Thursday, August 1, 2013
A few characters on the side of a 3,000-year-old earthenware jug dating back to the time of King David have stumped archaeologists until now -- and a fresh translation may have profound ramifications for our understanding of the Bible.
Experts had suspected the fragmentary inscription was written in the language of the Canaanites, a biblical people who lived in the present-day Israel. Not so, says one expert who claims to have cracked the code: The mysterious language is actually the oldest form of written Hebrew, placing the ancient Israelites in Jerusalem earlier than previously believed.
"Hebrew speakers were controlling Jerusalem in the 10th century, which biblical chronology points to as the time of David and Solomon," ancient Near Eastern history and biblical studies expert Douglas Petrovich told FoxNews.com.
"Whoever they were, they were writing in Hebrew like they owned the place," he said.
"It is just the climate among scholars that they want to attribute as little as possible to the ancient Israelites."
First discovered near the Temple Mount in Jerusalem last year, the 10th century B.C. fragment has been labeled the Ophel Inscription. It likely bears the name of the jug's owners and its contents.
If Petrovich's analysis proves true, it would be evidence of the accuracy of Old Testament tales. If Hebrew as a written language existed in the 10th century, as he says, the ancient Israelites were recording their history in real time as opposed to writing it down several hundred years later. That would make the Old Testament an historical account of real-life events.
According to Petrovich, archaeologists are unwilling to call it Hebrew to avoid conflict.
"It's just the climate among scholars that they want to attribute as little as possible to the ancient Israelites," he said.
Needless to say, his claims are stirring up controversy among those who do not like to mix the hard facts of archaeology -- dirt, stone and bone -- with stories from the Bible.
Tel Aviv University archaeologist Israel Finkelstein told FoxNews.com that the Ophel Inscription is critical to the early history of Israel. But romantic notions of the Bible shouldn't cloud scientific methods -- a message he pushed in 2008 when a similar inscription was found at a site many now call one of King David's palaces.
At the time, he warned the Associated Press against the "revival in the belief that what's written in the Bible is accurate like a newspaper."
Today, he told FoxNews.com that the Ophel Inscription speaks to "the expansion of Jerusalem from the Temple Mount, and shows us the growth of Jerusalem and the complexity of the city during that time." But the Bible? Maybe, maybe not.
Professor Aren Maeir of Bar Ilan University agrees that some archaeologists are simply relying too heavily on the Bible itself as a source of evidence.
"[Can we] raise arguments about the kingdom of David and Solomon? That seems to me a grandiose upgrade," he told Haaretz recently.
In the past decade, there has been a renaissance in Israel of archaeologists looking for historical evidence of biblical stories. FoxNews.com has reported on several excavations this year claiming to prove a variety of stories from the Bible.
Most recently, a team lead by archaeologist Yossi Garfinkel wrapped up a ten-year excavation of the possible palace of King David, overlooking the valley where the Hebrew king victoriously smote the giant Goliath.
Garfinkel has another explanation as to the meaning behind the Ophel Inscription.
"I think it's like a [cellphone] text," Garfinkel told FoxNews.com. "If someone takes a text from us 3,000 years from now, he will not be able to understand it."
The writing on the fragmented jug is a type of shorthand farmers of the 10th century used, in his opinion, and not an official way of communication that was passed on.
"What's more important is that there is a revolution in this type of inscription being found," Garfinkel told FoxNews.com. There have been several from the same time period found across Israel in the past five years.
"When we find more and more of these inscriptions, maybe not until the next generation, we may have a breakthrough," he said.
Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/science/2013/07/31/3000-year-old-inscription-translated-biblical-history/?cmpid=NL_FNTopHeadlines#ixzz2aj2sHbpL
A newspaper editorial today greeted Barack Obama in an entirely new way as he traveled to Chattanooga, Tenn., to visit an Amazon.com business center and lobby for his newest strategy to try to create jobs for Americans.
“Take your jobs plan and shove it, Mr. President: Your policies have harmed Chattanooga enough,” said a commentary in the Chattanooga Times Free Press.
