Tag Archives: Mario Draghi

Flashing Signs of Danger!

warning signs generalAnyone traveling on the roads needs to be constantly alert to signs of danger. For the last few months the morning commute to work in Victoria, B.C. has been an increasing hassle due to the on-going construction on one of the main traffic arteries leading into the downtown core. A bicyclist who usually took this route to commute to work downtown observed on one particular morning a few weeks ago that all traffic was being squeezed into just one lane by a small group of flaggers who had placed numerous warning signs, barriers, and orange plastic cones to block off the inside fast lane. But, while most people feel obliged to take notice of the warning signs and make the appropriate inconvenient travel correction, a commuting cyclist, a 30s-something woman, decided to ignore the warning signs.

She deftly zig-zagged through the cones and barriers on her bike and proceeded down the warning allegatorvacated inside traffic lane that had been closed off. Not seeing any overt evidence of construction machines at work, the biker picked up speed, zooming past the bumper-to-bumper line of cars slowly inching along. The safety flaggers’ franticly waved their arms and shouted to the cyclist to get back in line. “Stupid control freaks,” she may have smugly thought. As the cyclist pedalled along, perhaps she was planning to crow a bit in the office today about how her commuting style was not only “greener-than-thou” but also faster—until, suddenly, like a speeding pool ball dropping into a pocket, both woman and bike disappeared in the blink of an eye into the yawning maw of a steep, deep, rectangular hole whose opening, however, was only about the size of a house’s front door. In this case ignoring all the warning signs meant instantaneous death.

warning challengesRight now there are serious warning signs flashing on the world scene.

  1. America’s President and his Secretary of State have agreed to a “framework” protocol that will allow Shi’ite Muslim Iran, the world’s foremost state sponsor of terrorism, to retain its nuclear infrastructure allowing it to develop nuclear weapons—at a more convenient point down the road. Right now, Iran wants economic sanctions relief so it can more effectively support its allies in Syria and Iraq in their civil wars. In an unmistakable sign of his displeasure with the American President over this decision, Saudi Arabia’s new leader, King Salman, refused to personally attend the recent six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) hosted by Obama at Camp David. This was a very public snub.
  2. In another big snub to America’s superpower status, Washington’s closest European allies, despite American pressure and unprecedented public complaints by Washington, have rushed to sign up as founding members in China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Development Bank (AIIB). The implications of China’s rising power and America’s declining power are clear. According to former U.S. Treasury Secretary Larry Summer,

     “I can think of no event since Bretton Woods comparable to the combination of China’s effort to establish a major new institution and the failure of the US to persuade dozens of its traditional allies, starting with Britain, to stay out of it.” http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/11519001/How-China-grew-desperate-to-conceal-its-power-from-the-world.html

  3. The IMF’s just released World Economic Outlook describes a prostrate planet drowning in debt. There has been a persistent reduction in the global growth rate since the Great Recession of 2008-09 with no relief in sight. This is unprecedented and very much a wild card in the game of high stakes poker, that is the global financial system.

    “Total public and private debt levels have reached a record 275 per cent of GDP in rich countries, and 175 per cent in emerging markets. Both are up 30 points since the Lehman crisis.” http://business.financialpost.com/news/economy/welcome-to-the-new-mediocre-of-global-growth#__federated=1

  4. The developed world’s poster child for a country drowning in debt is Greece. For months warning bad thinkingnow, Greece has continued to stagger along like a zombie, even after some fresh flesh of debt relief from the IMF or the European Central Bank. Even Mario Draghi, the ECB’s president, is warning of unexpected, unanticipated consequences if Greece finally defaults on its debt.
  5. Meanwhile, barbaric Islamic State terrorists continue to behead Christians. Yet the Western world still doesn’t take all that seriously the IS spokesmen’s repeated declarations of a worldwide religious war against Christians, Jews, non-conforming Muslim sects and anyone else who isn’t their clone. http://www.jpost.com/Christian-News/After-second-incident-of-ISIS-murdering-Christians-in-Libya-foreign-minister-appalled-398665.

