The Watering Hole, Saturday, July 16th, 2016: ICYMI – The Only Good News This Week

Not only will Bill Maher be covering the Republican National Convention, but we’ll also have the king of political comedy, Jon Stewart, joining Stephen Colbert to cover both the RNC and the DNC. IMHO, this is the best news in a long time, and I’m looking forward to (hopefully) having some good laughs before weeping at the terrible decline of this nation on ugly, garish display.

In the meantime, I collected some happy gifs that commenters at Raw Story posted. Enjoy!

colbert and jon stewart drink tea

colbert popcorn

jon stewart popcorn

colbert yes nice you like

jon stewart happy moves

calvin and hobbes happy dancing

the doctor oh yes

This is our daily Open Thread, so go ahead and talk about stuff.

2012 Democratic National Convention starts on Tuesday, 9/4

To get ready for the upcoming Democratic National Convention, which will be held in Charlotte, North Carolina, from September 4th through September 6th, you can preview the event here at the convention’s official website.

You can check out the list of scheduled speakers here; see the map of state delegates here; and find the names of your state’s delegates.

I just hope that all spare chairs will be locked up and inaccessible, in case anyone has the dumb idea to pull an “Eastwood.”

The Watering Hole – Monday, July 30th, 2012: The United Theocracy of America

(Note: all emphasis mine)

2 Chronicles 7:14:  “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

A sidebar article at US NEWS & World Report caught my eye yesterday. How could I resist the headline, “Evangelical, Baptist Churches To Hold Massive Gathering Before Democratic Convention”?

On September 2, 2012, the evening before the Democratic National Convention kicks off in Charlotte, NC, a coalition of varied churches “…will host a massive church service in the 20,000 seat Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre.” This event is called the “Charlotte 714”, [short for “Charlotte 714, Humbly Exalting Jesus” [short for “Charlotte 714, Humbly Exalting Jesus as King in Our City”]

Charlotte714 is a call to the Church of Charlotte to a 40 day fast culminating with a special city-wide gathering the night before the Democratic National Convention on Labor Day Weekend. Charlotte714 is not a political event or a protest or demonstration. It is a gathering of believers seeking spiritual renewal in the church through biblical repentance. We humbly bow in Jesus’ name requesting that He hear from heaven, forgive our sins, and heal our land.

Charlotte714 is a proclamation that Jesus Christ is King, and that returning to Him in repentance is the only hope for our nation. From this position of authority, we lift up our hands in prayer for our city, our nation, and our leaders as directed in 1 Timothy 2. At the heart of Charlotte714 is restorative love. Love toward all people that we may be restored to God and fully submitted to Christ.”

No, no political agenda there.

The event’s ‘invitation’ page uses – or misuses, or abuses – a quote from Martin Luther King, Jr. in their justification of their ‘come to Jesus’ day:

“The church must be reminded that it is not the master or the servant of the state, but rather the conscience of the state. It must be the guide and the critic of the state, and never its tool. If the church does not recapture its prophetic zeal, it will become an irrelevant social club without moral or spiritual authority.” – Martin Luther King, Jr., Strength to Love, 1963

According to the Charlotte714 site: “The essence of Charlotte714 is captured best by late revivalist, Charles Finney”:

“Brethren, our preaching will bear its legitimate fruits…If the public press lacks moral discrimination, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in religion, the pulpit is responsible for it.”

– and –

The organizers of Charlotte714 are Christians who love Jesus and the City of Charlotte and want to provide a forum for the city church to unite together in the name of Jesus in the spirit of 2 Chronicles 7:14.”

Those organizers, David and Jason Benham, who head BENSON Companies,both graduated Liberty University in 1998. Jason Benham says ““For us to take credit for building a successful business would be like a shovel taking credit for digging a hole. We’re simply the tools God chose to use to build a successful business.”

David Benham is described on the Benham website “As a follower of Christ, he believes the marketplace is a powerful venue to impact lives.” “By remaining true to our core principles, despite the economic circumstances, we’ve grown our company by faith instead of it simply growing because the market is strong”.

On Jason Benham’s “about” page, “BENHAM Companies exists to build, strengthen, and reproduce the heart of Jesus Christ in believers around the world by teaching them to be Kingdom Builders in the marketplace and to give abundantly to His work on the earth.” Hmm, sounds a bit C-Street-ish to me.

