12

PopeWatch: Hemorrhage

 

Pope Francis notes that the Church is losing clergy:

 

 

“We are dealing with a ‘hemorrhage’ that is debilitating to consecrated life and the very life of the Church,” the Pope said, noting that the number of desertions from the consecrated life is “worrisome.”

In his speech Saturday, the Pope cited three chief factors contributing to the loss of clerical and religious vocations: a society allergic to commitments, the worldly aspirations of many young people and the bad example of priests and religious.

We live in “an era of change,” Francis stated, “in which it is hard to take on serious, lifelong commitments” when everything around us seems temporary.

The present social and cultural context makes fidelity difficult, Francis said, since it is a culture of “the fragmentary and the provisional,” leading many to make choices “à la carte” while always “leaving ‘back doors’ open to other possibilities.”

The Pope said that this culture is rooted in “a strong practical relativism,” according to which everything is judged in terms of one’s personal fulfillment.

 

A second factor, the pontiff proposed, is the complicated world of young people today. While recognizing that there are many generous and committed young people in search of a deep spiritual life, many succumb to a secular logic entailing “a quest for success at any price, easy money and easy pleasures,” he said.

This logic “seduces many young people,” he added.

A third and final factor comes from within consecrated life itself, in which “there is no shortage of counter-witness that make fidelity difficult.”

When priests or religious sisters and brothers allow “routine, weariness, administrative burdens, internal divisions and careerism” to take root, there is little motivation to keep going when consecrated life becomes trying, Francis said.

In order to maintain its “fascination,” consecrated life must keep the “freshness and novelty of the centrality of Jesus,” which nourishes the “attractiveness of spirituality and the strength of the mission.” Continue Reading

5

Liberals and Refugees

 

 

I am old enough to recall when quite a few liberals were very unwilling to take in refugees fleeing from a totalitarian state where hundreds of thousands were being placed into “reeducation” camps and tens of thousands were being summarily executed:

 

The Democrat complaints in 1975 appeared to center on the fact that the refugees were escaping communism, an ideology, analysts say, liberals did not find that objectionable.

Leading the effort to ban the Vietnamese refugees was California’s Gov. Jerry Brown. Other prominent Democrats calling for the ban were Delaware’s Sen. Joe Biden, former presidential “peace candidate” George McGovern, and New York Congresswoman Elizabeth Holtzman.

Julia Taft, who in 1975 headed up President Gerald Ford’s Inter-agency Task Force on Indochinese refugee resettlement, told author Larry Engelmann in his book, “Tears Before the Rain: An Oral History of the Fall of South Vietnam” that “the new governor of California, Jerry Brown, was very concerned about refugees settling in his state.”

National Public Radio host Debbie Elliott retraced Brown’s refusal to accept any refugees in a January 2007 interview with Taft. According to a transcript, which was aired on its flagship program, “All Things Considered,” Taft said, “our biggest problem came from California due to Brown.” She called his rejection of Vietnamese refugees “a moral blow.”

Taft recalled another reason liberals opposed the refugees: “They said they had too many Hispanics, too many people on welfare, they didn’t want these people.”

“They didn’t want any of these refugees, because they had also unemployment,” she told NPR.

“They had already a large number of foreign-born people there. They had – they said they had too many Hispanics, too many people on welfare, they didn’t want these people.”

Author Larry Clinton Thompson recounted in his book, “Refugee Workers in the Indochina Exodus,” that Brown said, “We can’t be looking 5,000 miles away and at the same time neglecting people who live here.”

The CQ Almanac shows New York’s Elizabeth Holtzman – who was one of the House’s most visible liberal congresswomen — opposed helping the Vietnamese refugees. She said, according to CQ Almanac, “some of her constituents felt that the same assistance and compassion was not being shown to the elderly, unemployed and poor in this country.”

Rep. Donald Riegle, a liberal representative from Michigan who later would serve as its senator, offered an amendment that would have barred funds for the refugees unless similar assistance was given to Americans. The amendment was rejected by the House, 346 to 71, according to the Almanac.

Another House Democrat even tried to slow down the airlift of Vietnamese orphans. The Almanac reported that Rep. Joshua Eilberg, the Democratic chairman of the House Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship and International Law, accused the Ford administration of having acted “with unnecessary haste” in the evacuation of the orphans. Continue Reading

4

PopeWatch: March for Life 2017

 

Quick, someone get the smelling salts for Mark Shea.  Pope Francis sent out a message of support for the March for Life:

 

His Holiness Pope Francis sends warm greetings and the assurance of his closeness in prayer to the many thousands of young people from throughout America gathered in the Archdiocese of Washington and the Diocese of Arlington for the annual March for Life. His Holiness is profoundly grateful for this impressive testimony to the sacredness of every human life. As he has made clear, “so great is the value of a human life, and so inalienable the right to life of an innocent child growing in the mother’s womb, that no alleged right… can justify a decision to terminate that life” (Amoris Laetitia, 83). He trusts that this event, in which so many American citizens speak out on behalf of the most defenseless of our brothers and sisters, will contribute to a mobilization of conscience in defense of the right to life and effective measures to ensure its adequate legal protection. To all present the Holy Father cordially imparts his Apostolic Blessing as a pledge of strength and peace in the Lord.

 

Cardinal Pietro Parolin

Secretary of State Continue Reading

9

Congresswoman Mia Love

 

Congresswoman Mia Love’s speech to the March for Life.  Keep your eye on this lady.  She may well be the first female president of these United States.  Here is the text of her speech:

 

41 YEARS AGO, A STRUGGLING COUPLE ARRIVED IN AMERICA. THEY LEFT THEIR COUNTRY, ENTRUSTED THEIR TWO CHILDREN THAT THEY WOULD NOT SEE FOR ANOTHER FIVE YEARS IN THE CARE OF FAMILY MEMBERS TO COME HERE TO THE LAND OF OPPORTUNITY.   IT WAS INCONVENIENT FOR THEM TO FIND OUT THEY WERE PREGNANT WITH THEIR THIRD BECAUSE BOTH HAD TO WORK MULTIPLE JOBS TO MAKE ENDS MEET. SOME WOULD SAY IT WOULD HAVE BEEN EASIER TO HAVE AN ABORTION, BUT THIS COUPLE HAD TO MAKE A DIFFICULT CHOICE, PROTECT THE LIFE OF THEIR CHILD OR ALWAYS WONDER WHAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN. OF ALL THE SAD WORDS OF THE TONGUE OR THE PEN, THE SADDEST ARE THESE, IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN.

