5 Lessons From the Attack on Chick-fil-A

5 Lessons From the Attack on Chick-fil-A

ROBERT MACPHERSON/AFP/Getty Images

‘Take a hike and take your intolerance with you.’ How’s that for irony?

Examples of mainstream America’s hatred of God and the Bible abound, but this has to be one of the worst to date.

A ridiculous brouhaha has developed over an innocuous article in the Baptist Press two weeks ago. It was a feature on the president of fast food chain Chick-fil-A, and how he lets his faith guide his business decisions, like closing his stores on Sundays. The article mentioned opposition the company has faced for its support of traditional family. “Well, guilty as charged,” Dan Cathy responded. “We are very much supportive of the family—the biblical definition of the family unit. … We want to do anything we possibly can to strengthen families. … We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles.”

For those statements, Mr. Cathy was absolutely pilloried.

Protesters hold signs and shout slogans outside a Chick-fil-A food truck in Washington on July 26. (ROBERT MACPHERSON/AFP/Getty Images)

The mayor of Boston threatened to deny Chick-fil-A licenses to operate in his city. Muppets creator Jim Henson Co., which was making toys for kids’ meals, severed ties with the restaurant. A Chicago alderman announced he would block the company from opening a new store in his ward. Chicago’s mayor agreed, saying, “Chick-fil-A values are not Chicago values.” San Francisco’s mayor warned the company not to open a restaurant there. A Philadelphia councilman sent a letter to Dan Cathy telling his company to “take a hike and take your intolerance with you.” A New York councilman threatened to withhold a business permit until Chick-fil-A broke ties with groups that oppose same-sex marriage. Celebrities issued public condemnations, many of them loaded with obscenities. Protesters stood outside stores urging customers to boycott. News organizations characterized Cathy’s pro-family comments as “anti-gay.” A YouGov poll showed that public perception of his company has taken a massive hit in the last two weeks.

Here are five lessons to take from this appalling, embarrassing story.

1) Behold the liberal definition of “tolerance.”

Chick-fil-A has never been accused of discriminating against homosexuals in its hiring, its service or other business practices. These folks want to shut it down for its president’s personal beliefs.

To these people, you’re only “open minded” if you agree with them. And “tolerance” demands extreme intolerance of alternative views. Welcome to America 2012.

2) This shows the spectacular arrogance of the liberal left.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s rant continued, “If you’re gonna be part of the Chicago community, you should reflect Chicago values.” Since when does a city’s mayor decide what “values” must be held by the people who live there?

The fact is, they don’t, they can’t—and they know it. Legally, city officials cannot impose a religious test on people who want to open a business. But these officials don’t care. They want to intimidate and bully people. And they score plenty of political points from their liberal supporters when they do.

3) We are looking at hypocrisy on an epic scale.

Are the Chick-fil-A bashers really so opposed to those who don’t support same-sex “marriage”? Then why single out one business? Surely there are other business owners who harbor a similar belief; after all, it’s not that unusual. The numbers are falling, but a recent Pew poll said 44 percent of Americans still oppose same-sex “marriage.” That would be somewhere in the neighborhood of 137 million people in this country. Are none of them welcome in Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Philadelphia, New York? Or is it just that they’re not welcome to start businesses there?

Where is the condemnation of businesses owned by Muslims whose religion informs their opposition to homosexuality?

Mayor Emanuel, in fact, is partnering with Louis Farrakhan to reduce homicides in Chicago. The Nation of Islam leader, besides being famously anti-Semitic, also opposes same-sex unions; just two months ago, Farrakhan blasted President Obama for endorsing homosexual “marriage”—with explicit anti-homosexual language miles beyond Cathy’s general pro-family remark. When will the mayor ostracize Farrakhan for not holding “Chicago values”?

For that matter, when did he ever say a word of criticism against President Obama, who opposed homosexual marriage while Emanuel served as his chief of staff for nearly two years?

4) Politically correct “diversity” includes practically all groups but one.

