Why Doesn’t Warren Buffet Pay Extra Taxes?

Monday, May 16, AD 2011

This WSJ editorial caught my eye, because it makes a seemingly valid point about wealthy people who call for higher taxes on the rich.

I wish I had a dollar for every time a wealthy liberal has declared he thinks he should pay more taxes. That list includes Warren Buffett, George Soros, Bill Gates Sr., Mark Zuckerberg and even Barack Obama, who now says that not only should rich people like him pay more taxes, they want to pay more. “I believe that most wealthy Americans would agree with me,” he said of his tax-hike plan. “They want to give back to the country that’s done so much for them.”

So why don’t they? There is a special fund at the Treasury Department for taxpayers who want to make “gift contributions to reduce debt held by the public.” But very few do. Last year that fund and others like it raised a grand total of $300 million. That’s a decimal place on Mr. Zuckerberg’s net worth and pays for less than two hours worth of federal borrowing.

I understand the basic satisfaction of saying, “Look, mister, if you really want to pay more taxes, no one is stopping you,” but I don’t think that it’s actually a very good argument. The reason why people like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet advocate for higher taxes but don’t voluntarily pay higher taxes than the law requires is pretty obvious:

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21 Responses to Why Doesn’t Warren Buffet Pay Extra Taxes?

  • As Walter Williams and others have noted, higher tax rates on the rich, even rates of 100%, will not eliminate annual budget deficits and do nothing to address the cumulative national debt. Reduced spending is the only feasible mechanism for addressing the national debt.

  • Total commie lib Dem idiot BS………….

    Is this the type of educational thought comming from Catholic schools?

    No wonder the brain washed Catholics tend to vote Democrat.

  • Miller,

    Agreed. Federal spending is currently above the norm in relation to GDP (a little of this is due to GDP shrinkage during the recession, but not all of it) and the US has no history of collecting vastly higher percentages of GDP in tax revenues, so spending has to go down. (Some European countries succeed in getting much more of the GDP in taxes, but they do this by taxing the heck out of the middle class as well as the rich, and we in the US middle class won’t put up with that.)

    My point here is pretty modest: That it’s not really shocking that Warren Buffet doesn’t voluntarily pay higher taxes even though he advocates that everyone have to pay higher taxes, so long as one makes the reasonable and obvious assumption that he’s basically a self interested party who doesn’t want to reduce his standing in society. Or in short, he’s selfish.

    The mistake that liberals make is in thinking that there’s anything selfless about Buffet’s high tax advocacy.

  • “Buffet is clearly willing to give money away, but when he makes a direct donation to a non-profit he has a pretty good say in how that money will be used. If he simply writes a check to the Feds, he has very little.”
    So Warren Buffet wants to direct his charitable gifts to organizations that will use the money as he wants it to be used but feels others should be taxed so that their monies will be used as the government decides and dictates.
    The Obama administration is considering reducing or eliminating deductions for charitable donations which will make his ‘what is good for me but not for thee’ reasoning obsolete.
    As a taxpayer and one who contributes to many charitable organization, both religious and secular, I want to control how my contributions are spent,just as mr. Buffett and not how and to whom the government supports which support or fund practice which I oppose on moral, ethical or religious grounds.

  • “They are, clearly, willing to pay more (thus the advocacy) but only if they can do so in a way which doesn’t reduce their standing versus other rich people (and the rest of the country).”

    Actually, they want to reduce their standing compared to the less wealthy but not compared to the equally wealthy. They’re worried about income inequality. Or so I’ve been told.

    I hate it when Warren Buffet says he’s taxed at a lower rate than his secretary. Bershire pays taxes on his income but not on his secretary’s.

  • Consider this instead of a gift contribution: a bonfire. Burn a million, cold hard cash.
    What gives a product, any product, value: supply. Reduce supply, value goes up. Burn up a million, take a million out of circulation, and its worth goes up.

  • RR,

    Actually, they want to reduce their standing compared to the less wealthy but not compared to the equally wealthy.

    I guess sort of yes, sort of no. There are a couple million people in the top income bracket, and Buffet sits at the very top of that stack. If he gave more in taxes voluntarily, he’d effectively cede that place a bit, and since he doesn’t do that one assumes that he wants all of those couple million people (who virtually all make much less than he does) to take the same relative hit in high taxes that he does. But it’s true that compared to the other 98% of us, he’d be less unequal than before.

    I hate it when Warren Buffet says he’s taxed at a lower rate than his secretary. Bershire pays taxes on his income but not on his secretary’s.

    Yeah, no kidding. I’m but a lowly amateur econ wonk, but it’s downright disgraceful for someone of his stature to be going around acting as if he didn’t know that capital gains rates are lower than income rates on the theory that corporate profits are already taxed. You’d think someone like Buffet would be in a good position to advocate abolishing the corporate tax and setting capital gains to the same rate as income taxes, but no…

  • Buffet and Gates of course merely gain cheap good publicity by these statements. They have set up their vast fortunes skillfully enough, using the most able attorneys and accountants that money can buy, that any tax increase on them would be de minimis. As partisan Democrats, Buffet and Gates can make these type of statements all the time realizing that the taxes would hit people other than themselves. If they were doing this out of simple patriotism I think they would write out huge voluntary checks to the Treasury, but the last thing they want is for the US government to get more of their money, as opposed to more of the money of other people.

  • I think the point here: Buffett and Gates are talking about the government taking more of other people’s money.

    Up in the Bronx, they would say, “Talk is cheap.”

  • FWIW, I find it very hard to imagine that Buffet imagines a tax increase on the rich could be crafted that truly only taxed “other people” and not him. So I suspect he would expect to pay more taxes in the scenario he’s advocating. He’s just unwilling to do it unless everyone else in his class takes the same hit.

  • “FWIW, I find it very hard to imagine that Buffet imagines a tax increase on the rich could be crafted that truly only taxed “other people” and not him.”

    I do not. The tax code is one of the more byzantine productions in the perverted annals of the ingenuity of the tax man, and an individual with Buffett’s vast holdings can find plenty of legal ways to reduce his income to avoid paying taxes. His estate planning certainly indicates that he does not intend for the Feds to get much from his estate in regard to estate tax even though he is supposedly a big fan of the estate tax. When it comes to his theoretical love of taxes, Buffett is a fraud.

  • so spending has to go down.

    I think expenditures on the military & foreign relations, the federal police and courts and regulatory inspectorate, unemployment compensation, and benefits to the elderly currently exceed 15% of domestic product. If we are optimistic, the ratio of federal debt held by the public to domestic product will reach a plateau at about 0.9, meaning we are looking at service charges in the range of 4-5% of domestic product when interest rates return to historically normal levels (provided we retain our AAA credit rating). Military expenditure &c. has external drivers, fewer police means more disorder, unemployment compensation has external drivers, and reduction in benefits to the elderly is properly undertaken on a slow cohort-by-cohort basis. If you welsh on servicing the federal debt, country go blooey.

    So, you have miscellanous federal services (currently about 1.5% of domestic product) and grants to state and local government (currently about 4% of domestic product if you factor out the portion of nursing home charges ultimately satisfied by federal expenditure) to play around with freely. Have a nice day.

  • Art,

    Unless I’m much mistaken, however, federal spending is only a couple percent of GDP above it’s norm, while taxes are running a percent or two below their norm. There’s not a need for some massive change here. Cutting federal spending by around 2% of GDP in the long term (if it’s actually done) would pretty much re-stabilize the budget, although it wouldn’t pay down the debt with any great speed.

    The issue is, of course, that as you point out it’s not like there’s huge amounts of spending that can be cut without anyone noticing, and far too many voters currently support not cutting any real spending, while also not increasing taxes. (Whether they also support the tooth fairy and the Easter Bunny remains unclear.)

  • Most voters really are not opposed to tax increases as long as they are increases on someone else, especially the “rich” which is what we now call high income earners — “high” being more than what they expect to earn anytime soon.

    Buffett could easily pay more taxes if he just paid himself a market salary which would be taxed at ordinary rates.

  • Since there is no law that allows the feds to collect an income tax and all ‘tax payers’ are engaging in ‘voluntary compliance’ under threat of property confiscation and imprisonment your argument holds no water. Buffet is free to ‘volunteer’ more to the Treasury if he likes. He won’t. Buffet and other uber-wealthy libtards like him are totally aware that the federal government operates by debt alone. It is debt acquired through the usurious alchemy of the Federal Reserve scheme that funds government. Our taxes merely service the debt and are also used as wealth transfers to other nations, often our enemies.

    The income tax scheme is designed to ensure that other ‘wealthy’ Americans can never acquire enough wealth to rival the uber-wealthy like Gates and Buffet. The income tax scheme is nothing more than social engineering and granting of monopoly privileges to the uber-wealthy, who tend to be America-hating progressives and Marxists. Like all Communists, they expect to live in ultra-luxury and command all the political and economic power while the rest of us proles live in controlled squalor. Of course, they don’t want us revolting, so we need to be medicated and entertained, so we will be happy with our servitude. Notice also that both Gates and Buffet and the rest of their ilk are always in favor of tax-subsidized ‘charitable’ giving to ‘population control’ tax-free NGOs and foundations. The whole thing is sick and frankly a discussion about why or why not they will volunteer more in taxes or not is a distraction from the fact that the actions of these men and men like them are sheer evil.

  • Whoa. I didn’t realize the shark looked so small as you sail by up here…

  • I’ll get your shark!

  • Now the shark, Gates and Buffett are playing Monopoly! (Or is that Class Struggle? I can’t quite make out the game board.) 🙂

  • I believe it is the tax code edition of Twister.

  • I prefer to play Marxopoly. It is a neat little game. I am the banker, no one else can be the banker. I print as much money as I want and I let some of the other players have some, of course, they owe me. I sit back and let them buy property, collect rent, etc. They have to make interest payments to me on the money I loaned them. I am always wealthier than all of them combined and every so often I will bankrupt one of them and take their property by crashing the market, of course I only take the choicest properties and I bail out some of the others so that they are even more indebted to me.

    They think they are engaged in a free market game and I just sit back and control everything through debt. if any of them catch on, I have the others wage war on the recalcitrant. Of course, they have to borrow more from me to wage the war and I make sure it lasts for a long time by funding both sides.

    We should play sometime. I always get to be the shark. 😉

  • I like the American Knight’s Marxopoly. I wonder if the lay staff at the USCCB (the ones with Obama stickers on their cars in the USCCB parking lot in Washington, DC) and the liberal Catholics who vote Democrat (do they ever in their partisanship vote for anything else?) realize that that’s the game they are playing. Probably not. Sheep can sometimes be so blind.

29 Responses to Tin Foil Hat Comments

  • Boy, talk about conspiracy theories…this guy covers about 7 in one comment.

  • I’m amazed that there weren’t digital froth specks on the posting..

  • I actually feel sorry for the people who leave comments like that. It’s sad.

  • That comment is sedevacantist, yet borrows a style from the Lorraine Boetner fan club. Unbelievable.

  • The most useful function of this blog is helping to determine what is legitimate and illegitimate conservative opinion and theories.

  • *quibble* Unjustified paranoia, and unusual historical illiteracy.

    Possibly justified paranoia and widely believed things that didn’t happen that way get responded to, as is most effective. ^.^

  • I know that bad grammar and disorganized thought are not unique to “tin foilers”, but even so, once you see the capital D’s in “dumbed down”, you can guess that it’s going to be a bumpy ride.

  • As a very humble Catholic blessed by the missionaries of Our Lady of LaSalette, and thus by Our Lady Herself, I do know something of the appearance of Our Lady, and Her words then can be summed up in something she said 2,000 years ago when She indicated Jesus and said “Do whatever He tells you.”

    And beyond that, I can spell “LaSalette” correctly. So there. And as Bertie Wooster might have said, “I meant for that ‘so there’ to sting.”

  • Mack,
    Well, tinkerty tonk.

    Mandy P,
    I agree with you. It’s sad. These people are in thrall to the father of lies in some way.

  • So… which would you rather receive? This version of paranoia or the “It’s okay, Jesus wouldn’t mind cause he’s so nice and all inclusive” version?

  • Neither actually. The Jesus of the Gospels as taught by the Church for 2000 years is sufficient.

  • Oh yeah, the post VII Church was infested with Communists – and that’s why they elected John Paul II as Pope. ‘Cause JPII was famous for his communist leanings.

    And Reagan was a secret Trotsky fan and Thatcher wore a Che T-shirt in No. 10 Downing Street when she thought nobody was looking.

    Gee, the view from Planet X in the Outer Galaxy really is interesting, but it’s time to return to earth now.

  • I want to make fun of such people, but I just have this image of them in cabins in Montana, writing manifestos while tuning up the bombs …. Forget the tinfoil hat; it’s time for serious tranquilizers and rooms without sharp objects.

  • Gee, you mean exactly the same way that some folks think anyone who believes in an “invisible sky-daddy” should be treated?

    Equating beliefs one doesn’t share with a need to be imprisoned and drugged scares me more than any conspiracy theory.

  • So if someone says (God forfend) “I want the President dead and on a meathook”, we should just shrug our shoulders and say, “Thank God for the First Amendment,” rather than waste any of our resources looking for a potential assassin? I mean, are you willing to affirm such a statement just to get a cheap shot in?

  • Now you’re just being ridiculous–more ridiculous, really.

    Want to talk about cheap shots and “affirming” foolishness to get them in, look in a mirror.

    First you equate conspiracy theories with the Unabomber, then you try to claim that any objection to jailing and drugging people you think have odd beliefs to ignoring death threats.

    Additionally, you drag in the law of the land, which I sure didn’t mention.

  • Talkers don’t act. Actors (not thespians) don’t talk.

    ” . . . jailing people . . . you think have odd beliefs . . .” That was the Inquisition.

    Franklin said something about giving away essential liberty in exchange for safety and losing both.

  • Yes, I can see you’re great at missing points. I should have said the first time around straight out that your initial accusation—”Equating beliefs one doesn’t share with a need to be imprisoned and drugged”—was a ridiculous exaggeration, instead of trying to indirectly point it out with a comparison. I also shouldn’t have attempted humor (“Thank God for the First Amendment”), since you’re bound and determined to take offense at everything I write. Thank goodness you’re so charitable as to presume sanity of conspiracy theorists; could you also do me the great good favor of assuming I don’t want everybody locked up who doesn’t agree with me?

  • I want to make fun of such people, but I just have this image of them in cabins in Montana, writing manifestos while tuning up the bombs …. Forget the tinfoil hat; it’s time for serious tranquilizers and rooms without sharp objects.

    Heaven forbid someone respond to such a thing with any level of thought.

    Clearly, anyone who objects to “them dumdums scary! Lock up and drug!” on any level is horribly on edge to take offense.

  • “Heaven forbid someone respond to such a thing with any level of thought.

    “Clearly, anyone who objects to ‘them dumdums scary! Lock up and drug!’ on any level is horribly on edge to take offense.”

    Oh, dearie me, I have to leave this comment thread now — too many jokes, must walk away from the straight lines ….

  • Fox!

    Trying to draw lessons from history. Not to condemn any one or any institution.

    My point is that the heretic was arrested and questioned (torture was ‘juris prudence’, e.g. Roman law, since ancient times) for what he believed not anything he did.

    You and Prof. Madden need to read (I have a 40 year old volume since college) H.C. Lea’s scholarly books on the Inquisition in the Middle Ages. Lea’s history is dispassionate and even-handed, despite his known anti-Catholic bigotry.

    Here are notes I wrote from Lea and various sources.

    Only a Christian could be a heretic. Inquisition had jurisdiction only over Christians not Muslims or Jews.

    The “crime” was what you believed or thought, did not need an action.

    N.B. Aren’t today’s hate crime laws similar to the Inquisition? In medieval inquisitions, actions were not at issue. The accused heretic’s suspected divergent beliefs and thoughts were offenses. Specific acts were not needed for condemnation.

    Inquisitors’ instructions an example re: an (Dominican o0r Franciscan)Inquisitor dispatched to England to deal with the Templars: “You are to promise them favor and pardon if they confess the truth, but if not, you are to acquaint them that they will be condemned to death.”

    Torquemada’s stated motives were “maintenance of the truth of religion”, ”zeal for the salvation of souls”, extirpation of heresy, and preservation of Christian unity. He was considered the savior of his country and religion.

    From Lea:
    Never acquitted – at best not proven
    Church taken over by lawyers
    People disarmed – no Second Amendment
    Popular support – conservatism of peasants supported church efforts to enforce Christian unity/orthodoxy.
    Ruling class support
    Confiscations – unraveling of sales and loans – retarded commercial development, liberty in France, Spain
    Rules of evidence
    Abuses – feuds
    Material gain – fisc accrued to accusers and nobility
    Suspicion enough
    Abandonment to civil authority – capital punishment

    Others:
    Marranos/Morriscos – covert apostates
    Destroying the church – committing outrages against Christianity – attempted to judaize Spain
    Penal standards of 15th century unchanged from Roman times.
    Zeal for salvation of souls – they literally believed the Gospel: “better to enter the Kingdom without eyes, or hands, or feet, than to be cast into the eternal fires whole.”
    Stop the spread of heresies from damning more souls.
    Truth of religion
    Preserve Christian unity – conservatism of populace and rulers – full support
    Extirpation of heresy

    The Inquisition needs to be reconstituted. Read the coment boxes.

  • Fox!

    As I said above, “Trying to draw lessons from history. Not to condemn any one or any institution.”

    Incorrect about “Confession” among monks . . . and Indulgences . . .

    The Foreword to the Lea Inquisiton books, gave his blunders and stated that his Inquisituion work did not fall under that category. In fact, the books were assigned in a Medieval History class at a Catholic college, just three years after the Vat II, so I doubt that that had sunk in, yet.

    You have way too much time on your hands!

    Who doesn’t learn from history is doomed to repeat . . .

    Here goes.

    The Medieval Church also proclaimed Crusades (diverted knights from the Holy Land) against those who thought differently.

    “Kill them all. God will recognize his own.”
    Arnald-Amalric, Cistercian General, 1208. Papal Legate in Albigensian Crusade against the Cathars in Langueduc. A famous military quote. It refers to the action wherein the city of Biziers refused to turn over its several hundred Cathars to the crusaders, but chose to resist. The entire city was destroyed. This was the priest’s response to the knights when they asked how they would know which individuals were Cathars.

    De Montfort had led the Latin sack of Constantinople. He had several hundred prisoners blinded, noses and upper lips cut off, except one who led the others in line, hand on shoulder, as an example to the next siege location. Pope Innocent III declared this crusade promising crusader indulgences for forty days service (bachelor/knight service). This was much easier than going to Outremer/the Holy Land and cut into manpower there. Also, the Latin sack of Constantinople and those land distributions took knights away from the Holy Land.

    The Cathars – denied among other evils material and sensual things – perfecti, achieved their goal; endura – accepted rite of suicide for those who cannot achieve perfecti status but wanted to renounce all earthly things. D’Ya think that may have influenced the Church’s rules on suicide?

  • Actually T. Shaw De Montfort had left for the Holy Land prior to the sacking of Constantinople which was condemned by Innocent III.

  • The monstrous words: “Slay all; God will know His own,” alleged to have been uttered at the capture of Béziers, by the papal legate, were never pronounced (Tamizey de Larroque, “Rev. des quest. hist.” 1866, I, 168-91).

