10 Really Stupid Things The Mainstream Media Has Said About The Bilderberg Group In 2011
The American Dream
June 11, 2011
This past weekend, dozens upon dozens of the wealthiest and most powerful people in the world will be gathering behind closed doors at a luxury hotel in Switzerland. All of the participants are sworn to secrecy and swarms of heavily armed security guards are making sure that nobody unauthorized gets in. Decisions will be made at this meeting which will fundamentally change our future. The CEO of Amazon.com will be there, as will the head of Google, one of the co-founders of Facebook and one of the top executives from Microsoft. The president of the EU will be in attendance, along with the president of the World Bank, the president of the European Central Bank, the head of the World Trade Organization and the top commander of NATO. Henry Kissinger and David Rockefeller will be there. Royalty from all over Europe will be attending as well. Past attendees have included several U.S. presidents, Ben Bernanke, Timothy Geithner, Prince Charles, current British Prime Minister David Cameron, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Hillary Clinton, Bill Gates and current Texas governor Rick Perry. You would think that these meetings would be something that the mainstream media would want to cover. But unfortunately, the mainstream media mostly ignores the Bilderberg Group meetings, and if they do cover them they just crack a bunch of jokes about “conspiracy theories” and they do their best to play down the importance of the meetings.
Under normal circumstances, a gathering of top executives from Google, Facebook and Microsoft would have the media salivating. So would a gathering of some of the most important international politicians on the globe.
So why doesn’t the mainstream media want to talk about the Bilderberg Group?
From June 9th to June 12th, over a hundred of the most powerful people on the planet will meet in utter secrecy and will discuss the future of the world.
All of the participants have been sworn not to reveal what is discussed.
Yet this doesn’t interest the mainstream media at all?
Every year since 1954, the Bilderberg Group has been holding these meetings. For years, even the existence of this group was denied. On U.S. talk shows anyone that dared to suggest that the Bilderberg Group existed was mocked as a “conspiracy theorist”.
Well, in recent years the alternative news has brought so much attention to the Bilderberg Group that everyone finally admits that, yes, the Bilderberg Group really does exist.
But now the mainstream media does everything they can to downplay the importance of the organization.
They suggest that anyone that believes that there is anything wrong with dozens of the most powerful people on the planet meeting in utter secrecy to discuss the future course of world events is “crazy”.
If the Bilderberg Group is so unimportant, then why would people like Bill Clinton, Prince Charles, David Cameron, Tony Blair, Henry Kissinger, Bill Gates, Angela Merkel, Ben Bernanke, Tim Geithner, Rick Perry, David Rockefeller, Herman van Rompuy, Jean-Claude Trichet, Jeff Bezos, Chris R. Hughes, Eric Schmidt, Craig J. Mundie, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Richard Perle, Paul Volcker, Lawrence Summers, Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden take the time to attend?
A full list of the “official attendees” of the Bilderberg Group in 2011 can be found here.
However, the truth is that the “unofficial attendees” are often even more interesting.
But the mainstream media acts like all of this is no big deal.
If they do decide to talk about the Bilderberg Group, they tend to crack jokes and make fun of “conspiracy theorists”.
The following are 10 really stupid things that the mainstream media has said about the Bilderberg Group in 2011….
#1 CNBC: The 120 participants attend in a private capacity and, officially, they do not forge agreements over global economic policy.
#2 BBC News: The gnashing of teeth over Bilderberg is ridiculous, says Times columnist David Aaronovitch. “It’s really an occasional supper club for the rich and powerful,” he argues.
#3 Time Magazine: A vestige of the Cold War, the only drawback of the meeting could be that the Chinese and the Russians are still missing.
#4 Forbes: Admittedly, it’s fascinating that some secret society, like the Wizard of Oz, choreographs events on a global stage. Puppet masters of the public’s fate. Conspiracy theories punctuate the otherwise mundane din of modern life, but riveting as it all appears, I’m not buying it. Would they? Absolutely. Could they? Implausible.
#5 Fox News: But the secretive nature of the meetings, that first began in 1954, has sparked countless conspiracy theories by those who believe the group is trying to form a new world order of sorts.
#6 CNBC: Its secrecy only serves to add fuel to the innumerate conspiracy theories that circulate around the event, with Internet message boards often channelling Da Vinci Code author Dan Brown and putting the “club” in the same bracket as the Freemasons and “Illuminati.”
#7 BBC News: Secret cabals extend beyond the Bilderberg Group. The Illuminati, which derives from a 16th Century Bavarian secret society, is alleged to be an all powerful secret society, including US presidents, that has controlled major world events. The Freemasons – famous for their peculiar handshakes – is a secret fraternity society that has become more open in recent years after extensive criticism.
#8 The Baltimore Sun: I suppose the Bilderberg Group, which was founded in 1954 at the Hotel Bilderberg in Holland, can supply us with a few thrills while we wait for Dan Brown to knock out another book. But a hotel in St. Moritz — especially one that features Teddy’s World for kids — doesn’t seem like the place to plot world domination. Shouldn’t they be meeting in a secret underground lair?
#9 NBC Affiliate KETK: If you believe Mafia hitmen hired by Castro killed JFK, or President Clinton was involved in murder, or George W. Bush planned 9-11…then this story is for you. That’s because the real Masters of the Universe are gathered in St. Moritz to decide your future. It’s called the Bilderberg conference, and it means more to European reporters than anyone here.
#10 BBC News: Some people are more susceptible than others to believing in wacky cabals, says Prof Chris French, of Goldsmith College’s psychology department. “It’s people who tend to be alienated by the mainstream, who feel powerless. They have a need to have a sense of control.”
Look, the truth is that dozens of the most powerful people on the planet are not meeting in utter secrecy just to play poker and smoke cigars.
They are having very real discussions that will have a very real influence on the direction of world events.
If that doesn’t fit in with how you prefer to view the world, that is too bad. The ultra-elite are going to keep on doing what they are doing whether you acknowledge them or not.
In fact, they would very much prefer for most people to keep on ignoring them because that makes it so much easier for them to achieve their goals.
Sadly, most Americans will completely ignore the Bilderberg Group in 2011 because the mainstream media is telling them that it is not an important event.
So what do all of you think about the Bilderberg Group? Please feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts below….