The fact is, there is really only one group targeted by these nasty, sanctimonious attacks. The politically correct version of “diversity” happily includes people of all races and religions—even those that practice forced marriage, polygamy, sending their children on suicide bombing missions, what have you—except one. This group must be shunned. The message to them: “Take a hike, and take your intolerance with you.”

Who are they? Bible believers.

Nobody inspires vitriol, spite and bigotry like someone who actually lets Scripture govern his beliefs. There’s a reason for that—and it’s in the Bible.

5) We are witnessing head-spinning, lightning-fast social change.

Marriage is the single most enduring institution in human civilization. It makes sense. There is simply no better way to ensure that children grow up in a stable environment than for them to be raised by the two individuals who biologically produced them, within an exclusive, lifelong relationship. Mankind—and not just Bible-believers—has been defining marriage as being between a man and a woman for thousands of years.

Quite suddenly, in the United States, it is a minority position. This past May, the nation’s president recognized that support for same-sex “marriage” had become politically acceptable enough to publicly embrace. Just weeks later, major politicians saw a businessman who puts “biblical definition” in front of family and targeted him for public flogging. Now the Democratic Party is considering support for same-sex “marriage” as part of its official party platform.

It is absolutely extraordinary how rapid this revolutionary change has been.

“We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles.” It was just a couple weeks ago that an unsuspecting, family-loving businessman uttered those words. Who knew just how out of step he was?

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How the Syrian Crisis Will End

How the Syrian Crisis Will End

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The eyes of the world are fixed on this explosive hot spot. Bashar Assad will be ousted shortly—but then what? You can actually know the outcome!
From the September 2012 Trumpet Print Edition

Syria is at war. That country has been experiencing a slowly unfolding civil war for 17 months and counting. More than 10,000 people have already been killed. The Syrian people are intensifying their protests against President Bashar Assad’s government, and the government is fighting back with brutal force. Thousands are dying, and tens of thousands are fleeing the country. Other countries have been pressuring Assad to step down for over a year, and it looks like his regime is reaching the breaking point.

But there is something much more significant happening in Syria than just another civil war.

Many nations want to see Assad gone, but nobody knows what kind of government would emerge to replace him. The “Arab Spring” has destabilized much of the Middle East and resulted in a range of outcomes and a dangerous level of volatility. Most of the countries involved have lurched toward radicalism.

World leaders and news commentators cannot tell you in advance where this crisis will lead. But you can know Syria’s future if you read what we have been writing, based on the Bible, for the past 70 years.

What we are seeing right now in Syria is a major biblical prophecy in the process of being fulfilled! What happens in Syria will lead to mighty nations changing course and the foundations of this world being shaken!

Did you know that the book of Psalms prophesies the future of Syria? This nation is an important part of the balance of power in the Middle East, and Psalm 83 prophesies that there is about to be a dramatic, violent shift in Syria’s alliances. This will affect many nations, and ultimately lead to an all-out war breaking out all over the Earth!

This prophecy reveals the outcome of the uprising in Syria. It also exposes the key involvement of a major outside nation—something we can already see developing.

Keep Your Eye on Germany

Right now, Syria is Iran’s most important regional ally. But that is about to change.

On April 16, German-Foreign-Policy.com cited a German government adviser who said that in the event of military intervention in Syria, “German participation should be assured.”

Germany may send forces into Syria. This may seem strange, considering that when the Libyan revolution broke out last year, Germany did not want to get involved. Why is it getting more involved now?

Germany has a global strategy, and what is occurring in Syria fits into that strategy perfectly.

In April, Germany joined the United States, Saudi Arabia and several other Gulf states at a gathering in Turkey to discuss options for dealing with Syria’s revolution. Commenting on this meeting, Associated Press noted that there was a “shift toward military options that might oust Syrian President Bashar Assad.”

Here is the critical thing to realize: One of Germany’s primary objectives in this region is to develop an axis with Middle Eastern states that oppose Iran. Germany has been stepping up its political involvement and its financial and military investment in Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states, Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan. It has formed solid trade relationships with virtually all these countries, covering many industries from telecommunications to the military.