    Also mentioned bottom of page 18 and top of page 19.

  • Heh, found this story in an Italian paper, via a Russian livejournal post, trying to find the in depth debunking I did a couple of years ago.

    Things never go away on the internet, doesn’t mean you can find ’em though. -.-

Condescender In Chief

Sunday, May 15, AD 2011

Charles Krauthammer has an excellent column about President Obama’s immigration speech in El Paso the other day.  Here’s a sample:

The El Paso speech is notable not for breaking any new ground on immigration but for perfectly illustrating Obama’s political style: the professorial, almost therapeutic, invitation to civil discourse, wrapped around the basest of rhetorical devices — charges of malice compounded with accusations of bad faith. “They’ll never be satisfied,” said Obama about border control. “And I understand that. That’s politics.”

How understanding. The other side plays “politics,” Obama acts in the public interest. Their eyes are on poll numbers, political power, the next election; Obama’s rest fixedly on the little children.

This impugning of motives is an Obama constant. “They” play politics with deficit reduction, with government shutdowns, with health care. And now immigration. It is ironic that such a charge should be made in a speech that is nothing but politics. There is zero chance of any immigration legislation passing Congress in the next two years. El Paso was simply an attempt to gin up the Hispanic vote as part of an openly political two-city, three-event campaign swing in preparation for 2012.

Accordingly, the El Paso speech featured two other staples: the breathtaking invention and the statistical sleight of hand.

Krauthammer continues, calling out the president for his abuse of statistics and his demagoguery.

For a man who has blown so much hot air about civility and changing the dialogue in Washington, President Obama has been in fact more overtly partisan than any president I can recall, and my political memory dates back to Reagan.  Most of the president’s major addresses contain the following elements:

1 Discussion of other side’s opposition to his plans in tone that suggests mild surprise and even outrage that other people have differing viewpoints.  President Obama often pays lip service to respecting other’s viewpoints, but when he actually gets around to discussing policy issues his tone becomes sarcastic and mocking, as though no sentient human being could possibly think other than he does.

2Erecting strawman arguments and mischaracterizing opponents’ positions. An absolute staple of any Obama speech, as highlighted by Krauthammer above.

3 – Testily dismissing opponents.  Having characterized his opponents as people who want to starve the elderly, children, women, Asians, Eskimos, and puppies, President Obama then concludes this portion of his speech with a metaphorical wave of his hand.  On several occasions he has quite literally said that Republican input was not welcome.

What a uniter, that guy.

And here’s the thing.  In a certain sense I don’t really care.  There were times during George Bush’s presidency that I wanted him to be a bit feistier and take on his opponents more fiercely.  Presidents are supposed to be above the fray, but that’s a bit of hogwash.  Presidents can be partisan crusaders as long as they keep it within respectful limits.  In other words, they should be above the level of your typical comment box antagonist.

Besides, when President Obama gets into sarcastic mode it’s one of the few times he almost seems human and non-boring.  Most of the time Obama displays two rhetorical styles: faux Martin Luther King Jr, and robot teleprompter reader.  Either he’s doing his worst impression of a dynamic speaker or else he sounds like someone who has just woken from a deep nap.  I don’t know who these people are that think he’s a great speaker, but frankly he rarely speaks like a normal man except when he’s cranky and sarcastic.  In fact, if he were more regularly sarcastic and petty then I might be able to sit through more of his talks.  At least then they would be entertaining.

No, what grates about his divisive rhetoric is that it contradicts all his campaign blabber from 2008.  Oh, sure, it’s the same nonsense we hear from all camps every election season, and I’m sure several GOP candidates this Fall and Winter will go out of their way to make some appeal to “curing our partisan discord.”  Hopefully I will have my bucket at the ready for such moments.  But not only has Obama not kept this unkeepable promise, he actually has gone above and beyond to completely obliterate any sense of being some kind of uniter.

Unfortunately we will never learn, and again we’ll fall for this cheap rhetoric in the future.  As I said, we’ll get more of the same in 2o12.  Like the rising of the sun and its setting, empty campaign promises of entering into some non partisan fairy land are sure bets.  Such meaningless dribble overlooks two facts of life:  there have been very few times in American history when we have not been subject to deep partisan divides, and there will never be a time in America where people do not have passionate beliefs that are irreconcilable with other beliefs.  That’s not to say we have to be jerks about it, but it should make us wake up to the reality that differences of opinion will always exist in a free country, and glossing over those differences by vacuous campaign rhetoric won’t bring us any closer to bridging those gaps.

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11 Responses to Condescender In Chief

  • “President Obama often pays lip service to respecting other’s viewpoints, but when he actually gets around to discussing policy issues his tone becomes sarcastic and mocking, as though no sentient human being could possibly think other than he does.”

    Prior to becoming President, Obama had lived his life in an ideological bubble where Republicans could be safely disregarded. He lucked into running in 2008 when any Democrat after the economic meltdown in September was going to win, especially when the Republican standard bearer was John McCain who seemed to be running for the award of “Good Loser-2008” rather than President. Next year the GOP, if it can pick a candidate who wants to win rather than to fill in a blank space on a resume as “Defeated Republican candidate for President-2012”, might be able to breach the Obama bubble.

  • Recently, President Obama and his enablers in the libidinous, left-wing media responded to Congressman Ryan’s serious fiscal proposals with harsh, partisan demagoguery (similar to leftist cathi-clueless intellectualls’ calumnies and detractions against John Boehner).

    There is no reasonable Dem fiscal policy proposal or even an iota of a willingness to negotiate or compromise.

    Today’s CPI, if ’twere calculated the way it was calculated prior to 1990, is above 10%, and the unemployment rate would be 15%. The MISERY INDEX is the sum of the current inflation rate and the unemployment rate. The MISERY INDEX would be 25, a record, horrid high. That eclipses the Carter record rotten MISERY INDEX of 22 in June 1980.

    A repeat of Carter calamity is looking more and more like a best case scenario.

  • By now everyone should know that Obama lies. Almost every time he opens his mouth a lie drips out. He lies without embarrassment. He lies easily and repeatedly. He lies, he lies, he lies. And he gets away with it because of the suck-up lamestream media.

  • SaguaroJack, all, you’re right on.

    It’s going to be tough for the GOP in ’12, they have to run against Obama and the MSM. The MSM will do everthing in it’s power to make the GOP candidate look bad.

  • Today’s CPI, if ’twere calculated the way it was calculated prior to 1990, is above 10%, and the unemployment rate would be 15%.

    It is an error to take Mr. ShadowStats seriously.

  • President Ronald Reagan was attacked daily – but he never did back down and won big and Whoever runs against Obama need only to state the facts as President Reagan did – he called Jimmy Carter out every chance he got – remember – “there he goes again” and President Reagan would ripe him a new one – that is all it will take to win – the TRUTH.

  • “I don’t know who these people are that think he’s a great speaker, but frankly he rarely speaks like a normal man except when he’s cranky and sarcastic.” I agree. I have always found the claims that he is a fantastic speaker to be mystifying. Fantastic how??? I think it must just be a charisma thing. He has none, as far as I am concerned, but to the people who love him he doesn’t have to say or do anything, he just has to BE.

  • I don’t know where Stacy McCain ‘stands’ on Obama. Here is a quote.

    “Frankly, I think our current president still has a good way to go before he can merit the claim of being worse than Jimmy Carter, and too many Americans have forgotten exactly how wretched Jimmy was.”

    I think we are getting ‘there.’

  • This love of Obama is nothing other than idolatry. Being involved in nuclear energy, I know several very intelligent and competent nuclear engineers who are bloggers and yet are so in love with the “first black president” that nothing he says could be anything other than words from the mouth of Polymnia, muse of song and oratory. These bloggers know science and engineering to a depth that is astounding. But their minds are deceived and their hearts are hardened. It is almost as if a satanic spell is cast over their eyes and ears.

    The same is sadly true of liberal Demokrat “Catholics.”

  • Even when Obama is mocking good people, he has to use a teleprompter. When he speaks to grade school children, he needs a teleprompter. When expressing sadness about the injury of his friend Gaby Giffords, he needs a teleprompter. There are those who believe that Obama is charismatic and inspirational – he seems to deflate when his teleprompter misfunctions – he is only as intelligent as his teleprompter allows him to be. He has become more and more condescending and deceitful since being elected president. He seems to believe that he is irreplaceable – he will find out how wrong he is in 2012.

  • By the way, Obama is not the first ‘black’ president – he is bi-racial, raised by his white family.

The Mighty Thor!

Sunday, May 15, AD 2011

 

I went to see the Thor movie yesterday with my family and I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it.  Thor was one of the more original superheroes devised by Marvel in the Sixties.  Doctor Donald Blake, on a vacation in Norway, stumbles into a cave where he finds Mjolnir, Thor’s hammer, disguised as a walking stick.  Striking it he is transformed into Thor, god of Thunder.  As Thor, Blake finds that he has super strength, can fly by flinging Mjolnir and hanging on, that Mjolnir is close to indestructible and will return to Thor after he throws it, that he can produce lightning and thunder by striking the ground with Mjolnir, etc.  After a few issues, Thor went to Asgard and met the rest of the panoply of the Norse pantheon, including his father Odin, and his adopted brother Loki, god of mischief and eventually god of evil.

In his early years Thor had adventures on Earth, or Midgard as the Norse referred to it, and in Asgard and the other nine realms of Norse mythology.  An early feature of the series was Tales of Asgard, where episodes of Norse mythology were re-enacted, sort of Marvel Comics meets Classics Illustrated.  Eventually Thor spent most of his time in Asgard, his secret identity of Donald Blake going by the board, especially after Thor learned that he had always been Thor and that Odin had placed him on Midgard in the guise of Donald Blake in order to teach him humility.  Thor was one of my favorite comic book series as I was growing up in the Sixties.  I was fascinated by the Norse mythology background and I found the Thor stories to be more imaginative than the more prosaic and formulaic superhero adventures of most of the other comic book series.  I also found the quasi-Shakespearean language in which Thor and the other Norse “gods” spoke to be a hoot!

Though thou be truly pure of heart – in thine innocence, thou art fair misguided! The true guru thou seekest doth lie within thyselves! Heed you now these words: ‘Tis not by dropping out – but by plunging in – into the maelstrom of life itself – that thou shalt find thy wisdom! There be causes to espouse!! There be battles to be won! There be glory and grandeur all about thee – if thou wilt but see! Aye, there will be time enow for thee to disavow thy heritage – yea, thou mayest drop out fore’er – once Hela herself hath come for thee! But, so long as life endures – thou must live it to the full! Else, thou be unworthy of the title – Man!

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12 Responses to The Mighty Thor!

  • I’m a Spider-Man fan, but I’ll probably go see Thor.

  • What I look for in such a movie:
    a large ham and a sizable side of cheese, delivered with confidence and belief. No “oh, it’s a comic book movie, it doesn’t count” stuff. Being self-conscious about the movie one is in really kills it.

    Sounds like this managed it; can’t wait until we can see it!

  • Of interest for background on Norse mythology and (I think) epics/sagas and verse, would be J. R. R. Tolkein’s “Sigurd and Gudrun” which compilation/translation was recently edited/published by his son.

  • S.H.I.E.L.D. makes an appearance with an Ironman reference.

    I think there may be plans for a big blockbuster Marvel super-hero team-up of Thor, Ironman, Spider-Man, and the Hulk.

  • Yes, Marvel’s gearing up to unite Captain America, Thor, Iron Man and the Incredible Hulk as the Avengers:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Avengers_(2012_film)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avengers_(comics)

    I thoroughly enjoyed Robert Downey Jr’s playing “Tony Stark”/Iron Man — one of the best comic book castings ever.

  • Nice.

    Looks like Ruffalo will replace Ed to play the Hulk (3rd casting change).

    I didn’t read much of the Avengers (mostly Groo and Sgt. Rock) when I was little, but what about the Green Lantern and Wolverine joining the team?

  • Tito,

    I LOVED Groo when I was a (not too young) kid. Very funny stuff.

    People can say what they want about comic books: at least we were reading. Today, kids don’t read anything – not even the Harry Potter series is around to capture their attention. They just play video games and watch movies. It’s sad, really.

    About the Green Lantern joining the Avengers: the Green Lantern was a DC Comics hero, while the Avengers were assembled by the Marvel Comics team.

  • Nicholas,

    Yes, Groo the Wanderer was good clean stuff!

    I believe they were in pre-production on a film back in ’08, but I haven’t read anything since then.

    I have the entire Pacific Comic series (all 8)! Well I think, my parents salvaged some of my stuff after Hurricane Iniki hit, so I’m not sure it survived.

    Anyhoo, I forgot that the Green Lantern is part of the DC universe.

    I read that Hawkeye will be part of the Avengers (coming 2012). Which started filming in April.

  • I loved Groo the Wanderer! =)

  • Vostagg’s line – do not mistake my appetite for apathy – really cracked me up.

  • Volstagg is one of the great characters of the Thor comics Ivan. Basically he is Falstaff transplanted to Asgard. The self proclaimed “Lion of Asgard” Volstagg was a great warrior in his youth but is now much more fond of eating, going on adventures to get away from his nagging wife and numerous kids and telling lies about his deeds of valor. He provided the comedy relief in the Thor comics and did it very well. A good hearted oaf of a man who could find courage and resolution when necessary.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volstagg

  • As you say Donald, the movie’s succeeds by giving due regard to characterisation and dialogue. Add to that spectacular special effects and tight editing and its a winner, as the box-office receipts shows.

SATURDAY EXTRA EDITION

Saturday, May 14, AD 2011

The following is courtesy of ThePulp.it:

The Speaker and the Scholars – Carson Holloway, Catholic Vote

Torture Didn’t Lead Us to Bin Laden – Matthew J. Franck, First Things

The Meatless Mark of Identity Restored – Rich Leonardi, Ten Reasons

Subsidiarity, Funding, and the Arts – Jordan J. Ballor, Acton Institute

Bp. Conley on Transcendence in the Liturgy & the New Translation – Fr. Z

Addressing the Church’s Attrition Problem – Margaret Cabaniss, Crisis Mag

Playing the Bully Card – Anthony S. Layne, Outside the Asylum

Movie Fails to Capture Anti-Catholic Brutality of Spanish Civil War – CNA

A Real Person Can Truly Love – Anthony Buono, 6 Stone Jars

On The Power of Personal Witness in the Priestly Proclamation – Msgr. Pope

Comedy Movie Night – Frank Weathers, Why I Am Catholic

The US/Pakistan Tightrope – George Friedman, MercatorNet

_._

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21 Responses to Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony

  • My favorite instrumental work, unsurpassed in all of music. Leonard Bernstein’s conducting of the 9th in 1988 with the Berlin Philharmonic after the Wall came down was truly memorable. Ever see the film, Immortal Beloved, Don? A pretty good biopic of the greatest German composer (although there are days I’d give that honor to Mozart).

  • Correction. It was the Vienna and here is the vid link:
    http://youtu.be/B_5z0m7cs0A

  • and a wonderful clip from the movie:
    http://youtu.be/N4VouG_EO60

  • I haven’t seen Immortal Beloved Joe, but I’ll try and view it sometime. In regard to Beethoven and Mozart it is too bad we have very little documentation as to their one meeting. (Whether they met at all has been subject to controversy, although I suspect they did.)

  • The clip I posted will whet your whistle for sure. Amazing scene. Mozart, supposedly after meeting a young Beethoven, is reported to have said, “Some day we’ll hear more from this young man.” (paraphrasing.) Thank you, Don, for the starting this thread. Perhaps you might put up Mozart’s Requiem some time. Absolutely stunning.

  • This is my favorite piece of music as well. Absolute perfection. And it was watching Immortal Beloved that prompted me to start listening to Beethoven.

  • Paul, the slow movement (second) from his “Emperor” Concerto is perhaps the most sublime piece of piano music you’ll ever hear.
    Here is Glenn Gould playing it:
    http://youtu.be/XttTpZHQgJw

  • I like Cliburn’s better, though. Gould was better at Bach.
    http://youtu.be/vr2AKxf8m14

  • You knew this was coming:

    “I have watched greatness touch you in another way. I have seen you sit, uninvited and unforced, listening in complete silence to the third movement of the Ninth Symphony. I thought you understood, as much as children can, when I told you that that music was the moment at which Beethoven finally passed beyond the suffering of his life on earth and reached for the hand of God, as God reaches for the hand of Adam in Michelangelo’s version of creation.” – Whittaker Chambers, “Witness”

  • BLARG!

    The baroque has yet to be transcended.

  • Pretty hard to hum Bach except for his lullaby and Gesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring. As for Wagner, as Twain said: “His music is not as bad as it sounds.”

    My favorite compose is Giuseppe Verdi, which is no surprise given my screen name. : )

  • Meant Brahm’s lullaby, of course. Think before you type. I gotta remember that.

  • Brahms’

    There I go again. apostrophe transposed.

  • Do see “Immortal Beloved,” Don–Joe is right, it is a great film. Talented actors given superb material is too rare a combination.

    Sometimes laugh out loud funny, too: After Jeroen Krabbe’s Schindler has learned that Beethoven spurned Isabella Rossellini’s Anna Erdody, the flabbergasted Schindler blurts out “He was a *fool*!” to the flattered Erdody.

    I agreed wholeheartedly with Schindler–I’ve always been enchanted by Rossellini.

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  • My favorite compose is Giuseppe Verdi, which is no surprise given my screen name.

    Joe, it’s good to see a man of such distinguished musical tastes. As you might have guessed from my name I do have a special place in my heart for Italian artists.

  • Figured that, Paul. I am an opera lover first and foremost. Any composer whose name ends in a vowel usually is OK by me. : )

  • Dale, agree. Isabella was and remains a beautiful woman and she and Gary Oldman did a great job in that flick.

  • Bernstein conducting the finale from Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6XlmJtnzwkY&feature=related

    It is truly sublime.

  • Beethoven wrote the Missa Solemnis at the same time as the 9th Symphony. If you want to truly have your doors blown off, try the opening bars of the piece (the Kyrie), the entire Gloria, or the solo violin at the top of its register representing the Holy Spirit during the Sanctus/Benedictus. For the Gloria and the Sanctus, the tempi on the Robert Shaw/Atlanta recording is tough to beat. If you want the quality soloists, the Klemperer recording is phenomenal.

  • Great piece of music, and is the tune to a popular hymn we sing.

    I hang my head and confess to being a phillistine from the outer fringes of civilisation 😉 and hate to admit I didn’t know it was composed by Beethoven. I promise to do penance for my culpable ignorance – sack-cloth and ashes for 7 days.

Catholic Left (Academic Branch) Boehner Bashing

Friday, May 13, AD 2011

For many years Catholic universities and colleges have disgraced themselves by honoring pro-abort speakers.  The indispensable Cardinal Newman Society has taken upon itself the onerous task of keeping track of this ongoing betrayal of the Church and their latest report may be read here.  A prime example was Obama as commencement speaker at Notre Dame in 2009, a debacle which was covered in full by many posts here at The American Catholic.   These affairs have often drawn protests by Catholics who realize that honoring pro-aborts is no part, or rather should be no part, of what it means to be a Catholic institution of higher learning.  

