400-408 – Steve Lawson, Senior Pastor of Christ Fellowship Baptist Church in Mobile, Alabama, and visiting professor with R.C. Sproul's Ligonier Ministries. You've heard Steve the past two weeks on Renewing Your Mind at noon teaching on the Doctrine of Grace. His primary focus is the verse-by-verse exposition of God's Word, which has produced 18 books so far, ranging from commentaries on books of the Bible to biographies of John Calvin, Charles Spurgeon and other Christian leaders, to books on expository preaching. He's also on the Board of Directors of John MacArthur's Master's College and Seminary, where he also teaches expository preaching. His latest book is The Gospel Focus of Charles Spurgeon (Amazon).
413-423 – •• Calls – What does it mean to be a Christian? Can a "Christian" support murder? How about abortion? Can a "Christian" support adultery? How about homosexuality? Can a Christian support theft? How about stealing money from the haves and redistributing it to the have nots? Can a Christian covet and promote envy? How about promoting class warfare? Can a Christian deny the inerrancy of Scripture? How about picking and choosing pet verses? Can a Christian worship other gods? How about believe all religions are true?
(5X) Franklin Graham on CNN with Kyra Phillips on Wednesday (2/22/2012).
The political news cycle has been dominated by issues of faith this week. On Tuesday, the Rev. Franklin Graham ignited a fire storm following comments he made (or didn't make, for that matter) about President Barack Obama's Christian faith on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." During a Wednesday interview with CNN, he attempted to clarify these statements.
"Do you question the faith of our president?," host Kyra Phillips asked. The question, of course, reflected the same sentiment that was posed to the reverend the day before.
"Listen, the president has said that he is a Christian and we'll just leave it at that…Only God knows the heart of all of these candidates…as it comes down to the candidates, it's really the issues that are the issue here," Graham explained.
Then, the real element at the center of his opposition to President Obama emerged: Abortion.
"I cannot…vote for the president because of abortion," he explained. "He supports abortion and I just cannot support that. The other candidates are more in line with my views on this…"
Graham clearly felt the need to delve deeper. His comments, though they may remain unsavory to those who defend Obama and his stance on the issue, do provide greater insight into why the faith leader has had a difficult time overtly calling Obama a Christian.
"The president supports [abortion]. He's going against what the Bible teaches," Graham explained. "The Bible is very clear about life and where life begins and I believe that the president is going against what the holy scriptures teach."
Of course, there were a few awkward moments, particularly when Phillips said, "it sounds like you're getting political here…it sounds like you're a Republican in preacher's clothing."
443-452 – Calls –
458-508 – Gene Del Vecchio, is an audience research specialist who consultants with studios and entertainment companies, and he joins us to talk about the Academy Awards and his new book Creating Blockbusters (creatingblockbusters.com). He did a survey to find out why people aren't going to the movies and found out they just don't like the product – the stories are boring, they lack humor, have little suspense, are often confusing and don't have characters that people can relate to. So why do so many of these films get made? Because Hollywood is product, not market driven – studios make movies they want to make, and then figure out the market to sell them to. As a result, only a few films make any profit, but those that do carry the entire industry.
• 70% of movies lose money, 80% of TV shows get cancelled in the first season, and just 5% of all movies provide almost 100% of the studio budgets.
• Dave Berg (Washington Times, 2/24/2012) BERG: Academy awards the unpopular and unprofitable. Hollywood just doesn't care what Americans want.
• 2012 Oscar Nominee List (pdf).
512-523 – Gene Del Vecchio,
528-539 – Gene Del Vecchio,
544-554 – Gene Del Vecchio,
558-608 – • Daniel Halper (Weekly Standard, 2/23/2012) Chart: 'America's Per Capita Government Debt Worse Than Greece'. The office of Senator Jeff Sessions, ranking member on the Senate Budget Committee, sends along this chart. Spain ($18,395), Portugal ($19,989), France ($33,491), Greece ($38,937), Italy ($40,475), Italy ($40,475), Ireland ($43,887), and America ($44,215).
• Jeffrey Anderson (Weekly Standard, 2/14/2012) The Cost of Obama.
// Adding all of this up, deficit spending during Obama's four years in the White House (based on his own figures) will be an estimated $5.170 trillion — or $5,170,000,000,000.00.
