Richard Ritenbaugh, challenging the 'progressive' agitators' demand that plastic straws be banned, examines the charge that plastic straws massively destroy wildlife and fill our oceans with trash. Objective analysis of land- and ocean-based repositories of debris consistently show the presence of plastic straws to be statistically insignificant. The great Pacific garbage patch, twice the size of the state of Texas and nine feet deep, is actually composed of discarded fishing nets, floats, traps, crates, junk from the Japanese Tsunami, and industrial waste by the East. Plastic straws contributed virtually nothing to this garbage pile. Yet legislators in California, Canada, and Great Britain seek to criminalize plastic straws (with the California Legislature assigning jail time for dispensing them in restaurants), while encouraging the use of adult "sippy cups" which, ironically, exacerbates the real pollution problem. The environmentalist warriors do not really want to "save the planet" so much as they want to promote group-think. This latest example of governmental overreach should be the final straw of this nonsensical narrative involving political correctness.
Martin Collins points out the potential dangers of a recent trend called "social scoring"—the rating of a person's influence by such criteria as the number of social media followers on Twitter and Facebook. The effect will be to create a 'caste system," as media platforms or government bureaucrats implement automated algorithms to determine whether one is 'trustworthy' or not—calculated by how comments, likes, or dislikes conform with politically correct dogma. When the dubious social score is paired with FICO data, a person's ability to take part in normal economic activity (buying and selling) may be jeopardized. Social scoring would hold free speech hostage as illiberal political agendas would punish citizens for "politically incorrect" behavior. Lacking God's moral compass, the world judges harshly and unfairly, posing a grave danger for God's called-out ones and those suspected of harboring old-fashioned moral standards.
Germany is in a bind. It is an industrial powerhouse, the richest economy in Europe, but it must prop up several poor-performing economies throughout the rest of the European Union. Berlin cannot continue this practice lest they drag it down with them. David Grabbe warns that Germany's decisions on these matters could have far-reaching consequences for Europe and the rest of the world.
It was not all that long ago that news outlets and pundits wrestled with the fact that the United States was the world's superpower and policeman. Today, however, due to the Obama administration's policies, new powers are rising to fill the power vacuum created by America's retreat. Richard Ritenbaugh discusses five emerging empires that threaten world peace.
Martin Collins, citing an article by Tom DeWeese, "Is the U.S. Being Colonized by China?" affirms that the debt compiled by the United States government, accelerated exponentially under the current regime, is beginning to be collected by the Chinese, who have been buying up massive parcels of real estate, food sources, oil, and mineral rights. The Carter Administration literally gave the control of the Panama Canal away to China, while the Clinton Administration gave away missile technology. The current Administration, in order to pay for its reckless, careless spending, is ushering a covert colonization of America by giving away massive tracts of real-estate setting up 400 EB-5 projects, allegedly offering 'employment' to American citizens, but actually making American Citizens serfs in their own land, while turning the actual ownership and control over to the Chinese government without one shot fired. Interestingly, in the recent government land grab in Nevada, Chinese soldiers have been overseeing the project, occupying the Bundy Ranch with Senator Harry Reid's blessing. Recently, the Chinese purchased a tract of land in the Catskill Mountains of New York, with plans to construct China City, a planned exclusive residence for Chinese nationals. China is gobbling up America's debt, placing itself in firm control of United States 'sovereignty,' destroying the Monroe Doctrine and fulfilling the prophecy of Deuteronomy 28:43-45. It is time for God's called-out ones to exercise caution.
The history between Japan and China has been punctuated by periods of intense rivalry and hostility, and lately, tensions have ratcheted up once again. Richard Ritenbaugh examines recent events between the two nations, showing that Japanese resistance to changing its self-imposed pacifism is wearing thin.
The People's Republic of China recently extended its Air Defense Identification Zone, or ADIZ, farther into the East China Sea. The move escalated tensions with Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan, whose own ADIZs now overlap China's. Richard Ritenbaugh speculates that Beijing is trying to find out if its neighbors will blink first.
John Ritenbaugh, observing that the news of Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, and Israel has diminished, suggests that the economic woes of America have taken over in the news. Economist Martin Weiss suggested that this demise has been coming at us like a roaring freight train. A family, a company, or nation cannot keep spending beyond its means without suffering consequences. It is illogical that we need to spend money in order to get out of debt. Like ancient Rome, who tried to entertain its citizenry by bread and circuses, while it spent itself into oblivion. The Chinese, economically in better shape than we are because of the industrial base we have given them, have guaranteed 15% of our national debt. The foolishness of the government in thinking it can spend itself out of debt by printing more "funny money" will bring hideous economic slavery to this nation. When nothing backs up the currency, it becomes worth nothing.
