6 Responses to John Cleese, Benjamin Franklin, CS Lewis and Extremism

  • John Cleese, Ben Franklin, C.S. Lewis and the idea of extreme moderation:
    There’s something in this at the end of the day, after the great initial morning amusement of the three pieces. I would like the sound of saying that I am a Moderate and have that political affiliation – as John Cleese(!) said moderates are on the end of both sides, wise old Ben Franklin called himself an extreme one (was that after the electricity?), and Screwtape railed at diversion to values higher than the self. America could have candidates for election appealing to Moderates for whom truth, justice, prudent fiscal management, and virtues (value of ideas beyond civilized rhetoric) exceed agendas of special interests.

  • These days, moderation as a political philosophy isn’t going to work in our society. What we call “conservatism” and “liberalism” prescind from views of human nature that involve radically differing assumptions and are mutually incompatible. Trying to build a “moderate” political philosophy is like trying to construct a building using two different floorplans. You might end up with a building, but it’s not likely to be very stable nor very useful.

  • You raise a good point, Jonathan. The liberal and conservative labels are just that; labels. I’m reminded here of how words don’t really have fixed meanings. And the meanings ascribed to them change, too. I prefer to think in terms of biblical categories. One question I might ask is “What ought we to do in light of Scripture?” Or “What would Jesus do?” assuming we of course take into account our place within the narrative of God.

  • Incidentally, I’d like to raise another idea that Lewis bequethed. The “eternal now” which he used ot describe God’s vantage point in relation to us. Lewis spoke of God as beyond time. It’s as though everything is simultaneous to him. That ought to be of great assistance to those who’ve spent their time problematizing the paradox of God’s sovereignty and our free-will. I would recommend Dr. Richard Land to anyone who’s interested in that application.

  • Moderation in all things, except charity and virtue.

  • 8/18 11:40 – “These days, moderation as a political philosophy isn’t going to work in our society. What we call “conservatism” and “liberalism” prescind from views of human nature that involve radically differing assumptions and are mutually incompatible.”

    Politics have pretty well brought our society beyond the realm of possibilities for moderate activity due to prescinding. How many zeroes in trillion? How can politicians redefine life and God’s place in ours? Moderate charity and moderate virtue led to this outrageous state of affairs, not moderate lawmakers. I guess I was impressed by the graphics of moderates (having a common outlook set apart from the caricatures) in the John Cleese clip, and especially by Ben Franklin happily proclaiming himself an extreme moderate at the time to the ‘boys’ from Massachusetts for what they accomplished.

    A return to being a civilization enriched by holy values, rather than impoverished by outlawing them is due. Extremely civilized debating in government circles minus the bad joking could accomplish something for this nation.

Cross & Eagle Catholic Blogging Award for Best Author Pseudonym

Wednesday, August 17, AD 2011

The Cross & Eagle Awards (C&EA) aren’t your run-of-the-mill awards with standard categories and predictable results.  Not that all C&EA’s will be off-beat, but that some names, or pseudonym in this instance, in the Catholic Blogosphere are just so unforgettable, they need a category to themselves.

This next winner is just that, pretty unforgettable, genuine, and unique.

This 15th Century Hussite romantic is the Master of Ceremonies for his parish as well as the liturgy editor of a crusading blog, that frankly has stopped blogging (but only recently).  Nonetheless, his name deserves recognition because I can’t imagine anyone else ever making up this pseudonym.

His attention to detail may well explain his love of protocol in all things liturgical.

So without further delay:

I am happy to present the 2011 Cross & Eagle Award for the Best Pseudonym in the Catholic Blogosphere to. . .

Continue reading...

2 Responses to Cross & Eagle Catholic Blogging Award for Best Author Pseudonym

Waiting for Superman

Wednesday, August 17, AD 2011

Well, when Michelle Bachmann promises something she really shoots for the moon.

At a town hall meeting in Greenville, S.C., today, Michele Bachmann said if she became president gas prices would fall dramatically.

“Under President Bachmann you will see gasoline come down below $2 per gallon again. That will happen,” Bachmann said, according to The Hill.

There’s no word on whether she added that that the rise of the oceans would begin to slow as well.

Certainly there are things that the federal government could do to help cut gas prices.  Lowering gasoline taxes, opening up more areas for drilling and cutting back on regulations might put a dent on gas prices, but these measures would only go so far.  Oil is a global commodity.  Or, to quote from one of the snarky commenters at NRO, what is she going to, make the Chinese stop consuming oil?

Daniel Foster also helps put her comments into perspective.

The only policies I can think of that would surely accomplish the $2.00 a gallon target are:

1) The seizure by force and nationalized exploitation of a large proportion of the world’s oil supply.

2) The massive federal subsidization of fuel costs.

3) The fomenting of a second global recession as bad as or worse than the last one, complete with negative global GDP growth.

Gas prices could fall below $2 per gallon were Bachmann to get elected, but it would not principally be due to policy measures of the government.

This sort of political messiahnism is an annoying trend in our politics, but it’s doubly depressing coming from a conservative.  It’s one thing for a leftist like Barack Obama to promise the sun, the moon, and the stars, but one would not expect such unrealistic promises from someone touting themselves to be a limited government conservative.

Unfortunately this lack of perspective on the office of the presidency and the powers within that office runs both ways.  

Continue reading...

24 Responses to Waiting for Superman

  • Is a pro-lifer who doesn’t reject 10-to-1 cuts-to-revenue really too much to ask? Thing is there are plenty of bloggers who fit the bill. Just no presidential candidates. Shouldn’t I expect at least as much from my president as I expect from bloggers?

  • “Shouldn’t I expect at least as much from my president as I expect from bloggers?”

    Beats me as to why RR. I expect things from bloggers that I would never expect from Presidents and vice versa. In regard to revenue I think the term you are really searching for is “taxes” as almost all “revenue” received by government consists of good old fashioned taxes. Any candidate who pledges never to use “revenues” when he means “taxes” will at least earn a thumbs up from me.

    In regard to Bachmann, she needs to learn that every misstatement she makes will reach a national audience. As to the substance of her claim, I doubt it is possible. However, I have no doubt that if all restrictions in regard to drilling were lifted in the continental US that prices might well decline, at least initially.

  • However, I have no doubt that if all restrictions in regard to drilling were lifted in the continental US that prices might well decline, at least initially.

    Undoubtedly, though perhaps not for a long time and not by the amount needed to get us below $2. Regardless, I’d favor removing these restrictions.

  • Removing all EPA restrictions in regard to gasoline mixtures might have a downward impact on price. Bachmann, or any candidate, could gain quite a bit of voter enthusiasm by simply noting the various ways in which government regulations increase the cost of gasoline at the pump.

  • Too many politicians and their staffs miss opportunities by simply going with a dramatic tag line instead of doing basic research and providing a list of policy recommendations that could grab voter support. In our soundbite age I think they underestimate too many voters.

  • President Bachmann cannot possibly make things worse than would Obama with four more years.

    Four more years!!! Obama has not finished us, yet.

  • I think part of Obama’s issue lies in the fact that he’s so intelligent. I obviously don’t mean wise. I mean intelligent. And when you’re like that, you think and talk till the cows come home, and you believe every word you say. Intelligent (and not so intelligent) people believe you, too. Those who are wise don’t.

  • France is a very intelligent country.

  • There are real things we can do to reduce consumption of petroleum products, though $2.00 per gallon is very unlikely. Furthermore, I don’t think that Bachmann has considered these things.

    Convert all rail road transportation to electric and use nucler power plants to provide the electricity,
    Convert all major cargo shipping to nuclear – precedence has been set with 10 nuclear powered air craft carriers and 40 nuclear powered submarines

    True, these measures would reduce diesel vice gasoline consumption, but it’s a start.

    And yes, France is intelligent with 70+ % electricity from nuclear and the lowest electricity prices in Europe. The Iralians de-nukes themselves after Chernobyl. Now they import their electricity from nuclear France.

    Furthermore, nuclear energy can be used to provide the heat necessary to make liquid fuels from coal via the Fischer-Tropsch process. The process isn’t all that efficent or cost effective right now, but that’s because we constrain the cost of the heat source to make drilling in the ground in lands of Islamic fascism so much more attractive.

    BTW, the US actually gets most of its imports of oil from Canada. This frees up Islamic oil for Europe. Who gets rich? Govt politicians on oil taxes and the sultans intent on our destruction. But really, we could generate our own oil or even move away from a fossil fuel based economy. How about boron for combustion:

    http://www.eagle.ca/~gcowan/235_248.pdf

    Use nuclear electricity to provide de-oxidized boron. It can be done. Graham R.L. Cowan proposed this idea at a pro-nuclear power Yahoo message board more than a decade ago. He wrote the article linked above for the International Journal of Nuclear Hydrogen Production and Applications, Volume 1, Number 3, 2008. And yes, obviously the article is a serious one with lots of chemical equations and calculations for the detractor.

    I am always amused when philosophers and theologians and especially politicians (left or right) start talking about energy. Here’s the basic rule: energy and matter can neither be created nor destroyed, only interchanged. Start there. Then when you use the facts you’ll see high oil and gas prices are caused by us and are entirely artificially created through greed. Do you really think the oil companies would like to see Graham Cowan’s idea succeed?

  • pat,

    Can you provide evidence of 0 intelligence?

    I agree he is not wise. Nor is he charitable, experienced, hard-working, knowledgeable, honest, or skilled in anything except glibly shilling this ruinous “three-card monte” game/Ponzi scheme. He is not a leader. A leader would not divide we the people into hate-filled factions (figuratively) clawing at each other.

    One of our biggest national problem is the millions of terrorists (clueless academics, “intellectual/obama conservatives”, gov union thugs, looters, moochers) that think 0 is “so intelligent.”

    PS, That 0 above is not “O.”

  • Mrs. Bachmann and her husband are a remarkable pair of dynamos. That having been said, she seems to lack a sense of the relationship between acts and consequences. She seems to think that consequences are what you wish for and not things you have to investigate and understand.

    If we were to finance road construction and maintenance out of gasoline excises and auto registration fees, these assessments would have to be a great deal higher – by a factor of about 7. The retail price of gasoline is not unreasonable, all things considered.

    If Bachmann wants to be a leader, she might tell her audience that the relative prices of various goods and services fluctuate in a market economy and that as long as overall levels of production and income are not declining, there is no point in complaining unless the price dynamics are a function of monopoly power or deficient public policy.

  • Couldn’t have said it better myself. There is no such thing as a political savior, and even the real Savior refused to be one for His followers who were hoping he’d overthrow the Romans and reestablish the Davidic dynasty. I know a lot of people don’t like the idea of voting for the lesser of two evils, but to be honest, I think that’s probably the best criteria to use… Don’t go looking for someone who will save the world and solve all our problems; just find the one who is likely to cause the least damage.

  • Gasoline was $2/gallon just 2.5 years ago. A double-dip recession is not inconceivable.

    “Under President Bachmann you will see gasoline come down below $2 per gallon again. That will happen.”

    I have no doubt because she will foment “a second global recession as bad as or worse than the last one, complete with negative global GDP growth.”

  • RR: You mean the Third Global Recession in 2013.

    The world is entering Global Recession II at this moment and, FYI, three follows two.

    We now know the Zero. Tele-Prompter-in-Chief will loquaciously aver, “It wasn’t me!” and, “We need to spend more!”

    Bachmann caused Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain to borrow more than they will ever be able to repay. Only way out: troubled debt restrucure wherein the owners of debt securities are repaid less and get it later than contract.

    Bachmann caused the German economy to stop growing.

    Bachmann caused the ECU to decline to issue one-Euro bonds.

    Bachmann is telling the Chinese how to destroy their economy.

    Ach du leiber! Michelle has global clout!

  • Another way would be to put the dollar on the gold standard. But then that $2.00 tied to gold would be the equivalent of about $10 of today (if not more). So nominally, yes, gas would be $2.00 a gallon (maybe less). But it would feel like $20 a galllon (or more).

  • I remember a Saturday Night Live skit fromt he late ’70s (when it was at least marginally funny). Dan Akroyd was playing Jimmy Carter, and gave a talk on how to cure inflation. The plan was to print lots of money and give it to everyone so that, even if prices rose, we’d all be millionaires and could afford it.

    What is the difference between that plan and quantitative easing?

    Rather than giving the money to everyone, it’s only given to a few well connected?

  • c matt, the difference is that we have no inflation right now.

  • What I meant to get at is that there’s a difference between intelligence and wisdom. Obama is very intelligent. Sometimes I think that gets in the way of real wisdom. Intelligence is just that. It’s like an I.Q. that’s just been measured. All it tells you is capacity. It doesn’t tell you whether it’s used in the right way. I think people often mistake the one for the other. I.Q. tells you nothing about a person’s morality, their common sense, their wisdom, or their actions toward other human beings or God. It simply measures your intelligence. Now what you do with it is a very different matter.

  • We’re finding out that there’s a lot more to what makes a person than I.Q. There’s their spiritual aptitude, as one might call it. Then there’s simply their spiritual state. Are you saved or not? Etc. You get the point.

  • “. . . we have no inflation now.”

    We have no jobs now.

    We have no money now.

    We have Obama’s inflated ego. He’s pushing on us his far-left ideology and fundamentally changing America for the worse.

  • I’m old enough to remember how quickly and how far the price of gasoline fell after President Reagan let the Carter-era price controls on gasoline and so-called windfall profits tax on domestic oil production lapse. The media’s talking heads and editorial-page scribblers predicted, of course, the result would be nothing but woe for the American consumer and huge profits for the oil companies who’d gouge them. None of the talkers and scribblers apologized afterward for (a) their errors nor (b) their calumnies.

    With both the practical example of history and the theory of the free market to support her contention, I’m confident Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann is correct. If she is elected President and has a co-operative Congress (instead of the Pelosi-Reid led bodies of Democrat obstructionist bodies President Bush ended his term with), she could act to restore a free market to production and supply of gasoline and this would dramatically lower prices at the pump.

  • Question: is government a business–and/ or should it be run that way? just wondering. Not quite the econnomics or political science type, but would like to hear from someone.

Universal Salvation and Probability

Wednesday, August 17, AD 2011

Every so often, another Catholic encourages me to “dare to hope that all are saved”. After all, it is not a matter of doctrine that any specific person is damned. We know that God’s mercy is great, and given God’s mercy and our beliefs about the bliss of heaven and the torment which is hell, it seems reasonable that any soul would choose to embrace God over separating himself permanently from Him.

For me, this idea seems to fall down, however, when applied to the whole of humanity. In a sense, it’s a lot like the issue of the probability of sinlessness which I wrote about briefly a while ago: Given that we have free will, it would seem that in any given situation we could choose to do the right thing — though obviously we in many cases feel a strong urge not to or don’t even have a clear understanding of what the right thing is. However paradoxically, while in every individual choice it would seem that we could choose not to sin, it seems like an impossibility that any one person would in fact make the right choice in every single circumstance, thus living a life entirely without sin (except for original sin.)

Similarly, it seems to me that while there’s clearly a chance that any given person, no matter how sinful, will repent before death, embrace God’s forgiveness, and be saved, I simply can’t imagine it as possible that every single person in the history of humanity would do so. We see people so very frequently, in ordinary life, actively choose to do thing which they know will make them unhappy out of anger, pride or even just habit — I just don’t find it persuasive that no one would ever have chosen to utterly refuse union with God and insist that he would “rather rule in hell and serve in heaven.”

So I do not hope that all will be saved — I stick to hoping that each person will be saved.

Continue reading...

7 Responses to Universal Salvation and Probability

  • And to add to it, here’s from today’s Gospel:

    “But when the king came in to meet the guests
    he saw a man there not dressed in a wedding garment.
    He said to him, ‘My friend, how is it
    that you came in here without a wedding garment?’
    But he was reduced to silence.
    Then the king said to his attendants, ‘Bind his hands and feet,
    and cast him into the darkness outside,
    where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.’
    Many are invited, but few are chosen.”

  • Most of the arguments favor of ‘dare we hope…’ do seem to involve equivocating on the each/all distinction.

  • Another factor is the millions of bad individuals throughout history who were killed while trying to kill law enforcement whether we think of pirates or Pablo Escobar dying as he fought those trying to capture him in South America….after he killed thousands during his life time. “Dare we hope” is bizarre on the level of common sense. It would mean that all criminals dying throughout history in the act of sin, all child rapists/ murderers who were unrepentant…all adulterers dying in the act of sin, all those in Sodom who were killed by God, all false prophets killed by Elijah (450), Herod Antippas killed by God in Acts 12…..all these people either had defect in the act (sufficient reflection e.g.) or they were mentally ill or they with perfect sincerity thought their sin was
    virtue….which returns us to mental illness in most cases. Add to that the fact that such a theory deflates the missionary urge greatly. And if Christ’s words about Judas leave you thinking that Judas may be in heaven, then I want you doing my taxes next year.

  • Yes, the tenor of Scripture suggests that people will remain unconverted throughout eternity. Even up into the book of Revelation, there are those who remain “outside the gates.” I think we must come to terms with this. I don’t say they’re roasting and burning in a perpetual oven. But they do remain apart, and by choice. This is simply the picture given. Jesus said it. The apostles spoke it. This strain plays out to the end. Though the philosophic urge is toward synthesis, and our sentiments desire ultimate comedy for everyone, the tragic note remains. Those outside refused to enter in. So they remain there, in outer darkness and chaos.

  • Pingback: FRIDAY EVENING EDITION | ThePulp.it
  • Rob Bell, a theologian, recently wrote a book called Love Won Out. In it he argues for universal salvation. But I make the following point: Origin argued the same early on; he was knocked down for a good reason…the Bible never suggested such a thing, and in fact the gist of Scripture is that a portion of humanity remain unredeemed throughout eternity. That’s the reality we see in Scripture. Again, it’s not philisophically palatable. But it’s part of the story, the narrative of God and us.