 

EACH CHILD BORN AND UNBORN HAS THE POTENTIAL TO OPEN UP OUR WORLD AND TAKE US TO PLACES AND SPACES WE HAVE NEVER IMAGINED. [CHEERS] [APPLAUSE] >> EACH LIVING CHILD CARRIES WITH HIM OR HER THE POTENTIAL FOR GREATNESS. A CHILD BORN TODAY MAY BECOME A DOCTOR THAT CURES CANCER OR ALZHEIMER’S. THAT CHILD MAY BE THE AFTER NOT — ASTRONAUT THAT TAKES THE WORLD TO MARS OR LEADS A GLOBAL BUSINESS. THAT CHILD MAY BECOME A FRIEND THAT SAVES A PEER FROM SUICIDE OR STRENGTHENS HER FAMILY AND NEIGHBOR THAT VOLUNTEERS AND ERADICATES HUNGER, OR A TEACHER WHO INSPIRES A STRUGGLING STUDENT. EVERY TIME WE KILL A CHILD THROUGH ABORTION WE KILL OUR POTENTIAL. [CHEERS] [APPLAUSE] >> Continue Reading

1

Resquiescat in Pace: John Hurt

 

One of the foremost British actors of his generation, John Hurt has passed away at age 77.  He played everything from Caligula to Winston Smith to the Elephant Man, but he will always perhaps be best known for his first major role, that of his portrayal of the villainous Richard Rich who betrayed Saint Thomas More for an office in Wales.  Hurt had the knack of all great character actors of disappearing into his roles.  He was always the character, and not John Hurt playing a character.  Unlike most British actors and actresses, he did not talk much about his politics, but he did view political correctness with disdain, calling it a threat to freedom.

 

12

PopeWatch: Knights v. Knights

From the only reliable source of Catholic news on the net, Eye of the Tiber:

 

Tensions have escalated between conservative and liberal Catholics today as Knights of Columbus members amassed on Malta’s border, which was recently annexed by the Vatican.

Maltese U.N. Ambassador Marcallino Galea told EOTT this morning that the Knights of Columbus had amassed more than 40,000 knights on the border of Malta.

“These numbers may reflect some very bad intentions and this is the last thing we would like to happen,” Galea said. “Our hope is that the Vatican will come to its senses and that they will come to understand that they cannot continue order us around and to tell us where we can or cannot park in our own parishes.”

Pope Francis has pledged to take counter-measures against Malta, which he accused of sending saboteurs into the Vatican to carry out liturgical-terrorist acts in which priests say the Latin Mass in Rome.

Pro-Vatican separatists have been fighting near Malta’s border for months now, with hundreds of Maltese civilian casualties from shelling, mines, and tickling people to death with fluffy ostrich plumes from their stupid hats.

“Casualties are horrific, yes, but what is worse than death is that they are infiltrating our churches and nagging parishioners about becoming members of the Knights of Columbus. They are torturing innocent bystanders by continually reiterating how good their life insurance policy is. Please send help.” Continue Reading

4

Winter War

Something for the weekend.  Finlandia Hymn.  My Bride and I are off to Winter War 44, a war gaming and rpg convention that I have been attending since 1976.  Go here to read about it.  We usually pick up some new games from the vendors and more at the game auction.  Twenty-five years ago we brought our four month old twin baby boys through a blizzard to their first war game convention.  Ah, time is a river and the current runs fast.

For the more venturesome, or crazed, among you, here is a link to Open General, a free computer game that has dozens of campaigns and hundreds of scenarios set in various time periods in which you command various military units to achieve the victory conditions of the scenario you are playing.  If you choose to download it, follow the installation instructions carefully.  Happy gaming!

44

Mark Shea Celebrates March for Life

 

While hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers are marching in Washington, Mark Shea delivers this:

 

Fascist Scapegoating.

Jefferson bought the entire Louisiana Purchase for two cents an acre. It was an incredible steal. Smartest decision in American history.

Trump is buying the complete cooperation of prolife Christians even more cheaply. For the cost of a few words from Mike Pence and KellyAnne Conway at the Prolife March in Washington, prolifers will henceforth reliably go to bat for every evil he wants to do. Torture? Fantastic! Scapegoating immigrants? We are on board! Destroying access to health care for the poor! Great!

Christian Trump supporters have completely bought a false soteriology that opposition to abortion taketh away the sins of the world.

Prove me wrong. I beg you.

Continue Reading

10

Quotes Suitable for Framing: Donald J. Trump

 

 

And a special hello to all of you in this room who have known and loved me for many, many years. It’s true. The politicians. They’ve had me to their homes. They’ve introduced me to their children. I’ve become their best friends in many instances. They’ve asked for my endorsement and they’ve always wanted my money. And even called me really a dear, dear friend. But then suddenly, decided when I ran for president as a Republican, that I’ve always been a no-good, rotten, disgusting scoundrel. And they totally forgot about me.

Donald J. Trump, Al Smith Dinner, October 20, 2016

2

The Whole Great Family of Man

March for Life

These communities, by their representatives in old  Independence Hall, said to the whole world of men: “We  hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are  created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with  certain unalienable rights; that among these are life,  liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” This was their majestic  interpretation of the economy of the Universe. This was their  lofty, and wise, and noble understanding of the justice of  the Creator to His creatures. [Applause.] Yes, gentlemen, to  all His creatures, to the whole great family of man. In their  enlightened belief, nothing stamped with the Divine image and  likeness was sent into the world to be trodden on, and degraded,  and imbruted by its fellows. They grasped not only the whole  race of man then living, but they reached forward and seized  upon the farthest posterity. They erected a beacon to guide  their children and their children’s children, and the countless  myriads who should inhabit the earth in other ages. Wise  statesmen as they were, they knew the tendency of prosperity  to breed tyrants, and so they established these great  self-evident truths, that when in the distant future some man,  some faction, some interest, should set up the doctrine that  none but rich men, or none but white men, were entitled to life,  liberty and the pursuit of happiness, their posterity might look  up again to the Declaration of Independence and take courage to  renew the battle which their fathers began — so that truth,  and justice, and mercy, and all the humane and Christian virtues  might not be extinguished from the land; so that no man would  hereafter dare to limit and circumscribe the great principles  on which the temple of liberty was being built.

Abraham Lincoln, August 17, 1858

January 27, 1967: Apollo I Tragedy

 

Hard to believe it has been fifty years.  I was ten years old and watching the television show Time Tunnel when a news flash interrupted the show to convey the grim news that Apollo 1 astronauts Pilot Virgil I. “Gus” Grissom, Senior Pilot Edward H. White II, and Pilot Roger B. Chaffee had died in a fire in the space capsule during a simulated practice launch.  Subsequent investigation indicated that the fire probably started due to faulty electric wiring in the capsule, but the exact cause of the fire ignition has never been pinpointed, which has created a fertile ground for conspiracy theorists usually centering around an alleged plot to kill Grissom.  A sad day for the American Space Program fifty years ago.

2

PopeWatch: Maltaschluss

 

 

Pope Francis is attempting to take over the Knights of Malta.  Father Z gives us the details:

 

 

The Holy See issued a press release about the SMOM (aka Knights of Malta) dust up. HERE

Traduzione in lingua inglese

Yesterday, 24 January 2017, in audience with the Holy Father, His Highness Fra’ Matthew Festing resigned from the office of Grand Master of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta.

