• The Daily Brief
• The Middle East in Focus
• Focus on DOMA Repeal
• Focus: Legalize Gambling?
• The Good News Corner
• Worship with Us Today!
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The Daily Brief - Wednesday, October 26, 2011
"Occupy till I come." (Luke 19:13b)
The Daily Brief
1. House Democratic Whip 'Not Optimistic' on Deficit Super Committee - CNSNews.com
House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said that he was "not optimistic" that the Joint Committee tasked with finding $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction by Thanksgiving would be successful. Instead, Hoyer said he was "hopeful" the 12-member committee would succeed. "People ask me 'Are you optimistic?' I say 'Look, I'm not optimistic. I'm hopeful,'" Hoyer told reporters at his weekly press briefing Tuesday. Hoyer added that "hopeful is not confident."
- LORD, we cry to You to "open the eyes" of the citizens of America so we will obey You by electing righteous and law abiding, strong and wise leaders. May the coming elections bring a tidal wave of righteous leadership elected to all levels of government across the land. May we guard with courage and selflessness the great blessings which You have committed to our trust.
- "Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowlege." (1 Timothy 6:20)
2. Union President Testifies: ICE HQ Ordered Agents Not to Arrest Illegals--Including Fugitives - CNSNews.com
Chris Crane, president of a union that represents Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers, testified in the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration last week that ICE agents have been told by ICE headquarters not to arrest illegal aliens who do not have a prior criminal conviction even if they are fugitives who have been ordered deported by an immigration judge or are individuals who have illegally re-entered the United States after being deported and thus have perpetrated a felony. "Aliens who could not be arrested included but were not limited to ICE fugitives that had been ordered deported by a federal immigration judge as well as aliens who had illegally re-entered the United States after deportation, a federal felony," Crane, who is also an active-duty ICE agent, told the committee on Oct. 12.
- Dear Lord, we thank You that this information has become public! We pray there will be tremendous pressure put on ICE headquarters, to cause them to immediately cease all orders and policies giving preferential treatment to lawbreaking illegal aliens. We pray that those who gave these orders will be held accountable. We also lift up to You Governor Jan Brewer of Arizona, and others who are fighting to keep "our inheritance from being turned over to aliens." We ask You to prosper those who use their leadership to rightly enforce the protective laws of this nation.
- "Remember O Lord, what has come upon us; look and behold our reproach! Our inheritance has been turned over to aliens, and our houses to foreigners." (Lamentations 5:1,2)
3. Pope to promote peace in talks with world religious leaders - Rapture Ready News
Pope Benedict XVI has invited 300 religious leaders to a meeting in Assisi in Italy to repudiate "violence in the name of God" amid growing tensions fuelled by fundamentalists across the world. Over 50 Islamic representatives are expected to attend the talks from several countries, including Saudi Arabia and Iran. They will be joined by Rabbis, Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, Sikhs, a Zoroastrian, a Bahai and representatives of Taoism and Confucianism as well as of other traditional religions from Africa and America. For the first time, four atheists will also attend the meeting.
- LORD, Your Word is true! You are The Constant in this changing world. Men want to worship as men see fit, but You alone are worthy. Men want to seek answers as men see fit, but You alone are The Path to eternal life. There is no other Name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12); no other name by which peace can be found. Lord, may this Truth be evident in this gathering.
- JESUS said, "Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But narrow is the gate and difficult is the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. " (Matthew 7:13,14)
4. 'Occupy' Protesters 'Defecating on Our Doorsteps,' NYC Residents Complain - CNSNews.com
New Yorkers who live near the park where anti-Wall Street protesters have been camping out for more than a month are complaining that their quality of life has declined. At a two-hour meeting Thursday night, some neighbors said protesters urinated in the streets and beat drums in the middle of the night.
But the board voted unanimously for a resolution that recognized the protesters' First Amendment rights while calling for a crackdown on noise and public urination and defecation. U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and state Sen. Daniel Squadron called the community board's resolution "an attempt to establish a sensible framework that respects the protesters' fundamental rights while addressing the very real quality of life concerns for residents and businesses around Zuccotti Park.
- Lord, we have grieved as law abiding citizens have been arrested for simply praying on a sidewalk. Yet these debased individuals break the laws and find both reprieve and the affirmation of our President. May the law, which is for the lawless, be applied to these lawless and insubordinate, ungodly and profane.(1 Tim 1:9). May they fall into great disfavor and be held fully accountable for their actions. We also ask You to raise up strategically appointed believers to go and speak Your anointed Word on the streets of our cities with an anointing that will break the yoke of sin.