  • It makes one feel good when you visualize that a Loving, Merciful God, will, in the end forgive even the worst sinners and admit them to Heaven. But as the respondents above state, the Scriptures, especially the chilling words of Jesus about Judas, shocks one into reality that the Road to Heaven is very, very narrow and only “a few” will find it and follow it upto its Destination.

TAC Presidential GOP Poll So Far

Wednesday, August 17, AD 2011

The American Catholic (TAC) GOP Poll is still accepting votes until this Friday evening.

Thus far former Pennsylvania U.S. Senator Rick Santorum is leading with 22% of the vote followed by Texas Governor Rick Perry with 19% of the vote.

Texas U.S. Representative Ron Paul follows with 13% of the vote with undecideds rounding the top four at 11%.

Top tier candidates Michele Bachmann is way back with 2% of the vote with Mitt Romney at 5% of the total vote.

Continue reading...

7 Responses to TAC Presidential GOP Poll So Far

  • Pingback: WEDNESDAY EVENING EDITION | ThePulp.it
  • In regards to the TAC Presidential GOP Poll, it would be interesting how many “Catholics” would still vote for Obama.

  • Santorum has to be one of the dumbest dudes God ever created!

    Diane Sawyer said the presidenial candidates spend millions on their campaigns adfvertising and looked into their campaignt T shirts The 3 major candidates had shirts made in the USA. Then she showed Gingrichs’ and it was foreign made and when asked it took him a few minutes and he figured it out and replied he’d get USA made shirts….then Ron Paul, took him a few minutes to think about his foreign made shirts and he decided to dispose of them all immediately and get USA made ones. A llittle slow those two but they got the idea. When she asked Rick Santorum… his response…it’s hard to find anything made in the USA, and hard as she tried couldn’t get him to think about it and give the right answer. And he’s running for President, just a little scary!!

  • I will not vote for a cafeteria Christian in name only Republican thug and thief… nor a godless Democrat thug and thief.

  • Fr. Leo Padget,

    That would be interesting.

    We’ll do a poll on that later in the year, just for the record!

  • So Rick Santorum is dumb because he was the only candidate in the exchange who didn’t pander?

  • Will gladly vote in the 2012 election for any of these candidates to replace Pres. Obama.
    Still depressed at times that our country would elect someone with his background and lack of experience. Especially troubling that so many Catholics could vote for someone who is more pro-abortion than NARAL.

August 17, 1861: Birth of the Army of the Potomac

Wednesday, August 17, AD 2011

On August 17, 1861 the Union military departments of the Shenandoah, Washington, and Northeastern Virginia were merged, and  the Army of the Potomac formed, the hard luck Army that experienced defeat after defeat until its great victory at Gettysburg, endured the meat grinder Overland Campaign of 1864 , carried out the siege of Petersburg of 1864-65 and ultimately triumphed with the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia at Appomatox.  Stephen Vincent Benet  in his epic poem John Brown’s Body  pays tribute to the Army:

Continue reading...

6 Responses to August 17, 1861: Birth of the Army of the Potomac

  • In terms of services rendered to and sacrifice for the nation, next to Nathanael Greene’s Continental Army in the Southern colonies, the AotP is easily the least-appreciated army in American history.

    A lot like Muhammad Ali, the boys in the Potomac could take a lot of punches but still remain standing. I’d argue its greatest victory was the Wilderness, when it kept advancing after absorbing a Chancellorsville-like hammer blow from the indomitable Marse Robert.

    In many ways, it was the mirror-image of the even more hard-luck CSA Army of Tennessee: brave men cursed with bad luck, worse timing and mostly indifferent-to-awful commanders.

    I’m glad Bruce Catton had a chance to talk with those Michigan Potomac vets growing up–his trilogy was brilliant.

  • These laid the world away; poured out the red
    Sweet wine of youth; gave up the years to be
    Of work and joy, and that unhoped serene,
    That men call age; and those who would have been,
    Their sons, they gave, their immortality.

    Blow, bugles, blow! — Rupert Brooke

    DP: Do you imagine Catton talked with some of Custer’s cavalry veterans? He/they were victorious from the third day at Gettysburg (beat J.E.B. Stuart) to Appomattox.

  • T. Shaw:

    Quite possibly so–I remember an intro to one of his books explaining how the AotP veterans who lived in his stretch of rural Michigan were the catalyst for his interest in the history of the War. It’s not impossible that at least one of them might have been one of Custer’s Wolverines.

    Good catch, too–not too many people remember the cavalry battle of the third day, and its significance. Though I don’t know that the Union cavalry was quite that dominant. Yellow Tavern and the thrashing of Dahlgren’s raid showed the Rebel cavalry was still pretty solid.

    The Union was lucky that Forrest wasn’t transferred to the East, I’ll say that. The Devil on Horseback was a menace until late March 1865, when he was finally defeated by a Union cavalry force that had learned all the lessons he’d taught them for three years.

  • Dale, I became forever entranced by Civil War history when I read in Junior High Catton’s: Mr. Lincoln’s Army, Glory Road and A Stillness at Appomattox.

  • DP: See if you can find in your library a book called Custer Victorious. I don’t have the author’s name here. I re-read it in the past year or so.

    Before Gettysburg Union infantry would taunt, “I never saw a dead cavalryman.” Until Sheridan and Custer, the Union infantry generals were (if that’s possible) worse than the infantry generals.

    Custer’s immediate (for a time) superior Kilpatrick, nicknamed Killcavalry, on several occasions nearly got Custer and his entire division killed or captured.

    Anyways, I’m eagerly awaiting Rick Atkinson’s third book on the ETO. I’m no judge, but the first two were (to me) excellent. This 7 December it will be 70 years . . .

  • T. Shaw:

    I’ll look it up–sounds good. Custer also had some pretty high casualties, but he led from the front, so the Wolverines didn’t grumble so much.

    In the West, James H. Wilson was the Union cavalry commander who finally digested all the “memos” Forrest sent the Yankees. His raid through the industrial centers of Alabama in 1865 was described by a modern historian as “the Yankee Blitzkrieg.” Even Forrest couldn’t stop him, though in fairness to the Confederate commander his forces were rag, tag and bobtail by that point.

Cross & Eagle Catholic Blogging Award for Most Beautiful Blog

Tuesday, August 16, AD 2011

When it comes to blogging, fortunately or unfortunately, how a blog looks plays an important role in attracting readers.  Yes, substantively written blogs do retain readers, but if you want to shoot fish in a barrel, you need a spiffy looking blog to fill up that barrel full of fish.

There are many well made and creative blogs out there, but striking the balance between color, pics, font, and layout is very tricky.  There are a few out there that do well in this department, though there is one that stands head and shoulders above the rest.

The 2011 Cross & Eagle Award for Most Beautiful Blog is none other than . . .

Continue reading...

8 Responses to Cross & Eagle Catholic Blogging Award for Most Beautiful Blog

The Wisdom of Deepak

Tuesday, August 16, AD 2011

Evidently Deepak Chopra has gone from writing insipid self-help schlock to becoming a political pundit.  He isn’t much better in his second career, but he is good for a laugh.

Chopra’s argument is that the President is doing the right thing by being a mature adult, rising above the partisan fray, refusing to engage in verbal warfare with the right.  No, seriously, he really believes this.

Continue reading...

48 Responses to The Wisdom of Deepak

  • What Deepak wrote is exactly the kind of treatment anyone on the right will get when trying to engage in “dailogue” with the left. It almost seems as though there are two intractable, irreconciliable sides in America today, and I suspect there really are.

    🙁

  • Deepak “that standing rebuke to all that is sentient” Chopra’s political philosophy was well summed up by Orwell in Animal Farm: “Four legs good! Two legs bad!”

  • Truth is lie. Lie is truth.

    A. B. Hinkle: “So far, none of those who call peaceful Tea Party activists terrorists have flung the same accusation at British rioters who have inflicted genuine terror.”
    Or, for that matter US Obama flash rioters.

    If Obama were a leader, he would have responded to Tea Party hecklers, “You are not ‘terrorists’.” Instead, your low-life-street-hustler-in-charge said, “I didn’t say they you is terrorists.”

    Anyhow, Dipchit is just another OWN: Obama Worshiping Nitwit.

  • Deepak Chopra was always off his rocker. But he went from spirituality to politics; he can continue his damage on a more practical level. The most central issue as I see it is that of sin. If sin is not recognized, people will seek out government for answers. If sin is recognized, they will fear government. The answers government gives assume that people are victims, not sinners. And victims are helplessly caught up in something they didn’t contribute to. Yet as sinners we are all a part of it. We must all take ownership for the mess we find ourselves in. We must accept that we are sinners and that God, not government, is the answer. Government is simply a structure made up of more people who are sinners just like us. And if their faith is in themselves and our faith as a people is in them, we will falter.

  • Really, Paul, was it necessary to consume valuable bandwidth for new-age kooks like Deepfried Chopra? Oh vey!

  • Ah, Deepak Chopra: the one Coast-to-Coast guest that is too strange for me to listen to….

  • Really, Paul, was it necessary to consume valuable bandwidth for new-age kooks like Deepfried Chopra? Oh vey!

    Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

  • (Digressing: the first time I heard of the fellow, the radio guy said it as “De-pack Oprah.” Had a mental association between the fellow and the TV host since….)

  • Well, a false prophet gives his stamp of approval to a political leviathan. What else is new? And he caused all to bow down to the image, great and small……sounds familiar. I think this has happened before.

  • It’s impossible for me to take someone seriously whose name sounds like a Thai restaurant dish.

  • thought it was deepfried okra–the vegetable

  • Ever since gthe Beatles, or Swami Vivikenanda at the World’s Fair in 1898, this business of Indian gurus advising us has been viewed as some kind of a rare treat.

  • Larry, lol. Then again, Barack Hussein Obama sounds like a Taliban leader.

  • We have a love affair with Indian visionaries. They appear unwashed and crazy, and we fall down at their feet and seek their wisdom.

  • pat, who can forget the Maharishi Yoga, who used to ride around in a Rolls Royce and became the symbol of the 60s counterculture by inveighing against materialism? Again, oh vey!

  • I meant Yogi, of course….I didn’t want to confuse him with Yogi Berra, who also was a great philosopher.

  • Yeah, these Indian guys have become a real celebrity. But they’ve gone from wild eyes and long matted hair to the corporate look.

  • Joe, don’t even confuse him with Yogi Bear, who’s smarter than the average yogi! LOL!

  • There was a time when I seriously investigated Eastern religions and actually read portions of the Baghadavita. But when I learned some Indian prime ministers were drinking their own urine, that kind of put a crimp into things, so to speak.

  • I’ve been told Ghandi did that. He drank his own urine. Just like that.

  • But Chopra’s gone corporate. He’s clean-cut, wears a suit, gets hair cuts, etc. He doesn’t look the part of the earlier guru. He was wild-eyed, with matted wavy hair, and usually let himself go all around. Chopra has a further reach, I think, because he’s Americanized in his appearance.

  • pat, apparently ignored signs that stated: “Void where prohibited” : )

  • Joe, if he had the audacity to do such a thing, he must have been just a little removed from reality. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that you don’t drink urine. It just doens’t take that much mental capability. Yet people look back on Ghandi as someone who had a lot of sense in his head. Lol.

  • I’ve read accounts of severely dehydrated POWs drinking sea water in desperation and even urine but both can be lethal.

  • This thread has gone in a very interesting direction.

  • Yes, but Ghandi wasn’t out of water. He should have known: urine was drunk; you don’t drink it.

  • Stream of consciousness, Paul?

  • Well, getting back to the subject, Chopra is a Maharishi gone corporate. People look East these days for advice. Either that or they turn on Dr. Phil. Christianity, on the other hand, requires an about face turn. Fortunately, with God all things are possible, which is why I believe that conversion is initiated by God.

  • For a nit wit new age pagan guru (is there any other kind?), Deepak Chopra certainly has garnered a lot of comments in the space of mere hours.

    So Ghandi drank his own urine? Mehercule!

  • Well yes, after Christianity, anything new is really old (in a new guise). Chopra’s philosophy is very old and stale. But people love him because such philsophy doens’t ask much. It doesn’t require much faith or effort or sacrifice. It’s rather comfortable like the Rolls Royce that Maharishi drove.

  • Reminds me of yet another Deepak Chopra political essay, which I addressed in this blog post: http://sonrisemorningshow.blogspot.com/2011/06/preachers-and-deep-ends.html (the title refers to his little missive coming out the same time that Fr. Corapi made his bizarre switch to being a sort of low-rent Glenn Beck). I did a lot of digging before I wrote that because it sounded more like a hoax than a real essay, but apparently he has written plenty just like it.

  • There is a Christian apologist named Ravi Zacharias. He’s argued against Eastern philosophies and points to their inconsistencies and failures. He does so in a convincing and throrough manner. I’d seriously recommend his site to anyone interested in why Christianity makes sense and how Eastern thought is in reality an absurd dead-end.

  • Intersetingly, Zacharias is an Indian by birth, and formerly an Eastern thinker. He knows its bankruptcy. I’d like to see Zacharias go head to head with Chopra.

  • Ravi Zacharias is a Protestant Evangelical. Obviously God is raising up sons to Abraham from the stones themselves. And I mean that sincerely and with all respect to Rev. Zacharias.

  • For the wind is in the palm-trees, and the temple-bells they say:
    “Come you back, you British soldier; come you back to Mandalay!”
    […]
    Where the flyin’-fishes play,
    An’ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ‘crost the Bay!

    Depak and Obama make as much sense the temple-bells . . . in a typhoon.

  • I would like to thank all involved in this thread. Bringing up the drinking of urine allows me to enter this thread into the TAC record book as one of the top ten most bizarre discussion threads. Huzzah! Release the dove of Triumph!

  • Urine indeed! A bizarre topic for discussion. Yes, Zacharias is an Evangelical Protestant. But I hope you won’t hold that against him. He realizes that a marriage of East and West (eastern religion and western technology) is not the answer to our spiritual disease.

  • T SHaw, I’d rather expect you to quote Rudyard Kipling: east and west, never the twain shall meet.

  • “But I hope you won’t hold that against him.”

    Nope, Pat, I don’t. In fact, the Protestant Pentecostals and Evangelicals are doing precisely what we Catholics have failed to do. In spite of all their theological errors, they KNOW that it’s the Gospel of repentance and conversion, not this insipid worthless horse manure that passes for social justice, the common good and peace at any price that has been preached from Catholic pulpits all across this nation for the past 40 years. For decades we have accomodated this worthless, mindless culture of “it’s not her fault she’s pregnant” and “he can’t help it he’s gay”. I am sick and tired of this yellow bellied, cowardly, gutless, spineless, craven, effeminate idiocy that pretends to be open mindedness and tolerance. It’s time to get intolerant and point out what sin really is and what its consequences are. Deepak Chopra and his godless liberal idiocy are but symptoms of the deeper problem – SIN. It’s time to tell Satan where he can go. And it’s time to start preaching the truth so people can be rescued from his demonic grip.

  • Pat,

    Actually, I thought of E-W but “Mandalay” made less rational sense and thus is more appropriate for this discussion.

    The left is unadulterated emotion and lies. Those people hate facts and truth which are not susceptible to their whining.

    Hey! Ho!

    Occult hydration habits are another issue . . . I will not touch it.

  • Yes, when they were wild-eyed and unwashed they seemed demonic. Now they look so well put together with their suits and haircuts. But the Devil can disguise himself as an angel of light. He’s alive and working as always.

    The Occult has a long history of misusing human waste ritualistically. They did it during the Mau Mau uprising. It was a real treat for people stationed there at the time, of course. Lol.

  • Mr. Primavera, I’ll let you in on a little secret. The more traditional Evangelicals are far apart from Pentecostalism. The gap is not perhaps as wide as that between Catholics and Protestants generally, but one nevertheless exists. Zacharias, to my knowledge, is a more traditional Evangelical, and would probably be as wary of Pentecostals as of drinking urine.

  • Pat,

    My immediate family (mother and siblings) are all devout Assemblies of God Pentecostals. My boss and his family are all Baptists. Other than the charismatic nature of AG adherents, and the Calvinist tendencies of some Baptists, the differences aren’t as great as you figure. I agree that Zacharias is perhaps a more “traditional” Evangelical. I don’t know where he stands on the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues. BTW, there is a charismatic, tongue speaking segment in the Catholic Church: http://www.nsc-chariscenter.org/.

  • One other thing, Pat.

    Bishop Burbidge of the Diocese of Raleigh and Dr. Cecil Robeck had a seven day meeting at the vatican on Pentecostal / Catholic International Dialogue. More here:

    http://www.dioceseofraleigh.org/news/view.aspx?id=1151

    I don’t know how I could have forgotten that since Bishop Burbidge had been my bishop.

    So the next time you want to be condenscending and let me on a little secret, please ensure you do a little research first. I have been with Baptists and Pentecostals my whole life. Baptists don’t like Pentecostals because of tongue speaking. Pentecostals don’t like Baptists because they don’t speak in tongues, and because most Baptists believe in the doctrine of eternal salvation. There are other differences, of course, but those are the main ones. That being said, the Pentecostals are every bit as Evangelical as the Baptists other Evenaglical denomination. I hold less hope for the Presbyterians, Methodists and Lutherans who claim to be evangelical because they have been infiltrated with modernism and liberalism. I make the exception of the vice president at my place of work who is a devout Evangelical Presbyterian. We have had several interesting Bible discussions, focusing on Genesis 1 and 2 (evolution and creation are an interest of his – he shared with me some fascinating things about changes in light speed over time that he says supports the diea of a short Earth history – but that’s a conversation for a different time).

