Monday, January 26, 2009

A Different Scale than Any Before

In this 4-minute ad for, you can see the scale of the current crisis compared to the past banking crises back to 1919, when the Federal Reserve System was established. I can't speak for, but WOW -- what an ad.

And the crisis has only just begun. Are you frightened?

You should be.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Lutherans to Lead Evening of 40 Days of Prayer for Peoria

Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church of Peoria hosts Day 25 of the 40 Days of Prayer for Peoria beginning at 6 pm the evening of Saturday, January 24, 2009. The Rev. Steven P. Tibbetts, STS, Pastor at Zion, will lead the ecumenical prayer service using the contemporary Lutheran rite for Evening Prayer, which is traditionally called Vespers or Evensong. The 40 Days of Prayer services have been held at 6 pm each evening since December 31 at First United Methodist Church, 700 Main Street, Peoria. The 40 Days will continue through February 8.

The 40 Days of Prayer for Peoria was first held last year as a response by area churches and ministries to Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis’ invitation to include prayer as part of the fight against violent crime. Zion co-hosted one evening of prayer last year with St. Andrew’s Anglican Church. Since the initial 40 Days last year, continued prayer efforts in the city have been coordinated by Push for Peace Peoria (website which has organized this year’s second effort. The prayer services reflect the wide variety of Christian practices available in the Peoria area, yet center on the whole church’s common prayer for the city.

A congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Zion has been proclaiming the Gospel from the South Side of Peoria since 1894. The church is located at the corner of Easton Avenue and Hayes Street, one block west of the intersection of Jefferson and Western, on the South Side of Peoria. For more information call (309) 637-9150 or view Zion’s web site at
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Friday, January 16, 2009

Sanctity of Human Life Day

Next Tuesday (my sister's birthday) is not only Inauguration Day, it is the day for Peoria's Annual Sanctity of Human Life Walk and Rally. Festivities begin with an Open House at the Family Resources Center, 321 Main Street, downtown Peoria, beginning at 5:30 pm.

The Walk for Life begins at the Peoria County Courthouse at 6:30 pm: "Prayer, singing, and walk to" Sacred Heart Church (across Fulton Street from the Civic Center) for the Sanctity of Human Life Rally at 7 pm. Keynoting is Derrick Jones, the Communications Director for the National Right to Life Committee.

Look for Pastor Zip there.

Meanwhile, here's one of the final proclamations by President Bush, released yesterday. Alas, we probably won't be hearing anything like this for the next four years.

National Sanctity of Human Life Day, 2009

A Proclamation by the President of the United States of America

All human life is a gift from our Creator that is sacred, unique, and worthy of protection. On National Sanctity of Human Life Day, our country recognizes that each person, including every person waiting to be born, has a special place and purpose in this world. We also underscore our dedication to heeding this message of conscience by speaking up for the weak and voiceless among us.

The most basic duty of government is to protect the life of the innocent. My Administration has been committed to building a culture of life by vigorously promoting adoption and parental notification laws, opposing Federal funding for abortions overseas, encouraging teen abstinence, and funding crisis pregnancy programs. In 2002, I was honored to sign into law the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, which extends legal protection to children who survive an abortion attempt. I signed legislation in 2003 to ban the cruel practice of partial-birth abortion, and that law represents our commitment to building a culture of life in America. Also, I was proud to sign the Unborn Victims of Violence Act of 2004, which allows authorities to charge a person who causes death or injury to a child in the womb with a separate offense in addition to any charges relating to the mother.

America is a caring Nation, and our values should guide us as we harness the gifts of science. In our zeal for new treatments and cures, we must never abandon our fundamental morals. We can achieve the great breakthroughs we all seek with reverence for the gift of life.

The sanctity of life is written in the hearts of all men and women. On this day and throughout the year, we aspire to build a society in which every child is welcome in life and protected in law. We also encourage more of our fellow Americans to join our just and noble cause. History tells us that with a cause rooted in our deepest principles and appealing to the best instincts of our citizens, we will prevail.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim January 18, 2009, as National Sanctity of Human Life Day. I call upon all Americans to recognize this day with appropriate ceremonies and to underscore our commitment to respecting and protecting the life and dignity of every human being.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-third.


