G-Fin™: U.S.A.: Economic Brief – 03.13.15
Producer Price Index
The Producer Price Index for final demand fell 0.5% in February.
Final demand prices moved down 0.8% in January and 0.2% in December.
In February, the index for final demand services decreased 0.5% and prices for final demand goods declined 0.4%.
U.S. Import and Export Price Indexes
U.S. import prices increased 0.4% in February following declines of 3.1% in January and 2.5% in December.
An upturn in fuel prices led the February rise.
Prices for U.S. exports edged down 0.1% in February, after a 1.9-percent drop the previous month.
Employer Costs for Employee Compensation
Private industry employers spent an average of $31.32 per hour worked for employee compensation in December 2014.
Private industry costs averaged $2.16 per hour worked for paid leave benefits and $2.50 for legally required benefits.
Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey
There were 5.0 million job openings on the last business day of January, little changed from December.
Hires decreased to 5.0 million and separations were little changed at 4.8 million in January.
Annual levels and rates for 2014 are now available.
Gilmer County Board of Education Regular Meeting - 03.16.15 - Today
Gilmer County Board of Education
Gilmer County High School
Monday, March 16, 2015 – 6:00 PM
I. CALL TO ORDER - Roll Call by President
II. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
IV. CONSENT AGENDA-NEW BUSINESS
A. Minutes: February 25, 2015
B. Budget Supplements & Transfers
C. Financial Statement/Treasurer’s Report
D. Accounts Payable
E. Student Transfers
F. School Volunteers
G. Field Trips
A list of invoices is available for review in the Central Office.
V. REVIEW & CONSIDER REVISIONS OF DELEGATION POLICY
VI. MASONIC CORNERSTONE - GILMER COUNTY ELEMENTARY
VII. SUPERINTENDENT’S INFORMATION/ACTION
A. 2015 Spring Break & Calendar
B. Request for Purchase-Technology
C. LIREC Grant AND Policy 2512
VIII. REPORTS/DISCUSSION/FOLLOW-UP ACTION
A. C-GCC - Dr. Carl Armour – February 26, 2015
B. RESA 7- Dr. William Simmons
World News 150316
INDIAN MAN RESPONDS TO DOCUMENTARY ON INDIAN RAPE WITH HIS OWN DOCUMENTARY ON BRITISH RAPE
The furor over “India’s Daughter,“ a documentary by British filmmaker Leslee Udwin that examines a horrific 2012 rape case in New Delhi, has been remarkable. Last week, an official release of the film was blocked in India after a police complaint, but the documentary had already made its way onto YouTube and made headlines around the world.
Now, a number of Indian outlets are reporting about a tit-for-tat video made by an Indian man that attempts to draw attention to Britain’s own rape problem. Titled “United Kingdom’s Daughters” and produced by Harvinder Singh, it was uploaded to YouTube earlier this week and became a Twitter trending topic in India on Thursday.
The video, a low-budget production, begins with a series of “facts” about sexual assault and rape in Britain, set to music and still images. In this section, it asserts that 250 people are raped daily in Britain, and that 10% of rape cases result in a conviction. Pointedly, it says that a third of Britons believe women are responsible for rape – apparently a reference to the horrific comments made by a rapist in “India’s Daughter” – and that fewer women die as a result of rape in Britain as they “resist less.“
Some of the facts featured at the start of the documentary match up with attributable sources: Statistics suggest that there around 230 rape cases a day in England and Wales. Rape conviction rates are around 10% in Britain, and at least one study has shown a third of Britons blame the victims in rape cases. Other statements are much harder to comprehend. One simply says “United Kingdom 5th at the World’s Rape List,“ apparently a reference to a dubious list published a few years ago. Importantly, there appears to be no real evidence women in Britain resist any less than Indian women.
After this, the film then cuts into what appears to be a British documentary about sexual assault in Britain, before again cutting to another British show on the same subject – ironically, both appear to have been initially shown on the BBC, which broadcast “India’s Daughter.“ The video ends with a message that suggests rape is a global problem, not simply one for India.
In comments on social media, “United Kingdom’s Daughters” has earned praise for exposing Britain’s problems – some, for example, asked Singh to look into Britain’s recent pedophilia scandals. Others were simply happy that he had shown India wasn’t the only country with a problem, despite an international reputation many feel is unfair.
In contrast, however, a number of viewers felt the video missed the point by framing it as a dispute along national lines – a number of Indian citizens were involved in the making of “India’s Daughter,“ for example, and the 2012 Delhi case prompted a huge outpouring of anger within India. “Pointing fingers at others doesn’t absolve ourselves from our own crime or guilt,“ one YouTube user wrote.