- "And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting." Romans 1:28 "Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people. " (Proverbs 14:34)
5. Obama vows to bypass congress over economy - The Australian
Obama has vowed to issue executive orders from the White House bypassing congress wherever possible as he tries to kick-start the ailing US economy. Obama's threat yesterday marks a new phase in his stand-off with Republican opponents in the Senate, who have so far blocked his $US447 billion ($427bn) jobs revival plan. Spending money that is not his to spend -- impeachment is certainly not out of the question if he breaks the law.
- Bind the spirits of lawlessness and selfishness that seem to fuel the spirit of this president. The Constitution requires that he work in tandem with the Congress for the good of the people, and not by way of a series of executive orders, as a tyrant would do. Loose humility, grace, and wisdom upon the current occupant of the Oval Office. In His Name, amen.
- "Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven." (Matthew 18:18)
6. CDC panel recommends HPV shot for boys - BBC
A US government medical committee has recommended the human papillomavirus vaccine for boys, to tackle the spread of the sexually-transmitted virus. While the vaccine has been available to boys before, the vote means that injections are now likely to be covered under medical insurance. Officials said a lower than expected rate of vaccination in girls encouraged them to reconsider the policy.
- The cost of this new mandate will be $140 million a year of our hard-earned taxpayer money. Pray that Congress will review this recommendation carefully, and use great wisdom regarding its implementation. Please see a commentary, below, with more information on this news from the Family Research Council. Pray for wisdom.
- "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you." (James 1:5)
7. Human Rights Group Warns: Egypt May Cover-Up Coptic Christian Killings - The Blaze
A leading international rights group has warned of a cover-up by the Egyptian military in the investigation of the killing of more than two dozen mostly Coptic Christian demonstrators in the deadliest single incident since the February overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak. The New-York based Human Rights Watch called Tuesday for the independent investigation of the October 9 deaths of 27 people, mostly Christian, in front of Cairo's state TV building in the Maspero district along the Nile.
- Pray that the truth is not hidden about this horrible massacre. Please see more, below, on the issue of religious persecution worldwide. The Blood of the Martrys now cries out against the nation of Egypt. Pray for justice!
- "And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death." (Rev. 12:11)
8. 2.5 Million Iranian Students to Celebrate 1979 U.S. Hostage Crisis by Marching in Support of Occupy Wall Street - The Blaze
Some 2.5 million Iranian students are commemorating what they call a "National Day Against Global Arrogance" on November 4th by rallying in solidarity with the "oppressed and deprived" members of Occupy Wall Street. The day signifies the 1979 takeover of the former U.S. embassy in Tehran by Muslim students, who held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days. The Iran hostage crisis occurred during Jimmy Carter's presidency and ended with the hostages' release just moments after newly elected President Ronald Reagan delivered his inaugural address in 1981.
- Say what? We do not see any link between this planned protest in Tehran and the ongoing demonstrations of the OSW movement. Insanity seems to be breeding insanity. Sever the link in the spirit between the "rage" in Iran and the "rage" in America. Pray this down.
- "This far and no further and here shall your proud waves stop!" (Job 38:11)
The Middle East in Focus
This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE:
The LORD shall go forth as a mighty man. He shall stir up jealousy like a man of war. He shall cry, yes, roar. He shall prevail against His enemies. (Isaiah 42:13)
1. Hezbollah rules out war - UPI
Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah said many of the region's problems were because of Western meddling but stressed war wasn't an option.
2. Palestinian bid for statehood faces rocky road as new UN Security council members announced - Ha'aretz
Azerbaijan joins Morocco, Pakistan, Guatemala, and Togo as non-permanent members, in what is shaping to be a more U.S.-friendly UNSC.
3. Quartet officials coming to area to restart peace talks - Jerusalem Post
Quartet officials will take yet another stab over the next two days at kick-starting the stalemated diplomatic process, meeting separately in Jerusalem with Israeli and Palestinian representatives in an effort to convince the latter to agree to a direct meeting.
4. Palestinian negotiator: Israel must agree to our terms, or no peace talks - Ha'aretz
Palestinian officials expressed pessimism on Wednesday that scheduled meetings with representatives of the Middle East Quartet of international mediators would see Israeli-Palestinian direct peace talks get underway.
5. Israel may lose German sub deal - Ynet News
Germany is "reconsidering" its decision to sell Israel a sixth Dolphin class submarine, Yedioth Ahronoth reported on Wednesday.