Speaker of the House John Boehner, a pro-life stalwart and a Catholic, has been invited to deliver the commencement address at Catholic University of America on May 14.   81 professors at Catholic colleges and universities, organized by some CUA profs, have decided to try a little bit of payback by protesting Boehner speaking at CUA by claiming that Boehner, because he is in favor of budget cuts, is against the poor and therefore in defiance of Church teaching.

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44 Responses to Catholic Left (Academic Branch) Boehner Bashing

  • B.’s stock just went up.

    Whom they fear they hate and lie about.

    They are “telling” me that B. is not marching lock-step in progressives’ covert war against economic growth, rational energy policies, job creation, and the evil, unjust private sector.

    “Woe to him who calls good evil.”

    The credentialled, cath wing of the humanist lib/radical devoloution . . . infallible ignorance . . . intellectual incompetence. I am being charitable.

    Some questions:

    What evidence do you have?: Cite votes on abortion, gay marriage, infanticide, public school brainwashing in the Seven Deadly Sins, (hint: The POPE’s four non-negotiables), etc. Cite chapter and verse of the Gospels and Scriptures not your chimera compendium of socialist (economic and moral) bankrupcy for America.

    Compared to whom/what? Bernanke, Geithner, Barney Frank, Pelosi, Teddy Chappaquiddick, Jeremiah Wright, . . . ?

    Forget charity: Calumnies, detractions, heterodoxy, uncharity, . . .

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  • I’m waiting for these academia types to send a letter to Sen Bob Casey, who’s going to be the commencement speaker at Villanova this spring, to ask him to refrain from speaking because of his pro-abortion positions.

    Waiting….

    Waiting….

    Waiting….

  • the principle of subsidarity. With good reason, this is something the Catholic Left — or whatever remains of it these days — rarely mentions or grapples with, because they know that it would raise many questions about the prudence of any number of welfare programs they support.

    By the “Catholic Left”, I take it you mean the Episcopate? Have the American bishops ever once opposed a single federal welfare program based on a violation of the principle of subsidiarity? Once? Ever?

  • After the way Kurt and his ilk trashed the Bishops as misinformed, beholden to partisan groups, liars, or all of the above, for their opposition to federal funding of abortion in the health care bill, I think we can safely ignore him whenever he tries to throw the Bishops in our faces over such prudential matters as federal budgetary policy.

  • Personally, Kurt, I don’t think the bishops should oppose such programs. Nor should they support them. The principle of subsidiarity requires an application of prudence. A bishop may well have informed thoughts on such matters, as do I, but if you think their thoughts are more informed than mine you would be mistaken. The bishops should fearlessly teach Catholic teaching, but should wade in with great caution in matters of prudential application for one very important reason: most people will fail to distinguish between the bishops’ explanation of their prudential preferences versus their explanations of actual Catholic teaching. This in turn allows people like the Dishonest 81 to try to fool Catholics into conflating the two; it also harms the credibility of the Church when the bishops’ prudential preferences are later proven wrong.
    Personally, I support a robust federal role in assisting the poor, though I’d organize it differently. My views are based on years of leadership and service to organizations such as the United Way, SVdP, Catholic Charities, and the Salvation Army, Yet, I acknowledge that my opinions, however well-formed, are applications of prudence to Catholic teaching. Reasonable and well-intended Catholics can certainly disagree in good faith. Extending this presumption of good faith is something the Dishonest 81 are unwilling to do.

  • This is bad enough and really turns your stomach but when you add to it the recent news out of the “Vatican” that we simply MUST vigorously act to stop global warming you realize just how much the leftists agenda has poisoned our political theology. The bottom line is they have, with a cheering main stream media which displays its own celebrity Catholics like Pelosi, Fr. Jenkins of ND, and these academic “every day” Catholics behind them, become the more effective purveyor of our faith and its tenants than our Bishops. Where is our 21st century Bishop Sheen and will he please step forward for God’s sake?

  • There they go again! Politicizing the Gospel.

    It’s like they plagiarized a diatribe from a Vietnamese re-education camp manual or from Mao’s Little Red Book.

    It’s left-wing liberal propaganda calling itself church teaching.

  • I didn’t know the Church had a dogmatic position on the 2012 fiscal budget! I wonder if they also have a secret dogmatic position on Oscar picks, because that’s something I’d really like to get a look at.

  • Mike,

    I appreciate your thoughts. I would strongly agree with your statement that “Reasonable and well-intended Catholics can certainly disagree in good faith” about public policy questions.

    While unlike you, I tend to agree with the statements the Bishops have made on social welfare issues, as well as the statements made by the United Way, SVdP and Catholic Charities. However, I am pleased that each of them has presented their statements in a way that does not make a person like you feel excluded or disinclined to participate in the Church, Catholic Charities, SVdeP, etc.

  • It’s my up close and personal opinion, having worked for both private and public non-profit organizations, that the private non-profits work more for the betterment of those in need and do it for less money. State organizations, unfortunately tend to become first and foremost committed to helping their employees. The poor and the weak become afterthoughts.

    However, the logic of this letter writing group would put me at odds with their view of the Catholic Church because I believe that the 10-15% of my income that goes to social services programs would be better spent going to private non-profits that create more benefit with my money and serve more people.

  • So to summarize, Kurt, you disagree with the stance these CUA professors have taken. Can you now go tell the rest of the Catholic left that they are wrong on this?

  • So to summarize, Kurt, you disagree with the stance these CUA professors have taken.

    I went back and re-read the letter. Let me make three points.

    #1 — I am deeply appreciative of the fact that they in no way suggested that he be not allowed to speak or that the event be boycotted. Nor did they trash the University authorities for inviting him. Others on both the Right and the Left haven taken a different course in other cases and my hope is for this to be a model for the future. That part of the letter is very good.

    #2 — They give witness to a vision of Catholic Social action that has been consistently promoted by the Episcopate and call the Speaker to practice that same witness. Like the Catholic signatories, I concur with the Bishops witness and statement on social welfare questions,* so I view that as a good.

    #3 — I don’t see the signatories saying the Speaker is a bad Catholic or a heretic. The letter is vague about Chuch teachings and the Bishops clear and consistent application of those teachings. Perhaps that could be a bit tighter.

    Personally, I thing inviting a Catholic Speaker of the House like John Boehner is an obvious and proper choice for CUA. And I think a polite letter from faculty calling him to embrace the principles of social policy the Bishops have called for is a proper response given the Speaker has not.

    I have twice (to my memory) received the Eucharist at the same Mass where Mr. Boehner also has and I considered it a great witness of the catholicity of the Church.

    *with a few rare exceptions where I respectfully disagree, dissenting towards the position of the secular Right. For example I supported the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act, which the bishops opposed.

  • She is on their “side.”

    So, I won’t hold my breath until the liberats send a letter to Sister Heretic Jeannine Gramick, who blasphemed Jesus as a model homosexual, and is scheduled to lecture at so-called Catholic: Fairfield University.

  • The Catholic left (those leftover liberation theology priests and bishops) are responsible for turning the American Catholic Church’s fundamental reason for existing from the salvation of souls to one of “social justice” administered by the great utopian state on earth. They’ve largely lost their faith in God and have turned their souls over to the socialistic destruction of souls. Our bishop’s councils are not blameless in this heresy.

  • This past week the daily gospel readings have been from John chapter 6. Jesus feeds the 5000 and then He and his disciples go across the lake. The crowd awakes the next morning, and finding Him gone, follows Him to Capernaum where they ask, “Rabbi, when camest thou hither?” Jesus answered, “Verily, verily I say unto you, Ye seek me not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled. Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for the meath which endureth unto eternal life…”

    Liberal Demokrat self-described Catholics are like the crowd that Jesus fed. They want more bread and circuses, but not the bread of eternal life. And sadly, this social justice heresy has infected even many within the clergy.

    Let’s take that point a little further. In John chapter 12 Mary, the sister of Martha, anoints Jesus’ feet with costly oil. Who protests about this, saying that the oil could have been sold for 300 denarii to feed the poor? The traitor Judas Iscariot, that’s who! He was the one conscious of “social justice.” And what does Sacred Scripture say about this? “This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.” How like every liberal Democrat elected to Washington, DC who call themselves Catholic (and sadly not a few Republicans)! Every time I hear about this social justice horse manure, I recall Judas Iscariot and John 12:6. With all our science, engineering and technology, man himself has changed not one iota in 2000 years.

  • Don L and PWP are 100% correct

    Plus, these intellektuals have responded to reasoned GOP proposals (to save our nation, our children, and our grandchildren from national bankruptcy generated by runaway spending) with harsh, partisan demagoguery; and, WORST, call it church teaching.

  • I am a religious Sister serving my Congregation in Guyana. Today I was looking for a responsible Catholic Dialogue website concerning Catholic Americans. Yours was the first place I saw and the introduction looked promising. Then I saw the horribly disrespectful picture that was posted here (disrespectful regarding religious sisters) and I saw how much rancor and hostility was being touted as dialogue. In order to find a mature, intelligent and respectful dialogue I guess I will have to keep looking…

  • Best wishes in your continuing search Sister. The picture you are referring to is only disrespectful to Catholic Leftists who use the Faith as a disguise for their political machinations. As to rancor and hostility, blogs open to public comments are rarely going to be mistaken for a Platonic dialogue, especially when one person, a la Plato, isn’t writing the dialogue. The American Catholic provides a forum for Catholics to debate issues that people feel strongly about and this will sometimes produce somewhat heated comments. We at The American Catholic try to maintain some decorum, but in my experience unless there is at least a little heat there will be no light.

  • Sister,

    Thank you for giving yourself to save souls in Guyana.

  • To Donald R. McClarey. With all due respect. If I minded a little heat I wouldn’t be living here. And I also recognize that public blogs are always going to be open to a certain amount of rancor. However, as to your comment that only Catholic leftists would be offended by the disgraceful picture which was posted. I strongly disagree. The religious sisters that I know here help feed and shelter the homeless, take care of orphans and teach little kids their catechism. This caricature of a religious sister, wearing a symbol of consecration to God, is degrading, ill-thought out and lacks charity. I was hoping, in humility, that you would remove it and say sorry. Was I wrong to hope for that?

  • Yes Sister you were mistaken to hope for that for the reasons I have already explained. The picture was not intended as an attack on anyone other than the persistant misuse of the Faith by those on the political Left which has been an ongoing problem throughout my lifetime, as I think would have been clear to anyone reading my post.

  • What is very clear to me from reading your post, and what bothers me, is not so much that you have a problem with the religious left, but that you don’t mind showing disgraceful caricatures of religious women, including nuns in habit (which I am privileged to wear, Praised be God). It may not have been “intended” to insult, but it definitely did insult. It didn’t insult the religious left, it insulted religious women. You could have gotten your message across without depicting nuns in such a degrading way. As far as my desire to have this disturbing image removed from this site. I still very humbly request that you do it. I will be asking all the sisters I know to pray for that, starting now. And thank you to T. Shaw for your encouragement. Women who serve the Church, sometimes in countries very far away from their home, do so because they love Jesus and want to care for others, pure and simple. They don’t deserve to open up a Catholic website and see that.

  • The issue here involves partisan demagoguery (exaggerations, distortions, fabrications, omissions) leveled at a decent Catholic man by leftists distorting church teaching.

    Mac, “Never apologize. It’s a sign of weakness.” Nathan C. Brittles, Captain, Cavalry, U.S. Army

  • We will have to agree to disagree Sister. The picture will stay up. I would think that prayers might be better directed towards Catholic institutions of higher learning no longer honoring pro-aborts, but de gustibus.

  • Dear T. Shaw, How about demagoguery (distortions, exaggerations, caricatures) leveled at decent Catholic women serving God by religious conservatives who are mad at religious liberals? And since when is apologizing a sign of weakness? And, T. Shaw, does Captain Brittles think going to Confession is a weak unmanly sort of thing to do? It definitely involves apologizing for one’s mistakes. In fact, I think the Church definitely encourages people to apologize (and atone) for their mistakes. And, Mr. McClarey, as far as praying for Catholic Insitutions, that’s a very good idea. I can pray for them and for you, too (to take the insulting picture off the site).

  • “I can pray for them and for you, too”

    I can always use prayers Sister, even if they are requesting God to have me do something I have no intention of doing. I am happy that you have decided to stick around the blog thus far. While you are here you might wish to read some of the other posts on the blog in addition to the one which has raised your ire.

  • I apologize. Really.

    The situation re: Captain Brittles is a military maxim. Therein the officer/leader, even with regard to superiors, cannot evince weakness even if he is wrong, but ever aggressiveness and confidence. Men’s lives depend on him.

    Another military maxim: never make an excuse. “No excuse, sir.” Whatever happens, I am responsible and there is never an excuse.

    I believe in Charity and Confession. Also, and maybe this is even harder, a Spiritual Work of Mercy: “forgive all injuries.”

    There is considerable class, cultural, and political warfare being waged in this country. The left is good at it and constantly shows that it doesn’t give a darn about right or wrong.

  • First, I have the utmost respect and reverence towards those religious women – nuns and sisters – who take their vows seriously, devote their lives to Jesus Christ and work without ceasing for the Kingdom of Heaven. We should and must pray for them and contribute what we can to the good work that they do.

    That being said, the picture of the leftist socialist pseudo-nun with the commie painted on her bosom is nothing like the picture St. John gave us of similar Jezebels in Revelation 2:20-23:

    http://www.usccb.org/nab/bible/revelation/revelation2.htm#v20

    St. John was a lot more forceful.

  • Now, for good or ill (i’m sure the moderators think for ill; I’m not debating that), the signatories of the letter take the Speaker to task for public policy differences where they concur with the Episcopacy and the Speaker dissents from the position taken by the Episcopate. Again, I’m not asserting here the wisdom of the bishops’ positions on these issues, I’m just noting that the Speaker (respectfully) disagrees with the Bishops and the signatories are in agreement with the Bishops on these public policy proposals.

    So my question is, why the derogatory picture of a woman religious? Why not one of a bishop? It might be a virtue or a vice, but you know critics of your viewpoint will think this is done because conservatives find it easier or more pleasurable to pick on women. Why bait us? Just for jollies?

  • “Why bait us?” I don’t know the reason why, but by your own admission we know for certain what side you’re on. Secondly, there would be no bait if the picture weren’t so true.

    It’s amazing that the leftists claim to support wealth redistribution as social justice and codify the same into the law of the land on the supposition that that is the Christian thing to do, yet at the same time would not and do not support measures to restore a sense of righteousness and holiness throughout the land. If the leftists were so intent on Christian virtue as they claim, then they would support measures to outlaw abortion, contraception, homosexual activity, adultery and fornication. The fact that they refuse to support such measures, on the assertion that this isn’t a theocracy, points to the fallacy in their argument to codify (at least their version of) social justice as the law of the land: this isn’t a theocracy.

    Liberals want theocracy (with Obama as their messiah) when it supports redistributing wealth from those who earn to those who don’t. By so doing they can keep the non-wage earner addicted to teat of the public treasury, thereby enslaving these people and ensuring again and again the re-election of their champions of the common good where everyone is equal at the lowest common denominator except for those elite few enlightened enough by the gospel of socialism to lead society forward into a man-made kingdom of heaven.

    Here’s the bottom line: it doesn’t matter how much social justice you have, or how much you spend on the poor. As long as you allow abortion, homosexual marriage and the rest of the murder and filth to go on, there will be NO social justice. Repentance and conversion come BEFORE social justice and NOT afterwards. But liberals, wanting unlimited license to do whatever feels good without consequence, refuse the former, and thus will be denied the later.

  • the Speaker dissents from the position taken by the Episcopate

    Or, more precisely, the staff of the U.S. Catholic Conference, which no one seems to be able to control or kill.

    but you know critics of your viewpoint will think this is done because conservatives find it easier or more pleasurable to pick on women.

    I pull the wings off flies, too.

  • Kurt,

    I’m not particularly interested in defending the picture, but I think the answer to your main question is that few not firmly in the Leftist camp would accept the claim that “the bishops” are against any cuts to or restructuring of entitlements such as outlined in the Ryan budget — certainly not in a way in which disagreement could be classified as “dissent”. This in part because I think very few (except those who do so entirely for convenience) would consider the occasional murmurings out of staff in the political offices of the USCCB to be any kind of “teaching” so much as “this is what these particular staff who are hired to try to apply teaching to the issues of the day have to say.”

    At least when issues such as abortion are being discussed, there is an absolutely clear and doctrinal teaching of the Church in play which it is not hard to figure out how to apply to the political realm — certainly when discussing the scandal of supporting a politician who never found pro-choice legislation he didn’t like. By comparison, while the Church unquestionably teaches us about our duty towards the least fortunate among us, there is no Church teaching or clear extrapolation of Church teaching which informs us what the necessary growth rate or structure of specific federal programs in one country in the this particular time in history should be. (And really, when one thinks about it that way, the idea that there would be seems rather silly.)

    This is why in situations like this conservatives invariably see the sudden fuss for “fidelity” put forward by leftist Catholics as a set of theatrics in order to claim “oh yeah, you’re just the same” when the “dissent” of conservatives relates to fine details of how to allocate tax dollars and entitlements, while the very real dissent on the left involves the legalization of killing the unborn.

  • that few not firmly in the Leftist camp would accept the claim that “the bishops” are against any cuts to or restructuring of entitlements such as outlined in the Ryan budget —

    You need to sign up to get the emails they have put out asking us lay faithful to write letters on various issues. Its pretty clear the signatories and the bishops are asking the Speaker to change his position on the same issues.

    It’s amazing that the leftists claim to support wealth redistribution as social justice and codify the same into the law of the land on the supposition that that is the Christian thing to do, yet at the same time would not and do not support measures to restore a sense of righteousness and holiness throughout the land. If the leftists were so intent on Christian virtue as they claim, then they would support measures to outlaw abortion, contraception, homosexual activity, adultery and fornication.

    I don’t support wealth redistribution as social justice. While I support outlawing abortion, I do oppose laws to throw people in jail for contraceptive use or homosexuality. I welcome a chance to hear your arguement for the conservative position on those two concerns and would give a respectful response supporting my position.

  • “So my question is, why the derogatory picture of a woman religious? Why not one of a bishop?”

    The answer to that question is quite simple: the picture was avaliable. If I had encountered a similar picture of a bishop or a priest or brother I would have run with it. The picture was meant to be a symbol of the Catholic Left, and not to single out women religious. If I had wished to attack women religious, I certainly not have chosen a young woman in a habit, normally the sign these days of a member of an orthodox order. I would have picked out a picture of a sixtyish woman dressed like a social worker, the usual garb of the orders of woman religious who have gone off the rails and are now dying out for lack of young postulants.

  • Yes, the Committee on Domestic Justice and such send out fairly vague (and from a policy point of view, to my mind not very incisive) letters every so often. However, to take that as a representative of what all US bishops think is quickly belied by the fact that when you actually get all the bishops together what they can agree on in the political arena is generally both more vague and more moderate.

    Indeed, if there are two things which the bishops generally can agree on, it’s generally in opposing same sex marriage and opposing abortion — two things which the Democratic party is singularly out of sympathy with.

    (Which, incidentally, simply underscores how unprecedented it was for such a huge number of bishops to come out against Notre Dame giving Obama an award — the event which these signatories are trying to be the equal and opposite to.)

  • Yes, the Committee on Domestic Justice and such send out fairly vague (and from a policy point of view, to my mind not very incisive) letters every so often.