9 Ways That The World Has Gotten Even Crazier In May
In case you haven’t noticed, the world has gotten even crazier in May. Just when you think that things can’t get any more bizarre, events go to a whole new level. Sadly, millions of Americans seem almost completely oblivious to all of the world-altering things that are going on all around us. I recently got back from doing a bit of traveling, and the reality is that most people out there are so busy living their lives and trying to survive from month to month that they don’t really have much time to pay attention to what is going on in the world around them. They are too busy working their tails off to make a living, they are too busy stocking up on groceries and foreign-made goods at the big box retail stores and they are too busy cheering for Scotty on American Idol. Unfortunately, what little information about the rest of the world that most Americans actually take in comes from the mainstream media. Most of the time the mainstream media is very adept at lulling the American people to sleep, but things are starting to get so crazy out there that a growing minority of Americans are starting to sit up and take notice.
When I was away on vacation I kept a bit of an eye on the news, but I had no idea just how crazy things were getting until I returned home. These days more seems to happen in a single week than used to happen in an entire month. The globe has become an incredibly unstable place, and you never know what is going to happen next.
The following are 9 ways that the world has gotten even crazier in May….
#1 What in the world is going on with the weather? All of a sudden “unprecedented tornadoes” are popping up almost every day now. Did you see what happened in Joplin, Missouri the other day? There are very few things that will put sheer terror into you like an F5 tornado will. If you doubt that, just check out this video.
The National Weather Service says that the Joplin tornado was the 8th worst tornado to ever hit the United States. At least 122 people were killed and at least 750 people were injured.
Sadly, the Joplin tornado is part of a larger trend. Many are already calling this a “100 year” tornado season. It seems like a major tornado outbreak somewhere in the U.S. is a nightly occurence now. For example, just tonight a huge tornado near Oklahoma City killed a couple of people.
In April, there were approximately 600 tornadoes across the country. That is the most tornadoes that have ever been recorded in a single month inside the United States. Usually, we only have about 1,200 tornadoes for the entire year.
There is nothing “normal” about these tornado outbreaks. Something really weird is happening.
In addition, we have just experienced the worst Mississippi River flood ever. That flood is also being called something that only happens “once in a hundred years”.
Why are such horrible natural disasters striking the United States right now?
Can anyone explain why this is happening?
#2 The globe continues to inch ever closer to World War III. Just consider a few of the headlines we have seen just this week….
*NATO Warplanes in New Bombing Campaign on Tripoli
*Obama’s hidden war: US intensifies drone attacks in Pakistan
*US, Pakistan Near Open War; Chinese Ultimatum Warns Washington Against Attack
*Netanyahu’s defiance on deal is ‘declaration of war’
Sadly, it appears that the appetite for war is growing. Many had hoped that Barack Obama would be a peacemaker, but that definitely is not the case.
The United States has been at war for so long that the American people have learned to accept it as a normal part of life. As long as it is something that happens “over there”, most Americans don’t really seem too concerned about it.
But in the end, what is unfolding in the Middle East will have dramatic consequences for the United States. Unfortunately, most Americans have become so “dumbed down” that they simply do not understand what is happening.
#3 The news from Japan just continues to get worse and worse. Now TEPCO is finally admitting that there were at least partial meltdowns at three of the reactors at Fukushima. Why we are only finding this out now is anyone’s guess.
It has been more than 2 months since the tsunami and officials in Japan still do not have Fukushima under control. Every single day the complex continues to release massive amounts of radioactive material into the environment and the effects of this disaster will be felt for decades to come.
#4 When all of the crazy new security measures went into airports, we were all assured that scanners and “enhanced pat-downs” would never show up in subway stations, bus stations, sporting events and public schools.
Well, sadly the ridiculous security measures that have been implemented at our airports are spreading. In fact, if you can believe it, a “certified TSA official” was brought in to oversee student searches at the Santa Fe High School prom last weekend.
When TSA officials start showing up at high school proms that should be a major red flag for all of us. America is becoming a much different place than it used to be.
Do you enjoy living in a prison grid where we are all being constantly watched, tracked and searched? If not, you better say something now before it is too late.
#5 The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld an order from a three-judge panel in California that mandates the release of approximately 40,000 inmates from California prisons.
Yes, the prisons are so overcrowded that up to 54 prisoners are using a single toilet, but you can’t just release thousands upon thousands of criminals on to the streets of California and expect that there will not be major problems.
California Governor Jerry Brown is proposing a “realignment plan” which would shift tens of thousands of prisoners to county jails, but the California legislature so far has not authorized the hundreds of millions of dollars that it is going to take to implement the plan.
Hopefully something can be done, because releasing more than one out of every four California inmates back on to the streets sure does seem like a bad idea to me.
#6 It is looking more likely than ever that the U.S. debt ceiling may not be raised and that we could actually see the U.S. government default on some debt. The Democrats and the Republicans are fighting like cats and dogs again and there is such a deadlock right now that this could actually happen.
U.S. Representative Barney Frank certainly does not sound optimistic….
“It may be that we’re going to have to see some failure to raise the debt limit and some temporary hiatus in our ability to pay our bills (for lawmakers to act).”
JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon is using language that is even more apocalyptic. Dimon says that a U.S. debt default would “dwarf Lehman Brothers” and that in the event of a default things will take place “that are not going to be pretty”.
#7 The U.S. real estate crash continues to get even worse. This week it was announced that U.S. commercial real estate is now down 47 percent from 2007 and has now reached a post-crash low. The following is how an article by Bloomberg described the latest data….
U.S. commercial property prices fell to a post-recession low in March as sales of financially distressed assets weighed on the market, according to Moody’s Investors Service.
The Moody’s/REAL Commercial Property Price Index dropped 4.2 percent from February and is now 47 percent below the peak of October 2007, Moody’s said in a statement today.
But it is not just commercial real estate that is a giant mess. New home sales also continue to struggle mightily.
In April, the number of new homes sold in the United States tied the lowest level ever recorded for that month.
These latest statistics just underscore the reality that the U.S. housing crash if very far from over. As I have written about previously, the real estate crisis is absolutely crippling the economy and instead of signs of hope arising, things seem to be getting even worse. For example, during the first quarter of 2011, home values declined at the fastest rate since late 2008.
So when in the world are things going to finally start turning around?
#8 Most Americans don’t realize it, but Europe is closer to a financial meltdown than it ever has been before. Greece is either going to get another bailout or it is going to default. If you do not understand the kind of chaos this would set off on world financial markets, just read this editorial.
The Greek debt crisis continues to get worse. At this point, the yield on 10-year Greek bonds has now reached an astounding 16.76%.
But it is not just Greece that is in trouble. All over Europe there are nations that are on the verge of financial collapse. In Spain, nearly half of those between the ages of 18 and 25 are unemployed and the economic protests there have reached a frightening level.
Everyone hoped that a bailout or two would be enough to make the European debt crisis go away. It has now become obvious that is not going to happen.
A financial meltdown in Europe is happening. The only question is how it is going to play out.