    Oh, I forgot – the four main Pentecostal denominations are AG, Church of God, Aime Sempleton’s Church of the Four Square Gospel (now hers is a real story that would make anyone blush!) and Pentecostal Holiness. I have variously attended the first three as well as Baptist and other Evangelicals. Never had the chance to attend the fourth. And my vice president invited me to attend his Presbyterian Church at some time; just haven’t had the chance yet. Not much difference in the preaching, that’s for sure. But unlike most Catholic priests, they can and do preach repentance and conversion. Sad. We are supposed to be the example.

  • Paul P: I live near a VERY “evangelical” Presbyterian church. You never can tell with Presbyterians. Shortly after I moved here they split over abortion — the folks who said abortion was okay left, but the rest of them split again, some of them forming their own non-Presbyterian church. The two churches work together on projects and charities now, and I don’t really know what the difference between them is. I have asked but the answers I get are (to me) vague, although I’m sure they are clear as day to those familiar with all the people and the differences in what they profess. It is endlessly interesting to work and deal with Protestant churches. It seems to me that a lot of them seize on to one great part of Christianity that properly belongs to the Church, and run with it — but make up the rest. They are often very, very, VERY good examples of the one part they seize on. The Presbyterian folks I know are good and faithful people, very zealous. They do a lot of work with the poor, a lot of outreach, a lot of evangelizing. They LOVE God. But they remain pretty much all one demographic, education level, and size. There is nothing universal about them.

  • Yes, Gail, I agree with your observations. I did a little more digging on Ravi Zacharias and discovered he was ordained by the Christian and Missionary Alliance. Its statement of faith at ( http://www.cmalliance.org/about/beliefs/doctrine ) isn’t all that different that what I remember from my youth in the AG (the main difference being the AG emphasis on speaking in tongues as evidence of the infilling of the Holy Spirit). But I am sure there are differences that each denomination considers significant enough to keep intact the division that divides them.

    I also found it interesting that Zacharias had once spoken at a Mormon Temple:

    http://ldstalk.wordpress.com/2010/01/14/ravi-zacharias-at-the-mormon-tabernacle/

    You can view the entire video at the web link above. My impression is that Zacharias does go out of his way to reach out without compromising the Gospel of Conversion and Repentance. Of course, the “nuances” of his Protestant theology are a different matter, but I find I have more in common with what little I know about him than I have with any liberal democrat pseudo-Catholic “Christian” espousing that social justice nonsense which murders unborn babies and sanctifies homosexual filth.

  • I thought Deepak Chopra was some mediocre rap “singer.” Am I confusing him with someone else? Maybe if he put his ramblings to rap music he would get a bigger audience.

  • I apologize if I sounded condescending before. Pentecostalism isn’t Protestant or Evangelical according to their own classification. It is not a denomination either, from what I’ve been told by one. It’s an organization.

    Zacharias is a great apologist, I think. He knows that Christianity resonates with one’s totality. It reaches our hearts and minds and goes to the very center of our being.

Garrow’s Law

Tuesday, August 16, AD 2011

As faithful readers of this blog know, for my sins no doubt, I am an attorney.  Not having quite enough of the Law during my working hours, I am always on the lookout for good entertainment about lawyers and the law.  One of the best I have encountered in many a moon is a BBC series called Garrow’s Law.  This is a heavily fictionalized account of the trials, I know I should have resisted that, and tribulations of William Garrow, an Old Bailey, the chief criminal court of London, barrister, who on raw legal talent rose from nothing to become Solicitor General of England and Wales, Attorney General for England and Wales, a Judge, and a Privy Counselor.  He originated the phrase presumption of innocence, and first came to notice as a trail blazing defense counsel in regard to the rules of evidence, such as the rule against hearsay.

Continue reading...

5 Responses to Garrow’s Law

  • Will check it out, Don. After reading and watching Dickens’ Bleak House, which centered on the long-running but unresolved litigation in England’s Court of Chancery, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, I have never been unable to understand the intricacies of the law.

    I thought Rumpole wasn’t bad and Perry Mason had its moments. Having covered many criminal trials and hearings as a reporter over 30, including several murder cases, I must say that there is little real drama in the courtroom. Most of it consists of arcane exchanges between lawyers and judges and usually mundane testimony, especially from law enforcement officials who sound like they’re reading a TelePrompTer.

    I usually look for juror reactions to see how many yawns or suppressed smirks are elicited. That’s the best part.

  • amending previous…over 30 years…

  • BTW, Don, I don’t mean to threadjack but don’t know where else to put this: I watched John Rabe and it was excellent although a bit understated as to the horrors of the Rape of Nanking. I finished Chang’s powerful book and can now understand somewhat her subsequent battle with depression and then suicide. Having to relive all that clearly took its toll.

  • Don, is it true that money won in class action lawsuits, including attorney fees, is not considered “income” for tax purposes?

  • Tax law is one area of the law I wisely avoid Joe.

The 2011 Cross & Eagle Catholic Blogging Awards

Monday, August 15, AD 2011

I am starting new tradition here at The American Catholic (TAC) and that is the Cross & Eagle Catholic Blogging Awards.  The Cross & Eagle Awards will showcase what I believe to be the best in the Catholic Blogosphere.  Ranging from serious to funny I’ll be posting a different post each day celebrating the best in the Catholic Blogosphere.

To begin tomorrow, Tuesday late-morning, I will announce the first winner in the category of Most Beautiful Blog.  The blog that has a great layout, contrasting colors, cool looking pics, and a lot more.

There are several categories from Best Blogging Name to Most Popular Blog to Biggest Breakout Blog.  The categories are numerous and creative in order to exemplify the rich diversity of the Catholic Blogosphere.

Continue reading...

5 Responses to The 2011 Cross & Eagle Catholic Blogging Awards

GOP Presidential Poll for August

Monday, August 15, AD 2011

The American Catholic (TAC) has been running a periodic poll of the GOP presidential field. So naturally following the Iowa Straw Poll we have this months poll for our TAC readers.  We have included candidates that have declared their candidacy as well as other speculative* candidates. As the primaries arrive the field of candidates should narrow down a bit.

Tim Pawlenty has dropped out, but Rick Perry has “officially” entered the race.  A newcomer to our poll is Representative Thad McCotter of Michigan.  Tim Pawlenty garnered 13 votes in our last TAC poll, we’ll see where Pawlenty’s supporters will go to next.  Rick Santorum won the last TAC poll.

You can view the results of our last poll here.

Update:  My apologies, I have added Michele Bachmann.

* For example even though Chris Christie has denied he is interested in running, he still will be in Iowa for an inexplicable reason. Until then, he will be showing in the poll until we don’t see his name on the actual roll.

Continue reading...

12 Responses to GOP Presidential Poll for August

Truth About The Riots In England

Monday, August 15, AD 2011

We live in a low and dishonest age.  Political considerations cause almost all politicians and vast sections of populations to refuse to make fairly obvious statements of fact about the time in which we live.  I therefore take notice when someone decides to break this taboo.  Max Hastings, a British historian, we see a sample of him at work in the above video, shatters one great taboo by honestly describing the process by which modern Western society all too effectively produces amoral barbarians within its midst.  He begins:

If you live a normal life of absolute futility, which we can assume most of this week’s rioters do, excitement of any kind is welcome. The people who wrecked swathes of property, burned vehicles and terrorised communities have no moral compass to make them susceptible to guilt or shame.

Most have no jobs to go to or exams they might pass. They know no family role models, for most live in homes in which the father is unemployed, or from which he has decamped.

 They are illiterate and innumerate, beyond maybe some dexterity with computer games and BlackBerries.
They are essentially wild beasts. I use that phrase advisedly, because it seems appropriate to young people bereft of the discipline that might make them employable; of the conscience that distinguishes between right and wrong.
They respond only to instinctive animal impulses — to eat and drink, have sex, seize or destroy the accessible property of others.
Their behaviour on the streets resembled that of the polar bear which attacked a Norwegian tourist camp last week. They were doing what came naturally and, unlike the bear, no one even shot them for it.

A former London police chief spoke a few years ago about the ‘feral children’ on his patch — another way of describing the same reality.

The depressing truth is that at the bottom of our society is a layer of young people with no skills, education, values or aspirations. They do not have what most of us would call ‘lives’: they simply exist.

Continue reading...

25 Responses to Truth About The Riots In England

  • The last four paragraphs are repeats of red text in the middle. Otherwise, I agree. But truthie won’t.

  • Thank you for noting that Paul, I have made the correction. Alas, I slept in until 5:00 AM today and thus didn’t have time for my usual proof reading before the post was published.

  • While we’re discussing the lack of any discernible moral compass, I thought for a moment after reading this piece that the Daily Mail might be moving beyond its primary function as a running infomercial for Lady Gaga and the Kardashian spawn. But after clicking to the home page, I see we’re out of luck. I suspect there’s a connection between what Hastings is saying and what Rupert Murdoch’s tabloids are feeding us, but we’ll have to look elsewhere to fully appreciate the irony. All in all, when it comes to geographical reporting, the Daily Mail’s coverage of the Martian landscape is probably more trustworthy than what it has to say regarding the moral high ground.

  • I will register a partial dissent:

    1. Bad social policy is bad social policy. It may induce more frequent and severe rioting than would otherwise be the case, but rioting as a phenomenon is not strictly dependent on social policy. Episodic rioting is a feature of urban life that has a loooong history (which the welfare state does not).

    2. To say the welfare state is ‘running out of money’ is a metaphor which obscures what our actual political-economic problems are. Our societies are not households living off their savings, literally or metaphorically.

  • We are running out of money Art in that our paper currencies are simply a reflection of the strength of our economies. Government debt and expenditure has reached a point throughout most of the West where it is having a baleful impact upon the economies. The US can always conjure money out of thin air in order to meet its obligations, but not without a bad impact on the economy.

    Mr. Hastings did not pretend that his analysis was the key to all examples of urban riots, but I think his analysis was completely on target in regard to the current riots.

  • The one source of blame I think you may have missed is just how poor our current education system is for preparing people for jobs.

    I was in Catholic schools K-16 (sic), and it was awful even there. Two decades plus of “studying” things completely inapplicable to any job setting whatsoever. Very little of actual intellectual substance either.

    Two decades of marinating in worthless classrooms creates some pretty desperate people. I’m not surprised that the end product are individuals with little incentive or ability to earn a living.

  • Don, there’s some good stuff here but I’d have to take issue with this:

    ‘Only education — together with politicians, judges, policemen and teachers with the courage to force feral humans to obey rules the rest of us have accepted all our lives — can provide a way forward and a way out for these people.’

    Firstly, to paint all the rioters with one brush and label them as “feral” and “illiterate” is much too broad a stroke. Each person is unique, an individual, and though we as humans share certain characteristics, we are each ‘one of a kind.’ I believe Christianity teaches this in the saying that Jesus would have given his life even if there were only one person to save.

    Secondly, the prescription that ‘only education’, coupled with obedience to authority, is much too vague and simplistic. What does ‘education’ mean? What is to be taught? Who is to teach? All questions that Plato and Aristotle struggled with and differed about.

    John Taylor Gatto, in his eye-opening book, “The Underground History of American Education,” writes:

    ‘Old-fashioned dumbness used to be simple ignorance; now it is transformed from ignorance into permanent mathematical categories of relative stupidity like “gifted and talented,” “mainstream,” “special ed.” Categories in which learning is rationed for the good of a system of order. Dumb people are no longer merely ignorant. Now they are indoctrinated, their minds conditioned with substantial doses of commercially prepared disinformation dispensed for tranquilizing purposes.’

    Bur rather than blame the underclass, Gatto goes on to write:

    ‘The new dumbness is particularly deadly to middle- and upper-middle-class kids already made shallow by multiple pressures to conform imposed by the outside world on their usually lightly rooted parents. When they come of age, they are certain they must know something because their degrees and licenses say they do. They remain so convinced until an unexpectedly brutal divorce, a corporate downsizing in midlife, or panic attacks of meaninglessness upset the precarious balance of their incomplete humanity, their stillborn adult lives. Alan Bullock, the English historian, said Evil was a state of incompetence. If true, our school adventure has filled the twentieth century with evil.’

    Thus, it seems to me at least, that the call to education and obedience to authority must address the ways that knowledge and wisdom are imparted, who is to do the imparting and what authorities are to be “obeyed.” Did not millions of Germans obey Hitler in the 1930s as the supreme authority? Did not the Japanese bow to Hirohito as their true god, even placing him higher than God Himself?

    It is easy and tempting to sit in one’s living room watching riots on TV and make blanket judgments. I plead guilty in my knee-jerk reaction in previous posts ascribing solely racial/religious motivation. Clearly, the causes are many and deep-rooted and, as you suggest, the ‘putrid fruit’ of rebellion.

    Perhaps the answers lie within each of us, not externally. To “know thyself,” as Socrates said, is difficult. Then he added, “If I knew myself I would run away.”

  • Hastings is wrong. More has been written about Christ and Napoleon than Churchill.

  • Pingback: Liberalism: “Nonsense on Stilts” | Cowboy Papist
  • There’s a tone in the excerpts that the rioters are incorrigible. Less so in the original article as a whole. For me, the quotes in Donald’s article presented a very non-Catholic impression that the rioters are beyond hope of domestication, a sub-species of human. I’d strongly warn against that kind of thinking.

  • I can’t understand how certain people have the ability to make excuses for filthy arsonists and looters . . .

  • So dare I ask – where is our detractor from the left, Truthie?

  • As an attorney you surely must understand that police officers and teachers now have no authority at all, and must consider every working moment and personal contact as a threat not only to their safety but to their freedom because of lawsuits. Schools are defined by law and by fear; a police officer teacher who demonstrates initiative is outside one of the thousands of codifications of law and will be destroyed. I don’t think that powerlessness is their choice. Further, judges can only apply the law as it is, not as we might wish it to be. Politicians — well, we elect them, mostly by not voting at all and allowing the activist class to take charge. The Church of England is a vapidity and Catholicism is in one of its periodic spasms of self-doubt.

    Just to cheer you up.

  • Make that “A police officer or teacher.”

    I hand my head in abject shame.

  • And I hang my head, too.

  • “Just to cheer you up”

    Thank you Mack! 🙂 I am truly cheered by the thought that the current situation cannot go on much longer. Machines before they expire often give off grinding sounds as the mechanism is wearing down, and the entire West has been hearing those grinding sounds for several years. Far better if we were getting rid of the welfare state because we decided that is was poison for the people it purportedly served, but it crashing from fiscal insolvency will do in a pinch. Saint Paul wrote long ago that those who do not work should not eat. In the 20th century we expanded the laudable goal of supporting those who cannot support themselves to turning large swathes of the population into drones. Far worse than the expense is what this has done to the human dignity of the recipients. Everything in this world carries a price tag, and few price tags are higher than dependence upon the State for subsistence.

  • The state has assumed the role of God. People will gladly yield control. Slavery is easier than freedom. But society in general is coming to nothing here in the West, just as St. Paul said of the world in its current state.

  • Yes, I agree, totally. In order to reign supreme, the State requires a crippled populace. It reminds me of the movie Misery, where the lady played by Kathy Bates had to cripple the actor to keep him where he was so that she could continue to nurture him. I think our institutions and government have become sort of like that. They create problems and then move in and tell you how they will fix them. And this recurrs continuously, except no one is laughing because it really isn’t funny. It’s stupid.

  • “Saint Paul wrote long ago that those who do no work should not eat.”

    That was written to the Church at Thessalonika. They thought the Lord was coming back right away, so they sat on their fat lazy behinds, expecting everyone else to feed and care for them. I pointed that out to Truthie in my long winded dialogue yesterday, but it fell on deaf eyes (or blinded eyes, as the case may be).

  • There will always be people who thrive on schemes that afford power to the State in the name of helping others. I’ve met up with numerous people like that.

  • This subject is vital.

    The best of the post is the phrase – nonsense on stilts. Also, Edmund Burke’s proportions are timeless. I wonder how he would address the legislated Godlessness, space proximity (lack of open land), urban problem, and government money/debt constraints adding to the proportion of people who couldn’t conceive of his meaning.

    The worst of it is that barbarism is inevitable without serious, swift sanctions on the failures. I think the first change should be the Supreme Court revisiting the definition of a life and reversing the 1972 visit. While that is happening, the Legislative arm should scrutinize budgets as if their job depended on that. The Executive branch should foster this activity, while reading Edmund Burke’s proportions. Then, someone could complete the sentence about ‘no child left behind’, behind what?

    Otherwise, England’s barbarianism … This country has a stronger Catholic presence, which I believe is what holds us together so far. I also think that Mary prays for us. Maybe, we should revitalize our Rosary Societies or Sodalities while we wait and watch.

  • PM, Burke knew human nature. So he was cautious about change and honored stability. He understood that fundamental truths exist that should always inform us regardless of context. Change, yes. But the right kind of change. And at a manageable pace.

    As for the Rosary, I’ve explained: it’s a merger of the Rose (love platonized) and the cosmic vision of Mary. The fusion of two perennial themes.

    Throughout the scriptural story we find that Mary plays a role in God’s plan. So does everyone he calls. That’s why he calls us: to work alongside him in redemption as we move toward his dream—New Jerusalem. We worship God and serve Him.

  • The person must want to become a decent member of society. That is why St. Paul wrote that a perosn who does not work does not eat, that he may come to appreciate the work that is done for him, that he may come to see the goodness in others, in creation and in nature. That he may come to love God as God has loved him. These riots are the fruit of atheism, without our Creator and unalienable rights, what sovereign personhood, what human dignity, what patriotism, what love of neighbor will bring these feral adherents to demons into caring human beings?