    According to General Alexander, the former chief of the National Security Agency (NSA–Edward Snowden’s nemesis), the West is losing the worldwide fight against jihadist terrorism. He said that the U.S. and its allies had failed to check the advance of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant or its expanding network of franchises across the Middle East. The West is increasingly at risk of a strategic defeat in the region. “It is getting worse. Twenty-five countries are now unstable, just look at Yemen,” he said. http://business.financialpost.com/news/energy/hackers-could-cripple-the-west-with-a-hi-tech-blitz-on-energy-sector-infrastructure-u-s-general-says?__lsa=2d0c-cb5e#__federated=1 accessed 4/27/15

  1. As a direct consequence of the current widespread instability, there is a virtual flood of
    desperate people from Syria and throughout North and Sub-Sahara Africa, all desperately trying to get into Europe in search of a better life. In 2014 a total of 170,000 entered Italy alone. Recently, the number of unwanted immigrants has swelled to 11,000 in just one week.

    “We’re swamped,” Sandro Gozi, the Italian minister for European affairs, told French daily Le Monde. “There’s not even enough space in Sicily’s cemeteries to bury the dead.” Where are the Italians going to put them? Who wants them? There’s just not enough work. http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/20/africa/italy-migrant-boat-capsizes/index.html

  2. On the other end of Africa, in South Africa, one of the more prosperous African nations, there is an ongoing wave of what is called “xenophobic attacks” against the 10 percent of the population who are migrants from neighbouring African states, like Zimbabwe, and  Asia who seeking a better life for themselves. But poor South Africans see them as unwanted competition for the scarce jobs available in a country where the unemployment rate is 24 percent. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-32377743
  3. And finally, the Pew Research Center confirmed that over the past seven years, from 2007 to 2014, the number of Americans who identify themselves as Christian has dramatically fallen nearly 8 percentage points from 78% to just 71% of the population. Fifty-six million Americans don’t observe or practice any religion. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-32710444 accessed May 14, 2015.

What do all these signs mean? As a society, collectively we are like the eco-warrior bicyclist in Victoria, ignoring all the warning signs as we make good time pedalling rapidly toward our doom. There’s no doubt that these are serious, even dangerous times. So what should you and I do? Jesus said this to his disciples:

“Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming warning run like hellhorrors and stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:36 (New Living Translation)

Pray to God? That’s the last thing this secular society wants to do. The Canadian Supreme Court recently decided to prohibit municipal officials from praying to the Bible’s God for help before starting on the public’s business.

Many people in the Western world have indeed turned their backs on the wisdom and knowledge that is offered to humanity by God. They have reinterpreted freedom of religion in the 21st Century to now mean freedom FROM religion. After all, they think that in a prosperous, secure society with good health care and abundant food and lots of entertainment, who needs to really seek the Bible’s God?

But, the warning signs are flashing out that there’s danger up ahead. Our future personal safety and security depends upon paying attention to those spiritual flaggers trying to get our attention and get back in line according to the Creator’s established House Rules for Humanity that are spelled out in the Scriptures. As a civilization we are ignoring the warnings to our peril.

Finem Respice! Principiis Obsta! The Rise of the 4th Reich?

Finem respice! Principiis obsta!  Yeah, you know I must be an antiquity since I did indeed study Latin in the 8th grade in public school. But a little Latin and a love of history and the Bible does give me something of an edge when it comes to discerning the World Tomorrow. After all, as King Solomon the Wise once wrote:

What has been is what will be,

and what has been done is what will be done,

and there is nothing new under the sun.

Is there a thing of which it is said,

“See, this is new”?

It has been already

in the ages before us (Ecclesiastes 1:9-10,

English Standard Version).

Finem respice means “consider the end,” while Principiis obsta translates as “resist the beginnings.” I lifted these Latin phrases from Milton Mayer’s 1955 book They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45, published by the University of Chicago Press.

Mayer’s book was all about how the Nazis used the human nature and cultural characteristics of the German people in order to manipulate and gradually subvert them in order to ensure their acquiescence to, and then compliance with their evil program of world war and genocide.

