Thursday, March 31, 2011

Exciting Archeological Find in Jordan: Earliest Christian Writings?

Resurrection: Son of God Jesus triumphs over d...                                    Image via Wikipedia
We interrupt this jaded, cynical Canadian election campaign for exciting news out of Jordan brought to you by Fox News (fair and balanced) and the BBC (fairly unbalanced).  Just kidding. No, I mean it.
They could be the earliest Christian writing in existence, surviving almost 2,000 years in a Jordanian cave. They could, just possibly, change our understanding of how Jesus was crucified and resurrected, and how Christianity was born. (*)
"It is a breathtaking thought that we have held these objects that might have been held by the early saints of the Church."

Yes, it would be. I once visited the Freer Gallery of Art in Washington and asked to see the ancient New Testament manuscript they have there. The curator brought it out. It was exciting to see it -- wormholes and all, and to think that a brother from the 4th cc. (or whenever it was) had lovingly copied this manuscript of the holy writ which has come down to us today as the good news that God appeared, was seen of men, died, rose, and was taken up into heaven.

"Little is known of the movement after Jesus' crucifixion until the letters of Paul several decades later, and they illuminate the westward spread of Christianity outside the Jewish world."

Little is known? Wrong on two counts.

We have the book of Acts, written by Luke the historian, who diligently sought out sources -- it was written mere decades after the events in question, during the living memory of participants, and tells the story from Jesus' resurrection and ascension onwards to Paul's imprisonment in Rome -- including the growth of the Jewish church at Jerusalem. Want a "key" to reading the book of Acts -- notice the first time that Luke refers to the gathering of believing Jewish saints as "the church".

Plus, Paul's letters were not written "several decades later". His earliest writings date to about 50 AD. With the crucifixion occurring around 30 AD., this means two decades at the most. And, his writings tell the "back story" of his conversion, meeting with the leaders in Jerusalem, etc., meaning that they take us back to within two or three years of the resurrection -- one scholar, Gary Habermas, suggesting they take us back to within about a year of the resurrection.

The idea that we know little or nothing is a myth. Perhaps what the scholars mean is "we don't have any account that would provide us with a purely naturalistic account of the events, i.e., an account where Jesus dies and stays dead but Christianity somehow emerges anyway".

"Change our understanding of how Christianity began?" Not likely. Do Christians have anything to fear about ancient texts being uncovered? No. Not a thing. Our faith is based on eye-witness testimony of reliable witnesses whose associates faithfully recorded their teachings which have been preserved for us today. We also have the present-day witness of the holy Spirit.

Make sure you click on at least one news link to see an image of these amazing credit-card-sized metal books.
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"Hide The Decline": The Al Gore Post-Snow Global Warming Apocalypse

The Sierra's Mills Creek cirque (center) is on...                                          Image via Wikipedia
Remember the AGW predictions of snowless winters (or, was it winterless snows)?

Well, it's happening!!!

The headlines tell the tale of apocalyptic woe.

"Near-record Lack Of Sierra snow good news catastrophic to parched California."

Now do you believe??!!

[Hide-the-decline editting by The Ball Bounces, in the interests of good science saving humanity.]


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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

May Day! May Day! Green Party Leader Not Invited to the Prom!!!

Elizabeth May - Chinook Stampede BreakfastImage by ItzaFineDay via Flickr
Green leader Elizabeth May says a broadcast consortium’s decision to exclude her from a televised leaders’ debate is “breathtakingly anti-democratic" [this from a leader whose party doesn't have a single seat in the House of Commons].
She is calling on Canadians to rise up and to register their disapproval.
“It’s very important that in the next few hours that Canadians from coast to coast express their concerns,” May told the Victoria Times Colonist. “Otherwise, the old-boys’ club will win.
I hope you are all as outraged by this as I am. If you are, there's only one way to express your displeasure. Send me, The Ball Bounces, five dollars NOW!!!  Otherwise, the "old boys" win, if you'll pardon the ageist-sexist expression of Green Party Leader Elizabeth May.

Plus, don't forget to vote in the latest Ball Bounces poll -- express your outrage!!!!
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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Has "Let There Be Dark" Earth Hour Lost Its Mojo?

BERLIN, GERMANY - MARCH 26:  The Brandenburg G...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
"Earth Hour may be losing steam as novelty wears off".

Or maybe it's because people are wisening up?

I was so apathetic this year, I didn't even bother going around turning all my lights on.

How did you not observe Earth Hour?
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Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Decline and Fall of American English, And Stuff

Official language status of the states in the ...                                    Image via Wikipedia
A good article: The Decline and Fall of American English, And Stuff.

