I think a pay raise should have objective indicators, e.g. work product, billable hours, obvious dedication, and google fights. As such, it is time for Jonah Goldberg to be paid more than Rich Lowry.
Jonah puts the smackdown on Lowry in the google fights. Carnivorous dog owning jews vs. urban fly fishing cat lovers really isn’t much of a competition.
Bring on the raise, fish boy!
Ukraine has a pro-West female Prime Minister now.
President Viktor Yushchenko on Jan. 24 tapped top ally Yulia Tymoshenko to be Ukraine’s prime minister in an appointment that pays tribute to her key role in Yushchenko’s torturous election victory but also will likely vex his opponents at home and in Russia. Yushchenko’s office announced the decision while the president was in Moscow on his first foreign trip following his inauguration a day earlier. The visit was intended to smooth relations with Russia, Ukraine’s powerful neighbor that had staunchly backed Yushchenko’s rival for the presidency. “Tymoshenko, of all the candidates that were proposed, was the most acceptable,” Yushchenko said after a meeting at the Kremlin with Russian President Vladimir Putin, “I hope that Yulia and her cabinet will be successful.” However, Tymoshenko’s nomination is likely to vex many in Russia, where prosecutors have issued an international arrest warrant for her on corruption charges dating back to her days as head of Ukraine’s gas monopoly – a company which has since been reorganized. Tymoshenko, a firebrand opposition leader, was a driving force behind the opposition protests dubbed the “Orange Revolution” that paved the way for Yushchenko’s Dec. 26 victory in a court-ordered rerun of the presidential election.
Hat tip to Tulip Girl.
It can save your life!
A Slovak man trapped in his car under an avalanche freed himself by drinking 60 bottles of beer and urinating on the snow to melt it. Rescue teams found Richard Kral drunk and staggering along a mountain path four days after his Audi car was buried in the Slovak Tatra mountains. He told them that after the avalanche, he had opened his car window and tried to dig his way out. But as he dug with his hands, he realised the snow would fill his car before he managed to break through. He had 60 half-litre bottles of beer in his car as he was going on holiday, and after cracking one open to think about the problem he realised he could urinate on the snow to melt it, local media reported.
It has been no major secret that the Clintons are not fans of Howard Dean. In fact, according to yesterday’s Hotline, “Washington Times‘ Lambro reports, Clinton reportedly asked DNC chair Terry McAuliffe to run for another term, but McAuliffe declined. It is “no secret within party circles” that Clinton and Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) don’t want Dean as chair (1/27).”
It comes then as a surprise that former Clinton aide, Harold Ickes, is endorsing Dean for Chairman of the DNC. Dean’s former campaign manager, Joe Trippi, is backing Simon Rosenberg, some in Congress are rumored to privately support pro-lifer Tim Roemer while many others support Martin Frost, and Hillary Clinton is rumored to support Wellington Webb, the former mayor of Denver, CO.
The Ickes endorsement could be a big boost for Dean, who is already considered in the lead. Dean is out front with 48 votes for Chairman followed by Martin Frost with 15 (Soure: The Hotline). Ickes says the endorsement is his alone and not related to the Clintons. This could, however, signal some that the Clintons have had a change of heart. I doubt they have and, if they still don’t like Dean, look for the anti-Dean bandwagon to really fire up next week. The Clintons will most likely want to send a very strong signal that they disagree with Harold Ickes on this pick.
The Chairmanship will be decided on February 12.
Having paused for a few days, I want to return now to church revitalization. Sorry for the break, but it couldn’t be helped.
Let’s review: We have formed a committee, defined our mission, and have outlined our strengths and weaknesses. Let’s now deviate. The next step should be message gridding, but we need to do something else first. In reality it would go on simultaneously, but for our purposes we will deal with it separately.
In the Bible we study spiritual gifts. Everyone has been given spirtual gifts and everyone has been given talents. Me? My talent is, frankly, bureaucracy. I can organize and administrate with the best of them. You need a project done? I can oversee it and task others to implement it. I’m rather weak on the ground, frankly. I’m a shy person among those I do not know. I hate meeting new people not because I hate new people, but I’m just not very good at it — but I pretend well and compensate. Having someone introduce me to someone else is no problem. It is, however, very challenging for me to approach someone I do not know and introduce myself. I am phobic about it, which is something most people do not know about and would laugh at and dismiss if they heard, but it’s the God’s honest truth.
So, that out of the way, what the heck am I talking about? I’m talking about comfortable talents. Everybody has them. Are you good on the phone, great with people, a good cook, a great singer, a gregarious greeter of new people, etc.? What is your talent? God gives us all talents. Rare is the person who excels at everything, but everyone excels at something. What is it?
The congregation, if it wants to get back on its feet, needs to do some soul searching. Most likely, only 10% of the congregation is engaged on a leadership team. Most likely, it is that group that sees what should be done and does it without asking. It’s time to spark fires in the other 90%. This requires the preacher and talents.
A preacher, through use of his pulpit, can often inspire portions of the congregation. So, preacher, preach on talents. The leadership team needs to find out what everybody is good at. It’s a simple question really: “You, Mr./Mrs. X, if you could do one thing what would it be, however mundane or boring to anyone else, what would it be?” Everybody in the congregation should be encouraged to write that down and the members of the leadership team should be encouraged to honestly assess what they really like to do, want to do, and would be willing to do. At the same time, the leadership committee should be told to start thinking of ideas that could be done around the church whether or not the particular person suggesting the idea wants to do it. As a disjointed aside, I cannot emphasize this enough: a lot of people have great ideas about what can and should be done, but they do not necessarily think of themselves as the best person to carry the idea forward. Do not let that cause censorship on the leadership team. All ideas are valid and, if no one wants to step forward to carry out an idea, it dies. Do not make the originator of an idea be the implementor if he or she does not wish it. As an example, someone may suggest that the church needs a strong greeter program for guests. Well, I’d readily suggest that, but I certainly would not want to be the one doing it (see above for my phobia). I can be a back up, the second person in a team, but I do not want to be first. There are people in your congregation like me — trust me on that.
So, to recap, what are the talents in the congregation? We’ll soon be getting to tactics and you’ll need to keep a list of these talents. It is easier to get a person involved if they get to play off their talents. You’ll have an easier time getting part of the 90% that is not involved to become involved if you play to their talents.
A great sermon can open the desire of someone to harness his or her talents on behalf of God. They need to be reminded that an easy place to start putting their talents to use is in their own church.
Our next topic is going to be message gridding. It can be somewhat complicated so I’m going to prepare a graphic for it.
So WaPo makes a big deal out of Cheney’s dress at the Holocaust ceremony. I agree it was not a great choice. But, in the “report” there is this:
Some might argue that Cheney was the only attendee with the smarts to dress for the cold and snowy weather. But sometimes, out of respect for the occasion, one must endure a little discomfort.
That’s called editorializing. Report the facts. Let the reader decide. At least, however, we don’t have to guess where WaPo stands on the matter. They might as well blog it.