Trump has said, and I quote, "Then I have an article two, where I have the right to do whatever I want as President".
W-w-w-w-what??? That is heinous! Outrageous! No president, prime minister or any other person in power should be able to do that. Not in a democratic society. Because then it becomes a dictatorship - does it not?


( BTW, I obviously missed this earlier. Tut tut - must  read posts more carefully in future!)
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General Discussion / Re: How to approach the Corona...
Last post by flaglady - March 26, 2020, 08:24:54 am
Pete, I will cetainly join your meeting next Sunday. Your description of how it works gave me goosebumps and when I read your hope that I join you, I felt a huge wave of the Holy Spirit wash over me! Haven't actually felt that in a long time!

sofa
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General Discussion / Re: Christianity and Trump
Last post by Pete - March 23, 2020, 04:15:43 pm
Quote from: Balance on March 23, 2020, 02:00:13 pmI understand that the President is not a politician, he is bold, crass and at times demeaning. (just like a 71yr old billionaire business man).

But what beliefs in the Republican Party have changed?

They were Pro life before - still are
They were strong 2nd amendment before - still are
They were strong borders - still are.

What within the party has changed?
Hey Balance, long time no "see". It's good to hear from you again.

As to what has changed, your comment is a prime example of why I can no longer call myself a Republican. Your dismissal of Mr. Trump's lack of character and integrity as just being endemic of a 71-year-old billionaire businessman gets a collective "meh" from the Republican party, and I do not understand why.

Christians used to at least pretend as if they cared about the character and integrity of our leaders. All of that pretense is gone now. As your comment illustrates, as long as they can keep their guns, give lip service to the pro-life movement and keep out illegal aliens, that's all that really matters to many Republicans. It doesn't matter that Mr. Trump can't be trusted to tell the truth on the most mundane of topics. It doesn't matter that he's been found guilty of stealing money from his charities. It doesn't matter that he calls people names like a petulant child. It doesn't matter that he's paid hush money to porn stars (and lied about it).

The last few days I've watched the daily press briefings from the Coronavirus task force, and it has laid bare all of Mr. Trump's faults and inadequacies for the world to see. Dr. Anthony Fauci (who Mr. Trump flippantly refers to as "Tony" in these press briefings) often has to try to correct the misinformation Mr. Trump spews. Mr. Trump's narcissism is on display for the world to see. He cares only for himself and being portrayed as the hero who can do no wrong. Don't believe me? Listen to one of these press briefings and count how many times someone praises Mr. Trump. Particularly Mr. Pence, who is allegedly leading the Coronavirus task force. I'm convinced that his job in the press briefing is to lavish praise on just what a spectacular job the President is doing, regardless of what the facts and reality say.

But I digress from my rambling to say...  There are so many ways that the Republican party has fundamentally changed that I don't even know where to start. So when you ask that to me, I sit dumbfounded at how anyone cannot see the complete and total surrender of the Republican party to whatever dear leader's whims are at the moment.

This is all bad enough for me from a Republican perspective, but it is even worse from a Christian perspective. Character and integrity absolutely should matter to us as Christians, but it seems to me that Christians no longer value these traits in our leadership, and that concerns me. I truly believe that Christians are willfully surrendering their witness by continuing to excuse and endorse the bad behaviors of our President, and they are paving the way for our own greater persecution.

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General Discussion / Re: Christianity and Trump
Last post by Balance - March 23, 2020, 02:00:13 pm
Quote from: Pete on March 04, 2020, 08:07:10 pmIt's not so much that I'm protesting anything as it is a personal choice for me. I cannot in good conscious call myself a Republican. I am a conservative-leaning independent. The Republican party is no longer representative of my beliefs and values, and it's not like the Republican party is going to select a different candidate.


I understand that the President is not a politician, he is bold, crass and at times demeaning. (just like a 71yr old billionaire business man).

But what beliefs in the Republican Party have changed?

They were Pro life before - still are
They were strong 2nd amendment before - still are
They were strong borders - still are.

What within the party has changed?
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General Discussion / Re: How to approach the Corona...
Last post by Pete - March 23, 2020, 09:04:18 am
So our church is viewing the coronavirus as an opportunity. While most churches have gone to an online streaming format where congregation members can watch the service, we've taken a different approach. Since our church is relatively small (we typically have between 30-50 currently on a Sunday morning), we are doing a Zoom video conference call. Our first call was yesterday morning and it was a huge success! We had 42 people represented on the video call with about 22 separate connections. We opened up the call around 9:00, about an hour before we were planning to start, and as people joined, we were able to fellowship altogether. This was a nice change from what typically happens prior to a physical church service, with smaller groups talking together. The Zoom video call means everyone is involved in the same conversation, which was nice. Then around 10:00, our pastor shared a message of encouragement for about 25 minutes, and then we opened it up for a big group discussion. Multiple people shared verses and encouragement and we all just spent a great time of fellowship together before closing out with a group prayer. Given the circumstances, we now find ourselves in, it was a great service!

We're also going to be able to do things we could never do in our regular service. For example, I'm really hoping, Jo, that you are able to join us next week. I saw your posts on Facebook and we would love to have you fellowship and worship with us!

I'm reminded of something I learned in a leadership class regarding "change", and that is when things don't go our way, we can get bitter, or we can get better. So be encouraged each time you encounter adversity to view it as an opportunity. What the devil means for evil, God turns for good!

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