JoshComstock.com https://joshcomstock.com My official website and blog. Coffee recommended. Mon, 18 Jun 2018 21:58:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.7 https://i2.wp.com/joshcomstock.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/cropped-JLC_logo.png?fit=32%2C32&ssl=1 JoshComstock.com https://joshcomstock.com 32 32 21486545 Sovereign Grace https://joshcomstock.com/sovereign-grace/ https://joshcomstock.com/sovereign-grace/#respond Sun, 20 Aug 2017 19:00:25 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=884 The post Sovereign Grace appeared first on JoshComstock.com.

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I once was lost in darkest night
Yet thought I knew the way
The sin that promised joy and life
Had led me to the grave
I had no hope that You would own
A rebel to Your will
And if You had not loved me first
I would refuse You still

The date was Sunday, July 13, 1986. My father and his newly turned 5-year old son were riding to church that morning. We typically went to church as a family on Sunday, but I don’t particularly remember my mother or my only brother at the time, Jordan, riding in the car with us.

My dad was talking to me about sin and hell. I didn’t really know much about either, but I knew I didn’t want to go to hell when I died. I don’t recall much of that conversation, but I vaguely remember praying a prayer. My baptism which shortly followed is also a vague memory.

Life went on as I grew up in your typical middle-class, American-Christian home. We faithfully went to church three times a week, went to a Christian school from K5-12th, and even went to Bible college for a period of time. By the age of 25, I had easily heard over 6,000 sermons, and that’s a conservative estimate. By today’s Christian standards I knew a lot about God, but I truly didn’t know God.

I was a lost, depraved, unregenerate man.

I don’t at all doubt my father’s motive that sunny July day. He was doing what he felt was right in telling me about Christ. Unfortunately, I was too young to truly understand. If anything, I was probably nodding in agreement and praying out of love for my dad. What child wants to disappoint their father (or mother)? I believe that kids will do what they’re told or is suggested to them regarding spiritual things, simply to please or not disappoint their parents. I am thankful for my parents, and it is because of their example that I have a thirst for Truth.

I’m not saying God in His sovereignty cannot save a child. He saves whomever He wants when He wants. We don’t have any control over that. We don’t determine our day of salvation; God does. But I find most childhood conversions highly suspect because a child doesn’t really understand the Gospel. Most children when they are “converted” at these early ages still believe in Santa Claus. Problem? I believe so. Speaking from a childhood “conversion” experience, I urge parents of young children to please be careful of these things.

But as I ran my hell-bound race
Indifferent to the cost
You looked upon my helpless state
And led me to the cross
And I beheld God’s love displayed
You suffered in my place
You bore the wrath reserved for me
Now all I know is grace

josh-comstock-justin-peters

Fast forward 30 years. A friend of mine who goes to our church named Justin Peters wrote a book regarding childhood conversions called “Do Not Hinder Them.” My wife and I had been doing a Bible study with Justin and his wife Kathy for a few weeks at this time, and we were discussing his book which I had recently read. I was astounded at how many times his words would jump off the page to me; as if he intimately knew my life story.

About four to six months prior to reading Justin’s book, I had noticed my affections started to change. I was drawn like a powerful magnet to the things of God. I was earnestly studying the Bible for the first time in my life. I replaced my daily politics/talk-radio podcast routine of the last 10 years with sermons and other theological teachings. I was reading books and commentaries about the Bible. My view of sin had radically changed. I was striving to be holy as God is holy. To sum it up in a sentence, I felt like a dehydrated, wilted 35-year old sponge under an open fire-hydrant of God’s sovereign grace. What was going on?

Through some serious and numerous conversations with Justin—who told me he had a similar salvation experience as well—I realized that somewhere within this brief aforementioned time frame of four to six months I had been converted! I believe March 28, 2017, was the day I fully realized my regeneration.

This was the day that I was literally driven to my knees by the realization of God’s salvific grace. I could not move. I was sobbing uncontrollably over the fact, that God, before the foundations of the world, had loved me first! The Holy Spirit had regenerated my heart and breathed new life into my soul. What an amazing, and truly humbling grace that Christ chose and loved me before I even existed!