    You need to get on the same list I am on. The alerts are not vague, but pinpoint specific: “Please contact your Senators/Representatives and tell them to vote yes/no on S./HR. 123”

    And they are fairly frequent when Congress is in session.

    And they have been doing so for a long time..I recall getting them my postal delivery before email was an option.

    And there are letter sent to Members of Congress by the Bishops themselves again asking for a particular vote — yes or no — on a particular piece of legislation.

    I respect the right of any Catholic to respectfully disagree with the bishops on any public policy proposal. I just think people are being silly and childish to pretend the bishops pnly mean it when they argree with them and don’t really mean it when they take a position contrary to their opinion.

    The bottom line remains the signatories have done what the bishops have already done — asked the Speaker to support certainly legislative proposals.

  • Well, if this list has a news feed or website, I’d be happy to take a look.

    Maybe I just have an overly exalted view of how the bishops spend their time, but I must admit that I’m having a very hard time believing the claim that all the nations bishops routinely meet or otherwise confer, discuss the merits of specific pieces of legislation, and then ask the faithful (in their capacity as bishops) to support a yes or no vote. I remain convinced, until proved otherwise, that this is the work of a couple of staffers somewhere with at most one or two supervising bishops on a single committee providing signatures.

    And if that is the case — no, I really don’t see that I’m much more required to agree with their judgments on legislative merit than I am with the USCCB film reviews on artistic merit.

  • ask the faithful (in their capacity as bishops) to support a yes or no vote.

    I’m looking at a 2009 statement; “USCCB supports H.R.1” (the Stimulus bill). I don’t know how much more clear it could be they are asking the faithful to support (or oppose) a particular piece of legislation.

    And if that is the case — no, I really don’t see that I’m much more required to agree with their judgments on legislative merit

    No debate. I don’t think any Catholic is required to agree with the Episcopate on a matter of civil legislation. I just think it is silly to try to pretend the bishops don’t take stands on particular pieces of legislation and encourage the lay faithfull to support their position. I can accept that the bishops may be misguided but its just an objective fact they take such positions.

  • When I Google the title you give, Google tells me that no documents match it.

    And again, I’m unclear as to the mechanism which you are claiming exists for the episcopate as a body to express detailed and frequent opinions on specific pieces of legislation. The bishops only convene as a body a few times a year, and on the agendas I’ve seen I don’t recall ever seeing debates on specific pieces of US legislation. How exactly are we to know that the bishops as a body actually hold the opinions which you are to attributing to them? Do they hold an vote of some sort? How much of a majority constitutes “the episcopate” in your view?

    If I went up to my bishop with a specific one of these policy updates and asked, “Do you and all other bishops agree with this?” would he reply in the affirmative, or is it possible he wouldn’t even know that the update had gone out?

  • Kurt,

    Prudential judgments exist.

    Is this the stimulus USCCB told Catholics to push?

    Two economists quoted on Power Line:

    “Our benchmark results suggest that the ARRA created/saved approximately 450 thousand state and local government jobs and destroyed/forestalled roughly one million private sector jobs. State and local government jobs were saved because ARRA funds were largely used to offset state revenue shortfalls and Medicaid increases rather than boost private sector employment. The majority of destroyed/forestalled jobs were in growth industries including health, education, professional and business services.”

    Facts not ideology . . .

    Where is Sgt. Friday when we need him?

    If the USCCB endorses legislation and tells people how to lobby or vote it could lose IRC tax exempt status.

  • “If the USCCB endorses legislation and tells people how to lobby or vote it could lose IRC tax exempt status.”

    Half right. 501(c)(3)s are not permitted to engage in partisan political activity, which includes instructing people to vote for or against candidates. Within certain limits they can endorse or oppose legislation. That said, the broader point is correct. The USCCB should be cautious about sharing its collective prudential judgments for the reasons I expressed earlier as exemplified by the econimic study cited by T Shaw.

  • Sinners. God creates the Hell too. There’s no social justice even God being nailed to dead on the cross by this type of ‘catholic’ people. SIC!

  • T. Shaw writes:

    Kurt,

    Prudential judgments exist.

    Yes. And I have tried to go out of my way to simply make the point that I am just noting the position adopted by the bishops and not suggesting any Catholic is bound to follow their stance on pieces of particular legislation.

    If the USCCB endorses legislation and tells people how to lobby or vote it could lose IRC tax exempt status.

    Mike gives a correct and accurate responses to this. The Bishops have developed and maintain a very good lobbying and grassroots action operation.

    DC,

    And again, I’m unclear as to the mechanism which you are claiming exists for the episcopate as a body to express detailed and frequent opinions on specific pieces of legislation.

    The method is the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. I don’t know why you are puzzled by this.

A Plus For Emperor Palpatine?

Thursday, May 12, AD 2011

The Galactic Empire Times brings us news of a stunning development:

The compound, only about 50 miles from the base of operations for the Imperial Storm Squadron, is at the end of a narrow dirt road and is roughly eight times larger than other homes in the area, which were largely occupied by Tusken Raiders. When Imperial operatives converged on the planet on Saturday, following up on recent intelligence, two local moisture farmers “resisted the assault force” and were killed in the middle of an intense gun battle, a senior Stormtrooper said, but details were still sketchy early Monday morning.

A representative of the Imperial Starfleet said that military and intelligence officials first learned last summer that a “high-value target” was hiding somewhere on the desert world and began working on a plan for going in to get him. Beginning in March, Lord Vader worked closely with a series of several different Admirals serving onboard the Death Star to go over plans for the operation, and on Friday morning gave the final order for members of the 501st Legion (known commonly as “Vader’s Fist”) to strike.

Kenobi and a group of his followers were eventually captured while fleeing the system, and taken aboard the Death Star, which was in the midst of surveying the recent environmental disaster on Alderaan. Darth Vader called it a “targeted operation,” although officials said four tie fighters were lost because of “mechanical failures” and had to be destroyed to keep them from falling into hostile hands.

In addition to Kenobi, two men and one wookiee were killed, one believed to be his young apprentice and the other two his couriers, according to an admiral who briefed reporters under Imperial ground rules forbidding further identification. A woman was killed when she was used as a shield by a male combatant, the Admiral said. Two droids were also reported missing.

“No Stormtroopers were seriously harmed,” Lord Vader said. “They took care to avoid civilian casualties. After a firefight, I defeated my former master and took custody of his body.” Jedi tradition requires burial within 24 hours, but by doing it in deep space, Imperial authorities presumably were trying to avoid creating a shrine for his followers.

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THURSDAY EXTRA EDITION

Thursday, May 12, AD 2011

The following is courtesy of ThePulp.it:

5 Things A Catholic Businessperson Must Know – Dawn Carpenter, Crisis

Phoenix Poll about BishopThomas Olmstead – Fr. Z

Josef Pieper’s Contemplative Assent to the World – Thomas Austenfeld, FP

Benedict XVI Makes Two Key Vatican Appointments – Edward Pentin, NCReg

A Valuable Lesson in Humility – Pat Lencioni, The Integrated Catholic Life™

On 2 Gifts of Deeper Prayer: Silence & Spaciousness – Msgr. Charles Pope

Some Odds and Loose Ends – Thomas Storck, the Distributist Review

Benedict XVI the “Reformist.” The Prosecution Rests – Sandro Magister

Private Judgment & the Rise of Relativism – Dr. Jeff Mirus, Cthlc Culture

A Christian Economist Clarifies Fair Trade – Louie Glinzak, Acton Institute

Right and Wrong in the Liturgy – Rich Leonardi, Ten Reasons

Notre Dame Drops Charges Against Obama Protesters – Thomas A. Uebbing

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4 Responses to This Explains a Lot about Hollywood

TUESDAY EXTRA EDITION

Tuesday, May 10, AD 2011

The following is courtesy of ThePulp.it:

Muslims Vandalize Church in Egypt in “Arab Spring” – Lisa Graas

Praying For Shriver-Schwarzenegger – Patrick Archbold, Crtv Mnrty Rprt

A Streetcar Named Moral Confusion – Zac Alstin, MercatorNet

What Would Jesus Cut? – Shawn Ritenour, Crisis Magazine

Further Proof that Catholic-Anglican Dialogue is Floundering – Carl Olson

Break-Away Episcopalian Parish Will Get Day In Court – Cal Cthlc Daily

Raymond Burke’s Opinion on Female Servers in the E.F. Mass – Fr. Z

‘No Taxpayer Funding of Abortion Act’ – Hadley Arkes, The Cthlc Thing

MN: Legislator Insults & Threatens Parish Priest over Marriage – Th. Peters

. . .Tancred of the Eponymous Flower comments here. . .

IN to Defund Planned Parenthood – Steve Weatherbe, The Daily Register

How Not To Argue Against Torture – Marc DeGirolami, Mirror of Justice

Irish Christian Brothers: Our Future Looks Hopeless – Sarah McDonald, CH

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The Right to Kill Your Kid

Tuesday, May 10, AD 2011

Right you are Klavan on the Culture!  Abortion is a perfect example of the tranformation of a fairly low level debate state by state into a national issue that haunts the nation year after year.  As the Supreme Court succeeded so well in resolving the slavery question by the Dred Scott decision, so it has succeeded in resolving the abortion issue by the Roe v. Wade decsion.  Of course that is if “resolve” means “transform an issue into a nation wide fierce controversy that will never go away until it is resolved through other means than the courts”.

Justice Scalia put it well in his dissent in Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992):

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4 Responses to The Right to Kill Your Kid

  • And that is what liberalism is all about – you’re liberated to do whatever you want without consequence and thus you enslave yourself to the whims of the State. In rejecting God and His Law, the liberal replaces Him with the nanny State that bequeaths on man the “right” to murder our offspring. This is the essence of the liberal mantra for global population control and enviro-wackism. But until abortion is stopped, no liberal scheme for peace and prosperity will work.

    The children of Israel and Judah sacrificed their children to Baal, Asteroth, Molech, and the other Canaanite gods. Today in Obama’s “Amerika” is no different. Nor will God’s response be any different. He is the same yesterday, today and forever.

  • A profound metaphor of the liberal “movement” was presented in “Slumdog Millionaire” where Salim’s brother would bring to adult gangsters (liberals, you liberals!) little boys whom they blinded to increase the “take” of rupees they could beg.

    Liberals’ unworkable, destructive solutions to exaggerated or fabricated crises create greater misery and more (in addition to 45,000,000 killed in abortions) misery and dependent, desperate poor people.

    Let’s go to the record . . . One-in-seven need food stamps; 18% (real) unemployment; unaffordable food/fuel prices; millions of foreclosures; dpressed housing prices; national bankruptcy; etc.

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  • Funny how in the same nearly 40 years we have had an increase in pornography (its mainstream now), sexual assault, child trafficking, recreational drug use, the enslavement of women (assuming you think man is most free in his or her own home and not in the workforce) and all sorts of other ills.

    Could it be that someone has an agenda to separate us from our Maker and make us into slaves? Well at least we have a post-racist, post-partisan president who can save the world (assuming you exclude being safe in your own mother’s womb of course), right?

The Return of Crisis Magazine

Monday, May 9, AD 2011

Crisis Magazine is making a triumphal return in the Catholic blogosphere.  InsideCatholic, the website that succeeded Crisis Magazine as an online version has reverted to the original namesake.  Their managing editor, Margaret Cabaniss, has provided a press release of this exciting news.

Here is their truncated version:

“The Morley Publishing Group (MPG)  board and staff are thrilled to resurrect a brand that, for 25 years, fought for faithful Catholicism, sound economics, and limited government,” said Laurance Alvarado, chairman of MPG.

Founded in 1982 by Ralph McInerny and Michael Novak to respond to the leftward drift of the U.S. bishops, the current staff moved Crisis online as InsideCatholic.com in September 2007. With the decline of the print industry, the transition was both necessary and opportune. Within two months, the website had doubled the magazine’s monthly readership.

“It was a win-win situation for us,” said Brian Saint-Paul, editor and new president of MPG. “However, with today’s technology — particularly the iPad, and other mobile devices — magazines can now thrive in digital form. All the readership trends suggest that at some point in the next 12 to 24 months, we’ll reach a tipping point where Americans choose mobile devices over computers for their news, articles, and other media.”

With the struggling economy, the dramatic expansion of the federal government, and the ongoing deterioration of our culture, the staff concluded that it was time for Crisis Magazine to return.

“When Ralph and Michael started Crisis, it was a sixteen-page pamphlet,” Alvarado noted. “Through their efforts, and the hard work of former and longtime publisher Deal W. Hudson, that pamphlet became the flagship publication for faithful Catholics. It’s no exaggeration to say that Crisis helped initiate a renaissance in Catholic political and economic thought.”

“That’s our inspiration and our goal,” Saint-Paul concluded.

The new site, www.crisismagazine.com, went live today at noon EST.

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2 Responses to The Return of Crisis Magazine

Catholics For Choice Slam Obama For Not Being Pro-Abort Enough

Monday, May 9, AD 2011

 

George Orwell would have loved these bozos.  The George Soros funded front group for anti-Catholic bigotry calling themselves Catholics For Choice, in the latest issue of their house organ Conscience have slammed the most pro-abortion President in our nation’s history as not being a big enough pro-abort.  Go here to view the rag.

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11 Responses to Catholics For Choice Slam Obama For Not Being Pro-Abort Enough

  • Or perhaps this is just a political game by the left to try to make Obama appear not to be the radical pro-abort that he so obviously is.

  • I mean, it’s not like they’re going to vote for anyone else, especially since Obama has given them EVERYTHING they want: 2 pro-abortion Supreme Court Justices, the nationalization of health care with federal funding of abortion (when he was willing to walk away with nothing rather than have the Stupak language inserted), and a federal budget that continues to fund Planned Parenthood (when he was willing to shut down the government rather than see the abortion industry lose its place at the federal teet).

    Sorry, but I’m just not buying that these people’s alleged beef with the President is legit – it’s nothing more than political theater being played out for the masses so that The One can be seen as more “moderate” on abortion. Triangulation, pure and simple.

  • One of my favorite expressions in my professional life Jay is “wheels within wheels”. You may be right, and certainly you are right from the perspective of reality. However, I can see how things might look differently from a very extreme pro-abort position that will not be satisfied until Obama performs one himself during an address to the nation.

  • Who’s the annoying guy in the vid?

  • Unknown to me Joe. I used it because I liked his shocked reaction to the very idea of Catholics For Choice.

  • I thought “Catholics for Choice” gets most of its money from the Ford Foundation, not Soros.

    The local Jesuit college library started carrying the magazine “Conscience” in the past couple years. Any idea if this was an organized nationwide effort?

    I’m trying to get the KofC’s Columbia magazine on the stacks to counter it.

  • I think that guy may be from the non-denominational Bronx.

    Needs to lose the hat; the little womb broom; and the earring. Does that mean they’re “straight” with a left earring??? Not that there’s anything wrong with that . . .

    Otherwise, I have nothing to add on his speech. Talk about oxymorons.

    At the moment of conception not only DNA, but the soul.

    PP et al would have you believe that that one cell evolves from a protozoan(?) to a guppy all the way “up” the so-called “evolutionary chain” to become homo sapiens in nine months . . . So it’s “okay” to kill “it” before “it” ever gets the chance to breathe???

    I took high schoool biology about 50 years ago. Seems they didn’t know that stuff then.

  • “PP et al would have you believe that that one cell evolves from a protozoan(?) to a guppy all the way “up” the so-called “evolutionary chain” to become homo sapiens in nine months . . . So it’s “okay” to kill “it” before “it” ever gets the chance to breathe???’

    Comes from Haeckel who sought to prove Darwin through embryology. Problem was Haeckel lied:

    http://www.angelfire.com/mi/dinosaurs/ontogeny.html

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  • This guy’s name is Gerard Paul. He has great Pro-life videos on YouTube, http://www.youtube.com/user/theprolifeguy

  • What is with these people?

MONDAY EXTRA EDITION

Monday, May 9, AD 2011

The following is courtesy of ThePulp.it:

Marini (not Guido) says JP2 Wanted All the Liturgical Nonsense – Fr. Z

The Richness of Scripture – Mark Shea, National Catholic Register

AK Doctors Stay True to Catholic Teaching on Contraception – P. C. F.

Back from Minnesota, where a Marriage Battle is Brewing – Thomas Peters

The Pill Kills – Deltaflute, Diapers and Drivel

Detroit Welcomes New Bishops – Joe Kohn, Catholic News Service

They Say Marriage is a Dying Institution – Jennifer Hartline, Cthlc Online

Ritual of Wonder: About the Mass – Erica Bonnell, The Holy Soap Opera

Sacred Tradition Rules, Sola Scriptura Drools – Devin Rose, SJV

Ground Zero for Human Rights – Kathryn Jean Lopez, NRO

The Great Forward March of the Reform of the Reform – Anna Arco, CH

Bulldog Evangelization? – Giuseppe Ambrose, The Three Bs

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68 Responses to Conservative Reality, Liberal Fantasies

  • Liberalism and conservatism, two delusions separated by a common reality.

  • Brzzt! Wrong Maryland Bill, but thanks for playing!

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  • Ah, Law & Order!
    It would be interesting to compare murders of abortionists as such during the run of the show (maybe two) vs. L&O-world (at least once a season).

    Otoh, Jack McCoy seems never to have prosecuted a gay domestic homicide or a “hate crime” like defacing a church.

  • And Jack McCoy is portrayed as a Catholic, though a non-practicing one. How like all too many so-called “Catholics” in these United States. God will raise son of Abraham from the stones themselves – Matthew 3:9.

  • McCoy is the liberal stereotype of the “good” Catholic, a fallen away one! Raised by a brutal Irish Catholic cop father who beat him and was a racist. ( The example given on the show is hilarious. McCoy’s dad beats him up for dating a Polish girl!) Since his father was Irish of course he was a drunk and McCoy has his own (past) problems with the bottle.

    As to religion:

    “McCoy was raised Catholic but does not appear to be in practice, and has not been for some time. In the episode “Angel”, it is revealed that McCoy was educated by the Jesuits. In the Season 17 episode “Good Faith”, he describes himself as “a lapsed Catholic”. On several occasions, religion has been the subject of various cases. In the episode “Thrill”, in which two teenage boys are accused of killing a man just for fun, McCoy finds his case particularly complicated when one of the suspects confesses the crime to his uncle, who happens to be a priest. When the confession tape is labeled privileged, McCoy ignores the bishop’s request to preserve the sacrament of reconciliation and instead tries to use the tape as evidence. When Detective Rey Curtis (Benjamin Bratt) tries to dissuade McCoy from doing so, reminding him that he is a Catholic, McCoy responds, “Not when I’m at work.”

    By the episode “Under God”, McCoy had particularly soured on the Church. When a man is accused of killing a drug dealer who killed the man’s son, a priest confesses to the crime. Though McCoy personally believes that the priest is covering for the man, he prosecutes the priest instead. At the end of the episode, McCoy says that he lost his faith after the death of a childhood friend.”

    If McCoy had been black, this level of stereotyping would involve constant references to rhythym, Gospel singing, fried chicken and watermelons. Of course such crude stereotyping is reserved for “safe” targets today like Irish Catholics and Evangelical Christians.

