Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

Journalist Bob Woodward gets e-mail threat from senior person in the White House

That video is from left-leaning CNN.

Here is Newsbusters with the transcript.

Excerpt:

Tonight, Washington Post’s Bob Woodward alleged that because he is sticking to his guns in insisting that sequestration was the brainchild of the Obama White House, that it was personally approved by Obama, and that bringing up tax increases now to try to resolve the current sequestration impasse is “moving the goalposts,” he has been threatened by “a very senior person” in the White House. Woodward said so on CNN’s Situation Room earlier today. What’s even more troubling is that Woodward told two Politico reporters the same thing yesterday, and that they appear to have sat on the revelation until this evening when the CNN interview forced their hand. Relevant portions of the CNN transcript and Politico column follow the jump.

This is from a rush transcript at CNN. Woodward was interviewed by the network’s Wolf Blitzer and Kate Bolduan (I checked the first portion of it against the video; there was no supporting video for the last line quoted below; bolds are mine throughout this post):

BOLDUAN: What do you make of the White House’s response to your article?

WOODWARD: Well, I think they’re confused. I think they’ve got this idea. I mean, they put out these long talking points and said, see, even Woodward’s book reports that Speaker Boehner said, let’s get $600 billion over ten years in revenue in the super committee. That’s exactly right. That’s not the sequester. And they’ve said – they have,as you know, I said, get somebody from the White House here, and we’ll debate.

BLITZER: We invited the White House to send someone here, to debate this issue with you, and they declined.

WOODWARD: Why? Why? Because it’s irrefutable; that’s exactly what happened. I’m not saying this is a moving of the goalposts that was some criminal act or something like that, I’m just saying, that’s –

… BLITZER: You’re used to this kind of stuff, but share with our viewers what’s going on between you and the White House.

WOODWARD: Well, they’re not happy at all, and some people kind of, you know, said, look, we don’t see eye to eye on this. They never really said, though – afterwards, they’ve said that this is factually wrong, and they – and it was said to me in an e-mail by a top –

BLITZER: What was said? Yes.

WOODWARD: It was said very clearly, you will regret doing this.

BLITZER: Who sent that e-mail to you?

WOODWARD: Well, I’m not going to say.

BLITZER: Was it a senior person at the White House?

WOODWARD: A very senior person. And just as a matter – I mean, it makes me very uncomfortable to have the White House telling reporters, you’re going to regret doing something that you believe in. And even though we don’t look at it that way, you do look at it that way. And I think if Barack Obama knew that was part of the communication’s strategy – let’s hope it’s not a strategy, but it’s a tactic that somebody’s employed, and said, look, we don’t go around trying to say to reporters, if you, in an honest way, present something we don’t like, that, you know, you’re going to regret this. And just – it’s Mickey Mouse.

… BOLDUAN: That line clearly has touched a nerve with folks at the White House. There’s no question about that.

Why would anyone think that the tactics of this socialist, big-government regime would be any different than other socialist, big-government regimes? They don’t like criticism. They don’t like questions. They don’t like being held accountable.

You can find a list of some of the previous acts of thuggish intimidation against journalists here:

Hey, Bob, you can’t say we didn’t warn you.  We knew this White House was capable of attacking even the great Bob Woodward for telling the truth.

You could have listened to Michael Barone.  He saw it coming even before Barack Obama was elected. In October 2008, he penned “The Coming Obama Thugocracy.”

I experienced it when DOJ press harpy Tracy Schmaler yelled at a half dozen reporters, as the White House official did to you, about my under-oath testimony involving the New Black Panther dismissal.  Her victims included Pete Williams, Quin Hillyer, and Shayrl Attkisson.  After Schmaler’s thug tendencies were well known, she was nurtured and promoted within the Thugocracy instead of being canned as any administration before this one would have done to her — Republican or Democrat.

Schmaler has since been appointed a Made Man of sorts, entering the rarefied private sector air of David Axelrod’s shop.

