PopeWatch: Populism for Me and not for Thee

Wednesday, March 22, AD 2017


Samuel Gregg at The Federalist notes that Pope Francis has a double standard when it comes to populism:


Asked in a 2015 interview whether he considered the pope isolated and surrounded by opponents in the Vatican, Fernández answered: “By no means. The people are with him, not his few adversaries. This pope first filled St. Peter’s Square with crowds and then began changing the Church. Above all, for this reason he is not isolated. The people sense in him the fragrance of the Gospel, the joy of the Spirit, the closeness of Christ and thus they feel the Church is like their home.”

“The people.” “Crowds.” “The people.” Such language has very specific meaning in Latin America. When used by figures such as the long-deceased Argentine populist Juan Perón or the more recently departed “twenty-first-century socialist” Hugo Chávez of Venezuela, the purpose of this phraseology is the same. It is to evoke an almost mystical connection between the leader and “the people” as they struggle together against oppression.

This rhetoric goes hand-in-hand with tendencies to caricature real or perceived opponents. The speeches of Perón and Chávez are full of ad hominem rants against “enemies of the people.” Francis himself isn’t shy about applying labels. There’s even a blog that has compiled his more memorable phrases: “rigorists,” “fundamentalists,” “Pharisees,” “intellectual aristocrats,” “little monsters,” “self-absorbed promethean neo–pelagians,” to name just a few. The targets range from younger Catholics with a distaste for 1970s liturgy to theologians who insist that coherently preaching the gospel requires a concern for intellectual rigor.

But Francis’s populist side manifests itself most clearly in addresses he’s given to one particular group that he has clearly supported: an organization called The World Meeting of Popular Movements. The populist edge to Francis’s thought is very evident in, for example, a 2015 speech he gave to this group in Bolivia. At various points, the rhetoric employed by the pope—“tyranny of mammon,” “this economy kills,” “bondage of individualism” etc.—is decidedly charged, even polemical. Some of it isn’t that different from the language used by populist politicians throughout Latin America.

This last point is underscored by the fact that Pope Francis delivered these remarks while seated next to President Evo Morales of Bolivia. A self-described communitarian-socialist, Morales is a quintessential Latin American left-populist. Like all such politicians, he’s steadily removed constitutional restraints on his power in the name of “the people.” Morales’ prominence at the pope’s speech, as one journalist present remarked to me, reinforced the sense that “the whole event had the feel of a deeply political, very left-wing, and somewhat secular rally.”

The pope’s apparent empathy for a type of populism was further underscored when the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences held a conference in April 2016 to mark the 25th anniversary of John Paul II’s encyclical “Centesimus Annus.” The two heads of states invited to speak were none other than Morales and another left-populist head of state, Ecuador’s Rafael Correa. The event was tilted even further in a left-populist direction by the presence of the then-candidate for the Democratic nomination for president of the United States, Sen. Bernie Sanders, who also gave a speech.

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2 Responses to PopeWatch: Populism for Me and not for Thee

  • File under “Elites.”

    9 March 2017 Instapundit: “To be fair, he’s not the first Pope to tell peasants to keep in their place.” Pope Francis condemned populism and President Trump. If it weren’t for double standards liberals would have no standards.

    In addition to having no concern for the masses of the people, here’s a major reason for progressive elites’ and central planners’ 100+ years of policy disasters: absence of the slightest understanding of the real world and senseless adherence to ruinous theories, such as “socialism.”

  • I suspect for this pope, the past (including what he said two days ago) is another country, and borders are closed.

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Rockville Rape

Tuesday, March 21, AD 2017



A 14 year old girl was allegedly brutally raped in a boys’ bathroom at Rockville High School by two illegal aliens, 18 and 17 years old.  This comes at a time when Rockville, Maryland was considering becoming a sanctuary city.  The Superintendent of Montgomery County Schools, Jack Smith, seems a lot more concerned about protecting illegal aliens than he does about protecting his female students from rape.


The two suspects, Henry Sanchez-Milian, 18, and Jose O. Montano, 17, who was charged as an adult, are being held without bail. Montgomery Schools Superintendent Jack Smith told reporters that both suspects had been in a special program for non-English speakers at the high school and not in classes with the victim.

Smith pushed back hard against questions about whether the rape case should affect local efforts to comply with federal law, which guarantees a free public education to any child living in the United States, regardless of citizenship status.

“It’s totally inappropriate to suggest that we’re going to deny a 14-year-old, a 16-year-old, an ­18-year-old an education because of a horrible thing that happened in our schools last Thursday,” Smith said. “Some have tried to make this into a question and issue of immigration . . . but we serve every student who walks through our doors.”

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16 Responses to Rockville Rape

  • Are you crazy, protect the rapist, next you blame the victim! No, this was an illegal alien grown man who with the help of another illegal alien 17 year old, orally, anally and vaginally raped a child. No there is place for them in this country. The only reason to keep them here is for life in prison!

  • My prayers are with the fourteen year old this morning. May she find a sanctuary that will help her heal emotionally and physically.