  • No, pro-lifers are not the ones supporting murder in the abortion debate, communists are not romantic reformers who just want to help people, most murders are not committed by rich white men, segregationists in the South were not Republicans, the US military is not filled with bloodthirsty maniacs, Christians are not some sort of weird cult, Republicans are not all idiots

    As a liberal, I don’t subscribe to a single one of those propositions. But I am intriged by the conservative proposition that in the private market, businesses will do what is most efficient and profitable, except in the entertainment industry, where the bosses substitute a doctrinaire ideology contrary to wise business practices. Fascinating.

  • “where the bosses substitute a doctrinaire ideology contrary to wise business practices.”

    The endless parade of “America is the demon in the war on terror” films Kurt, which have all tanked at the box office, demonstrate that ideology will usually trump the bottom line in Hollywood.

  • Having read Kurt’s response, I confess that I simply don’t understand the liberal mindset. Liberals are a completely alien breed. I see sex ed and condom use taught in public schools because of libs. I see homosexual sodomy glorified as a civil right because of libs. I see abortion touted as reproductive rights because of libs. I see porn touted as freedom of speech because of libs. I just don’t get it, and quite frankly don’t want to.

  • Really Donald? That is the best you can do? Repeating of the most tired, hackneyed phrases on the internet?

    I had written a lengthy rebuttal, pointing out a few of the many conservative delusions that exist but then I decided, I would just steal the words of someone else like you did… but I think I will choose someone better to steal from… so in the words of G.K. Chesterton, “The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected.”

    So, if I am wrong, I guess Chesterton is wrong as well… though I think it would be unfortunate for anyone claiming to be Catholic to dismiss him with some trite comeback.

  • Are Conservatives or Republicans the party of God? Nope. Are the liberals or Democrats? Nope. But of the two, only one legitimatizes abortion as reproductive rights, only one sanctifies homosexual sodomy, only one promotes porn as freedom of speech, only one demands sex ed in public schools, only one has consistently worked to marginalize anything Christian in Western Society.

    I am not enamored with conservativism or the Republican Party, and they certainly aren’t the party of God. But the alternative is worse.

  • “The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected.”

    In what century and country did Chesty exist?

    Burt Prelutsky quoted at “Some Have Hats”: “Whether it’s insisting that global warming is going to raise ocean levels by 20 feet; that heterosexual AIDS is a major health concern; that law-abiding Americans can’t be trusted with guns; that every nation and every culture is superior to our own; that illegal aliens and Islamic jihadists are entitled to all the rights and privileges of U.S. citizens; that providing 31 million additional people with health insurance will save us billions of dollars; that Supreme Court justices should essentially be social workers who get to wear their robes to work; that drilling for oil and digging for coal are evil endeavors; that windmills and sunbeams can supply all the energy a modern industrial nation needs; that Christian symbols should be eliminated from the national landscape; and that the redistribution of personal wealth is a moral imperative; liberals display an arrogant disdain for traditional American virtues, not to mention logic and common sense.”

  • . But I am intriged by the conservative proposition that in the private market, businesses will do what is most efficient and profitable, except in the entertainment industry, where the bosses substitute a doctrinaire ideology contrary to wise business practices. Fascinating.

    I would imagine that the contention is more that many in the entertainment industry and heavily ideological, and that they often end up producing grey biased entertainment as a result without particularly meaning to. (Obviously, with some “issue” films, they do mean to.)

    That is the sort of thing which happens when people have radically different ideas about reality.

  • Really Donald? That is the best you can do? Repeating of the most tired, hackneyed phrases on the internet?

    This coming from someone whose entire comment was just a tired refrain we’ve heard countless times from the “holier than thou” brigade of supposed non-partisans. Really, what was the in depth, staggering commentary that Donald was supposed to reply to?

    So, if I am wrong, I guess Chesterton is wrong as well…

    I didn’t realize that GK Chesterton was an infallible source of Christian witness whose every utterance every Catholic had to fully agree with. And here I thought he was just a brilliant polemicist who was prone to human error just like everybody else. I also note that Chesterton was writing early 20th century politics, and therefore his quip might not be fully apt to today’s situation.

  • “Really Donald? That is the best you can do? Repeating of the most tired, hackneyed phrases on the internet?”

    Your comment wasn’t worth any more effort than that Maryland Bill.

    “The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected.”

    G.K. Chesterton wasted a good many years on Distributist nonsense and that quotation is part and parcel of his attempt along with his brother Cecil and Hilaire Belloc to forge a “third way” in economics and politics. Like most of Chesterton’s obiter dicta in regard to most subjects it is much more amusing than true. This of course leaves aside the fact that the terms Progressive and Conservative have different meanings in an English and American political context.

  • I would imagine that the contention is more that many in the entertainment industry and heavily ideological, and that they often end up producing grey biased entertainment as a result without particularly meaning to. (Obviously, with some “issue” films, they do mean to.)

    That is the sort of thing which happens when people have radically different ideas about reality.

    But I thought private market forces should correct this? Why is the entertainment industry a singular exception to the natural and beneficial forces of the private market?

    BTW, as a liberal, I also don’t subscribe to any of the additional assertions put forward as hallmarks of liberalism, save the fact I and most liberals do oppose laws to imprison homosexuals.

  • Why doesn’t Detroit make better cars, when it’s obvious from the fact people buy so many Hondas and Toyotas that people want something other than a lot of what the big three provide?

    Free markets aren’t perfectly efficient unless you work at U Chicago, and what they do is select winners and losers, not make sure that all market actors do what people want. (plus, there’s obviously a large segment of the population which is fine with Hollywood stereotypes because they agree with them)

    And then, there are times when Hollywood does turn out things which more conservative audiences love — and sometimes Hollywood itself seems a little surprised by this. I recall Siskal and Ebert (who I used to watch religiously — and much enjoyed despite their bias) doing an entire extra show on why they hated The movie Independence Day and couldn’t understand why anyone else liked it.

  • Free markets aren’t perfectly efficient …[they do] not make sure that all market actors do what people want.

    Thank you. That’s all I’m looking for.

    Well, maybe that and maybe an explanation of the conservative moral objection to pornography, abortion, etc. but the suggestion that “its just business” when people profit from such — I’m referring to the “pass” given a Republican Governor who owned facilities doing abortions and the likely GOP presidential candidate who was on the board of directors of a leading distributor of pornography.

  • Why is the entertainment industry a singular exception to the natural and beneficial forces of the private market?

    Two hypotheses:

    1. The social thought incorporated into a work of entertainment is generally incidental to why it appeals to the modal viewer.

    2. The studio executives are reliant on their (creative) labor force. The sort of social and political polarities in contemporary society often devolve into a battle between word and image merchants and every other sector, with the wage-earning majority lining up on one side according to a different set of subcultural affiliations. Antecedent to an understanding of social life and antecedent to an occupational choice are factors which render one highly corellated to another (re-inforced by socialization). In short, there are almost no Republicans in the screen-writing trade. (In other trades, pervasive groupthink removes competitive disadvantages to dysfunctional practices. If everyone defines a dissident as an incompetant, no service provider suffers from ejecting him.

    Antecedent to your question is a notion that central planning or mercantile regulations or granting para-statal privileges to rent-seeking associations corrects defects in the operations of market, rather than manufacturing new (and worse) defects.

  • Nobody ever said that there aren’t liberal Republicans otherwise known as RINOs. They are worse than Democrats because they are hypocrites and traitors to conservativism. For example, Guiliani is Republican and pro-abortion (as well as an adulterer). I wouldn’t vote for him. If it came to a choice between him and a liberal, and there were no 3rd party choices, then I simply wouldn’t vote. I am disgusted with this whole stinking mess where principles are sacrificed for political expediency. And I am equally disgusted at the liberal mantra of social justice and the common good while they murder the unborn. But then again, that’s politics.

    Jesus did tell Pontius Pilate that His Kingdom is NOT of this world.

  • Art,

    On the prose style, I gotta say: Total win. 😉

    Kurt,

    Well, maybe that and maybe an explanation of the conservative moral objection to pornography, abortion, etc. but the suggestion that “its just business” when people profit from such — I’m referring to the “pass” given a Republican Governor who owned facilities doing abortions and the likely GOP presidential candidate who was on the board of directors of a leading distributor of pornography.

    Well, clearly social conservatives (the divide between social conservatives and business conservatives and libertarians is particularly wide on this issue) don’t think that pornography and abortion are “just a business”, in that they seek to ban them via force of law.

    I think you’d find that social conservatives would be highly negative towards any candidate who profited directly from abortion or pornography — though the issue is that liberal sometimes play dumb “gotcha” games on this kind of topic. If a conservative candidate is sitting on the board of Vivid Entertainment or Playboy, I think you’d find conservatives would drop him like the proverbial hot potato. However, if he’s on the board of Time Warner (a cable company and internet provider which, yes, does provide porn on some of it’s channels) a lot of people would see that as something other than making money off porn — even if they would strongly support forcing Time Warner to stop providing porn.

    Similarly, people are naturally going to look at sitting on the board of an abortion clinic (something which exists to provide abortion) differently from sitting on the board of a hospital which does occasionally perform abortions (as most non-Catholic hospitals do.)

  • Law and Order actually has had characters from across the political spectrum, and while occasionally you will have an episode driven by a political hobbyhorse, it’s one of the few shows on TV where likable characters espouse conservative and/or religious views. For example, while Jack McCoy (Sam Waterson’s character) is a liberal lapsed Catholic, Abbie Carmichael (Angie Harmon) was a pro-life conservative, as was McCoy’s boss (Fred Thompson), and his current replacement as lead ADA. Rey Curtis (Benjamin Bratt) was a devout Catholic, as his current replacement.

    In fact, I’d say that the split between liberal and conservative characters on the show is roughly 50/50, and the conservative ones are not portrayed as being less moral, caring, competent, etc., than the liberal ones. Given that the show is set in New York City, that may mean conservatives are overrepresented.

  • Angie Harmon didn’t stay long. A subsequent Christian ADA was murdered after less than a year. Fred Thompson didn’t stay too long due to Presidential ambitions and his very long term predecessor was a fairly standard Old Guard Liberal with curmudgeonly flourishes that I rather liked. The stories themselves do have a usually very pronounced liberal slant, except on the death penalty. I do however enjoy the outrage over one episode on abortion “Dignity” by the rabidly pro-abort RH Reality Check:

    http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/blog/2009/10/28/the-law-and-order-abortion-disaster-and-the-wasteland-tv

  • I am intriged by the conservative proposition that in the private market, businesses will do what is most efficient and profitable, except in the entertainment industry, where the bosses substitute a doctrinaire ideology contrary to wise business practices.

    This is an astute point. This, combined with the fact that when people have attempted to make explicitly conservative films or television shows they have tended to be flops, makes me think that the current liberal tilt to media probably is what is most efficient and profitable.

    Why is that? Well, for one thing, writers, actors, etc., tend to be liberal. This means that the most talented writers are probably going to write with a liberal slant and the most powerful performances are going to be by actors who espouse liberal beliefs. So even if movie producers were going strictly on quality, we would expect a liberal slant overall.

    On the consumer side, my guess is that when it comes down to it, conservatives simply care less about having contrary political views espoused by films and tv shows they watch than do liberals. I know a lot of conservatives, for example, who really loved the show the West Wing, despite its liberal politics, because the acting, writing, etc. were really good. Would liberals have similarly flocked to the show if the heroes were all conservatives? Somehow I doubt it.

    There are some conservatives who are really adverse to watching a movie or tv show with a liberal message, but this type of person is less likely to watch movies or tv to begin with (or at least is less likely to watch certain types of movies or tv), so it’s easier for them to be ignored.

    I also think you shouldn’t underestimate the effect of globalization here. Things like Superman renouncing his U.S. citizenship are less about the anti-Americanism of comic book writers than they are the need to appeal to a non-American readership, and the same is true for movies and (to a lesser extent) tv as well. The typical non-American movie viewer is probably to the left of the typical American one, which is going to skew consumer preferences when it comes to politics.

    Finally, I think it’s possible that certain political views are just easier to portray on screen than others. It’s easy to show the hardships involved in cutting spending on government programs, for example, while showing the supply side effects of cutting taxes (assuming there are any) is more difficult.

  • Darwin,

    That’s a fair answer. I appreciate it.

    Personally, I would not sit on the board of a hospital that did elective abortions (unless maybe my service would result in a change of policy). But on the other hand, I support the new health care law. Some of my friends would do the reverse in both situations. They are still my friends and people who I disagree with but do not disrespect.

  • Angie Harmon didn’t stay long. A subsequent Christian ADA was murdered after less than a year. Fred Thompson didn’t stay too long due to Presidential ambitions

    Harmon was on the show for four years, Thompson for five. In any event, I didn’t list all the conservative characters on the show, just a representative sampling (you note, for example, that Annie Parisse’s character was also a conservative Catholic).

  • Blackader said, “There are some conservatives who are really adverse to watching a movie or tv show with a liberal message, but this type of person is less likely to watch movies or tv to begin with (or at least is less likely to watch certain types of movies or tv), so it’s easier for them to be ignored.”

    Nice to know I am being ignored. TV is full of liberal drivel, sexual immorality and all manner of other nonsense. I can’t be bothered to fill my head with such godlessness. And no, godlessness does NOT constitute good acting or good stories. It’s godless, after all.

    It’s also interesting to note that liberal “Catholics” feel the same way about EWTN. No surprise there.

  • Donald,
    I have to admit, you make it very difficult to maintain even a semblance of Christian charity. Your responses are like those that so many conservatives claim to hate when they come from liberals, dripping with a sense of smug superiority. However, since you seem to think that conservatism is based on clear thinking and only liberals are subject to living in a fantasy world, I can point out several fantasies that conservatives have embraced.

    1. Any conservative who believes that we can cut government debt without raising taxes (especially by cutting taxes on the rich), is just deluding themselves about what the American public really wants. Yes, they want to cut the debt, but they don’t want to loose any of their Social Security or Medicare; and if those can’t be cut (as well as defense), then trying to balance the budget at our current tax rates is like trying to keep the titanic sinking with a bucket.

    2. The notion that free-markets are the solution to the end of all economic ills. With all due respect to Adam Smith, many men don’t act with enlightened self interest. While some will act with enlightened self interest, others will cravenly do anything to maximize their short term self interest and ignore the long term consequences, both to themselves and others. Surely the existence of guys like Bernie Madoff prove that.

    3. An belief by many in the conservative movement that the ends justify the means.

    4. Your own apparent belief that because the segregationists in the south were not Republicans that they were not conservatives (I guess they must have become conservative when they switched to the Republican party in the 1970s and 1980s? — Though in fairness to them, many of them had left segregationist ideas behind them after the 1960s)

    5. The belief by conservatives (shared by liberals) that whenever they win an election, it means they have a mandate from the people to run the government along purely ideological lines when in fact most Americans want things run by consensus.

    I could go on. But I will finish by stating, that no, I don’t think Chesterton is somehow infallible, nor do I believe that that the politics of early 20th century England are the same as 21st century America. What I do believe, however, is that all forms of liberalism and conservatism do not properly take into account man’s fallen nature and to make allowances for it. Chesterton recognized that, most modern liberals and conservatives (even those of the Catholic variety) don’t.

  • Your own apparent belief that because the segregationists in the south were not Republicans that they were not conservatives (I guess they must have become conservative when they switched to the Republican party in the 1970s and 1980s? —

    I think Southern members of Congress largely accepted the New Deal. We can check the tabulations on the key legislation.

    Clare Boothe Luce rejected segregation. What political label most precisely describes her? How about Pres. Eisenhower? Everett Dirksen?

    Other than Strom Thurmond and Mills Godwin, I think it would be difficult to find many quondam segregationists among working public officials who later made careers in the Republican Party, (and both Godwin and Thurmond gave up on segregation after about 1970). Every Southern Senator (bar two – Thurmond and John Tower) who cast a vote against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 concluded his political career as a Democrat.

    You could rummage around the records of state legislators and local councillors later elected to higher office. Trent Lott might also be an example, but he was not a public figure prior to 1972.

  • “I have to admit, you make it very difficult to maintain even a semblance of Christian charity.”

    I haven’t noticed you making any heroic effort along those lines Maryland Bill.

    “Any conservative who believes that we can cut government debt without raising taxes (especially by cutting taxes on the rich), is just deluding themselves about what the American public really wants.”

    Anyone who thinks that we can get out of debt by raising taxes is obviously ignorant of just how much revenue can be raised from increasing taxes, the negative impact of the tax increases on the economy, the fact that government since circa 1965 has not used increased revenue for reducing debt but rather as a spur to increasing spending, and the fact that the problem is not too little revenue to government but rather too much government spending.

    “The notion that free-markets are the solution to the end of all economic ills.”

    Only the solution to the problem of having a prosperous economy as opposed to an economy that is stagnant or worse.

    “An belief by many in the conservative movement that the ends justify the means.”

    Rubbish as indicated by the fact that you give no examples.

    “Your own apparent belief that because the segregationists in the south were not Republicans that they were not conservatives”

    Actually most of them were New Deal liberals on economic matters. For examples check out George Wallace, Orville Faubus and Lester Maddox.

    “The belief by conservatives (shared by liberals) that whenever they win an election, it means they have a mandate from the people to run the government along purely ideological lines when in fact most Americans want things run by consensus.”

    Oh the fallacy of the yellow line in the middle of the road as the path to good government. Most Americans want successful government and problems solved. If a politician can do that, Reagan for example, they will follow him. If a politician can’t, Obama is thus far on that path, they won’t. The idea that consensus has ever produced much of use in American history is simply false. The Constitution was hotly contested, as was the development of internal improvements by the Federal government, the abolition of slavery, the buildup of defense prior to World War II, Reagan’s policy of increasing defense spending that helped end the Cold War, etc. American history is replete with intense political fights where one side wins and enacts its program. Sometimes the program succeeds and sometimes it fails, but consensus has rarely played a decisive role in resolving hotly contested issues in American history.

  • “There are some conservatives who are really adverse to watching a movie or tv show with a liberal message, but this type of person is less likely to watch movies or tv to begin with (or at least is less likely to watch certain types of movies or tv), so it’s easier for them to be ignored.”

    Considering that conservatives are 40% of the population BA that is a large part of the market to ignore. I suspect that the vast majority of conservatives do not enjoy having a liberal political message slammed down their throats while they are watching a film. The tanking of every anti-war film in regard to the War on Terror might indicate that your analysis is perhaps shaky. In stark contrast we have the success of 300, which Frank Miller used as a metaphor for the War on Terror.

    http://politicalmavens.com/index.php/2007/04/29/frank-miller-of-300-and-sin-city-fame-knows-the-war-on-terror-is-real/

    Then we have the huge success of The Passion of the Christ, and the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, and the lesser, although still impressive, success of the Narnia films. There is a huge and obvious hunger for quality conservative themed films, a hunger mostly unmet by Hollywood for largely ideological reasons.

  • Well, 20 percent of we the people admit to being liberal.

    That means 80 percent of us merit calumny, detraction and personal destruction.

    Sen. Rand Paul is slipping off the evil end in confronting unions (100 approved by CST!!).

    Here is what Sen. Paul wants to confront.