Today, 25 January, the Holy Father accepted his resignation, expressing appreciation and gratitude to Fra’ Festing for his loyalty and devotion to the Successor of Peter, and his willingness to serve humbly the good of the Order and the Church.

The governance of the Order will be undertaken ad interim by the Grand Commander pending the appointment of the Papal Delegate.

[00139-EN.01] [Original text: Italian – working translation]

This leaves me perplexed.

Let’s break it down into manageable bites.

So, it seems that, the Grand Master offered his resignations to Pope Francis.
Then, Francis accepted the Grand Master’s resignation.
Now, Francis will appoint a delegate to lead the SMOM.

On the other hand, the SMOM is SOVEREIGN.   It is the Sovereign Military Order of the Knights of Malta.  They are a separate entity from the Holy See that, like Vatican City State, has sovereign nation status.

Moreover, as I have been instructed, article 6 of the constitution of the SMOM says that the Sovereign Council alone accepts or rejects the resignation of the Grand Master.

In fact, the Pope is informed only by the Council, for validity of the acceptance or rejection of the resignation.  The Pope does not accept the resignation.

In addition, the SMOM’s Constitution does not foresee a “pontifical delegate”.  There is no such critter in the life of the SMOM.  There is a pontifical delegate in canon law for religious institutes.   But, though there are aspect of the religious life to the SMOM, the SMOM is not a religious institute.  SMOM is a sovereign nation.

Is this a play by one state to take over the SMOM?

How would His Holiness react were, say, Italy to decide that it is time to absorb the Vatican City State.  “Your Holiness, we are appointing a ‘civil delegate’.”   If you erode the sovereignty of one, is it possible that you are eroding your own sovereignty?

I could use some schooling by someone who is well-versed in international law and who understands the SMOM.

Surely in the vast readership here, there is somebody who gets this.

Is it a play for the money they control?

I just read that there is involved in this mess a bank account with many millions.  HERE

Is it a play to suppress another “tradition? Continue Reading

5

Trump Calls Out Media Non-Coverage of March for Life

 

Hattip to commenter Greg Mockeridge.  Donald Trump calls out the non-coverage by the media of the March For Life:

 

During a Wednesday night interview with ABC, President Trump called out the media for covering a pro-abortion march but ignoring the March for Life.

ABC’s David Muir asked Trump if he “could hear the voices from the women’s march here in Washington?”

“I couldn’t hear them, but the crowds were large,” Trump responded. “You’re gonna have a large crowd on Friday, too, which is mostly pro-life people. You’re gonna have a lot of people coming on Friday, and I will say this, and I didn’t realize this, but I was told, you will have a very large crowd of people. I don’t know – as large or larger – some people say it’s gonna be larger. Pro-life people. And they say the press doesn’t cover them.” Continue Reading

35

PopeWatch: Donald Trump

 

Continuing our look at the interview in El Pais, the largest leftist paper in Spain, of Pope Francis, we  look at the portion of the interview which concerned Donald Trump:

Q. Your Holiness, going back to the global problems you just mentioned, Donald Trump is just now being sworn in as president of the United States, and the whole world is tense because of it. What do you make of it?

A. I think that we must wait and see. I don’t like to get ahead of myself, nor to judge people prematurely. We will see how he acts, what he does, and then I will form an opinion. But being afraid or rejoicing beforehand because of something that might happen is, in my view, quite unwise. It would be like prophets predicting calamities or windfalls that will not come to pass. We will see what he does and will judge accordingly. Always work with the specific. Christianity is either specific or it is not Christianity.

It is interesting that the first heresy in the Church took place just after the death of Jesus Christ: the gnostic heresy, condemned by the apostle John. Which was what I call a spray-paint religiousness, a non-specific religiousness…nothing concrete. No, no way. We need specifics. And from the specific we can draw consequences. We are losing our sense of the concrete. The other day, a thinker was telling me that this world is so upside down that it needs a fixed point. And those fixed points stem from concrete actions. What did you do, what did you decide, what moves did you make? That is why I prefer to wait and see.

Q. Aren’t you worried about the things we have heard up until now?

A. I’m still waiting. God waited so long for me, with all my sins… Continue Reading

1

January 26, 1945: Audie Murphy Earns Medal of Honor

The real heroes are dead.

Audie Murphy

When Audie Murphy starred in his aptly titled World War II biopic, To Hell and Back, his battlefield exploits were downplayed.  Partially this was due to Murphy’s modesty, he had not wanted to appear in the movie and did so only after he was promised that much of the focus of the film would be on his buddies who died during the War, and partially due to the fact that what he did during the War was so unbelievably courageous that film audiences might have refused to believe it.  Here is his Medal of Honor citation that he earned in truly hellish fighting near Holtzwihr, France on January 26, 1945:

General Orders No. 65

WAR DEPARTMENT

Washington 25, D.C., 9 August 1945

MEDAL OF HONOR – Award

Section
1
* * * * *

I. MEDAL OF HONOR. – By direction of the President, under the provisions of the act of Congress approved 9 July 1918 (WD Bul. 43, 1918), a Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty was awarded by the War Department in the name of Congress to the following-named officer:

Second Lieutenant Audie L. Murphy, 01692509, 15th Infantry, Army of the United States, on 26 January 1945, near Holtzwihr, France, commanded Company B, which was attacked by six tanks and waves of infantry. Lieutenant Murphy ordered his men to withdraw to a prepared position in a woods while he remained forward at his command post and continued to give fire directions to the artillery by telephone. Behind him to his right one of our tank destroyers received a direct hit and began to burn. It’s crew withdrew to the woods. Lieutenant Murphy continued to direct artillery fire which killed large numbers of the advancing enemy infantry. With the enemy tanks abreast of his position, Lieutenant Murphy climbed on the burning tank destroyer which was in danger of blowing up any instant and employed its .50 caliber machine gun against the enemy. He was alone and exposed to the German fire from three sides, but his deadly fire killed dozens of Germans and caused their infantry attack to waver. the enemy tanks, losing infantry support, began to fall back. For an hour the Germans tried every available weapon to eliminated Lieutenant Murphy, but he continued to hold his position and wiped out a squad which was trying to creep up unnoticed on his right flank. Germans reached as close as 10 yards only to be mowed down by his fire. He received a leg wound but ignored it and continued the single-handed fight until his ammunition was exhausted. He then made his way to his company, refused medical attention, and organized the company in a counterattack which forced the Germans to withdraw. His directing of artillery fire wiped out many of the enemy; he personally killed or wounded about 50. Lieutenant Murphy’s indomitable courage and his refusal to give an inch of ground saved his company from possible encirclement and destruction and enabled it to hold the woods which had been the enemy’s objective.
* * * * *

BY ORDER OF THE SECRETARY OF WAR:
OFFICIAL:

EDWARD F. WITSELL
Major General
Acting the Adjutant General

G.C. MARSHALL
Chief of Staff Continue Reading

5

Resquiescat in Pace: Mary Tyler Moore

Mary Tyler Moore dead at 80?  Impossible! One of the favorite actresses of my youth, she was a master of comedy, perhaps not greatly appreciated for it because she made it look so easy.  To me she will always be associated with the years of my childhood in the sixties and seventies.  A reluctant icon of feminism, she was clear that she did not agree with radical feminists and that the most important role for any woman was that of mother.  A moderate liberal in her youth, she became politically conservative as she grew older.  Unlike many in her industry she did not seek to inflict her political opinions on her fans.  One of the treasured memories of her life was when she and her mother had a private audience with Pope John Paul II.  Like many comediennes and comedians, she had much sorrow in her life.  May she know the Joy Eternal in the world to come.