  • Yes, if you deny God, you deny man as well. Our concept of man today with all his rights, responsiblities, and worth is bound up in a two-thousand year old Christian conception. THat’s our anthropological sense. We want to hold onto the definiton, but it’s been uprooted from its origin.

Bye Bye Pawlently

Sunday, August 14, AD 2011

Tim Pawlenty is the first casualty of the Republican primary contest for President, with his announcement today of his dropping out.  I am not too surprised.  His only hope as a candidate was to win the Iowa caucuses.  His attacks against the frontrunner in Iowa, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, in the debate last week proved completely ineffective.  His loss in the Saturday Aimes, Iowa straw poll, coming in a distant third after Bachmann and Ron Paul (R. Pluto), demonstrated that his hopes in Iowa were minimal.

Continue reading...

53 Responses to Bye Bye Pawlently

  • Pawlenty’s campaign was a dud from the get go. Like Fred Thompson in 2008, T-Paw’s candidacy never was.

  • Always find the writing, opinions, and ideas on this blog to be interesting and well-reasoned.

    That said, I also find it extremely disheartening to see the flippant disregard to the candidacy of Congressman Ron Paul. Your notation of “(R. Pluto) after his name is a childish and snide knock at a solidly principled candidate for president.

    If you are looking for a candidate that has a decades long pro-life record, Dr. Paul is one.

    If you are looking for a candidate that has a decades long fiscally conservative record, Dr. Paul certainly qualifies.

    If you are looking for a candidate whose actions throughout their career demonstrates unwavering fidelity to rule of law, individual freedom and liberty, and the God-given rights of every human being, Dr. Paul stands out well beyond every Republican and Democrat candidate for this office.

    To tag him (R. Pluto) is to join Rush Limbaugh and his “nuts on parade” diatribe against the only candidate who truly espouses peace and freedom. This doesn’t make sense to me on a blog that otherwise seems to write in favor of these fundamental human principles.

  • What the hell is the purpose of a “straw poll” more than six months before the caucuses, which are themselves six months from the convention.
    Why does our election process from the “starting to begin to consider forming a committee” stage to finally actually casting ballots have to be so ludicrously elongated?

  • “That said, I also find it extremely disheartening to see the flippant disregard to the candidacy of Congressman Ron Paul. Your notation of “(R. Pluto) after his name is a childish and snide knock at a solidly principled candidate for president.”

    Nope, it is an accurate statement about Paul. The man is a headcase on foreign policy and his type of thinking would be begging for a nuclear Pearl Harbor.

    A typical Paul divergence from reality was when Osama bin Laden was taken out:

    “Ron Paul says he would not have authorized the mission that led to the death of Osama bin Laden, and that President Barack Obama should have worked with the Pakistani government instead of authorizing a raid.

    “I think things could have been done somewhat differently,” Paul said this week. “I would suggest the way they got Khalid [Sheikh] Mohammed. We went and cooperated with Pakistan. They arrested him, actually, and turned him over to us, and he’s been in prison. Why can’t we work with the government?”

    Well maybe it was because we knew that sections of the Pakistani military are in bed with the Jihadists and have been protecting Osama. When it comes to foreign policy Paul inhabits a dream world made up of wishful thinking, isolationism, conspiracy mongering and raw ignorance.

    http://www.captainsjournal.com/2011/05/16/isolationist-fever-ron-pauls-delerious-statements-on-bin-laden/

    Beyond that, his ignorance on a great many subjects that he insists on pontificating on, including the Civil War, is a wonder to behold. The Congress will be a better place when he is out of it in 2013.

  • “Why does our election process from the “starting to begin to consider forming a committee” stage to finally actually casting ballots have to be so ludicrously elongated?”

    Probably because those candidates who start early have tended to be the ones elected since the Sixties. That, and the huge amounts of money required to run a race, which takes an enormous amount of time to raise.

  • H. Bunce, if you are looking for a candidate who has ever superintended a corps of people larger and more complex than his office staff, Ron Paul is not that guy.

  • I’m with Bunce on this, McClarey. Ron Paul is only a headcase insofar as he aspires to return us to the days when we didn’t feel compelled to meddle in every part of the world where we might have had some tangential interest – and the US will be done as a nation before that ever happens, I am convinced. And one of the reasons is that nationalist idolators and military adventurists with far more public exposure than yourself share in your casual and cavalier disregard for ideas that you can’t actually defeat in a debate. Or, lestways, I haven’t seen anyone with gumption enough to even try, let alone succeed. Why bother, when dismissal or snide comments like yours and Art Deco’s are so much easier?

  • Wolfie, Paul yearns for the days when America could hunker down behind two vast oceans and let the rest of the world go to the Devil. His complete nonchalance about a rogue regime like Iran obtaining nuclear weapons amply demonstrates that he does not understand what we are facing in the world and does not wish to. Although I almost wish I could be there after a smuggled nuke takes out an American city to hear President Ron Paul explain how he will solve the problem by issuing letters of marque and reprisal!

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig8/fisk5.html

  • I’m kind of disappointed to hear that Pawlenty dropped out… I was thinking that he might be a good president precisely BECAUSE he wasn’t the greatest campaigner nor was he a highly polarizing figure. The last thing we need is another president of EITHER liberal or conservative persuasion who cultivates a cult of personality or a “political savior” image. Just find someone who can do the job.

    In other GOP campaign (sort of) news, I just found out that the Sarah Palin bus tour stopped at the Lincoln Presidential Museum in Springfield this morning. Nope, did’nt see her (would have been at Mass at the time anyway), didn’t even know she was in town until she was gone and the local newspaper (www.sj-r.com) posted a story on its website.

    The newspaper invited people who may have seen her at the museum to post comments to the story, but needless to say, NOT ONE comment so far is from anyone who actually saw or met her, it’s all Palin haters and Palin defenders arguing back and forth as usual.

  • As for Ron Paul, perhaps he, like Newt Gingrich, is half genius and half crazy — and you can’t always figure out which half is in charge at any given time. He might do well as a lower level economic adviser to a GOP administration, and might come up with some good ideas; just be sure he isn’t in a position where his bad ideas will do actual damage.

  • “…nor was he a highly polarizing figure…”

    Please speak for yourself — the man’s an ex-Catholic.

  • This is sort of unusual for me.

    I’m about 88% in agreement with AD on this one: “H. Bunce, if you are looking for a candidate who has ever superintended a corps of people larger and more complex than his office staff, Ron Paul is not that guy.”

    Absolutely! Currently, America is experiencing the horrors attendant with a president whose prior executive/superintending experience consists of organizing sit-ins, and aiding and abetting government frauds, i.e., Rezko.

    I’m starting to think the Swiss model: everyone knows not to attack us (ICBM’s, nuke trident subs, ABM) and keep our nose out of everybody else’s business. That may be appropriate for American peace and prosperity. The Swiss franc is the envy of the world, too.

    I recently converted to the gold standard. If you oppose central planning, collective control of the economy, or the Washington/Wall Street five trillion dollar a year money ring, Rep. Paul may the best man in the areas of fiscal and monetary policy.

    The 12% where I disagree with AD above is wherein I believe the federal government should be THAT small and THAT simple.

  • “Nope, it is an accurate statement about Paul. The man is a headcase on foreign policy and his type of thinking would be begging for a nuclear Pearl Harbor.”

    No, sir, it is wildly inaccurate. It doesn’t make sense to oppose the clumsy and destructive interventions by government domestically while simultaneously supporting the same clumsy and destructive interevention internationally.

    It is interesting to juxtapose your above statement with this one… “Well maybe it was because we knew that sections of the Pakistani military are in bed with the Jihadists and have been protecting Osama. When it comes to foreign policy Paul inhabits a dream world made up of wishful thinking, isolationism, conspiracy mongering and raw ignorance.”

    The Pakistani’s possess nuclear weapons, are corrupt (according to your statemtent, and I agree with you), worked closely with jihadists, and apparently were protecting/harboring bin Laden. Given this, shouldn’t we be warring with Pakistan first before we begin the war with Iran?

    Dr. Paul’s book, A Foreign Policy of Freedom, is his collection of statements and positions regarding American foreign policy both before and after 9/11. In my opinion, it is a stunning book that shows a grasp of foreign policy that rivals any office holder since the beginning of our republic. I’m sure you disagree, but it thoroughly refutes your claim of “wishfull thinking, isolationism, conspiracy mongering, and raw ignorance”. Raw ignorance?! For God’s sake, the man understands more about what brought our country to futile wars from Vietnam to Iraq to Afghanistan to Libya (and beyond) than any potential Republican presidential candidate and certainly Barack Obama.

    When I was a young boy, the argument was we must fight and die in Vietnam to prevent the “dominoes from falling” to communism. 58,000 dead Americans later, Vietnam was a communist country. 40 years after that, we trade with them, we are tourists in their country, we invest in Vietnam. In short, we engage with them peacefully whether we like their form of government or not; whether they continue to oppress their own people or not.

    Fast forward to 2011, think about this Vietnam lesson, and ask whether we should be engaging Iran, Pakistan, Libya, and every other nuclear or non-nuclear country we currently vilify…or should we be bombing and killing them?

    To say Dr. Paul is an “isolationist” is a thoughtless smear. To say he is ignorant of reasoned foreign policy is contrary to fact. To say he engages in wishful thinking is the opposite of his entire record since his first term in 1976.

    You obviously don’t agree and I respect that opinion. To drop in the childish (R. Pluto) even further degrades that opinion.

  • “The Swiss model”

    Yep the Swiss model works! All you need is a United States of America to defeat Nazi Germany and deter the Soviets from conquering Europe subsequent to World War II. Which nation T.Shaw do you propose as the US if the US becomes Switzerland?

  • “Given this, shouldn’t we be warring with Pakistan first before we begin the war with Iran?”

    No Pakistani leaders have promised to use nuclear weapons against Israel and the US unlike Iranian leaders. Pakistan also isn’t supplying weapons to Hamas and to kill American soldiers in Iraq as Iran is doing.

    “40 years after that, we trade with them, we are tourists in their country, we invest in Vietnam. ”

    And the Church is persecuted, the Vietnamese know no political freedom and over a million Vietnamese fled their country, risking their lives on the high seas. Why it’s Nirvana!

    Ron Paul’s foreign policy is quite simple. Retreat to Fortress America and let the rest of the world go to Hell. His foreign policy, if implemented, would be a disaster for the US and the rest of the world. Fortunately he will never get the opportunity to learn how little his delusions accord with the real world.

  • Maybe if he would have had something other to stand for other than bashing Obama.

  • “No Pakistani leaders have promised to use nuclear weapons against Israel and the US unlike Iranian leaders. Pakistan also isn’t supplying weapons to Hamas and to kill American soldiers in Iraq as Iran is doing.”

    Pakistani leaders and the nation’s population as a whole is deeply influenced by Islam and Pakistani’s have made innumerable statements condemning and threatening Israel. And just where are the sanctuaries and support (weapons among them) currently for Al-Qaeda and Taliban? The answer is Pakistan. Who is killing Americans in Afghanistan? Al-Qaeda and Taliban.

    “And the Church is persecuted, the Vietnamese know no political freedom and over a million Vietnamese fled their country, risking their lives on the high seas. Why it’s Nirvana!”

    Come on, this is a complete and total straw man argument and you’ve always been better than that on this blog. Did 58,000 American dead prevent Church persecution, no political freedom, or any of the other misery of life in Vietnam? No, it didn’t and I never intimated that this country was any sort of paradise. What has helped some since the end of the war, and may do much more in the future, is American trade, tourism, investment, interaction with the Vietnamese people. It can do so much more effectively, and morally I might add, than American guns and bombs. THIS is the foreign policy advocated by Dr. Paul.

    It can do the same for Iranians, Libyans, Somalis, Pakistanis, ……

    “Ron Paul’s foreign policy is quite simple. Retreat to Fortress America and let the rest of the world go to Hell. His foreign policy, if implemented, would be a disaster for the US and the rest of the world. Fortunately he will never get the opportunity to learn how little his delusions accord with the real world.”

    This is a gross mischaracterization of Dr. Paul’s foreign policy positions. In fact, it is completely the opposite of his 30+ years of speaking and voting on all these matters. Each of us, and generations yet unborn, are facing a debt burden that is unpayable and immoral. This is due in large part to NOT following Dr. Paul’s exhortations against American empire building. And this doesn’t even begin to calculate the staggering human cost of our current course of foreign policy, advocated by all the other Republican candidates.

    Don’t take my word for it, and certainly don’t take the MSM word for it. Find out for yourself by investing a few hours in reading what he has to say. If you find no merit in what he actually says, then so be it. At least you will be clear in what Dr. Paul’s ideas are. Agree or disagree, one could not help but respect the man and his adherance to the principles of freedom and peace.

    He may not get the opportunity to implement his policy views. And that is too bad for my children and yours.

  • “Pakistani leaders and the nation’s population as a whole is deeply influenced by Islam and Pakistani’s have made innumerable statements condemning and threatening Israel.”

    They have never threatened to nuke Israel and the United States. Additionally, elements of the Pakistani military have been fighting against Al-Qaeda and the Taliban for years. This places them in a different category than Iran. It is precisely an inability to make such distinctions that makes Ron Paul such a buffoon on foreign policy. That, and his belief that the solution to our conflicts overseas is simply to abandon the field to our enemies and to retreat to our shores.

    “Did 58,000 American dead prevent Church persecution, no political freedom, or any of the other misery of life in Vietnam?”

    The Church was certainly not persecuted while American troops were in Vietnam, the South Vietnamese enjoyed far more political and economic freedom and over a million South Vietnamese had not had to flee their homeland to escape Communist tyranny. There are real life consequences when we give up, take our marbles and go home, and the consequences for the Vietnamese who fought beside us during the Vietnam War were dire. Ron Paul and other isolationists simply refuse to deal with the real life consequences of their preferred solution to foreign policy difficulties which is always US retreat.

    “Don’t take my word for it, and certainly don’t take the MSM word for it. Find out for yourself by investing a few hours in reading what he has to say.”

    Oh I have been following Ron Paul and reading his writings long before he came into the public limelight in the last decade.

  • The constant name-calling against Ron Paul by mainstream GOP members only reveal how childish and morally bankrupt they are. Instead of honestly debating him, they simple appeal to the voter’s base nature.

    Ron Paul scares the establishment because he’d actually shrink the size of government, and not just talk about it. Who here actually thinks a theoretical Republican president would rollback the size and scope of D.C? God forbid they actually passed a balanced budget, let alone wrote one.

    On foreign policy, the GOP won’t be happy unless they are blowing up somebody on the other side of the planet. War is their solution to every problem, it seems. They love war, and slurp it up from the public trough like it’s an ice cream sundae. They love war just as much as liberals love the welfare state. Fact.

    But you know, I could let that all slide if only the opposition were capable of being mature, decent human beings. You know, Ron Paul has some strong rhetoric, but I can’t recall him ever singling out a person and calling him names. Maybe he’d do better in the polls if he actually did.

    People like Rick Santorum, Michele Bachman and Rick Perry honestly give me the creeps. I would rather sit out the election or vote third party than be morally culpable for the whirlwind these crazies would stir up.

  • “Ron Paul scares the establishment”

    No one is scared of Ron Paul Anthony, because no one believes he will ever be President. He is simply a clown who has a cult who adore him and who stack internet and straw polls for him. He is the GOP Lyndon Larouche and his act got old a very long time ago.

    He is also a hypocrite when it comes to government spending as his long time love affair with government pork projects indicates:

    http://washingtonindependent.com/104609/ron-paul-one-of-only-four-house-republicans-to-request-earmarks-for-2011-budget-updated

    http://freestudents.blogspot.com/2007/07/ron-pauls-personal-pork-projects.html

  • Looking at the GOP field so far, I’d say Barry has little to worry about.
    Paul comes off as a wacko, Romney as an empty suit, Bachmann as Palin lite, Cain as an overachieving pizza maker, Santorum as a yawn, Perry’s “that’s fine with me” on homo marriage as wishy-washy, Gingrich is yesterday’s news, and Pawlenty proved he’s a RINO and irrelevant.

    As for the straw poll, only George W. Bush, winner in 1999, came out first in the general election. The other winners all went nowhere (George H.W. Bush, Pat Robertson, Bob Dole and Phil Gramm – they tied in 1995 – and Mitt Romney).

  • You still haven’t made a single argument. You’ve just got schoolyard name-calling, like any old bully or pundit.

    The man says what he believes, believes what he says, and has the voting record to prove it. Paul is far from perfect, but he has my respect, and for that he’ll get my vote in the primaries.

    I’m sick and tired of the chattering classes telling us all what to think, and Paul’s candidacy is for people sensitive to this growing and constant problem. I genuinely hope he causes migraines for the GOP.

    I have zero confidence that the GOP is capable of putting in a president who will change the nation’s course for the better. I’m 100% confident that should any of the mainstream candidates get in the oval office, we will get more of the same: more war, more spending, and steady decline.

  • “You still haven’t made a single argument.”

    Rubbish Anthony. I have made arguments as to Ron Paul’s insane foreign policy and his love of pork. You have chosen not to respond to the arguments.

    “I genuinely hope he causes migraines for the GOP.”

    No, even as a purely gadfly nuisance candidate Ron Paul is completely ineffective. I would like to see him run on a third party ticket with Dennis Kucinich (D. Neptune), however, for the sheer entertainment value.

  • D-Neptune. Priceless, Don. Paul, R-Alpha Centuri

  • Looking at the GOP field so far, I’d say Barry has little to worry about.

    Gallup has some handy historical statistics published, covering the entire post-war period. Given B.O.’s level of public esteem at this date, should he be returned to office it would be…an innovation. And that is presuming the current unpleasantness in the Eurozone does not draw us into the maelstrom.