    “A result of back-room deals between union bosses and their tax-and-spend Congressional puppets, compulsory unionism provisions in federal law currently empower union officials to:

    >>>Force nearly 11 million Americans to pay tribute to a union boss to get or keep a job …

    >>>Brazenly loot union treasuries to fund the election of their hand-picked political puppet candidates like Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid …

    >>>Terrorize workers and communities with violent strikes — where they get away with beatings, arson — even murder.”

  • Well said, T Shaw. Well said!

  • I agree with Alice – well said, T. Shaw.

    I just don’t understand liberal fantasies at all. It’s as though they are from a different planet.

  • BA,

    On the consumer side, my guess is that when it comes down to it, conservatives simply care less about having contrary political views espoused by films and tv shows they watch than do liberals.

    That’s an interesting point.

    Other things to consider are:

    – The bias in fiction TV is often around the sorts of situations or characters that show up, they’re not obvious propaganda, so there’s a certain portion of the population which probably isn’t political enough to notice the bias regardless of their opinions. If I had to guess, it’s probably only about 10% on the right and 10% on the left who notice, while 80% of the population may really not notice that most fiction TV has much political content at all.

    – The segment of the population which watches the most TV (young people and single people) is also the most liberal according to all political polls. So it probably makes sense that entertainments slants towards their interests. Frankly, even if there was some amazing conservatively leaning drama out there, I wouldn’t have the time to watch it. Whereas a lot of people in their teens and early 20s can keep up with multiple series and go see a movie every week.

    Kurt,

    I would probably agree with you about the hospital board scenario, but I can see how people end up taking different stands on these kind of issues. For instance, I could imagine that a good Catholic sitting on the board of a major insurer like Kaiser or Humana would do a lot more good by bringing a conscience to doing that work than by refusing because those kind of insurers do provide a (fairly small, compared to dedicated abortion facilities) number of abortions each year.

    Also, to be honest, a lot of people who may not have it occur to them right off that the hospital which does so much good work is also involved in that kind of work.

  • There are not nearly as many conservative ideas that fall into the realm of fantasy as there are liberal ideas, but there are a few that I would place into that category:

    the notion that ALL fiscal problems, no matter how dire, can always be solved purely by budget cuts or eliminating “waste, fraud and abuse”

    the notion that all illegal immigrants, regardless of circumstances, are by definition “criminals” (illegal immigration is a civil violation, NOT a federal or state crime for which one can be placed on trial or go to jail);

    the notion that society can be cleanly divided into longsuffering, hardworking taxpayers on one side and greedy, bloodsucking “tax eaters” on the other and never the twain shall meet. I agree it’s not a good thing for people to be overly dependent on government, but to pretend that it’s possible to have absolute zero “dependence” on government is fantasy in my opinion. Everyone pays SOME kind of taxes, either directly or indirectly, and everyone receives some kind of benefit from government even if not directly in the form of a check;

    and finally, the notion that any work outside the for-profit private sector is inherently unproductive, useless and a mere drain on the economy.

    Each of these ideas has some merit, but conservatives who believe these approaches are 100 percent effective at all times, or applicable in all circumstances no matter what, veer away from reality in my opinion.

  • Perhaps Elaine Krewer has not had interface with either North Carolina DMV or the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission to see at first hand how citizens of what was once a Christian Constitutional Republic are now treated as subjects of a liberal atheist socialist demokracy.

    Over the past month or so since moving to Charlotte, I have had to visit DMV about seven times to finally get my NC license and my vehicle registered. I won’t bore you with the details, but suffice it to say that every time I went, the administrative specialist at the desk would stop at the first thing he found wrong, tell me to get that fixed, and dismiss me. He wouldn’t tell me everything I had to do. Indeed, when I got that one thing fixed and revisited the office, the administrative specialist would find something else wrong and send me away to bring another rock. Finally I succeeded in getting all my t’s crossed and i’s dotted – that was earlier this morning. I was so overjoyed that I went to shake the administrative specialist’s hand. He looked at me and at my hand, and then cast his eyes down to his desk. But some people want us to think that government workers aren’t like that. Personal experience says otherwise. Indeed, anytime a person gets a government position, that feeling of superiority and “governance” comes into play, and soveriegn citizens who actually work for a living and produce real wealth are the ones to suffer.

    I have seen the exact same thing in my professional life as a nuclear engineer. I have been involved in submitting paperwork to the US NRC (the federal regulator for commercial nuclear power plants) and more often than not the regulator is more concerned with document headers and footers, and outline formatting than with technical substance. The delays that are caused by moving outline numbering on a document a quarter inch just to satisfy an NRC Request for Additional Information amounts to billions of dollars in cost overruns that every one of you end up paying in electric billing. And I am told that it’s worse with the EPA which regulates emission controls on coal fired power plants. But this is the kind of obstructionism that Elaine apparently wants.

    Dr. Pournelle describes this as the Iron Law of Bureaucracy: “…in any bureaucratic organization there will be two kinds of people: those who work to further the actual goals of the organization, and those who work for the organization itself. Examples in education would be teachers who work and sacrifice to teach children, vs. union representatives who work to protect any teacher including the most incompetent. The Iron Law states that in all cases, the second type of person will always gain control of the organization, and will always write the rules under which the organization functions.”

    Liberalism has had its day. It will implode itself under the weight of its own bureaucracy with the support and adulation of liberal Demokrats.

    BTW, unless you’re a nuclear engineer with 30+ years of training and experience, don’t use Japan as an example of why we should de-nuke ourselves. You don’t know the details and I don’t have space in here to educate you to the level you would need to understand the details. Suffice it to say that upgrades that we did to US GE BWR-3 and 4s with Mark I Containments would have mitigated if not prevented the sad events at Fukushima Daiichi, but the Japanese did NOT implement those upgrades, so when an Act of Nature occurred, the inevitable happened. I won’t bother to mention the collusion between the Japanese government regulator and the industry that was complicit in all this, but that’s what happens when the State is involved.

  • Kurt,

    I would probably agree with you about the hospital board scenario, but I can see how people end up taking different stands on these kind of issues.

    Me too. That’s why I spoke personally and not as an universal obligation.

    BTW, on the issue of the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act, the simple truth is that it would have been widely understood at the time where one stood on these proposals if one said the “conservative position” and the “liberal position.” William F. Buckley and Senator Goldwater were on one side and Hubert Humphrey and Walter Reuther were on the other side.

    The conservative movement today has moved away from those positions and most living conservatives today are too young to ever have been part of the conservative movement when they embraced these views.

    Of course, at the same time liberals led the fight for the civil rights, we also largely believed the phone company should be nationalized and everyone have a black, desktop phone. Today’s liberals accept that history has shown that we were right on civil rights and wrong on the phone company.

    Lastly, I should give a hat tip to my neo-conservative friends who have no conservative baggage on civil rights issues: Jeanne Kilpatrick, Richard John Neuhaus, Irving Kristol, Ben Wattenberg, Norman Podhoretz, and Michael Novak. My shared past with them has always made their current views seem friendlier, even when we disagree.

  • William F. Buckley and Senator Goldwater were on one side and Hubert Humphrey and Walter Reuther were on the other side.

    Everett Dirksen and Clare Boothe Luce were on one side and Albert Gore, Sr. and Orville Faubus were on the other.

  • The conservative movement today has moved away from those positions and most living conservatives today are too young to ever have been part of the conservative movement when they embraced these views.

    That is just an anachronism, Kurt. Differences in the assessment of segregation were regional and subcultural. (Re the assessment of the propriety of federal legislation regulating petty commercial transactions, landlord-tenant transactions, &c – the differences were driven by social philosophy).

  • Of course, at the same time liberals led the fight for the civil rights, we also largely believed the phone company should be nationalized and everyone have a black, desktop phone. Today’s liberals accept that history has shown that we were right on civil rights and wrong on the phone company.

    I do not recall anyone of consequence arguing AT & T should be nationalized. Robert Kuttner thought it should remain a regulated monopoly but one debarred from manufacturing and trading in hardware, but that was ca. 1982, when the dissolution of the Bell System was all but a done deal.

    There is a difference between a critique of segregation and being ‘right on civil rights’.

  • Clare Boothe Luce…

    When she wasn’t snorting cocaine! :0

  • The only piece of civil rights legislation ever opposed by Goldwater was the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Goldwater, due to his pro-abort position which he did his best to hide while he was in public life, long ago ceased to be a hero of mine, but simple justice warrants a correct statement of the record.
    In regard to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 80% of House Republicans supported it as opposed to 63% of Democrats, and in the Senate 82% of Republicans supported it as opposed to 69% of Democrats. Civil Rights legislation passed in the Sixties because Democrats changed their mind as a party on Civil Rights for blacks. Republican party platforms since the Civil War had supported Civil Rights for blacks year after year with Republican bills being bottled up by the Senate due to Democrat filibusters.

    A typical Republican platform. This one was from 1924, when the Ku Klux Klan was a rising power in the land:

    “The Negro
    We urge the congress to enact at the earliest possible date a federal anti-lynching law so that the full influence of the federal government may be wielded to exterminate this hideous crime. We believe that much of the misunderstanding which now exists can be eliminated by humane and sympathetic study of its causes. The president has recommended the creation of a commission for the investigation of social and economic conditions and the promotion of mutual understanding and confidence.”

    Here is a plank from the Republican Party Platform of 1944:

    “Racial and Religious Intolerance
    We unreservedly condemn the injection into American life of appeals to racial or religious prejudice.

    We pledge an immediate Congressional inquiry to ascertain the extent to which mistreatment, segregation and discrimination against Negroes who are in our armed forces are impairing morale and efficiency, and the adoption of corrective legislation.

    We pledge the establishment by Federal legislation of a permanent Fair Employment Practice Commission.”

  • Kurt,
    Regarding CBL, I think you mean LSD.

    http://www.psychoactive.org.uk/LSD/intro.htm

    During the 1950s LSD was legal and considered potentially therapeutic by many in the medical field, some of whom enjoyed the drug recreationally with the jet set crowd. While rather silly and potentially dangerous, it is doubtful that this use related to her support for civil rights.

    I do think that their is some truth to the assertion that self-identified conservatives were not as enthusiastic about civil rights as self-identified liberals, on the whole. That said, context and vocabulary matters. For instance, during that era (and in some respects similar to today) there was a conflation between populism and conservativism insomuch as many self-identified conservatives actually were not very conservative in any objective sense. That said, the fact that the highly intelligent and principled WFB Jr. opposed civil rights legislation is revealing. Conservatives on the whole are suspicious of change, especially change they perceive as forced rather than organic. As a conservative I see this as a healthy presumption, but a rebuttable one. IMO we failed to rebut that impulse satisfactorily in connection with the civil rights movement that emerged after WWII. That said, I am very much speaking in generalities, and stereotyping either conservatives or Republicans of that era on civil rights is perilous. As Don points out, on the whole the Republicans were more conservative than the Democrats ever since the early 1930s (at least), and yet were also more progressive on civil rights. History is complicated.

  • What were we talking abo . . .

    In today’s news: Union thugs and MoveOn.org goons crash tea party rally in New York screaming at patriots.

    Precedent Obama ignores TX requests for fire aid, flies in to collect campaign cash.

    Fist Lady Michelle Antoinette will fete rapper who rants about killing police officers and immolating President Bush.

    Gangstas rule!

  • Might the Madison Ave-Hollywood Blvd-Wall St axis of evil be intentionally pumping out liberal fantasy in order to manage the thinking of the masses? Could we be falling for the false left-right paradigm as part of psychological warfare being waged by the forces of evil in ‘pop culture’?

    I see the word ‘conservative’ bandied about, yet I am not so sure we all have the same definition. When Chesterton used the word, he meant something quite different than what we call ‘conservative’ in America today. Keep in mind that the Founding Fathers, who by all accounts would be considered ‘conservative’ today, were in fact liberals in the 1780s.

    I also notice ‘conservative’ and Republican being used interchangeably. This is a major error. The Republican Party today is far more broad. You have the establishment RINOs who are more or less Democrats, the libertarians like both Pauls, so-called social conservatives, strict constructionist Constitutionalists, neo-cons who are warmongering Progressives, and a smattering of other minor groups. What unites most of these people? The simple fact that the Democrats are anti-American, materialist, relativist morons.

    So the fact is that Republicans do suck because they are politicians and since The Prince, politics is a very ugly game. However, the Democrats not only suck – they are evil to boot. Most thinking persons side with the Republicans simply because the Democrats represent the rapid destruction of the Republic and the Republicans are slow enough to give us time to prevent the inevitable demise.

    Nevertheless, I am still curious what most commentators mean when they say ‘conservative’ – of course, that is another question for another post.

  • Paul, where did I ever say I was in favor of any type of “obstructionism”? You ran into some government employees that did not serve you well and gave you the runaround. I have too, many times, and just about every day. I have also run into many private sector employees who do the same. I think the “iron law” also applies in the private sector, as does the “Peter Principle” of people rising to the level of their incompetence.

    Full disclosure here: I am a state employee myself, and was a private sector employee for 20 years previously. I try very hard NEVER to treat anyone dismissively or arrogantly, and if someone asks a question I try to get them the answer right away. If I don’t know the answer, I try to point them in the right direction to find the answer. If someone calls to ask a question, often they will say “Sorry to bother you” or “Hope I’m not taking up too much of your time,” to which I say “No problem — I’m here to be ‘bothered’!” I will probably never be an agency head, that is true, but that isn’t my bag anyway.

    The “conservative fantasy” that I was referring to was not the GENERAL idea that government should be smaller. It is the notion that NO job outside of the for-profit private sector or the military (or possibly law enforcement) is a “real” or “productive” job and that EVERY government or non-profit position is unnecessary and could be, or ought to be, eliminated.

    Many conservative ideas are good and I agree with them. But some of them veer off into the realm of utopianism or fantasy when they are treated as absolute, 100 percent foolproof panaceas or assumed to be workable in all circumstances.

  • Thanks for the response, Elaine. I find much to agree with in it. But overall, my experience has been that any time govt gets as big and as powerful as ours is, it’s high time to start neutering it by stemming the flow of cash, borrowed or taxed.

    I am going to give two examples of govt screwups with perhaps the best govt agency I have ever worked with and that’s the US NRC. If the NRC is this screwed up, then how screwed up are the rest? Another thing to remember: none of the govt flunkies that run these agencies are voted on. They are political appointees beholden to no one but the appointer.

    Now a certain Dr. Gary Kao was a physician for the Veterans Admin in Philly. He was in charge of using radioactive sources for patent treatment. His story may be read here:

    http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1034/ML103410390.pdf

    From 2002 to 2008 this physician employed by the govt was responsible for the mis-administration of radioactive sources in 91 of 97 VA medical events involving radiation during that time period. NO ONE did anything until the VA decided to do a Health Physics inspection at the end of the time period. And the NRC itself failed to do anything after the second, third, fourth, etc. event. This went on for SIX years and I even found a report (can’t locate right now) where that doctor dropped a radioactive source on a patent’s behind. Finally after six years and 91 mistakes, the NRC decides to bar him from using radioactive sources. BTW, where’s the American Medical Association in all this? And why is that guy STILL a physician?

    Here is another example of our great govt at work. In 2002 during a refueling outage at the Davis Besse nuclear power plant owned and operated by First Energy, a through-wall hole the size of a football was found in the six inch low allow carbon steel reactor vessel wall. The only thing holding back the fires of creation from exploding into containment was a quarter inch of the inconel inner liner for the reactor pressure vessel. You can read about that here:

    http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/nuregs/brochures/br0353/br0353r1.pdf

    You might say that it’s great the NRC caught them and shame on free enterprise greed that shortened refueling outages by bypassing needful inspections of the RPV penetrations for the Control Rod Drive Mechanisms. But what you do NOT know is that this nuclear power pliant repeatedly petitioned the NRC during the late 90s to forego the RPV head inspections and the NRC granted the exemption request – I guess management at the plant got the headers and footers on the document submittal right.

    Holy crap! Think about this: if that quarter inch of inconel had let loose, multiple control rods would have been ejected from the reactor under a pressure of 2235 psig. That’s over one ton per square inch for those out there who don’t know science and engineering. A positive reactivity addition accident would have occurred, the reactor might well have gone prompt critical, and the core would have been destroyed well before the Reactor Protection and Engineering Safeguards Systems could have responded. But by golly, the document headers and footers were right!

    Yes, when I think about these kinds of things, I get excited. And I get angry. And this is the BEST govt agency. Doctors overdosing patients for years before it does anything. And some plants getting deferments in inspections who shouldn’t while other plants get needlessly hammered on ungrounded fears and sensationalist hype from dope smoking anti-nuclear hippie dropouts from the 60s.

    The best govt is a limited govt whose sole job is the common defense, and public safety. BTW, if you think the NRC is bad, then what about the Dept of Minerals and Resources that allowed BP its exemptions on Deep Water Horizons?

    When we as a society reject God as our King, then we get govt as our God and people die.

    One last thing: in case you ask, I teach on both of the events I described about – Dr. Kao and Davis Besse – in my new job. I use these as operating experience for my students. These are what NOT to do. And my students – one and all – are flabbergasted that events like these happened, but they do because people put their faith in govt instead of in God. And sadly, I can’t teach the integrity and honesty that’s required to prevent events like these from happening in the first place. And that’s what it all boils down to. You can’t instill integrity and honesty by govt regulation. Period.

  • Mike writes:

    Kurt,
    Regarding CBL, I think you mean LSD.

    Yes, thank you.

    I do think that their is some truth to the assertion that self-identified conservatives were not as enthusiastic about civil rights as self-identified liberals, …. That said, the fact that the highly intelligent and principled WFB Jr. opposed civil rights legislation is revealing. Conservatives on the whole are suspicious of change, especially change they perceive as forced rather than organic. As a conservative I see this as a healthy presumption, but a rebuttable one. IMO we failed to rebut that impulse satisfactorily in connection with the civil rights movement that emerged after WWII. …History is complicated.

    I see the point of that explanation of the politics of the time. Thank you.

    Again, the importance of civil rights issues to liberals like myself is largely why I feel a good rapport with my neo-con friends like Irving Kristol, Jeanne Kilpatrick and Fr. Richard John Neuhaus. Their liberalism early in their life, particularly on civil rights issues, makes their late in life conservativism more interesting.

    Some make the same observation about our Holy Father, clearly no conservative for the first half of his life from his youthful opposition to Right-Wing totalitarianism to his mid-life role at the Council.

  • What will Catholics eat on Fridays?

    From Drudge: Commercial fishermen say Federal regulations destroying the industry; causing suicide attempts.

    PS: Rand Paul is the most interesting man in the Senate. That tells more about the senate than about Mr. Paul.

  • Kurt, So!!!

    Conservatives support “Right-Wing Totalitarianism”!!!

    No need to waste any more energy click clacking.

    Simply copy and paste: “Liberals are infallibly blessed. Conservatives are worse than Hitler.”

    I had stopped reading (lips became exhausted) the detractions, karacter assassinations, non sequiturs, anyhow. Also, bruised forehead started bleeding . . .

  • “Conservatives support ‘Right-Wing Totalitarianism’!!!”

    So what exactly is the unlimited govt regulation adored by the liberals called where non-elected civil servants can let a govt doctor mis-expose patients to radioactive sources 91 times over six years, but stymie any free market expansion in building passively safe Generation III+ reactors?