“Forgive us if you are not greeted with the same level of Southern hospitality that our area usually bestows on its distinguished guests. You see, we understand you are in town to share your umpteenth different job creation plan during your time in office. If it works as well as your other job creation programs, then thanks, but no thanks. We’d prefer you keep it to yourself,” the newspaper said.
“That’s because your jobs creation plans so far have included a ridiculous government spending spree and punitive tax increase on job creators that were passed, as well as a minimum wage increase that, thankfully, was not. Economists – and regular folks with a basic understanding of math – understand that these are three of the most damaging policies imaginable when a country is mired in unemployment and starving for job growth.”
At Amazon’s Chattanooga fulfillment center, Obama praised the operation for being “kind of like the North Pole of the south right here. … Got a bunch of good-looking elves here.”
He boasted of creating “7.2 million new jobs over the last 40 months” because of the “grit and resilience of the American people.”
“But as I said last week, and as any middle-class family will tell you, we’re not there yet,” Obama said. “Even before the financial crisis hit, we were going through a decade where a few at the top were doing better and better, but most families were working harder and harder just to get by. And reversing that trend should be Washington’s highest priority.”
He said he wanted to lay out his ideas for creating good jobs but lamented that the Republicans in Congress wouldn’t give him everything he asked for.
Obama cited a strategy to offer incentives for manufacturers to keep jobs in the U.S. or bring them back from overseas, spending billions to catch up on “deferred maintenance” in the U.S., creating jobs in wind, solar, and natural gas industries, and exporting more.
He also said he wants corporations to hire more people.
“We’re not lacking for ideas, we’re just lacking action, especially out of Washington,” Obama said.
The newspaper noted “64 percent of Chattanooga respondents said they would rather you hadn’t chosen to visit our fair city,” but the editorial said it actually was good that Obama visited.
“It will give you an opportunity to see the failure of your most comprehensive jobs plan to date, the disastrous stimulus scheme, up close and personal,” the newspaper said.
The commentary cited the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009′s funding of the “Gig to Nowhere.”
That’s a $552 million “socialist-style experiment in government-owned Internet, cable and phone services orchestrated by EPB – Chattanooga’s government-owned electric monopoly.”
“The Gig to Nowhere is a Smart Grid, a high tech local electricity infrastructure intended to improve energy efficiency and reduce power outages. After lobbying for, and receiving, $111.6 million in stimulus money from your administration, EPB decided to build a souped-up version of the Smart Grid with fiber optics rather than more cost-effective wireless technology. This decision was supposed to allow EPB to provide the fastest Internet service in the Western Hemisphere, a gigabit-per-second Internet speed that would send tech companies and web entrepreneurs stampeding to Chattanooga in droves.”
The reality, however, is that the project is “an absolute bust.”
“While the Smart Grid will cost taxpayers and local electric customers well over a half-billion dollars when all is said and done, there has been little improvement in the quality of EPB’s electric service. Worse, despite being heavily subsidized, EPB’s government-owned Internet, cable and telephone outfit that competes head-to-head against private companies like AT&T and Comcast is barely staying afloat, often relying on loans from electric service reserve funds to afford its business expenses,” the newspaper pointed out.
“Further, there has been no credible evidence to suggest that EPB can even provide a gig of service consistently and reliably. Any companies hoping to utilize the Gig to Nowhere are quoted monthly billing costs that make the service unfeasible. As a result, Chattanooga has remained a relative ghost town for technological innovation. Almost no economic development whatsoever has resulted from the gig,” the newspaper said.
The newspaper said what the government program has achieved is a “shocking price tag.”
“Because of your unwillingness to balance the budget, Mr. President, the $111.6 million federal handout to subsidize the Gig to Nowhere will actually cost federal taxpayers $158.2 million, due to interest. Once EPB received the stimulus infusion to fund the pork project, the electric monopoly took out a $219.8 bond that will balloon to $391.3 million by the time Chattanoogans are done paying it off.
“The bond’s first payment comes due this fall and there remain significant questions about how EPB can manage to pay the debt without hiking electric rates on EPB customers,” the newspaper said. “Building a Smart Grid to get into a telecom sector already well-served by private companies was a bad idea from the start. But getting government involved in places it doesn’t belong is a hallmark of your administration.”