Schmaler’s story is typical of this gang.  Her shouting, threats, and rants at reporters would have rendered her unqualified to serve in the press shop of a state department of agriculture.

Leftists have always been like this – the sense of moral superiority, and the dismissal of critics as immoral. The thuggishness is natural because they believe that their plans can never fail because of their innate moral superiority. If their plans do fail, (e.g. – high minimum wage produces higher unemployment), it must be because some group of people is undermining them, and those people must be purged. It can never be that their plans are wrong and don’t produce the results they want. They have good intentions, and how could that not produce good results? Leftists are the same everywhere.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

53 college newspapers that endorsed Obama in 2008 decline to endorse him in 2012

If you haven’t voted yet, please go vote! There is still time, especially in central, mountain and western time zones. If you have voted already, here’s a nice article to reward you while we wait for the election results. And thank you for voting!

From the Daily Caller.

Excerpt:

Many college newspapers that endorsed Barack Obama for president in 2008 are not supporting his election again this year, another indication that the Obama enthusiasm that swept across campuses four years ago has faded.

A review conducted by The Daily Caller of campus publications indicates that at least 53 papers newspapers that endorsed Obama in 2008 have yet to endorse his candidacy again as Election Day approaches. TheDC arrived at this number by looking at 89 known papers that supported Obama four years ago.

[…]Obama — who won nearly every endorsement made by college newspapers in 2008 — is not as popular on campus as he was four years ago.

Forty-three school papers that endorsed Obama in 2008 tell TheDC that they have decided against endorsing any candidate in the 2012 presidential race.

In addition, 46 newspapers who endorsed Obama in 2008 have not only declined to endorse him again – they have actually endorsed Romney.

Excerpt:

Forty-six newspaper editorial boards that endorsed then-Senator Barack Obama in 2008 have decided instead to endorse Republican nominee Mitt Romney this year, according to a tally from the Republican National Committee.

The list of 46 includes The Des Moines Register, the Orlando Sentinel, Florida’s Sun Sentinel, the Wisconsin State Journal, the Houston Chronicle, The Tennessean, the Los Angeles Daily News, Newsday and the New York Daily News.

The American people still care about whether a President succeeds or fails. It is not just a popularity contest. Obama has failed to do what he promised to do. Now get out there and vote to have him sent home.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , , ,

What’s the best way to combat the trend toward “village atheism”

A village atheist is an atheist who is very convinced about his atheism but whose reasons for atheism are completely naive and superstitious, and who is completely unaware of the scholarly evidence for theism. Letitia wrote a post recently on her blog in which she expressed her concerns about the idea that the public may be trending towards village atheism, just because atheism is being presented as the most intelligent view in popular culture, and because Christians are not getting their scholarly arguments and evidences heard.

Excerpt:

While reflecting on his debate with Sam Harris and the audience questions that came after, Dr. William Lane Craig wrote the following about the makeup of the audience that night:

I wonder is something culturally significant is going on here. Several years ago, I asked the Warden at Tyndale House in Cambridge why it is that British society is so secular when Britain has such a rich legacy of great Christian scholars. He replied, “Oh, Christianity is not underrepresented among the intelligentsia. It’s the working classes which are so secular.” He explained that these folks are never exposed to Christian scholarship because of their lack of education. As a result there is a sort of pervasive, uninformed, village atheism among them. I wonder if something like this could be happening in the States. I was surprised to see the number of blue collar folks from the community buying Harris’ book and thanking him for all he has done. They didn’t seem to have any inkling that his views had just been systematically exposed as logically incoherent. The intelligentsia have almost universally panned Harris’ recent book (read the reviews!). Yet it is lapped up in popular culture. Wouldn’t it be amazing if unbelief became the possession mainly of the uneducated?