Now, Lord, I would be Yours alone
And live so all might see
The strength to follow Your commands
Could never come from me
Oh Father, use my ransomed life
In any way You choose
And let my song forever be
My only boast is You

Friend, God would have done us no wrong if He sent us all to an eternal hell. Every single one of us is born spiritually dead, (Ephesians 2) running as fast as we can to the fire. Romans 3:11 tells us that none seek after God. Without God’s sovereign grace, we would all spend an eternity facing God’s wrath.

I urge you, the reader of my testimony, to do what Paul urged the Corinthians to do when he said to examine yourself (2 Cor. 13:5) to see if you are in the faith. No doubt there are many people who had similar childhood experiences to mine that were not truly converted at that time. Do not rely on a vague memory of praying a cookie-cutter prayer. Nowhere in the New Testament will you find that salvation is about “accepting Jesus,” or “asking him in your heart.” It’s not there. What we are told again and again is to repent and believe.

Saturday, August 26, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. at the Marley Beach Campground, I will be getting scripturally baptized by my pastor, Jim Osman, at our church camp. All who can make it are invited; it would be great to celebrate this event with you. Praise be to God, great things He has done!

Hallelujah! All I have is Christ
Hallelujah! Jesus is my life

Music and words by Jordan Kauflin. © 2008 Sovereign Grace Praise (BMI). Sovereign Grace Music, a division of Sovereign Grace Churches. All rights reserved. Administrated worldwide at www.CapitolCMGPublishing.com, excluding the UK which is adm. by Integrity Music, part of the David C Cook family. www.SovereignGraceMusic.org

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Time to Change Those Apple ID Passwords https://joshcomstock.com/time-to-change-those-apple-id-passwords/ https://joshcomstock.com/time-to-change-those-apple-id-passwords/#respond Fri, 24 Mar 2017 20:24:17 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=499 This morning at breakfast, my friend Thomas told me about Apple being hacked and the need to change my password. Although it feels like I’m constantly updating passwords, it’s better safe than sorry. The short end of the story is, basically a group of London-based hackers have stolen 250 million Apple accounts and passwords, and are holding […]

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This morning at breakfast, my friend Thomas told me about Apple being hacked and the need to change my password. Although it feels like I’m constantly updating passwords, it’s better safe than sorry. The short end of the story is, basically a group of London-based hackers have stolen 250 million Apple accounts and passwords, and are holding it for ransom.

So, in short, you need to update your Apple ID password as soon as you can. This should protect you from any unwanted result if they do indeed follow through on their threat.

Here’s how to change your Apple ID Password:

  1. Go to http://AppleID.apple.com
  2. Login with your current Apple ID credentials. HINT: Your Apple ID is your email address.
  3. Once logged in, you can scroll down and find the Change Password link.
  4. Once you update your password, you are finished.

Once you are done with the steps above, your iPhone/iPad, etc., will prompt you to update your new password on your device. Watch for this notification; it shouldn’t take too long.

After this process is complete, you might want to check to see if you have 2-Factor Authentication (sometimes referred to 2-step verification) turned on. The alternative is security questions, and this isn’t the most secure method.

2-Step Authentication will help keep your account secure from unwanted intrusion. You may remember back in 2014 when several celebrities had their Apple iCloud accounts hacked, and some not-so-flattering images of them were forever pushed out into cyberspace.

After this incident, Apple strengthened their security by creating their own 2-step verification as a security option. Now, when someone tries to login using your Apple ID credentials, you’ll get a notification on your iPhone asking if it was you.

This is a simple setup process, and I can’t recommend it enough.

two-factor-authentication

Here’s how to enable 2-Step Verification on your iPhone:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Scroll down to iCloud.
  3. Click on your name/email at the top of the screen (you may be prompted to sign in to your account).
  4. Click on Password & Security.
  5. If you see Two-Factor Authentication turned ON, there are no further steps. If it says OFF, proceed to number 6.
  6. Click on the “Turn On Two-Factor Authentication”.
  7. Apple ID Security will display. Click Continue.
  8. Next, you will receive a text message from Apple verifying your phone number. Click Continue. (If you see a warning message about outdated devices or to update devices, click ok.)
  9. Enter your (hopefully new) Apple ID Password and click Sign In.
  10. Two-Factor Authentication is now enabled.

You can check this authentication by logging back into Apple ID. You’ll see similar pictures as shown above. Anytime you login to an Apple device or your Apple iCloud account, you will be prompted to enter this verification code that displays on your iPhone.

If you receive this notification and you did not authorize it, you’ll have that peace of mind knowing your information is safe.