Obama’s explained his newest strategy is a plan that “simplifies the tax code for our businesses and creates good jobs with good wages.”
He said he would be willing to consider tax code reform – but only if it allows the government “to use money from transitioning to a simpler tax system for a significant investment in creating middle-class jobs.”
In an "unprecedented" move, police on Wednesday informed Jewish groups that the Temple Mount will be closed to all non-Muslims until at least the end of Ramadan, on 11th August. The announcement has provoked renewed anger over anti-Jewish discrimination on the Temple Mount, and sparked calls by activists for a mass-protest on 7th August, at the start of the Hebrew month of Elul.
Temple Mount activists had complained that for the past three days the Temple Mount - the holiest place in Judaism - remained inexplicably closed to non-Muslim visitors. The only "explanation" offered was a bland sign which simply read "Today the Temple Mount will be closed to visitors."
Those restrictions did not, however, apply to Muslim visitors, who continue to receive unrestricted access.
On Wednesday, Police Commander Avi Bitton finally informed representatives of the Organisation of Temple Movements - an umbrella of various Temple Mount groups - that the sign would remain up for at least another two weeks, until after the Muslim festival of "Eid", which marks the end of Ramadan.
Since the beginning of Ramadan, Islamists have upped their campaign to prevent Jews from setting foot on the Temple Mount - let alone praying there.
On the eve of the 9th of Av - the Jewish day of mourning over the destruction of the Holy Temples - a group of Jews including Deputy Foreign Minister Ze'ev Elkin were driven off the Mount by a mob of Muslim extremists.
The next day, police banned Jews from the site altogether, provoking angry reactions from worshippers, activists and Members of Knesset, including government ministers.
Since then, say activists, Jews who wish to ascend have either been turned away without explanation, or otherwise subjected to even more severe restrictions than they had previously experienced.
In a statement following the meeting, the Organisation of Temple Movements accused the police of caving in to Islamist threats of violence, and failing in their duty to secure freedom of worship:
"Since the beginning of this month, groups of Muslims have used violence to try to prevent Jews from entering the plaza of the Temple Mount. Police could not deal with the rioting Muslim extremists, and time and time again stood helpless before them,
“Now it turns out that the police have collapsed completely in their mission, and have failed in their effort to keep order on the Temple Mount."
Yehuda Glick, a spokesman for the Organisation of Temple Movements, slammed the police decision as "illegal":
“All of these [closures of the Temple Mount] were illegal actions taken by police, violating freedom of access to holy places," he said.
Glick called on Jews and government ministers to immediately begin visiting the Temple Mount around the clock, in response to attempts to deny access to Jews.
The Temple Mount is Judaism's holiest site, where the two holy Temples once stood before being destroyed by the Babylonian and Roman empires respectively.
Despite its supreme importance to Jews worldwide, Jewish visitors are subject to draconian restrictions on the Mount, including a ban on praying, due to the presence of an Islamic complex, administered by the Waqf Islamic Trust, and amid threats by Islamist groups. The Israeli police have bypassed several court decisions upholding the Jewish right to prayer there by citing unspecified "security concerns", either to ban individual activists or even to issue blanket prohibitions on Jews ascending at all. Religious Jews are followed closely by Israeli police and Waqf guards to prevent them from praying, or from carrying out any other religious rituals. Non-Jewish visitors are not subject to such restrictions.
But Wednesday's decision to close the Mount for such a prolonged period of time is "unprecedented," according to Rabbi Chaim Richman of the Temple Institute.
"This sets a new and dangerous precedent," warned Rabbi Richman.
"Over the past few weeks there have been several attacks by Muslim extremists on the Temple Mount, and the police have aided and abetted them by standing by and allowing our rights to be violated. Even the Deputy Foreign Minister was not granted the right to freedom of worship."
Rabbi Richman accused the government of having "surrendered sovereignty over the Temple Mount."
