Thursday, January 15

Updates from down South

Greetings from the south side of the equator! And yes, a lot warmer place than wild Wisconsin. My brother and I arrived in Ecuador on the 6th of January and traveled by bus down from the capital city of Quito down through the mountains for 11 hours to arrive at the city of Cuenca. We are living with my other brother who is living down here for nine months or so and a single friend.

This last week we have helped out with the grade school which has a spiritual emphasis week. I have helped my brother with teaching the grade school kids some songs and bible verses. I am also working in the grade school with some of the English classes teaching them some English songs and doing some bible memory work.

There are so many dear friends down here. They are such a blessing to see how they live there lives and how they are seeking to spread the love of God in this city. It is for selfish reasons almost that I come down here. I am always so encouraged and blessed during the visits.

This last weekend we had guinea pig (a specialty here in Ecuador) and this coming weekend we are going to the mountains to catch some wild bulls. Below is a picture of me with a guinea pig. My brother also has a bunch more pictures that you can see at his blog here.

Sunday, January 4

Israel and Hamas

The background and story. To be well informed read it all.

The big picture is obvious. The current conflict is not really about
the classic Arab-Israeli process, which can resume between Israel, the
Palestinian Authority and the Arab League anytime it is not obstructed.
The Gaza fight is about Iran’s confrontation with Israel, and perhaps
with the U.S. globally. A global strategic reading leads us to conclude
that — just as we saw in Lebanon in 2006 -Tehran is pulling the strings
and very smartly. Timing the Hamas end to the cease fire between two
American presidencies in Washington and just before the Israeli and
Palestinian elections, the Mullahs thought they would drag Israel into
the Gaza battle on an Iranian timetable, triggering a “street” show of
anger, boosted by the jihadi propaganda machine in the region with all
the usual ramifications in the West. The astute Iranian move is to drag
Israel enough into Gaza’s mud to indict it internationally so that any
future Israeli strikes at Iran’s nuclear program will be seen as
catastrophic. Tehran is calculating the minutia hoping Hamas will win
at the end of the day, and that the Obama administration will begin its
“talks” with Iran from an inferior position (since Israel will be
blamed for the violence not the jihadists in Gaza). But the game has
lots of risks, including the possibility that Hamas may lose its
ability to be a military event maker after this campaign is over.

For the latest on MN recount

From the WSJ. All we are looking for is blind justice. And where are all those "stolen 2000 Florida election" folks right now?

Minnesotans like to think that their state isn't like New Jersey or Louisiana, and typically it isn't. But we can't recall a similar recount involving optical scanning machines that has changed so many votes, and in which nearly every crucial decision worked to the advantage of the same candidate. The Coleman campaign clearly misjudged the politics here, and the apparent willingness of a partisan like Mr. Ritchie to help his preferred candidate, Mr. Franken. If the Canvassing Board certifies Mr. Franken as the winner based on the current count, it will be anointing a tainted and undeserving Senator.

What makes you love your machine?

So true. And why I hate Norton Antivirus.

"We've all experienced the full range of emotions while using gadgets,
PCs, phones and software. At one end of the spectrum is a kind of
thrilling joy, where something "just works." At the other end, there is
a consuming rage. The amount of time your emotional state spends at one
end of the spectrum rather than the other is the one and only thing
that determines how much you "love" the product."