HELLO! If this is your first time here, please click on Welcome to Praying 4 Common Sense . Please join me as we try to make sense of where politics and political correctness are leading our country while drawing reason and reminders from the Good Book, our faiths, common sense values and principles that make America the world's beacon of hope!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Feeling God's Presence

                                  "And He said, My presence will go with you,
                                   and I will give you rest."  -  Exodus 33:14

Monday morning. I was awaiting a phone call which could have a profound implication on the life of my adult son (who has autism). I could not wait for the phone to ring and get it over with. I was so nervous that even though it was just a phone interview, I thoroughly brushed my teeth and combed my hair, making sure that not a strand was out of place. It seemed to be taking forever for the phone to ring. By chance, I looked out the window. But it's not the flowers and the greenery in my front yard that met my eyes. It was something else. A tiny creature, resting on the exterior side of the window, its wings in wide expanse, so plain and simple - a white butterfly! Time stood still and every bit of my jittery nerves calmed down, my thoughts lost, farthest away from the anticipated call. I stood motionless. It was a moment to relish.

A white butterfly. It's not just an insect for me anymore. Lately, it's been my way of communicating with God, a symbol of reassurance and a calming presence. Just like most people, I worry about our daily lives, the economy, the political fighting in the capital, the direction that our country was going. Something has to change - and it has to start at the leadership in the White House. Anyone who reads this blog knows that I truly believe that there is one person who can and will bring the much needed shake-up in Washington, to reform our system and fight corruption - Sarah Palin. She has the the right combination of executive experience, the brave character and the right vision for America. But for the defenders of the status quo, Sarah Palin is a threat who needed to be vanquished, and try they did, in every conceivable, twisted, unimaginable way. She has the scars and bruises to prove her battles with them, yet she is still standing, prouder and stronger.

Back in April, I posted an article asking God, if it is His will for Governor Palin to be the next president of the United States of America, that He sends her a white butterfly. Privately, I prayed to Him to let me see one as well. I have no way of knowing if a white butterfly had been fluttering around the governor but on my end, every time the media baselessly attacked her, a white winged creature would be flying around me. When  they reported that her supporters are losing their patience waiting for her announcement on whether she'd run for president or not, a white butterfly showed up. And it was there, as I was feeling down when  the voters were quick to crown Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry as frontrunners, without so much as examining their records. Or when the blog Wonkette posted a disgusting article mocking her toddler with Down Syndrome, Trig. Or when a book, "The Rogue", came out with malicious, unfounded stories about her. Every time a lie was told about her, the white butterfly appeared. Every single time.

But that Monday morning, I believed that that white butterfly was meant for me. I walked up and touched it from my side of the window. It did not stir. I closed my eyes and felt a complete sense of peace wash over me. I could almost feel in my fingertips its soft and delicate wings, so light yet warm to my touch. I opened my eyes, and as if by cue, another white butterfly came and landed on the marigolds. It stayed there as if to allow my sight to bask in its simple and sheer beauty. In such a fragile creature, plain and unadorned,  I felt God's wondrous creation. I knew then that everything would be alright.

When the phone rang, I picked it up with a calm spirit. The man on the other end had a kind voice and was most helpful. The result of the interview was positive. My advocacy for my son had been successful.

A prayer and white butterflies. To believe is to see. I did.

Thank you, God.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Pres. Obama Takes His Sabbath a Little Too Seriously

                      "Observe the sabbath day and keep it holy,
                        as the Lord your God has commanded you."
                                                    - Deuteronomy 5:12

At the annual White House Correspondents' Dinner in May 2009, President Obama felt quite happy and contented that his first 100 days in the office had  been a whirlwind of activity and even joked that his next 100 hundred days would be so successful "I will be able to complete them in 72 days. And on the 73rd day, I will rest."

And rest he does. A lot.