Richard T. Ritenbaugh: When foreigners come to this country and comment on American news coverage, it is usually to opine that our reporting is, frankly, self-interested. ...
Recently, a highly placed Chinese official made a point of telling the U.S. Treasury Secretary that China is no threat to the United States. Richard Ritenbaugh shows why this may be true—for now.
Predicting economic activity is about as tricky as forecasting the weather. Nevertheless, David Grabbe, citing recent financial news items, posits that the stage is set for economic instability around the world in the short term.
China seems to be the present media-darling among nations, as news shows, magazines, and reports of all kinds tout its emerging greatness. However, David Grabbe shows that behind its economic successes are latent weaknesses that are set to converge soon.
Charles Whitaker: The third Asian demographic phenomenon highlighted by Nicholas Eberstadt (“Power and Population in Asia,” Policy Review, February/March 2004, pp. ...
Charles Whitaker: Today, the prospect of lengthening life expectancies appear more fantasy than possibility. "[A]ll five former Soviet Central Asian republics began the year 2000 with distinctly lower life expectancies that they enjoyed in 1990—all this in peacetime and in the absence of any obvious political catastrophe." In the old Soviet Union, it is even worse. ...
Charles Whitaker: Three events are taking place in Asia with an intensity never before witnessed in human history—at least not since the Flood. ...
What are the causes—moral, social, and technological—behind the new demographic realities? Perhaps more importantly, what will be their consequences? Charles Whitaker spotlights the value of children to society—one that is increasingly ignored in this age of materialism.
It seems counter-intuitive to think that the world's population is shrinking, but trend lines show the possibility of a 95% reduction in population over the next 500 years. Charles Whitaker examines the reasons for this precipitous decline, asserting that God's Word prophesies an altogether different scenario.
Following the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse is the Fifth Seal, depicting souls under the altar crying out to God for vengeance. Richard Ritenbaugh goes into the details of this prophecy of persecution and martyrdom of the saints.
John Ritenbaugh, focusing upon Matthew 17:13 and clearing up some misconceptions about the resurrected Elijah coming before the arrival of Christ (a mission fulfilled totally by John the Baptist in Christ's time), cautions us to apply duality of prophecy carefully and cautiously rather than indiscriminately. With this admonition in mind, the sermon focuses upon a major world event even secular historians have termed a dramatic axial period, occurring within the sixth century B.C. -a time faithfully described by the prophets beginning with Jeremiah- a time sometimes referred to as the time of the Gentiles- reckoned to be the origin of the present Babylonic system or world order. Paradoxically, this system has been embraced and perpetuated by the modern house of Jacob. A new axial period, beginning with the testimony of the two witnesses, will again turn this world upside down, replacing the present decadent Babylonian system with God's government.
Though the nations of this world are pushing for global economics and government, God's Word shows that mankind will not succeed. Charles Whitaker makes the case that only Jesus Christ will be able to make world government work.
Globalism, as it comes in contact with tribalism, often causes conflict because the two systems are incompatable. Charles Whitaker also explains how globalism, China and prophecy collide in the last days.
Globalism is a fact of our age, but what ideas and institutions undergird it? Charles Whitaker shows that most of globalisms underlying principles have their origins in the Israelitish peoples.
God prophesies that Israel will be conquered in the end time. Could anti-American sentiment, especially in Europe, be the beginning of the end for modern Israel?
What is in store for the world in the next decade? Richard Ritenbaugh looks at the trends concerning Asia, Europe, the Middle East and several other regions in light of biblical prophecy.
In this keynote address of the 1995 Feast of Tabernacles, John Ritenbaugh asserts that because cultural restraints which once held human nature in check have been removed, vile human nature has waxed increasingly more corrupt and depraved, approaching conditions described in Genesis 6:5-7. Skyrocketing statistics on social spending, abortion, violent crime, illegitimate births, divorce, teenage suicides etc. indicate a worsening cancerous degeneracy (Isaiah 1:6). Paradoxically, increased social spending, by creating dependency, has actually worsened the problems. God has indicted our people (Hosea 4:1-3, Ezekiel 7:23-27) for its bloody violence and disregard for the preciousness of life. The Feast of Tabernacles pictures a refreshing time when these problems will be dealt with from the just and equitable mind of God.
China, the Asian "sleeping giant", has awakened and begun to make its presence felt in world politics. Could this be a precursor to the sixth trumpet plague of Revelation 9:13-19?
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