GILMER COUNTY FARM BUREAU TO HOST EDUCATIONAL DINNER MEETING - 03.19.15 - Thursday
The Gilmer County Farm Bureau will be having their second Educational Dinner Meeting on Thursday, March 19, at 6:00 PM at the Senior Center in Glenville.
We are fortunate enough to have Bruce Loyd Lewis County Extension Agent, as our speaker for the night.
Bruce will be talking about Invasive Weeds and Plants, along with some solutions on how to manage this problem.
One of Bruce’s expertise is in Pesticide use and safety, as well as brush and weed control.
Bruce has a B.S. in Dairy Science from Virginia Tech and a M.S. in Animal Science from Penn State.
Educational Dinner Meetings are open to everyone.
We encourage you to attend and learn more about Invasive weeds and Plants.
The dinner will be at 6:00 PM followed by our speaker, Bruce Loyd.
The cost of the dinner will be $5.00.
If you choose not to come to the dinner, the speaker will begin his presentation at 6:45 -7:00 PM, which is free to the public.
If you plan to attend the dinner please contact Farm Bureau Members Jane Collins at 304.462.7747 or Pat Nestor at 304.462.4318 by Friday March 13……to reserve your meal.
CGCC Offers Welding Technology Night Classes for Adults - Register by 03.20.15
Welding Technology Class: The class would be an evening welding course.
The class will run 3 hours per week for 10 weeks.
A minimum of 5 students is needed.
The following areas of study may be available:
• SMAW (Stick)
• GMAW (Mig) Steel
• GMAW (Mig) Aluminum
• FCAW (Mig) Steel
• GTAW (Tig) Steel
• GTAW (Tig) Aluminum
• Oxy-fuel Cutting
• Oxy-fuel Welding
• Oxy-fuel Brazing
• Plasma Arc Cutting
• Air Carbon Arc (gouging)
• Computer assisted plasma Cutting
The program also offer training and testing for WV State Certification in plate and pipe welding.
The cost of the class will be $250.
If you are interested in any of these areas of Welding Technology and would like to enroll in the course please call Calhoun-Gilmer Career Center at 304.354.6151 by March 20, 2015.
Classes would begin the following week.
All fees need to be paid at the beginning of the first class.
The Class Title: Basic Adult Welding Class
All fees are paid to Calhoun- Gilmer Career Center
Order Seedlings Now for Spring Planting
West Virginia Division of Forestry officials at Clements State Tree Nursery are taking orders for seedlings for the 2015 spring planting season.
Customers can order seedlings via the online storefront, www.wvcommerce.org/ClementsNursery, or by calling 304.675.1820. Trees are shipped by mail or available for pickup at the facility in West Columbia, 11 miles north of Point Pleasant.
Clements Nursery is West Virginia’s only forest tree nursery, selling bare-root seedlings to in-state customers and those in neighboring states. Seedlings are grown from seed sources within West Virginia and surrounding states and are either native trees or ones genetically suitable for planting in the region.
Among this year’s inventory are tulip poplar, redbud, sugar maple and sycamore. The nursery has six species of oak for sale: white, red, chestnut, sawtooth, Chinkapin and English. Two species of evergreens, Scotch pine and Norway spruce, also are available.
All trees are bare-root seedlings and are 1-2 years old. Seedlings are sold in bundles of 25. Prices depend on the number of seedlings ordered, and there is a 30 percent discount offered on orders of 5,000 or more.
The nursery will accept orders through April 30, 2015.
Order online at www.wvcommerce.org/ClementsNursery or call 304.675.1820.
C-GCC: Adult Basic Education
78.75% passing rate!!!!
That is the current status of the new West Virginia High School Equivalency exam.
That means that out of every one hundred people that take the test, almost eighty of them pass it.
So if you have been scared off from taking the new test, don’t be!
Adult Basic Education can do much more than prepare you for the new High School Equivalency test.
We can also help with job search, resume writing, typing, and computer literacy.
In addition, English as a Second Language and Literacy classes are offered upon demand.
Classes are available in both Gilmer and Calhoun Counties.
Calhoun County classes will be held at the Career Center on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 11:30 AM to 3:00 PM.
Gilmer County classes will be held at St. Marks Church on Tuesday and Thursday from 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM.
Please call 304.354.6151 x106 for more information.