    Illegal immigrants who are learning English and committing crimes such as rape….read and understand this word punks; Incarceration! Deportation will only work if they are incarcerated when they return to their homeland.

    Liberal Maryland will probably give them four weeks of sensitivity training, box of condoms from local planned parenthood and a fake voters ID.

  • Possibility of life in prison;


    The slack jawed Obama administration should be reminded of the role they played in this horrible act of violence.

  • Once again, liberals don’t give a fig for the very groups they claim to represent. They stand for no higher value other than the acquisition of power. In the end, they just don’t care about that 14 year old girl. Now, let some privileged white male students do such a thing, and liberal outrage will pour forth.

  • Life inprisonment, AC? Nah, I see a tree with some strange fruit hanging from it!

  • And the sound of crickets from the National Organization for Women.

  • Well, I had to dig to find this story. There was one story about a 14 year old being shot that came up first. I thought that was the story here. It took a few to find this one, and reports of it that weren’t coming from more conservative outlets. And then it was the WP of all places.

  • About 1960, Martin Meyer published “The Schools,” on elf his books about the professions. Tio show that nothing has changed, I quote something he wrote. Public school administration is a form of appointive politics. “ No institution is more political in the broad sense than the public schools, a fact to which people seem oblivious. I had an-mail exchange with a school board member, from another district. I had pointe out that a school district is a government agency. She demurred. Not us, she said. Did she think that she was not as much as elected official as her state representative? Did she and her colleagues not set policy? No ones so blind as he who will not see. IAC, the Superintendent ought too resign and if he will not than he should be fired. This is the downside of the large salaries and generous perks awarded by the school district.

  • I state my credentials because context for my comments is necessary.

    I am an attorney and have been in the immigration Civil Service for more than twenty years. What I am writing are my own perceptions and views and do not, in any way, represent the views of my agency. They are not based upon any information not publicly available.

    This is a disturbing case for a number of reasons:

    1) I note that the sine qua non of education has switched from “that which is good for students” (plural) to “that which is good for the student” (singular). When I was in elementary school, that which was disruptive to the many was removed and that which affected the individual was tolerated. I was bullied. Some was earned and some was not but it was clear that the many were the concern, not the one. Now, the opposite is true.

    Here, we have 17 and 18 year old “freshmen” in class with 14 year old children. Note that I am not saying “what did they expect would happen” because normal 17 and 18 year old humans do not sodomize 14 year old children. I am pointing to the reality that the school felt that it had an obligation to the 17 and 18 year olds that was more serious and significant than their obligation to the student body as a whole. “We have to help THAT person” is the touchstone, not “how do we deliver the best education possible, for the greatest percentage of our students?”

    I am not saying that the other was better. As noted above, I was bullied and bullying is most unpleasant. What I AM saying is that public education cannot be so individualized that no holistic analysis of what is good and useful is done. This leads to my second point that these “unaccompanied minors” should never have been in that school at all.

    2) Central America has imploded. That is the reality that the media chooses not to cover. The children FROM Central America and Venezuela are in a position not dissimilar to the child soldiers of Africa: they have witnessed and, in many cases, directly experienced real horror.

    I dealt with a child soldier case back in the mid-1990s in which the man had been kidnapped and used as a sex slave when he was seven. By age eleven, he was gleefully chopping off the hands of babies and toddlers. He had been so seriously warped by his experiences that I suggest he was barely human anymore.

    What, exactly, does one do with such a one?

    His Holiness talks about charity in the context of immigration, and so he should, but these rapists illustrate a certain reality of immigration and that is that some people are so seriously damaged that they will never be safe to be around.

    I do not know these boys’ histories. My guess is that, if one looks at them, they have no small experience with sexual abuse and that this is not the first sexual assault they have participated in. We DO know that sexual assault is frighteningly common in Central America and that a very large percentage of young people have been raped and have raped.

    One case I dealt with a few years ago was of a young woman whose mother put her on the pill in her home country, before entrusting her to the care of smugglers THAT SHE KNEW WOULD BE RAPING HER. Her mother expressly told her to go with it, lest she be hurt, and, so, she was raped many times by the smugglers, people smuggled with her, and even authorities in Central America and Mexico… All so that she could come to the US as an “unaccompanied minor.”

    This brings me to my third point: The Obama Administration owns this problem, lock, stock, and barrel.

    3) The Obama Administration openly encouraged unaccompanied minors to come to the US. By using US tax dollars to complete the smuggling from the border to relatives in the interior of the US, the message got out that IF one got one’s kids to the US, the US would take care of them. This encouraged folks to send their kids to the US, despite all of those risks and, in some cases, BECAUSE of all of those risks.

    We talk about “vetting” of refugees and it is wise to do so but the vetting of these unaccompanied minors was nearly nothing. They show up at the border with no documents. An inspector or Border Patrol Officer interviews them and fingerprints them. If the fingerprints come back negative… Which they should if they person hasn’t been here before, and the CLAIM to be under 21, they were either permitted to go to their intended destination, were taken to a detention center (this is for the clearly too young to be let go), or taken to their intended destination.