And that's the way, like, you know, the Ball bounces, you know what I mean?
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Friday, March 25, 2011

The US is Losing Its Marbles

Seal of the United States Department of Justice                                Image via Wikipedia
BERKELEY, Ill. — Safoorah Khan had taught middle school math for only nine months in this tiny Chicago suburb when she made an unusual request. She wanted three weeks off for a pilgrimage to Mecca.
The school district, faced with losing its only math lab instructor during the critical end-of-semester marking period, said no. Khan, a devout Muslim, resigned and made the trip anyway.
Justice Department lawyers examined the same set of facts and reached a different conclusion: that the school district’s decision amounted to outright discrimination against Khan. They filed an unusual lawsuit, accusing the district of violating her civil rights by forcing her to choose between her job and her faith.
Wait until the first Christian objects to performing a marriage between two males or two females -- we'll see how far backwards Justice is willing to bend to accommodate the Christian.

Why does the word Berkelely seem to bring out nuttiness in people?

I understand the Eagle is considered haraam in Islam; kind of insensitive for the US Justice Department to feature it on their seal; a bit like rubbing it in, don't you think?

And that's the way the haraam and getting haraamier Ball bounces.


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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

New BallBounces Poll: Conservatives Fail To Eavesdrop; Election Imminent

Michael Ignatieff                      Image via Wikipedia
Here's the latest poll question: Michael Ignatieff says, "This is a government that doesn't seem to be listening to what Canadian families are telling us." Do you agree with Michael that the Conservatives should eavesdrop on the Liberals?

Vote early, and vote often!
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Monday, March 21, 2011

The Perfect Canadian Headline

Color line contacts in North AmericaImage by color line via Flickr
The perfect Canadian headline. Here.

(Hint: it has something to do with Quebec.)

Friday, March 18, 2011

"Train Your Man Like Your Dog"

Sexual equality symbol                    Image via Wikipedia
"Train your man like your dog" - cute!
It’s the latest offering in a troubling genre: Books that declare women can train their men like dogs, the goal being a shiny engagement ring.
There’s a litany of them: Why Men are Like Dogs and How We Can Love Them; Men Are Like Dogs, Women are Like Cats: A Guide to Finding Love in this Dog Eat Dog World; How to Make Your Man Behave in 21 Days or Less Using the Secrets of Successful Dog Trainers. (That book’s author, life coach Karen Salmansohn, failed to make an obedient pooch out of her fiancĂ©, who took her to the cleaners last year.)
Now let's change a word and try it again:

"Train your woman like your dog" - disgusting, sexist, promotes violence against women, is a word-crime under Canada's human rights regime.  Or, in the words of Justin Trudeau, "totally unacceptable".

I guess sexual equality has not been achieved. I suspect it was never the goal.

For the article, along with a "cute" picture, go here.


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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Now Ignatieff Steps In It

Michael Ignatieff at the Lakeshore Santa Claus...                                 Image via Wikipedia
Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff said: “Let’s not play word games with this stuff . . . There’s no such thing as an honour killing, there’s only killing and it’s a crime everywhere,” he said.
No such thing as an honour killing? Really? Tell that to Pakistan.  Or to the Muslim guy I spent an evening with in Bombay who said if his daughter fooled around he would have to kill her to protect his family's honour. (This while drinking beer in his hotel room where no-one could see him).  Let's see: it wouldn't be a crime of passion (France); it wouldn't be a "hate crime" (Canada); it wouldn't be a crime of murderous rage, or killing during a criminal act; so it must be an... honour killing.

Presumably the next time a pederast or homosexual or Christian is killed in Canada for being a pederast or homosexual or Christian we will hear this quote from the Liberal leader: “Let’s not play word games with this stuff . . . There’s no such thing as a hate crime, there’s only killing and it’s a crime everywhere”.

I think the Liberals are just "making it up" as they go along.

And that's the way the I'm-glad-I'm-not-a-Liberal Ball bounces.
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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Justin Trudeau: Another Reason I'm Glad I'm Not A Liberal

Justin Trudeau supporting Gerard Kennedy at th...                                          Image via Wikipedia
Justin Trudeau is "uncomfortable" with the Conservatives calling honor killings barbaric. He would prefer they avoid perjoratives.

He's uncomfortable? Imagine how those on the receiving end of an honour killing feel. Imagine how those who live in perpetual fear of being on the receiving end of an honour killing feel.

When called up on it, he retreats by saying he got tangled in semantic weeds, retracts his comment, and offers up an "if anyone has interpreted my remarks" it's-really-all-your-fault non-apology. Oh, so it's all just a matter of semantics?  What semantic weeds, exactly?

Then he says what he was really trying to get at was the cynicism of the Conservatives.

Memo to Liberals: your endless, year-in, year-out ad hominems and strawmen are getting tiresome. And your baseless accusations of cynicism are themselves rooted in a rancid cynicism Conservatives wouldn't stoop to. How stupid do you think the electorate really are?

Oh.

And that's the way the impassioned Ball bounces.
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Monday, March 14, 2011

Why Is There No Looting in Japan?