First Baptist Church: Baked Steak Dinner - 03.22.15
Baked Steak Dinner
A Baked Steak Dinner will be held on Sunday, March 22, 2015 to support the FBC Cancer Fund for Gilmer County.
The dinner will be held at the First Baptist Church of Glenville from 12:00 to 3:00.
Take out orders will be available at 11:30.
If you have any questions or want to call to place an order, call the church at 304.462.7015.
The dinner consists of:
Mashed Potatoes / Gravy
The cost of the dinner is by donation.
(All proceeds go to the FBC Cancer Fund for Gilmer County)
Israel Led Way with Nuclear Secrets
Iran may be following the path of another country as it seeks clandestinely to develop a capability to produce nuclear weapons.
Was Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remembering his own country’s success in hiding its nuclear weapons program in the 1960s from U.S. inspectors when he questioned whether inspections will prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon?
“Iran not only defies inspectors, it also plays a pretty good game of hide-and-cheat with them,” Netanyahu told a joint meeting of Congress.
Excuse the metaphor, but the elephant in the House chamber was that Israel blazed a trail decades ago. Its own clandestine building of nuclear weapons facilities in the Negev desert began 60 years ago, and the country now has about 200 nuclear bombs and missile warheads.
When Israel began building a reactor with France’s help, its officials in June 1960 described it to the U.S. Embassy there as “a textile plant” and later as “a metallurgical research installation,” according to a March 1964 memo prepared for then-national security adviser McGeorge Bundy.
In December 1960, then-Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion announced in the Knesset that the building of a 24-megawatt reactor at Dimona would not be completed for four years. It was, he said, “intended exclusively for peaceful purposes.”
At a Jan. 4, 1961, meeting with then-U.S. Ambassador to Israel Ogden Reid, Ben-Gurion agreed to allow U.S. scientists to visit the reactor provided there were no leaks of information.
The first visit was in May 1961, and the scientists reported that the reactor was “entirely as advertised.”
On May 30, 1961, Ben-Gurion met with President John F. Kennedy at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City and said that a second reactor was for power but that in a few years Israel might build a pilot plutonium separation plant. He added that there was “no intention to develop weapons capacity now,” according to a State Department memo.
The memo adds that Kennedy stated it was in both the United States’ and Israel’s interest that Middle East countries be assured the reactor and associated buildings were for peaceful purposes.
When in September 1962 U.S. scientists made their second visit to Dimona, they reported that what they saw was larger than expected and “certainly not a power reactor.” Although they saw no evidence of preparations for a nuclear weapon, they were “given only 40 minutes to examine the site and access (was) barred to one large building,” according to the Bundy memo.
On April 2, 1963, after learning that Israel was planning to build a third reactor, Kennedy met in the Oval Office with Shimon Peres, then Israel’s deputy defense minister, who Kennedy knew headed management of the nuclear program. Kennedy asked about activities at Dimona.
Peres responded, “I can tell you most clearly that we will not introduce nuclear weapons to the region, and certainly we will not be the first,” according to released Israeli notes of the session.
In July 1963, after learning that an agreement for regular U.S. visits to Dimona had been breached, Kennedy wrote to the new Israeli prime minister, Levi Eshkol.
U.S. commitment to Israel “could be seriously jeopardized if it should be thought we were unable to obtain reliable information on a subject so vital to peace as the question of Israel’s effort in the nuclear field,” Kennedy wrote. U.S. scientists should have unlimited access to all sites at the Dimona complex, he said.
A month later Eshkol responded, underscoring peaceful uses, and later a U.S. inspection team confirmed that there was no weapons-making capability.
On March 10, 1965, during the Lyndon Johnson administration, Eshkol put the Peres formula in writing, signing a memorandum of understanding that Israel would not be the first country to “introduce” nuclear weapons to the Middle East.
By January 1968, a memo prepared for Johnson on the eve of an Eshkol visit said that though “irregular” Dimona visits had led to reasonable confidence that a weapons program was not underway, there was no “guarantee that production facilities were not being built elsewhere.” The memo added, “The Israeli government is probably determined to preserve its nuclear option.”
Intelligence also showed that Israel was working with a French company on a “surface-to-surface ballistic missile system with a nuclear-carrying capacity,” according to the memo.
President Richard Nixon’s decision for the United States to sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty in February 1969 raised the issue of what to do about Israel. An April 1969 State Department memo was one of several saying that “intelligence indicates that Israel is rapidly developing a capability to produce and deploy nuclear weapons, and to deliver them by surface-to-surface missiles or by plane.”
