If everything's a scandal, this definitely is
Have faith, and have hope, this Christmas season
It’s a scandal that a gallon of milk in Atlanta has gone from $3.39 to $4.38 as of November’s USDA Milk Prices Report. The fact that the government does care enough to publish the price of milk is rather comforting, though isn’t it? The most expensive milk in the continental U.S. is apparently in Kansas City: $6.21 for a gallon! I don’t know what makes KC such a hotbed of dairy deprivation (not compared to, say, Honolulu where milk sells for around $8 or $9 a gallon), but possibly it’s because they tend to eat their cows versus milking them.
People care more about the price of milk, and the availability of good jobs to pay for it, than they care about the state of a faraway country at war for its existence. By that I mean TPUSA’s version of America where Kari Lake won but was robbed, and godless pronoun-enforcers are on the cusp of evicting the gun-wielding Jesus from our churches. The rhetoric coming out of Arizona differs from Putin’s March 2022 “Z” rally only in the language spoken. The message is almost identical. That’s a scandal.
It’s a scandal that Disney charges for admission to its theme parks, then charges more not to wait in interminable lines for the attractions. People care more about not being able to get their Walt Disney World or Disneyland trip this year than what’s in Donald Trump’s tax returns. They’re more interested in whether Bob Iger or Bob Chapek is in control of the House of Mouse than if Kevin McCarthy will be the next Speaker of the House.
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People care more about having a real holiday time together than whether Dr. Fauci covered up the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic to keep his agency’s involvement in experiments at the Wuhan Institute of Virology out of the public eye. People don’t want to mask up—except some do—and people don’t want to get endless vaccination shots—except some do. Honestly, we’d rather forget that COVID-19 exists—but it still does.
It’s a huge scandal that our Congress is about to pass a $1.7 trillion omnibus budget bill, chock full of 4,155 pages of pork, spending, and secret codicils that practically nobody except the staffers and lobbyists who crafted them in the flames of the Sammath Naur. Quoting National Review: “During the pandemic, federal debt eclipsed the value of the nation’s annual economic output for the first time since World War II.” We owe more than we make, which anyone will tell you, is a really bad thing.
Our national entitlements exceed the value of the trust funds supposedly set aside to pay them. Of course, these funds are just props, mere shadows because all the money goes to the same place in the government’s coffers. Within the decade, the Medicare Trust Fund will be empty, and a few years after, the Social Security Trust will follow. But the government has become the Bread & Circuses department of handing out folding money to everyone.
Congress is set to spend about one day debating this great scandal, then they will all go home to tell us not to worry, because it’s all under control.
Rep. Thomas Massie (the “no” guy), skipped Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s speech to Congress, reportedly along with Sens. Josh Hawley, Mike Lee, and Rand Paul. These Republicans have been skeptical of our military and humanitarian aid to Ukraine, which is the real country fighting for its existence, as Moscow fights for Russia’s relevance in the world. Putin has vowed to increase military spending to improve his ability to make war—presumably to advance the interests of conservative, religious Russians over the godless liberals in the West. How far we’ve come since godless communists ruled Russia against the holy alliance of God-fearing Americans.
It’s a scandal that Americans would want to strip Ukraine of the means to defend itself, and give Putin the advantage of time and money, which eventually would defeat the will of Ukrainians if not for the most productive economy on earth standing behind them.
Most Americans don’t care about these scandals because it’s Christmastime, and we just want to find the coolest gifts to give, and have a normal holiday like it was 2019 again.
There’s one more scandal we mustn’t ignore. The day coming Sunday celebrates a young girl, betrothed but unmarried, who carried a child. She could have been stoned, by the law, she was an adulteress. But a dream came to Joseph, an angel testified to the truth of Mary’s story, that she was carrying a child sent from the Holy Spirit of God, to bring Emmanuel—God with us—to the world.
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end.
Hundreds of years before the manger, the prophet Isaiah offered hope to the nation of Israel, and indeed the hope of all the world. It was a scandal that Yeshua—Jesus—was born in a cave meant for animals, and swaddled in a manger. The government was against him. Herod tried to kill him. The religious authorities, 33 years later, did have him killed by the Romans. But his life wasn’t taken, it was given. The scandal, then as today, is that we place more faith and trust in institutions that can’t fulfill their promises than in the promises of God.
Have faith, and in it, have hope this Christmas.
Enjoy my favorite Christmas song, Downhere performing “How Many Kings.”
"Honestly, we’d rather forget that COVID-19 exists—but it still does."
Had my first positive test for the virus Sunday night. Nuked my Christmas plans, but gave me a decent excuse to level my Night Elf Druid up to level 70 in World of Warcraft, so I can play a few past expansions' content on Easy Mode.
(Before anyone worries - I've had about as easy of a go at COVID as anyone could reasonably expect. Three cheers to vaxxes and boosters, and natural selection doing its thing and making the virus less fatal so it can reproduce more readily without killing its hosts.)
Thank you Steve. The world and especially this country is a confusing place these days. Hypocrisy is one thing we never seem to lack. Now even the word “American” is hate speech according to Stanford. These politicians who think standing with Trump and his maga troops is more important than the human lives being taken in Ukraine make me ill and so sad. But they can’t have my joy! My hope is in that little baby born in a manger, not men interested in filling their pockets and keeping their jobs. Milk has been $4.99 and up a gallon here in Miami for months. 18 eggs came down from $8.99 to $7.29. And the next person that tells me it is ALL Biden’s fault had better turn and run. God has a plan, I just need the patience to wait on Him.