    Stated differently, if you got to the US, claimed to be under 21, and had no prior US arrests, we let you settle here… Ostensibly awaiting an immigration hearing that would be no less than three years in the future IF you showed for that hearing at all.

    This leads to my last point: Having admitted “adults,” for, let us be hones, the boys in this horror are not “kids,” the school should have segregated them from the others. It was fundamentally unwise to let the boys wander about, unnoticed.

    The range of assaults here is staggering. I have no idea how long sexual assault takes but it cannot have been a quick crime for them to have done all that was reportedly done to her… And, no one noticed.

    Thanks for your patience here but this is a case that I find remarkably disturbing and it is cathartic to say what I think about it.

  • I doubt there’s any federal statute which does or could compel states to enroll illegal aliens. They’re confusing federal law with arbitrary exercises of judicial wilfullness.

  • People like Smith would much rather see our daughters raped and murdered than see the immigration laws of our nation enforced.

    Ignoring violent crime does not disrupt the Democratic Party’s vote farming operation. Enforcing the immigration laws does.

  • Superintendent Smith’s “Equity Initiatives Unit” ? It’s going to make that young victim whole again? Prevent another crime? Liberal Lala Land. What if the victim had herself been an illegal? It probably wouldn’t have been reported. When an underclass like illegals is created all sorts of crimes by illegals upon illegals the cl are not reported or under reported for the obvious reason.

  • The (open-borders, bring-in millions of Muslims) establishment and elites don’t care about ordinary Americans. The agenda (fundamentally transform/wreck evil, racist Americans in fly-over country and reduce labor costs) is all and all.

    This woman’s poor daughter was expendable. She was not even “collateral damage.”

    This is one of the many ticking time bombs Obama left behind.

    In addition to hundreds of unnecessary (they should not be here) murders and rapes, Obama overloaded, and will bankrupt, many states’ social programs with tens of millions of illegal immigrants.

  • That is, of course, correct, T. Shaw: an 18 year old, who cannot read or write in their own language, who has no skills, and has an horrific life history, cannot be other than a burden on the State.

    One of the things I have noticed about the Left is that they are ALL about institutional change for things like race and sex discrimination but then refuse to even look at institutional matters when the issue does not fit the narrative. What I mean is that we hear “you may not have MEANT to discriminate but that is the effect so you must institute dubious, expensive, and potentially disastrous institutional changes to fix it” but “why would we bring adults here as though they were children and then put them in proximity to our children, without vetting them” is racist and xenophobic.

  • Just another reminder that the bottom line of multiculturalism is that it is a man’s world. And a particularly unpleasant man at that.

  • Mr. Spalding, We can take off the gloves and appropriately act given the nature of the war. It is a war for America, for our children, for our liberties , for our way of life. These evil people hate you and me. They hate America and the uses Americans we make of our liberties. Ergo., when you defend America you are a “racist,” a “xenophobe,” “etc.”

    Obama misspent eight years wrecking America and our way of life. Hillary would have finished us off.

    Therefore, I am blessed when evil people falsely call me “racist,” “xenophobe,” and sorts of evil things for so did evil men persecute the Jesus and the prophets before me.

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A Century of Vera Lynn

Tuesday, March 21, AD 2017



The singing voice of Great Britain during World War II, Dame Vera Lynn is one hundred years old.  The Sweetheart of the Forces, she was tireless in her performances for the troops during World War II, and the veterans of that conflict have always held her in high esteem.  Contrary to the usual dismal history of the entertainment industry, she enjoyed a life long love affair with her one and only husband until he died in 1998.  Throughout her long life she has  championed disabled servicemen and disabled kids.   She is a living refutation of the falsehood that the good die young.


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One Response to A Century of Vera Lynn

  • Vera Lynn is but one example of the strong women who went to toe with the entertainment industry and showed what guts and talent can do, God continue to bless her.

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Trump and Teddy?

Tuesday, March 21, AD 2017

Matter! Matter! Why, everybody’s gone crazy! What is the matter with all of you? Here’s this convention going headlong for Roosevelt for Vice President. Don’t any of you realize that there’s only one life between that madman and the Presidency? Platt and Quay are no better than idiots! What harm can he do as Governor of New York compared to the damage he will do as President if McKinley should die?

Ohio Senator Mark Hanna at the Republican Convention of 1900

I have been rolling around in my brain the thought that as President Donald Trump reminds me of Theodore Roosevelt.  At first glance the two New Yorkers seem entirely dissimilar with Roosevelt the scholar turned politician who led the charge up San Juan Hill having little in common with the blue collar billionaire.  However, in their shared endless energy, their desire to attack intractable problems, their appeal to restoring America greatness, their willingness to make enemies of the powers that be, etc. they do strike me as quite similar and unlike most other Presidents. Stephen Beale at The American Conservative makes the case for Trump being in the same mold as The Colonel:

Roosevelt—a career politician who sought military service, an avid outdoorsman who hunted elephants and explored the Amazon, and an intellectually curious historian who dabbled in anthropology and zoology—might seem an unlikely model for Trump.

