Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Daily Brief - Wednesday, June 18, 2008

"You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry . . . " (Psalm 10:17)

The Daily Brief

1. Bush Urges Congress to Lift Offshore Drilling Ban
- Fox News

President Bush, on Wednesday, put his weight behind a move underfoot in Congress to lift a 27-year-old ban on oil exploration off U.S. shores as gasoline prices reach ever higher, and he cast blame on Democrats for Americans' pain at the pump in an election year that is focusing more heavily on economic issues. The President also laid out three other options: he renewed his call to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil exploration; he also said the country must be committed to development of oil shale - a type of rock that can yield petroleum if heated, for instance - in the western United States; and he said there must be more refinery capacity.

Bush admitted his proposals "will take years to have their full impact" but he said that rather than it being an excuse for delay, "it's a reason to move swiftly" and called on Congress to lift the moratorium by the July 4 recess. His remarks echoed a call by GOP presidential candidate John McCain for off-shore drilling this week.

· Father God, we come to You as theCreator of the Universe. We humbly thank You for answering our prayers to open up the natural resources that You gave to America, to be used to diminish our national dependence on Islamic oil sources. You write in Your Word, we are only to have trust in You and Your capabilities to provide for our daily needs. May we be obedient children and continue to expect miracles from Your Hand. May our President continue to look to You for help in all matters including energy. It is in Your Name we pray and ask You for help. Amen.

· As David trusted in You, Lord, so may we in all things. "And I know that I will live to see the Lord's Goodness in this present life. Trust in the Lord, have faith, do not despair. Trust in the Lord." (Psalm 27: 13-14 The Good News Bible")

2. Two More Levees Break in Western Illinois, Floodwaters Threaten Residents and Farmland - Fox News

Floodwaters breached two levees, 45 miles south of Gulfport in western Illinois on Wednesday, and threatened more Mississippi River towns in Missouri after inundating much of Iowa for the past week. Officials monitored levees in other Mississippi River towns in Illinois and Missouri in hopes that they would hold. Reports of raw sewage and farm runoff in floodwaters raised concerns about public health. But experts said most people are smart enough to avoid the tainted water. "Typically we don't see the outbreaks of diseases that people fear," said Mike Allred of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The National Weather Service expects crests this week along some Mississippi River communities near St. Louis, to come close to those of 1993. The river at Canton, Mo., could reach 27.5 feet on Thursday, just shy of the 27.88 mark of 1993 and more than 13 feet above flood stage. Crests at Quincy, Ill., and Hannibal, Mo., are expected to climb to about 15 feet above flood stage, narrowly short of the high water from 15 years ago. In St. Louis, the Mississippi is projected to crest Saturday at 39.8 feet, about 10 feet above flood stage but still a foot lower than in 1993.

· We pray to You, Father, for those affected by the Midwestern storms. May many in the flood's path come to know You as their Savior and Redeemer. May those flood victims and animals--the innocents in harm's way--be brought to safety. May clean water, food, blankets and shelter be brought to these areas. And, please guide and direct President Bush as he visits Iowa tomorrow. In Your Name we pray. Amen.

· "They see the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep, for He commands and raises the stormy wind, which lifts up the waves of the sea. They mount up to the heavens, they go down again to the depths. Their soul melts because of trouble. Then they cry out to the Lord in their trouble, and He brings them out of their distresses. He calms the storm, so that its waves are still. Then they are glad because they are quiet; so He guides them to their desired haven. Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! (Psalm 107: 24-26, 28-31 NKJV)

3. Midwest Floods Feed Grain Price Inflation - MSNBC

Beyond the short-term losses from physical damage and lost business, the worst flood to hit the U.S. breadbasket in 15 years has added momentum to the recent surge in food prices worldwide. The biggest economic impact from rising grain prices is already being felt. Corn prices at the Chicago Board of Trade soared to an all-time high near $8 a bushel Monday, as the relentless rains and overflowing rivers raised fears that Midwest farmers will lose production on as many as 5 million acres, or 6 percent of the crop.