The U.S. scientific team making a one-day visit to Dimona in early July 1969 reported being constrained, but did not protest “their host’s obvious pushing and hurrying past points at which they indicated a desire for a closer look,” according to a declassified State Department memo.
At a Sept. 26, 1969, White House meeting, Nixon and Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir agreed that Israel would not test atomic weapons, disclose possession of them or threaten any country with them.
Nixon in turn would stop pressuring Israel to join the treaty, U.S. visits to Dimona would end and Washington would tolerate but not acknowledge Israel’s nuclear weapons program.
Iran is following Israel’s path to a nuclear weapons capability.
At the same time, Israel’s own nuclear stockpile blocks serious consideration of President Barack Obama’s proposal for a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty or a Middle East nuclear-weapons-free zone agreement.
Both proposals have Iran’s verbal support and would present another route toward limiting Tehran’s path to a nuclear weapon.
~~ Walter Pincus ~~
G-Comm™: Hoppy’s Commentary - So, What Happened Under the Capitol Dome?
It will take a few days for the dust to settle and sort out everything that happened during the just-completed 60-day regular session of the Legislature, but here are some initial observations.
—The great success of the session is the passage of a series of legal reforms. These often complicated and nuanced bills don’t grab the easy headlines, but they should go a long way in reducing the perception of the state as a “judicial hellhole.” Taken together, the reforms represent a “jobs bill” for the state. The Legislature passed a total of 12 legal reform bills.
—The modification of the state’s prevailing wage law is also an improvement. The changes mean workers on big state projects, such as building a new school, will be paid closer to market wages. Currently, the state uses a flawed system which, according to research here and in other states, drives up the cost to taxpayers for public projects.
—While some of the Legislature’s most conservative lawmakers pushed hard for a law eliminating the need for a permit to carry a concealed weapon, many more succumbed to the pressure from gun rights groups. The bill passed both chambers overwhelmingly. Privately, some lawmakers who voted for the bill now hope Governor Tomblin will veto it.
—The House of Delegates did an about face on what appeared to be a reasonable compromise on a bill that would permit forced pooling/lease integration for Marcellus Shale gas well drilling. Earlier, the House approved the bill 60-40, but when the bill came back from the Senate, it failed in the House on a 49-49 vote.
—Charter schools have become a viable option in 42 states and Washington, D.C., for parents and students fed up with failing schools, but West Virginia remains behind the curve. Lawmakers failed in the final hours to pass SB 14. In the end, the Legislature also decided not to repeal the controversial Common Core standards. That’s a relief to the state Board of Education, but now the Board and Superintendent Michael Martirano must do a better job of addressing parents’ and teachers’ concerns about the new standards.
—“Christmas tree” bills that include several apparently unrelated topics either pass because they have something for everyone or collapse under their own weight. This year, the bill that would have changed the state’s fireworks laws, permitted smoking in casinos and raised the cigarette tax by $1 over two years fell apart on the last day. The biggest loser here is Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort in Hancock County, which fears a loss of business when a new county-wide smoking ban takes affect July 1st.
—So, what about the roads? Neither the Governor nor lawmakers planned to do anything big this session to generate substantially more money to fix the roads. Yes, there are plans to study the Division of Highways to look for savings and a few extra million tucked in here and there for pothole patching, but I suspect when lawmakers return home they will get an earful from their constituents who are weaving around and bouncing through our pothole-filled roads.
Confused About Wheat and Gluten? Here Are 4 Facts That Will Surprise You
Is wheat a “perfect, chronic poison,“ in the words of Wheat Belly author William Davis, or an innocuous staple that has been demonized to promote a trendy line of gluten-free products? I dug into the issue of wheat and its discontents recently, and walked away with some informed conjectures, but also a sense that the science is deeply unsettled. Now, a group of Cornell researchers (joined by one from Thailand) have performed a great service: For a paper published in the journal Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety, they’ve rounded up and analyzed the recent science on wheat and the potential pitfalls of eating it. Here are the key takeaways:
• Eating wheat may contribute to an array of health problems. When we eat wheat and other grains, we’re ingesting seeds—things that evolved to protect their nutrients against a variety of predators until they’re released by germination to fuel the growth of a seedling. So there’s no surprise that they contain “structures that are difficult for digestion to break down,“ as the paper puts it. Everyone knows about celiac disease—a genetic condition in which gluten, a wheat protein, triggers a severe autoimmune response that damages the small intestine. The authors note (as I did in my recent piece) that research suggests that celiac rates have risen by as much as a factor of four over the past half century—but it still only affects at most 2 percent of the population. Wheat allergy is another well-established condition involving gluten and other wheat proteins, but it’s even less common, affecting somewhere between 0.2 percent and 0.5 percent of the population. The paper’s lead author, Lisa Kissing Kucek, told me she found no evidence of changes in wheat-allergy prevalence.