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#NeverTrump https://joshcomstock.com/nevertrump/ https://joshcomstock.com/nevertrump/#respond Sat, 23 Apr 2016 18:38:18 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=458 sycophant noun sy·co·phant \ˈsi-kə-fənt also ˈsī- & -ˌfant\ – a person who praises powerful people in order to get their approval trumpophant noun trump·o·phant \ˈtrumpə-fənt also ˈtrump- & -ˌfant\ – a person who praises Donald J. Trump in order to get their approval The people and organizations pictured above, were at one time considered Conservative. Let it be […]

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sycophant

noun sy·co·phant \ˈsi-kə-fənt also ˈsī- & -ˌfant\ – a person who praises powerful people in order to get their approval

trumpophant

noun trump·o·phant \ˈtrumpə-fənt also ˈtrump- & -ˌfant\ – a person who praises Donald J. Trump in order to get their approval

Trumpophants

click to enlarge

The people and organizations pictured above, were at one time considered Conservative. Let it be known, that their “conservatism” was for sale, and what they say going forward should be suspect at best. They are TRUMPOPHANTS.

#NEVERTRUMP

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A Memo to Donald Trump and His “Trumpkins” https://joshcomstock.com/a-memo-to-donald-trump/ https://joshcomstock.com/a-memo-to-donald-trump/#respond Sat, 27 Feb 2016 18:31:38 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=445 You cannot be a “strong Christian” as you claim, when you ferociously and continuously defend Planned Parenthood as you do. Your sans abortion argument is totally invalid, but makes a good soundbite. This is like saying “Jeffery Dahmer was a great man, and I supported him. Just not the killing and eating people part.” It’s […]

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You cannot be a “strong Christian” as you claim, when you ferociously and continuously defend Planned Parenthood as you do. Your sans abortion argument is totally invalid, but makes a good soundbite.

This is like saying “Jeffery Dahmer was a great man, and I supported him. Just not the killing and eating people part.” It’s illogical and it proves to everyone that you’re the complete and utter buffoon we watched during the last GOP Debate.

trump-rubio-cruz-gop-debate-houstonBut apparently, “Christians” and “evangelicals” like Sarah Palin, Liberty University’s Falwell, mega church Pastor Dr. Robert Jeffress, amongst others, don’t seem to care about your nonsense. They’re too angry at the incompetent Republican Establishment led by Reince Priebus, Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, Speaker Paul Ryan and others, that they can’t set aside their emotions and actually listen to what you say when you open the trash compactor you use for a mouth. If they did, perhaps they would’ve supported a true evangelical Constitutionalist like Ted Cruz, who’s actually spent his entire Senate career fighting these creeps.

Sure, this is a singular issue. But there are so many other issues in addition to this. But if common sense “Christians” can’t see your nonsense, why would any of them recognize the others? I get why those who don’t consider themselves Christian or evangelical don’t see it. But as a side note to my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ—to quote Star Wars, arguably the greatest movie of all time, “Who’s the more foolish; the fool, or the fool who follows him?”

I have to give it to amnesty loving Marco Rubio. All people hear you say is “build a wall, make America great again, and win, win, win.” The true irony in all of this? A Ted Cruz administration would actually do these things BETTER, not to mention constitutionally, than Donald “everybody loves me” Trump.

But go ahead, Trumpkins. Give into the hatred. Join the Dark Side.

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Bethlehem Star 2015 https://joshcomstock.com/bethlehem-star-2015/ https://joshcomstock.com/bethlehem-star-2015/#respond Thu, 02 Jul 2015 07:27:45 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=417 As always, it was a beautiful evening on Lake Pend Oreille in Sandpoint, Idaho this evening. The Bethlehem Star, which includes Jupiter and Venus, were on full display along with the blue-white star, Regulus. Just above the horizon, you’ll see Jupiter and Venus come within 1/3 of a degree of each other. Viewing conditions are best […]

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As always, it was a beautiful evening on Lake Pend Oreille in Sandpoint, Idaho this evening. The Bethlehem Star, which includes Jupiter and Venus, were on full display along with the blue-white star, Regulus.

Bethlehem StarJust above the horizon, you’ll see Jupiter and Venus come within 1/3 of a degree of each other. Viewing conditions are best about an hour after sunset when the sky is darker but the planets are still above the horizon. If you wait too long, the planets will set below the horizon and you’ll miss it.