    I think we’ll find out as gas prices go through the roof and we start choking on coal dust fumes. We’ll need more of those sources for cancer therapy. Maybe by that time the govt agency in charge can ensure that certain doctors get properly trained.

    Totalitarianism indeed! When at a commercial nuclear power plant it’s almost to the point where I can’t even visit the bathroom without the security access computer recording where I’m at, but liberals just luuuuuvvvvvv those regulations!

    When you don’t have faith in God and don’t place primacy on holiness and righteousness which alone engender integrity and honesty, then you have to have an unlimited govt. And that is the hallmark and essence of liberalism.

    Yup, bread and circuses for the undeserving while those who produce real wealth are ground into the dust.
    Let’s hope no one has Doctor Gary Kao as his physician!

  • t Shaw, my friend, remind me of the name of the political party of the guy with the thin, little umbrella?

  • Paul Primavera, institutions run by human beings make errors or act with venality and you can spin narratives about them for days. Countrywide Financial was not a public enterprise. Three questions: in the circumstance in question, is it systemically worse in the public sector than in the private sector; is the function performed by the public sector replicable by the private sector; can there be improvement in performance by the public agency in question? I suspect you would find that, as a rule, the answers are as follows:

    1. Generally true.

    2. Postal delivery, yes. Policing and regulation, no.

    3. Yes. (In the case of the Department of Motor Vehicles and implementing county clerk’s offices here in New York, there has been dramatic improvement over the last 30 years. Transferring a title or renewing your license is quite pleasant compared to what it was thirty years ago).

  • Art Deco,

    I’m sure you’re right. But that’s small consolation to the 91 patients that Dr. Gary Kao mis-dosed with radiation at the Veterans Administration, and small consolation to the electric rate payers of Ohio who inevitably ended up footing the two billion dollar bill for First Energy’s degraded RPV head fiasco that the US NRC was complicit in. And those are only TWO examples – I have tons more as I am sure you do, too.

    And yes, I do wish that North Carolina would learn something from NYS DMV. I am amazed that I actually have to say something positive about the State that I left in 2007, but there you have it. Sometimes govt can improve (yet it’s an all too rare phenomenon). You will see more incentive for improvement in the free market simply because there is monetary incentive. In most cases the govt flunky gets paid no matter what.

  • Kurt,

    That was weak. Having a good rapport with neocons is obvious for a self-described liberal because both ideologies stem from the Left. Limiting civil rights to merely the scope of discrimination against blacks really misses the whole point of civil rights, which is why the so-called civil rights champions actually promote racism, class warfare and division. So your assertion that ‘conservatives’ are going to avoid it is foolish. You are a victim of the liberal fantasy referred to above.

    If one is authentically conservative (not to used interchangeably with Republicans) then one is obligated to adhere to and conform to the eternal laws. Catholicism is inherently conservative and yet it is also progressive, but not in the sense that Progressivism is. Modern liberalism is Progressivism as is neo-conservatism. Both ideologies are statist and un-American.

    This may be difficult for you to understand in your current paradigm because you seem to think that conservatism is from the right and that the right is fascist. This is an error. The right is less government and the extreme right is no government. Fascism is a lot of government and a sick hybrid of political interest and private ownership each seeking to protect the other from the forces of freedom and the people’s rights. That puts fascism (which you convolute with conservatism) on the left. It is an especially violent form of corporatism because it is nationalistic and jingoistic in nature. This is why Nazism appeals to jihadists. Authentic conservatism coming from the right, just short of anarchy, is the respect of the individual, the family and the community and does not put one against the other. It respects life, private property and freedom of conscience. Conservatism has little need for civil rights because very few of the natural rights of the individual are given to the state in the fist place.

    Authentic conservatism also respects subsidiarity. True conservatism is very, very Catholic and promotes the proper conquest of this present darkness and the establishment of true social justice. Modern liberalism couches itself in Catholic social justice language, yet is inherently anti-Catholic. You have fallen for one of the devil’s most subtle snares.

    Before you take this as a personal attack, stop to consider it as an opportunity to examine your current views and seek to understand why God is challenging you on this blog in this way.

  • But that’s small consolation to the 91 patients that Dr. Gary Kao mis-dosed with radiation at the Veterans Administration

    I understand. I knew a woman whose ability to look after herself was ruined by iatrogenic peripheral neruopathy, which she acquired through an excessively long course of an antibiotic, which course was excessively long because her physician mistook alternating bouts of infectious colitis and ulcerative colitis for one long bout of infectious colitis. (And she acquired the infectious colitis from excess use of broad-spectrum antibiotics, which knocked out the normal flora in her colon). The physician who prescribed these antibiotics is not and was not employed by the Veterans’ Administration. She has her own practice.

    t Shaw, my friend, remind me of the name of the political party of the guy with the thin, little umbrella?

    Come again? I own a thin little umbrella.

  • Come again? I own a thin little umbrella.

    So did Burgess Meredith. Perhaps the idea is that the Democrat Party is run like the Penguin’s criminal syndicate. I guess that makes John Boehner Bruce Wayne.

  • “t Shaw, my friend, remind me of the name of the political party of the guy with the thin, little umbrella?”

    It’s NOT going to rain!?!?!?!?

    I forgot my umbrella!!

    No, wait!

    Liberals are infallibly blessed. I am worse than Hitler.

  • … the so-called civil rights champions actually promote racism…

    I think we are back where we started. On the matter of the so-called civil rights movement, you had conservatives like WFB, Goldwater, etc. generally on one side and liberals like Dr. King, Walter Reuther, Whitney Young, Clarence Mitchell, Hubert H. Humphrey, and George Meany taking the other positon. The merits of the two sides we can debate, but there seems little doubt there was a conservative side and a liberal side on this policy question. Thank you for helping to clarify this.

  • No wait!

    I just looked out the window. There’s not a cloud. Whew!!!

    Charlie Chaplin carried a cane not a thin, little umbrella.

    Was it Huey Long?

    What was the question??

    Oh, what political potty . . .

  • “… the so-called civil rights champions actually promote racism…”

    Not in 1964. In 2011, yes. Plus, class envy/hatred, lawlessness, and racketeering, too.

    Start with the Osama rhyming demagogue living at 1600 Pensylvania Avenue . . .

  • Has the Fist Lady disinvited to 1600 PA Ave. that artiste who makes his bones jammering about killing police officers and immolating President Bush?

    That common dud also (as did Osama and Michelle) spent his life getting religion from Jeremiah (I hate whitey) Wright.

    Here goes nuffin’:

    “Trialdog” commented at “Gateway Pundit”:
    “I’m making a list of everyone to hate and I might have missed one. Let’s see. Obama is my choice for President because:
    I should hate ‘the rich.’
    I should hate ‘the conservatives.’
    I should hate ‘people who want a secure border.’
    I should hate ‘big oil.’
    I should hate ‘big pharma.’
    I should hate ‘banks.’
    I should hate ‘anti-choice people.’
    I should hate ‘people who drive SUVs.’
    I should hate ‘republicans.’
    Once I sufficiently hate all these people, then Obama can save me from the hate by attacking the hate until I am enlightened.
    “Thank God for Obama! He brings us all together!!”

    Now, got to go to a wake. For a relative whom Common, Michele, Osama, and Wright would all agree is a now a “good white man.”

  • I am not sure why Neville Chamberlain’s maladroit exercise in diplomacy driven by reasons of state qualifies him as a fascist sympathiser. (One might also note that his French counterpart Edouard Daladier was not a quondam royalist but a member of the Radical Party, the home of bourgeois adherents to the Revolution’s laicite. So was Pierre Laval).

  • He was not. Neville Chamberlain was a weak fool in reference to standing up to Hitler, but he had no sympathy for fascism. Here is his radio address after war commenced between the British Empire and Nazi Germany.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qtrOJnpmz6s

    Churchill of course, the British Bull Dog incarnate, was also a Conservative, after a youthful sojourn with the Liberals.

  • He was not. Neville Chamberlain was a weak fool in reference to standing up to Hitler, but he had no sympathy for fascism

    Very true.

63 Responses to Mel Gibson and Beaver Bomb

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  • Don,
    First, Kyle Killen wrote the script, not Gibson. Second, at least two other big name stars were originally set to take the starring role. I know of know evidence at all that the film is a commentary on Gibson’s own experiences.
    And to be honest, I’m surprised you would view box office success to be a proxy for anything. I fully expect “There Be Dragons” to bomb, but it is a fine film. Same for “Jane Eyre.”
    Gibson did indeed take a axe to his life, and it is true that “The Beaver” is bombing at the box office; neither of these facts sheds any light on the merit of the film in my opinion.

  • This is a rare occasion when we will have to agree to disagree Mike. I defy anyone to see this piece of tripe and not think that it is a bizarre look at Mel Gibson’s own estrangement from his family, and I rejoice in the failure of this film since the entire concept is monumentally stupid, except as the blackest of black comedies. In this case box office failure is a sign of the film going audience rejecting true rubbish.

  • It got mediocre ratings on Rotten Tomatoes. Not great but not terrible. Surprisingly, the reviews universally praise Gibson’s performance and unsurprisingly mock the premise.

  • I’ve read a number of reviews; all agree Gibson’s performance is brilliant…given the premise, I find it hard to believe the guy with the hand puppet coudl be brilliant. And given Gibson’s relationship with critics post-Passion, I find it even harder to believe that critics were going easy on him. There must be something there.

  • From Peter Rainer’s review in the Christian Science Monitor:

    “Foster seems blinkered and tone-deaf to what’s actually appearing onscreen. When, for example, Walter is reunited with his family – which includes his unconditionally adoring young son Henry (Riley Thomas Stewart) and the unforgiving 17-year-old Porter (the adept Anton Yelchin) – there’s a quick sex scene where we see Walter, Meredith, and, yes, the beaver, frolicking together in bed. He addresses his toy-store workers, as he does everybody else, almost entirely through the hand puppet, and there are precious few reaction shots of them looking anything more than agreeably amused.

    When Walter turns the company around and ends up on the cover of national magazines, and, puppet in hand, appears on “The Today Show,” Foster’s fable enters the realm of blithering unbelievability.

    “The Beaver” never even makes it clear if Walter knows his puppet is just a puppet. He passes out cards to people explaining that he is utilizing a “prescription puppet,” but that could just be the beaver talking. When the puppet becomes increasingly uppity and malevolent, I guess we’re supposed to think that Walter is healing himself by separating himself from his alter ego and becoming whole again. But we never get a sense of what Walter was like before his personality fractured, so his impending wholeness doesn’t have much heft.

    The story line involving Porter is comparatively conventional, which, under the circumstances, is something of a relief. Even before the beaver shows up, Porter already hates his father so much that he papers his room with Post-its notating all of Walter’s many traits he wants expunged from himself. He’s the sole person who barks at Walter about how crazy he seems. Only when Porter becomes involved with a brainy cheerleader (a fine Jennifer Lawrence) with her own pack of troubles does he begin to register the compassion necessary to reunite with his father.

    Or at least that’s what we’re supposed to believe. I’ve rarely seen a movie about severe malcontents that ended on such a note of unearned uplift. Who knows? Maybe it would have all turned out better if the beaver had been a bunny rabbit. Grade: C-”

    The only thing brilliant about this film is if the lights are turned up at the end for the audience to flee for the exits.

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  • Strange – very strange; but that’s the way Mel has gone recently, and a departure form his previously relatively sane life is now manifesting itself.

  • Hmmm…. clearly you did not see the movie yourself and are using others’ articles to try to form your own. That leaves me doubting anything else you write. I did see the movie, liked it, and would recommend it to anyone.

  • “That leaves me doubting anything else you write.”

    One does not have to eat garbage Jennifer to recognize it as such. There is enough floating around on the internet about this cinematic trainwreck that I do not have to cast my money down this particular rathole in order to condemn it and the beaver it slouched in on.

  • you admit you haven’t seen this! I’ve wasted 5 minutes of my life on your blother…see ya!

  • I don’t know how we will soldier on here at TAC without your vital one comment contribution bob c., but somehow we will.

  • I don’t understand a movie review for which you haven’t seen the movie.

  • What part of the concepts of bomb and garbage are difficult for you to comprehend Jennifer? Let’s see if I can sum up the film for you: Gibson is a deeply depressed man who has alienated his family (a classic case of bad art imitating bad life); he uses a beaver hand puppet to speak for him in a bizarre attempt to mend his broken life; instead of Gibson’s character being committed to a loonie bin, the hand puppet becomes a mechanism to get back together with his family, and inspires a hit new toy for his toy company that the puppet beaver now runs; when he and his wife have a tender moment in bed the puppet is present. Gibson ultimately breaks free of the need to use the puppet. Have I missed anything salient from this beaver’s breakfast of an insult to the movie going world?

  • Makes me think of “Larz and the Real Girl” which had a similar premise and was actually very good. So I’m withholding judgment on this one.

  • Thanks to his new imaginary pal, Mel is chewing up the scenery again. : )

  • I would note in case any of Mel Gibson’s fans think that I am carrying on a vendetta against Gibson, that I have liked many of his films, including the Mad Max trilogy, Gallipoli, Braveheart and The Patriot. His The Passion of The Christ moved me more deeply than any film I have ever seen. Gibson has talent as an actor and a director. However, his career is also littered with films that have proven to be both artistic and money making bombs. In the case of The Beaver he has made the blockbuster of all such bombs.

  • I’m curious to see it, myself. But given how little free time away from our squad my Much Better Half and I get, I’ll probably wait until this is available “On Demand.”

    I think it’s safe to say that one’s position on Mel Gibson films/performances are de gustibus, which makes Mr. Bob’s reaction a puzzler. This is much different from the effect of one’s position on whether or not it is safe to root for the New York Yankees. Which, according to the 23rd session of the Council of Trent, it is *not*–anathema sit.

  • Donald you are most certainly an ignorant and an arrogant hypocrite, as it is to be expected, and a liar!
    One do not make a review of a movie one has not seen, and in worse without even mentioning that “detail” in its review!
    thats both couardise and hypocrisy of the highest degree!
    You do not dare to watch the movie becausie oyu know it is good nad your hatress of mel Gibson stop oyu form doing that.

    Name one single movie that was a artistic deisaster or a finacial disaster n mels career???
    All Mel Gibsons movie are fantastic even the most dubious script and even as secodn role or thrisd like in umer city or Gallipoli, Mle Gibson simlly master it and elevate it to a higher degre and he do the same wiht his co actors and actresses, so to make them do a better performance even they are mediocre ot begin wiht, than they will ahve been if it iddnt hd been him in the leading role.
    Youa re an idiot.
    Hamlet with Mle gibson n it is the alone one used in english class and universty when teachign about Shakespear and this alone says it al
    together with the fact that Mle Gibosn made 4 movies, all blockbusters, bakc to back that same year!!
    you are jsut deeply jealus.
    That movie was made in august to novemebr 2009 and can hardly reflect mel Gibson life.
    and as real painfull and embarrassing part of your gratuitiuous criticism, coems the fact tha tthe ovie is ABOUT DEPREESSION AND MENTAL DESEASE which oyu completely forgot, or shall i said totaly ignored as oyu never saw that movie!
    People sufferign form depression are often shun fom society cause its a difficultdesease ot cope wiht, explain an dhsow and the family having to live wiht it, either they are parents of a child suferign form this condition or husbands and kids, arre also ignroed,
    Cancer or a broken leg or other vidible desease are more easily accepted as wella s not sovisible ones like diabets 1, but the tem of depression and how it occur and affect peoples life is seldomly debated.
    this movie shed light into it and has the adavantage to dont falliot the trap to mkae it into an entertianment movie wiht a pupet..
    Your sarcastic review is laughable and scandalous at the same time
    you dont have sen it but oyu surely want ot influence everybody else on not going to se it.
    SHAME ON YOU!!!
    You are certianly not a christina but a pantomime of it.
    This movie is fantastic and its sale also show it.
    It was show in 21 theaters and made as much as Thor, a bokcbuster, taken inot acount that THor was shwon in all theaters alos aborad and since april, and whos entrance price is much higher oftne the dobble, because it is shown in 3D, and people wihsing to see it in 2 D had huge porblem ot fod a theater that show it that way.
    take a calculator and see for yourself.
    The beaver made 1659 dollars per theater per day, meanig it will ahve made 28 million dolars nation wide ahd it been pned like thor was, and adding the extra by 3D ticket, thats 50 Million dolars!! agaisnt 66 Millon dolars ofr THor who is a blockbuster and not a artistic mvie as the ebaver is.
    peoplebring their gf to weathc thor but not to go watgch a mvie about depression.. specialy on mother day..
    Add to it that Thor was show form thursday while the beaver only form friday and only in 21 theaters, while Thor was hwoed nationwide and in eurpe where its premiere started in April.
    So after runing for 3 weeks, Thor made 66 millions dolars, with overpriced 3D tickets, and on Mother days weekend.
    after running for 3 days in limted theaters, and only in USA, The Beaver made over 50% comparativly, to Thor.
    It means that when the Beaver will open nationwide on May 20, and then internationaly from june 1st, it will gross 200 to 300 milion dollars, whihc is what spiderman, a huge marvel blockbuster, grossed in 2002.

    Eat that and eat yoru hat, pal!
    btw thor grossd a lot of money, but people who saw it idnt like it. i saw critics form the people in europe and they said the movie die 20 minutes after it started. very impressive for 20 minutes and then it dies. like the movie was over and turn into a regu’lar rose water romantic flick.

    On “the other hand”, maybe you actualy suffer form depression and need to get yoruslef a beaver!!
    could be why oyu feel so challenged to go see it! it wil confront your inner deamons.

    The movie is planed to be shwo in Cannes festival ad was put out of competittn as a sure winner.. so ot let a chance to the french movies..
    its a fact.
    read what the director of Cannes Festival hjas ot say about that movie.
    its revoew for th american SW festival were fantastic!
    The reception of the movie is overwhelming.
    They all hope to can see Mel Gibsn in Cannes,a nd i9f it was in the competition it wil win the Palmes d’Or!
    All movie reviews with enough seriousneess to actialy see the mpoive befroe taling about it, have aclaimed it and declared it was in for 2 oscras, one for directign and one for best acting for Mel Gibson!
    Your posts are baised and your article is cynical and hatefull, and has nothing to do wiht reality.
    It simpy reflect oyur dark imaginary, and yoru inner fears.
    You do worse than judging a book by its cover, you lie about its contain.
    Do you do the same about the Bible?
    Did oyu read the New testament before judging it negativly?
    Are you sure?

    i said it earlier, and i say it again: SHAME ON YOU!

  • Now who can possibly argue with that? (Although it is more convincing in the original crayon.)

  • Sophie, need to work on that spelcheker. Leave it to beaver to start a flame war.

  • I like Sound of Music.

    I don’t expect to make it to Mel “What are you looking at, Suger T**” Gibson’s latest.

  • Man we really to tighten up that spam filter.

  • Sophie, “All Mel Gibsons movie are fantastic”

    Even Signs? Really?

  • Oh, I let that one go through Paul. Sophie had obviously expended a lot of energy, not to mention spittle, in the preparation of it, and it seemed to be less than generous not to share it with the world! 🙂

  • DEFINE SPAM. TO YOURSELF.

  • As a Navy vet I take umbrage at any criticism of that venerable meat product.

  • Her oeuvre is almost poetic, really. The ambiguity ensures that you could mine it for hours and come up with different possible meanings each time.