 

January 25, 1890: Nellie Bly Completes 72 Day Trip Around the Globe

 

 

Born in 1864, Elizabeth Jane Cochran, better known by her journalism pen name of Nellie Bly, began her career when she wrote an angry rebuttal to an anti-woman piece in the Pittsburg Dispatch entitled What Girls are Good For.  The editor offered her a job and Bly never looked  back, becoming an internationally known reporter.  Perhaps her most famous exploit started in November 1889 when she embarked on an around the world trip to beat the fictional journey of Phineas Fogg’s  depicted in Jules Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days.  Her paper, the New York World, offered a contest for their readers to guess how long the trip would take her.  During the trip she met Jules Vernes and developed a global following as she filed stories throughout her journey.  She set a world record when she arrived back in New York on January 15, 1890, seventy-two days after she set out.

9

Cult of Personality

 

The sendoff of Saturday Night Live to the worst President of my lifetime, which is about to stretch back 60 years.  It is sort of precious, the Obama kids all grown up:

 

 

Too bad kids that he doubled the National debt, now at an eye-popping twenty-trillion dollars, presided over a growth-less economy and weakened the US around the globe.  Challenges for your generation to address, or not.   Life is a big learning curve, and if you take anything from the Obama years take this:  reality is not amenable to change by political slogans and wishful thinking, and a lot of people in politics are always ready to sell, at a very high price indeed, magic beans to gullible buyers.

13

PopeWatch: Populism

 

 

Continuing with our look at the Pope’s interview with El Pais, the largest leftist newspaper in Spain, the question of populism came up:

Q. Both in Europe and in America, the repercussions of the crisis that never ends, the growing inequalities, the absence of a strong leadership are giving way to political groups that reflect on the citizens’ malaise. Some of them —the so-called anti-system or populists— capitalize on the fears of an uncertain future in order to form a message full of xenophobia and hatred towards foreigners. Trump’s case is the most noteworthy, but there are others such as Austria or Switzerland. Are you worried about this trend?

A. That is what they call populism here. It is an equivocal term, because in Latin America populism has another meaning. In Latin America, it means that the people —for instance, people’s movements— are the protagonists. They are self-organized. When I started to hear about populism in Europe I didn’t know what to make of it, until I realized that it had different meanings. Crises provoke fear, alarm. In my opinion, the most obvious example of populism in the European sense of the word is Germany in 1933. After [Paul von] Hindenburg, after the crisis of 1930, Germany is broken, it needs to get up, to find its identity, it needs a leader, someone capable of restoring its character, and there is a young man named Adolf Hitler who says: “I can, I can”. And Germans vote for Hitler. Hitler didn’t steal power, his people voted for him, and then he destroyed his people. That is the risk. In times of crisis we lack judgment, and that is a constant reference for me. Let’s look for a savior who gives us back our identity and let us defend ourselves with walls, barbed-wire, whatever, from other people who may rob us of our identity. And that is a very serious thing. That is why I always try to say: talk among yourselves, talk to one another. But the case of Germany in 1933 is typical, a people who were immersed in a crisis, who were searching for their identity until this charismatic leader came and promised to give their identity back, and he gave them a distorted identity, and we all know what happened. Where there is no conversation… Can borders be controlled? Yes, each country has the right to control its borders, who comes in and who goes out, and those countries at risk —from terrorism or such things— have even more of a right to control them, but no country has the right to deprive its citizens of the possibility to talk with their neighbors.

 

Continue Reading

6

Gold Star Families Spat Upon by Anti-Trump “Protestors”

 

A Gold Star Family is a family that has suffered the pain of having a member of the family die in the military service of the nation.  During the election campaign we were told that Gold Star Families were above reproach when a Gold Star Family attacked Trump at the Democrat convention,  Over the weekend some anti-Trump rioters revealed what many on the Left really think of Gold Star Families, at least those who disagree with them politically:

 

Allahpundit at Hot Air tells us what happened next:

 

John touched on this yesterday as part of a longer round-up of “the Resistance” acting like dirtbags but it deserves an extra thread. Imagine the thought process involved in (a) setting out to accost people (b) at an event devoted to the military and their families, specifically, and (c) zeroing in on two women, knowing that chances were fair that they’ve lost loved ones to war. Which, in the case of Ryan Manion and Amy Looney, happened to be true.

Where was security?

We were an hour late to the event. First because we could not get around an angry mob in the street that was burning trash cans and smashing windows. When we finally got to the venue, a group of about 75 people separated us from the entrance. Amy and I stood there unsure of what to do. I finally said, let’s just walk. As we made our way through the crowd we were spit at and called some of the worst and most vile things I have ever heard come out of a person’s mouth. These people had such hatred in their eyes when they screamed at us. After leaving the event we walked outside and was first pushed by a man in a mask hiding his face, then told by 2 women that we ruined this country. They screamed this in our faces along as in the face of a little boy that could have been no older then 6. As the one woman screamed the other pushed up against me and colored all over my mom’s shawl I was wearing with permanent marker.

This was on Inauguration Day, when assorted degenerates were smashing windows and burning limos in parts of D.C., not during Saturday’s Women’s March. Mary Katharine Ham, who knows both women and has worked with the Travis Manion Foundation, went on CNN yesterday to ask the fateful question: How would this have played in the media if the ideological affiliations had been different?

“I don’t think this characterizes the march and the movement that we saw out here today,” she said. “I want to be careful about that because I think that that’s something people have unfairly done to conservative movements in the past and to Tea Partiers, where you pick one thing and you go: ‘Look at those awful people out there, their concerns should be dismissed.’”

“But this is part of the story, as is Madonna saying she thinks about blowing up the White House,” she said. “Those are not great things. If it were a conservative movement, we would hear a lot about it. If you don’t think that the left has some prejudices of its own that can lead it very astray like it did last night in that instance, then you’re wrong. And if you think that that’s not part of the reason many turned to Trump, then you’re also wrong.”

We missed out on some memorably stern lectures about the “climate of hate” on cable news this weekend just because this came from the left rather than the right. Continue Reading

10

Conservative Ivory Towers and Trump

 

Father Rutler at The Catholic World Report has a good post on the conservative establishment and Trump:

 

We heard and read much commentary from ivory towers during the presidential campaign of 2016, some of it from academicians, and most of it from journalists, television commentators and pollsters for whom the imperium of reality is a form of colonial oppression. One self-styled conservative faculty member at Columbia University confidently predicted : “After Trump gets wiped out this November, the passions will cool. Unlike some past elections, this election won’t be close enough for anyone to argue that the opposition stole the election.”