#9 Over the past couple weeks, one of the most talked about people in the world has been Harold Camping. I have avoided writing about him because there are at least a billion issues that are more important than what Harold Camping is saying.
But this is what the mainstream media loves to do. They love to find a Christian with a crackpot theory and splash him all over the front page.
Camping has a very limited following and the vast majority of Christians think he is totally and completely wrong.
However, the mainstream media loves to talk about people like Camping because it is a tremendous opportunity for them to mock Christians and Christianity.
Look, anyone that put any stock in any of Camping’s predictions is seriously deceived. In case you didn’t know, Camping predicted the date of the rapture before. On September 6th, 1994, hundreds of Camping’s followers gathered at an auditorium in Alameda, California waiting for the rapture.
So now Camping has been wrong two times.
Now Camping is saying that Judgment Day is going to be on October 21st and he says that he has figured out why he was wrong about May 21st.
If you believe that, I have a bridge to sell you.
If you are a Christian, then you know that there are dozens of prophecies that still need to be fulfilled before “the end of the world”. What Camping is proposing is literally impossible according to the Bible.
Of course the mainstream media knows this, but they have no problem turning Camping into a household name while ignoring the thousands upon thousands of Christians around the world that are doing really great things.
But this is the crazy world we live in. We are all talking about Harold Camping because the big media companies decided that was the way it was going to be.
It is time that all of us wake up and start thinking for ourselves.
Our world is becoming crazier by the minute and the mainstream media is certainly not helping things. In times like these, it is going to be absolutely vital for all of us to engage our critical thinking skills and to not just blindly accept anything that someone else is trying to tell us.
Despite the heavy toll, the storm system that spawned the tornado wasn’t unusual for this time of year, say meteorologists. The high death toll resulted from the twister’s path through a commercial area including a hospital, a nursing home, a row of crowded restaurants and several large stores. The winds, while as high as 198 miles per hour, weren’t unusual for powerful springtime tornadoes in parts of the U.S.
Highlighting the unpredictability of such lethal storms, the weeks before the twister marked an unusual lull in the number of tornadoes that normally occur this time of year, experts said. More than half the season’s severe tornadoes usually strike in May and June. During the first three weeks of May, however, the number of powerful twisters had dipped to historic lows, federal meteorologists said.
“We were so far below normal in the first three weeks of May that we may not catch up to normal for the month,” said meteorologist Harold Brooks at the National Severe Storms Laboratory in Norman, Okla.
April was especially busy, contributing to one of the most severe spring tornado seasons on record. NOAA officials estimate there have been almost 1,000 tornadoes this year, double the total of a typical year, with storms raging from Missouri to North Carolina. This year’s tally of 50 fatal tornadoes compares with about 20 in an average year.
Forecasters expect severe thunderstorms, which can spawn tornadoes, to persist for the next several days, heightening the potential for more twisters before the storm system is blown out to sea and dissipates.
Strong tornadoes are “likely” Tuesday over Oklahoma, Kansas, and other areas, with the storm system moving eastward Wednesday to Southeast Missouri, Central Illinois, and surrounding states, the National Weather Service said.
Tornadoes moved through the Midwest, damaging a hospital, hundreds of homes and businesses, and a helicopter.
The twister in Joplin comes on the heels last month of the largest one-day outbreak of tornadoes to date, when 226 twisters were reported during a single 24-hour period on April 27, largely in Alabama and Mississippi. All told, the cluster of tornadoes, which continued into the following day, killed more than 340 people.
This spring’s outbreak surpasses any since 1953, when 519 people were killed at a time when forecasters lacked the technology and ability to warn people well before storms hit. The 1953 toll included 116 people killed when a tornado struck Flint, Mich., 114 from one in Waco, Texas, and 90 from a tornado in Worcester, Mass. The toll from that season was so heavy that it prompted the federal government to help set up ground-based radar systems that allowed local weather forecasters to track storms across regions, rather than relying solely on observational reports from weather bureaus outside their areas.
Final numbers on tornadoes and deaths this year won’t be available for months because early tallies include duplicate reports—and some unreported storms. NOAA officials warn that for now the tornado numbers will appear high until local weather forecasters can confirm the final count.
Islands in the stream: The extraordinary homemade dams holding back the Mississippi as desperate residents try to save their homes
By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 9:23 PM on 19th May 2011
Residents go to extreme measures to save their homes
We’ve all undertaken home improvements but these residents in flood-stricken Mississippi have had to embark on major construction projects just to protect their houses and livelihoods.
These homes in Vicksburg are all situated along the Yazoo River, a tributary of the overflowing Mississippi River, and their owners have surrounded themselves with tons of earth and sand.
With questions over whether the main levees that protect the area from floods would hold, these farmers took no chances and have so far saved their homes and crops from destruction.
See the video below…
Leaking: This homeowner sealed off the driveway to their house but water has crept in over the back of the makeshift levee – not surprising when the Mississippi River’s height has swollen to 56.3 feet – a record high
Braced: The flooding is expected to reach its highest point in Vicksburg tomorrow
The destruction is enormous and ever-growing. Unfortunately, Americans not directly affected by the destruction seem to be paying very much attention. These pictures are not isolated. This catastrophe reaches across multiple states, destroying thousands of homes and forcing many into a refugee status. After devastating tornadoes and wildfires, they now have to face a flood of near biblical proportions. And, here, in America! These disasters remind us of who REALLY is in control. Who has the power. Man, or God. From anyone’s vantage point. We see who wins that battle. If you are in a position to help your fellow Americans. Please do so! And if YOU are not prepared for a sudden emergency. PREPARE HERE
DIY: This home in Vicksburg, Mississippi is surrounded by tons of earth and sand as its owner tries to hold back the floodwaters from the Yazoo River
The flooding, which has been ongoing since the last week of April, is expected to reach its peak in Vicksburg tomorrow.
However, temporary measures have not worked for everyone.
Swept away in seconds: Moment tsunami destroyed the sea wall designed to protect Fukushima nuclear plant from disaster
The flooding claimed its first life today, after an elderly man slipped while clinging to a fence and drowned before authorities could come to his aid.
Two firefighters on a boat patrol on Wednesday spotted Walter Cook, 69, holding on to the fence in chest-deep water. By the time they reached him, Cook was floating in the water.
The elderly man died overnight at River Region Medical Center in Vicksburg of ‘hypoxic brain injury due to drowning,’ the coroner stated.
Hypoxia is an abnormal condition resulting from a decrease in the oxygen supplied to or utilised by body tissue.