To the upper right of Jupiter and Venus, you’ll see Regulus, a star approximately 3.5 times larger than our sun. Regulus is the lead member in the constellation Leo the Lion, and marks the heart of the lion which lies 78 light years away.

 

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iCloud Control Panel 4.0 and Outlook 2013 Configuration Errors https://joshcomstock.com/icloud-control-panel-4-0-outlook-2013-configuration-errors/ https://joshcomstock.com/icloud-control-panel-4-0-outlook-2013-configuration-errors/#respond Mon, 13 Oct 2014 17:42:54 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=389 When an iOS8 came out this fall, I was anticipating an update to the iCloud Control Panel as well. Sure enough, 4.0 was released out of beta and available for the general public to download and install. Anxiously awaiting to have everything in my Apple world updated, installed, and working seamlessly, I was frustrated to find […]

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When an iOS8 came out this fall, I was anticipating an update to the iCloud Control Panel as well. Sure enough, 4.0 was released out of beta and available for the general public to download and install. Anxiously awaiting to have everything in my Apple world updated, installed, and working seamlessly, I was frustrated to find that iCloud Control Panel 4.0 and Microsoft Outlook 2013 were not playing nice together.

icloud4.0Sure, I still have a Windows PC, running Windows 7 (don’t get me started on Windows 8; Windows Me was better IMO), and I use Microsoft Office, 64-bit. But before running this iCloud Control Panel upgrade, my iPhone, iPad, and Outlook synced flawlessly.  It wasn’t until after I installed this upgrade, that I couldn’t get Outlook to even register as being installed on my machine, according to iCP4. It kept saying I needed to install Outlook 2007 or greater in order for it to work. Obviously something wasn’t right.

I spent what felt like hours searching forums and message boards only to find several others with the same frustrations I had. Nobody really had a fix, at least one that worked for me. Some bloggers, instead of trying to troubleshoot the problem, would simply trash Outlook and encourage their readers to use the “awesome,” open-source email software, eMClient. So, that’s what I resorted to for a period of time.

I will say, eMClient is okay. It’s not all that it’s cracked up to be in my opinion, but it will work if that’s all you have to chose from. I liked Outlook’s UI and functionality better. Perhaps it’s just what you’re used to. Also, I didn’t want to pay $50 for email software when I’ve already paid for Office. eMClient is free for one email account, but if you’re like me and have multiple email accounts in which you manage, you will have to purchase the software after its free 30-day trial runs out.

After I exhausted every resource I could find in my search for iCP4 and Outlook 13 to work harmoniously together, I decided to resort to the last option: Restore my PC to its original factory settings and re-install all of my software and files. Sure, it’s a hassle, but it was the only sure chance that I felt would work. Something in my PC’s registry wasn’t right and was causing this software to conflict and result in an error.  Uninstalls and re-installs of Outlook and iCP4, and even repairs of this software didn’t work. Sigh.

If you’re not already backing up your computer files, you should be. I’m not just talking about an external hard drive. You need an offsite, secure, seamless backup like Carbonite to really do the job. It’s affordable and gives you peace of mind. However, in this case, time was of the essence, so I backed my files up to an external hard drive and began the factory restore process. Once everything was re-installed and Windows ran for the first time, I installed Microsoft Office 2013. Once that was completed, I installed a fresh version of iCloud Control Panel 4.0. Voila! Everything was back to normal!

It was a relief to see that the factory reset worked. Everything was connected and syncing like before. I did notice that after several Windows updates were installed that the Mail, Contacts, Calendars and Tasks option was unchecked again in iCP4, and appeared not to be working. In fact, I saw the same error I did before, prior to restoring my PC. This gave me a small freak-out moment, but a simple “repair” option in Add/Remove Programs of Office 2013 and iCP4 fixed this issue. It only happened this once, and it’s been working flawlessly since. Although the factory restore process is timely, it seemed to be the only way to resolve this conflict.

I’ve noticed that it’s good to do a factory restore and reset your computer–as if you just pulled it out of the box–once every 2 years or so. Over the years, and after several installs/uninstalls, sometimes the registry gets “clogged up” and the only way to clean it up properly is by starting over. I also noticed that my massive iTunes library loaded much quicker after this reset, and that the iTunes Store remembers my login details like it used to do, but hadn’t, in quite some time. So an added benefit for me.