For Germany, Syria’s revolution isn’t about a humanitarian crisis at all. It’s about geopolitics and how Berlin can aggressively advance its strategic interests in the Middle East!

America has been too weak to tame Iran and neutralize its allies, but Germany is moving in and filling that power vacuum. The whole world ought to be watching what Germany is doing in the Middle East.

Most people are blind to what is going on in Syria, but we have been showing you for 70 years that the Bible prophesies the future—not only for Syria, but for the whole region and the whole world.

Biblical prophecy reveals that, very soon,Syria will no longer align with Iran.It also shows that Germany will help cause this split.

A Prophesied Alliance

Psalm 83 discusses a multi-nation Middle Eastern confederation that will ally with Germany. This alliance has never happened in history. All of the Bible commentaries will tell you that. But it is happening now. It takes time to build a confederation like that, and it is now well underway.

Immediately before that prophecy in Psalm 83 comes to complete fulfillment, another prophecy will take place. It is found in Daniel 11:40: “And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over.”

This prophecy involves the same geography: The context shows you that it occurs right in the Middle East and involves some of the same countries. The “king of the north” is Germany, and the “king of the south” is Iran. Right now, Iran is filling the news with its aggressive support for terrorism and nuclear development, and it appears unstoppable. The Trumpet has emphasized how Iran is having its way in many countries and is dominating the region. But Daniel here describes where these current tensions are leading: Germany will utterly wipe Iran out.

Daniel 11:40 will unfold just before Psalm 83 is totally fulfilled. Germany and Iran will ignite a spectacular military clash. The German superpower will crush the “king of the south.” Then the Arab nations listed in Psalm 83 will ally with Germany.

Daniel 11 shows that the warring does not stop there. Verse 44 talks about “tidings out of the east.” That refers to Russia and China entering into the fray, expanding this world war.

That’s right: These events actually mark the beginning of World War iii! That is how important this prophecy is!

Some people disregard this prophecy, saying it is just some obscure passage in the Psalms. But God inspired it! Christ said in Matthew 4:4 that we are to live by every word of God.

We need to prove these things to ourselves. God will help us if we are willing, but we have to work at it and push ourselves.

Crafty Counsel

Read the prophecy in Psalm 83: “Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, O God. For, lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head. They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones” (verses 1-3).

This foretells of an alliance that will take crafty counsel against God’s people, which is referring to Israel. These verses are talking about the modern descendants of the 12 tribes of biblical Israel. Do you know who those are? The modern Jewish state of Israel is only one of those tribes—Judah.

In biblical prophecy, “Israel” refers especially to the birthright nations that descended from Joseph: Ephraim and Manasseh. Those descendants are Britain and the United States. Other prophecies show that the fates of these three major nations of Israel—the U.S., Britain, and the Jewish nation—are all aligned. Where Psalm 83 says this alliance is “against thy people,” it means Germany and its Middle Eastern allies are targeting the Americans, the British and the Jews in the Middle East.

But notice: There is also a plot against God’s “hidden ones,” which other translations render as treasured or sheltered ones. This refers to God’s faithful people, spiritual Israel, His true Church. They are embedded right in the midst of all these prophecies to ensure God has somebody He can use to reveal to the world His message about what is happening!

You are reading that message right now!

God uses His people to show the world what is going to happen before it happens. He uses them to proclaim a message of how these catastrophes could be avoided. Sadly, the world pays them little attention, and it will continue to ignore God’s message until circumstances get a lot more horrific.

The evil purpose of this alliance is revealed in verse 4: “They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance.”

The president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has publicly stated that Iran wants to wipe Israel off the map. What is revealed in Psalm 83 is an even more diabolical plot by a different alliance: They want to obliterate even thenameof Israel—forever!

“For they have consulted together with one consent: they are confederate against thee,” the prophecy continues. Then it lists which peoples comprise the alliance: “The tabernacles of Edom, and the Ishmaelites of Moab, and the Hagarenes; Gebal, and Ammon, and Amalek; the Philistines with the inhabitants of Tyre; Assur also is joined with them: they have holpen the children of Lot. Selah.”