The President takes his Sabbath a little too seriously. In his two years and nine months in office, he has gone golfing close to eighty times already and been on vacation  nine times since becoming president. A dutiful wife that she is, First Lady Michelle Obama makes sure that she follows her husband's lead in respecting the sabbath. Taking it a step further, she has gone on vacations sans Mr. Obama by her side meeting the King and Queen of Spain, visiting family roots in Africa and skiing in Vail, Colorado. In their last getaway to the ritzy Martha's Vineyard, she took indulgence to the next level by flying to Cape Cod in a separate plane with her daughters FOUR hours ahead of the president, going to the same place and at the same day!

There is nothing wrong at all with taking a break from hard work. God Himself commands us to keep our day of rest. Vacations are a symbol of an average American's lifestyle (used to be anyway, before the economy took a nosedive). People do not normally begrudge their elected officials taking a much needed respite. The world sits on the president's shoulders and he deserves times off to clear his mind. The $50,000 he pays for the summer retreat in Martha's Vineyard is surely a welcome infusion to the rental market. The first lady's trips overseas are certainly a boost to the struggling global economy.  But the private money the Obamas shell out for their leisure trips is dwarfed by the millions of public money that the taxpayers pay for their entourage of Secret Service, security details, fuel and other expenses. The First Lady's trip to South Africa alone was said to have cost taxpayers some $500,000.

With a dismal economy and 9.1 unemployment rate, some Americans have stopped going to public parks because of expensive parking fees while it seems like the President is hitting the links every couple of weeks. As mothers clip coupons to save a few bucks at the grocery store, Michelle Obama steps out confidently with a $1000 tote bag. With drivers worrying where to get the money to fill up their gas tanks so they could get to their workplace, the Obamas had no reservation in flying in two, separate gas-guzzling taxpayer-funded planes even if they're going to the same destination.

The First Family just ain't feeling our pain.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Remembering 9/11

                    1 There is a time for everything,
                       and a season for every activity under the heavens:
                    2 a time to be born and a time to die,
                      a time to plant and a time to uproot,
                    3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
                      a time to tear down and a time to build,
                    4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
                      a time to mourn and a time to dance,
                    5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
                      a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
                    6 a time to search and a time to give up,
                      a time to keep and a time to throw away,
                    7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
                      a time to be silent and a time to speak,
                    8 a time to love and a time to hate,
                      a time for war and a time for peace
                                              - Ecclesiastes 3:1 - 8

September 11. A day of remembrance, of lost souls and landmarks, when dark hearts traitorously stole America's carefree ways. But how does evil bring down a nation that is strong, resilient and united? That answers is: NEVER.

My prayers and best wishes and hopes to all whose lives have been touched by 9/11. You won. America won. We are still standing, prouder and stronger.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

America Needs Another Beer Summit

                               "Keep your tongue from evil and your lips
                                 from speaking deceit; turn away from evil
                                 and do good, seek peace and pursue it."
                                                                             - Psalm 34: 13 - 14

In his impassioned speech to introduce President Obama on Labor Day, Teamster President Jimmy Hoffa boldly claimed that the president's army (the union workers) is ready to march and urged their members to take the Tea Party politicians "son-of-a-b*****s" out. Upon taking the stage, the President returned the love and said he was proud of the man and the other union bosses gathered in that event.  When asked about the SOB comment, the White House opted to not repudiate it,  saying only that the union boss does not speak for the President. Over in Cincinnati, Ohio, VP Joe Biden added to the pile-on rallying the union crowds that "they are the only ones who can keep the barbarians at the gate!" Not too long ago, the vice president also called the Tea Partiers terrorists.

There is a troubling trend among our lawmakers in using inciting and violent language. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) proudly boasted that as far as she's concerned, "the Tea Party can go straight to hell." Rep. Andre Carson (D- Indiana) upped the verbal assault, saying in a town hall gathering that some members of the Congress affiliated with the Tea Party would like to "see you and me hanging on a tree" without so much as naming the offender or when it was said. This was the same man who claimed that the "n-word was hurled at Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), a civil rights movement icon, numerous times by Tea Party activists protesting on the eve of the Obamacare vote in March 2010. Andrew Breitbart, a conservative publisher, had offered to pay $100,000 to anyone who could provide proof of the hostile racial incident. The reward remains unclaimed to this day. In this age of modern technology when every cell phone is equipped with camera, not one soul could step forward with a single audio or video clip of the incident.