Read the BENHAM Companies’ Global Initiative: something they call “Missioneering”, “…eras[ing] the line that separates business and ministry…”

I don’t know if this is supposed to be part of their ‘Missioneering’: “David Benham in this short 4 minute video expresses the very heart of God, as he brings Biblical truth to a horrible tragedy [Aurora, CO, shootings.] Jesus, and Jesus alone, is our answer.”

Here’s where some dots connect: David and Jason Benham’s father, “Flip” Benham “…is and has been the Director of Operation Rescue /Operation Save America since 1994. Randall Terry was the founder of Operation Rescue, and then the leadership was passed to Keith Tucci…In 1994, the leadership was passed to Flip Benham and that is where it remains.”

So, this is a “non-political” evangelical/fundie gathering, the day before the Democratic National Convention, organized by a corporation/ministry, that just happens to be closely connected to OR/OSA. If it’s ‘non-political’, then why can’t I find any indication that this same group is gathering before the Republican National Convention? Maybe they feel that one big prayer meeting will be enough for Jeebus to ‘hear them’ and act to ‘heal our land’?

I had to laugh at this one:  Operation Rescue/Operation Save America issued a “Press Release” stating: “Operation Save America Prepares for Invasion of DNC: “The DNC is coming to Charlotte, bringing its “culture of death!” Read some of the rest, about the blood running in the streets – somebody’s on some nasty drugs there.

This is our daily open thread — Whatcha thinking about?

P.S. – Here’s some interesting info on Tampa Bay’s preparations for the upcoming RNC there.

A Final Review of the Democratic National Convention

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Big Blue over at The Left Anchor had a great write-up about the Democratic National Convention which ended last Thursday evening. The weekend was all aflutter with the McCain pick for his Veep, but I think it might be good to remind everyone why this election is so important to every American. Thank you, Big Blue, for allowing me to repost this.

The main focus of this post will be to provided a more thorough review of Sen. Obama’s speech from last night. But first, I want to talk about the video introduction that preceded it, a very personal, disarming, humanizing video which provided the viewer a sense of intimacy with the candidate who has continually suffered the baseless analysis that he is a mystery to voters. In fact, I felt the introductory video to Obama’s speech was so effective that it deserves to be pushed into viral distribution. It has all the proper qualities for that. It’s a new way of looking at Obama, not with any lofty rhetoric, but as a man telling his story and the story of his family, revealing in one fell swoop those events that influenced him at a very early age. I think the video works on all levels. The narration is fantastic, carrying just the right tone, rhythm and cadence.

For their part, Michelle and Barack Obama talk about their courtship the way a couple might tell such a story to close friends and family while they still manage to tie it into the values that Obama holds, and by doing so, the reasons he’s now running for president. To see this video get lost to the bowels of the internet, never to be seen again would be a crime. So I’m reposting it here, and encourage anyone who missed it to watch it in its entirety, and to then email it along to your friends, or post it on your Facebook profile.


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Al Gore Rocks the House in Denver!

Al Gore spoke at the Democratic National Convention tonight. If you missed it, it was certainly one of his best.

Here is the text.

One of the greatest gifts of our democracy is the opportunity it offers us every four years to change course.

It’s not a guarantee – it’s only an opportunity.

The question facing us is, simply put, will we seize this opportunity for change?

That’s why I came here tonight: to tell you why I feel so strongly that we must seize this opportunity to elect Barack Obama President of the United States.

Eight years ago, some said there was not much difference between the nominees of the two major parties and it didn’t really matter who became President.

Our nation was enjoying peace and prosperity. Some assumed we would continue both no matter the outcome. But here we all are in 2008, and I doubt anyone would argue now that election didn’t matter.

Take it from me, if it had ended differently, we would not be bogged down in Iraq, we would have pursued Bin Laden until we captured him.

We would not be facing a self-inflicted economic crisis, we would be fighting for middle income families.

We would not be showing contempt for the Constitution, we’d be protecting the rights of every American regardless of race, religion, disability, gender or sexual orientation.

And we would not be denying the climate crisis, we’d be solving it.

Today, we face essentially the same choice we faced in 2000, though it may be even more obvious now – because John McCain, a man who has earned our respect on many levels, is now openly endorsing the policies of the Bush-Cheney White House and promising to actually continue them, the same policies all over again?

Hey, I believe in recycling, but that’s ridiculous.

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