To help put that colossal sum of money into perspective, if you take our deficit spending under Obama and divide it evenly among the roughly 300 million American citizens, that works out to just over $17,000 per person — or about $70,000 for a family of four.
The previous record for most deficit spending during a presidency was set by President George W. Bush (see table 1.3 in the White House's Historic Tables). During Bush's 8-year administration, total deficit spending was $3.402 trillion. That's a truly extraordinary and reckless sum. It's also $1.768 trillion less than deficit spending in just four years under Obama. Per year, deficits under Bush averaged $425 billion. Per year, deficits under Obama (according to his own numbers) will average $1.293 trillion — or more than three times as much.
// In 2009, just 50.5% of Americans paid any income tax to the federal government - the lowest proportion in at least half a century.
151.7 million U.S. citizens (49.5%) paid no federal income tax in 2009, according to figures compiled by the Heritage Foundation, a right-wing think tank.
In 1984, the middle of the Reagan era, 85% of Americans paid federal income tax, meaning just 34.8 million people did not.
The decreasing number of taxpayers threatens government revenues, and could also cause resentment from those who believe that welfare recipients are taking money out of the economy.
Another finding by the Heritage Foundation shows that 21.8% of U.S. citizens receive financial assistance from the federal government.
This means that 67.3 million people - a record high - are 'dependent on the federal government', excluding government employees who rely on the public sector for their salaries.
The conjunction of fewer taxpayers with higher welfare payments has led to intense pressure on the public purse, with the national deficit running at $1.3 trillion per year.
• The Heritage Foundation argues that the reduction in the number of taxpayers will create an electorate dominated by non-taxpayers, who will always support higher taxes and spending because their own money is not at stake.
• Weekly Standard (2/24/2012) Geithner: 'Privilege of Being an American' Is Why Rich Need Higher Taxes.
(:26) Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, speaking this morning on CNBC (2/24/2012) – "That's the kind of balance you need," said Geithner. "Why is that the case? Because if you don't try to generate more revenues through tax reform, if you don't ask, you know, the most fortunate Americans to bear a slightly larger burden of the privilege of being an American, then you have to -- the only way to achieve fiscal sustainability is through unacceptably deep cuts in benefits for middle class seniors, or unacceptably deep cuts in national security."
612-623 – Calls – Would it be "fair" if the 50.5% majority made the 49.5% minority into permanent tax slaves?
• TAX BURDENS –
The top 1% provide ⅓ of federal tax revenue, the top 3% provide ½, and the top 10% provide 70%.
>$1M (200,000 people) = 20%,
1% ($380,354) = 38%,
3% (? ) = 50%,
5% ($159,619) = 59%
10% ($113,799) = 70%,
25% ($67,280) = 96%,
50% ($33,048) = 97.3%.
Bottom ½ provide 2.7% of all federal tax.
628-639 – Calls
639 – Don't miss our upcoming KKLA Faith Night at Staples on Thursday March 15th to watch Blake Griffin, Chris Paul and the Clippers take on the Phoenix Suns. Tickets are only $18 through kkla.com, keyword "Clippers."
644-654 – Calls
• Daniel Halper (Weekly Standard, 2/24/2012) California Asks Judges: Gay or Straight?
• Buzzfeed (2/23/2012) Exclusive: Marco Rubio's Mormon Roots. As a child, he was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Ticket balancing is a great tradition, and this could affect Romney's Vice Presidential calculation.
• SF Gate (2/23/2012) Global Warming Made First Tiny Horses Even Smaller, Study Finds. Is global warming equinephobic? Why were only horses effected?
• Peggy Noonan (2/24/2012) Obama, Above the Fray for Now. Republican squabbling inspires new confidence in the president's supporters.
• Dorothy Rabinowitz (WSJ, 2/24/2012) Democrats Are Praying for a Santorum Nomination. His long record of statements on religious and social issues are of a sort that large sectors of the American public find unpalatable. Ms. Rabinowitz is a member of The Journal's editorial board.
• Kimberly Strassel (WSJ, 2/24/2012) Moralizer in Chief? Americans are open to candidates of faith. Less so to any hint they might impose their moral views if they're elected.
• NRO Editors (2/23/2012) The Devil and Rick Santorum.