Hopefully those who are still searching for a fix to this issue will come across this article, and will be able to do what’s necessary to get your software playing nice once again.

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Online Security Measures – Protect Yourself NOW! https://joshcomstock.com/online-security-measures-protect-now/ https://joshcomstock.com/online-security-measures-protect-now/#respond Sun, 10 Aug 2014 17:00:08 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=295 In today’s world, everything is done over the internet. This is not the same world it was 20 years ago. It’s not the same world it was 10 years ago. The digital age moves at lightspeed, and you will get plowed over if you don’t at least try to keep up. One of the most […]

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In today’s world, everything is done over the internet. This is not the same world it was 20 years ago. It’s not the same world it was 10 years ago. The digital age moves at lightspeed, and you will get plowed over if you don’t at least try to keep up. One of the most common issues people have is online account security. There are several reasons for this, one being insecure passwords. According to this TIME article, some of the worst passwords of 2013 include, “123456”, “password”, “iloveyou” amongst others.

online securityThe challenge with passwords doesn’t just stop at always remembering a strong password, but also choosing different, strong passwords for your accounts that you’ll remember. Good luck. You don’t want to give an online thief or hacker access to all of your accounts because you’ve created a Master Password (strong or not) that opens every door. Even variants of a master password can be easily figured out.

Many email services, including Gmail, Yahoo and Outlook (previously Hotmail), include an extra layer of security called 2-Step Verification. You need to have a mobile device in which you can receive text messages in order for this to work. The way 2-Step Verification works, is the provider i.e. Gmail, will remember your computer’s web browser by placing a “cookie” on your local computer. Keep in mind, if you use a different browser (Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc.) to access your email, you’ll have to repeat this process as it is browser and device specific.

During this setup process, it will ask you for your mobile device number. The provider will text you a 6-digit security code that you will need to provide during setup. This is 2-Step Verification. The first step is knowing the right password, the second step is receiving a text message on a device you own. Once you’ve completed this second step, there are settings you can check at the beginning of this process so that you don’t need to repeat this again. Simply check the box that says “Remember this computer/device.” For smartphones, you may be given the option to download the Google Authenticator App which in essence does the same thing, except no text is sent; you open the app and a random security code is generated for you.

Anytime someone, including yourself, tries to sign in to your email account on a new device (or new browser on a saved device), you will receive a text message with a security code. This code must be entered online before you can access your email on that device or browser. Imagine your email password acting like a flimsy screen door in a hurricane. Now, imagine if behind that flimsy screen door, there was a massive steel vault door that only you had the code to open. This is the security of 2-Step verification.  In fact, in the last month, I’ve received 2 text messages on my phone giving me a security code to enter. This was an attempt on my email from someone else besides me. I have multiple email accounts, all with 2-Step Verification enabled.   So it’s hard to say which account is trying to be accessed by a hacker or some bot. 2-Step Verification may be a minor hassle to setup, but it’s well worth it and gives you peace of mind.

You may have heard in recent days about a group of Russian hackers that stole 1.2 Billion username and password combinations, and more than 500 million email addresses from over 420,000 websites. Wowzers! Online security is being challenged every day. So outside of 2-Step Verification for some websites, how can you protect yourself on all the others that don’t offer this service? How can you create a strong, secure password for each website or online account, without duplicating a single password? Well, unless you’re Mike Ross and have a photographic memory, you probably can’t. However, there are some great services out there that can help you do just that–create online security with added peace of mind.

dashlane logoEnter Dashlane. Dashlane is maximum security for your online data. They use AES-256 bit Encryption (the world’s leading standard), your encryption key is not recorded–not even on their servers or your local device,  you have a choice whether or not you want to keep your data on one device, or you can sync it to multiple devices using AES-256 encryption, and they even offer 2-Step Verification through Google’s Authenticator App. You want secure? This is Fort Knox secure. Dashlane will randomly generate a strong, secure password for you (5-28 characters, your choice) and will automatically save it for you in their downloadable app. Whenever you go to that website again, it will automatically fill in your info, and/or log you in seamlessly. Dashlane even offers to store your banking, credit/debit card, and other personal information that you may need to use online. If you are currently using your browser to remember your password and private info, disable that feature immediately. It is unsafe, and you can read why, here.