Food prices typically spike after bad weather ruins crops, but the increases are usually short-lived. This time, however, the spike follows a global rise in food prices that seems likely to last, according to analysts.

· Father of the Harvest, You desire to prosper Your children and not to harm them. May many be saved unto You as their Only Hope, because of this new unintended consequence--no corn surpluses due to flooding.

· "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29: 11 NKJV)

4) Memo Shows Strategy To Legalize 'Gay Marriage' In Every State - Baptist Press

If the major homosexual activist groups have their way, there won't be an outbreak of "gay marriage" lawsuits nationwide now that California has legalized such unions -- at least not yet. Nine of the nation's largest homosexual activist organizations have issued a joint six-page statement urging couples not to sue in their home states or in federal court. The reason? Losses in such lawsuits could set the "gay marriage" movement back for years.

The joint document, called "Make Change, Not Lawsuits," was signed by, among others, the American Civil Liberties Union, Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal and the Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD). The statement urges same-sex couples to work toward defeating a proposed constitutional marriage amendment in California. "A loss on the initiative in California -- a loss at the hands of voters -- would be particularly damaging to work in other state legislatures and other state courts," the statement says. "That makes the California campaign of prime importance. Marriage in California will transform the national debate on the freedom to marry. It will do that because the decision is well-reasoned constitutional law from the most influential state court in the nation. It will do that because California is an American trendsetter. But marriage in California will do those things only if we can hold onto it."

· Heavenly Father, You created man and woman to be helpmates and to be of one flesh--not same-sex "partners." Dear Lord, we pray that those who mock Your sanctified definition of marriage found in Your Word will be convicted to stop leading alternative lifestyles, repent of their sins and accept and walk with You as their Savior. We pray that all of the plans of homosexual groups to legalize same-sex marriage in the United States will come to nothing and that the desire for heterosexual marriage be increased. Please help us, God. In Your Name we pray for help before Your impending judgment arrives as told in Isaiah 24. Amen.

·"The earth mourns and fades away, the world languishes and fades away, the haughty people of the earth languish. The earth is also defiled under its inhabitants, because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore the curse has devoured the earth, and those who dwell in it are desolate. Therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men are left." (Isaiah 24: 4-6 NKJV)

5. Conservatives Say 'Fairness Doctrine' Is Unfair -

Conservative lawmakers and activists are pressing the House of Representatives to hold a floor vote on the "Broadcaster Freedom Act," a bill that would ensure that no future president could regulate the airwaves without an act of Congress. The bill is a preemptive effort to prevent the Federal Communications Commission from reinstating the "Fairness Doctrine," which mandated from 1949-1987, that broadcasters airing opinion programs must also grant air time to those expressing an opposing viewpoint.

Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.), a broadcaster himself, who introduced the "Broadcaster Freedom Act" a year ago, reports that the bill is bottled up in committee. Pence has gathered 194 signatures (out of a required 218) on a discharge petition, a maneuver that would force the bill to bypass committee and go straight to the House floor for a vote. Pence challenged House Democrats to "declare their independence, stand for freedom and sign the Discharge Petition for Broadcast Freedom before the 4th of July."

· Please pray that the Lord would free up the vote to disband the "Fairness Doctrine" altogether through the passage of the "Broadcaster Freedom Act." Please ask Him to stop the desires of liberal organizations who want their opposing views presented at no charge to them on conservative talk programs by misusing the original intent of this legislation. We ask our Lord to protect our freedom of speech in America with the protection of our First Amendment rights in broadcasting and in every phase of American life.

· "Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple." (Romans 16: 17-18 NKJV)

The Middle East in Focus

The Middle East in Focus

This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE:

"Moreover you shall provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God: men of truth, hating unjust gain; and place such over them, to be rulers." (Exodus 18:21)

1. Israeli Ministers Mull Plans for Military Strike against Iran - Spielgel

The Israeli government no longer believes that sanctions can prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons. A broad consensus in favor of a military strike against Tehran's nuclear facilities -- without the Americans, if necessary -- is beginning to take shape.

