Thomas Edison

American inventor Thomas Edison was an amazing man. He held over 1,500 patents, including those for the phonograph, kinetoscope, dictaphone, radio, light bulb, autographic printer, and tattoo gun. He produced the first film version of Frankenstein. It was a 15-minute silent “movie.” We owe a lot to old Tom.

Where would we be today without the kinetoscope? And I don’t know about you, but our family couldn’t survive without our tattoo gun. Our church still relies on our autographic printer to run off Sunday’s worship guides. But Mr. Edison did something else of interest. He did it by simply dying.

Henry Ford was enamored with Edison, so when the great inventor died, Ford captured his last breath in a bottle. Why would he do that? Ford never said. That question will always be pondered along with the other great questions of history, such as who shot Kennedy, who shot J.R., and who watched Jersey Shore.

But one thing is clear. When Edison died, Ford was ready. What is not so clear is whether or not Edison was ready. How about you? Are you ready for that moment when you take your last breath?

Titanic

Robert Ballard was a man on a quest. He wanted to find the Titanic. And on September 1, 1985, he discovered the sunken ship in the North Atlantic, more than 350 miles off the coast of Newfoundland.

I got chills when I read his account for the first time. He sent down that bright probe light and saw that sight more than two miles below the surface of those icy waters. “My first direct view of Titanic lasted less than two minutes, but the stark sight of her immense black hull towering above the ocean floor will remain forever ingrained in my memory. My lifelong dream was to find this great ship and during the past 13 years the quest for her has dominated my life.”

What quest is dominating your life today? What do you dream about when you are laying in bed late at night? What would you do if you could do anything? What is the carrot that keeps you going?

God created us with passion. Ask him to give you a passion worth committing your life to.

The Rushmore Report: Predicting the Presidential Election – 2028

With just 5,389 days to go until the 2028 presidential election, it’s time to finalize our projections for the White House – 12 years out. With Democratic President Castro having served two terms, the race will be up for grabs. The primary issues for debate will include Medicare, race relations, education, immigration, inner city renovation, and taxes. I will tell the story as it will appear the day after the election. And the 2028 president will be . . .

Democratic Nomination

With an open seat for the first time in eight years a number of prominent Democrats jumped into the race. Early leaders were Vice President Kirsten Gillibrand, age 62, who sought to become America’s first woman president. She faced the stiff opposition of liberal darling Cory Booker, age 59. Booker is a four-term senator from New Jersey. Lesser known candidates included Kasim Reed, former mayor of Atlanta, and Gavin Newsom of California. Rumored to make one final run for the White House, Hillary Clinton, age 82, bowed out, but did not rule out a run in 2032. Bernie Sanders, age 137, failing to secure the VP nomination, unexpectedly announced his retirement from politics.

Democratic Winner – Vice President Kirsten Gillibrand

Republican Nomination

Running for the Republican nomination, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky was the early favorite. At age 65, he emerged as the conscience of the libertarian/conservative wing of the party. Other candidates included Adam Kinzinger, age 50. As the sitting Republican Governor of Illinois, the military veteran put Illinois in play, while promising to return America to the military greatness that eroded under the Castro Administration. Kinzinger enjoyed the endorsement of Senator John McCain, age 104, of Arizona. Other candidates included 2024 nominee Marco Rubio of Florida, Governor Brandon Creighton of Texas, Florida Rep. Tim Tebow, and Rep. Byron Trump, son of the former president, of New York. At age 22, Trump would have been the youngest president in U.S. history.

Republican Winner – Governor Adam Kinzinger

Presidential Winner

On November 7, 2028, Adam Kinzinger of Illinois narrowly defeated Democratic nominee Kirsten Gillibrand, in an election reminiscent of the Trump win over Clinton in 2016, as Gillibrand won the popular vote, 51-48 percent. Carrying Illinois, Kinzinger narrowly won the Electoral College, 271-269. President-elect Kinzinger will be inaugurated the 47th President of the United States on January 20, 2029.