But in terms of policy, the parallels are legion.  

On trade, Roosevelt was—like most Republicans then and Trump now—a proud protectionist. “Thank God I am not a free-trader. In this country pernicious indulgence in the doctrine of free trade seems inevitably to produce a fatty degeneration of the moral fibre,” Roosevelt wrote in an 1895 letter to his friend Senator Henry Cabot Lodge.

Roosevelt was also a committed immigration restrictionist. In 1903, after radical socialists had bombed Haymarket Square in Chicago and assassinated his predecessor, Roosevelt signed into law a ban on anarchists—including those who professed radical political views, even if they didn’t have any actual terrorist affiliation. Four years later, another law excluded “idiots, imbeciles, feeble-minded persons,” prostitutes, those with certain medical conditions, such as epileptics, and polygamists, or even those who believed in polygamy. Notably this last provision was wielded against Muslim immigrants.  

Roosevelt famously railed against “hyphenated Americanism” and declared that America was not a “mosaic of nationalities.” In language that rings as distinctly Trumpian today, Roosevelt demanded total allegiance and nothing else from American citizens, native and naturalized alike: “A square deal for all Americans means relentless attack on all men in this country who are not straight-out Americans and nothing else.”

Roosevelt built up the military, specifically the Navy, which he showed off to the world as the “Great White Fleet.” Both presidents have a defining public works project. For Trump, it’s the border wall. For Roosevelt, it was the Panama Canal. As with Trump, Roosevelt ruffled international feathers with his proposal, even sparking the secession of Panama from Columbia.

As an undergraduate student at Harvard, Roosevelt had fallen under the influence of Hegelian philosophy, which holds to an evolutionary view of history. He came to believe that the old view of a limited government entrusted with the protection of natural rights was outmoded. Instead, Roosevelt championed an exalted view of executive power that was limited only by what the Constitution explicitly said it could not do. As he put it in his autobiography:

I declined to adopt the view that what was imperatively necessary for the Nation could not be done by the President unless he could find some specific authorization to do it. My belief was that it was not only his right but his duty to do anything that the needs of the Nation demanded unless such action was forbidden by the Constitution or by the laws. Under this interpretation of executive power I did and caused to be done many things not previously done by the President and the heads of departments.

More than anyone since Lincoln, Roosevelt expanded executive power, laying the foundations for the modern presidency. He sought to govern by executive order as much as possible, issuing a whopping 1,081 orders—nearly six times as many as his predecessor and still the fourth highest overall in the history of the U.S. presidency. (His cousin FDR holds the record at 3,721. Woodrow Wilson and Calvin Coolidge rank second and third at 1,803, and 1,203, respectively.)

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One Response to Trump and Teddy?

  • TR was until 1905 restrained by his need to get elected in hi shown right, and even afterwards by the power of the Republican party. Not until 1912 did he let ‘er rip.The victor in that election enlarged the role of the Presidency far beyond what TR had. Trump is 70 years old and all he needs to win re-election is to hold on to his base.

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March 21: 1917: Loretta Perfectus Walsh Enists in the Navy

Tuesday, March 21, AD 2017

A bit of naval history was made a hundred years ago when twenty year old Loretta Perfectus Walsh enlisted in the Navy as a Yeoman F, becoming the first woman to be a member of the US military.  Some 13,000 women would serve in the Navy as Yeomen, or Yeomanettes as they were often unofficially called,  during World War I as clerical personnel, freeing up men for sea duty.  Walsh served her four year tour and tragically died of tuberculosis at age 29 in 1925.  She was buried in Saint Patrick’s Cemetery in Olyphant, Pennsylvania.  Her tombstone bears the following inscription:

Loretta Perfectus Walsh
April 22, 1896–August 6, 1925
Woman and Patriot
First of those enrolled in the United States Naval Service
World War 1917–1919
Her comrades dedicate this monument
to keep alive forever
memories of the sacrifice and devotion of womanhoo

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PopeWatch: Exorcists

Tuesday, March 21, AD 2017

PopeWatch agrees with this:

Pope Francis on Friday said confessors “should not hesitate” to refer penitents to exorcists, if they are suffering from “genuine spiritual disturbances.”

The pope was speaking to hundreds of priests taking a course on confession organized by the Apostolic Penitentiary, the Vatican court which deals with issues surrounding the sacrament.

Francis said having good confessors “was more useful than ever,” and “even necessary in our times,” and said churches should make confession more available to the faithful.

He said a good confessor must be a true friend of Jesus, a man of the Spirit, and should make the confessional a place of evangelization.

The pontiff said confessors are called to venture to the “peripheries of evil and sin,” and those who approach the confessional may come from the most desperate situations.

“They could also have spiritual disturbances, whose nature should be submitted to careful discernment,” Francis said, “taking into account all the existential, ecclesial, natural and supernatural circumstances.”