2. U.S. to guarantee Israel's capital to Palestinians? - WND

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice yesterday pledged to study a Palestinian proposal for the U.S. to guarantee eastern sections of Jerusalem will become part of a future Palestinian state, WND has learned.

3. Barak: Too early to declare truce in Gaza - Ynet News

A ceasefire between Israel and Hamas will begin on Thursday, a Palestinian official familiar with Egyptian-brokered truce efforts said on Tuesday.

4. Jerusalem gay parade set for next Thursday - Jerusalem Post

The capital's controversial annual Gay Pride Parade, which has repeatedly encountered vehement and sometimes violent opposition from the haredi and religious public as well as Christian and Muslim religious leaders, is scheduled to take place next Thursday with its most vocal opponents, the haredi community, choosing to avoid public protests in an effort to minimize publicity of the event, both organizers and opponents said Tuesday.

Iran in the News


This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE:

"For by strength no man shall prevail. The adversaries of the Lord shall be broken in pieces. From heaven He will thunder against them. The Lord will judge the ends of the earth." (1 Samuel 2:9-10)

1. Threats to strike Iran concern Israel - Jerusalem Post

Fears are mounting in the defense establishment that comments by senior officials regarding an imminent Israeli military strike against Iran will spur Russia to complete controversial sales of anti-aircraft missile systems to the Islamic Republic, The Jerusalem Post learned on Monday.

2. Iran Withdraws $75 Billion From Europe - ABC News

Iran has withdrawn around $75 billion from Europe to prevent the assets from being blocked under threatened new sanctions over Tehran's disputed nuclear ambitions, an Iranian weekly said.

3. Bush gathers support of European leaders - USA Today

President Bush ended his week-long European trip Monday, carrying home commitments from Europe's major leaders on Iran, Afghanistan and even Iraq.

Clear And Stark Contrast

Clear And Stark Contrast

Friday, I reported to you about the terrible Supreme Court decision extending the constitutional protections afforded to American citizens to foreign terrorists captured in the war against Islamofascism. Both candidates have reacted to the outrageous ruling, and I want to share their remarks with you.

Barack Obama: "The Court's decision is a rejection of the Bush Administration's attempt to create a legal black hole at Guantanamo -- yet another failed policy supported by John McCain. This is an important step toward reestablishing our credibility as a nation committed to the rule of law, and rejecting a false choice between fighting terrorism and respecting habeas corpus. I voted against the Military Commissions Act because its sloppiness would inevitably lead to the Court, once again, rejecting the Administration's extreme legal position. The fact is, this Administration's position is not tough on terrorism, and it undermines the very values that we are fighting to defend. Bringing these detainees to justice is too important for us to rely on a flawed system that has failed to convict anyone of a terrorist act since the 9-11 attacks, and compromised our core values."

John McCain: "I think it's one of the worst decisions in history. I think that it opens up a whole new chapter in interpretation of our Constitution, that says that people who are not citizens of this country and are enemy combatants -- some of them still ardently seeking to destroy the United States of America and all that we stand for and believe in -- are now granted habeas corpus rights. . . Now we have civilian judges, with no military background and experience, that are now, not only going to hear cases, but also you're going to see a flood of habeas suits brought against the United States of America, including, very likely, members of the United States military.

"Senator Obama applauds this decision and he supports it . . . I strongly supported Justice Roberts and Justice Alito, Senator Obama opposed them and voted against them on ideological grounds. Senator Obama wanted to filibuster Justice Alito. . . We will regret very much in the days and months and years ahead this decision by the United States Supreme Court."

Do you see the difference, my friends? The contrast between these two candidates on issues of national security and judicial appointments is stark. With each passing day, there seems to be no position too radical for Obama not to embrace it. He has advocated the full repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act. He is so extremely pro-abortion that he opposed legislation to protect babies who were born after botched abortions. He wants to repeal the Bush tax cuts. He wants to meet with Holocaust-denying dictators. Now he has embraced the idea that foreign terrorists deserve the same constitutional protections that you have, giving the Islamofascists more rights than we gave Nazi spies in World War II.

(Source: Gary Bauer; End-of-Day; June 16, 2008)