Another contributor to a leading conservative journal added shortly before the voting began: “No one outside Trump’s evaporating base of diehards seems to think nominating a buffoon was an especially good idea. Yet there he stands, setting conservative politics back a decade every time his tongue makes it past his teeth.”

Their bewildered surprise on election night showed how locked and lofty their towers are, and how quickly perception withers in the groves of Academe. The object of their indignation and scorn, of course, was the billionaire candidate, who is the sort they might solicit for donations to the endowments and fellowships off which many of them live, but who would not be welcome at any of their Chablis and Brie symposia which they are deluded enough to think make a difference in the world. Various professors and journalists published “Never Trump” proclamations which made some cogent points for anyone interested in substance, but which were impassioned beyond reason and conspicuous for a kind of snobbery peculiar to arrivistes.

The veneer quickly shattered when they lapsed into middle school name-calling. Many of these were not liberal in politics, as the term now is used. A considerable number would call themselves social conservatives, and might even think of themselves as strong Catholic apologists. They were not satisfied to state their objections to Mr. Trump’s contentions and avowals, for they resented with unedifying condescension that he was not the sort who belonged in their circle and was stubbornly insolvent in their abstract alchemy. He was “manifestly unfit to be president of the United States” and gave offense with his “vulgarity, oafishness, and shocking ignorance.” He speaks with a “funky outer-borough accent.’’ As though these writers had a copyright on the tradition of culture, they complained: “Donald Trump is a menace to American conservatism who would take the work of generations and trample it underfoot in behalf of a populism as heedless and crude as the Donald himself.”

The palpable disdain from the Ivory Tower was not because reality has a bad taste but because it is in bad taste. Many of the same voices were relatively mute during the past eight years of our nation’s moral disintegration, possibly out of reluctance to lose status on campuses which have become ethical wastelands.

Before the election, which they assumed would bury conservatism in a landslide, the hyperventilating professors, journalists, and clerics, were preparing to preen that they had been prophets. When the polls closed, they suddenly learned to their dismay that humanity consists of humans, the cipher for whom was “uneducated white males” who had not matriculated in the shade of the Ivory Tower. It is not beyond some of them to shy from the fact that they bet on the wrong horse. Now there is some chagrin that the winning horse has left them at the gate. This brings to mind the incident in 1914 when none of the three white cassocks fit the small and bent figure of the newly elected Pope Benedict XV. The papal haberdasher was hastily summoned to make adjustments. When he told the Holy Father that he knew he would be elected, Benedict said, “Gammarelli, if you knew, why didn’t you make me a cassock that fit?” Continue Reading

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January 24, 1972: Sergeant Shoichi Yokoi is Captured

 

If there were any question as to the fanaticism, or raw courage and determination if one prefers, of the Japanese military during World War II, the tale of Sergeant Shoichi Yokoi would have answered it.  For 28 years after the liberation of Guam he survived in the jungles, initially with nine other soldiers.  He learned in 1952 that Japan had lost the War, but he did not surrender because Japanese soldiers did not do that.  On January 24, 1972 he was discovered by two local villagers on Guam who subdued him and brought him from the jungle with minor bruising.  On returning to Japan he said, “It is with much embarrassment, but I have returned.”

Two Japanese soldiers of World War II surrendered in 1974 and none since then.  Shoichi Yokoi married, became a popular television personality and advocated leading an austere lifestyle.  He passed away in 1997, his tombstone being the one purchased by his mother in 1955 under the assumption that he was dead.

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PopeWatch: Latin American World

 

Pope Francis just had an interview with El Pais, the largest leftist paper in Spain.  PopeWatch will be looking at the interview this week.  One answer gives us a clear indication of how the Pope came up with his crackpot economic ideas:

 

 

The trouble is that Latin America is suffering the effects —which I emphasized in Laudato Si— of an economic system that has the money god at its center, and that means policies that lead to a lot of exclusion. Which leads to a lot of suffering. It is obvious that Latin America today is the target of a strong attack from economic liberalism, the one I condemn in Evangelii Gaudium when I say that “this economy kills”. It kills with hunger, it kills with a lack of culture. Migration flows not just from Africa to Lampedusa or Lesbos. Migration also flows from Panama to the Mexican-U.S. border. People migrate in search of something, because liberal systems don’t give them job opportunities and foster criminality. In Latin America there is the problem of the drug cartels, drugs that are consumed in the United States and Europe. They make them for the rich countries here, and they lose their lives in the process. And there are those who do it willingly. In my homeland we have a term to describe them: cipayos. It is a classic, literary word that is included in our national poem. The cipayo is the one who sells his homeland to the foreign power who pays him the most. In the history of Argentina, for instance, there has always been a cipayo among the politicians. Or some political position worthy of cipayos. Always. So Latin America must re-arm itself with political groups that will recover the strength of the people. The biggest example for me is Paraguay after the war. The country lost the War of the Triple Alliance and was left almost entirely in the hands of women. And the Paraguayan woman felt that she had to rebuild the nation, defend her faith, defend her culture and defend her language, and she did it. The Paraguayan woman wasn’t a cipaya, she defended what was hers, and she repopulated the country. I think that she is the most glorious woman in the Americas. That is an example of someone who never gave up. Of heroism. In Buenos Aires there is a neighborhood on the banks of the Río de la Plata, where the streets bear the names of patriotic women, women who fought for independence, for their homeland. Women have better sense. Maybe I am exaggerating. Correct me if I am. But they have a stronger inclination towards defending their homeland because they are mothers. They are less cipayas. They are less at risk of being cipayas. Continue Reading

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Trump Reinstitutes Mexico City Policy

 

 

Bravo for President Trump:

 

 

President Donald Trump signed an executive action on Monday reinstating the so-called Mexico City Policy, which bars international non-governmental organizations that perform or promote abortions from receiving US government funding.

The policy, initially put in place by the Reagan administration, was rescinded by the Obama administration in 2009.
 
Even during the Obama years, US law banned direct funding for abortion services. But NGOs that performed the procedure were allowed to receive US funding for other programs, including those related to contraception access and post-abortion care.
Now, NGOs that offer or promote abortions as part of their family planning services will be prevented from receiving any assistance from the US Agency for International Development, one of the largest contributors to international development assistance.

Continue Reading

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Theodore Roosevelt and The Curse of Meroz

 

 

Theodore Roosevelt had long been a harsh critic of the neutrality policy of the Wilson administration.  On January 29, 1917 he gave a memorable response to the January 22, 1917 speech to the Senate of President Wilson in which Wilson called for Peace Without Victory:

“President Wilson has announced himself in favor of peace without victory, and now he has declared himself against universal service-that is against all efficient preparedness by the United States.

Peace without victory is the natural ideal of the man too proud to fight.