Francis was careful to point out priests should work with professionals to make sure a person is not suffering from psychological disorders, and again emphasized “discernment is necessary.”

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3 Responses to PopeWatch: Exorcists

  • Pope Francis gets an atta-boy for this one. But how difficult it is to find the thread of consistency in his various statements. Let us pray for Pope Francis.

  • Bravo to Pope Francis. In this age of increasing drugs use, mental illness, and TV shows, books and websites on the occult, it must be difficult for priests and the medical establishment to differentiate
    between sin, physical and mental ill health and genuine possession. Who ever thought that Black Masses would be in the news or a subject of Sunday homilies or there’d be an exhibition of OUIJA boards at SFO? The church is quiet about actual possession cases but I have to wonder if cases are up in the civilized world? Used to be that the missionaries to pagan countries were more apt to see possession.

  • I remember there was a post about demons, but I put off reading it. Can possession of a person be intermittent?

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March 20, 1917: Lansing Memorandum

Monday, March 20, AD 2017

On March 17, 1917, President Wilson met with his Cabinet to consider the question of whether the US should enter the Great War.  Fortunately for historians of this period, Secretary of State Robert Lansing drafted a detailed memorandum of the meeting:

The Cabinet Meeting of today I consider the most momentous and therefore, the most historic of any of those which have been held since I became Secretary of State, since it involved, unless a miracle occurs the question of war with Germany and the abandonment of the policy of neutrality which has been pursued for two years and a half….

The corridors of the State Department and Executive Office swarmed with press correspondents seeking to get some inkling of what would be done from passing officials. It was through these eager crowds of news-gatherers that I forced my way at half-past two Tuesday afternoon under a bombardment of questions, to which I made no reply, and entered the Cabinet room where all the other members had arrived.

Three minutes later the President came in and passed to his place at the head of the table shaking hands with each member and smiling as genially and composedly as if nothing of importance was to be considered. Composure is a marked characteristic of the President. Nothing ruffles the calmness of his manner or address. It has a sobering effect on all who sit with him in council. Excitement would seem very much out of place at the Cabinet table with Woodrow Wilson presiding.

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PopeWatch: Dirty Money

Monday, March 20, AD 2017


When it comes to Vatican shenanigans, always follow the money.  Details are coming out about the Knights of Malta and potentially dirty money, and it all stinks to high heaven.  Edward Pentin at National Catholic Register gives us the details:

Germany’s mass-selling Bild newspaper has reported that the Grand Chancellor of the Order of Malta, Baron Albrecht Freiherr von Boeselager, accepted a 30 million Swiss franc donation ($31 million) on behalf of the Order from what Bild calls “a dubious trust” in Geneva. Boeselager denies any wrongdoing.

The Grand Chancellor told the newspaper that over a seven-year period, the Order would be drawing 30 million Swiss francs from the fund, which Bild calls by its acronym CPVG. So far, the Order has received 3 million francs from the trust, whose existence the Register first brought to public attention in January.

Bild correspondent Nikolaus Harbusch, a well known investigative reporter in Germany specializing in financial crimes, reports that the trustee, whom the newspaper names simply as Ariane S., signed a framework agreement with Boeselager to accept the money on March 1. The agreement came just weeks after Boeselager was reinstated as Grand Chancellor following his dismissal in December by the Order’s former Grand Master Fra’ Matthew Festing.

Ariane S., who also appears in the so-called “Panama Papers”, denied in a Jan. 6 email to the Register that she or her organization had any connection to the Order of Malta. In her correspondence with the Register, she referenced Swiss law and criminal penalties if the name of the trust or its members, or allegations about the trust, were published.

Boeselager and other members of the Order have had dealings with the trust since 2010, according to documentation obtained by the Register, but Fra’ Festing was unaware of its existence until only recently, after asking Boeselager directly about it.

The Grand Chancellor told Bild he had had lawyers check that the trust, which is now registered in New Zealand, was clean, and subsequently the Order’s government unanimously approved of the fund. He said he did not know details about the donor, Mr. Latour — only that the money came from a wealthy French family, and that the funds had been put into a foundation before the Second World War. “Since then there has been only investment, that’s all that I know,” he said.

“We really do not know the details because our donor is the CPVG trust and not ‘Mr. Latour’ personally,” Boeselager said — adding that the donor, so far only known as Mr. Latour, had “demanded anonymity from the trust and we had to accept that.”

Asked by Bild if it could be dirty money, Boeselager said: “To the best of our knowledge, no.”
According to the donor’s wishes, the Order of Malta was due to receive a quarter of the trust’s assets out of a total fund amounting to 120 million Swiss francs.

Bild revealed that, on the instruction of the Order, the public prosecutor in Geneva had put a freeze on the money in order to determine whether the trustee was guilty of embezzlement. The newspaper’s own investigations, using its own experts, leads them to believe that the assets in France had never been taxed properly.