"By granting the Jordanian-run Waqf free reign on the site, even aquiessing to their demands to ban Jews from ascending, the State of Israel has effectively abandoned the Temple Mount altogether.
"No matter what posturing the government performs, and no matter how many times they repeat the meaningless mantra that 'The Temple Mount is in our hands' [a reference to the famous declaration made after the liberation of Jerusalem in 1967 - ed.], the fact is that the Temple Mount is actually in the hands of the Waqf and the Jordanian government."
The Organization of Temple Movements is taking this latest development very seriously, viewing it as a "test balloon" as to how the Israeli public - and wider Jewish public - will respond.
As a result, they have announced a demonstration at 7:30am on the 7th of August, which is also the start of the Hebrew month of Elul, marking the beginning of the period of repentance in the run up to the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashana) and the holiest day on the Jewish calendar, Yom Kippur.
"This week we commemorated the 10th anniversary of the reopening of the Temple Mount to Jews, after it was closed for three years following the outbreak of the Arab intifada," said Rabbi Richman.
"During those three years of abandonment the Waqf took the opportunity to destroy countless precious artifacts in an attempt to erase the Jewish connection to the Mount.
"It is truly tragic that the government has chosen to mark this occasion by once again imposing an extended ban on Jewish ascents.
"If this situation passes quietly, we will have reached a point of no return. The police are testing the waters: how important is the Temple Mount to the Jewish public? Our message - and the message of Jews around the world - must be clear: the Temple Mount is the heart and soul of the Jewish people, and we will not abandon it again."
The secular sabotage from fifth column apostate Americans is almost complete.
The current inhabitants of our nation for the last 80 years have been indoctrinated with poisoned kool aid and brainwashed with the secular and godless ideologies of Marx, Nietzsche, Crowley, Dewey, Sanger, the Frankfurt School, Freud, Kinsley, Alinsky, J. Lennon, moral relativism, secularism, narcissism, socialism, subjectivism, pessimism, critical theory, secular and demonic euphemisms, godlessness and lawlessness (Rom.1:18-32).
All of these have found their great fulfillment and means in Barak H. Obama. He is the one and has been the one to fulfill all of these reprobates dreams and godless visions. He - for our nation - is the straw that broke the camel’s back and the man that our founding fathers warned us of who would come at the end of our nation's journey.
The current inhabitants of our nation for the last 80 years have been indoctrinated with poisoned kool aid and brainwashed with the secular and godless ideologies.
The current inhabitants of our nation for the last 80 years have been indoctrinated with poisoned kool aid and brainwashed with the secular and godless ideologies.
Americans needs to wake up to the horrific realities which are at hand and until they do they will be continually swept away by the catastrophic floods of our nation’s calamities. My dear friends, I say this with no joy and with tears in my eyes that we are finished as a nation. The fat lady has sung! The jig is up! Put the fork in it! The curtain has closed! The camel's back is broken! The final buzzer has rung! For the Day of the Lord is at hand and the Four Horsemen are about to ride and NOTHING can stop it from coming! It is now time that we as individuals and as a nation to look beyond the limited confines of this world and put aside all of its false saviors and focus on the Creator and Redeemer of all mankind. In the end all will depend on it.
The Kingdom of Heaven is ta hand!
The Ignorant Fishermen Blog
The Kingdom of Heaven is ta hand!
The Ignorant Fishermen Blog
Scientists at NASA have released some incredible images revealing an enormous dark hole over our sun.
Corey Powell, Editor of Discover Magazine, joined Bill Hemmer on America’s Newsroom this morning to explain the giant black hole, and what it means for us here on Earth.
“The reason it’s dark is that whole chunk of the sun basically ripped off, blew out and is coming our way at about two million miles an hour,” said Powell.
Well, that doesn’t sound good. Powell explained that this phenomenon happens frequently, but we don’t often see something this large.
He said that when the chunk of the sun hits Earth, it would cause auroras, and would wiggle the magnetic field. The major concern would be potential disruptions to GPS signals and interference with communication satellites and power lines.