    In the meantime, I’ll be defining spam to myself.

  • Actually, RR, I kind of liked Signs. Considering how awful every subsequent M Night movie has been, it almost qualifies as a masterpiece in comparison.

  • Ransom wasn’t bad either.

  • Hey, I liked Signs!

    . . .and SPAM is awesome, it’s the official “meat” of Hawaii!

  • Don – I get it. But I am still hopful that Mel with see his name is written on the back of his belt – someday. (Old Military folks will get that). I will not see this movie and the reason is two old – not interested and I want to see some kind of change in Mr. Gibson before I support one his movies again. As far as his work – i have always been a fan. We were soldiers was a great film IMHO. But I will pray for mel – again tonight. I love this website and the comments from everyone. God Bless.

  • Thank you Robert. I enjoyed We Were Soldiers Once, a gripping retelling of the battle of the Ia Drang in the Vietnam War.

    In regard to Signs, I have to confess to enjoying it, but only as a comedy. The scene where Gibson comes home and sees that his kids and his brother have donned tin foil hats has to be one of the most screamingly funny bits in an American film in many a year.

  • Oh, and I liked “Signs,” too. A reasonably effective spiritual thriller, almost (but not quite) derailed by the achilles heel of the bad guys. Still, that was the warning sign of much worse to come from MNS.

  • Roger Ebert couldn’t quite get his thumbs up on Beaver, gave it 2 1/2 stars, said he was constantly reminded of Señor Wences.

  • By the way, Ebert gave Signs 4 stars. Go figure.

  • I think that Mel Gibson is a fine actor and director. His skills in this area have historically been very underestimated. He also, unfortunately, clearly has mental health and substance abuse issues that have not been properly addressed. Both of these illnesses are progressive in nature and without intervention, his mental state and health will both deteriorate. We need to pray for this man.

    Aside from the above, I believe that a movie can be successfull with a good premise. People want to go to the movies to escape reality and to be brought into lives that are not theirs for a couple of hours. That being said, I doubt that this movie, even with a less notorious lead actor, would probably make more box office receipts than most other “indie” moves – not much. The topic does not appeal to most people, such as the premise of the movie “Lars and the Real Girl”, which although good, never made much money at the theaters.

    Couple this unpopular topic with an (albeit fine) actor who obviously has severe mental health issues, and you have a stinker. Most people do not want to pay 10+ dollars to see a mentally ill man play another mentally ill man who indulges his mental illness through a dissasosiative proxy (hand puppet).

  • BTW. Does anyone have the decoder ring for Sophie’s comment? It’s illegible.

  • I’d rather see a Lethal Weapon 5.

  • Apocalypto, anyone?

  • I actually enjoyed Apocalypto, not as much as Signs, but it was OK.

  • Apocalypto was a fine film.

  • NOPE i didnt prepared a sh.it i wrote as i thought directly with no correction, ad very fast too.
    I am not lke oyu, I can think on my own.
    I am glad ot see i shut oyu up.
    No contra argumentation coming form your side, only personal atakcs, whihc is the prove that i won the argumentation.
    When the oposit part cant argue agaisnt oyu, they ressort to personal attacks.

    I didn tused much energy nor preparation at all. iot took me the time to type it, and i type very fast.

    Joe Green, its clal Spell checker and not spelchecker..
    and i have never used one in my life.
    But we all can se that yours is not working or that you are the one in need to work on yours..
    dont thorw stones when oyu live in a glass house..

    Kurt. mel Gibson NEVER said “sugar tits” to any woman in his life.
    As Mle Gibson stgated in ferbuary 2009, at the kjjimmy kimiel show, (on youtube) he never said it it was attributed ot him buit was a lie, and as can be verificated in the internal affair police report on the police station, publicly published in february 2009, and mentioend in 2 newspapers, Mel Gibson never called any female officer for “sugar tits”, it was the arresting officer James Mee, who used ot clal ALL female officers at the station for “sugar tits” and on a daily basis whihc got him lot of comlian for sexual harrassemnt since a very long time and severla warnings by his superior, about bereaking other police rules too, and made him in seriosu conflict wiht his boss. he wasnt promoted for 15 eyars and had been fried form 2 police stgations prior ot coming ot LA..
    It was most obviously as a revenge to hsi superior, that he knew were in good terms wiht Mel gibson, who genrously contributed finacialy to the staton to, that he arested, in solo, agaistn police procedure, and did a car chasse, when he was officialy ouit of duty that night, just to can arest Mle gibson that he was taging for his stunt since a while, and then was ocntactged by harvey levi, by phone, privatly and at the station, on his celphone and at his phone at home, as the police koreport show, to make up a DUI report with stuff about Mel gibsn that harvey levi form tmz could use to make a scoop.
    The entire stuff was a fake, it doesnt mention the name of mel gibsonanywhrre as oyu can still see it at TMNZ, as it wil have represented a legal danger to TMZ if it had been foudn out that it was a fake, and ahervey as a lawyer knew so.
    that report cointain stuff that this polcie officer often say himself but that he put in the moughth of mle gibson. beside the fact of coure, that nobody in police history, ever wrote down what a guy arested for DUI ever said durign his arrest..
    the fake report also mention a temtative to escape, form Mel Gibson which is fauklse and nevr occured. mel Gibson was never charged for it whihc he wil have been oif htis had take palce as its a felony.
    the report alos state that mel gibson was angry, and shouting alos when he came ot the station and while being interfogated.
    well an officer filemd mel gibosn arrival at the station and shwo him very quiet, low profile, and saying helo to a police officer and oyu can hear that he was very polite and never said sugartits whihc was alos confirmed by both feale police officer at the station and make who often heard jamees mee call the women for sugar tits there, and had went into fight with soem of his collegues because of that.
    A secodn police officer took a video of Mle Gibson when he made his declaration and here oto mel gibson was very quiet and politge.
    TYhere was a third video, in the cell, as there is cams in al celss, but that is no longer avialable as it is regulary deleeted unless they need to for something specific, and thats of course that one that james mee aledged prove tha tmel gibson was mad and angry and so on, and aledged in his new lawsuite agianst the state of california ofr antisemitism (against CA!! LOL) contained proves tha tMle Gibson behaved as he did. Og course he waited 4 years to claim that video.. knowing it was gone since a long time.

    Harvey Levi also stated in an interview in Novemwebr 2009, that the whole story was a hoax, and that he was about to close TMZ and needed a scoop fast, so he contacted james mee to get one..
    So that hoax of pseudo antisemitc sentence saved harvety levi and TMZ form bankruptcy.
    In the immediate months after it, in 2006, TMZ was bought by Warner Bros and harvey levi confessed in that interview in november 2009, that he was stil living in the aftermath of it and enjoying the gush of visits that story gave him, but that he will not redo that kind of things as he wanted to make a more serious tabloid website.
    Ironicaly that interview didnt recieved much echo in the other media and one can only ask why..
    The same goes for the internal affair report that Mel Gibson never said sugar tits but that it was a typical expression of the arresting officer james Mee, whihc pretty much sign his report to TMZ as well as prove that he was the source.
    Same goes with the source to the recordings endingin radar online we all know its that russian grifter but none theless its left unpunished, In both case a felony.
    and in both case a tampered criminal evidence.
    Mel Gibson had already been stmapled as antisemite since he made the passion of the Christ, so it was easy fro a tablod ot have that story pass for a real story. Alan Nierob recommanded ot Mle Gibson ot apologise publicly about it and ot dont mention that he never said it as it wil only make matter worse.
    It didnt helped much since 95% of the psots about it on the internet as wella s articles form journalists mention it without refereing to his excuses even mentioneing that he never apologize and that if he had done so it wil be much better…
    Ignorance prevailed.
    Mel Gibson stated in an interview with REubin in ferbuary 2010, together with Winston, while promoting Edge of Darkness, that he never refered to jewws while he was arrested, and added “those rants who were attrributed ot me but that i never made”. hallas, instead to be quoted on this, and for that journalist instead to try to depen the interview on what Mle gibso jsut stated and who was a scoop as the very first time that Mel Gibson publicly declared that he had never made any antisemitic comets when he was arrested, that journalist and all the othe rmedia after hm, chsoe to make an extravagant scoop of that interview titled “do oyu have a dog in this fight?” and that all wil remember for that and not for the korte important stuff that transpired and were nveiled in that interview.
    and this thus the fact that the entire segemnt of that interview was largely publicised n al tv network and on youtube.
    Talking of blindness and refusing to see whats in front of them!

    So the sugar tits story as wel as the pseudo rant about jews were both made up and a lie, an hoax that profited their maker, the officer who got his revenge on his superiors, and ahrvey levi who saved his business, received national recognition, and got a very lucrative deal with warner bros as wel a a TV chanel (!!!) and the applause of the jewish comunity as wella s any detracotr of Mel Gibson and still does.
    At the exception perhaps of the owner of radar online who also field for bankrupcy last year, witht he consequneces we know on Mle Gibsons personal life.. becomig very public with edited and tampered fake digital recordings, of which nobody, not even oksanas lawyers, ahve seen the roiginal off.. but we can assure wiht confidence that boith her and her lover jimmy hoyson, audio engeneer, with her on the 18, 19 and 20 of february when those recofdings took place, heard the originals before they transforimed them.
    Jimmy Hoyson told in his declaration to the police in spetemebr 2010, that he was wiht oksan in february 19 and 20 2010.. which the date of the recording on oksanas computer, available on TMZ, show that they were made on those dates..
    whic alos imply that she couldnt be in fear ofr her life since she wasnt alone when she made them, and that she therefor had no legal rigths to recortd those phone convrsation, but she wasnt arrested nor charged for felony.

    Donald, its not called “expended” but “spend”.
    To expend is something else, like the expension of the universe.

    To dont let oyu feel like marthyrs being preached agaisn toyur will, i wil add that Mle Gibson is not the father of Lucia, the child that was attributed ot him,and thsat Oksana is ntits mother either, but that the child was bought in ukriane and imported to california in best human traficking manner, and that urkiane is known by all speical agencyies in the world working agaisnt human trafiking, like the federal bureau of invesitgation, and its plice dptmt in the Major Crime Bureau (MCB) who also invesitgsate Mel Gibson’s case form july to december 2010, as being the country who export the most babies towards western contries, and the most specialiosed in it.
    We wil alos notice that oksanas sudden interest in thcernobyls orphanges ocured right after the aledged birth of lucia by her and that the childs was alegedly born 1½ month to ealry, yet looked like a normal 1 monht child when it was 4 days old..
    and that oksana ttraveled solo to london on novmwbr 5 2009, less than 5 days after having alegedly given birth, to give an interview ot an unknown russian tv chanel.
    At that time she had no nany and at that time her mother ahd not yety landed in CA but was stillin russia
    yet, in a phone interview oksana gave to the pravda in decemebr 2009, she hapend to confess that her moter was at ehr place since ocotber 15, 2009, 2 weeks before the aledged birth who formher wn word occured unexpectedly and suddendly and wasnt expected before mid ot end of decemebr.
    her due dates alos changed a lot during al her fake pregnacy, as wel as after her staged birth.
    Which is more peculiar.

    You can expect a decalraton from Mel Gibson very soon on that matter.
    He already told in his first interview since this case started, given to Deadline, that he had many legal matters still pending, and that it will all come clear to all very soon what really happened.

    RR. Sign was a very good movie and we can only blame nick shamalan for being such a screwed up director with a chldhod childish dream that he wished to make real in a perfect danish instructor’s style of DOGMA film. Tho less succesfully than Thomas Vinterberg and Lars Von Trier

    Sign was a major economical succes world wide, and a newbie in his genre of makng a sci fi wihtout special effects. More realistic and closer to home.
    I will say he used more of the Hitchcok way to create tension and fear by using the audience own imagination and showing vdery little of the creatures.
    Oh and witha antihero as leaidng role who do not save Earth at all, but his soul and his fanily.
    An Ante-Matrix.

  • christine ilegible do not exist

    you ment to say illisible? LOL

  • Night at the movies with popcorn: $20
    Laptop: $400
    Postings by Sophie: Priceless

  • christine, who told oyu that Mel Gibsons alcohl abuse and mental health have not been properly adressed nro treated??
    your little finger maybe??

    Mle Gibson dont have drink since 2006, and undergo AA meetings and checks ofr 3 years after his arest. As for mentla issues, he sees sepcialists since his 30’es.. so oy know.
    is under treatmenet since 2009 and see a shrinks too since 209, which proves that he was better off untreated!!
    or that he do not have anything worng and oyu know the sayiong, dont try to fic what aint broken!
    his helath certianly deteriotrated and so wil yours if you were under cosntant stress and heavy one, ofr years and had alos ot dela wiht hwavy critixcism and beign ot fel paranod while the critcism often unjustified increase..
    same oges ofr public internviews serioes, rigth as he was being blakcmaild and extorted by that russian grifter.. ba timing or mayeb done in purpose
    ade him look washed out and dead stressed in al interviews, fearign the next quesiton, asif they were goig ot ask him about the tpaes any time or like oksa was goig to release it next day…
    i speka of winter and spring 2010..
    he was living wiht a gun on his head hold by that woman.
    and 2009 wasnt beter either in that regard.

    I disagree about what oyu think what poeple want to se.
    or not
    the life sotry of Stephen Hawkin was alos about a disabled man it was a success.
    de niro alos played a mentaly diabld man sufferign form a selfdom disease whose cure was yet to be found.. it was a succes.

    i certainly donot appreciate that oy refer t Mister Mel Gibos as a mentaly ill man!!
    who are you? his doc??
    Nor the tune oyu emply an dconvey when refering to mental disease.. I supose that using the word retard is not out of oyur vocabulary?

    Scuse me but that kind of statement chock me and offend me.
    Maybe you should go see “Mifunes last song”.
    Mel Gibson is fine, and if you eman he is mentaly ill, then better be as him, than thining as you do, and as so many poeple think, and who seems to becoem the normality in society thus its totaly sick!
    When to behave crazy has becoe the normality you know what that mean? that normal people are stampled as sick.

    So i hope that I am as mentaly ill, and retard, and crazy as Mel Gibson.
    This way only I am Blessed!

  • Joe Green, who said i was priceless?
    😉
    Dont take yoru understanding so cheap.
    I dont warranty i can cure you, I say i have already done it.

  • “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”

    –George Bernard Shaw.

    A man yelled frantically into the phone, “My wife is pregnant and her contractions are only two minutes apart!”

    “Is this her first child?” the doctor asked.

    “No!” the man shouted, “This is her husband!”

  • Mat Mle will have ot work on his little Weapon to can make a new Lethal one..
    the rigths of the franchise are i the hands of Warenr Bros, who id darn after Mle Gibsons butt since he cut the ombilical rope wiht them an dmade TPOC solo.. they never came ofver it. went banan whne he bought icon distribution in august 2008, tha threy had their friend lev, russian bilionaire, to buy him bakc in novemebr 07, 2009, 7 days after the fake baby birth, and 2 days after oksanas solo trip wihtout premature-baby-with-her, to London for unknown reasons.. mayeb to pay soem mroe to the guts who came wiht that baby..

    making a new one means little money to him comapre ot how much warner will be able to harvest form it alone
    and since they love tmz and eonline tha thtey own to, and hwo have been bashig mel gibson and broight in apiedestal oksana, since 20o9, he isnt going to bend over.
    thats the alone reason why thee is no lethla weapon 5.
    Mle would like , Richard Donner beg on his knees to get it every 5 ot 6 months, but WB want its cake and eat it.
    Give it a few and it will come.
    made by Icon 😀

  • Dale, stick to spam! BAHAHAH!!

    shawn is an overated idiot.

    communication depend of wach peros levelof develop,ment and background and knolwedgre and of course culture.

    it also depend on the wether, the season, Mercury, and wether or not your on the rag, or cheating oyur wife.
    Beside that, all is fine.

  • If you look up the word “illegible”, not “ilegible”, you will find the definition.

    Also, sometimes you can just tell a person isn’t right in the head by the way they communicate – in verbal and in written forms. I’ll pray for you as well. It seems to me that you are vehemently, and unfortunatly, illegibly, defending a man you don’t know.

    You perhaps need to see a mental health professional as well. Take care, and try not to take these blogs so deadly serious. It would also help you if you would slow down a bit, so that others could understand you. God willing, when you speak to a mental health professional, please show them your comments this blog, because there is a mania to your communication style. This can be helped with counseling and medication.

  • All things will be produced in superior quantity and quality, and with greater ease, when each man works at a single occupation, in accordance with his natural gifts, and at the right moment, without meddling with anything else.

    And what, Socrates, is the food of the soul? Surely, I said, knowledge is the food of the soul.

    Entire ignorance is not so terrible or extreme an evil, and is far from being the greatest of all; too much cleverness and too much learning, accompanied with ill bringing-up, are far more fatal.

    Excess generally causes reaction, and produces a change in the opposite direction, whether it be in the seasons, or in individuals, or in governments.
    Excess of liberty, whether it lies in state or individuals, seems only to pass into excess of slavery.

    For a man to conquer himself is the first and noblest of all victories. Good nurture and education implant good constitutions.

  • “You perhaps need to see a mental health professional as well. Take care, and try not to take these blogs so deadly serious. It would also help you if you would slow down a bit, so that others could understand you. God willing, when you speak to a mental health professional, please show them your comments this blog, because there is a mania to your communication style. This can be helped with counseling and medication.”

    Christine raises a good point, one I hadn’t considered. As a result, that is the end of the Sophie show. I found her posts amusing, but if they are evidence of some sort of mental problem, than it would be cruel to post anymore of them, and so I will not.

  • Aw, crud–I was going to post even more quotes from Greek philosophers to see if Sophie would call them “overrated idiots.”

  • Sorry to ruin your fun Dale. The posts made me worry about her.

  • You may be correct, Christine. I guess I’ve seen so much strange behavior online that it’s increasingly hard to tell. My impression of her was that she was an unusually obsessive fan who did not have English as a first language.

    But it’s certainly better to err on the side of caution.

  • Hey Don.

    You should invite Sophie Sweetheart to be a guest poster -in the comedy section.
    Her comments are hilarious – but obviously spoken from the heart. 🙂

  • I don’t think I have to watch the movie to be entertained . . . these posts are entertaining enough!

  • Haha! Ouch my brain is huting time to get back to work. Now where is my secret decoder ring….

  • Pingback: This Explains a Lot about Hollywood | The American Catholic
  • Donald;

    Do you need to see a XXX rated film to know it is junk?

    I think there is no need to watch to know it is junk.

    Can you review a XXX rate film without seeing it?

    I think so. You know the plot and the major themes of the story so what else is needed? Trash is trash no matter who stars in it.

  • Donald
    It was very disappointing your sarcasm about Mel.
    He has given a heroic legacy for Catholic media with the Passion of the Christ
    for which we should all be eternally grateful to him for.

    Anyone with the gifts he has, including faith, will be attacked by powers and principalities. As for me, I ask everyone to join me and pray for his healing.

  • A good act does not excuse future sin PC, neither does a great film excuse an abysmally bad one. Mel is a public figure who made what I consider to be a very poor film. Public criticism goes with living a life in the limelight as Mel “Beaver” Gibson has chosen to do. By all means pray for Mel, although I think he could also use a good swift kick in the hind end.