Boeselager told Bild that the Order has withdrawn its “complaint against the trustee, since the accusation was baseless and no one suffered any harm.” He said the 30 million francs was by far the largest cash donation the Order has received over the past 10 years.

According to Boeselager, the Order has a policy for rejecting “dirty money,” and said it has turned down two donations from Switzerland, and one from the United States. “If money is dirty, we will not take it,” he said.

He said that, in the case of the CPVG trust, the Order carried out a “thorough risk analysis” and sees “no reason to place the order on a money laundering list. “

In the interview, Boeselager rejected the accusation that he wants to turn the Order into a normal non-governmental organization, saying anyone who makes such a charge doesn’t “know me at all” and that “the opposite is true.”

“We are continuing with our mission: evangelization through assistance and charity,” he said.

Boeselager also revealed he would be reducing the autonomy of the Grand Master, who will be “bound in the future to the decisions of the government of the Order.” His comment contrasts with the view of Fra’ Festing, who had privately complained that Boeselager had been pursuing his own policies and activities in the Order independently, without the Grand Master’s full knowledge.

Many questions, however, remain unanswered, including:

why the five-member Holy See commission set up to look into Boeselager’s dismissal was made up of three individuals closely associated with the trust, none of whom wished to speak publicly about it;
why the commission’s work was rushed and completed ahead of schedule, but in time for Boeselager to be reinstated and to withdraw the complaint against the trustee;
what the precise reasons were for Boeselager’s brother, Georg, being appointed to the board of the Vatican Bank in December;
and why the trustee was so threatening and reluctant to have any basic information related to the CPVG trust published, including its name.

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One Response to PopeWatch: Dirty Money

  • Are we sure this isn’t in an event in Chicago? Did they move the Vatican lately? How many condoms can be distributed with $31 million …?

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Saints of Lent: Saint Oliver Plunkett

Sunday, March 19, AD 2017



Lent is a grand time to confront evil, both that evil which stains our souls, and the evil external to us.  Throughout the history of the Church there have been saints who risked all to bravely confront the popular evils of their time.  This Lent on each Sunday we will be looking at some of those saints.  We began with Saint Athanasius.  Go here to read about him.  Next we looked at Saint John Fisher.  Go here to read about him.  Today we turn to Saint Oliver Plunkett.

Oliver Plunkett first saw the light of day on November 1, 1625 in Loughcrew, County Meath, Ireland, a scion of an Irish-Norman family.  Educated by his cousin Patrick Plunkett, Abbot of Saint Mary’s in Dublin and a future bishop, Oliver decided at a young age that he wished to become a priest, and in 1647 he went to study for the priesthood in Rome at the Irish College.  Ordained in 1654, he acted as the representative of the Irish bishops in Rome.

While performing duties as a Professor of Theology at the College of Propaganda Fide, he never ceased speaking out on behalf of the suffering Church in Ireland, enduring massacre and suppression under the brutal Cromwellian Conquest.  On November 30, 1669 he was consecrated Archbishop of Armagh.

In Ireland he went at his duties with a will, traveling up and down the country confirming Catholics, the sacrament often being administered in huge open air masses.  He joyously shared the sufferings of his persecuted flock, often living on a little oat bread as he brought Christ to his people.  He attacked drunkenness as being a prime curse of the priesthood in Ireland and championed education for the youth of the Emerald Isle.

A renewed period of persecution struck Ireland in 1673, with the churches being closed, and the schools disbanded.  The Jesuit college at Drogheda that Plunkett had established was leveled.  With a price on his head, he refused to go into exile and traveled in disguise.    The Archbishop carried on with his duties, undeterred that his episcopal palace was usually a simple peasant’s hut. 

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10 Responses to Saints of Lent: Saint Oliver Plunkett

  • St. Oliver Plunkett, pray for us. “. . . they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. ‘For this reason, they are before the throne of God; and they serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne will spread His tabernacle over them. They will hunger no longer, nor thirst anymore; nor will the sun beat down on them, nor any heat;’. . . ” Revelation 7:14 – 17. Not totally apropos , but it touches the heart.

  • Archbishop of County Armagh.


    Thanks for the post.
    A future cousin or nephew perhaps, Joseph Mary Plunkett, the poet?
    I wonder.

    The poem; I see His blood upon the rose, is a golden thread.

    I see His blood upon the rose, And in the stars the glory of His eyes.
    His body gleams amid eternal snows, His tears fall from the skies.
    I see his face in every flower. The thunder and the singing of the birds are but His voice – and craven by His power Rocks are His written words.
    All pathways by His feet are worn, His strong heart stirs the ever beating sea.
    His crown of thorns is twined with every thorn, His Cross is every tree.

    Loving and compassionate.
    The families from County Armagh.
    I miss you Mom. Joan Taylor Nachazel
    d. November 9th 2016. The feast of the Bishop of County Armagh, Saint Benignus. d.467 ( a disciple of St. Patrick.)

  • “He was the last person executed for the Faith in England.”