You must know who the modern descendants of these peoples are in order to understand just how timely and relevant this prophecy is: “Edom” is Turkey; “the Ishmaelites” are Saudi Arabia; “Moab” and “Ammon” both refer to Jordan; “Gebal” is Lebanon. The Hagarenes anciently dwelt in the land known today as Syria.

The only one listed here that lies outside the region is “Assur,” which is Germany. Germany is the power behind this alliance! In principle, this is how Germany started World War i and World War ii. (Request our booklet Germany and the Holy Roman Empire for more information.) It is using the same old modus operandi.

Right now, Bashar Assad’s Syria is closely allied with Iran—but this prophecy shows that these two nations are about to split. This will have a domino effect on other nations. These events will really shake this world and dramatically alter the course of history!

Dramatic Changes Ahead

This prophecy in Psalm 83 reveals a tremendous amount about what we can expect to see in the time ahead—including some dramatic changes!

Gebal, modern-day Lebanon, is home today to the Iranian terrorist puppet Hezbollah. We can expect it to also switch allegiance!

Even now Germany has naval ships just off the coast of Lebanon. Why should it be so concerned about what’s happening in that part of the world? It is all part of Germany’s global strategy.

This prophecy also reveals that the Philistines are with the inhabitants of Tyre. Get a map and you will see that Tyre is in southern Lebanon, the stronghold of the Hezbollah terrorists. Their alliance with Iran is about to be broken, and Germany will be the main cause.

The Philistines—or the Palestinians of Gaza and even those in the West Bank—are going to shift their alliance to Germany as well.

Iran has recently led Hezbollah and the Palestinians in their terrorist activities. They all share some common enemies—especially America and Israel. But they have some different views in religion and politics, which could cause Hezbollah and the Palestinians to ally themselves with Germany.

Also, there may soon be some significant power shifts in Lebanon and Gaza.

Edom, or Esau, is Turkey. Turkey has also been allied with Iran, but it too is going to side with Germany in the future! Why? Because it disagrees with what Iran is doing in Syria! While Iran supports the Assad regime, Turkey supports the rebels.

Look at the changes that are coming! This is not something we can take lightly. This is world news told to you ahead of time! Just watch—keep track of this. See if these exact events don’t happen. Watch Germany, and watch the Middle East, and see if this prophecy doesn’t come to pass exactly as the Bible says it will.

This is an end-time prophecy! Nothing has ever happened like this in history before. “History transmits no record of the national crisis when the nations enumerated in this Psalm formed a league to wipe out Israel,” writes the Anchor Bible Commentary. Lange’s Commentary also points out, “The 10 nations, who are here enumerated as being combined against Israel, are never mentioned elsewhere as enemies allied at the same time and for the purpose of annihilating Israel.”

To most people in this world, this means very little. But God prophesied all of it! He spelled it out so that if we just study our Bible, we can understand it all. We must understand it! God has His sheltered ones there, protecting them, and they understand it.

Watch for a Massive Shift

These verses foretell a massive shift in alliances among the nations of the Middle East! Events are about to stagger the imagination of many authorities in this world! And God prophesied it all thousands of years ago.

Should we believe in the Old Testament? We should if we want to understand end-time Bible prophecy. The Psalms is the only book in the Bible that contains this prophecy. Without Psalm 83, there would be no way to understand these particular events until well after they had snapped into place.

This is a most exciting and wonderful prophecy—yet the world understands almost nothing about it. People should understand, because this message has been publicized for them to see for about 70 years by the Trumpet and by Herbert W. Armstrong!

Where does this Psalm 83 union lead? It leads to mankind being plunged into the Great Tribulation for 2½ years, and then into the Day of the Lord for a year. But at the conclusion of the Day of the Lord, Jesus Christ is going to return to this Earth and put down all the rebellion against Him. Finally, He will conquer the nations and bring us peace and joy and happiness forever!

That is where today’s events in Syria are ultimately heading. So make sure you watch Syria, and make sure you watch Bible prophecy!