  • Joe Green.

    I’m having quite a laugh here. You say Ron Paul (R – Alpha Centauri)
    Don says Ron Paul ( R – Pluto).

    At least, Alpha Centauri is a remote galaxy – Pluto is essentially a non-existent planet.

    Take your pick 😆

    I’m sure Ron will be happy with his retirement package in a few years.

  • “Yep the Swiss model works! All you need is a United States of America to defeat Nazi Germany and deter the Soviets from conquering Europe subsequent to World War II. Which nation T.Shaw do you propose as the US if the US becomes Switzerland?”

    That was the. This is now.

    I don’t relish debating “What would have happened if Custer had machine guns” possibilities.

    War and peace are tough for me.

    Today is a BIG (Feast of the Assumption!). I love this Feast.

    History: Today in 1971, President Nixon (he robo-signed signed my commission) officially closed the Treasury gold window. He took the US off the gold standard. Gold was $35 an ounce. By 1974, gold was $195 an ounce. By January 1980, it was $800 an ounce. Nixon ended the gold standard to assist with the misguided wage and price controls regime.

    The government can’t central plan or collectively control the economy with the gold standard. Since 1971, the world has experienced 39 hyper-inflationary episodes . . . and umpty-umph recessions.

  • “That was the. This is now.”

    Human nature doesn’t change T.Shaw, and I do not think that the challenges we face abroad will vanish if we decide to retreat to a Fortress America.

    In regard to Nixon, it always amused me that he was hated so by Liberals, as his Presidency indicated that he was one of them, a fact noted by conservative critics of the Nixon administration at the time. His moniker of “Tricky Dick” was well earned, but his main trick was putting a conversative facade over what was a RINO essence.

  • I think it is difficult to discern a set of political principles from Richard Nixon’s career that would fix him at a particular place on our domestic spectrum. Garry Wills attempted it in Nixon Agonistes, but his framework told you more about Wills than about Nixon. I suspect the man was a careerist reacting to the world around him. Both he and Spiro Agnew had a vigorous (and, one suspects, genuinely felt) antagonism to the liberal establishment as a subculture, but they carried with them little or nothing in the way of plans for dismantling the liberal establishment’s policy architecture (beyond dismantling goofy initiatives like the Office of Economic Opportunity).

  • Nixon was a big government man through and through Art. Wage and Price controls, the EPA, expansion of domestic federal spending, these and more underlined that Nixon, no less than Johnson, was a believer that large Federal spending was the key to bettering society. His downplaying of human rights as a consideration of US foreign policy and his China policy, indicated that his anti-Communism was skin deep. He opposed abortion publicly, but privately supported it in some circumstances, a stance he embraced openly in his retirement.

    His antipathy for his liberal critics I think was always more because they hated him and wouldn’t let him be a member of the club. He thought there was some snobbishness against his humble background, and I think he was right on that. Nixon in many ways was a fairly conventional liberal Republican in the Thomas Dewey mode. His initial campaigns for the House and Senate in which he pretended, for political expediency, to be a conservative set a pattern by which he was misunderstood throughout his political career by opponents and supporters.

  • With the loser GOP field we have, Obama is headed for a second term. Not one of them could beat him in a general election, regardless of the “polls”. As the old saying goes, Americans deserve the government they want, good and hard.

    As for US foreign policy, it is soon to be irrelevant. Collapsed countires cannot do much foreign policy – we are about to become as relevant as Argentina (only with a crappier soccer team – on the bright side, our wines will still be as good).

  • I do not think that the challenges we face abroad will vanish if we decide to retreat to a Fortress America.

    Kind of begs the question – would we have to face these challenges abroad if, um, we weren’t abroad? Donald, this just seems to be a particualr blind spot for your otherwise pretty spot on analyses.

  • I was not inside either Nixon’s head or Agnew’s head. I merely note that both men were in their way practitioners of bourgeois virtue in their mundane lives, both came from petit bourgeois backgrounds (w/ both fathers in small business), and (until they were well into middle age) lived on (and saved from) their earnings; neither man had much in the way of social connections. A characteristic of liberal opinion of the age was to belittle (from several different directions) the achievements and tastes of men such as Nixon and Agnew. Wills does that in spades in Nixon Agonistes, even sneering at Sprio Agnew’s dog. I do not think either man wished to join a club populated with the likes of Garry Wills and Arthur Schlesinger.

  • Nixon was essentially a morally bankrupt career politician (but I repeat myself). No more nor less than about 90% of our political class.

  • Similar predictions were made cmatt about the inevitability of a second Carter term in 1979 when looking at the Republican field. Reagan was especially written off as an over the hill politician who was far too conservative to be elected. That is why we have campaigns, to see if our crystal balls are working well or not. Considering that Obama is now descending into the thirties in approval in polls that I think understate Republican strength, I believe whoever the GOP nominates will have an excellent chance of giving Obama an early start on his true career: World Celebrity For Life.

  • “I do not think either man wished to join a club populated with the likes of Garry Wills and Arthur Schlesinger.”

    Agnew the corrupt small time politician I do not venture an opinion on. Nixon certainly did. Hence his churning out turgid tomes in retirement to be taken seriously as an elder statesman by the chattering classes who despised him. Nixon was partially successful in this, as the “moderate” Nixon was a useful stick with which to belabor current conservative Republican politicians.

  • With the loser GOP field we have, Obama is headed for a second term. Not one of them could beat him in a general election, regardless of the “polls”. As the old saying goes, Americans deserve the government they want, good and hard.

    Again, Gallup has made available some historical statistics. Several of our recent presidents have recovered in public esteem sufficiently to be returned to office: Truman did, Nixon did, and Reagan did (a task at which Messrs. Carter and Ford failed). Obama will have to recover more territory in less time than any of them (bar, perhaps, Carter). That is not something you would rule out without qualification, but not something you would expect, either. (Most particularly with the Eurozone mess).

  • That is why we have campaigns, to see if our crystal balls are working well or not.

    That’s not why we have campaigns.

    I think Nixon and Agnew were more interesting (and tragic) figures than you say. They both had a great many assets, unfortunately put to ill use.

  • Which nation T.Shaw do you propose as the US if the US becomes Switzerland?

    China. Not because it will want to, but because it has the most to lose/gain from instability as it conquers the world. And frankly, is the only one that can at this point. We won’t like it, I’m sure, but not too many actually “liked” the Pax Romana either (for that matter, there are many dissenters of the “Pax Americana” as well). But these things do not happen by choice, they happen by force, and I am afraid we no longer are in a position to exercise significant force politically, economically or militarily for much longer. We had our run, it was a decent one (although rather short-lived), thanks for all the fish.

  • Kind of begs the question – would we have to face these challenges abroad if, um, we weren’t abroad?

    Yes, and that is the problem with Ron Paul. He fancies international conflict as a function of the discretionary decisions of policy-makers not so wise as he. No problem with self-esteem there.

  • “That’s not why we have campaigns.”

    You are too much of a literalist this morning Art! 🙂

    I have never had any use for Nixon. I think the man did great damage to the nation and the GOP. His one saving grace is that the men he defeated in 1968 and 1972 would doubtless have done even greater damage to the nation.

  • I believe whoever the GOP nominates will have an excellent chance of giving Obama an early start on his true career: World Celebrity For Life.

    I would love for that to be the case, provided his replacement truly is a better candidate and not something the same or worse.

    As for Ron Paul’s alleged craziness, well, as Mr. Joel sings, he may just be the lunatic we’re looking for. We’ve tried just about everything else, why not give him a shot?

  • “China. Not because it will want to, but because it has the most to lose/gain from instability as it conquers the world. ”

    Please. China will be doing well if it can hold together mainland China, and not have it disintegrate into warring parts, a fairly frequent occurrence in Chinese history. The aging Communist bureaucrats who run China realize this, even if outside observers from the West are blind to it.

  • “As for Ron Paul’s alleged craziness, well, as Mr. Joel sings, he may just be the lunatic we’re looking for.”

    If the times call for Ron Paul, put me in suspended animation now.

  • Far be it for me to make predictions, but I can easily see a Perry/Romney or Romney/Perry ticket defeating Obama/Biden next year.

  • How about just for giggles, Palin-Bachmann. That would complete the maternalization of America.

  • Another Liberal media gotcha moment about Bachmann, taking one stupid quote and blowing it up into a headline:

    “She didn’t sit down to visit with us and eat with us,” attendee Mel Shaw, 57, told the U.K.’s Telegraph newspaper. “She came into the room like she was Madonna or something, a big star appearing before all us little people. She didn’t want to answer questions. That’s not the way we do politics here.”

    Complete story can be found here:
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44142133/ns/politics-decision_2012/

  • Whew! I was not praising Nixon. My attempted “point” was about taking the US off the gold standard, nothing else, 40 years ago today.

    PS: the gold standard was invented by one of the most intelligent men that ever lived. The man invented Calculus.

    Mitt Romney named the Obama (Palin-copycat) bus tour: the “Magical Misery Tour.”

    Obama cannot run on his horrible record. His orc minions must demonize the opponent.

    By the way: Gallup poll finds Obama’s approval rating is down to 39%, and disapproval is 54%.

    “The evil that men do lives after them; The good is oft interred with their bones; So let it be with” Nixon.

  • A couple of hours ago i watched the ABC interviews etc. the day after the Iowa straw poll – Pawlenty pulling out etc., and Perry, although not there in Iowa, presenting himself as a candidate. Much of the show also focussed a lot on Michelle Bachman.

    Now from an outsider just looking at Perry and Bachman, they both look great, speak great, have their successes – Perry benefitting from the current economy in Texas and its growth from escaping Californians, low internal costs etc. etc.

    I know its far too early to make any sort of call, but right now, I don’t think that would be a silly ticket – Perry/Bachman. I feel that the US isn’t quite ready for a Madame President at this time, but who knows?
    My 2 cents.

  • Pingback: GOP Presidential Poll for August | The American Catholic
  • Ron Paul should be president … of Russia.

    Seriously, from hacking Estonia’s government to invading Georgia (advancing beyond the boundaries of Abkhazia and South Ossetia) and probable interfering with Ukraine’s elections, it seems to me that the Rus could use some isolationism.

    And the fact that someone here wants to give world leadership over to the People’s Republic of China – a nation that forces abortions, persecutes Christians, jails dissidents, and was founded by a man who killed more people than Hitler and Stalin combined – is deplorable. It’s hypocrisy worthy of Biden or Pelosi.

    (You could almost say it’s the unofficial credo of “paleocon” foreign policy – OK for thee, but not for me.)

    I’m not sure who my favorite GOP candidate for the White House is (O Santorum, why must you approve waterboarding?) In any event, I think we should get together and start a grass-roots movement to put Ron Paul in the Kremlin! 😉

  • I think the country is indeed ready for a woman president, but it must be a conservative or moderately conservative woman who is more accomplished and less eccentric than Bachmann.

  • Too bad we can”t turn the clock back 30 years and get Maggie Thatcher over here. I have nothing against eccentricity although it didn’t help Adlai Stevenson, for one.

Saint John of Damascus on the Assumption

Sunday, August 14, AD 2011

Thy blessedness was not death, nor was dying thy perfection, nor, again, did thy departure hence help thee to security. Thou art the beginning, middle, and end of all goods transcending mind, for thy Son in His conception and divine dwelling in thee is made our sure and true security. Thus thy words were true: from the moment of His conception, not from thy death, thou didst say all generations should call thee blessed. It was thou who didst break the force of death, paying its penalty, and making it gracious. Hence, when thy holy and sinless body was taken to the tomb, the choirs of angels bore it, and were all around, leaving nothing undone for the honour of our Lord’s Mother, whilst apostles and all the assembly of the Church burst into prophetic song, saying: “We shall be filled with the good things of Thy house, holy is Thy temple, wonderful in justice.” And again: “The Most High has sanctified His tabernacle. The mountain of God is a fertile mountain, the mountain in which it pleased God to dwell.” The apostolic band lifting the true ark of the Lord God on their shoulders, as the priests of old the typical ark, and placing thy body in the tomb, made it, as if another Jordan, the way to the true land of the gospel, the heavenly Jerusalem, the mother of all the faithful, God being its Lord and architect.

Thy soul did not descend to Limbo, neither did thy flesh see corruption. Thy pure and spotless body was not left in the earth, but the abode of the Queen, of God’s true Mother, was fixed in the heavenly kingdom alone. O how did heaven receive her who is greater than heaven? How did she, who had received God, descend into the grave? This truly happened, and she was held by the tomb. It was not after bodily wise that she surpassed heaven. For how can a body measuring three cubits, and continually losing flesh, be compared with the dimensions of heaven ? It was rather by grace that she surpassed all height and depth, for that which is divine is incomparable.

Continue reading...

5 Responses to Saint John of Damascus on the Assumption

Why the Youth are Rioting

Saturday, August 13, AD 2011

I beg your patience over my absence, and I ask for your prayers.  In June I accepted an administrative position with a new school district.  While this is a very good opportunity in so many ways, I have never in my life found myself so overwhelmed.  I can only say this: teaching was so easy!

At any rate, while this post is not original by any means, I couldn’t help but share the content of an article I ran across today.  The liberal left often likes to pin social unrest on the ills created by the conservative right.  You know how the goes … the economy is in the pits because of right wing policies put in place by George W. Bush … because people don’t have jobs they become socially discontent … because they are socially discontent they rise up “against the man”, so to speak.  Rarely are people actually held accountable for their actions.  Instead, we live in a culture that seeks to pin people’s actions on something external to the human will, something other than sin (dare I even use the word).  Actually, this is nothing new.  It is merely a modern version of ancient Christian heresies that seek to separate the body and soul, in this case to separate the external actions from the internal person.  How often as a teacher did I hear a student explain their dishonesty with, “I know I cheated, Mr. Tawney, but I am not a cheater.  I am a good person.”  The danger in separating our actions from our persons will be catastrophic for the world.  The Christian principle of sacramentality, understood here in its most general sense, says quite the opposite: the external is a reflection of the internal, and at the same time the external forms the internal.  This is true whether we are talking about the words of consecration (which are externally symbolic of the underlying reality and are simultaneously efficacious in bringing about the internal reality) or whether we are talking about the moral act.  Friends, we are how we act, and we act how we are.  When we stand before God, we will not be able to pin our sin on the social policies of one party or another.

I have rambled enough … more than I intended.  With that, I give you the motivation behind these thoughts: an article on the London riots.

The depressing truth is that at the bottom of our society is a layer of young people with no skills, education, values or aspirations. They do not have what most of us would call ‘lives’: they simply exist.

Nobody has ever dared suggest to them that they need feel any allegiance to anything, least of all Britain or their community. They do not watch royal weddings or notice Test matches or take pride in being Londoners or Scousers or Brummies.

Not only do they know nothing of Britain’s past, they care nothing for its present.

They have their being only in video games and street-fights, casual drug use and crime, sometimes petty, sometimes serious.

The notions of doing a nine-to-five job, marrying and sticking with a wife and kids, taking up DIY or learning to read properly, are beyond their imaginations.

Read the rest here.

Continue reading...

91 Responses to Why the Youth are Rioting

  • Take away Christian morality and what’s left is the Lord of the Flies.

  • The terrible truth. From Mark Steyn (a notorious terrorist): “Big Government debauches not only a nation’s finances but its human capital, too. . . . While the British Treasury is busy writing checks to Amsterdam prostitutes, one-fifth of children are raised in homes in which no adult works – in which the weekday ritual of rising, dressing and leaving for gainful employment is entirely unknown. One-tenth of the adult population has done not a day’s work since Tony Blair took office on May 1, 1997.”

    That will be America after Obama and the liberals, who call US terrorists, are finished with America.

  • “Men are qualified for civil liberty in exact proportion to their disposition to put moral chains upon their own appetites, — in proportion as their love to justice is above their rapacity, — in proportion as their soundness and sobriety of understanding is above their vanity and presumption, — in proportion as they are more disposed to listen to the counsels of the wise and good, in preference to the flattery of knaves. Society cannot exist, unless a controlling power upon will and appetite be placed somewhere; and the less of it there is within, the more there must be without. It is ordained in the eternal constitution of things, that men of intemperate minds cannot be free. Their passions forge their fetters.”

    Edmund Burke, 1791

  • “The politics of envy was bound to end in flames.”

    Scott Johnson: “What would liberals do without gaps to close? I think they’d pretty much have to go out of business. You’ve got your education gap. You’ve got your power gap. You’ve got your jail gap. You’ve got your income gap, perhaps the granddaddy of them all.”

    The widest gaping maw would be the virtue gap.

  • One-tenth of the adult population has done not a day’s work since Tony Blair took office on May 1, 1997

    If their age structure is similar to that of the United States, about 17% of the adult population (at any one time) is older than the median retirement age and another 3% of the adult population has been adjudicated as disabled. I do not think these populations have many dependent children.

  • Why beat around the bush, no pun intended. Multiculturism and plurialism have proved to be disasters for all societies. Most of the rifts in society, past and present, are due to racial, ethnic and religious conflicts that are insoluble and always will be. Learn from the animal kingdom. Go to a zoo and you’ll see that each species lives in harmony with itself and is segregated from others. If commingled, conflict arises.

    Much of what happened in London was racially and religiously based. It is a portend of what is to come in America, where race riots are nothing new. Recently, roving blacks attacked whites at the Wisconsin State Fair for no other reason than they were white. Such is the “payback” that slavery engendered and now “the chickens are coming home to roost,” as the liberals like to say.

    It is not PC to say these things, I know. This is not an argument for racial superiority, merely an argument that any time that you mix races, religious and ethnic groups, along with cultural differences, you will wind up with tensions that would not be there otherwise. Japan, which is largely a homogenous society, does not experience these types of civil disruptions nor do most Scandinavian countries and those where ethnic, racial and religious minorities are very small.

