Archive for December 16th, 2008

President Bush Thinking of Border Agent Pardons?

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

Former U.S. Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean are in jail for shooting a drug runner in the bottom. He was running away from them and showed a weapon, so they fired on him. They got ten years for doing this.
There is still some facets of this situation that don’t make sense. The punishment doesn’t fit the crime. The fact that the witness against the border agents was caught red handed with a van full of drugs, but this evidence was not allowed in court. There are just many strange things about this case that don’t add up.
We should put pressure on President Bush to pardon these agents.

As president, George W. Bush has pardoned or commuted sentences for 32 drug dealers, 12 thieves, seven embezzlers, an arsonist, an armed bank robber and eight Thanksgiving turkeys, among others – but U.S. Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean remain in prison this Christmas, praying for their release.

“It’s pretty much salt in the wound,” Ramos’ wife, Monica, told WND. “But we have a lot of hope. My husband has quite a bit of faith, and we pray a lot. We are hoping the outpouring of support that we have here from people all over the nation is going to help us.”

Ramos and Compean are serving 11- and 12-year prison sentences, respectively, for shooting at a fleeing illegal alien drug dealer while he smuggled nearly 750 pounds of marijuana across the border. They were convicted of assault, discharge of a weapon in the commission of a crime of violence, tampering with an official proceeding and deprivation of civil rights.

U.S. Attorney
Johnny Sutton’s office gave the smuggler, Osbaldo Aldrete-Davila, full immunity from prosecution for agreeing to serve as the government’s star witness and testify against the border agents. A ruling, from the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of appeals, affirmed all convictions except for tampering with an official proceeding, which it vacated and remanded for resentencing.

Another lonely Christmas

For the Ramos and Compean families, this time of year is often very emotional without Ignacio and Jose.

“We have six children involved,” Monica said. “It’s really difficult – especially right now during this holiday season. Holidays for us are very depressing.”

She said the Ramos and Compean children, five boys and one girl, range in age from 2 to 15. Ramos’ imprisonment has drastically altered his three children’s lives.

“Four years later, the kids have really changed,” she said. “Their father was a huge part of their everyday routines, from little-league baseball to hunting. A lot of the traditions that we’ve had during our holidays have just changed. There is not much tradition anymore because there’s a big void in our family right now.”

Ramos’ children rarely get to see their father because Monica’s visits have been restricted to a single weekday, when the children are in school.

“My husband is supposed to be eligible for extra visits, and they have denied me extra visits with him,” she said.

Ramos was segregated from the general prison population after he was assaulted in a Yazoo City, Mass., federal penitentiary following an “America’s Most Wanted” episode that detailed the agents’ struggles.

“A couple of the inmates in general population on the night it aired recognized my husband on TV,” Ramos said. “They approached him shortly after the airing right when it was time to go to sleep, and five illegals just beat him severely.”

The agent suffered three herniated disks and a fractured shoulder from the assault.

Sign WND’s petition urging President Bush to free U.S. Border Patrol Agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean.

Four days later, representatives from Washington, including Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., and other congressional staffers, went to visit him.

“They were absolutely floored with what they saw happen to my husband,” his wife said.

Ramos served only four days in general population. He was placed in total solitary confinement after the attack, and within months he was relocated to the Phoenix Federal Correctional Institute so he could be closer to his family. The new prison was accommodating and allowed normal visitation privileges at first.

However, Monica said seeing her husband now “is like pulling teeth.”

“He is not supposed to be under the punitive consequences of segregation, even though he’s there,” she said. “He is supposed to be eligible for any of the provisions that would be for any general population.”

Read the rest of the article here.

India-Pakistan War a Real Concern

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

Lt. Colonel Bob Maginnis (USA-Ret.) recently published a commentary on HumanEvents.com. He believes the Indian government desperately seeks a diplomatic solution in the wake of the massacre of hundreds of innocent Indians by Islamists who belonged to the Pakistani-based terrorist organization Lashkar-e-Taiba, or LeT.

A captured LeT gunman admitted that he was trained in Pakistan by an army official. The Asia Times also reported that an element of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency allegedly approved the Mumbai attack. Maginnis says now there has been significant movement by both countries in preparation for some kind of military action.

“Clearly India has put its air force on alert in anticipation of, perhaps, a military action. We have seen some movement by the Pakistanis going after some of the leaders of LeT,” he explains. “We’ve seen them arrest people, attack base camps, and so forth.”

Maginnis adds that whatever the Pakistanis do may be insufficient. “I do believe that the political pressure on the Indian government [means] that they’re going to have to take some sort of retaliatory action because this is not the first in the last couple of years [of] Islamic attacks,” he contends. “There have been quite a few. So it is a worrisome trend.”

Original Link.

Blagojevich Arrest Delayed for Obama’s Benefit?

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

There is very little doubt this is the case. With that said though, I have no doubt that a Republican AG would have delayed prosecution of a person associated with McCain. That’s the way politics works…

Would Barack Obama be the president-elect if the Blagojevich arrest took place prior to the November election? That’s the question attorney and conservative commentator Debbie Schlussel is now asking.

Schlussel says federal sources with ties to Chicago tell her U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald had enough evidence to prosecute Blagojevich in June, but decided to wait until after the election to charge him so as not to hurt Barack Obama’s White House chances. Schlussel contends Fitzgerald’s alleged decision to postpone the arrest of Blagojevich was inappropriate.