Goliath Dust Storms Slam Arizona

Goliath Dust Storms Slam Arizona

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Once considered to be once-in-100-year events, giant dust storms are pounding the U.S. state of Arizona. In a summer of excessive heat and extreme drought, this is not good news.

Since June, five dust storms have plagued Arizona’s famous valley area. On July 29, Phoenix looked more like Saharan Africa than the well-manicured American Southwest. A massive dust cloud, referred to as a haboob—an Arabic word meaning “strong wind”—blanketed the metropolitan area. The cloud was 2,000 feet tall and nearly 60 miles wide.

Although not the largest dust storm to hit the area, tree limbs and power poles were snapped, causing 9,000 homes to lose power. The Sky Harbor Airport was shut down for 20 minutes.

These huge dust storms form during the monsoon season that runs from June until the end of September. They are so destructive because of the fine dust particles that manage to permeate everywhere during the storm.

According to experts, these storms are becoming more frequent. It is not just the big storms that pose problems. Phoenix experienced three dust storms in a row the last week of July—which is considered very rare. USA Today stated: “This means more deadly accidents, more harmful pollution and more health problems for people breathing in the irritating dust particles.”

The potential health threats from the storms are far more serious than just breathing in irritating dust particles. The fine dust can carry a poisonous mix of fungi, heavy metals from pollution, fertilizers, stockyard fecal matter, chemicals and bacteria, which can cause cardiovascular disease, eye diseases and other illnesses such as valley fever.

Valley fever, caused by the Coccidioides fungus present in desert soil, can be fatal. Valley fever is contracted when desert soil is thrown into the air and breathed in. Arizona has 70 percent of the valley fever cases reported nationally. The cases of valley fever in Arizona were up by 36 percent in Arizona between 2010 and 2011.

It was in July 2011 that the largest dust storm ever observed hit the Phoenix area. Medical experts believe that the advance of the huge dust storms in 2011 could be one of the causes for the increase in cases of valley fever.

Other dangers associated with these dust storms are the traffic accidents that result from the blinding conditions of the blowing dust. Between the period of 2001 through 2005, dust storms caused 44 deaths in 2,323 traffic accidents in New Mexico and 15 deaths in 614 accidents in Arizona.

Experts say that because of excessive heat and dry conditions, residents in Arizona’s valley area can expect more dust storms.

For more information on other problems Americans are facing because of the drought of 2012, be sure to read columnist Brad Macdonald’s article “The Global Consequences of America’s Drought.”

Stanley Rader’s Reflections on Herbert W. Armstrong

Stanley Rader’s Reflections on Herbert W. Armstrong

Trumpet

General counsel to ambassador for world peace recounts miraculous favor afforded the deliverer of God’s gospel.

Have you ever met an emperor, king, queen, president, prime minister, ambassador or diplomat? The answer for most is probably no.

The ancient Prophet Jeremiah, Daniel and the Apostle Paul were called of God to “bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel” (Acts 9:15).

“And now, kings, presidents, prime ministers and leaders of many nations are inviting me,” Herbert Armstrong reminded co-workers Sept. 24, 1973, amid a Southeast Asian trip.

During the decade of the 1970s, Stanley Rader served as general counsel to Mr. Armstrong and almost always accompanied him hundreds of days per year as he fulfilled the Matthew 24:14 witness, preaching the good news of the coming Kingdom of God.

During that decade, Mr. Rader was instrumental in coordinating not only meetings with world leaders, but also the follow-up humanitarian projects that were coordinated between leaders, their national governments and the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation.

In his book Against the Gates of Hell, Rader recalled the astounding exploits and favor afforded God’s representative of His gospel, citing him as an “ambassador of world peace.”

As general counsel, Rader was prime witness to the hospitality, honor and respect world leaders gave Mr. Armstrong. In the process, he obtained a most unique vantage point in observing Herbert Armstrong in action. This is worthy of our recall and consideration.

After referring to the gospel “announcement” brought by Mr. Armstrong to global leaders, Rader identified two additional supports in association with this primary commission given to God’s true Church.