    As the “browning” and “muslimization” of America increase and by 2050 whites will be a minority, the frictions will only increase. A black president was the first step toward assuaging the “guilt” over the past. That was the only reason Obama was elected, notwithstanding a weak opponent; it was white Americans doing collective penance for the sins of slavery. Affirmative action for presidents.

    I likely will not live out the decade and am glad I won’t be around to see the ultimate collapse of America, largely due to its destruction from the “vandals within,” as Lincoln warned.

  • Moscow by the Hudson elected its (less glib) Obamateur/exercise in electoral racist quotas in November 1989.

    NYC has not elected a democrat mayor since then. Racists!!!

    Again, “The politics of envy was bound to end in flames.”

  • Joe’s post is so over the top wrong I’m wondering if it is satire. America has since its inception been a melting pot of different ethnicities and cultures. The melting process necessarily involves a robust measure of pluralism and has never been easy. Indeed it has always included elements of racism, extremism, discrimination, resentment, and violence. Notwithstanding these difficulties (or perhaps because of them) this process has made our nation stronger, not weaker. Comparing humanity’s different races, cultures, or ethnicities to different animal species is vile and should have no place in an intelligent forum as this one. The “browning” of America is probably as inevitable as is the “browning” of worldwide humanity (due to a combination of natural intermarriage and travel — the world is getting smaller — and genetics), and there is nothing dangerous or sinister about that at all.
    If the stresses of diversity are in some ways greater today it is because the organic social forces that used to assume and encourage sociological assimilation now encourage sociological amalgamation — i.e., progressive forces have been and are trying to replace the melting pot with the “salad bowl” as they imprudently obsess over cultural differences rather than on the more important common elements of our humanity. These forces are wrong — multiculturalism is not really compatible with e pluribus unum — and will not succeed in the long run (races will eventually disappear altogether for instance), but they are making the process more difficult and acrimonious than it needs to be.

    If America collapses it won’t be because we let too many “brown” people in the door; it will be because we lost so much confidence in our traditional values that we no longer felt them to be important enough to expect their acceptance by our immigrants and pass them on to our children.

    I have too much to do to be spending time writing blog comments today, but Joe’s post should not go unanswered in a blog that is normally as intelligent and civilized as this one.

  • The riots in England had little to do with race and a great deal to do with a womb to tomb welfare system that has created a completely dependent under class that has little interest in work or obeying laws. I will have a great deal more to say about this in a forthcoming post. It should be noted that some of the prime defenders against the riots, after an almost complete abidcation by the police, were ethnic shop keepers, including Sikhs and Turkish Kurds, something that Darwin noted in an earlier post.

  • You are correct, Don. What progressives don’t seem to understand is that as multiculturalism works to retard social advancement, the welfare state serves to retard economic advancement.

  • From my position as a public school teacher and very-semi-part-time Director of Religious Education for my Church parish: I truly believe that the disintegration of society and culture is in direct proportion to the decline of sacramental Baptism.

    We are living in a society that is becoming de-Sacramentalized at an alarmingly accelerating rate. In the public school where I teach, I’d say that easily 70% of the students are not baptized. Without the infusion of salvific grace into the souls of the members of our society, we are descending into the pagan darkness.

    As T. Shaw says, the problem is the “virtue gap”. Without the graces from the Sacraments, there can be no closing of this gap.

    N.B. – While I single out the Sacrament of Baptism, I do not mean to neglect the continued reception of the Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist. It’s only that Baptism is the entry-point into the Sacramental life.

  • Mike Petrik:

    If nothing else, history vindicates my position that so-called “diversity” weakens rather than strengthens America. Yes, it has such a warm and fuzzy connotation — “the melting pot, the salad bowl” — which are little more than euphemisms for a mishmash of races, religions, cultures and ethnic tribes that have splintered a foundation that was formed by Western philosophy and civilization solely.
    One prime example, from the Bible itself: In Rameses’ time, the Egyptians enslaved the Hebrews and kept them solely for economic reasons. They were never true “brothers,” and as separate religions and cultures, they were dissimilar in virtually all respects. Along comes Moses, who leads them to the “Promised Land,” wandering first for 40 years before finding their homeland, which today is largely modern Israel. Neither Moses nor his charges wanted to stay in Egypt, but rather were told by God Himself to get the hell out of there; which is what Moses and his heirs down through history have done. The Jews wanted and still want their own nation. As a people, they did not mix with others; secular history bears this out as well. They always were apart from Gentiles, a separate people, “chosen,” if you buy their raison d’etre, for a certain destiny.
    The negroes in America would have done well to follow Marcus Garvey back to Africa, like Moses did, leading themselves back to the lands of their birth, back to their “natural” environment; a continental of unmatched natural resources and one for which they are well suited and one that represents their racial heritage.
    I don’t know what you mean by “natural intermarriage.” Neither the Jews nor many other groups believe in intermarriage because they know it presents special problems including clouding the identities of children who grow up not knowing who they are. Inevitably, internal conflict arises. Some of these unions have been successful no doubt just as legal immigration has added to a flourishing nation, but the vast majority of these people were from Europe and were able to much better assimilate into America than others who crawled under fences illegally, refused to learn English, kept their own cultures and traditions and did not nor ever will become “Americans” but are merely here to either make money or start their own new tribal enclaves.
    Lastly, I see no “vileness” in comparing the human animal to those of a lower order because nature has much to teach us about human behavior. You view stems from the questionable position that animals, other than humans, lack a soul and have no concept of God. How do you know that? I have owned dogs all my life and have received more love and kindness from them than from most human beings. And God, if we are to believe Genesis, made the animals first and although we were given “dominion,” that does not equate to superiority.
    Everything great about America is drawn from Western Civilization, whose cradle was Europe, from the ancient Greeks and Romans down through the ages.

    I quote Seymour Martin Lipset who wrote: “The histories of bilingual and bicultural societies that do no assimilate are histories of turmoil, tension and tragedy.” Which is excerpted from Pat Buchanan’s book, “Day of Reckoning.”

    Pat wrote, “The United States, the greatest republic since Rome, and the British Empire, the greatest empire since Rome, may be said to have arisen from the three-cornered fort the Jamestown settlers began to build the day they arrived. But that republic and that empire did not rise because the settlers and those who followed believed in diversity, equality and democracy, but because they rejected diversity, equality and democracy…they believed in the superiority of their Christian faith and English culture and civilization. And they transplanted that unique faith, culture and civilization to America’s fertile soil. Other faiths, cultures and civilizations — like the ones the Indians had here or the Africans brought, or the French had planted in Quebec, or the Spanish in Mexico — they rejected and resisted with cannon, musket, and sword. This was OUR land, not anybody else’s. Buty today American and Britain have embraced ideas about the innate equality of all cultures, civilizations, languages and faiths, and about the mixing of all tribes, races, and peoples that are not only ahistorical, they are suicidal for America and the West.”
    An inconvenient truth, but the truth.

  • Joe, I find your comment a bit ironic in view of the fact that today’s Mass readings were all about how Christ expanded salvation beyond just the Jews to include the Gentiles. The Gospel was about the Canaanite woman who repeatedly begged Jesus to drive a demon out of her daughter, even though He rebuffed her twice, the second time saying that it was “not right to take the children’s bread and give it to the dogs.” Even so, her persistence was rewarded and Jesus granted her request.

    Obviously the issue of whether or not God intends to offer salvation to people of all cultures and nations is a separate issue from whether or not a particular nation ought or ought not to defend its own culture. And while Christ offers salvation to all, all have to accept it — they can’t just remain pagans or atheists. Nor can they cling to aspects of their native culture that are in direct opposition to Christian faith and morals (e.g., polygamy, voodoo, child sacrifice). Likewise, immigrants need to show loyalty to the laws and customs of this nation over the one they came from. Still, I think the Catholic faith, and the American way of life, offer plenty of room for people of different cultures to preserve what is good and unique about their culture or nation of origin.

  • The direction these comments have taken are especially interesting given today’s Scripture Readings:

    http://new.usccb.org/bible/readings/081411.cfm

    Now I am not one to believe that different cultures are equivalently good, equal in morals and virtues. That would make a mockery of what it means to be a Christian and to have a Christian culture. If one doesn’t believe that Christianity is infinitely superior to Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Taoism, etc., then is one a Christian?

    Of course now some will point out that culture is more than mere relgious affiliation, a sentiment with which I would agree. But to be Christian one must be wholly Christian, and it is this that gives rise to a culture that enabled the former greatness of Western Civilization, and it is its abandonment that now leads to our sad demise.

    Yes, there will inevitably be differences in the expression of what once was Christian culture – a European expression, an African expression, an Indian expression, a Japanese expression, etc. But the underlying root that makes Christian culture unique remains the same. Welcoming the foreigners who join themselves to the LORD (Isaiah 56:1-7), and serving the needs of the Canaanite woman (Matthew 15:21-28) are but expressions thereof. However, a multi-culturalism that equivocates Islam or Buddhism or Taoism as equal to Christianity is bound to fail, and it is such a multi-culturalism that the liberal left supports to the exclusion of the principles of Christianity. Indeed, Jesus said to the Canaanite woman, “…great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish.” He didn’t make the paganism of her culture (from which the demon who tormented her daughter had likely come) equivalent to Judaism, and she even KNEW which was superior, hence her faith in seeking out Jesus.

    Sorry, folks. I don’t buy into the idea that all cultures are equal in dignity. If that were the case, then we may as well sacrifice humans as the Central and South American Indians did so long ago. Oh, I forgot – we ARE doing such sacrifices and we call them “the right to choose.” Silly me!

  • Opps, Elaine said it better – darn cross-posting again.

  • Paul, just goes to prove that great minds think alike 🙂

  • Elaine, Beethoven would have “all men as brothers,” which he longed for in his great 9th Symphony. However, but for there to be the “brotherhood of man,” then what necessarily follows is “the fatherhood of God.” And those who do not believe in the same father cannot ipso facto ever be brothers in any sense of the word.

  • ‘The riots in England had little to do with race …’

    Really, Don?

  • Don, the London riots began in Tottenham described as having “a multicultural population, with many ethnic groups inhabiting the area. It contains one of the largest and most significant populations of African-Caribbean people. These were among the earliest immigrant groups to settle in the area, starting the UK’s Windrush era. Soon afterwards West African communities – notably the many Ghanaians – began to migrate into the area.”

    Connect the dots.

  • E. K., From our homilist, the Canaanite was not only persistent she evolved in Faith to which our Lord led her by his earlier rebuffs.

  • “Soon afterwards West African communities – notably the many Ghanaians – began to migrate into the area. Connect the dots.”

    If being of African descent were the problem, then Philip’s message to the Ethiopian eunuch in Acts 8:26-40 would have been fruitless and useless. But unlike the Ghanaians who immigrated to Britain, the eunuch wanted to learn. What made the difference was attitude and responsibility.

    As others have said, Britain has abandoned any pretense at being a Christian nation, and has willy-nilly opened its doors to all manner of paganism. The result is inevitable: a whole class of people without history or dignity utterly dependent on largess from the public treasury. Thus the plebians riot in the Roman forum, and thus Caligula tosses out gold coins to appease the masses. This is ancient history.

  • “Really, Don?”

    Yeah, really Joe. The rioters were of all races just as their victims were of all races. You can see that for yourself on You Tube videos of the looters.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNh-fTv1Gm8&feature=related

    Trying to make this about race misses completely the point of the riots. What the point of the riots is I will address in my post tomorrow.

  • C’mon, Don. The vid proves nothing; show about 10 people out of thousands who rioted, most of whom were from Tottenham, which is heavily black and muslim.

  • You are deeply wrong about this Joe. These were not race riots. What type of riots they were I will explain tomorrow. Stay tuned.

  • Don, I disagree, but look forward to your analysis.

  • The riots in England had little to do with race and a great deal to do with a womb to tomb welfare system that has created a completely dependent under class that has little interest in work or obeying laws.

    Long term doles for working-aged people do create social problems. However, per Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the descriptive statistics he was studying ca. 1965 indicated that an abiding dependent class emerged around about 1958. Prior to that, the population on relief rolls tracked unemployment rates closely. The underclass was a novelty during the riot mania of 1964-71, and continued to exist after rioting ceased to be common.

  • Mike’s 12:06 comment is one of the best things I have read on the internet in a long time.

  • Should note that there were masses of riots in the United States around about 1919, when common provision consisted mostly of institutional care and such (public schools, orphanages, asylums, sanitoriums, poorhouses, veterans’ hospitals). IIRC, outdoor relief was limited to benefits for veterans and their dependents.

  • Anyone want to guess the date of the deadliest urban riot in U.S. history? Let’s see, was it L.A. in 1992 (Rodney King)? How about Newark in ’67, or Watts in ’65? Was it Detroit in 1943, or even Chicago in 1919? Nope, not even close. The worst urban riot ever was the NYC anti-draft riot of 1863, at the height of the Civil War, in which at least 120 people died, and some estimates put the death toll as high as 2,000. According to Wikipedia,
    “The rioters were overwhelmingly working class men, resentful, among other reasons, because the draft unfairly affected them while sparing wealthier men, who could afford to pay a $300 commutation fee to exclude themselves from its reach.” Obviously, this was long before dependence on a government welfare state became an issue.

  • Elaine, the point being?

  • Actually the New York City draft riots of 1863 were a prime example of a race riot with largely Irish mobs murdering free blacks throughout the riots. A good overview is here:

    http://www.mapsites.net/gotham/es/_alexblankfein_es.htm

    There were other factors, such as the ones that Elaine mentions, but the racial element was unmistakable.

  • “Actually the New York City draft riots of 1863 were a prime example of a race riot with largely Irish mobs murdering free blacks throughout the riots.”

    Were those Irish mobs Catholic? I am sure that this is the very thing which today’s liberal atheists would love to point out.

  • Overwhelmingly so, and Archbishop “Dagger John” Hughes did his best to bring the riots to a close, in spite of the fact that he was nearing death.

    http://the-american-catholic.com/2009/02/11/honest-abe-and-dagger-john/

  • Thanks, Donald! From:

    http://www.city-journal.org/html/7_2_a2.html

    In 1863, with construction of the cathedral suspended because of the Civil War, the worst urban rioting in United States history broke out among the Irish in New York. Over 1,000 people were killed in three days. The Irish were enraged that the Union army was drafting them in disproportionate numbers because they could not afford the then legal practice of buying their way out of military service. Irish boys, who made up about 15 percent of the Union army, were suffering horrific casualty rates since they were commonly used as frontline troops against better-trained and better-led Confederate soldiers. In addition, rumors spread that once the slaves were freed, they would take Irish jobs or live off taxes on the Irish. The rioting Irish attacked blacks, nativists, and, on the third day, anybody who was around.

    A then-dying Archbishop Hughes summoned the leaders of the rebellion to meet with him. However disturbed he might have been that the Irish were being called on to do so much of the dying in the struggle against the South, he supported the war and was totally opposed to slavery, having preached against it since his ordination as a priest in 1826. He told the riot leaders that “no blood of innocent martyrs, shed by Irish Catholics, has ever stained the soil of Ireland” and that they were dishonoring that impeccable history.

    The riot leaders went back to their neighborhoods, and the violence melted away. The riot saddened the dying archbishop: he felt he had failed as a prelate. His friend and loyal subordinate, Bishop McCloskey, was saying the prayers for the dying when the end came for Hughes on January 3, 1864.

    —–

    Sadly, it seems that London, Liverpool, Birmingham and elsewhere are lacking in heroes like Archbishop Hughes.

  • The youth are rioting because of right-wing greed. Taking away regulations so that the wealthy become wealthier and the poor become poorer.

    ” …I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

    Parallel versions appear in Matthew 19:23-24, Mark 10:24-25, and Luke 18:24-25.

  • “The youth are rioting because of right-wing greed. Taking away regulations so that the wealthy become wealthier and the poor become poorer.”

    Yeah, looting a shop in Brixton is a stand against right-wing greed.

  • “The youth are rioting because of right-wing greed. Taking away regulations so that the wealthy become wealthier and the poor become poorer.”

    We’ve heard that story before – John 12:1-6:

    Jesus therefore, six days before the pasch, came to Bethania, where Lazarus had been dead, whom Jesus raised to life. And they made him a supper there: and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that were at table with him. Mary therefore took a pound of ointment of right spikenard, of great price, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair; and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment. Then one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, he that was about to betray him, said: Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor? Now he said this, not because he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and having the purse, carried the things that were put therein.

    —–

    Note the phrase: “Now he said this, not because he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and having the purse, carried the things that were put therein.”

    That’s what every liberal leftist wants – the same thing that Judas Iscariot wanted: the money. They care not and have never cared for the poor.

  • “That’s what every liberal leftist wants – the same thing that Judas Iscariot wanted: the money. They care not and have never cared for the poor.”

    The taxes do not go to liberals, they go to programs to help the poor meet minimum living standards. The Gospel of Judas by the way shows that he was simply fulfilling a role to make Jesus’ prophecy complete.

  • “Yeah, looting a shop in Brixton is a stand against right-wing greed”

    It is a direct correlation. If today’s children (and adults for that matter) did not have to compete with slave wages-a direct result of corporations outsourcing their manufacturing and customer service, they would have no need to riot.

    Republicans/Cons do not understand that just because it increases profits does not make it the right thing to do, greed has repercussions on everyone.

  • The Gospel of Judas is heretical and NOT a part of the Canon of Sacred Scripture. Period.

    Now every so often an offensive is mounted by the proponents of the false gospel of social justice and peace at any price – in other words, liberal leftists. These proponents rarely if ever talk about God’s justice in the manner that Jeremiah, Ezekiel, John the Baptist, St. Peter, St. Paul or St. John talked about God’s justice. To them mercy is feeding the belly, not saving souls from eternal damnation. So when these offensives occur it becomes necessary to repeat what the TRUTH is.