Access route: A small white boat at the right of this protected house gives some idea of how the residents may get to the road with their home cut off
No room with a view: The walls of the levee are almost the same height as the roof of the house
Not quite so resilient: The homemade dam around this home in Vicksburg wasn’t quite high enough
Vicksburg has seen the worst of the floods with the Mississippi River’s height swelling to 56.3 feet at its highest point, eclipsing the record set in 1927.
Employees at Dirt Works, Inc, a cement production business in South Vicksburg, built a makeshift levee to protect the business but it burst on Monday.
The Yazoo River’s Backwater Levee connects with the main Mississippi River levee, and with the Mississippi River overflowing the Yazoo River has been forced to top its banks where they meet, near Vicksburg.
With heavy rains having left the ground saturated there has been widespread flooding along three million acres of farmland from Illinois to Louisiana along the Mississippi.
Around 15 miles of the Mississippi River, which had been closed since Tuesday, has now been reopened with the region and the nation absorbing huge financial losses from the closure.
Washout: Floodwater from the Yazoo river creeps across fields of crops near Yazoo City
If mother nature could paint: Water sweeps across acres of fields like a paint brush
Beautiful disaster: The image from above of water flooding fields looks like modern art
Devastated: This aerial shot over Vicksburg shows the ominous rise of floodwater around homes
Sinking: Little more than the tops of trees remain above the water’s surface
The Yazoo River is a relatively thin tributary of the Mississippi River but their connection has led to the flooding of around 300 acres of farmland
Some 600 boats use the river every day, transporting 500m tons of cargo, keeping the river closed for any length of time would potentially cripple local industries and dent the American economy.
Economic experts had warned earlier this week that the closure of the river could cost $300m a day.
The 15-mile stretch at Natchez in Vicksburg had been closed because waters were near the very top of the levee and it was feared wake from passing ships may cause the levee to breach.
But on Wednesday, forecasters lowered their expectation for how high floodwaters will get.
They are now predicting that the Mississippi River will crest at Vicksburg at 57.1 feet tomorrow, lower than recent predictions, and that if the water does go over the Yazoo Backwater Levee, it will be only a trickle.
Floating boaters: Dennis Barkemeyer (right) inspects a temporary levee built around a medical center in Vidalia, Louisiana
10 ways Barack Obama botched the aftermath of the masterful operation to kill Osama bin Laden
By Toby Harnden World Last updated: May 5th, 2011
The past few days have seemed like an extended amateur hour in the White House as unforced error after unforced error has been made in the handling of the US Government’s message about the killing of bin Laden.
We should not forget the bottom line in this: bin Laden was justifiably and legally killed by brave and skilled US Navy SEALs. The operation was audacious and meticulous in its planning and execution. President Barack Obama made the call to carry out the raid and his decision was vindicated in spades.
Having said that, the messiness since then has taken much of the sheen off this success, temporarily at least. Here’s a summary of what went wrong once the most difficult bit had been achieved:
1. It took nearly three days to decide not to release the photographs. I think there was a case for not releasing the pictures, though on balance I think disclosure would have been best. But whichever way Obama went on this, the decision should have been made quickly, on Monday. By letting the world and his dog debate the issue for so long and then say no made the administration look indecisive and appear that it had something to hide. It will fuel the conspiracy theories. And the pictures will surely be leaked anyway.
2. To say that bin Laden was armed and hiding behind a wife being used as a human shield was an unforgiveable embellishment. The way it was expressed by John Brennan was to mock bin Laden as being unmanly and cowardly. It turned out to be incorrect and gave fuel, again, to conspiracy theories as well as accusations of cover-ups and illegality. Of all the mistakes of the week, this was by far the biggest.
3. It was a kill mission and no one should have been afraid to admit that. Bin Laden was a dead man as soon as the SEAL Team landed. There’s nothing wrong with that but the Obama administration should have been honest about it rather than spinning tales about bin Laden having a gun, reaching for a gun (the latest) and resisting (without saying how he resisted).
4. Too much information was released, too quickly and a lot of it was wrong. When it made the administration look good, the information flowed freely. When the tide turned, Jay Carney, Obama’s spokesman, clammed up completely. I’m a journalist; I like it when people talk about things. But from the administration’s perspective, it would have been much better to have given a very sparse, accurate description of what happened without going into too much detail, especially about the intelligence that led to the compound (an account which is necessarily suspect).
5. Obama tried to claim too much credit. Don’t get me wrong, he was entitled to a lot of credit. but sometimes less is more and it’s better to let facts speak for themselves. We didn’t need official after official to say how “gutsy” Obama was. Far better to have heaped praise on the CIA and SEALs (which, to be fair, was done most of the time) and talked less about Obama’s decision-making. And a nod to President George W. Bush would have been classy – and good politics for Obama.
6. Proof of death was needed. The whole point of the SEAL operation, rather than a B2 bombing that levelled the compound, was to achieve certainty. The administration has DNA evidence, facial recognition evidence and photographic evidence. Some combination of that evidence should have been collated and released swiftly. It’s not enough to say, effectively, “Trust me, I’m Obama” – especially given all the misinformation that was put out.
7. The mission should have been a ‘capture’ one. Notwithstanding 3. above and the legitimacy of killing bin Laden, I think a capture of bin Laden was probably possible and, in the long term, would have been better – not least because of the intelligence that could have been gleaned from interrogating him and the couriers. My hunch is that Obama didn’t want him alive because there would have been uncomfortable issues to address like whether he should be tried, where he should be held (it would have been Guantanamo – obviously) and the techniques for questioning him.
8. Obama’s rhetoric lurched from jingoistic to moralistic. During the initial announcement, Obama said that by killing bin Laden “we are once again reminded that America can do whatever we set our mind to”. If Bush had said that, he would have been mocked and laughed at, with some justification. But by today Obama was all preachy and holier than thou saying: “It is important for us to make sure that very graphic photos of somebody who was shot in the head are not floating around as an incitement to additional violence or as a propaganda tool. That’s not who we are. We don’t trot out this stuff as trophies.”
9. Triggering a torture debate was an avoidable own goal. Following on from 3. by discussing the intelligence, the administration walked into the issue of whether enhanced interrogation techniques yielded important information. That was certainly something they could have done without. Politically, it gave something for Republicans to use against Obama.
10. The muddle over Pakistan. Everyone I talk to with knowledge of these things tells me that Pakistan had to have given the green light for the raid in some form. But the Pakistanis, for good reasons, would not want this made public. Rather than say it would not comment on whether Pakistan had harboured bin Laden or was playing a double game, the White House poured petrol on the flames by encouraging criticism of Pakistan. That might have been deserved, but in terms of managing the region it was impolitic. The Pakistanis are clearly riled and the contradictions between the US and Pakistani accounts, again, fuel the conspiracy theories.