6. Saudi cleric: Kidnap soldier - get $100,000 - YnetNews
A week after the release of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, top Saudi cleric Dr. Awad al-Qarni is offering a $100,000 reward to anyone who kidnaps Israeli soldiers. He is responding to an ad published by the Libman family offering a similar reward for anyone who catches the person who murdered their relative Shlomo Libman. Libman was killed by terrorists near the settlement of Yitzhar in 1998.
Focus on DOMA Repeal
Senate Committee to Consider DOMA Repeal Next Week
Summary: "Respect for Marriage Act" shows no real respect for marriage.
On Nov. 3, the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to begin debate on a bill that would effectively repeal the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), opening the gate to same-sex marriage nationwide. "It will be an end run around all the states that have decided to protect marriage," said CitizenLink Federal Issues Analyst Ashley Horne.
More than 40 states have passed either laws or constitutional amendments defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman; earlier this year, a national poll revealed 62 percent of Americans think that's the only way it should be defined.
The Respect for Marriage Act -- S. 598, introduced by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., in March -- could receive a committee vote anytime between Nov. 3 and Nov. 10. All 10 Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee support it, outnumbering the eight Republicans there, so passage is likely. Once it reaches the full Senate, however, the bill's prospects become less clear.
"We don't have a pro-family majority in the Senate right now, so it's possible this bill would pass," said Horne. "But we'll continue to educate senators about the benefits of marriage for children and for society at large."
A companion bill in the U.S. House of Representatives, H.R. 1116, has 129 sponsors from both parties. President Obama has pledged to sign any bill repealing DOMA that reaches his desk.
Should that happen, same-sex couples would be eligible for federal marriage benefits nationwide--and both state and federal benefits if they live in a place where same-sex marriage is recognized, such as Massachusetts. The U.S. would also give marital benefits to same-sex couples legally married in another country, as long as at least one of them is a U.S. citizen.
In testifying before the Senate in July, Alliance Defense Fund Senior Legal Counsel Austin R. Nimocks noted government's only interest in marriage, traditionally, is children--who fare best with married biological mothers and fathers.
"This legislation seeks to replace the essential public purposes of marriage with various private purposes," he said. "Because of the fundamental truth that children are the product of sexual relationships between men and women, and that men and women each bring something important and unique to the table of parenting, this government maintains a compelling interest in protecting and preserving the institution of marriage as the union of one man and one woman." (CitizenLink)
Tell your senators why the Respect for Marriage Act disrespects marriage, and ask them not to pass it.
Government Gives HPV Its Best Shot
As if there weren't enough controversy surrounding the HPV vaccine, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) just created more. In a formal recommendation Tuesday, the CDC's panel on immunizations advised that boys as young as 11 and 12 be inoculated as well. The vaccine was approved for boys in 2009, but when the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted to add it to the list of "recommended" vaccines for boys for the first time yesterday, it opened the door to more insurance companies--and taxpayers--footing the bill.
The public health case for boys to receive the vaccine is weaker than it is for girls. When a man contracts HPV, the result is usually genital warts (a much less serious symptom than cervical cancer), so it is questionable if the benefit is worth the cost (almost $400 for the three shots). The CDC is quick to point out that the vaccine also protects against anal, mouth, and throat cancer--but they downplay the fact that these cancers are almost entirely the result of men having homosexual sex!
Apart from the cost of the shots (upwards of $140 million a year), perhaps the most infuriating aspect of all this is the government's insistence that we look for ways to minimize the impact of promiscuity instead of working to encourage the end of it. Rather than asking young people to change their behavior, society is scrambling to enable it. It's like trying to address the problem of drunk driving by making better airbags. We can't tackle long-term safety with short-term solutions. And unfortunately, tiptoeing around the fundamental problem--premarital sex and homosexual sex--shows how far off course we are.
Vaccinating against HPV, while important, won't inoculate people from the other negative consequences of promiscuous sex--many of which are just as destructive. Some people have argued that it's "ethical" for boys to be vaccinated to protect their future sexual partners, but the most ethical answer of all is focusing on abstinence, which is the only 100% effective way to prevent all of the dangerous side-effects of sex outside of marriage. Of course, we're all told that it's unrealistic to think young people can abstain. But it's only unrealistic to the degree that we fail to challenge them to do so! (Family Research Council)
Focus: Legalize Gambling?