    When the crowd which had been fed the loaves and fishes followed Jesus around the Lake of Galilee to Capernaum, what happened? John 6:24-27 tells us:

    “When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into boats and came to Capernaum looking for Jesus. And when they found him across the sea they said to him, ‘Rabbi, when did you get here?’ Jesus answered them and said, ‘Amen, amen, I say to you, you are looking for me not because you saw signs but because you ate the loaves and were filled. Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him the Father, God, has set his seal.'”

    The crowd, having gotten free food without working for it, expected a continuation of the same. But Jesus told them NOT to seek the food that perishes, but the Bread of Life, and that is EXACTLY what the crowd did NOT want. Indeed, John 6:66 records that even many of Jesus’ disciples refused to follow Him any longer. The same is true today. When the mindless, faceless collective – that is to say, the crowd – doesn’t get its free food for the belly, then it abandons the very One from whom all good things come. It is time to see things as they are: get people used to handouts, and they won’t work for themselves.

    In the Church at Thessalonica, some parishioners became so enamoured with the promise of Christ’s Second Coming that they stopped working for a living. They expected that the rest of the community, being so imbued with a sense of social justice, would continue to provide for their needs, food as well as medical, without them earning a darn thing. What did St. Paul say about this kind of behavior? 2nd Thessalonians 3:10 says, “In fact, when we were with you, we instructed you that if anyone was unwilling to work, neither should that one eat.” St. Paul’s social justice was very simple: get off your lazy behinds and get back to work.

    Now yes, we all know that there are a great many sad situations in life, e.g., where a single mother hasn’t enough money for herself and her children, or an elderly person is without enough money for food and heating in the winter, or a thousand other examples. In situations like these we the members of the Body of Christ – NOT the Federal Government – are called to do our God-given duty, and every time we abdicate our responsibility to Caesar to provide for the poor, the destitute and the disenfrancised, then we surrended our authority and our freedom as children of the Living God Almighty. Caesar and his politicians can never ever be trusted to meet the needs of the poor. That is our job. The story of the sheep and the goats in Matthew 25:31-46 was given to the disciples, NOT the Senators in Rome, nor the advisors and lawyers and accountants surrounding Tiberius at the Imperial Palace. The story is for US the members of the Body of Christ. But that little fact is never mentioned by the proponents of the false gospel of social justice and peace at any price.

    Let us now take the story of the rich man who came to inquire of Jesus what he had to do to inherit eternal life. The story is in Mark 10:17-23. Jesus told him he had to obey the law and the prophets. The man replied he had done so all his life. Jesus then said that he lacked one thing and had to sell all his belongings and give the proceeds to the poor. The man went away sorrowful. Jesus commented, “How hard it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” The point clearly had nothing to do with feeding the poor; rather, the point was the idol of possessions that the rich man had placed between himself and God. Never once did Jesus tell the disciples to confiscate the rich man’s belongings to acheive some kind of social justice. Never once did Jesus say Tiberius Caesar and the Roman Senate had tax the rich and redistribute that tax money to the poor. So where do these adherents of the false gospel of social justice and peace at any price derive their sacrilege of advocating the Federal Government to steal from those who earn to give to those who don’t. I have a feeling that it’s really because these liberal progressives don’t want to get their personal hands dirty feeding the poor, giving drink to the thirsty, caring for the sick, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, and visiting the imprisoned. That’s for someone else to do. After all, these advocates of social justice are the elite and can’t possibly be bothered with the hard work of actually helping out those in need.

  • “It is a direct correlation. If today’s children (and adults for that matter) did not have to compete with slave wages-a direct result of corporations outsourcing their manufacturing and customer service, they would have no need to riot.”

    Need to riot? No one needs electronic toys and high end sneakers and clothes which were among the targets of the rioters. Of course the rioters also destroyed the jobs of the workers who worked in the looted stores. None of this had anything to do with any Leftist delusional protest against Big Business and everything to do with greed, a facet of human behavior that was on full display by the looters. I do enjoy your forthrightness, however, in condoning rioting and looting. It is refreshing to see a Leftist come clean and stand up for mass criminality if it can be dressed up in ideological cant.

  • Based on what Donald just posted, I have to correct what I wrote. I said:

    “So where do these adherents of the false gospel of social justice and peace at any price derive their sacrilege of advocating the Federal Government to steal from those who earn to give to those who don’t? I have a feeling that it’s really because these liberal progressives don’t want to get their personal hands dirty feeding the poor, giving drink to the thirsty, caring for the sick, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, and visiting the imprisoned. That’s for someone else to do.”

    I should have said that these liberal progressives won’t get their hands dirty helping others because they would rather steal from everyone else by rioting and committing other acts of violence. They create with their rioting the poor, the thirsty, the sick, the homeless, the naked and certainly the imprisoned. After all, this is only a natural extension of the violence that they legally commit against the unborn.

    Democracy: two wolves and one sheep voting on what’s for dinner, in this case, your store, your bank, your place of work, even your unborn baby.

  • @Paul

    The Gospel of Judas is heretical and NOT a part of the Canon of Sacred Scripture. Period. For one the Scrolls were not found until 1944 so of course they were not included, but we both know they wouldn’t have been anyway as anything that goes up against the propaganda by the orthodox church is oppressed-why do you think we have so many offshoots of Christianity even dating back to the formation of Christianity?

    Now every so often an offensive is mounted by the proponents of the false gospel (I can say the same of Catholic dogma) of social justice and peace at any price – in other words, liberal leftists (Jesus’ parables parallel those of modern day liberals, he was in no way a money hungry corporatist). These proponents rarely if ever talk about God’s justice in the manner that Jeremiah, Ezekiel, John the Baptist, St. Peter, St. Paul or St. John talked about God’s justice. To them mercy is feeding the belly, not saving souls (turning away from Greed must be done before you can turn to God) from eternal damnation. So when these offensives occur it becomes necessary to repeat what the TRUTH is (lets hear YOUR version…).

    When the crowd which had been fed the loaves and fishes followed Jesus around the Lake of Galilee to Capernaum, what happened? John 6:24-27 tells us:

    “When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into boats and came to Capernaum looking for Jesus. And when they found him across the sea they said to him, ‘Rabbi, when did you get here?’ Jesus answered them and said, ‘Amen, amen, I say to you, you are looking for me not because you saw signs but because you ate the loaves and were filled. Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life (replace the noun food with money and the meaning does not change), which the Son of Man will give you. For on him the Father, God, has set his seal.’”

    The crowd, having gotten free food without working for it, expected a continuation of the same (nice try!). But Jesus told them NOT to seek the food that perishes (again replace food with money), but the Bread of Life, and that is EXACTLY what the crowd did NOT want (they wanted profits and thus power of others). Indeed, John 6:66 records that even many of Jesus’ disciples refused to follow Him any longer. The same is true today. When the mindless, faceless collective (the Tea Party?) – that is to say, the crowd (mob rule, gotcha!) – doesn’t get its free food (money off the back of others) for the belly, then it abandons the very One from whom all good things come. It is time to see things as they are: get people used to handouts, and they won’t work for themselves. (This is not the meaning of that verse whatsoever, do you really think Jesus was talking about being dependent on others for food? If so you need to retake a basic New Testament class).

    In the Church at Thessalonica, some parishioners became so enamoured with the promise of Christ’s Second Coming that they stopped working for a living. They expected that the rest of the community, being so imbued with a sense of social justice, would continue to provide for their needs, food as well as medical, without them earning a darn thing (ironic that Church’s are exempt from taxes do you think?) . What did St. Paul say about this kind of behavior? 2nd Thessalonians 3:10 says, “In fact, when we were with you, we instructed you that if anyone was unwilling to work, neither should that one eat.” (First of all , no one is not willing to work, that is a lie. If you give someone a decent job at a livable wage they will and want to work but all the jobs continue to be outsourced by the wealthy so they can pocket the extra profits just like they did five years ago when they were told they would not be taxed on oversea profits-they did not trickle down the profits to their brothers and sisters, no they pocketed the change. That is what we have today an idle rich who cares only for themselves). St. Paul’s social justice was very simple: get off your lazy behinds and get back to work. (St. Paul’s social justice was to keep women in the household and subservient to men-see Michelle Bachman’s recent comments about her role to her (gay) husband).

    Now yes, we all know that there are a great many sad situations in life, e.g., where a single mother hasn’t enough money for herself and her children, or an elderly person is without enough money for food and heating in the winter, or a thousand other examples. In situations like these we the members of the Body of Christ – NOT the Federal Government – are called to do our God-given duty, and every time we abdicate our responsibility to Caesar to provide for the poor, the destitute and the disenfrancised, then we surrended our authority and our freedom as children of the Living God Almighty (its unrealistic and if this was so why do so many in the richest country in the world live in poverty and can’t afford basic healthcare?) Caesar and his politicians can never ever be trusted to meet the needs of the poor (Caesar didn’t live in a Democracy). That is our job (and hence why WE elect politicians in our proxy). The story of the sheep and the goats in Matthew 25:31-46 was given to the disciples, NOT the Senators in Rome, nor the advisors and lawyers and accountants surrounding Tiberius at the Imperial Palace. The story is for US the members of the Body of Christ. But that little fact is never mentioned by the proponents of the false gospel (whose to say what is false and what is real-is it this or that version of Christianity, or maybe Buddhism, or even God forbid Islam!) of social justice and peace at any price.

    Let us now take the story of the rich man who came to inquire of Jesus what he had to do to inherit eternal life. The story is in Mark 10:17-23. Jesus told him he had to obey the law and the prophets. The man replied he had done so all his life. Jesus then said that he lacked one thing and had to sell all his belongings and give the proceeds to the poor. The man went away sorrowful. Jesus commented, “How hard it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” The point clearly had nothing to do with feeding the poor; rather, the point was the idol of possessions that the rich man had placed between himself and God (fits the bill of modern day wealthy in American, no?). Never once did Jesus tell the disciples to confiscate the rich man’s belongings to acheive some kind of social justice (yeah, he kinda did-the Kingdom of God is right in front of you (i.e. we are living in it)-remember that? ). Never once did Jesus say Tiberius Caesar and the Roman Senate had tax the rich and redistribute that tax money to the poor. So where do these adherents of the false gospel of social justice and peace at any price derive their sacrilege of advocating the Federal Government to steal from those who earn to give to those who don’t (it is unreasonable to think that republicans would give to those who need it. Think about it..you guys would not have your giant military that you are so proud of if it wasn’t for forced taxes). I have a feeling that it’s really because these liberal progressives don’t want to get their personal hands dirty feeding the poor, giving drink to the thirsty, caring for the sick, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, and visiting the imprisoned (that’s because liberals are all those things, can a poor man help another poor man?). That’s for someone else to do (everyone collectively). After all, these advocates of social justice are the elite (so the Koch brothers are not elite? You know the guys who funded Scott Walker to take away collective bargaining rights of the unions so they can make a modest salary and suppor their families?) and can’t possibly be bothered with the hard work of actually helping out those in need (because the rich in this country work so much harder than everyone else, pfft.).

  • @Donald
    ” It is refreshing to see a Leftist come clean and stand up for mass criminality if it can be dressed up in ideological cant.”

    You are right, looting bad-wars good (as long as we are killing farmers in other countries who want nothing to do with capitalism) no matter how much taxes they cost us (BY FAR THE BIGGEST TAX VACUUM in this country).

    Looting stores to prove a point bad-Killing hundreds of people for profit good! Right-wing hypocrisy at its finest!

  • @Paul:

    Democracy: two wolves and one sheep voting on what’s for dinner, in this case, your store, your bank, your place of work, even your unborn baby.

    Republican Democracy: the best money can buy!

  • My point, Joe, is that this riot took place long before the liberal welfare state and the collapse of the traditional family ever became an issue so we can’t say that continuing, or getting rid of, the welfare state will necessarily prevent riots from happening.

    Plus, the 1863 draft riots took place at a time when divorce and INTENTIONAL single parenthood as we know it today were not nearly as common. There were, of course, many fatherless/orphaned children but that was mostly a result of the high mortality rates of the day, not because vast numbers of women consciously chose to have babies outside of marriage or did not care whether or not their child’s father was marriage material. Yes, out of wedlock births did happen even then but I doubt they were anywhere near as prevalent as they are today.

  • “Looting stores to prove a point bad-Killing hundreds of people for profit good! Right-wing hypocrisy at its finest!”

    The left has murdered 60 million babies since Roe v Wade. That’s an order of magnitude more than the Jews whom Hitler murdered.

    As to the rest, truthfully I have neither the time nor the energy to debate a committed leftist. Neither one of us will change our minds. I will leave by pointing out that it’s not the job of government to be god, but that’s what liberals have always wanted since Judas Iscariot stole from the money bag. I have now said my peace.

    PS, Thank God we have a 2nd Amendment: the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. It’s a wonderful deterrent against rioters.

  • The recent riots in France demonstrate the problem European countries face where second and third generation immigrants still do not consider themselves French, German, or English. –Bobby Jindal

    If I’m not mistaken, Bobby is one of yours on the right.

  • The left has murdered 60 million babies since Roe v Wade. That’s an order of magnitude more than the Jews whom Hitler murdered. (That is just an ignorant statement).

    As to the rest, truthfully I have neither the time nor the energy to debate a committed leftist (because you can not win and it makes you question your own beliefs, hard to look in the mirror, easier to go on a right-wing blog where everyone agrees). Neither one of us will change our minds. I will leave by pointing out that it’s not the job of government to be god (nope its the job of the people to be God like Jesus said he is within us and us within Him), but that’s what liberals have always wanted since Judas Iscariot stole from the money bag (Again Judas was simply fulfilling the Jewish prophecy of the 30 gold pieces Zechariah chapter 11: Verse 12-13, 30) . I have now said my peace.

    PS, Thank God we have a 2nd Amendment: the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. It’s a wonderful deterrent against rioters. (how Christian of you, Guns and Jesus!).

  • Correction on that Judas comment, 30 silver pieces.

  • “You are right, looting bad-wars good”

    Please. The decline of the ability to reason on the Left continues apace. Wars come in all shapes and sizes, some just and some unjust. Rioting and looting are always per se evil. Any more non sequiturs you wish to toss out to defend the indefensible?

  • And this from Martin Luther King Jr.:

    The limitation of riots, moral questions aside, is that they cannot win and their participants know it. Hence, rioting is not revolutionary but reactionary because it invites defeat. It involves an emotional catharsis, but it must be followed by a sense of futility.

  • You’re right – you do anger me. Leftism has destroyed just about everything that has made this country great. Leftism has so de-Christianized our society that murdering the unborn and sanctifying homosexual filth and destroying the family and adultery and fornication and pornography are all not just tolerated, but extolled as virtues. So yes, I do get angry when I see the nation I love ravanged by this godlessness. In cases like that, it’s best I hold my tongue and not say how I really feel because obviously I am not thinking with my head. I grieve for what you people are doing to this nation with your immorality and baby-murdering, and the grief is so great that it becomes anger; thus, I will let those more dispassionate than me explain.

    Now it’s time for me to pray the Rosary. I will pray for you.

  • “You are right, looting bad-wars good”

    Please. The decline of the ability to reason on the Left continues apace. Wars come in all shapes and sizes. Some just and some unjust. Rioting and looting are always per se evil. Any more non sequiturs you wish to toss out to defend the indefensible?

    Citizens don’t typically tend to have a standing army so they have to riot when they are being oppressed. Was the riots in Egypt wrong?

    Every single war in the United States was for strictly business purposes. Stealing land from the Indians and Mexicans (yes those illegals you guys hate so much whom were here before whites), World War 1 and 2 we didn’t want to get into but they were strictly business favors and support for them was only built on false flag operations just as Vietnam and the Iraq fiasco we are currently in.

    People on the right love war. It’s good business.

  • Post Script

    “how Christian of you, Guns and Jesus”

    There is nothing wrong in defending one’s self, one’s family and one’s home against mindless baboons rioting for a new pair of sneakers or the next iPod gadget.

  • Your understanding of American history is as minimal as your clarity on the concept of “Thou Shalt Not Steal”. Really, is this the best you can do to defend rampant criminality?

  • Don, cue up the Twilight Zone music for the guy on the left.

  • “There is nothing wrong in defending one’s self, one’s family and one’s home against mindless baboons rioting for a new pair of sneakers or the next iPod gadget.”

    So you agree that the people in Afganistan and Iraq are justified for killing American troops because they are invaded their land so we can sell them sneakers and iPod gadgets?

  • @Joe

    Ever hear about the Gulf of Tonkin? Before you start playing the Twilight Music perhaps you should http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_of_Tonkin_Incident

    Also, I find it ironic that the guy who believes in talking snakes, that God came down here born from a virgin and died to save us from our sins says I deserve the Twilight Music.

  • @Joe
    Twilight music for you and those who believe Iraq had anything to do with 9/11 or had “weapons of mass destruction”.

  • “So you agree that the people in Afganistan and Iraq are justified for killing American troops because they are invaded their land…”

    What about liberal Democrats who invade the womb to murder babies? 60 million innocent babies murdered. Far, far more than all who have died in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    PS, no, I do NOT advocate blowing up abortion clinics or shooting abortion doctors in the head. I advocate prayer and peaceful resistance. But if I operated from the logic that liberals operate from, then I would feel entirely justified in so rioting.

  • Lefty, I’m the house agnostic so you’ll get nowhere arguing religion with me. As for the Gulf of Tonkin, I remember it vividly. I was sitting in Shea Stadium watching a Mets game when the message board lit up with the announcement and the whole stadium cheered. As Reagan said, Vietnam was a “noble cause” which cost 58,000 American lives and thousands more maimed. To denigrate their sacrifice by asserting that the U.S. fights wars solely for “business reasons” is the worse sort of calumny.