• But unless you have celiac or an allergy, gluten might be largely beside the point.According to the researchers, most of us can tolerate gluten. But we have more trouble with another component of wheat called fructans, assemblages of fructose molecules that typically behave like dietary fiber—they’re “generally beneficial for most individuals by promoting the growth of healthy gut probiotics, improving stool frequency, and adding fecal bulk,“ the authors note. But the authors point to emerging research suggesting that fructans are one of a group of carbs called FODMAPs (short for “fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols”) that for some people cause “unexplained bloating, belching, distension, gas, abdominal pain, or diarrhea,“ as a recent paper by Georgia Regents University researchers put it.
The catch is that wheat is by no means the only foodstuff that contains fructans or FODMAPs. “Fructans are also found in 15 percent of all flowering plants, including artichoke, banana, broccoli, garlic, leek bulb, melon, onions, white peach, and rye,“ the authors report; while FODMAPs are found in beans, milk, stone fruit, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts. And the food industry has seized upon a non-wheat-derived fructan called inulin as a food additive—it’s even used to “improve structure, color, taste, and fiber content in gluten-free breads,“ the authors note.
Irritable bowel syndrome, which affects between 11.5 percent and 14.1 percent of the population, is the most well-known condition linked to fructans and FODMAPs. Another one is a disorder I’d never heard of, fructose malabsorption, which could afflict as much as 38 percent of the population, though the authors note that no large-scale epidemiological studies have been done to firmly establish how common it is. People with fructose malabsorption can’t absorb the free fructose present in the digestive tract, and the “unabsorbed fructose undergoes bacterial fermentation and induces abdominal symptoms, such as pain, bloating, and altered bowel habit,“ the authors report. They note that irritable bowel syndrome, fructose malabsorption, and nonceliac wheat sensitivity “share a broad array of symptoms” and that “misdiagnosis is common” among them.
But since nonceliac wheat sensitivity affects less than 1 percent of people and the other two maladies appear to be much more common, it seems to me that wheat is taking the bulk of the blame for conditions linked to a much broader category of foods. The rise of fructose malabsorption, which is an emerging diagnosis and not fully understood, implicates another controversial foodstuff: high-fructose corn syrup. The authors note that overall fructose consumption has surged in the last 30 years, “largely due” to a 60.8 percent jump in high-fructose corn syrup sweetener availability since 1978.
• “Premodern” wheat varieties are not a panacea.A lot of anti-wheat sentiment targets modern breeding. The idea goes that wheat varieties developed before 1950 contain simpler proteins and are thus easier to digest than the strains that now dominate bread production. The authors found a grain (so to speak) of truth to back up this critique: Modern wheat does tend on average to contain slightly more celiac-triggering proteins than modern varieties, but not universally so; some old varieties are highly reactive and some new varieties have low reactivity. Overall, the scientific literature “does not support” the claim that “consuming ancient or heritage wheat prevents sensitivity,“ they found.
What’s more, some heritage wheat varieties also appear to contain higher levels of fructans, they found. “If you have a wheat sensitivity, it’s important to know what’s causing it” before you make dietary decisions, Kissing Kucek said. The ancient wheat variety einkorn, for example, is “particularly promising for producing fewer immunotoxic effects in celiac research studies,“ the authors conclude. But it also (based on limited data) seems to have higher fructan levels, meaning that it could trigger more discomfort among the fructan-sensitive than standard wheat.
• All of that said, gluten does matter, and here’s why.Let’s go back to the fact that celiac rates seem to have risen over the past half century. Kissing Kucek said that for the genetically susceptible, celiac can be a latent condition that is triggered after years of exposure to gluten. The paper highlights two factors that have increased people’s exposure to gluten over the past half century—both of which I focused on in my piece published online a few weeks ago. The first is the practice of adding isolated wheat gluten to a variety of products, including bread. A wheat-processing byproduct called vital wheat gluten is now “commonly” added to commercial whole wheat bread, and it’s also widely added to processed meats, reconstituted seafood (think imitation crab), and certain vegetarian meat substitutes. And that’s not all—the authors point to a 2010 Australian study finding gluten and other wheat byproducts in nearly a third of supermarket processed-food products (as a form of protein, gluten is cheaper than soy or whey, the authors found, making it an attractive protein booster).