“It may seem surprising that the doors of imperial palaces and official residences are opened wide for a smiling, white-haired man,” he wrote.

Yet there are sound reasons why.First, to establish and develop programs that are meaningful, relevant, and important to each nation we visit and to the people involved, so that they may live fuller and more abundant lives.And second, to create a better understanding between people to further the cause of world peace.National leaders have read about, and often seen for themselves, the throngs surging to hear him and the ovations he has received.

He cited reports of the trust and “confidence other leaders have placed in him,” the intelligence such elite shapers of governments willingly gave to him, along with his track record as “builder of bridges between nations.”

They feel free to discuss their most pressing international and domestic problems with him in intimate detail. I have had the honor of attending many of these conferences and have noted the depth of sincerity with which he has been greeted, the deference paid to him, the close attention given by state heads to his counsel.

Mr. Rader recalled the numerous instances of meetings set for only a few minutes extended into anywhere up to 30, 60 or 90 minutes, “while important personages cooled their heels in antechambers.”

He observed Mr. Armstrong had “found a certain advantage in his status as an unofficial ambassador that no credentialed envoy could enjoy.”

“Mr. Armstrong has been asked to be the bearer of personal messages from one leader to another, messages that could not be sent over usual diplomatic channels,” Rader wrote.

He concluded his reflections of the man he called “ambassador for world peace” by writing, “Few men in world history have garnered so many tributes from so many world leaders.”

The tragedy for Stanley Rader was his eventual removal as general counsel by Mr. Armstrong and his departure from the church which he had served administratively for a long period and even briefly as an evangelist. He ultimately rejected the very gospel message of God, which he had so often personally witnessed being delivered personally by Mr. Armstrong at world capitals in the presence of national dignitaries.

In like manner, after Mr. Armstrong’s death, tens of thousands would eventually walk away from God, ceasing their support for Christ’s gospel commission and rejecting the doctrines of the true Church, refusing to honor the legacy of his life’s work.

A quarter of a century has elapsed since numerous requests were made in eulogies by world leaders at the time of his death expressing the hope that the legacy and work of Mr. Armstrong be continued. Should we not be very thankful for Gerald Flurry and his faithful assistant, the late John Amos, for their boldness, dogged faith and courage in standing up to those who sought to destroy that legacy, when they faced Mr. Armstrong’s opponents down, just four years after his death? They stepped out in faith to continue the work in the spirit of that legacy.

For a recounting of those events that led to this legacy being passed from the original institution to which it was gifted, request Malachi’s Message from this website.

For 22 years, our editor in chief has battled opposition from offshoots of the church that Mr. Armstrong once led. Our book Raising the Ruins reveals more of the titanic six-year legal battle that ensued with the main antagonist. The resultant victory over that antagonist enables you to daily enjoy and partake of the bountiful fruits of Mr. Armstrong’s writings in the spirit of his perpetuated legacy.

The time is fast approaching for the returning Jesus Christ to liberate society from its ignorance of the incredible human potential.

What more can you do in support of spreading the great gospel message of hope that is now being prophesied again to a world held captive in mass ignorance of its future?

The time for you to act to gain the knowledge of that which leads to this great event and to be directly involved in supporting the work that freely shares that knowledge with the general public is fast running out.

Consider your course of action carefully—go to God, pray for guidance, and act in faith. Remember, we are all accountable for the knowledge we are given. It is of no value unless acted upon!

Thankfully there have remained a few thousand who remember, value and fight to uphold Herbert Armstrong’s legacy, who work to revive it. They especially work so that others who once possessed this knowledge can recall it in the light of the present-day fulfillment of so many Bible prophecies that Herbert Armstrong brought to light during his long and fruitful ministry.

That history of the spectacular, miraculous work and unique gospel message that reached the world’s leading minds through Herbert Armstrong is undeniable.

In the most simple of terms, that message was to trump the soul-destroying worldly way of get with the godly way of give in the lives of those who, in Herbert Armstrong’s terms, truly “got it!”