    That is true, but the next century witnessed a persecution of the Catholic clergy in Scotland, with a savagery unknown in Europe, since Clovis was sealed with the Cross.

    Of the priests who had accompanied the Prince in the Jacobite Rising of 1745, Rev Mr Colin Campbell of Morar was killed at Culloden; although unarmed, he was shot down in cold blood by Hessian mercenaries, whilst trying to rally the fugitives for one last charge. Rev Mr Allan MacDonald, rector of the seminary at Scalan, near Glenlivet was imprisoned for a year in a military garrison and then ordered to leave the country. Scalan itself was burned on the orders of the Duke of Cumberland, as a “nest of traitors.” Rev Mr Aeneas McGillis of Glengarry was put to the horn (outlawed) and fled the country.

    Of those who had stayed at home, but had “prayed for the Pretender,” Rev Mr Neil McFie of the Rough Bounds, Rev Mr Alexander Forrester of Uist and Rev Mr James Grant of Barra were bundled on board ship and deported to France, without the formality of a trial. Rev Mr William Harrison of the Rough Bounds was later captured carrying Jacobite dispatches and similarly deported.

    In 1756, Bishop Hugh MacDonald, the Apostolic Visitor for the Highlands was put on trial under the obsolete act “anent Jesuits, priests, or trafficking papists” His real offence, in the eyes of the London government was the simple act of blessing the Prince’s standard, when he raised it at the memorable gathering at Glenfinnan on 19 August 1745. Sentenced to be banished furth of the realm, with certification that if he ever returned, being still papist, he should be punished with death, he ignored the sentence and the local authorities in the Highlands winked at it.

  • Lying and personal destruction have been around in politics for a long time. We’re seeing it today in Congress.

  • It seems as if I have eccentric and eclectic interests. One of which is readings on Irish, English, Spanish “interactions” in the 16th and 7th centuries. One book, The Twilight Lords, I own reports on the November 1580 siege and massacre (after surrender) of 700 Italian soldiers at Fort del Oro, Smerwick, on the extreme west coast of Ireland.

    A namesake of Oliver Plunkett was present at the fort. He cruelly lost his life. His arms and legs were broken. HE was left to lie for three days without food or water. Then, he hanged, drawn, and quartered. It was meant as a warning. After the Saxons left, the local people buried the dead, raised a cross in their memory, and “resigned themselves to undying hatred,” according to the author, Richard Berleth.

    Another point of information from my readings is that 17th century Ireland was not untouched by the religion of peace. In 1631, Algerine/Muslim pirates raided the village of Baltimore, County Cork kidnapping 107 Irish men, women and children who were sold into slavery in North Africa. Twenty-first century American and Europeans elites have precious little concern for the interests or safety of the common man. In 1631, the local Anglo-Irish aristocrat, Richard Boyle, refused to ransom the 107 poor souls.

  • Donald R McClarey

    You may find the sequel not without interest. Bishop Hugh had to rebuild the Church in the Highlands and Islands more or less from scratch. Himself the son of Alexander MacDonald of Morar and of Mary, daughter of Ranald MacDonald of Kinlochmoidart, he recruited his priests mostly among the Highland gentry; ordained ad titulum patrimonii sui and unpaid, they stayed with relatives, or with influential friends, and served their native place. Thus we have Alexander MacDonald of the Scotus family living in Knoydart; Austen MacDonald of Glenaladale in Moidart; Allan MacDonald of Morar’s family living in the Morar area; James MacDonald, son of John MacDonald of Guidall in the Rough Bounds, and so on. Bishop Hugh was succeeded by his nephew, John MacDonald.

  • MPS,
    Perhaps you can clarify… Clan Lamont, which was one Scottish clan that remained Catholic, faced severe persecution and was forced to sell their land and leave. Maybe you know more about it. My mother is a McLuckie, a relation of the Lamonts.

  • “Twenty-first century American and Europeans elites have precious little concern for the interests or safety for the common man.” -T. Shaw

    If common man describes Muslims I would disagree. The elites children will be subject to Sharia law and praising Allah, the false one, or face extreme consequences. This is islamophobia, they would say, but the history of Islamic conquest begs to differ.

    A political cartoon that was posted a week or so ago had made the poetic parallel of immigration into the U.S. and the extreme vetting of the entrance into Heaven. Walls? Yes sir. Gate? Pearly ones at that. Gate keeper? Absolutely.

    The point of course is privilege.
    The destruction and mayhem of certain EU city districts who have “mercifully,” opened the boarders is case in point.
    Demanding and arrogant to the point of rape and pillage.

    No thanks.

    President Trump hold fast!

  • Penguins Fan wrote, “Clan Lamont, which was one Scottish clan that remained Catholic…”
    Indeed it did. The current Chief of the Name and Arms of Lamont is Fr Peter Noel Lamont, a parish priest in Sydney. The family emigrated to Australia at the end of the 19th century.

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Kelly’s Irish Brigade

Saturday, March 18, AD 2017


(I first posted this in 2010.  Over they years it has proven quite popular judging from the number of hits it has received, so I thought this weekend would be a good one to post it again.)