When fear of the German submarine next moves President Wilson to declare for “peace without victory” between the tortured Belgians and their cruel oppressors and task masters;  when such fear next moves him to utter the shameful untruth that each side is fighting for the same things, and to declare for neutrality between wrong and right;  let him think of the prophetess Deborah who, when Sisera mightily oppressed the children of Israel with his chariots of iron, and when the people of Meroz stood neutral between the oppressed and their oppressors, sang of them:

“Curse ye Meroz, sang the angel of the  Lord, curse ye bitterly the inhabitants thereof, because they came not to the help of the Lord against the wrongdoings of the mighty.”” 

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PopeWatch: Luther

Pope Francis is doing his best to present a false image of Martin Luther:

 

The Pope was speaking to a delegation of pilgrims led by the Lutheran Archbishop Kari Makinen of Turku. Their annual visit takes place during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.

In his address, Pope recalled his visit to Sweden last October marking 500 years since the start of the Reformation, saying it was a “significant step” that “gave us courage” for the ecumenical journey ahead.

“This joint commemoration of the Reformation was important on both the human and theological-spiritual levels,” he said.

“After 50 years of official ecumenical dialogue between Catholics and Lutherans, we have succeeded in clearly articulating points of view which today we agree on. For this we are grateful.”

“At the same time we keep alive in our hearts sincere contrition for our faults,” the Pope said. “In this spirit, we recalled in Lund that the intention of Martin Luther 500 years ago was to renew the Church, not divide Her.

 

Continue Reading

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January 22, 1917: Peace Without Victory

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The United States was two months from entering the Great War when President Wilson addressed the Senate a century ago, calling for Peace Without Victory and laying out the beginnings of what would eventually be his Fourteen Points as the basis of peace:

Gentlemen of the Senate:

On the 18th of December last, I addressed an identical note to the governments of the nations now at war requesting them to state, more definitely than they had yet been stated by either group of belligerents, the terms upon which they would deem it possible to make peace.  I spoke on behalf of humanity and of the rights of all neutral nations like our own, many of whose most vital interests the war puts in constant jeopardy.

The Central Powers united in a reply which state merely that they were ready to meet their antagonists in conference to discuss terms of peace.  The Entente powers have replied much more definitely and have stated, in general terms, indeed, but with sufficient definiteness to imply details, the arrangements, guarantees, and acts of reparation which they deem to be the indispensable conditions of a satisfactory settlement.  We are that much nearer a definite discussion of the peace which shall end the present war.  We are that much nearer the definite discussion of the international concert which must thereafter hold the world at peace.

In every discussion of peace that must end this war, it is taken for granted that the peace must be followed by some definite concert of power which will make it virtually impossible that any such catastrophe should ever overwhelm us again.  Every love of mankind, every sane and thoughtful man must take that for granted.

Continue Reading

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Stamped With the Divine Image

These communities, by their representatives in old  Independence Hall, said to the whole world of men: “We  hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are  created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with  certain unalienable rights; that among these are life,  liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” This was their majestic  interpretation of the economy of the Universe. This was their  lofty, and wise, and noble understanding of the justice of  the Creator to His creatures. [Applause.] Yes, gentlemen, to  all His creatures, to the whole great family of man. In their  enlightened belief, nothing stamped with the Divine image and  likeness was sent into the world to be trodden on, and degraded,  and imbruted by its fellows. They grasped not only the whole  race of man then living, but they reached forward and seized  upon the farthest posterity. They erected a beacon to guide  their children and their children’s children, and the countless  myriads who should inhabit the earth in other ages. Wise  statesmen as they were, they knew the tendency of prosperity  to breed tyrants, and so they established these great  self-evident truths, that when in the distant future some man,  some faction, some interest, should set up the doctrine that  none but rich men, or none but white men, were entitled to life,  liberty and the pursuit of happiness, their posterity might look  up again to the Declaration of Independence and take courage to  renew the battle which their fathers began — so that truth,  and justice, and mercy, and all the humane and Christian virtues  might not be extinguished from the land; so that no man would  hereafter dare to limit and circumscribe the great principles  on which the temple of liberty was being built.

Abraham Lincoln, August 17, 1858

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Roe V. Wade and the Right to Rule Ourselves

 

On January 22, 1973 the United States Supreme Court in the case of Roe v. Wade and in the companion case of Doe v. Bolton made up a Constitutional right to abortion out of thin air.  There was nothing in the Constitution forbidding the states from regulating abortion, and the states had so regulated, and often criminalized, abortion since the inception of the Republic.  Roe and Doe were terrible crimes against the unborn, but they were also blows against the most precious civil liberty Americans possess:  the right to rule ourselves.

If Roe were overturned, the abortion regime of abortion on demand would be limited to a handful of states.  Some states would ban abortion outright in almost all cases.  Most would bring abortion under ever growing restrictions that would shrink the number of abortions performed.  One of the prime defenses of abortion currently, that is a Constitutional right, would be no more.  Pro-lifers would be free to focus on the ugly reality of abortion without fear that Federal courts by judicial fiat would upend hard won pro-life legislation at the state level.

How do we get there? Two main paths that I can see.  Continue Reading

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God Bless the USA

 

 

It is thought by many, and said by some, that this republic has already seen its best days; that the historian may now write the story of its decline and fall. Two classes of men are just now especially afflicted with such forebodings. The first are those who are croakers by nature. The men who have a taste for funerals, and especially national funerals. They never see the bright side of anything, and probably never will. Like the raven in the lines of Edgar A. Poe, they have learned two words, and those are, ‘never more’. They usually begin by telling us what we never shall see.

Frederick Douglass, December 7, 1869

Something for the weekend.  This rendition of Lee Greenwood’s God Bless the USA seems very appropriate as a new administration begins.  We Americans are a tough and resilient people, something our adversaries frequently forget and something we too also fail to sometimes remember.

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PopeWatch: Tramp Stamp

 

 

From the only reliable source of Catholic news on the net, Eye of the Tiber:

 

 

According to several reports out today, the Vatican will be issuing lower back tattoos to Catholics in honor of German priest and protestant reformer Martin Luther this October.

Although Martin Luther was declared a heretic and excommunicated in 1521, Vatican officials have reportedly sent letters to all Catholics that are “able and willing” to visit Rome for the “official issuing of the ecclesiastical tramp stamp.”

“We believe that Martin Luther, though deemed a heretic by the antiquated Catholic Church, is deserving of recognition for being a witness to the gospel,” said Vatican Tramp Stamp official Eduardo Rosalini. “Also because we want people to like us. No matter whether it’s our fault or not. We do as Christ did in the Scriptures when he apologized to Pontius Pilate, blaming hypocritical members of the Sanhedrin for driving [Pilate] away from a potential conversion to Judaism.”

Rosalini went on to say that, although Catholics will not be eligible for indulgences for getting the tramp stamp due to Luther’s stance on the issue, they will, nevertheless, be compensated with salvation “no matter what sins they commit after the getting the tattoo.” Continue Reading

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Pope Francis to President Trump

 

 

Hattip to Dave Griffey at Daffey Thoughts.  A message to our new President from the Pope:

 

The Honorable Donald Trump, President of the United States of America,

Upon your inauguration as the forty-fifth President of the United States of America, I offer you my cordial good wishes and the assurance of my prayers that Almighty God will grant you wisdom and strength in the exercise of your high office.