The Rushmore Report: What You Didn’t Know About Donald Trump

We all know he is the President of the United States. We know he is a brash billionaire. We know him as the star of The Apprentice and as the Tweeter-in-Chief. We know about his multiple marriages, bombastic ways, and unprecedented rise to the Oval Office. But there is more to The Donald than you know. Here are a few things about the 45th president you probably didn’t know.

1. Trump has never smoked, drank alcohol, or done drugs.

His older brother, Fred, was an active alcoholic for many years, and he warned Trump to avoid drinking. Fred ultimately died from his addiction. This left an impression on Donald that would never go away.

2. His hairstyle does not come easily.

When Trump awakes in the morning, he looks different. His remarkable hairline is achieved after blow-drying his hair forward and them combing it backward.

3. He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

In 2007, Trump became the 2,327th star to receive the honor, because of his role as producer of NBC’s The Apprentice.

4. Trump is the only president with his own board game.

The monopoly-like game launched in 1989 and was ultimately discontinued after poor sales and bad reviews. The game was appropriately named Trump: The Game.

5. He once had his own brand of Vodka.

Though he doesn’t drink, he launched his Vodka in 2006, describing it as “a superb product and beautifully packaged.” The public didn’t agree. It was discontinued in 2011.

6. He doesn’t like to shake hands.

A germaphobe, when forced to shake hands, he has an interesting technique of vigorously pulling the other person close into his body.

7. Trump once owned a pro football team.

A player in high school, his love for football never left him. In 1983, he purchased the New Jersey Generals of the United States Football League, which he tried to merge with the NFL. The USFL folded after two seasons.

8. He has a high opinion of himself.

Okay, you already knew this one. But here’s the evidence. In 2004, he was quoted in The Daily News, saying, “All of the women on The Apprentice flirt with me – consciously or subconsciously. That’s to be expected.”

The Rushmore Report: Do You Believe the JFK Killing Was a Conspiracy? Then Answer Nine Questions

I admit it. I’m a JFK assassination junkee. I watch all the shows and read all the books. In the 53 years since Kennedy was gunned down that fateful day, over 1,000 books have been written and hundreds of documentaries have been produced. According to a recent Gallup Poll, only 30 percent believe Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone shooter. Count me among the minority. If you believe it was a conspiracy, answer these questions . . .

1. How have so many remained so quiet for so long?

If you believe the JFK assassination was a conspiracy, who was behind it? The FBI? The CIA? The mafia? Russia? Cuba? Lyndon Johnson? Donald Trump? A multiple of the above? How ever you answer that question – many contend it was a combination of the above – you must admit a conspiracy of this magnitude had to involve a LOT of people. Most conspiracists point to unusual behavior by the Secret Service, Dallas police, coroner, and medical examiner. Kennedy’s body was manipulated, the doctors lied, the caskets were switched. Here’s the point. Any conspiracy requires that dozens of individuals be in on it. And if you are among the 70 percent, you must believe that every one of them has kept quiet for 53 years. Not one of them has told the true story to the media, their neighbor, their family, or their priest. No death bed confessions. No slip of the tongue. Not a single verifiable example of even one of the people who was “in on it” telling their story.

2. Who would have used a nut job like Oswald as a part of a bigger plan?

No one was more unstable than Lee Harvey Oswald. But almost no one disputes he was a shooter, if not the shooter. It was his gun at the scene. It was his prints on the window. It was his place of work. He was seen in the Texas Book Depository Building that day – by multiple employees. So we know he was there. We know he fired shots. And then he was dumb enough to leave the evidence behind. And this is the kind of hired assassin the CIA, FBI, and mafia would hire? Was Maxwell Smart not available?

3. Why did they let Oswald wander the streets of Dallas after the shooting when they could have easily taken him away?

Pretty much all conspiracy theories go like this – Oswald said it himself. “I’m a patsy.” (By the way, some murderers have been known to lie – i.e. O.J.) So Oswald was set up, the theory goes. And as evidence, they point out that Jack Ruby killed Oswald before he could talk. This is the most silly of all explanations that have somehow endured through the years. I will try to explain without laughing. The story goes like this. Oswald was the fall guy. He was set up. So in their effort to keep him quiet, rather than pick him up outside the Depository Building right after the shooting and usher him to South America – or an untimely death – they let him wander the streets of Dallas until he was picked up by police, interrogated for two days – and then they had him killed. Now, I’m no FBI agent, but if it was me, I’m pretty sure I would not have given Oswald two days to blab before taking him out. Remember, he said he was a “patsy.” So, if he had been set up, would the people doing the setting up really have gambled that he wouldn’t say anything until Mr. Ruby could show up literally 60 seconds before Oswald walked out of the police holding area two days later, and then shoot him? Who were the geniuses behind the Crime of the Century who decided, “Let’s let Oswald wander the streets of Dallas, get picked up by police, and take two days to identify us, before we take him out”?

4. If there was a second bullet, rather than the “magic bullet,” where is it?

All conspiracy theorists say the same thing. One bullet hit Kennedy and another hit Connally at essentially the same time. This debunks the “magic bullet” theory, whereby they claim one Oswald bullet could not have hit both men, based on the flight of the bullet from Kennedy to Connally. Here’s the problem. One bullet was found – the one that eventually struck Gov. Connally. If there was a second bullet that hit Kennedy alone, where did it end up? No other bullet hit the car, inside or out. For the bullet that struck Kennedy’s back/throat to exit and miss the car would have required a “magic bullet” of historic proportions.

5. Why did 14 experts agree there was no one at the grassy knoll?

Nearly all who claim there was a second shooter contend he was behind the grassy knoll, to the right of the presidential motorcade. Here’s the problem. Photographs taken at the exact time of the shooting, from across the street, clearly show the entire grassy knoll area. And of the 14 experts who analyzed these pictures, not one of them saw any visual evidence of a shooter.

6. Why did Kennedy’s head snap forward before it snapped backward?

Critics of the Warren Report are quick to point out that the Zapruder film shows Kennedy’s head snapping backward, not forward, in response to the fatal head shot. Therefore, they say, the shot must have come from the right front. But slide #313 clearly shows Kennedy’s head snapping forward by over two inches before it snapped back.

7. If Kennedy was shot from the grassy knoll, why was the left side of his head intact?

Any bullet from the grassy knoll would have left a gaping hole on the back left side of the president’s head. Yet, not a single piece of evidence confirms such an injury. To the contrary, all photos debunk this idea.

8. Since the parade route was not determined until November 18, when did they recruit Oswald?

Surely, the assassination plan was hatched more than four days in advance. So did they wait until the route was announced to find assassins who had access to buildings along the route? Of did “they” plan the route themselves? Either seems rather unlikely.

9. Who manipulated the weather?

If the front that passed through North Texas that day had come through three hours later, it would have still been raining that fateful afternoon. And the bullet-proof top would have been up on the presidential limousine. And Kennedy would not have been shot. If you believe in a conspiracy, you have to believe they were willing to risk it all, to include dozens who could turn them in, all on the hope of a sunny Dallas day.

Could it have been a conspiracy involving multiple shooters, as most believe? Sure. But to believe this, you have to accept the “fact” that the great minds behind the assassination chose to include a most unreliable character (Oswald), were able to keep everyone quiet (for 53 years), and chose to let Oswald wander the streets of Dallas after the shooting (when they could have easily taken him out). You have to believe the first bullet that struck Kennedy disappeared into thin air, the grassy knoll shooter was invisible, the kill shot didn’t exit his head, and that Oswald was recruited in four days. Further, you have to believe the mafia (or CIA, FBI, Russia, Cuba, or Donald Trump) had control over the weather.

There is another option. One crazed gunman by the name of Lee Harvey Oswald, who retrieved his gun from the home of Ruth Payne the day before, who told his wife he would do “something big that day,” who we know was there that day, and whose gun was the only weapon at the scene and the only weapon seen in any photograph or by any witness – acted alone.

The Rushmore Report: Will President Trump Be Impeached?

In the wake of new revelations of memos written by former FBI Director James Comey, Democrats such as Sen. Angus King (ME), Rep. Al Green (TX), and Rep. Maxine Waters (CA) have called for the impeachment of President Trump. David Gergen (CNN) said, “We’re already in impeachment territory.” British oddsmakers give Trump only a 46 percent chance of finishing his first term. But can impeachment really happen? Let’s talk about it.

Only two presidents have ever been impeached. And no, Richard Nixon was not one of them. I’m talking about Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton. And neither was removed from office. That’s because impeachment and removal from office are a high bar to get over.

The Constitution is very specific about the basis for impeachment. Article II Section 4 states, “The President, Vice President, and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment from, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.” And the definition of “high crimes and misdemeanors” is not made clear.

But can President Trump actually be impeached and removed from office?

Yes.

Is it likely?

No.

There are five reasons a Trump impeachment is very unlikely.

1. President Trump has not even been accused of a crime.

Despite their best efforts, neither Democrats nor the media have produced a single scintilla of evidence of a crime – either in the Russian collusion or the Comey memo “scandal.” And where there is no evidence, there is no crime. And where there is no crime, there is no impeachment.

2. Impeaching Trump would be dumb politically.

If the Democrats were successful in actually removing Trump from office, they’d have a President Pence. And that would be their worst nightmare. Mike Pence is more conservative than Trump, and far less prone to the kind of unforced errors that make a second Trump term so precarious. Democrats will be in a much better position to win elections in 2018, 2020, and after by running against the volatile Trump than the steady Pence.

3. As with Bill Clinton, impeaching Trump would make him more powerful, not less.

When Clinton was impeached, he was at his lowest point in popularity. But being impeached was viewed as an overreach, resulting in a wide swing in public opinion. Clinton was empowered and suddenly had the country behind him as never before.

4. The math makes impeachment nearly impossible for Democrats.

Democrats would need the support of 25 House Republicans to approve articles of impeachment and then 15 Senate Republicans to remove Trump from office. There’s a reason no president has ever been removed from office. It is a really high bar to get over, and with Republicans in control of both chambers of Congress – nearly impossible.

5. The two big issues appear bogus.

Issue #1 – Trump’s meeting with Russian President Putin. The accusation is that Trump shared classified information with Putin. Here’s the problem – As President, Mr. Trump is completely within his rights to declassify anything at anytime. So even if he did what he is accused of doing, it is perfectly legal.

Issue #2 – the Comey memos. The implication is that Mr. Comey jotted down some comments Trump made to him at a White House dinner on February 14. Trump supposedly suggested Comey go easy on Michael Flynn. Rep. Elijah Cummings, as well as other Democrats, called this a “textbook case of obstruction of justice.” Here’s the problem – Anything short of a direct order would not rise to the level of obstruction, and therefore a crime. And if Trump actually had given Mr. Comey such a clear directive, by not telling the Justice Department – immediately – Comey effectively downplayed the severity of the comments. No one would have recognized obstruction as well as the Director of the FBI, and he did nothing to report the Trump comments as inappropriate.

So yes, it is possible that Mr. Trump could be impeached. It’s also possible my Houston Texans will win the next Super Bowl and the Houston Astros will win the World Series and the Houston Rockets will win next year’s NBA championship. It’s possible – but highly unlikely.

The Rushmore Report: The Great Hypocrisy – Dems Who Wanted Comey Fired

Months before President Donald Trump fired James Comey, Democrats had called for the dismissal of the FBI Director themselves. Now they are calling the firing they supported “Nixonian,” in the face of the Russia investigation. It’s as though they think the current FBI investigation will suddenly stop with Comey’s firing. But Trump didn’t fire the FBI – just the Director. Still, Democrats are raising the mantle of hypocrisy to an unprecedented level.

Trump and the White House insisted on Wednesday that Comey’s firing was not politically motivated and, instead, was an effort to restore public trust and confidence in the FBI. Yet the timing and the motive of Comey’s dismissal puzzled many Democrats and Republicans alike.

Democrats are expressing concern that the effect of the Comey firing will be to shut down the investigation in which he had no personal involvement. To a man, FBI leaders have asserted this will have zero effect on their work. Still, Democrats decry the timing of the firing, as if they would have supported Mr. Trump had he taken this action the day after his inauguration, one month into his Administration, or at any other time.

Newt Gingrich was right when he observed, “If President Trump said the American flag was red, white, and blue, the Democrats would say it is fuchsia.”

What makes the Democratic hysteria hysterical is that so many of them had personally called for the firing of Mr. Comey. Never did any of them say the timing mattered. In fact, they have been beating the “Fire Comey” drumbeat for months. Only when Trump did what they supported did they no longer support their own idea.

Here’s a brief timeline.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (October 30, 2016) – He accused the FBI Director of breaking the Hatch Act, a federal law, by publicly disclosing new information about the Hillary Clinton investigation 11 days ahead of a presidential election. He called on the Director’s removal with a personal letter in which he wrote, “Through your partisan actions, you may have broken the law.”

Rep. Steve Cohen of Tennessee (October 31, 2016) – “I have no confidence in him.” He then called on Comey to resign his FBI post.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (November 2, 2016) – “I do not have confidence in him any longer,” he told Bloomberg News.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi, House Minority Leader (November 2, 2016) – “He’s not right for the job,” she told CNN.

Rep. Maxine Waters (January 13, 2017) – “The FBI Director has no credibility.”

Rep. G.K. Butterfield (January 24, 2017) – “James Comey needs to fade away into oblivion.”

Add the opinion of the New York Daily News Editorial Board – “Comey must resign.” And Newsweek columnist Kurt Eichenwald went even further. “James Comey should not simply be fired as Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He must be barred forever from any form of public service.”

In the week since the Comey firing, not one of the above eight critics have supported the very move they personally called for. What it is – hypocrisy of the highest order. What it is not – surprising.

About the Author

Luis Gomez is a writer for the San Diego Union-Tribune.

The Rushmore Report: Does Late Night TV Really Treat Trump Differently than Other Presidents?

This past week, Bill Maher and Stephen Colbert have said things about President Trump that would have gotten any late night “comedian” fired had they said the same things about President Obama. Of that there is no dispute. But overall, are things really that much different than in recent years? Does late night TV really offer unbalanced attacks against Mr. Trump, compared to Obama, for example? The data is in and the answer is clear.

Yes.

Over Trump’s first 100 days in office, late night jokes targeted Trump 1,060 times, according to a study by George Mason University’s Center for Media and Public Affairs. Those 1,060 punchlines tower over the numbers hit during the entire first year of recent presidents. For example, Mr. Obama was targeted 936 times in his first year. Trump is on pace for 3,557 attacks during his first year, or 3.8 times more than Obama.

Perhaps the reason is that Trump invites such criticisms/jokes. Not so fast. What could have possibly provided more fodder for late-night comedians than the Bill Clinton affair with Monica Lewinsky? Yet, Clinton’s 1,717 jokes in 1998 were less than half of what Trump is facing in 2017.

So far this year, Trump-targeted jabs have outpaced jokes told about all Democrats, 1,060-95. That’s a ratio of 11/1.

But many will contend Mr. Trump says things that invite such cynicism and ridicule. Again, not so fast. Trump’s family members have been targeted 97 times, more than all Democrats combined. Let me say that again. Late night television is going after the President’s wife, daughter, and ten-year-old son at a higher frequency than their combined attacks on the 241 elected Democrats who populate the Senate and House of Representatives.

The George Mason University report concludes that Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, and Jimmy Kimmel have ridiculed the President’s immediate family more than they have attacked Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi (“You must pass the Democratic bill before you can read it”) and Chuck Schumer (“We will oppose this president at every turn”).

Can you imagine the outcry if the media had attacked Chelsea Clinton or Barack Obama’s wife or children this way?

I remember a time when the President’s family was off-limits. I remember a time when late-night comedians would have been fired for making “jokes” about incest within the President’s family and bleeped-out “jokes” about his manhood. I remember a time when such despicable, immoral speech would earn universal condemnation among an unbiased mainstream media. I even remember a time when we had an unbiased mainstream media.

I really feel old.

The Rushmore Report: What Trump Can Do that Will Only Make the Media/Democrats Hate Him More

Everyone wants to be liked. That is a universal plague that has ruined many a good person. Presidents are no different. And clearly President Trump falls into that category. He wants to be liked. Is he bothered by his low favorability ratings? You bet he is. Does it bother him that he is loathed by Democrats and mainstream media no matter what he does? Of course it does. But it is partly his own fault. In his young presidency, he has already done some things that clearly have won him the ire of the opposition. Here are a few examples.