What is America going to look like when the middle class is dead? Once upon a time, the United States has the largest and most vibrant middle class in the history of the world. When I was growing up, it seemed like almost everyone was "middle class" and it was very rare to hear of someone that was out of work. Of course life wasn't perfect, but most families owned a home, most families had more than one vehicle, and most families could afford nice vacations and save for retirement at the same time. Sadly, things have dramatically changed in America since that time.
There just aren't as many "middle class jobs" as there used to be. In fact, just six years ago there were about six million more full-time jobs in our economy than there are right now. Those jobs are being replaced by part-time jobs and temp jobs. The number one employer in America today is Wal-Mart and the number two employer in America today is a temp agency (Kelly Services). But you can't support a family on those kinds of jobs.
We live at a time when incomes are going down but the cost of living just keeps going up. As a result, the middle class in America is being absolutely shredded and the ranks of the poor are steadily growing. The following are 44 facts about the death of the middle class that every American should know...
1. According to one recent survey, "four out of five U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives".
2. The growth rate of real disposable personal income is the lowest that it has been in decades.
3. Median household income (adjusted for inflation) has fallen by 7.8 percent since the year 2000.
4. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the middle class is taking home a smaller share of the overall income pie than has ever been recorded before.
5. The home ownership rate in the United States is the lowest that it has been in 18 years.
6. It is more expensive to rent a home in America than ever before. In fact, median asking rent for vacant rental units just hit a brand new all-time record high.
7. According to one recent survey, 76 percent of all Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.
8. The U.S. economy actually lost 240,000 full-time jobs last month, and the number of full-time workers in the United States is now about 6 million below the old record that was set back in 2007.
9. The largest employer in the United States right now is Wal-Mart. The second largest employer in the United States right now is a temp agency (Kelly Services).
10. One out of every ten jobs in the United States is now filled through a temp agency.
11. According to the Social Security Administration, 40 percent of all workers in the United States make less than $20,000 a year.
12. The ratio of wages and salaries to GDP is near an all-time record low.
13. The U.S. economy continues to trade good paying jobs for low paying jobs. 60 percent of the jobs lost during the last recession were mid-wage jobs, but 58 percent of the jobs created since then have been low wage jobs.
14. Back in 1980, less than 30% of all jobs in the United States were low income jobs. Today, more than 40% of all jobs in the United States are low income jobs.
15. At this point, one out of every four American workers has a job that pays $10 an hour or less.
16. According to one study, between 1969 and 2009 the median wages earned by American men between the ages of 30 and 50 declined by 27 percent after you account for inflation.
17. In the year 2000, about 17 million Americans were employed in manufacturing. Today, only about 12 million Americans are employed in manufacturing.
18. The United States has lost more than 56,000 manufacturing facilities since 2001.
19. The average number of hours worked per employed person per year has fallen by about 100 since the year 2000.
20. Back in the year 2000, more than 64 percent of all working age Americans had a job. Today, only 58.7 percent of all working age Americans have a job.
21. When you total up all working age Americans that do not have a job, it comes to more than 100 million.
22. The average duration of unemployment in the United States isnearly three times as long as it was back in the year 2000.
23. The percentage of Americans that are self-employed has steadily declined over the past decade and is now at an all-time low.
24. Right now there are 20.2 million Americans that spend more than half of their incomes on housing. That represents a 46 percent increase from 2001.
25. In 1989, the debt to income ratio of the average American family was about 58 percent. Today it is up to 154 percent.
26. Total U.S. household debt grew from just 1.4 trillion dollars in 1980 to a whopping 13.7 trillion dollars in 2007. This played a huge role in the financial crisis of 2008, and the problem still has not been solved.
27. The total amount of student loan debt in the United States recently surpassed the one trillion dollar mark.
28. Total home mortgage debt in the United States is now about 5 times larger than it was just 20 years ago.
29. Back in the year 2000, the mortgage delinquency rate was about 2 percent. Today, it is nearly 10 percent.
30. Consumer debt in the United States has risen by a whopping1700% since 1971, and 46% of all Americans carry a credit card balance from month to month.
31. In 1999, 64.1 percent of all Americans were covered by employment-based health insurance. Today, only 55.1 percent are covered by employment-based health insurance.