All this has meant that this week’s media story has become one about Obama and the White House more than one about the SEALs, the CIA and what killing bin Laden means. That’s exactly the wrong way round.
Editor’s Note: Our annual look ahead into the New Year was delayed as ad deluge of new intelligence reports crossed our news desk requiring me to hold off on publishing our 2011 analysis until we could dig our way out from under the blizzard of developments until a few days ago. We’ve now had a chance to digest additional information and formulate what we suspect will be key trend developments in 2011. We do not predict actual events, but we consider the possibilities for certain events to transpire. We have refrained from making predictions that major Bible Prophecy events will take place in 2011, but as with any year, the possibilities for the fulfillment of major Biblical Prophecies remains viable. Frankly, not much would surprise us for 2011. In a word, we foresee 2011 as being very “chaotic” to say the least. With that in mind, let’s take a look at what may or may not happen in 2011.
The New World Order crowd began pushing their Global Agenda with full force in 2010. The Illuminists were able to significantly speed up their efforts to achieve a global government by their self-imposed, occult-oriented deadline of December, 2012. Their efforts were particularly visible with the implementation of new socialist laws and programs implemented in America during 2010, triggering a backlash among American voters. By comparison, Canada was much further advanced towards socialism and remarkably less affected by economic factors than America or Europe. In Mexico however, chaos reigns as the Latin American drug lords battle with the Mexican government for control of the nation.
At the same time, Europeans also began to display signs of rejecting the Globalist Agenda as economic conditions deteriorated across Europe. Violent protests emerged in economically hard-hit nations such as Greece, Italy, Portugal, France, Britain, and Ireland. German also saw emerging discontent from it’s citizens, fueled by resentment at the German government’s role as protector of EU’s Euro currency. The economic conditions across Europe are due in large measure to the socialistic systems developed over Europe since the end of World War 2. The installation of socialism in Europe was intended to become the model backbone for selling a New World Order to the rest of humanity. In 2010, average Europeans were feeling the shortcomings of economic socialism and many took to the streets to protest against the system.
In Asia during 2010, capitalism was churning along fueled by massive government subsidies and a generous trading arrangement made possible by the Globalists keen on using slave labor. China and India were especially targeted for growth in the past decade, but as 2010 came to a close, the world’s economic doldrums threatened to derail economic growth across the entire continent, but especially in China. In order to survive
And to correct global currency imbalances, China began to provide currency support to the Euro in an effort to stabilize not only the EU but keep that market open to cheap Chinese goods and services.
Meanwhile, Russia continued to market its energy resources as a means for strategic security and positioning to eventually bring itself back as a leading super-power nation. Russia used 2010 to develop and expand its role as a mediator and arbiter for economic and geo-political disputes as a means to achieving greater geo-political power and super-power status.
The Middle East continued to function as always on the razor’s edge for war, fueled by Iranian efforts to acquire a nuclear weapon. It is the region targeted by the Illuminists to be the flashpoint for the next world war, which will become the catalyst for global government according to their long laid plans.
While South America has been slowly emerging as an economic powerhouse, the continent of Africa continues to languish in poverty and underdevelopment. Australia’s agricultural strength has been pounded by radical weather developments for the past several years in battles from drought and in late 2010 with flooding of nearly biblical proportions. Indeed, the entire planet is undergoing radical changes in both climate and geology. The year 2010 continued to support an ever growing trend of increased volcanic and earthquake activity.
All in all, 2010 was a year in which events continued to unfold, pointing towards massive fulfillment of Biblical Prophecies related to the end of the age of the gentiles and the Great Tribulation culminating with the Second Coming of Jesus Christ and His establishing of the Millennial Kingdom.
As we begin 2011, current trends that continued from previous years merged with new developments suggesting that perhaps the year of 2011 might be the year, which sees the fulfillment of major Biblical Prophecy. Only time will tell, but this report will point out that 2011 may indeed witness the beginning of major prophetic events leading to Christ’s Return and Reign on Earth in the near future. We will breakdown the year ahead by regions for geo-political developments and then look at the year ahead from a global perspective for economics, the environment and the Church. We’ll conclude with a look at key dates in 2011, which may or may not be associated with prophetic fulfillment.
Middle East Overview:
Newly emerging, conflicting information concerning the Middle East delayed our 2011 Trend Projections report, because the Middle East is where the focus on Prophecy is based because most of the prophecies focus on Israel. Israel is the central focus for Biblical Prophecy because God’s promises were centered on Israel and Satan’s strategy to defeat God is based upon breaking God’s promises to Israel and in doing so, defeat and overthrow God.
Iran’s Nuclear Program
The Middle East situation as we enter 2011 remains murky and very tense as Iran continues its quest to become not only a nuclear power but also as regional super-power. In doing so, Iran uses Israel as a catalyst and an excuse for building itself into an eventual world super power which introduces the entire world to Islam.
With Iran becoming Israel’s central enemy and treat, we need to consider what is going on with Iran and its leadership and its ongoing military weapons development programs. The situation concerning Iran remains very murky and muddled as we move into 2011. We continue to receive contradictory information concerning Iran in different aspects.
The nuclear weapons program is perhaps the most puzzling piece of the Iranian threat as it is shrouded in such a thick veil of secrecy that Western intelligence agencies simply cannot know for sure the extent of the program. The Iranians are suspected of having parallel secret programs. Only in the last few weeks, new indications have emerged suggesting that Iran has a secret program operating inside North Korea. Western experts now expect the Iranians and the North Koreans will conduct a nuclear bomb test this year, perhaps within a matter of weeks.
Western experts, especially, Israel’s top spymaster think Iran’s nuclear program has suffered such heavy setbacks in 2010 that Iran will be hard pressed to produce a nuclear weapon before 2015. Of course that is based on the assumption that there are no other secret Iranian programs. It is also predicated on the notion that North Korea has not or will not sell nuclear weapons to Iran and Israel’s head of intelligence has publicly acknowledged these alternatives are possible. Such possibilities leave Israel wary of Iran’s nuclear potential
As we’ve recently reported in our A-O Intelligence Digests, new data trends support the notions that Iran is indeed collaborating heavily with Iran to produce not merely an atomic weapon, but a more powerful plutonium missile warhead. There are also new indications that North Korea either has shipped or about to ship a much more sophisticated ballistic missile with a longer range, heavier payload and more accurately targeted ballistic missile. Such a missile is capable of carrying nuclear warheads.
Some experts believe this new missile; a solid fuel ballistic missile has a 3,000 kilometer range. There are reports surfacing that Iran has purchased 2 dozen of these missiles with half eventually headed for Iran and the other half headed for Venezuela, where that nation has agreed to share a joint missile base.
