2009 Predictions

As events unfold throughout the year, I do my best to reflect how they have fulfilled my beginning of the year predictions.  That said, there are a few recent events that I found noteworthy.

First, there was the recent terror plans in New York City and Denver that seemed to have been foiled, at least for now.  I had predicted that this year there would probably be an attempt (not that wild a guess, really).  I also Twittered about the likelihood of one upcoming soon merely weeks ago.    There is a good article about the recent situation here.

Second, although I did not put this as one of my points in this year’s predictions, one of the things I have been discussing at great length is that the big social policy debate of the coming years will be on the issue of assisted suicide.  This will be less aimed at terminal disease pain relief, and more about the elderly.  Unfortunately, I haven’t written much about it on here.  Last week, Newsweek’s cover story, “The Case for Killing Granny,” advocates this position in a way that I could not have imagined (and still can’t believe).  As if on cue, the Brits are following right along, according to this Reuters report-Ryan

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Going Digital

I’ve been watching the slew of PSA’s and “news” stories about the life-altering switch to Digital TV this Friday, and doing a lot of thinking.  Today, I heard on the radio that state lawmakers are “concerned” that too many households have not yet gotten their digital converter boxes, and are scrambling to figure out how to help.  I sat incredulous.

A year ago, everyone was scrambling to get the public educated and prepared for the February 17th, 2009 switch.  February came and went, with the Federal government realizing that this was too much for the public to handle.  A Popular Mechanics article detailed the government fears, and estimated that the government had spend $1.5 billion on helping the public make this switch.  This includes 33 million vouchers for essentially free converter boxes.  This was as of May, 2008.  These numbers have most assuredly risen substantially since then.

All of this seems so nice of the government.  We are so blessed to live in a land where our right to sit on our rears watching morally and intellectually degrading junk is supported by $1.5 billion in tax dollars.  This is especially generous of Uncle Sam…er….me, the taxpayer, considering our multi-trillion dollar deficit.

It has been said that the people often get the government they deserve.  Well, if indeed our priority is in having TV over a functioning and solvent government, then indeed we have succeeded.  But, if that is the case our society isn’t worth fixing.

But for a long time I have been bothered by more than the financial aspects of this.  We have had two years of bouncing cartoons explaining the Digital TV change.  Yet, mark my words, there will be people who on Friday will wake up and start screaming that they don’t know what happened.  They will shower, head out the door, and pick up a converter box at Best Buy before going home.  If the government had done nothing but allow the newspapers and TV news to report on it, the same thing would have happened.  The TV networks would have done their best to make sure everyone knows.  More people might have not been ready, but those people would quickly figure out what to do to fix their problem.

These same households that spend hundreds of dollars on X-boxes for their children would have gone out and bought $100 converter boxes, and if they couldn’t afford it, they would have done without for a couple months.  If people value their TV, they would have figured out a way.

I realize that had the government not done what they did, there would have been a whole lot of complaining.  In World War 2 people went without buying new tires or panty hose for years, and now we need the government to buy us TV gear, all the while Washington is boring from our grand children’s pocketbooks.

I wish our people deserved better.  Right now, I’m not so sure.

-Ryan

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A Brief Update

I’ve taken a brief hiatus from blogging, due to the two craziest weeks in recent memory. After the conference in Galveston, I have had a house guest, a Mother’s Day sermon, the biggest youth event of the year, some big changes to our church program, a house guest, twice as much work for the youth group, a coffee house at church, and did I mention a house guest?

There were other things too, but these were the most pressing.

In the middle of all of this, I decided that blogging was just one of those activities that I had to put on hold. I also have a mountain of laundry (some still packed from my Galveston trip). Next week things will slow down again, and it will be back to the regularly scheduled program.

In the meantime, enjoy this Video Infection:

Internet Evangelism Day -April 26th

The other day I got a comment from Tony from InternetEvangelismDay.com. I usually am very skeptical about people who try to sneak link-spam into my blogs, and I tend to be pretty heavy handed with the comment approval. I checked out the site just for kicks-and-giggles, and was quite impressed with what I saw. Their site is a veritable menagerie of tools and helps for churches planning to use their Internet ministry effectively. At the core of their plan is to make April 26th a day dedicated to Internet evangelism worldwide. Continue Reading…

What Are We Doing Here Anyway?

This blog really stems from who I am.  I am a youth pastor/church planter, Internet entrepeneur, and the husband of an awesome woman from Taiwan.  I have a passion for writing, seeing the Church use communication technology (specifically the Internet) in the most effective way possible, and helping to grow Christianity in America into what Jesus intended it to be.  I blog about these things here in separate pages according to these various themes.

2009 In Preview

Yeah, yeah…so I know that we are already nearing the end of the first quarter of 2009.  I am very late with my predictions this year.  Better late than never, right?  Well, frankly I have just been really busy with all of the stuff I’ve got to do, and this just fell to the back burner.  Having said that, I don’t actually usually do these until the end of January to mid-February.  I promise not to evaluate myself positively at the end of the year based on anything that has already happened as of this writing.  Well, here goes. Continue reading