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'Sick to my guts...'

I usually don't make posts like this because I'm way outta my element. But I am sick of all of the hype I see in the media. The whole one sided take on journalism. Each program has an agenda. As my wife says, 'You find what you're looking for'. It would absolutely kill a mainstream media person like Olbermann to say President Bush has done something good and right. Likewise it would kill a 'talk radio' media person like Limbaugh to say that Senator Clinton or Senator Obama did something good and right. We are a country shown the extremes. Most of the mainstream media are such Bush haters, that's right I stated 'haters', that they would actually explode if they had to report on the good that he has done. Likewise 'Fox' news and talk radio hosts are such Democrat haters that they, too, would explode if they had to report on any good that they have done. 'Fair and balanced' my butt! Everyone, everyone has their agenda. It is so true that we find what we are looking for. The mainstream media seems to only report on the stuff that pushes their anti-Bush, anti-Republican agenda. Likewise, talk radio and the like seems to only report on the stuff that pushes their anti-Hilary, anti-Democratic agenda.

And I'm so sick to my guts of it.

I try and listen to both sides of the story but it is so hard to listen through all the second-grade name calling and hype. No one is really talking about anything. Both sides are only showing and pushing the extreme of the opposing view. A good example of this is when I saw a small bit of Bill Maher the other night. I usually don't watch his program because of this very issue but we were up late and channel surfing. Mos Def was one of the guests. He made the statement (and this is paraphrased, you can read the transcript here), 'Everybody wants to be America's friend. And America goes to these places and kills people!' To which Bill replied, 'Islam spread through the sword. Have you read your history?'

'Yes.'

'Then you know for a hundred years the Muslims almost conquered the whole known world and were killing anyone who would not convert to their faith.'

'That's a very convenient revision of history.'

'Really? So, Muslims are better people?'

This is exactly what I'm talking about. One extreme or the other. You are either a murdering, religious, fanatical prude or an open-minded, free-thinking, humanist philanthropist. This is such crap!

The answer is in the middle somewhere where we all live. But that position will not win an election. That position will not even get you on TV or the radio. Nope. People like the dark contrast between the 'evil' Republicans and the 'good' Democrats or the 'good' Republicans and the 'evil' Democrats. 'They (fill in your nemesis here) only want to take away your rights!'

It seems that you can't be a Republican unless you are for guns, war, low taxes, and small government. And you can't be a Democrat unless you are for anti-guns, no war, high taxes and big government. But that is the extreme in both parties. A lot of people I know are all for low taxes and small government but at the same time they don't like guns or war.

Something that is going to go by the wayside, i.e., I'm sure that the mainstream media won't comment on it or add it to a Countdown rant, is Senator Clinton was asked if she would bring the troops home during her first year of being president. Her (paraphased) answer? 'We don't know what will be happing then. We don't know how involved Iran will be. We don't know what Iraq will be like. Etc.' What? She is demanding that we bring our troops home now but sidesteps the issue if she were president?!? 'This is George Bush's war' was her cry not too long ago. Now she doesn't want to make a stand to say she will bring the troops home if she's elected?

And don't even get me started on the whole General Petraeus thing. I have seen where one side is saying that President Bush is the one who has desecrated the General and the other side is pointing out that it was the Democrats that wanted the report in the first place but now don't like the outcome. I hate that we have made the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people political.

Where is the voice of the people? Or, is there really just a few of us that are actually in the dreaded (and hated) middle? Maybe I'm naive and the country really is extremist one way or the other. Maybe that's why I'm an Episcopalian.

Here is a prayer that all of us should be able to pray whichever side of the aisle we're on:

O Lord our Governor, bless the leaders of our land, that we may be a people at peace among ourselves and a blessing to other nations of the earth.


Lord, keep this nation under your care.


To the President and members of the Cabinet, to Governors of States, Mayors of Cities, and to all in administrative authority, grant wisdom and grace in the exercise of their duties.

Give grace to your servants, O Lord.

To Senators and Representatives, and those who make our laws in States, Cities, and Towns, give courage, wisdom, and foresight to provide for the needs of all our people, and to fulfill our obligations in the community of nations.

Give grace to your servants, O Lord.

To the Judges and officers of our Courts give understanding and integrity, that human rights may be safeguarded and justice served.

Give grace to your servants, O Lord.

And finally, teach our people to rely on your strength and to accept their responsibilities to their fellow citizens, that they may elect trustworthy leaders and make wise decisions for the well-being of our society; that we may serve you faithfully in our generation and honor your holy Name.

For yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. Amen.

Peace be with you.

+ OD

Comments

M. Scott Carter said…
Ghandi once said "an eye for an eye and the whole world goes blind" I think we're there.
Well said, my friend, well said.
odysseus said…
Wow. Really? Thanks. That means a lot coming from you.
Pinball said…
Jack, my brother, you're discovering what Churchill said when quoting an unnamed source: "Democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time. "

The reason for this is a root principle that we both know to be true: Man is hopelessly depraved. That really sucks, because I'm working pretty dang hard to raise kids that are better than me. The problem is, though, that they can't be better than me. Their damned sinful nature keeps getting in the way.