At a time when our human family is beset by grave humanitarian crises demanding farsighted and united political responses, I pray that your decisions will be guided by the rich spiritual and ethical values that have shaped the history of the American people and your nation’s commitment to the advancement of human dignity and freedom worldwide.

Under your leadership, may America’s stature continue to be measured above all by its concern for the poor, the outcast and those in need who, like Lazarus, stand before our door. With these sentiments, I ask the Lord to grant you and your family, and all the beloved American people, his blessings of peace, concord and every material and spiritual prosperity.

Franciscus PP.

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Abraham Lincoln Sums Up the Obama Years

“It is said an Eastern monarch once charged his wise men to invent him a sentence to be ever in view, and which should be true and appropriate in all times and situations. They presented him the words, “And this too, shall pass away.” How much it expresses! How chastening in the hour of pride! How consoling in the depths of affliction!”

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President Trump’s Inauguration

 

 

I will be busy in the law mines when the Inauguration ceremony is held.  Let me know in the comboxes what you think.  Analysis from me when I get home tonight.  Paul Zummo will be live blogging the speech at The Cranky Conservative.  Go here to read it.

 

Update: Here is the text of the speech:

Chief Justice Roberts, President Carter, President Clinton, President Bush, fellow Americans and people of the world – thank you.

We the citizens of America have now joined a great national effort to rebuild our county and restore its promise for all our people. 

Together we will determine the course of America for many, many years to come.

Together we will face challenges. We will confront hardships. But we will get the job done.

Every four years we gather on these steps to carry out the orderly and peaceful transfer of power.

And we are grateful to President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama for their gracious aid throughout this transition. They have been magnificent, thank you.

Today’s ceremony, however, has very special meaning because today we are not merely transferring power from one administration to another – but transferring it from Washington DC and giving it back to you the people. Continue Reading

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PopeWatch: Inaugural Address

 

Imagine if Pope Francis had given an honest inaugural address back in 2013:

I would like to thank the conclave for my election.  In my pontificate I will emphasize mercy for all, especially for non-Catholics, although selfabsorbed promethean neopelagian had better start running.  I am mildly proud of how humble I am and extreme humility will be a hallmark of my reign.  In regard to Global Warming I intend to fight it with as much energy as I will fight most signs of traditional Catholicism.

In regard to economic matters I despise markets and look with favor at government regulation and control.

As for international peace, it will never come until every last arms merchants is bankrupt.

I believe it is time for the Church to rethink the blanket ban on Communion for Catholics in adulterous marriage.

Europe would greatly benefit from a huge influx of Muslim immigrants. Continue Reading

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March 4, 1865: The Greatest Inaugural Address

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Hands down the most moving  inaugural address in American history is the second inaugural address given by President Lincoln, little over a month before his death.  It is short, to the point and powerful.  It is also the most important theological document written by any American President.  Here is the text:

Continue Reading

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As If They’d Have Him

 

 

 

 

 

Garrison Keillor is still alive? was my initial reaction to this proclamation by former humorist Garrison Keillor that he is searching for another religion due to the number of Christians who voted for Trump:

 

So I’ve been shopping around for a new religion to see me through the next four years. Too many of my fellow Christians voted for selfishness and for degradation of the beautiful world God created. I guess they figured that by the time the planet was a smoky wasteland, they’d be nice and comfy in heaven, so wotthehell. Anyhow, I’m looking around for other options. Continue Reading

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March 4, 1841: Longest Inaugural Address

 

President William Henry Harrison gave the longest inaugural address in American history.  He spoke for one hour and forty-five minutes in a howling snow storm, without wearing a hat or a coat.   Catching pneumonia, he died one month later.  Here is the text of his address:

Called from a retirement which I had supposed was to continue for the residue of my life to fill the chief executive office of this great and free nation, I appear before you, fellow-citizens, to take the oaths which the Constitution prescribes as a necessary qualification for the performance of its duties; and in obedience to a custom coeval with our Government and what I believe to be your expectations I proceed to present to you a summary of the principles which will govern me in the discharge of the duties which I shall be called upon to perform.

It was the remark of a Roman consul in an early period of that celebrated Republic that a most striking contrast was observable in the conduct of candidates for offices of power and trust before and after obtaining them, they seldom carrying out in the latter case the pledges and promises made in the former. However much the world may have improved in many respects in the lapse of upward of two thousand years since the remark was made by the virtuous and indignant Roman, I fear that a strict examination of the annals of some of the modern elective governments would develop similar instances of violated confidence.

Although the fiat of the people has gone forth proclaiming me the Chief Magistrate of this glorious Union, nothing upon their part remaining to be done, it may be thought that a motive may exist to keep up the delusion under which they may be supposed to have acted in relation to my principles and opinions; and perhaps there may be some in this assembly who have come here either prepared to condemn those I shall now deliver, or, approving them, to doubt the sincerity with which they are now uttered. But the lapse of a few months will confirm or dispel their fears. The outline of principles to govern and measures to be adopted by an Administration not yet begun will soon be exchanged for immutable history, and I shall stand either exonerated by my countrymen or classed with the mass of those who promised that they might deceive and flattered with the intention to betray. However strong may be my present purpose to realize the expectations of a magnanimous and confiding people, I too well understand the dangerous temptations to which I shall be exposed from the magnitude of the power which it has been the pleasure of the people to commit to my hands not to place my chief confidence upon the aid of that Almighty Power which has hitherto protected me and enabled me to bring to favorable issues other important but still greatly inferior trusts heretofore confided to me by my country. Continue Reading

March 4, 1793: Shortest Inaugural Address

 

 

The shortest inaugural address was given on March 4, 1793.  Since it was delivered by George Washington it still managed to be meaningful as well as brief.  I wish every one of his successors had to repeat the final paragraph:

Fellow Citizens:

I AM again called upon by the voice of my country to execute the functions of its Chief Magistrate. When the occasion proper for it shall arrive, I shall endeavor to express the high sense I entertain of this distinguished honor, and of the confidence which has been reposed in me by the people of united America.
Previous to the execution of any official act of the President the Constitution requires an oath of office. This oath I am now about to take, and in your presence: That if it shall be found during my administration of the Government I have in any instance violated willingly or knowingly the injunctions thereof, I may (besides incurring constitutional punishment) be subject to the upbraidings of all who are now witnesses of the present solemn ceremony.

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PopeWatch: Luther Stamp

I feel much freer now that I am certain the pope is the Antichrist.

Martin Luther

PopeWatch pities satirists trying to keep up with this Vatican:

The Vatican office charged with issuing stamps, known as the Philatelic and Numismatic Office, confirmed Tuesday to LifeSiteNews that Luther, who broke away from the Catholic Church in a schism 500 years ago, will be celebrated with a postage stamp in 2017. The office is in charge of the annual commission of stamps, coins, and other commemorative medals.