An ugly verbal back-and-forth is quite common in politics. Free speech  guarantees us that right, no matter how absurdly twisted or offensive the words are but it is one thing for activists or protestors, from either the Left or the Right, to use  incendiary and inflammatory rhetorics.  It's quite another when  our elected representatives are the ones doing the offensive name-calling and labeling a particular group of citizens "terrorists" or "Jim-Crows".  These elected politicians are supposed to represent all of us. No matter what their constituents' political leanings are , these lawmakers are supposed to be bridging the gap between the many factions and ideas of the people they represent. Joining - and even worse, leading the mud-slinging themselves is irresponsible, immature and un-American. Explosive language makes for good and sympathetic soundbites but it takes away the focus from the pressing issues our country is facing. It does nothing to solve any of our problems and it only divides Americans even farther apart. The race-baiting rhetorics are particularly disturbing. It's true that remnants of racism still exist up to this day but we cannot dismiss the great progress the country has made in repairing race relations. The biggest proof of that progress is the man sitting in the Oval Office right now.

Back in 2009, President Obama hosted a beer summit  at the White House to diffuse  tension that emanated from an arrest of a friend of the President's for disorderly conduct and Mr. Obama saying that the police had "acted stupidly"  without knowing the details of the incident. The Happy Hour brought about a civil resolution to the "misunderstanding" among the parties involved.

It seems like America needs another beer summit.  The question now is, with the President working on his reelection bid and rallying up his base amid sinking poll ratings , can we still look to the White House for leadership on calling a truce for all these unnecessary verbal hatefests?

Barack Obama's own speeches are peppered with hyperpartisanship but he is still the leader of this country. He has the power, the authority and responsibility to call a stop on these mad, over-the-top "rhetorical flourishes" before they get out of hand. We need to bring civility and sanity back to our national discourse. President Obama needs to get a handle on this. He only has to say the word.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Palinistas Anonymous: 12 Steps to Coming Out of the Closet

                        "Behold, You desire truth in the inner being;
                          make me therefore to know wisdom in my
                          inmost heart.: - Psalm 51:6

You know who you are: when your friends call Sarah Palin crazy names, you force out a quiet grunt or a tiny smile. You listen to them make fun of her son Trig as your blood boils inside in disgust. They tell crude jokes about her and twist her outstanding record of service into a warp of convoluted lies and you stand there speechless then go home screaming at yourself for not saying one word in defense of her. Their arrogance, the vitriol and loathing are just too intimidating. Why would you let yourself be caught helpless in that hateful web?

It's your best-kept secret: you scour the internet for all her interviews, you've ditched MSNBC for FOX. You have "Going Rogue" and "America By Heart" stashed under your bed. AGIA and ACES aren't Greek to you. You followed all the stops of the One Nation bus tour.  You were disgusted when the left blamed her for the Tucson shooting tragedy. You respect her. You admire the fighting "Sarracuda" in her. You root for her.

Admit it: you ARE a Palinista. It is time to come out of the closet. Here are twelve steps (thanks to Al-Anon for inspiration) to help you do just that.

1. 'Fess up. Barack Obama is not what you thought he was. You have been punked. Duped. As president , Obama is a disaster and a failure. But do not fret. You are not alone. 57% of Americans are feeling buyers' remorse. That HopeNChange thing just isn't working for our nation.

2. Wise up and give in. You worry about the direction America is going. We can turn things around. You know that there is a tested and trustworthy leader out there who can get back us on track - Sarah Palin.

3. Come out. This is the day that you openly express your support for her. You've examined her record. You've heard her speeches. Read all her Facebook posts and op-eds. Her words match her actions. You can have peace of mind that you're getting behind an honest politician - a rare breed in Washington.