Then there’s industrial bread-baking, with its rapid-rising doughs driven by isolated yeasts. The authors note (again, as I did in my piece), that longer rises with sourdough starters (which are a diverse community of yeasts and bacteria) reduces the reactive gluten in bread doughs. Importantly, the research team adds that while sourdough breads have less reactive gluten than industrial loaves, they certainly aren’t safe for people with celiac or wheat allergy. Their main advantage, Kissing Kucek told me, is that they can help stave off the onset of celiac in people who are genetically susceptible to it by reducing their exposure. As for fructans, the diverse microbial cultures in sourdough can “decrease, but not eliminate” them, too, she added.
My main takeaway from this exhaustive report on the still-unsettled science around wheat is this: The role of wheat in our health is a complex topic—one not well illuminated by marketing efforts like the ever-burgeoning “gluten-free” one. For the 98 percent or so of people not suffering from celiac or wheat allergy, it seems wise to stick to sourdough-style bread and avoid foods laden with additives like inulin, high-fructose corn syrup, and vital wheat gluten.
~~ Tom Philpott - Mother Jones ~~
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS - 03.08.15
1. “The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins (Riverhead)
2. “Prodigal Son” by Danielle Steel (Delacorte)
3. “The Assassin” by Clive Cussler and Justin Scott (G.P Putnam’s Sons)
4. “One Wish” by Robyn Carr (Harlequin MIRA)
5. “The Buried Giant” by Kazuo Ishiguro (Knopf)
6. “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah (St. Martin’s Press)
7. “A Spool of Blue Thread” by Anne Tyler (Knopf)
8. “Dead Heat” by Patricia Briggs (Ace)
9. “Private Vegas” by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro (Little, Brown)
10. “Mightier than the Sword” by Jeffrey Archer (St. Martin’s Press)
11. “Leaving Berlin” by Joseph Kanon (Atria)
12. “Obsession in Death” by J.D. Robb (G.P. Putnam’s Sons)
13. “Heir to the Jedi” by Kevin Hearne (Del Rey/Lucas)
14. “Gray Mountain” by John Grisham (Doubleday)
15. “The Whites” by Richard Price (Henry Holt and Co.)
1. “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying up” by Marie Kondo (Ten Speed)
2. “Being Mortal” by Atul Gawande (Metropolitan)
3. “The 20/20 Diet” by Phil McGraw (Bird Street Books)
4. “Killing Patton” by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard (Henry Holt and Co.)
5. “Bold” by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler (Simon & Schuster)
6. “Goddesses Never Age” by Christiane Northrup (Hay House)
7. “Effortless Healing” by Joseph Mercola (Harmony)
8. “Yes Please” by Amy Poehler (Dey Street Books)
9. “Girl in a Band” by Kim Gordon (Morrow/Dey Street)
10. “Money: Master the Game” by Tony Robbins (Simon & Schuster)
11. “Get What’s Yours” by Laurence Kotlikoff, Philip Moeller and Paul Solman (Simon & Schuster)
12. “Thug Kitchen” by Thug Kitchen (Rodale)
13. “The Food Babe Way” by Vani Hari (Little, Brown)
14. “H is for Hawk” by Helen Macdonald (Grove)
15. “You Can, You Will” by Joel Osteen (FaithWords)
MASS MARKET PAPERBACKS
1. “The Target” by David Baldacci (Vision)
2. “One Wish” by Robyn Carr (Harlequin MIRA)
3. “Festive in Death” by J.D. Robb (Berkley)
4. “Close to Home” by Lisa Jackson (Kensington/Zebra)
5. “The Longest Ride” (movie tie-in) by Nicholas Sparks (Grand Central Publishing)
6. “The Bootlegger” by Clive Cussler and Justin Scott (Berkley)
7. “American Sniper” (movie tie-in) by Chris Kyle (Harper)
8. “A Real Prince” by Debbie macomber (Mira)
9. “Missing You” by Harlan Coben (Dell)
10. “The City” by Dean Koontz (Bantam)
11. “The Heist” by Daniel Silva (Harper)
12. “Power Play” by Danielle Steel (Dell)
13. “The Apple Orchard” by Susan Wiggs (Mira)
14. “The Immortal Who Loved Me” by Lynsay Sands (Avon)
15. “Sight Unseen” by Iris Johansen and Roy Johansen (St. Martin’s Press)
1. “American Sniper” (movie tie-in) by Chris Kyle (William Morrow)
2. “Invisible” by James Patterson and David Ellis (Grand Central Publishing)
3. “The Collector” by Nora Roberts (Berkley)
4. “The Husband’s Secret” by Liane Moriarty (Berkley)
5. “The Boys in the Boat” by Daniel James Brown (Penguin Press)
6. “Still Alice: A Novel” (movie tie-in) by Lisa Genova (Pocket)
7. “Mean Streak” by Sandra Brown (Grand Central Publishing)
8. “Unbroken” (movie tie-in) by Laura Hillenbrand (Random House)
9. “Fifty Shades of Grey” (movie tie-in) by E.L. James (Vintage)
10. “Unbroken” by Laura Hillenbrand (Random House)
11. “Wild” (movie tie-in) by Cheryl Strayed (Vintage)
12. “The Girls of Mischief Bay” by Susan Mallery (Mira)
13. “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman (Moody/Northfield)
14. “Life Is _______” by Judah Smith (Thomas Nelson)