The Vatican regularly issues such memorabilia for special events, including papal trips and holy years. Honoring Luther and the Protestant Reformation is an unlikely choice, trumping other significant events in the Catholic Church such as the 100-year anniversary of the apparition of Our Lady of Fatima and the 300-year anniversary of our Lady of Aparecida, Brazil.

Major events such as Christmas, Easter, the Holy Year of Mercy, and the World Meeting of Families have also merited a commemorative stamp. In the time before a Papal election, when the seat of Peter is vacant, the Philatelic and Numismatic office issues a “Sede Vacante” stamp.

Usually if individuals are commemorated on stamps they are saints, such as Teresa of Calcutta, John Paul II, and Pope John XXIII, who most recently were honored with stamps.

While the Vatican has in the past collaborated with other national post offices to create stamps that are not of explicitly religious content, such as Charlie Chaplain or the fall of the Berlin wall, the Luther stamp has an undeniable religious connotation linked with much hostility to the Catholic Church. Continue Reading

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Obama Commutes Sentence of Un-Repentant Terrorist

 

 

I have been highly critical of President Obama.  In the closing days of his term in office I see that I have not been critical enough:

 

The last imprisoned member of the Puerto Rican independence group that terrorized New York in the 1970s will be a free man in May — 20 years ahead of schedule.

President Obama granted a commutation Tuesday to FALN mastermind Oscar López Rivera, who’s served 35 years of his 55-year sentence.

During the 1970s and 80s, López Rivera was part of FALN, or Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional, a group seeking to liberate Puerto Rico from U.S. control.

FALN placed more than 130 bombs in American cities — including one in New York on Jan. 24, 1975. The explosive went off in busy Fraunces Tavern during lunch hour. Four people died, including Frank Connor, a 33-year-old father. Continue Reading

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PopeWatch: Blind Man

 

 

Sandro Magister brings us an english translation of Cardinal Caffarra’s explanation as to why the Four Cardinals wrote to the PopeL

CAFFARRA: “WHY WE WROTE TO THE POPE”

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We cardinals have the grave duty of advising the pope in the governance of the Church. It is a duty, and duties are obligatory.

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Only a blind man could deny that in the Church there is great confusion, uncertainty, insecurity caused by some paragraphs of “Amoris Laetitia.” In recent months it has been happening that on the same fundamental questions concerning the sacramental economy – marriage, confession, and Eucharist – and Christian life, some bishops have said A, and others have said the opposite of A. With the intention of giving a good interpretation of the same texts.

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There is only one way to get to the bottom of this: to ask the author of the text that has been interpreted in two contradictory ways what is the correct interpretation. There is no other way. Next came the problem of the way in which to approach the pope. We chose a way that is very traditional in the Church, what are called “dubia.” […] This was done in a private manner, and only when we were certain that the Holy Father would not respond did we decide to publish.

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The problem is precisely this: that on fundamental points there is not a good understanding of what the pope is teaching, as demonstrated by the conflict of interpretations among bishops. We want to be docile to the pope’s magisterium, but the pope’s magisterium must be clear.

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The division already existing in the Church is the cause of the letter [of the four cardinals to the pope – editor’s note], not its effect.

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To conceive a pastoral practice not founded and rooted in doctrine means founding and rooting pastoral practice on inclination. A Church that pays little attention to doctrine is not a more pastoral Church, but a more ignorant Church.

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The evolution of doctrine has always accompanied Christian thought. [But} if there is one clear point, it is that there is no evolution where there is contradiction. If I say that S is P and then I say that S is not P, the second proposition does not develop the first, but contradicts it. Already Aristotle had correctly taught that enunciating a universal affirmative principle (for example: all adultery is wrong) and at the same time a particular negative proposition having the same subject and predicate (for example: some adultery is not wrong), this is not making an exception to the former. It is contradicting it.

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Can the minister of the Eucharist (usually the priest) give the Eucharist to a person who lives “more uxorio” with a woman or a man who is not the wife or husband, and does not intend to live in continence? […] Has “Amoris Laetitia” taught that, given certain specific circumstances and after going through a certain process, the faithful could receive the Eucharist without resolving to live in continence? There are bishops who have taught that this is possible. By a simple deduction of logic, one must therefore also teach that adultery is not evil in itself and of itself.

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Conscience is the place where we come up against the central pillar of modernity. […] One who saw this in the most lucid manner imaginable was Blessed John Henry Newman. In the famous letter to the duke of Norfolk, he says: “All through my day there has been a resolute warfare, I had almost said conspiracy against the rights of conscience.” Further ahead he adds that in the name of conscience, true conscience is destroyed.

This is why among the five “dubia” doubt number five [the one on conscience – editor’s note] is the most important. There is a passage in “Amoris Laetitia,” at no. 303, that is not clear; it seems – I repeat: it seems – to admit the possibility that there may be a true judgment of conscience (not invincibly erroneous; this has always been admitted by the Church) in contradiction with that which the Church teaches as having to do with the deposit of divine Revelation. It seems. And that is why we raised the doubt with the pope.

Newman says that “did the Pope speak against Conscience in the true sense of the word, he would commit a suicidal act. He would be cutting the ground from under his feet.” These are matters of breathtaking gravity. Private judgment would be raised up as the ultimate criterion of moral truth. Never say to a person: “Always follow your conscience,” without always and immediately adding: “Love and seek the truth about the good.” You would be putting into his hands the weapon most destructive of his humanity.

(English translation by Matthew Sherry, Ballwin, Missouri, U.S.A.)

 

Continue Reading

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Hamilton: Art Fails as Politics

 

The United States have already felt the evils of incorporating a large number of foreigners into their national mass; by promoting in different classes different predilections in favor of particular foreign nations, and antipathies against others, it has served very much to divide the community and to distract our councils. It has been often likely to compromise the interests of our own country in favor of another. The permanent effect of such a policy will be, that in times of great public danger there will be always a numerous body of men, of whom there may be just grounds of distrust; the suspicion alone will weaken the strength of the nation, but their force may be actually employed in assisting an invader.

Alexander Hamilton, “Examination of Jefferson’s Message to Congress of December 7, 1801” (1802)

 

 

 

 

I have rather liked the musical Hamilton, although I have understood that it bore only an accidental relationship to the history it purported to represent.  However, at Reason Nicholas Pell has a scathing review of Hamilton, and he makes some good points:

 

 

Some are irritated about the people who aren’t white playing white people, but I’m not. The whole production plays so fast and loose with the truth that it’s hard to pick any particular piece to criticize, there’s a reality correlation approximating that of the Weekly World News. At the top of the list, though, has to be casting Alexander Hamilton as some sort of proto-multicultural progressive. That’s either stupidity or mendacity, take your pick. Hamilton was, if anything, the most aristocratic of the Founding Fathers, the closest thing to a Colonial Tory. You know that electoral college you’ve been gnashing your teeth over for the last couple months? Guess whose idea that was? Continue Reading