  • “Also, I find it ironic that the guy who believes in talking snakes, that God came down here born from a virgin and died to save us from our sins says I deserve the Twilight Music.”

    That is hilarious! Joe is our resident agnostic. Additionally he is probably as sceptical about the justification of most American wars as you are, but unlike you he can make intelligent arguments to support his positions and he does not attempt to justify criminality thereby.

  • “As Reagan said, Vietnam was a “noble cause” which cost 58,000 American lives and thousands more maimed. To denigrate their sacrifice by asserting that the U.S. fights wars solely for “business reasons” is the worse sort of calumny.”

    Well said Joe!

  • @Don
    “That is hilarious! Joe is our resident agnostic.”

    Well if not for him, he is for sure playing the twilight music for the wrong person!

  • P.S. I also proudly served in the U.S. Navy, 1959-63, during the Cuban missile crisis when JFK stood up to the Soviets. Had he not done so, Lefty might be drinking vodka these days instead of baby formula.

  • @Don and Joe

    “As Reagan said, Vietnam was a “noble cause” which cost 58,000 American lives and thousands more maimed. To denigrate their sacrifice by asserting that the U.S. fights wars solely for “business reasons” is the worse sort of calumny.”

    Reagan was a corporate controlled president (see the head of Merill Lynch telling him he had to hurry up and wrap up his speech at the opening of Wall Street http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/09/17/michael-moores-capitalism_n_289868.html

    It was a waste of time! Who cares if another country wants communism and not right-wing capitalistic pigs running their country! Are you serious? It is NONE of our business to go over there. That’s why we had riots in the 60s (there is a good riot reference).

    Republican thinking is crazy.

  • @Joe

    “P.S. I also proudly served in the U.S. Navy, 1959-63, during the Cuban missile crisis when JFK stood up to the Soviets. Had he not done so, Lefty might be drinking vodka these days instead of baby formula.”

    At least we would have universal health care instead of paying these health insurance crooks!

  • Michael Moore and the Huff and puff post — now there are two reliable, objective sources, both of whom are multimillionaires thanks to the capitalism you denounce.

  • “Reagan said, Vietnam was a “noble cause” which cost 58,000 American lives and thousands more maimed. To denigrate their sacrifice by asserting that the U.S. fights wars solely for “business reasons” is the worse sort of calumny.”

    You can try to justify their deaths all you want, the TRUTH is that they died for another worthless BS Capitalist war. I hope they are reincarnated and come back as liberal hippies, heck I may be one of them!

  • @Joe
    “Michael Moore and the Huff and puff post — now there are two reliable, objective sources, both of whom are multimillionaires thanks to the capitalism you denounce.”

    The clip is of Regan, they are simply showing it. If they showed a picture of the sky being blue you would mock it.

  • @Lefty, if there’s hope for an old sinner like me, there is for you, too. These folks on TAC are your best chance to regain your political and spiritual balance. Like you, I am a doubter and skeptic and the regulars here can attest to that. But keep an open mind and heart and some day you may find the answers. I’m almost there, but not quite…

  • @Joe
    Christianity is just a hodgepodge of various older religions with an emphasis on fulfilling old Judaism “prophecies”. If you want to save your soul you need to look at the truth, which is on the left ;).

  • “Reagan was a corporate controlled president”

    That is truly a laugh. Reagan was the insurgent Republican candidate, as he demonstrated in 1976 when he almost toppled in the primaries a sitting Republican president. In 1980 the establishment candidate for the Republicans was George Bush. Reagan was the candidate of Main Street not Wall Street.

    “Who cares if another country wants communism and not right-wing capitalistic pigs running their country!”

    Your lack of sympathy for the 100,000,000 your ideological soul mates murdered in the last century is only to be expected.

    If you are going to troll around this website we do have standards. Your arguments must be carefully thought out and fact based. Mere bloviation and repetition of meaningless talking points will not be tolerated. They violate the first rule of blogging: Thou Shalt Not Bore. If you can’t do much better than we have seen tonight you will be banned from this website as a service to our faithful readers.

  • @Lefty…If you want to understand Christianity you must look at at the person of Christ, the most unique person in all of history. “Never a man spake like this.” He and He alone is what keeps me from rejecting the faith. As Augustine said, we must have faith to understand, not understand to have faith.
    It’s a journey, my future friend, and we each make our steps in our own way.

  • Don, don’t give up on him. You haven’t on me and I’m still out there among the lost.

  • @Don on Regan (this was written in 1986):

    There is an interesting ideology maturing in Reagan’s Washington these days. It is best called “corporatism.”

    Here is an example. For years Ronald Reagan would speak against mandatory seat belt use laws and mandatory motorcycle helmet use laws. Long before he was president he would give these proposals as prime examples of a meddling Big Brother. I heard him orate this way during a debate with him in 1975.

    About two years ago, General Motors decided to reverse its policy and begin pushing state legislatures to pass laws requiring motorists to buckle up. The auto giant decided to launch this expensive lobbying drive in order to tap a provision in the federal standard requiring crash protection by stages in cars beginning with next year’s models. That provision says that if states with two-thirds of the population pass mandatory seat belt laws, the federal standard protecting all motorists would be revoked. Not surprisingly, GM was behind that provision as well.

    Voila, Ronald Reagan suddenly became a supporter of mandatory seat belt laws.

    But there is no corporate pressure behind mandatory helmet use laws. So Ronald Reagan, whose White House aides keep a tight control over Secretary Elizabeth Dole and her Transportation Department, shows no interest in restoring a federal requirement that could save at least 1500 motorcycle riders killed every year because they were not wearing helmets, along with rescuing a larger number of brain damaged survivors in such crashes.

    The corporatist imperative is not operating on Mr. Reagan to put life-saving helmets on motorcycle drivers and their passengers. Study after study concludes that motorcycle helmet use laws greatly reduce deaths and injuries in such crashes. Unhelmeted riders have 2 1/2 to 6 times as many critical or fatal head injuries as riders who wear helmets, according to a Department of Transportation report.

    The data also shows that motorcyclists overwhelmingly obey laws requiring that helmets be worn. Surveys of motorcyclists’ opinions conclude that from 40 to 81 percent favor helmet use laws, while the general public registers even higher rates of approval.

    The Transportation Department in 1967 issued a standard saying that if states did not enact helmet use laws, they would be penalized with a 10 percent reduction in federal highway funds. By 1975, 47 states passed the laws, saving many young lives and injuries all the way. The motorcycle fatality rate per 100 million miles traveled had declined 49 percent from 1967 to 1975 and hundreds of millions of tax dollars for disability payments were saved.

    Then Congress flipped. In a tragically quirky move it amended the law to repeal the financial penalty. Today only 20 states have use laws. Most of the rest repealed their requirement for riders above 18 years of age. Seven states have no requirement at all. Blood and brains hit the highway with sharply increasing frequency. Neurosurgeons became sick at the spectacle of youths lying before them in hospital surgery rooms. Last year, 4570 motorcycle riders lost their lives.

    The head injury rates, according to the Department, ranged from about 50 percent to almost 200 percent greater in the post-repeal period than in the pre-repeal period for the various states. Another Department study reported that “the use of a safety helmet is the single critical factor in the prevention or reduction of head injury.”

    Now, if the motorcycle manufacturers, led by Honda whose founder,

    Mr. Honda spends his retirement advancing traffic safety, were to demand that Reagan move on helmet use laws, the corporatists imperative would register once again. Off the handlebars would go the President’s conservative compunctions. Such is the variable that spells life or death for many young Americans and huge sums for the taxpayers to expend on hospital, rehabilitation and other costs. In the meantime the facts simmer.

  • “The great craze of the day, the sect of the theophilanthropists, the jiloux em, troupe, as Talleyrand used to call them, excited his bitterest ridicule. The founder of it was Haiiy, a brother of the wellknown physicist; but its most zealous apostle was the Director Reveillere. The latter submitted to the Institute a memorandum in favour of a confession of faith drawn up by him which enjoined the commemoration of the three great acts of life—birth, marriage, and death. Talleyrand listened to it attentively, and then said drily that he had only one remark to make: to found his religion Jesus Christ had been crucified and had risen from the dead, and he advised the would-be founder of this new religion to do the same.”

  • Picture this. The USA, figuratively, is a large row boat with 50 people. Obama is at the tiller. He shouts to the 24 people pulling at the sweeps, “Pull harder!”

    I bet imagine truthy is one of the 39% of Americans that report Obama is doing an “acceptable” job.

    Unlike St. Augustine, I don’t need to endure or answer such idiots.

  • @T.Shaw

    “I bet imagine truthy is one of the 39% of Americans that report Obama is doing an “acceptable” job.”

    Obama bends over to far for the right. He should have got us out of these two useless wars by now and should got rid of the Bush Tax cut. You guys want to lower the deficit (only when a Dem is in office, especially a half-black one at that-which is really the issue) then you should agree to end the wars and raise revenues by getting rid of the Bush tax cuts, especially on the wealthiest Americans (and also close corporate loopholes).

    Obama is being labeled as far-left but in fact he is a centrist. All you guys have to point to is the health care reform which you mock by calling it “Obama-care” when in reality it is exactly the same as Mitt Romney bill and I didn’t hear you guys whining about how unconstitutional that was. Fact is, we are the only first rate nation without universal healthcare because those on the right do whatever the rich want them to and think what they want them to think.

    The truth is that those on the right are easily manipulated by right-wing corporate controlled media such as Fox News and Tea Party Patriots (thanks for the downgrade by the way).

    If Obama wasn’t half-black no doubt he wouldn’t be getting it so bad from you guys.

  • “Don on Regan (this was written in 1986):”

    You got this from the Nader website. Pardon me if I doubt that qualifies as objective analysis.

  • @Don

    “You got this from the Nader website. Pardon me if I doubt that qualifies as objective analysis.”

    Irregardless of the source, the fact remains that Regan flipped flopped due based on what the corporate money masters told him to do.

    Also, how do I add a picture to this site for my profile pic?

  • In regard to the clip from Moore’s proganda fest, I assume that he does not understand that one of the jobs of a Chief of Staff, which is what Regan was at the time, includes trying to keep the President on schedule. Regan resigned in 1987 largely due to clashes with Nancy Reagan. Rather than a puppet master, Regan had less influence in the White House than Reagan’s wife.

  • @ Don are you saying that Regan was a chief of staff? He was the President at that time and the guy telling him to move along was not a chief of staff but was the CEO of Merrill Lynch!

  • Lefty, in context, Regan was telling him to speed it up simply because the whole event was timed to coincide with the opening bell. Stop trying to make it into some grand conspiracy, and also you would improve your credibility if you would refrain from citing well-worn and hackneyed sources such as Michael Moore.

  • “Irregardless of the source, the fact remains that Regan flipped flopped due based on what the corporate money masters told him to do.”

    No actually it was due to strong opposition in Congress to Reagan’s crusade against mandatory seat belt laws. The story is set forth here.

    http://www.fiberpipe.net/~tiktin/Documents/seatbeltskill.htm

    As for a pic for your profile go to Gravatar:

    http://en.gravatar.com/

  • “He was the President at that time and the guy telling him to move along was not a chief of staff but was the CEO of Merrill Lynch!”

    Wrong. Donald Regan was CEO of Merrill Lynch prior to the Reagan being elected President. He was Secretary of the Treasury during the first Reagan administration, and Chief of Staff in the second Reagan administration until he resigned in 1987.

  • @ Don

    Ok he was chief of staff at the time, I concur. Chief of Staff from 1985 to 1987 in the Ronald Reagan Administration, where he advocated “Reaganomics” and tax cuts to create jobs and stimulate production.

    So we see the same rhetoric of tax cuts to create jobs was a corporatist slogan back in the mid-80s which we know didn’t work then and certainly do not work now.

  • Lefttwoofy:

    Yeah! Didn’t he promise the useless idiots he’d make peace?

    What do YOU call it when the government orders citizens to buy something?

    If Obama was not a low-life, socialist agitator we would not give it to him so bad . . . Moron

  • The whole point of Moore including the clip in the film was to give a wholly false impression that Regan was ordering Reagan about when Regan was actually just hired help. Reagan implemented economic policies that brought America a financial boom that lasted for decades. The contrast with the failed economic policies of Obama is stark. That the American people agreed that Reagan’s policies worked was signified in the 1984 election when Reagan recieved a 49 state landslide, Mondale barely winning his homestate of Minnesota.

Saving Civilization One Word at a Time

Saturday, August 13, AD 2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the end of the world was long ago,

And all we dwell today

As children of some second birth,

Like a strange people left on earth

After a judgment day.

For the end of the world was long ago,

When the ends of the world waxed free,

When Rome was sunk in a waste of slaves,

And the sun drowned in the sea.

When Caesar’s sun fell out of the sky

And whoso hearkened right

Could only hear the plunging

Of the nations in the night.

G.K. Chesterton

 

Something for the Weekend.  From the endlessly talented songsters at Music For History Lovers, Illuminated Manuscripts sung to the tune of Nowhere Man by the Beatles.  Monks toiling in Scriptoriums in monasteries throughout Europe during the Middle Ages and thereby rescuing some of the classic works of Antiquity is  a cliche, but a true cliche.  When the secular world of the Western Empire dissolved in chaos and ruin following the babarian invasions, it was the Church that rescued the lamp of knowledge.  Only an institution like the Church, a rock in the river of time, could century following century ensure the survival and copying of manuscripts that preserved a precious fraction of the writings of Greece and Rome.  Jerusalem rescued Athens.

Continue reading...

10 Responses to Saving Civilization One Word at a Time

  • Father John Jalopy (The Big Bad Wolf) has something to add to all of this. See his new videos exhorting us all to progress the Faith:

    THE NUCLEAR WASTE OF THE SOUL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0MlsAY4fsmg

    “PERMISSIVE PARENTING”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-YC6nv3t_o

    “THE DANGER OF DANGERS”

  • You’re touched, Donald! 😉 But I enjoyed the videos, nevertheless!

  • Perhaps the lines should be read as Anglo-Saxon four-beat lines. Cf. “Seafarer,” BEOWULF, and Coleridge’s “Christabel.”

  • And there is still more ancient works occasionally found saved in the monastic libraries of Europe. But ask anyone, the Catholic Church is against knowledge and learning.

  • There are people more touched than Donald R. McClarey!

    Father John Jalopy! By ye gods! Absolutely fantastic! I gotta stop laughing before I bust open my gut!

  • That comedy clip is brilliant 😆
    I wonder how many other situations could be dreamt up to apply the same thinking?

  • Don

    The second video is pitch perfect, I have loved it ever since I first saw it.

    At least Brother Tech Person did not have to explain that it works better if you jush push the button that says “Off/on” in a friendly and helpful tone of voice.

  • Or the ever popular, “Did you plug it in?” 🙂

  • Interesting….Christianity preserved knowledge and fostered learning. The world had grown old and weary (to paraphrase Chesterton), and Christianity breathed new life into it. Yes, this is marvellous.

  • And right about now we’re getting tired of programs, schemes and of planning. Tired of building and of projects. People can’t reason well anymore. People don’t know how to live life. And only Christianity can help. Only Christ can rescue the individual. More often than not, it’s that very brokenness that leads us to God, drawing us closer and closer to Him. Otherwise we’d be fine. We’d ignore Him, too wrapped up in ourselves and allthat we have and do. No, I would not lament decline. Of course it’s never enjoyable. But anything that brings people closer to God and further away from themselves is profitable beyond measure.

Hey, You Filthy Right-Wing Bigots: Stop the Hate!

Friday, August 12, AD 2011

Ah, but Klavan on the Culture, Conservatives, because of their ideas, are by definition always uncivil, while Liberals are always civil, at least according to the Mainstream Media, also known as the Media fewer and fewer people pay attention to.  Ed Morrissey at Hot Air took a look at an example of this recently:

 

 

“Froma Harrop, a member of The [Providence] Journal’s editorial board and a syndicated columnist, has been named president of the National Conference of Editorial Writers. The NCEW is a 64-year-old professional organization. Its members include editorial writers, editors, broadcasters and online opinion writers. One of its new missions, the Civility Project, endeavors to improve the quality of political discourse.”–Providence Journal, April 15

Morrisey noted the above and then had this example of Harrop being civil in one of her columns:

“Make no mistake: The tea party Republicans have engaged in economic terrorism against the United States–threatening to blow up the economy if they don’t get what they want. And like the al-Qaida bombers, what they want is delusional: the dream of restoring some fantasy caliphate. . . . Americans are not supposed to negotiate with terrorists, but that’s what Obama has been doing. . . . That the Republican leadership couldn’t control a small group of ignoramuses in its ranks has brought disgrace on their party. But oddly, Obama’s passivity made it hard for responsible Republicans to control their destructive children. The GOP extremists would ask Obama for his firstborn, and he’d say, ‘OK.’ So they think, why not ask for his second-born, to which he responds, ‘Let’s talk.’ ”–Froma Harrop syndicated column, Aug. 2

 

That dig apparently annoyed Harrop, who responded on her own web site yesterday.  Her explanation is, to say the least, entirely self-serving, and she twists the definition of “civility” into knots in order to explain her double standard:

I see incivility as not letting other people speak their piece. It’s not about offering strong opinions. If someone’s opinion is fact-based, then it is permissible in civil discourse.  Of course, there are matters of delicacy, and I dispensed with all sweet talk in this particular column. And I did stoop to some ad hominem remarks, I’ll admit.

Continue reading...

6 Responses to Hey, You Filthy Right-Wing Bigots: Stop the Hate!