This comment causes my heart to sink. Personally, I like to think that I am fairly observant of the religious cultural shifts here in the U.S. and their bearing on what Christians should do to respond to them. However, I have to admit that Dr. Craig’s note above catches me a little off guard, even alarming to a degree as I realize what his observation, if truly symptomatic of an eve of a significant change, means for Christian apologists in this day and age. An inculcation of “New Atheism” among the blue collar/working class here would be a dramatic reversal of the religious landscape of America. I cannot help but feel that such a situation might be more “dismaying” than “amazing.”

[…]I have no doubt that the inculcation is taking place. It is being impressed upon the public through books by New Atheists like Sam Harris that are aimed on the popular level, both to adults and youth (e.g. Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials). In the public classroom, atheism is the default worldview in the disciplines of both the hard and social sciences. Atheism is marketed as the new neutral position in almost all of public literature, television, and many commercial media outlets. Atheists pronounce that atheism is the only viable alternative for fair-minded people once they have shed the evil “superstition” of theism and Christianity that has existed here since the Pilgrims brought their Bibles off the Mayflower. Pair the New Atheists’ media blitz of book tours and public appearances and the fruits of declining Christian influence over American culture, I suppose we should expect an eventual ‘atheism-of-the-masses’ to emerge.

She then finishes the post with three ideas on how to counter this trend: 1) Christian scholars should try to appear on television shows, 2) Christian scholars should try to submit opinion columns to newspapers, and 3) Christians who are prepared to discuss theology and apologetics should participate in public discussions. I’ll just point out that it is excellent for Christian women to be concerned about these things, and to come up with solutions to the problems they raise. We need more women like Letitia to be concerned about these things, and to come up with effective plans to do something about it. (You’ll recall that she has a conference coming up in Arizona where she will be speaking – so she has chips on the table).

She also posted her post on Facebook, and got a few interesting replies. I’ll just paste a few of them in anonymously.

Here’s one from P:

The culprit here is government-controlled education. Secular progressives control teacher certification, teacher and administrator education, curriculum construction, textbook writing and selection, and just about all curriculum selection. …Virtually everybody but the very wealthy are required to spend 12 years under this regime. The consequence is uniform inculcation of the young in America, from kindergarten to high school graduation, with the same ideas that we just heard come out of Sam Harris’ mouth.

That echoes my comments earlier about how Christians should support school choice and oppose a public school monopoly.

But there’s more from S:

[D]on’t you think we (the church) ought to be more supportive of our congregants who wish to pursue doctorate level work within their particular field of discipline? It seems that if we had a individuals …with full-on Christian worldviews who have risen to the highest levels of authority in places like the educational system, that they could make just as much impact as what is happening now.

And then I chimed in and recommended that the church bring more scholars to speak in the on issues of policy and apologetics, so that the congregants would have something to talk about with their neighbors, and so that the children would get ideas about what they could study in order to have an effective influence.

I would like to see churches turn to questions like 1) is Christianity true? 2) how do we know it’s true from science, philosophy and history? 3) which economic policies are the best for Christians to support? 4) how do you use evidence and arguments to convince other people to be pro-life and pro-traditional marriage? 5) why do Christians have so many rules about sex and relationships? 6) how do you respond to the arguments made by non-Christians? 7) what is the best way to prevent wars – disarmament or deterrence? 8) what should Christians think about secular fads like global warming and feminism? And so on.

When the church starts to become interesting again, by actually having lectures, debates and disagreements about what’s true, then people in the culture will take it seriously. Right now, I think we are too focused on not have debates, not pursuing truth, not making exclusive theological claims, not making moral judgments, and just putting on a show that will make people have happy feelings and a sense of community. Eventually, when people in church notice that there are no men in the church, and consequently no children in the church, then we may decide to try something else.

Filed under: Commentary, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Wintery Tweets

Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.

RSS Intelligent Design podcast

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.

RSS Evolution News

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.
Click to see recent visitors

  Visitors Online Now

Page views since 1/30/09

  • 4,694,241 hits

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,280 other followers

Archives

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,280 other followers

%d bloggers like this: