Consensus is the absence of leadership.

Margaret Thatcher

By Dr. Jim Ferguson

A friend observed how gloomy the weather has been lately with overcast skies and “southern cold.” I know what she means. I no longer ski, but I remember riding lifts to 12,000 feet in the Rocky Mountains and schussing down snowy glades. And yet the cold was not as penetrating as it seems to be in Knoxville. The low humidity of western climes must be the reason. Our southern higher humidity transmits cold more readily to the bones. Brrr!

Years ago Becky and I came to a marital agreement. I am more cold-natured than she is, and I get cold in late October and often don’t warm up until April. Through negotiation, she agreed to allow our dual-controlled electric blanket to go on the bed between October and April. I don’t know how women can stand sandals or open toe shoes in the winter. My feet would be a block of ice without socks, and I doubt I’d survive winter nights without an electric blanket.

I thought about mountain winter snow as I watched World Economic Forum (WEF) elites traipse around Davos during their yearly pilgrimage to the Swiss Alps. These preening climate hypocrites arrived on more than a thousand private jets to hobnob while sipping wine and nibbling caviar canapés and then lecture the rest of us about global warming…er climate change. I object to John Kerry and Al Gore types who will never have to sit in the dark or be cold to “protect the environment.” And why were Democrat Senators Joe Manchin, Chris Coons and Kirsten Sinema in Davos? And who paid for their travel or admission tickets which cost tens of thousands of dollars?

I see little benefit from such a wasteful conference, although it does help the local economy. And reports say prostitutes who flock to Davos also do a booming business during the conference. Lastly, the Chinese who help fund Davos benefit because they are able to justify their increasing coal usage as “necessary” for their economic development.

But Klaus Schwab (founder of the WEF) and the Davos crowd aren’t the only self-serving reprobates. We have a dearth of scofflaws in Washington, D.C. The FBI is tainted and needs to be purged or reimagined. The CDC has become politicized and is no longer trusted. The Department of Justice has become an Orwellian oxymoron. The Department of Transportation can’t manage ships, planes or trains. And the Department of Homeland Security has surrendered our borders to narco traffickers and promoted invasion by a horde of over four million in the last two years plus nearly 300,000 “got-aways” in just the last four months.

However, the biggest scandal of our time is not Biden’s mishandling of classified documents; it is what’s in those documents. The FBI raided President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home, staged photographs of documents, which were under lock, of which Trump had the authority to declassify. We know nothing of the classified documents Biden put in the University of Pennsylvania think-tank, the ones in his garage, cabinet and the two other tranches of documents. There is substantial information from various sources, including Miranda Devine of the New York Post, Tucker Carlson of Fox News and radio’s Dan Bongino, questioning whether Hunter Biden was using the information in those documents to make deals with China and Ukrainian energy companies. I now wonder if the Ukrainian phone call which caused the impeachment hoax was orchestrated to block Trump from inquiring about the Biden family’s dealings.

I don’t know the truth, but a coverup of a political burglary at the Washington Watergate complex brought down President Richard Nixon. And the allegations of the Biden family’s business dealings are far more serious. Given the institutional deception and lies of Washington DC, I’m not optimistic that we’ll ever learn the truth. However, there is a good argument that Biden’s plan to run for reelection in 2024 has become a problem for Democrats. Are we watching another soft coup d’etat analogous to the one that brought down President Trump? One wonders if we have become Venezuela.

I’ve just finished reading two thought provoking books which I regard as sublime. The first is Henry Kissenger’s “Leadership” chronicling Konrad Adenauer, Charles de Gaulle, Richard Nixon, Anwar Sadat, Lee Kuan Yew and Margaret Thatcher . It is a remarkable book written about influential leaders of our time, by a ninety-nine-year-old scholar whose grasp of history and leadership is compelling and whose prose far exceeds my own. However, this is not a “beach book.” It is a serious work that will be discussed long after Dr. Kissinger and I have “shuffled off this mortal coil.”

The second book is “Irresistible” by Andy Stanley. This Christian apologetic is very readable and has been impactful to me. Stanley presents two important concepts. The first is that Jesus ushered in the New Covenant and therefore his followers are not bound by Old Testament regulations. Nonetheless, Jesus said he came to fulfill scripture, not abolish it (Matthew 5:17).

Stanley then offers the metaphor of vertical and horizontal axes to describe our relationship with God (vertical) and with each other (horizontal). Although I seek God’s guidance and wisdom, and pray for strength and courage, I reside in this world. Consequently, I am to do justice, have mercy (Micah 6:8) and love my neighbor as myself (Mark 12:31). It’s difficult at times because some of my “neighbors” are confused, and others are just scofflaws and would benefit from some tough love in the woodshed with this feisty Doctor.

A month ago I wrote an essay entitled “Twilight Zone.” Twilight can be “a period of decline” or refer to the time after sunset. However, the diffusion of light before dawn is also a twilight zone. Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33) and we certainly have trouble. However, I pray that we are at a turning point. Hopefully the truth will come out, justice will be done and we will experience the dawn of a new America.