There are contradicting reports that a dozen missiles have already shipped to Venezuela during the recent exchange of artillery fire between North and South Korea. It is thought that the artillery barrage started by North Korea was a diversionary ruse to enable a North Korean freighter to slip out to sea and head for Venezuela, while another freighter headed for Iran.
The West’s Covert War with Iran
Western news media outlets have ignored the apparent covert war being waged by the United States, Britain and Israel against Iran. The primary thrust of this covert war is to stall and delay Iran’s nuclear weapons program with secondary thrusts focusing on damaging Iran’s military weapons development programs and communications abilities plus efforts to force regime change in part through internal strife.
In shutting down or delaying Iran’s nuclear program, the West turned to a new type of clandestine warfare – “cyber-war.” Within the past two years or so, Western intelligence agencies developed a special computer worm virus now dubbed as “Stuxnet” This computer worm virus introduced into Iran’s computer systems including those used for the nuclear program as well as for other military and government applications. The Stuxnet virus has proven itself to have been wildly successful in 2010.
Yet the Stuxnet virus is only part of the cyber-war going on. The Iranian regime has had trouble keeping its citizens from accessing the internet and reading international news sources. The regime also has trouble with computer savvy citizens communicating with the outside world via the internet. Additionally, international hackers are constantly challenging the security of the government’s computers. With each passing month, the regime’s computer security protection comes under ever-rising pressure from outside hackers.
Of course, the Iranian regime is also now forced to deal with widening internal dissent not only from its citizens, but also from within the regime itself. The ayatollahs are beginning to fracture into deep divisions about future government policies on a variety of issues, including the international sanctions, which are contributing to even greater citizen discontent with the government. What’s more, President Ahmadinejad’s most staunch support from the hierarchy within the Revolutionary Guards Corps has begun to wane. As the year 2010 ended, we learned that the top commanders of the Revolutionary Guards slapped and insulted Ahmadinejad for making what were deemed inappropriate compromises.
The Supreme Ayatollah’s support continues to wane within the clergy itself. Ayatollah Khamenei now enjoys only a sliver of popular support among the clerics, but the IRG Corps has yet to make a move to unseat the Supreme Leader, thus making him almost a puppet figure in all but the most critical areas dealing with the nuclear program.
President Ahmadinejad’s support began to show serious cracks among his most ardent supporters when he moved unilaterally to cut off government subsidies of key consumer items such as gasoline and increase rationing levels of supply shortfalls of consumer staples including food stuffs.
Western analysts are expecting some sort of regime change in the year ahead, but the question rotates around whether or a regime change will be civilian or a military change.
In the last three weeks, new indications have emerged to suggest that the Iran’s non-political military leaders might step forward and challenge the regime and the Revolutionary Guards leadership, triggering the distinct possibility of a civil war.
Western covert efforts to bring on a regime change from within the civilian population include assisting tribal forces which have organized into popular liberation fronts. These tribal rebels seek to break away from the Persian oriented government and form their own separate nations. Such a break up would ensure a very weak Iran that could become a puppet of the New World Order. The current regime is a loose cannon usually flaunting its independence from the Illuminati leadership.
At times, the regime follows the wishes of the Illuminists and at other times attempts to run interference with Illuminati programs for the Middle East region. For this reason, the Bilderberg group’s meeting in June of 2010 concluded that something will have to be done with an incalcitrant Iranian regime, namely regime change involving war. From what we understand, the Illuminists intend to use a war to not only reshape the Middle East but to make the war so horrible that the world will plead for a greater world government.
Even so, our understanding is that such a war must coincide at a precise time point for synchronizing with a collapse of the world’s currency system and the imminent collapse of the global economy. As we understand it, the timing for war should coincide suddenly at just the last minute before economic collapse. Our question is whether or not the NWO crowd has the capability to pull this off at the precise moment without things blowing up in their face as has happened in the past with their plans.
We understand this war was supposed to have transpired in 2006, but some of the “actors” involved didn’t follow through in playing their assigned roles, particularly Syrian President Assad.
Iran’s Proxy Forces
Syrian President Assad has become very skittish about his alignment with Iran. At the end of 2009, the Illuminists began a new campaign to persuade Syria to remove itself from the Iranian sphere of influence or face severe future consequences. The Syrian leader was made to understand that the Illuminists would one day squash Iran’s dream of empire. As 2009 ended, President Assad began backing away from Iranian plans to wage a war with Israel, using Hezbollah and Hamas.
Israeli leadership conveyed to Assad that any attempt to use WMD assets against Israel would result with an Israeli nuclear response that would forever destroy Damascus. Such pressure has caused Assad to become very cautious. In fact, as 2010 drew to a close, Assad seemed to become more neutral, pretending to be a staunch ally of Iran but maintaining a certain level of independence waiting to see which side would gain the upper hand so that Assad could then join the winning side.
The Illuminists have grown tired of Hezbollah’s belligerence. For awhile, the terror group served a worthwhile function to create chaos and deadlock in the Middle East, but now the group is but a thorn in the side of the globalist agenda. At the appropriate time, Israel will be given the green light to take on Hezbollah without kid gloves. It will be a no-holds-barred war that will most likely be short with the swift demise of both Hezbollah and Hamas. Knowing this has helped to create further divisions within the Iranian regime as to how best to respond to the Illuminati threat.
The Imminent Fulfillment of Daniel 9:27
Certain Israeli leaders have been green-lighted for permission to establish Jewish control over the Temple Mount in the coming war. There are indications that an Iranian missile salvo would involve an errant missile striking the two Muslim shrines on the Temple Mount, destroying them and enabling the Jews to clear the Mount and begin building a Third Temple within a matter of weeks after the initial destruction. There are plans for such destruction of the Muslim shrines whether Iran actually launches missiles or not. The destruction of the shrines could be blamed on Iranian missiles yet destroyed by covertly placing demolition explosives at key architectural points to ensure destruction yet but shift blame to Iran, Hezbollah or Hamas.
Open-air Temple sacrifices would be permitted even before Temple construction would begin. This would point to a major prophetic fulfillment of Daniel 9:27, culminating in the Abomination of Desolation just three and a half years later. Sources within Israel report that a new Temple could be constructed in two years or less. The resources to do so are simply waiting in the wings.
There are conflicting reports as to whether such a war will occur this spring, summer or fall The Bilderberg Group’s comments would indicate a war this spring. Lately, Israel’s top intelligence chief has suggested that due to internal “problems” with Iran’s nuclear program, the timetable for developing a nuclear weapon is now estimated to be 2015. Without specifically stating it, the Israeli intelligence attributes the problems to the “Stuxnet Virus.” Other reports note the Iran-North Korea partnership suggesting a bomb may be tested sometime this year in North Korea, possibly within weeks.