“[W]e all know that he went after Lewis ‘Scooter’ Libby, even though Libby was not the source of the leak for Valerie Plame — and yet he didn’t after the source of the leak, Richard Armitage,” she points out. “Here [with the Blagojevich scandal] we have a different case of his selective justice, where he waited.”

Original Link.

“A Time For Prayer” by Todd Strandberg

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

Last week, Terry and I traveled to Dallas to attend the 2008 Pre-Trib Study Group, a conference made up of prophecy scholars who gather to present papers that mostly defend the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine. Joel Rosenberg was this year’s special speaker, and despite the economic hardship this year, we had a record crowd.

Because the material is of a very academic nature, I spend most of my time meeting with other members and doing three video interviews with people involved in other end-time ministries. During the two-and-a-half-day meeting, I only attended one two-hour lecture. That was one more than my partner Terry.

There is one part of the gathering that I always attend, however: the briefing on current events that’s given by four speakers on the second night of each year’s conference. Since I first joined the conference back in the late ’90s, I’ve never heard a current events presentation with such a dark outlook on the future.

What makes 2009 such an ominous year are all the potential flash points. I’ve never seen a time marked by so much activity related to Bible prophecy. Here is a list of the main ones:

The threat of a major terrorist attack
The social impact of the worldwide economic meltdown
The drive towards the establishment of the global government
Russia becoming more like the old Soviet Union
Iran trying to develop an atomic bomb
Israel being threatened by several of its neighbors
America making a sharp political turn to the left

With so much activity taking place today, you would think that prophecy-minded believers would be very busy getting ready for the Lord’s return. I’ve noticed that the abundance of prophetic activity has had the opposite effect on Christians: Most seem to be doing nothing. It’s rather ironic that apathy is so prevalent; Jesus said that it would be a major sign of the end times.

“Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh” (Mat. 24:44).

Right now, everyone seems to be watching for something big to happen. We might soon witness a major war in the Middle East, or the occurrence of some other calamity. Because the rapture could easily be the next event on God’s calendar, I would hate to have it occur while I was doing nothing.

There is no guarantee that Christians will be able to stand by as passive spectators. If our Lord tarries, hardship could be ahead as the current economic recession turns into a depression. As the world becomes more wicked, we may also find our religious freedoms soon coming under pressure.

Rather than just waiting around to see what happens, all Christians have the opportunity to take an active role in hastening our Lord’s advent. Jesus Christ specifically told us to pray for His return. “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Mat. 6:9, 10).

Now that 2000 years have passed and all the signs point to the nearness of the last days, our prayers have the power to be more meaningful, more important, and more necessary than ever. God is still in control the prophetic time clock, but He will certainly listen to the voices of His children if they join together to call on Him.

I don’t know why any believer wouldn’t be crying out in prayer to “hasten the coming of the day of God” (2 Pet. 3:12). For many years, I’ve felt like a stranger in this land. Lately, I feel like Lot must have felt as he lived amongst the Sodomites. Many non-believers email each day, wishing I would indeed be raptured away, so my hope is that they soon get their wish.

I ask every child of God reading this week’s Nearing Midnight Update to spend sometime this week praying for the Lord’s soon return. At this late hour, the triggering point for the blessed hope may just require a few more Christians to say “Even so, come, Lord Jesus” (Rev. 22:20).

—Todd

Original Link.

School Board Reinstates Rudolph, Santa

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

Every year I read about this…

“The objecting parent was upset about the words “Christmas” and “Santa” in the song, feeling that they carried religious overtones.”

And every year I have to make the same comment…

Santa Claus is NOT in the Bible!!

For those of you who believe he is, please, please, please get it through your thick skulls that he is not in the Bible!!

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was almost grounded at Murrayville Elementary School this week after a parent complained about the classic Christmas song’s inclusion in her daughter’s upcoming kindergarten concert.

The objecting parent was upset about the words “Christmas” and “Santa” in the song, feeling that they carried religious overtones.

That prompted the song to be pulled from the upcoming holiday concert, which in turn upset more parents.

…“They have clearly decided that any other religion or custom is not important,” the objecting parent said after learning about the reversal on “Rudolph.” She asked that her name not be published, to shield her daughter’s identity.

The mother, who is Jewish, said she was trying to have a Hanukkah song added to the musical lineup but had not received a return phone call about it from school officials by mid-afternoon Friday.

…Sean Dwyer, whose daughter is also in the kindergarten class, had complained Friday morning about Rudolph getting muzzled.

Friday afternoon he said he thought school officials had made the right call by reinstating the popular Christmas song.

“It wasn’t my point in the beginning whether it was about religion or not,” Dwyer said. “The children have been learning this for weeks, and some person was trying to push their own personal feeling and agenda for this for their own child alone, and you just don’t do that.”

But until late Friday morning, Rudolph wasn’t going anywhere.

Murrayville Principal Julie Duclos said the school decided to pull the song after the parent complained “to make sure that we were actually paying attention to everybody’s interest, that we were not choosing somebody’s interest over another.”

“If we had enough time in the PTA program to sing a song for every single interest and value system, then we could do it,” she said. “But when you can’t do that, you go to universal values that are agreed on by every faith, every denomination. We wouldn’t want to leave anybody out.”

Original Link.