Two maiko performing in Gion.                      Image via Wikipedia
All cultures are equal -- it's one of the bedrock delusions assumptions that form the foundation of The New Canada™ and its glorious embrace of multiculturalism.

So, Why is there no looting in Japan?

For more on this perplexing issue, see Mark Steyn's letters. (Letter-writers to Mark's Mailbox are often better than columnists!)

Photo on right: two Japanese women, actively contemplating a night of looting after the gig.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Whatever Happened to Global Warming?™

BERLIN - JANUARY 23: A snowman is pictured wit...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
I used to get excoriated by left-wing scientific-rationalist types for doubting the scientific claims of global warming. My denialism was attributed to me being a fundamentalist Christian head-in-the-sand science-denying fool.

Haven't heard a peep from them since ClimateGate. Not a single comment.

One of the Big Guns of Global Warming™ predicted “2 to 4″ degrees warming from 2001-2010.

Let's see how that turned out.

He who sits in the heavens laughs.

Have a good day, fellow fools.

h/t ClimateDepot.
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Wednesday, March 09, 2011

“We are being persecuted and killed here by Muslims”

Image representing New York Times as depicted ...        Image via CrunchBase
Muslims are persecuting and killing Christians in Egypt.
“We are being persecuted and killed here by Muslims,” said Bishoi Edmund, 24, a protester from the largely Christian neighborhood of Shoubra....
The attack against the church in Soul is said to be the result of tensions surrounding an interfaith love affair.
A church gets burned down because of "tensions" surrounding an interfaith "love affair"? Gee, I wonder who burned the place of worship down? And Christians had the audacity to complain and protest? And then Muslims show up and eleven people die?

For an example of biased reporting of the killings and the events leading up to them, see the NYT article, here. It amounts to the usual "let's just blame both sides equally and call it a day, shall we?".  I'll let you sort through the various points and ways the NYT obfuscate and downplay the Muslim role in church-burning and fatal protests.

Christians are getting squeezed out -- often literally to death -- of the Middle East, while the West clips its nails and wonders if it needs a manicure.

Oh yeah, and worries terribly about possible western discrimination against muslims.

Resolve.

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Tuesday, March 08, 2011

"Don't Worry, We'll Pump More"

Cover of "Titanic (Three-Disc Special Col...              Cover via Amazon
"Don't worry, we'll pump more" -- Drudge headline (link to linked article)

"Don't worry, we'll print more" -- Quantitative Easing I (US economic strategy for dealing with economic doldrums

"Don't worry, we'll print more more" -- Quantitative Easing II (US economic strategy for keeping stock market buoyant)

"Don't worry, we'll print more more more" QE III, circa 2011-12

"Don't worry, be happy" -- Theme song of the Titanic, the last days of the Third Reich, and the USA circa 2013

Can this possibly end well?
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I Like Sarah Palin -- There, I've Said It

Sarah Palin at the Time 100 Gala, in Manhattan...                            Image via Wikipedia
I like Sarah Palin. There, I've said it.

She may or may not be presidential material; that's not the point. I'm sure she's learning, developing; she may be ready for the presidency at some point (and couldn't possibly be less competent and capable than the current President Obiwankenobiobama).

Plus, as the linked article makes clear, she makes liberal women's heads explode.

I like Sarah Palin. So does feminist knee-cappin' Barbara Kay.

(I like BK, too.)

And that's the way the conservative-lovin' Ball bounces.

PS -- if you are American, and unfamiliar with Barbara Kay, check her out!
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Monday, March 07, 2011

New Poll: What should you do if a cash machine overpays?

Nice ATM                                 Image via Wikipedia
Don't miss the Ball Bounces latest poll: what should you do if a cash machine overpays?

If you're a Carleton University student (see below), you keep it -- and tell your friends.

I once got a 10 dollar bill where it should have been a five. I went to the bank to pay back the 5. It caused a flap. It would have cost the bank more than $5 to "fix" the problem. I think in the end they let me keep it.

But I have no doubt I did the right thing in reporting it.

It's amazing how "do unto others (as you would have them do unto you)" and "love your neighbor" helps clarify moral situations. If a man is pursuing goodness, who wouldn't love the gospel? Who wouldn't love the Christ of the gospels?

And it sure beats "it's not what's right or wrong, it's what you can get away with" -- which is where our post-Christian Canadian culture seems to be heading.
 