You thought the housing crisis was over

The American Spectator’s William Tucker reports that the Community Reinvestment Act is back, as if 2008 never happened. It’s another fine example of how political ideology and corruption has taken over Washington. Tucker writes:

Do you remember that thing about how the banks wouldn’t lend to blacks and Hispanics because they were racists? And do you remember how they passed the Community Reinvestment Act so that banks were forced to reduce down payments practically to zero and lend to a lot of people they knew were bad credit risks? And do you remember how Wall Street bundled all these risky subprime mortgages and sold them to investors around the world so that when it became clear that those people weren’t going to be able to pay their mortgages banks everywhere were left holding the bag and all five of the Wall Street investment houses either went under or had to be bailed out by the federal government? …And do you remember how all this cost the government close to a trillion dollars and put the whole economy in a hole that we really haven’t begun to dig ourselves out of yet?

As Tucker reports, the whole thing is about to happen again. The government is starting a “new” program to force banks to lend to low-credit-rated blacks and Hispanics. If banks don’t they will be hit with fines.

More astoundingly, according to Tucker, politicians are trying to force credit rating agencies to change their reporting standards to boost the scores of poor people of non-white lineage. This will give the banks the cover they need to give minorities mortgages even though they are a bad credit risk. Tucker continues:

[T]he Consumer Finance Protection Bureau has just announced that it is adopting a 20-age “Policy Statement on Discrimination in Lending” …. Part of the policy statement reads, “Applying different lending standards or offering different levels of assistance to applicants who are members of a protected [i.e., minority] class is permissible in some circumstances. Providing different treatment to applicants to address past discrimination would be permissible if done in response to a court order.”

According to Tucker, the new Consumer Finance Protection Bureau rules also mean that banks will no longer be able to turn down minorities from getting mortgages just because they are receiving public assistance such as unemployment benefits, welfare payments or food stamps!

Have politicians lost their minds?

Conclusion:

Politicians have not lost their minds. They know exactly what they are doing. It is politics as usual, with other people’s money. These new measures, if enforced, may help temporarily reflate the housing market in some areas, especially inner cities where there is a high density of minorities. However, these policies also will increase the debt loads of people who cannot handle the debt. It will also drive up the housing costs for people who can least afford it—the minorities the politicians are supposedly trying to help. Most dangerously, these policies may set the stage for another financial crisis—and this time America may not have enough money to bail out the banks.

Hezbollah Releases Footage of 2006 Abduction

JERUSALEM—Six years ago, Hezbollah guerrillas crossed into Israel from Lebanon and ambushed two armored Humvees on patrol in northern Israel, killing eight idf soldiers and taking two others hostage. The cross-border raid ended up triggering the Second Lebanon War.

This week, Hezbollah released amateur video footage of the attack that shows Hezbollah militants ambushing the idf convoy on Israeli soil.

The question is, with northern Israel relatively quiet over the past six years, why did Hezbollah decide to release the video now?

Yesterday, the Independent of London made a few interesting observations: “Analysts in Israel and Lebanon suggested the timing of the video release had less to do with heightened tensions between the Shia Muslim guerrilla group and Israel than with the overshadowing of Lebanese domestic politics by the Syrian civil war.” So this may have more to do with Hezbollah’s increasingly shaky position in Lebanon.

“Hezbollah has come under increasing pressure ahead of Lebanese elections scheduled for next summer from anti-Syria politicians denouncing the group’s broad support for—and partial dependence on—the Syrian regime during its violent suppression of the 16-month uprising,” the Independent continued.

Some analysts have suggested that the Hezbollah video release is an attempt to rally support from the Lebanese people by demonizing Israel. Rather than showing Hezbollah’s strength, however, this video and the timing of its release is another sign of Hezbollah’s desperate position with Bashar al Assad’s regime in danger of collapsing in Syria.

As we reported last week, Syria—a major Hezbollah supporter—has long been a major player in Lebanese politics. Hezbollah knows that if Syria breaks its alliance with Iran, Lebanon may well follow. And if that happens, Hezbollah will be left on the outside looking in.

For more on this, watch the update we posted last week: “When Syria Goes, What Happens to Hezbollah?