4. Look around you. "Going Out of Business" signs on stores everywhere. Foreclosures in your neighborhood. Food stamps, even for the military families. Lines in the unemployment offices longer than last month's. Politicians calling Americans terrorists, Nazis, telling them to"go straight to hell", and our post-partisan president hasn't said a word to anyone to watch their words because he himself is a top player of the same crazy name-calling game. This isn't the Change that we had Hoped for in 2008.

5. Own up to it. Supporting Barack Obama in 2008 was a huge mistake. You are not alone on this. We let the media get away with their abdication of their journalistic duties to vet Obama the Candidate. They were his enablers, strongest allies and defenders. They crushed whomever they deemed a threat to his path to the White House - most notably Sarah Palin. Obama gives good speeches, and we let the tingles on our legs to go up to our heads and numb our brains and get trapped in the euphoria that the "planet will soon be healed."  He was the Messiah who would save us from all the ills that that cowboy Texan brought upon us. We ended up, instead, with a Pied Piper leading us to River Weser of decline when we could have gotten behind a frontierswoman who is a tough executive ready to be President even back in 2008 (just ask Huffington Post).

6. Get real. Accept the fact that you, along with 53% of us voters,  goofed big time in 2008 but 2012 gives us another shot. America is the original Comeback Kid. We can, and will, get of out of these national malaise and economic quagmire. There is a path forward and it is carved with two words: Sarah Palin.

7. Join her cause. Be one of her army of Davids. Pres. Obama is a Goliath of an opponent, with his bully pulpit and a 19-month headstart in fundraising for his reelection. No matter how the race shapes up, Sarah Palin will be facing Goliath and his four brothers (Obama's campaign team, the MSM, the Democrats and the entrenched GOP establishment)We need to be united and disciplined in our messages. Common sense solutions. Conservative values. Upholding the Constitution. These are what she stands for. Smaller government, lower taxes, free market, energy independence, strength in peace. These are what she is fighting for. Palin is just one person but with your support, America can roar back to greatness.

8. Make a list. Write down the names of people under three columns; (1) Those who you knew are openly pro-Palin.  (2) those whom you think could be persuaded to cross over to Palin's side and (3) those whom you knew are not on Palin's side.

9. Reach out to people on you list. Spend time with pro-Palin folks to stay motivated and updated so you can contibute constructively to her efforts. Talk to those folks who  have not decided yet who to support in 2012. Share with them Palin's  fight with the "corrupt bastards' club", Alaska's budget surplus, the $.5B of spending that she vetoed. Educate them about the real ANWR. As for those who are Obama supporters, it is no use to argue with them and get in their face. Their minds are probably glued shut to hear of Palin's true and real record. Leave them instead with questions that, hopefully, will get them to think and start second -guessing the charming and golden-tongued man from Chicago. Ask them: Obama blames everything on Bush, so can you name me three Bush screw-ups that Obama has fixed? (Economy? Unemployment? Debt? Obama's still 0-3). Or, after the $800B stimulus, why is the unemployment rate now at 9.1% compared to 7.6% when he first took office? Use the President's own words when you ask questions. Would he call himself "unpatriotic" now that he has surpassed the $4T in debt that Bush borrowed from "Bank of China" (debt that took Bush eight years to accumulate in contrast to Obama's just two and a half years in office)? Or, when he's "leading from behind", who exactly is following him?

10. Do not waver. Your Obama supporter-friends will try to intimidate you to silence. Never again take the media's reports at face value. Be confident that you are on the side of a woman with real-world experience and factual accomplishments, who delivered real-life results. Your faith in her is on solid ground.

11. Stay informed. Study up on her policies and positions on issues. Stay involved. Stay positive. It'll soon be Morning in America again.

12. Spread the message. Now that you've successfully done all eleven steps, go out there and seek out the other Palinistas still hiding in the closet. Help free 'em. Show 'em the way.