15. “10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse” by J.J. Smith (Atria)
Horoscopes: March 16, 2015
Uranus and Pluto are playing a high-stakes game the likes of which will not be repeated for more than three decades. For this one, we’ll need to be daring and courageous, willing to do what’s radical, rebellious and even ridiculous. Note that sometimes acceptance, deep and real, can be the most radical move of all.
ARIES (March 21-April 19). This age-old business dictum will apply to you today: Sell them what they want; give them what they need. Also, note that it’s your attitude and not your skill level that will make a difference in your income.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20). You are capable of being fiendishly clever but will use your powers for good. Mostly you see the value of charming a certain someone, and this person is ready for your best moves.
GEMINI (May 21-June 21). With those you love, there is a kind of “logic-free” zone today. You’re willing to extend your grace to include the things they say that don’t make total sense, as much of it won’t.
CANCER (June 22-July 22). What’s required is a perspective shift toward the lighter side. It’s a game, and you’ll go out there and win the game once you’ve approached it for the game it is.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22). They might not like your ideas today, and that’s nothing to take personally, though it might bug you only because you know how right you really are. Approach again and tell them, “Let’s rework it.”
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22). What you want to do has been done before and to great effect, and so all you have to do is tell your people how well it went. Describe in detail the wonderful future that awaits.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 23). The actions of the day bring both intended and unintended consequences. The less you try to control it the better. Grace will land you in interesting circumstances.
SCORPIO (Oct. 24-Nov. 21). You have a tendency to overlook that which you know very well. You need good friends around you who will point out the qualities they admire in you, which are likely the ones you are blind to now.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21). The tendency under this sky will be to stew and obsess on things. There may be an intellectual or comic benefit to doing so, but that doesn’t make it healthy.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19). Egyptian pharaohs weren’t the only people to bury themselves with their belongings as if it were possible to take it with them. Your realization that it’s all borrowed stuff will guide your choices today.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18). It’s no use holding a mental seance for something you know is safely, patently gone. For you, this message is a reminder, but for the one who is obsessing about you, it’s a directive.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20). For a while now, you’ve wanted to create some art. It’s not a matter of getting a chance; it’s a matter of seeing the chance. Try making quick things out of the sources available to you in any moment.
TODAY’S BIRTHDAY. You set your expectations of this year accordingly and find joy and satisfaction in many experiences. You have a gift for bringing people together to celebrate or make a difference in the world, and you’ll earn a role as a go-to social planner. April brings a windfall; June, a romantic surprise. Aquarius and Sagittarius people adore you. Your lucky numbers are: 2, 24, 31, 29 and 50.
FORGET YOUR TROUBLES, COME ON, GET LUCKY: Tomorrow’s St. Patrick’s Day celebration will happen under a friendly Aquarius moon, promoting goodwill, good fun and good luck. Shamrocks, the color green and leprechauns aren’t the only symbols that bring luck during this celebration of all things Irish. What talisman could your sign carry and keep to inspire greater fortunes? ARIES: The seeds of a puffy dandelion say that luck is in the air. Capture them in a glass to remind you that everything can change with a wish. TAURUS: Lentils are lucky, which is why in many cultures they are eaten on the first day of the year. Carry a few dried ones in your pocket for prosperity. GEMINI: A $2 bill in your wallet speaks to your duality and attracts money-doubling. CANCER: Driftwood is a beautiful call to your water-sign nature. LEO: Because your sign rules the heart, heart-shaped rocks that are naturally carved by wind and water speak to you. Collect as many as you see. VIRGO: A symbol of Lady Luck (typically a curvy bombshell swinging from a horseshoe) is another dimension of the maiden your sign is named for. Stay tuned for part two, Libra through Pisces, tomorrow!