Most of us are somewhat familiar with a small portion of Mayer’s book in which he relates the observation of a German university professor during the 1930s and 1940s who remarked that the Nazis first targeted the Communists, then the Socialists, and next the Jews, etc., but the professor did nothing because he wasn’t one of them. Mayer wrote:

Pastor Niemöller spoke for the thousands and thousands of men like me when he spoke (too modestly of himself) and said that, when the Nazis attacked the Communists, he was a little uneasy, but, after all, he was not a Communist, and so he did nothing; and then they attacked the Socialists, and he was a little uneasier, but, still, he was not a Socialist, and he did nothing; and then the schools, the press, the Jews, and so on, and he was always uneasier, but still he did nothing. And then they attacked the Church, and he was a Churchman, and he did something—but then it was too late.
http://www.press.uchicago.edu/Misc/Chicago/511928.html

Of course, as the Nazi program unfolded, the pastor and the professor and  others like them, found themselves being isolated and then targeted. But by then it was too late as there were too few left to effectively stand and resist with them.

You see, at the beginning of the Hitler regime in 1933, the Nazis didn’t seem all that bad—a little uncouth, maybe. But after all, they had great ideas about how to rescue the economy, get people back to work, and restore some of Germany’s lost pride. So most Germans hopped aboard the Nazi Volkswagen and went along for the ride. But, of course, there was a catch, wasn’t there? There was a price to be paid in blood. Millions of Germans had their lives and families destroyed by the Second World War. One must foresee the end in order to resist, or even to perceive the mild beginnings of oppression and tyranny.

The recent Dec. 9-10th emergency Brussels meeting of the European Union marks a critical new beginning for that supra-national body. German Chancellor Angela Merkel told the press at the end of the conference “This is the breakthrough to the stability union.”

The breakthrough that 26 or the 27 European Union members agreed to was about agreeing to create a new inter-governmental treaty by which all the participating nations will have to submit their national budgets for approval by the European Commission bureaucracy, which will have the authority to veto it and order it to be revised.

The new treaty will also create an unspecified “automatic correction mechanism” that will punish any country that breaks the new European Commission fiscal rules. At least, that’s where it starts.According to the European Central Bank’s president Mario Draghi:

“It’s a very good outcome for the euro area, very good. It is going to be the basis for much more disciplined economic policy for euro-area members. And certainly is going to be helpful in the present situation.”

Well, I’m glad Mr. Draghi thinks so.  However, as of December 12th the world’s financial markets have not been as thrilled as Mr. Draghi with this outcome. But then, neither was Great Britain’s Prime Minister, David Cameron.  His was the sole dissenting voice to this newly promised Euro discipline, and he forcefully resisted this push by Germany’s Chancellor Merkel and France’s President Sarkozy.

Cameron tenaciously defended his refusal to go along, saying to the press at the close of the Brussels conference on Friday:

What was on offer [by Merkel and Sarkozy] is not in Britain’s interest so I didn’t agree to it. We’re not in the euro and I’m glad we’re not in the euro. We’re never going to join the euro and we’re never going to give up this kind of sovereignty that these countries are having to give up.

Some of the French, though probably a minority, actually agree in principle more with the British Prime Minister than with their own president. Former French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin, who has just announced his candidacy for the upcoming French presidential elections in April-May 2012, dismissed the Merkel-Sarkozy deal that would bind the countries that use the euro ever more closer together, including giving officials in Brussels control over national budgets, remarking:

“We’re falling in line behind interests that are not those of France. I think we need more courage than that!”

Simon Heffer, a prominent English Euroskeptic, wrote in Britain’s Daily Mail newspaper as quoted by newstatesman.com:

“What we are witnessing is the economic colonization of Europe by stealth by the Germans. Once, it would have taken an invading military force to topple the leadership of a European nation. Today, it can be done through sheer economic pressure.” This is, he says, the “rise of the Fourth Reich,” in which Germany is “using the financial crisis to conquer Europe.” Fiscal union, favoured by some as the long-term solution, “would make Europe effectively a German empire” and lead to “a loss of sovereignty not seen…since many were under the jackboot of the Third Reich.” http://www.newstatesman.com/print/201111240017

The motivating force behind the new German push is neither Nazism nor an overly ambitious or aggressive German lust for European domination. Rather, paradoxically, it is fear – fear of the present and fear of the past.

Any student of modern European history over the last 300-400 years knows that whenever there has been a strong continental European power seeking to assemble a coalition of European states under its hegemony, whatever the reason, the end result has always been disastrous for regional peace and freedom. Has human nature changed? Can a leopard change its spots? Are the Germans still Germans, the French still French, and the United Kingdom still British?

If you would like to learn more about what is going to happen in the future and Bible prophecy, check out my video presentation “Who Will Be King” on http://cogwebcast.com/