32. One study discovered that approximately 41 percent of all working age Americans either have medical bill problems or are currently paying off medical debt, and according to a report published in The American Journal of Medicine medical bills are a major factor inmore than 60 percent of all personal bankruptcies in the United States.
33. Each year, the average American must work 107 days just to make enough money to pay local, state and federal taxes.
34. Today, approximately 46.2 million Americans are living in poverty.
35. The number of Americans living in poverty has increased by more than 15 million since the year 2000.
36. Families that have a head of household under the age of 30 have a poverty rate of 37 percent.
37. At this point, approximately 25 million American adults are living with their parents.
38. In the year 2000, there were only 17 million Americans on food stamps. Today, there are more than 47 million Americans on food stamps.
39. Back in the 1970s, about one out of every 50 Americans was on food stamps. Today, about one out of every 6.5 Americans is on food stamps.
40. Right now, the number of Americans on food stamps exceeds the entire population of the nation of Spain.
41. According to one calculation, the number of Americans on food stamps now exceeds the combined populations of “Alaska, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.”
42. At this point, more than a million public school students in the United States are homeless. This is the first time that has ever happened in our history. That number has risen by 57 percent since the 2006-2007 school year.
43. According to U.S. Census data, 57 percent of all American children live in a home that is either considered to be "poor" or "low income".
44. In the year 2000, the ratio of social welfare benefits to salaries and wages was approximately 21 percent. Today, the ratio of social welfare benefits to salaries and wages is approximately 35 percent.
And not only is the middle class being systematically destroyed right now, we are also destroying the bright economic future that our children and our grandchildren were supposed to have by accumulating gigantic mountains of debt in their names. The following is from a recent articleby Bill Bonner...
Today, the U.S. lumbers into the future with total debt equal to about 350% of GDP. In Britain and Japan, the total is over 500%. Debt, remember, is the homage that the future pays to the past. It has to be carried, serviced… and paid. It has to be reckoned with… one way or another.And the cost of carrying debt is going up! Over the last few weeks, interest rates have moved up by about 15% — an astounding increase for the sluggish debt market. How long will it be before long-term borrowing rates are back to “normal”?At 5% interest, a debt that measures 3.5 times your revenue will cost about one-sixth of your income. Before taxes. After tax, you will have to work about one day a week to keep up with it (to say nothing of paying it off!).That’s a heavy burden. It is especially disagreeable when someone else ran up the debt. Then you are a debt slave. That is the situation of young people today. They must face their parents’ debt. Even serfs in the Dark Ages had it better. They had to work only one day out of 10 for their lords and masters.
We were handed the keys to the greatest economic machine in the history of the planet and we wrecked it.
As young people realize that their futures have been destroyed, many of them are going to totally lose hope and give in to despair.
And desperate people do desperate things. As our economy continues to crumble, we are going to see crime greatly increase as people do what they feel they need to do in order to survive. In fact, we are already starting to see this happen. Just this week, CNBC reported on the raging epidemic of copper theft that we are seeing all over the nation right now...
Copper is such a hot commodity that thieves are going after the metal anywhere they can find it: an electrical power station in Wichita, Kan., or half a dozen middle-class homes in Morris Township, N.J. Even on a Utah highway construction site, crooks managed to abscond with six miles of copper wire.Those are just a handful of recent targets across the U.S. in the $1 billion business of copper theft."There's no question the theft has gotten much, much worse," said Mike Adelizzi, president of the American Supply Association, a nonprofit group representing distributors and suppliers in the plumbing, heating, cooling and industrial pipe industries.
The United States once had the greatest middle class in the history of the world, but now it it dying.
This is causing a tremendous amount of anger and frustration to build in this nation, and when the next major wave of the economic collapse strikes, a lot of that anger and frustration will likely be unleashed.
The American people don't understand that these problems have taken decades to develop. They just want someone to fix things. They just want things to go back to the way that they used to be.
Unfortunately, the great economic storm that is coming is not going to be averted.
Get ready while you still can. Time is running out.