One report circulating around the D.C. beltway indicated that the Obama White House was preparing to send 2 additional aircraft carriers to the waters off of North Korea. According to different military sources, I’ve been told that should we learn that 5 aircraft carriers are being stationed off the North Korean coast; expect imminent military action against Korea. Should that transpire, expect Iran to take action. However, we should also expect that in such events, additional carriers would be ordered to the Mideast to deal with an expected Iranian response.
We have tried to follow up on these conflicting reports and determine the genuine likelihood of any scenario, but I cannot report anything tangible or definitive on the timing for war, or if indeed war plans are being shelved. In fact, shifting changes could force a roll back in plans until 2012 or thereafter.
At the Pre-Trib Prophecy Conference in Dallas, Texas back in early December, one attendee, Jimmy DeYoung reportedly told other attendees that in a recent, private conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli leader stated that Israel would no longer hold back from war with Iran if it was learned that Iran was about to explode a nuclear bomb or had made such a bomb. He also stated that another trigger point for war would be evidence that Hezbollah and or Hamas was about to launch war on Israel, in which case Israel would wage total war. Israel would not hesitate to use nuclear weapons if WMDs were used to attack Israel.
It is my considered opinion that any war with Iran, Hezbollah that also involved Turkish forces along with other Muslim allies may well be the fulfillment of Ezekiel’s Magog War Prophecies. This would be underscored by the fact that tensions are rising over Israel’s announced discoveries of major natural gas fields off the Israeli coastline. Lebanon, Syria and Turkey are both claiming they have rights to those natural gas deposits also. It is very feasible that an outbreak of war may emerge over who owns and controls those gas deposits.
Trends to Look For
For 2011: watch for reactions to an announcement by the UN of indictments against Hezbollah leaders. If this happens, there is a very good chance that Hezbollah will take military action to overthrow the Lebanese government and nullify the UN action.
French President Sarkozy recently contacted several European counterparts to discuss what military action the EU should take in the event Hezbollah takes military action.
Israel has quietly advised Syria that any such action will be deemed an act of war against Israel and that Israel would take appropriate military action. Syria was advised to stay out of the conflict.
Also look for renewed efforts to re-start peace talks between the Palestinians and Israel. At the same time, do not be surprised if the Palestinian Authority collapses if P/A Chairman Abbas makes good on his promise to resign from office and retire. It is believed that in such event, the P/A’s collapse would result in Hamas taking over the representation of the Palestinian people; thus ending any chances for peace talks.
Look for Israel to wage war against Hamas, IF, Hamas allows a resumption of rocket barrages into southern Israel. The Netanyahu government is looking for an excuse to take on Hamas and dismantle it.
Look for a further rift in relations between Turkey and Israel, despite efforts by the two nations to patch up their differences. The radical Muslim faction in Turkey has silenced opposition from the Turkish military chieftains, giving the radical Muslim politicians in Turkey a free hand to engage in provocative diplomacy to interact with Iran against Israel. Expect relations between Turkey and Israel to continue to deteriorate.
Look for Jordan to make tentative moves that would pacify Iran and Syria as those two nations continue to joust with Israel. I do not expect Jordan will join in any military action against Israel, however.
Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah continues to recover from back surgery but the 87 year old monarch continues to reign in poor health. Rumors abound that he may abdicate the throne if he feels he can no longer carry out the duties as Monarch. Should he die this year, look for a power struggle to ensue, but at the moment, conservative family members who favor the West, seem to hold the upper hand to succeed the King.
Saudi Arabia now has a defacto nuclear deterrent in the form of two nuclear warhead missiles purchased from Pakistan. The Saudis feel confident that with such a deterrent they can keep Iran from overwhelming the Arabian Peninsula. At the same, the Saudis now recognize that Iran has won the battle for control of Iraq.
Look for Iran to consolidate its hold on Iraq in 2011, now that a new government has formed with Iran’s assistance. Prime Minister al-Maliki is now beholden to the Sheikh Moqtada Sadr’s militia forces who just recently threw their political support behind the Prime Minister in exchange for certain promises geared to ensure the militia remains the dominant force in Iraq. Look for Sunni Muslims to be forced into major territory concessions or face civil war. In the meantime, the Kurds may well respond by declaring their independence, triggering a new crisis with Turkey and Iran. This could result in a short war between the Kurds fighting against both Iran and Turkey.
In Afghanistan, look for further gains by the Taliban as U.S. surge forces begin to be withdrawn if the White House promise to begin troop withdrawals holds. If so, it’s only a matter of time until the Taliban regain control of Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, over in Pakistan, the civil turmoil continues with the Taliban seeking to over throw the Pakistani government. The recent assassination of a Pakistani governor demonstrates the precarious position that the civilian government now finds itself. Do not be surprised if the current government collapses, plunging the nation into new round of chaos that could result in the Pakistan nuclear weapons inventory falling into the hands of radical Muslims. Should that happen, the entire region will be plunged into chaos and enhance the chances for an eventual nuclear exchange.
Finally, look for chaos to emerge in Egypt. Egyptian President Mubarak is suffering from terminal cancer and is slotted to give up power in 2011. It remains unclear who is successor will be but whoever succeeds him will find a challenge from radical Muslims residing in Egypt. By the end of the year, it’s entirely possible that radical Muslims could take control of Egypt.
Europe & the Middle East
The European Union is poised for an economic collapse as its currency, the Euro, continues to deteriorate in the world’s currency markets. Many economists and currency traders are concerned that the Euro could collapse and disintegrate within the first two or three months of 2011. Various bond auctions are slated for January and concern grows that Portugal and Spain will soon be forced to default, creating another crisis much like what happened with Greece and Ireland only far worse.
Trends To Watch For
Various European cities have been exposed to riots in the streets last year and with economic conditions continuing to deteriorate, expect more riots and chaos across Europe, especially if and or when the Euro collapses upon itself in the currency markets.
2011 will be the year of intense trial and tribulation for Europe along economic lines that will carry over into political chaos and turmoil.
Look for continued civil turmoil throughout Europe if economic conditions deteriorate.
Look for nations in economic turmoil to experience not only riots but regime changes in emergency elections.
Look for France, Germany and Britain to stand by ready to intervene in any Lebanon crisis. They would join with America in dispatching military combat forces to the region to forestall an Israeli invasion of Lebanon, should Hezbollah attempt to stage a coup against the Lebanese government.