1. Lower unemployment

Under the Trump presidency, unemployment has dropped to 4.7 percent, lower than at any time under the eight years of the Obama Administration. Unemployment hasn’t been this low since – gasp! – George W. Bush was President.

2. Record stock market

Just as employment is lower than at any time during Obama’s eight years, the stock market is higher than at any point in Obama’s eight years. That means more retirement savings for everybody.

3. Lower illegal immigration

Since Trump became President, illegal border crossings are down 70 percent. That means less crime and more jobs for Americans.

4. Standing up to Syria and North Korea

Syria has crossed Obama’s “red line” more times than the chicken crossed the road. But President Trump bombed Syria when they crossed him. And he is staring down North Korea as well, actually awakening China from its slumber. It’s called peace through strength.

5. Showing up to Day of Prayer rather than the Correspondents’ Dinner

This is a big no-no. In a span of one week, President Trump put God ahead of the media. He could have attended the venue that takes God’s name in vain, but chose the venue that prays in God’s name instead.

6. Fixing Obamacare

He could have shouted, “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep your healthcare plan.” And he could have let the current program, clearly imploding, implode. But instead, Trump is supporting efforts to provide lower premiums and reduce healthcare costs.

7. Military pay raise

For the first time in six years, the military personnel are getting a raise. They protect us every day – perhaps they deserve a small pay increase every six years.

Predictably, these seven steps have brought the wrath (and vulgarity) of both media and Democrats alike. And why not? Low unemployment. More people working. Record savings. Stronger defense. Reduced illegal immigration. Day of Prayer. No wonder the left is in a dither.

But I will offer hope to the President. It’s not too late to win over your opposition, Mr. Trump. Here are a few random suggestions, sure to help.

1. Admit you are never right about anything.

2. Let Chuck Schumer make your next Supreme Court nomination for you.

3. Increase taxes.

4. Accumulate as much national debt as Mr. Obama did.

5. Make empty threats against countries who seek to annihilate Israel.

6. Replace Mike Pence with Nancy Pelosi.

I thought of one other thing you might try to win the approval of your most strident critics. You could walk on water. But if you do, know this. The opposition will say you don’t know how to swim.

 

The Rushmore Report: Kim Kardashian – ‘I Would Have Gone to Heaven’

Kim Kardashian says she’s certain she would have gone to heaven if she had been killed during the high profile robbery that left her shaken in Paris last October. In her first interview in six months, on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Kardashian recounted the horrific experience of being bound and gagged while her jewelry was stolen at gunpoint. In the interview, Kardashian opened up about her prayer life and readiness to meet God.

The 36-year-old entertainer and television personality shed tears on the show as she recalled praying for the lives of her rap mogul husband, Kanye West, and their two children as she sorted through thoughts of her life coming to a sudden end.

“Automatically, your stomach drops, it’s a feeling you just can’t describe,” she said, visibly emotional while remembering the ordeal. “I said a prayer. I said, ‘I know I’m going to heaven. I hope my kids and my husband are okay.'”

The ordeal has changed Kardashian, who admitted that she was materialistic before millions of dollars in jewelry were stolen from her. For two years, the men who robbed her were following her on social media where she often flaunted her jewelry and possessions.

Now, she insists, she’s a better person and mother who has a different outlook on life.

“I was definitely materialistic before, not that there’s anything bad with having things and working hard to get those things, and I’m really proud of everyone around me that’s successful,” she said. “But I’m so happy that my kids get this me and that this is who I’m raising my kids to be. I don’t care to show off the way I used to.”

While Kardashian has admitted to showing off her possessions, she has also showcased her faith in the past. Before marrying her rapper husband, she was pictured attending services at Life Change Community Church in Agoura Hills, California, and previously spoke about starting her own Bible study.

“On my way to church with the girls,” she tweeted before attending a service on New Year’s Day in January 2012. “I want to start a Bible study group with my friends.”

About the Author

Christine Thomasos is a frequent writer for The Christian Post.