And that's the way the I'm up $5 Ball bounces.
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Saturday, March 05, 2011

Quote of the Day: "When did the saying of a prayer by a Christian become a fineable offence"

Distributing copies of the Canadian Charter of...                       Image via Wikipedia
An excerpt from today's National Post (what, you don't have a subscription?!):
When did the saying of a prayer by a Christian become a fineable offence — in a country endowed with what I now laughingly think of as a Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The mayor of Saguenay — God save him for a gentleman — is fighting this ludicrous and offensive decision.
You can be sure that if Saguenay had some 50-year-old service station about to be torn down, or someone wanted to raze an old henhouse, there’d be howls of “desecrating our culture,” of “obliterating the area’s heritage” and “disrespecting our past.” But beyond old buildings, in the far more profound, more deeply infused area of religious thought and cultural practice, any “remnants” of the past are to be strip-mined to benefit the whims of political corrections and its tribunal czars.
We Canadians are who we are because of our past, our intellectual, social and religious origins. Our cohesion and coherence as a nation today depends equally in some large measure on knowing and respecting where we came from, the beliefs that have, and in many case still do, animate us. Defend this part of our heritage with a greater ferocity than any building or landmark, or we will become a nation of fads and hollow gestures.
To some degree, alas, we already have.
Rex, you just keep getting better and better.

My Canada includes Rex Murphy.
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Integrity Commission? What Integrity Commission?

President's Advisory Panel for Federal Tax ReformImage via Wikipedia
"Disgraced integrity commission’s departure package tops $500,000"

This headline drips with irony. An integrity commissioner fired or dismissed for incompetence should have the, er, integrity, to decline a HALF MILLION DOLLARS OF TAXPAYERS' MONEY!

The good news is, the government must have lots of money to be doing this.

The bad news is, IT'S OUR MONEY THEY'RE WASTING!  (I have no idea why I'm writing in all caps today -- it may be a medical condition -- are there government funds available to study this -- if so, mail to BallBounces, Toronto, Canada.)

Speaking of the Integrity Commission, is there a single BallBounces reader out there who had even heard of this government entity, let alone benefited from its services which we are all funding?
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Friday, March 04, 2011

Canadian University Student Ethics 2011: "Why wouldn't you, right?"

Laundry in the river in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.                               Image via Wikipedia
Here's the set-up to this story.
All students pay for laundry by swiping their student card at the room's payment machine, then punching in the number of the laundry machine they used.
But some students discovered if they told the payment machine they used one specific machine, you wouldn't get billed due to a computer glitch. Soon, every student who knew about the trick only ever "used" that machine, but were washing clothes in whatever machine was available.  CBC.
"As a student you just gotta kind of go for the cheapest route. And if that comes down to kind of screwing the laundry machine for free laundry machine services … then of course why wouldn't you, right?"
Why wouldn't you indeed. Like, maybe because it's a form of theft involving dishonesty? (It is one thing to use a machine that erroneously does not charge you. It is another thing to use another machine and dishonestly enter in the other machine code to avoid payment.)

"It was fun, it was just cheap," said James Salmon, a second-year student who used "the trick" every week.

Not a single Carleton student among the thousands who used "the trick" displayed the honesty or "love your neighbour" ethic that is a hallmark of practiced Christianity -- not a single one.

"Love your neighbor" is an expansive commandment; it applies not only to the person standing in front of you, but to the unseen person who has provided a service, or produced a song or movie, to corporations, and to owners of machines that provide a service or dispense a product.

"Love your neighbor" - easy to agree to; difficult to live out in practice.

Update: Meanwhile, in Japan...
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Thursday, March 03, 2011

Pakistani Christian Official Martyred By "You Know Who"

The coat of arms of Pakistan displays the nati...                           Image via Wikipedia
ISLAMABAD, March 2, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Pakistan’s only Christian government minister, Shahbaz Bhatti, has been shot dead by Muslim extremists in apparent reprisal for opposing the nation’s “blasphemy law,” according to international media reports.
Bhatti, who was the Minister for Minorities, was driving to work in the capital city of Islamabad today when gunmen sprayed his car with bullets, killing him. Leaflets were left at the scene warning others that the same fate would await them if they opposed the blasphemy law, a measure that critics say is used to persecute religious minorities.  Reuters reports that the Pakistani Taliban have taken responsibility for the murder.
Previously people have been murdered for suggesting Islam is a violent religion. Apparently part of being an Islamist means your inner irony-detector is set to "off".

LifeSiteNews.com is a good site for conservative, pro-life news.
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Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Boxcutters on Board

ARLINGTON, VA - DECEMBER 30:  Transportation S...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
A passenger managed to waltz past JFK's ramped-up security gantlet with three boxcutters in his carry-on luggage -- easily boarding an international flight while carrying the weapon of choice of the 9/11 hijackers, sources told The Post yesterday....
The TSA spokeswoman Davis insisted that the traveling public was not at risk.
If boxcutters on board an aircraft do not put the public at risk, the TSA should  remove them from the list of prohibited objects and stop looking for them.  Why is it whenever there's a security breach the TSA's standard response is always "the traveling public was not at risk"?


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"... nothing intellectually compelling or challenging.. bald assertions coupled to superstition... woefully pathetic"