House Committee Discusses Legalizing Internet Gambling
Summary: No opposition among people who testified.
At a U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade hearing yesterday, six people testified about aspects of online gambling -- but not one opposed it outright.
Rather, most of the testimony centered on how to make sure people who do gamble online are protected from site operators and each other, and that interested parties all get a share of the revenues Internet gambling is expected to generate.
However, in discussing why federal legislators should make sure any Internet gambling bill they eventually pass sets aside at least $50 million a year for treatment programs, Keith Whyte, executive director of the National Council on Problem Gambling, made a few key observations.
"Studies throughout the world find relatively high rates of gambling problems among those who gamble online," he said, "though it's not clear if Internet gambling is a cause or effect of problem gambling."
The social cost of problem gambling in the U.S., Whyte said, is approximately $7 billion a year through addiction, bankruptcy and crime. Gambling addicts are five times more likely than other adults to be alcoholics, four times more likely to abuse drugs, three times more likely to be depressed or experience an anxiety disorder and eight times more likely to be bipolar. Approximately 20 percent of the members of Gamblers Anonymous have attempted suicide.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Read the full testimony of Keith Whyte, executive director of the National Council on Problem Gambling. (CitizenLink)
The Good News Corner:
Forbes, McIntyre Announce 100 Member Milestone for Bipartisan Congressional Prayer Caucus
Washington, D.C. - Congressman J. Randy Forbes (Rep., VA-04) and Congressman Mike McIntyre (Dem., NC-07), Co-Chairmen of the bipartisan Congressional Prayer Caucus, announced today that the Caucus's membership has reached the milestone of 100 Members. The purposes of the Congressional Prayer Caucus are to 1) recognize the vital role that prayer by individuals of all faiths has played in uniting us as a people and in making us a more generous, more cooperative, and more forgiving people than we might otherwise have been; 2) collect, exchange, and disseminate information about prayer as a fundamental and enduring feature of American life; 3) utilize the legislative process - both through sponsorship of affirmative legislation and through opposition to detrimental legislation - to assist the nation and its people in continuing to draw upon and benefit from this essential source of our strength and well-being.
"Our nation was founded on the solid conviction that all men were endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; the faith that inspired our inception carried us through the struggles of establishing independence, developing our form of government, and prevailing in trying times. Yet across America, faith has come under attack, often disguised in the celebrated subtlety of political correctness. In response, the nearly one-in-four Members of Congress that comprise the Congressional Prayer Caucus are working to preserve the presence of religion, faith, and morality in the marketplace of ideas. The strength and size of this bipartisan Caucus is a testament to the importance of our nation's Judeo-Christian heritage that is worth defending," said Forbes.
"Now more than ever, our nation must turn back to prayer as the source of our strength, knowledge, and direction. By reaching this historic milestone, Members of the Congressional Prayer Caucus are joining together to seek that common good that unites us as a nation. The true source of prayer is not found in the halls of Congress, or in the Oval Office of the West Wing, or in the chambers of the Supreme Court - but rather it is found on our knees before the throne of grace of Almighty God. Prayer has always been at the foundation of the United States, and the Congressional Prayer Caucus will keep working and growing to preserve this bedrock belief," said McIntyre.
In 2005, Congressman Forbes gathered a small group of members of the U.S. House of Representatives who began meeting in Room 219 of the Capitol to pray for our nation, which they still do today. These Members later formed the Congressional Prayer Caucus - an official Caucus of the U.S. House of Representatives - to formally acknowledge the important role that prayer plays in American life and history and to monitor and work to guard the right of individuals in America to pray. Currently, Congressman Forbes and Congressman McIntyre serve as the Co-Chairmen of this Caucus, which has grown to a bipartisan group of 100 Members dedicated to protecting religious liberty and recognizing our nation's rich, spiritual history.
Learn more about the Congressional Prayer Caucus here.
A full list of all Congressional Prayer Caucus Members is available here.
Capitol Hill Prayer Partners wishes to congratulate the Congressional Prayer Caucus on this momentous news. It is by the Grace of God that this Caucus has been established and has grown to serve as the strong voice it is today within the Halls of Congress, on behalf of our right to pray in our nation.
To GOD be the Glory! Great things He hath done!
Worship with Us Today!
"In Your Presence" By Paul Wilbur
In Your presence,
that's where I belong.
In Your presence,
O Lord, my God.
In Your presence,
that's where I am strong.
Seeking Your face,
touching Your grace,
In the cleft of the Rock,
In Your presence, O God.