CELEBRITY PROFILES: On this day in 1751, the father of the United States Constitution, the author of the Bill of Rights and the fourth American president, James Madison, was born. The sun was in Pisces, a highly intuitive, compassionate and theatrical placement, while Madison’s moon was in intensely motivated Scorpio. Mercury, his communication planet, was in Aquarius, which is the sign of the people.
G-MM™: Meditation Moment 150316
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.
The Lord is thy keeper:
the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand.
The sun shall not smite thee by day,
nor the moon by night.
The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil:
he shall preserve thy soul.
The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in
from this time forth, and even for evermore.
Finishing as You Started  (Galatians #25)
2-4 I only want you to tell me one thing: Did you receive the Holy Spirit by keeping the Law, or by faith, from hearing and believing the Gospel? Do you really intend to rely on your flesh, which could not begin your salvation, to perfect it? It would be insanity. Would you simply throw away the benefits of the tribulation you have suffered?
About the Daily Prayer BibleThe “Daily Prayer Bible” is a paraphrase translation. This means accuracy to the original text has been sacrificed, to make it more readable and readily understood. This is especially useful in the Epistles of Paul. Verses are often out of order and often explanatory matter is included in the actual translation.
It is part of a larger work, DP 3-Column Bible, a Bible translation with 3 different levels of literal accuracy, which you can access by clicking the link at the bottom of the Scripture section. We call the most readable and least accurate translation the “Daily Prayer Bible”. The middle translation (“The American Bible”) is what is called a “literal” translation, accurate to the original text but using English grammar and idioms.
The third translation is a unique transliterative text, called “Verbatim Bible”, that has an unparalleled degree of accuracy but is not readable except with difficulty. It gives the non-Greek-reading user the ability to see the inaccuracies and ambiguities that become invisible in even the best so-called “literal” translations, such as the NASB or our own American Bible..
Notes on Scripture
In classical education, students studied Rhetoric as a primary subject: the art of speaking and writing to persuade. Paul shows either some education, here, or a natural grasp of a persuasive technique. First, you ask a rhetorical question which the listener must, or will probably, answer “yes”. Then, you ask a second question, whose answer logically follows (or seems to follow) from the first. Third, you asks a powerful emotional question designed to make the listener want to take action based on the second.
So the first question Paul asks — “Did you receive the Spirit by works of law or by faith?” — is one which he has confidence that the listeners Paul’s epistles were written, but were primarily transmitted by having someone read them aloud, as few could read Greek and fewer still read it well. would answer “by faith.” Paul would have known, for a fact, that the churches of Galatia were convicted by faith, because he had personally founded the churches. The original members had received the Spirit by listening to him and believing what he said; and those who had joined after he had left would necessarily have been convinced by listening to the original members, and believing.
The congregants were primarily Gentile and thus found Christ without any exposure to the Law at all. Perhaps they knew a few odd habits of the Jews in their town, but they were not educated in the Law of Moses and certainly did not try to follow it. But even Jewish members would have to realize that their salvation had not come from Judaism, but from faith in Christ. If their Judaism had been sufficient for them, they would not have converted in the first place.
Then Paul, having established the necessity of faith in the forefront of the listeners’ minds, asks if they are stupid enough to think they can complete in the flesh what was started in the spirit. We can correctly make an inference here: Paul means that what was started by faith, in the spirit (or Spirit), can only be completed in the spirit. (A discussion of the difference between implication and inference (assumption) is badly needed at this point, but we will have to do it tomorrow. Look forward to it — it is a critical issue in Christianity.)
We discover an ambiguity from the Verbatim Translation. Paul could be saying, what was begun in the spiritual realm must be completed in the spiritual realm, that is, we will be saved by spiritual means and not by activities of the flesh; or he could mean to say, what was begun by receiving the Holy Spirit can only be accomplished by the Holy Spirit. Like so many ambiguities, this one is best resolved by understanding both meanings. We find salvation in our spirit, through the Holy Spirit — not in the flesh by virtue of the Holy Spirit (such as by good acts that the Spirit empowers us to do), not in our spirit by our own effort.
To be continued . . .