There are late indications as the New Year begins that China has signaled that it is prepared to support and purchase EU bonds to stabilize the Euro currency and preserve consumer demand for Chinese products to avoid a collapse of the Chinese economy.
Look for the major EU powers to continue supporting Israel, but at arm’s length unless or until a war breaks out involving Iran. Should that develop, look for the EU to side with Israel. If Iran launches missiles against Europe, look for European nations to take direct military action against Iran.
United States & the Middle East
The 2012 presidential election campaign has begun with preliminary jockeying for position on key issues. The Obama Administration is undergoing an overhaul in the wake of last year’s mid-term election results. It now appears that President Obama is going to shift his approach towards middle of the road positions.
In terms of foreign policy in the Middle East, Obama has eased his negative approach towards Israel to appease the American Jewish lobby in hopes that Jewish donations to his re-election campaign will mirror the level of donations of 2008.
Military cooperation with Israel will continue in 2011 and may intensify, depending upon how Iran responds to diplomatic overtures from the White House for Iran to suspend its nuclear program voluntarily. Chances for Iran to follow White House appeals are non existent as long as the current regime remains in power. The White House holds out hope that there will be a regime change in 2011 culminating in a suspension of the nuclear program. We suspect that such hopes are unlikely to be fulfilled. Instead we expect a hostile regime to remain in place within Iran.
America’s relationship with friendly Muslim nations will continue to be rocky as Muslim leaders hold President Obama with disdain. This is particularly the case with Arab leaders. The Obama Administration will find Arab nations reluctant to cooperate with Obama’s efforts to create a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.
Russia is signaling an interest in forging a new alliance with Israel. Russian President Medvedev is reportedly planning to visit Israel in the near future to improve trade and military relations with Israel. Both nations are working to supply each other with military weapons.
Russia is also signaling its moving to oppose Iran’s nuclear program under the realization and acceptance of the idea that Iran is indeed working to develop nuclear weapons. Russia now has begun to realize that Iran is a threat to not only Israel but to Russia as well. With that understanding, Russia may well attempt to forge a closer relationship with Israel, particularly with an eye towards forming a business partnership with Israel to develop Israel’s new natural gas fields off the Israeli coastline.
Russian leaders also wish to become an alternative ally with Israel. The tense relations between Israel and the Obama Administration are viewed by Moscow as an opportunity to reduce American influence with Israel and increase Russia’s standing with Israel. Russia would like to be viewed as a partner for Israel and thus increase Russian influence across the Middle East. Look for Russia to continue to develop a closer relationship with Israel and simultaneously become more of an adversary to Iran.
China is now showing signs of backing away from its support for Iran. There are reports that Russia has offered to replace Iranian oil products with Russian oil and natural gas to alleviate any losses incurred by China should it find itself being cut off from Iranian oil products in the event of war with Iran. Should war break out, look for China to remain neutral.
The Church in 2011
Church Trends going into 2011
1. The Christian Church is becoming less theologically literate.
2. Christians are becoming more ingrown and less outreach-oriented.
3. Growing numbers of people are less interested in spiritual principles and more desirous of learning pragmatic solutions for life.
4. Among Christians, interest in participating in community action is escalating.
5. The postmodern insistence on tolerance is winning over the Christian Church.
6. The influence of Christianity on culture and individual lives is largely invisible.
Comments on various points
#1. What used to be basic, universally-known truths about Christianity are now unknown mysteries to a large and growing share of Americans–especially young adults. For instance, Barna Group studies in 2010 showed that while most people regard Easter as a religious holiday, only a minority of adults associate Easter with the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Other examples include the finding that few adults believe that their faith is meant to be the focal point of their life or to be integrated into every aspect of their existence. Further, a growing majority believe the Holy Spirit is a symbol of God’s presence or power, but not a living entity. As the two younger generations (Busters and Mosaics) ascend to numerical and positional supremacy in churches across the nation, the data suggest that biblical literacy is likely to decline significantly. The theological free-for-all that is encroaching in Protestant churches nationwide suggests the coming decade will be a time of unparalleled theological diversity and inconsistency.
#2 Despite technological advances that make communications instant and far-reaching, Christians are becoming more spiritually isolated from non-Christians than was true a decade ago. Examples of this tendency include the fact that less than one-third of born again Christians planned to invite anyone to join them at a church event during the Easter season; teenagers are less inclined to discuss Christianity with their friends than was true in the past; most of the people who become Christians these days do so in response to a personal crisis or the fear of death (particularly among older Americans); and most Americans are unimpressed with the contributions Christians and churches have made to society over the past few years. As young adults have children, the prospect of them seeking a Christian church is diminishing–especially given the absence of faith talk in their conversations with the people they most trust. With atheists becoming more strategic in championing their godless worldview, as well as the increased religious plurality driven by education and immigration, the increasing reticence of Christians to engage in faith-oriented conversations assumes heightened significance.
#3. When asked what matters most, teenagers prioritize education, career development, friendships, and travel. Faith is significant to them, but it takes a back seat to life accomplishments and is not necessarily perceived to affect their ability to achieve their dreams. Among adults the areas of growing importance are lifestyle comfort, success, and personal achievements. Those dimensions have risen at the expense of investment in both faith and family. The turbo-charged pace of society leaves people with little time for reflection. The deeper thinking that occurs typically relates to economic concerns or relational pressures. Spiritual practices like contemplation, solitude, silence, and simplicity are rare. (It is ironic that more than four out of five adults claim to live a simple life.) Practical to a fault, Americans consider survival in the present to be much more significant than eternal security and spiritual possibilities. Because we continue to separate our spirituality from other dimensions of life through compartmentalization, a relatively superficial approach to faith has become a central means of optimizing our life experience.
#4. It is fine for Christians to engage in community action but not at the expense of thinking this will please God.
#5. Biblical illiteracy and lack of spiritual confidence has caused Americans to avoid making discerning choices for fear of being labeled judgmental. The result is a Church that has become tolerant of a vast array of morally and spiritually dubious behaviors and philosophies.
There are fewer and fewer issues that Christians believe churches should be dogmatic about. The idea of love has been redefined to mean the absence of conflict and confrontation, as if there are no moral absolutes that are worth fighting for. That may not be surprising in a Church in which a minority believes there are moral absolutes dictated by the scriptures.
#6. Lack of Christian witness and testimony due to a lack of knowledge and convictions is bound to create a vacuum in which society is no longer influenced or affected by Christianity.
Dates to Watch for in 2011
We are not mentioning these dates as a way of indicating that anything important will transpire on any such date. We only note these dates because of the potential for something significant based upon either numerology or Jewish feast dates.