Sunday, January 04, 2009

Oh, It's There!

I was a die-hard LA Herald-Examiner reader and subscriber (and still think real newspapers should be published in the afternoon), so I really hate it when the Los Angeles Times gets it right. Nevertheless, as a follow-up from yesterday's post, here's the beginning of today's Times story on the new Topanga Division LAPD station. Remember the question: Where is the police station?

LAPD opens new station in Canoga Park

Its 265 officers will serve the southwest San Fernando Valley. The department also celebrates its 140th anniversary.

By Ruben Vives

There was a lot to cheer about Saturday in Canoga Park.

The Los Angeles Police Department celebrated the opening of its 21st police station and launched the commemoration of the department's 140th anniversary.

Although the station is in Canoga Park, near the intersection of Schoenborn Street and Canoga Avenue, a panel of city leaders chose to name it the Topanga station in recognition of the Gabrielino-Tongva Indian tribe, which once inhabited the San Fernando Valley.

The station was going to be named the Northwest station but officials changed it after community members indicated that they wanted to honor the region's history, said Councilman Dennis Zine, whose district includes the area.

The 54,000-square-foot station was built at a cost of $36 million; the funds came from Proposition Q, a public safety facilities bond measure approved by voters in March 2002. Officials said the structure incorporates energy-saving light fixtures and other "green" features, including an efficient irrigation system.

About 265 officers assigned to the Topanga station will patrol the southwest portion of the San Fernando Valley, which includes Canoga Park, Winnetka, West Hills and Woodland Hills. The area has a combined population of 190,000, more than the cities of Green Bay, Wis.; Salt Lake City; or Topeka, Kan.

At least 40 volunteers also will help the station's officers, assisting in administrative and other duties, said the station's commander, Capt. John Sherman.

"We are starting a police-community partnership," Sherman said during a welcoming speech. "This is your police station."
Read it all here. But remember this -- by the third sentence, you knew exactly where the Topanga Division station is. Chalk up one for the [shudder] Times' reporting. Who? What? Where?...

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Who? What? Where? When? (Uh, Where?)

The San Fernando Valley's Los Angeles Daily News (that would be the home town paper) for New Year's Day includes a very nice article about the new police station in opening in Canoga Park this weekend.

LAPD's Topanga station to open

By Brandon Lowrey, Staff Writer

CANOGA PARK - Capt. John Sherman of the Los Angeles Police Department was smiling as he paced the bare halls of the LAPD's new Topanga station, which will soon be his to command.

Sherman nodded to a veteran detective who, dressed in shabby clothes, rolled some red-orange paint onto an office wall.

The 47-year-old captain contemplated the placement of a map showing his station's domain. It would go on his wall, next to photos of his wife of 28 years and their three adult children.

Volunteers buzzed around Sherman while construction crews peeled a chain-link fence away from the front of the high-tech station, set to officially open for business Sunday after a community celebration Saturday.

Sherman, born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, said the new station has drawn more volunteers than he could have hoped for.

"There's new enthusiasm in this community that wasn't here before," said the captain who has served in the LAPD nearly 24 years. "This will clearly be one of my most memorable experiences - helping build Topanga. I'm pretty proud of that."

The criminal element, however, might be a little less enthused about Sherman's plans.

"There's a gang area right here that's going to get a lot of attention from the Police Department," he said.

One of the Valley's most active gangs, Canoga Park Alabama, is in the station's sights.

The Topanga Division is one of two new LAPD stations opening Sunday. The other, the Olympic Division, is located near Koreatown.
Read it all here.

Then try to answer the following question: Where is the new police station? I'm not looking for "all the news that's fit to print." I just want to know the key detail of the news story!

Fortunately, we web-savvy people can find the LAPD's own press release with the street address. Which is very helpful, since it turns out the new Topanga Division is near, but not on, Topanga Canyon Blvd.

At least it's in Canoga Park.