Remember, your secure data is stored locally on your computer and is only accessible by entering 1 master password that you create at the beginning of the setup process. If you don’t want your information being synced to multiple devices, that is your prerogative. However, since Dashlane uses AES-256 Encryption to sync your information, you don’t really have anything to worry about. If you’re curious as to how strong AES-256 is, you can read this article. Dashlane offers their services for free, but if you want to sync multiple devices, they charge $29.99 per year for their service. Dashlane is available for Mac, PC, iPhone and Android. If you decide to sign up, use this link to get 6 months of premium service for FREE!! That’s a savings of $15 for your first year!

As mentioned at the beginning of this post, the digital age moves at lightspeed. If you’re going to continue using the internet, protect yourself. Don’t open yourself up to needless attacks. Dave Ramsey even has mentioned in his FPU classes about having a “Legacy Drawer” to keep your family prepared in case something happens to you. Part of the items kept in this legacy drawer, are all of your passwords to important things such as banking, bills, etc. Dashlane solves this problem and is also very affordable.

Don’t put your security vulnerabilities off any longer. Take some time after you read this post and enable 2-Step Verification on all of your email accounts that provide it. You can find 2-Step Verification under your email or account settings. While you’re at it, sign up for Dashlane as well and get peace of mind today.

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Perspective https://joshcomstock.com/perspective/ https://joshcomstock.com/perspective/#respond Fri, 15 Nov 2013 23:22:56 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=213 How many times have we heard, “It’s all about perspective!” Well if you’d like another great example of perspective, here’s the latest illustration that was given to me…and it’s brilliant! March 21, 2010  was the day the (not-so) Affordable Care Act passed the House. October 1, 2013 was the day all Americans were supposed to be able […]

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How many times have we heard, “It’s all about perspective!” Well if you’d like another great example of perspective, here’s the latest illustration that was given to me…and it’s brilliant!

March 21, 2010  was the day the (not-so) Affordable Care Act passed the House. October 1, 2013 was the day all Americans were supposed to be able to “shop the marketplace” and to finally buy “affordable” healthcare. Time that lapsed = 3 years, 6 months, 10 days.

December 7, 1941 was the deadly attack on Pearl Harbor, the “Day of Infamy.” Fast forward 3 years, 5 months, and 1 day until May 8, 1945 or VE Day, the day the WWII Allies formally accepted the unconditional surrender of Nazi Germany’s armed forces.

healthcare.govNow what this means, and to put this into perspective, is that in the time we were attacked at Pearl Harbor, to the day Germany surrendered, is still not enough time for this progressive federal government to build a working, functional healthcare website.

Mobilization of millions, building tens of thousands of tanks, planes, jeeps, subs, cruisers, destroyers, torpedoes, millions upon millions of guns, bombs, ammo, etc. Turning the tide in North Africa, Invading Italy, D-Day, Battle of the Bulge, Race to Berlin – all while we were also fighting the Japanese in the Pacific!!

And in that amount of time, the all-powerful, all-knowing Obama Administration can’t even build a working website, one with a whopping price-tag of $634 million…with no more than 6 people served.

death star

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Old Expressions Explained https://joshcomstock.com/old-expressions-explained/ https://joshcomstock.com/old-expressions-explained/#respond Fri, 27 Sep 2013 23:23:28 +0000 https://joshcomstock.com/?p=181 This came through my email a few weeks ago. I found it fascinating as I read it through, especially the first expression. Who knew? Early aircraft’s throttles had a ball on the end of it, in order to go full throttle the pilot had to push the throttle all the way forward into the wall […]

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This came through my email a few weeks ago. I found it fascinating as I read it through, especially the first expression. Who knew?

Early aircraft’s throttles had a ball on the end of it, in order to go full throttle the pilot had to push the throttle all the way forward into the wall of the instrument panel. Hence “balls to the wall” for going very fast. And now you know, the rest of the story.

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During WWII , U.S. airplanes were armed with belts of bullets which they would shoot during dogfights and on strafing runs. These belts were folded into the wing compartments that fed their machine guns. These belts measure 27 feet and contained hundreds of rounds of bullets. Often times, the pilots would return from their missions having expended all of their bullets on various targets. They would say, “I gave them the whole nine yards,” meaning they used up all of their ammunition.

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Did you know the saying “God willing and the creek don’t rise” was in reference to the Creek Indians and not a body of water? It was written by Benjamin Hawkins in the late 18th century. He was a politician and Indian diplomat. While in the south, Hawkins was requested by the President of the U.S. to return to Washington . In his response, he was said to write, “God willing and the Creek don’t rise.” Because he capitalized the word “Creek” it is deduced that he was referring to the Creek Indian tribe and not a body of water.