Don't just get sick of it. Use this sickness in your guts to remind you that the world is a hopeless mess without the sovereign intervention of Jesus Christ. Come, Lord Jesus. In our hearts and lives and ultimately, into the world again.
odysseus said…
But, you see, that is exactly the dilemma, isn't it? The church is supposed to be Jesus to the world. Are we not called the 'Body of Christ'? Are we not supposed to take the message of reconciliation to the ends of the earth? Are we not supposed to let the world know that God has reconciled them back to himself through the blood of Jesus? Are we not supposed to be bringing God's ultimate future into the present? The answer to all of these questions is, 'YES!' I must say, with all humbleness of heart, that my home is not the USA. My home is the Kingdom of God. That is the is the only thing keeping me pressing forward. When I see the political landscape, it reminds me how right you are. I see this country enslaved. They are enslaved to the idol of freedom. I wrote about it before this post. We, as a country, are trying to better ourselves by our own power. We think we have all the answers. But, and this is the really sad point, we don't even know the friggin' questions!

Thanks for the comment, Pinball.
Pinball said…
Dude, you know you've written well when you inspire people to quote Gandhi and Churchill.
odysseus said…
Aw, shucks you guys... You're making me blush.

Again, thanks for your kindness.
Anglican said…
Preach on, Brother Odysseus!
odysseus said…
Now I must say, Anglican, I am a little surprised by your response. I figured I would get SOME criticism from you. Not the extreme type by any means, but a critique nonetheless. Perhaps I misunderstood your position, or, didn't take the time to listen well enough.

Either way, thanks for the encouragement. It is so nice having you as a brother.
Pinball said…
One really annoying thing about Jesus is that he insist on using weak people like us to do his work. He could come down and set all right in one fell swoop. But instead, he holds fast to his original plan of placing undying trust in untrustworthy people.
Pinball said…
Here's the "s" missing from insists. You'll have to cut it out and paste it on your own monitor. Sorry.
Anglican said…
No way. I agree that the artificially divisive nature of what passes for political "dialogue" is detrimental to the commonwealth of democracy. I do think that the Bush administration has been a disaster through and through, but I don't loathe the man. I voted for him several times--first as governor and later as president--and although I consider that 2000 vote a mistake, I don't harbor ill will personally.

Peace, brother. Peace.
odysseus said…
You know, I say that all the time (not the missing 's' bit, but the other). I have said it in the Men's Bible Study a couple of times, at least. When the question comes up, 'Why doesn't God do such and such?' or 'Why did God allow this or that?' -- my response is always the same. Because God determined to work through people to bring God's redeeming justice to the world. That was the purpose of the call of Abraham. God promised that God would put the world to rights through Abraham and his family. Therefore, the reason God doesn't just 'do something' about whatever, is because that is not the way it's supposed to be done. God is working through God's people to fulfill God's purposes.

That is something the government will never understand.
odysseus said…
Anglican, while I don't think the Bush administration has been a 'disaster through and through', I do disagree with things that the administration has done. But that is true with every administration. I remember, during Reagan's administration, that Oliver North said that Osama Bin Laden was the most dangerous person in the world. And yet, when he was hand delivered to the Clinton administration several times, that administration did nothing.

But, don't feel bad about casting your vote with him. Senator Clinton did as well. At least you have the guts to say your vote was a mistake. She won't even take that responsibility.

Peace to you, too, Brother.
odysseus said…
You know, one more thing...

Here is another example of what I'm talking about. I have people tell me that they actually believe President Bush is mentally challenged. And yet, he was the mastermind behind 9/11. Wait... What? And he duped the nation into war! Seriously? If this man was as delusional as some say, both Democrats and Republicans, he wouldn't have been able to do that, right? If he was able to do that, who is really mentally challenged? Sadly, I think it's us. Or at least that is what some would have us believe.
Ted M. Gossard said…
Yes, I can't stomach talk radio. Whatever true information you might get out of it is buried with all kids of rubbish that I dont' need to hear. Where is civility and respect, not to mention careful and fair thinking. I dont' know. Hard to find on the radio or television, though I do think "The Week with George Stephanopoulos" and "Meet the Press" aren't too bad in getting views out and in trying to be balanced. But who is balanced anyhow and on what scale?
odysseus said…
Good points, Ted. In fact, it was George who ask Senator Clinton about bringing troops home.

Concerning Talk Radio: Honestly, one of the only reasons I listen to it is to try and get the other side of the story. I try to be as balanced as possible. But, as you asked, 'how is balanced and on what scale?' So true. I think that that scale is a sliding one that keeps changing with whomever is in office. I'm all for an editorial piece, but not all the time. And it seems that no one will report on it. The other thing I can't stand about talk radio is the whole conspiracy theory that is played out. 'The Democrats own all the mainstream media' and all that dribble. I'm not that cynical. I think that there are honest reporters out there who try and get both sides of the story. And they have editors that want that story to be heard. Granted, they may be few and far between but still, they ARE out there.

One last thing: Check out my post before this one. I sorta hi-jack your 'Freedom' post.

Peace be with you, my Brother.

+ OD

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