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george washingtonIn George Washington’s days, there were no cameras. One’s image was either sculpted or painted. Some paintings of George Washington showed him standing behind a desk with one arm behind his back while others showed both legs and both arms. Prices charged by painters were not based on how many people were to be painted, but by how many limbs were to be painted. Arms and legs are ‘limbs,’ therefore painting them would cost the buyer more. Hence the expression, ‘Okay, but it’ll cost you an arm and a leg.’ (Artists know hands and arms are more difficult to paint.)

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As incredible as it sounds, men and women took baths only twice a year (May and October). Women kept their hair covered, while men shaved their heads (because of lice and bugs) and wore wigs. Wealthy men could afford good wigs made from wool. They couldn’t wash the wigs, so to clean them they would carve out a loaf of bread, put the wig in the shell, and bake it for 30 minutes. The heat would make the wig big and fluffy, hence the term ‘big wig’. Today we often use the term ‘here comes the Big Wig’ because someone appears to be or is powerful and wealthy.

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In the late 1700’s, many houses consisted of a large room with only one chair. Commonly, a long wide board folded down from the wall, and was used for dining. The ‘head of the household’ always sat in the chair while everyone else ate sitting on the floor. Occasionally a guest, who was usually a man, would be invited to sit in this chair during a meal. To sit in the chair meant you were important and in charge. They called the one sitting in the chair the ‘chair man.’ Today in business, we use the expression or title ‘Chairman’ or ‘Chairman of the Board.’

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Personal hygiene left much room for improvement. As a result, many women and men had developed acne scars by adulthood. The women would spread bee’s wax over their facial skin to smooth out their complexions. When they were speaking to each other, if a woman began to stare at another woman’s face she was told, ‘mind your own bee’s wax.’ Should the woman smile, the wax would crack, hence the term ‘crack a smile’. In addition, when they sat too close to the fire, the wax would melt. Therefore, the expression ‘losing face.’

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Ladies wore corsets, which would lace up in the front. A proper and dignified woman, as in ‘straight laced’ wore a tightly tied lace.

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ace of spadesCommon entertainment included playing cards. However, there was a tax levied when purchasing playing cards but only applicable to the ‘Ace of Spades.’ To avoid paying the tax, people would purchase 51 cards instead. Yet, since most games require 52 cards, these people were thought to be stupid or dumb because they weren’t ‘playing with a full deck.’

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Early politicians required feedback from the public to determine what the people considered important. Since there were no telephones, TV’s or radios, the politicians sent their assistants to local taverns, pubs, and bars. They were told to ‘go sip some Ale and listen to people’s conversations and political concerns. Many assistants were dispatched at different times. ‘You go sip here’ and ‘You go sip there.’ The two words ‘go sip’ were eventually combined when referring to the local opinion and, thus we have the term ‘gossip.’

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At local taverns, pubs, and bars, people drank from pint and quart-sized containers. A bar maid’s job was to keep an eye on the customers and keep the drinks coming. She had to pay close attention and remember who was drinking in ‘pints’ and who was drinking in ‘quarts,’ hence the phrase ‘minding your ‘P’s and Q’s’.

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One more:
bet you didn’t know this!  In the heyday of sailing ships, all war ships and many freighters carried iron cannons. Those cannons fired round iron cannon balls. It was necessary to keep a good supply near the cannon. However, how to prevent them from rolling about the deck? The best storage method devised was a square-based pyramid with one ball on top, resting on four resting on nine, which rested on sixteen. Thus, a supply of 30 cannon balls could be stacked in a small area right next to the cannon.

cannon balls

There was only one problem….how to prevent the bottom layer from sliding or rolling from under the others. The solution was a metal plate called a ‘Monkey’ with 16 round indentations. However, if this plate were made of iron, the iron balls would quickly rust to it. The solution to the rusting problem was to make ‘Brass Monkeys.’ Few landlubbers realize that brass contracts much more and much faster than iron when chilled.. Consequently, when the temperature dropped too far, the brass indentations would shrink so much that the iron cannonballs would come right off the monkey; Thus, it was quite literally, ‘Cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey.’ (All this time, you thought that was an improper expression, didn’t you.)

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