I have had a few posts, here, here  and here, on the famous Irish Brigade that fought for the Union in the Army of the Potomac.  There were however other Irish units, North and South.  This song celebrates Kelly’s Irish Brigade that fought for the Confederacy in the West.  The Brigade was actually a regiment, the Washington Blues, organized by Joseph Kelly, a grocer in Saint Louis, prior to the Civil War.  Kelly was an Irish immigrant as were most of the men in his regiment.  They provided good service for the Confederacy, and you may read about them here.

Listen all ye that hold communion
With Southern Confederates who are bold,
And I will tell you of some men for the Union
Who in northern ranks were enrolled;
They came to Missouri in their glory
And thought at their might we’d be dismayed;
But they soon had a different story
When they met Kelly’s Irish Brigade.

When they met with the Irish Brigade me boys
When they met with the Irish Brigade
Didn’t those cowardly Lincolnites tremble
When they met with the Irish Brigade.

They have called us rebels and traitors,
But themselves have thrown off that name of late.
They were called it by the English invaders
At home in the eve of ninety eight
The name to us is not a new one though,
Tis one that shall never degrade
Any true-hearted Irishmen
In the ranks of Kelly’s Irish Brigade.


Well they dare not call us invaders,
‘Tis but state rights and liberty we ask;
And Missouri, we will ever defend her,
No matter how hard may be the task.
Then let true Irishmen assemble,
Let the voice of Missouri be obeyed;
And the northern fanatics will tremble
When again they meet Kelly’s Irish Brigade.



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PopeWatch: Bugged

Saturday, March 18, AD 2017



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


The Vatican has refused to say whether an apology was in the works after eavesdropping allegations were made by Francis last week against his predecessor.

Pope Francis’ claim that his confessional was wiretapped by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has yet to be supported by evidence, but the Pontiff isn’t ready to apologize for the accusation just yet.

“Let’s not get ahead of ourselves,” Director of the Holy See Press Office Greg Burke told reporters on Friday when asked if Francis would apologize to Pope Benedict if his allegations were debunked. “I think it’s important to see where this goes, and I don’t want to prejudge the investigation at this time.”

Pope Francis has alleged in a number of tweets last Saturday that Benedict had let Vatican officials conduct surveillance on his Buenos Aires confessional before becoming pope.

“Terrible! Just found out that Benedict had my ‘wires tapped’ in San Roberto Bellarmino Church In Buenos Aires just before my papal victory. Nothing found!”


Go here to read the comments.  PopeWatch attempted to contact the Vatican for comment, but when his phone began to make odd sounds like a Bulgarian singing a Gregorian chant backwards, PopeWatch hastily ended the call.

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3 Responses to PopeWatch: Bugged

  • Believe it or not, Fr. Raymond de Souza actually took this seriously. He took to Facebook warning people that this was fake news. A Catholic media figure who is too ignorant to realize EOTT is satire. Now there’s a real hoot for you. Sad too, when you think about it.

  • The international C.H.A.O.S. group is behind the wiretap. They were behind the Crow drone in the infamous Peace Dove attack at the Vatican a few years ago;

    CHAOS is; Catholics Honoring Another Oracle than holy Spirit.

    This movement is catching on and some believe woman Priest’s​ will be the next big development since the election of its first Pope.

  • Fr. de Souza was right to spell it out. I knew several who thought Dan Brown’s “Da Vinci Code” was non-fiction.

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Why Is St. Patrick’s Day a Big Deal?

Friday, March 17, AD 2017

The Catholic Geeks can tell you!

Their opening:
There are a few days of the year based around Catholic holidays that have become heavily secularized. Christmas, of course, is the big offender in many eyes, and every year we have reports from the tinsel-choked and eggnog-spilled trenches of the “War on Christmas.” To a lesser extent, the same is true of Easter, while it seems like fewer and fewer people know who St. Valentine even is. With that, it’s probably no surprise that St. Patrick’s Day is has just become a day to celebrate being Irish.

But why? Why do we make such a big deal out of this day in the United States, to the point that some bishops offer special Lenten dispensations, even when (as it does this year) it falls on a Friday? St. Patrick’s Day isn’t even a big deal in Ireland, not compared to how we celebrate it in the United States. And corned beef isn’t even an Irish dish!

The answer is both simple and complex, and somewhat contradictory. No, it’s not actually an Irish day; but it’s rooted in being Irish. It’s a day steeped in Catholicism, and yet not in worship. And it’s a day that’s both very American and not at all, at the same time.

Go read the rest– and please share it around to all the people sniffing and sneering about horrible bad evil wrong selfish weak and probably, they imply, sinful it is that some people want to celebrate Saint Patrick’s day, including corned beef.  Not even authentically Irish!  (Psssst– neither is Pat!)

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4 Responses to Why Is St. Patrick’s Day a Big Deal?

  • For the first time in many years, I quietly celebrated (all day listened to Irish music, prayed for and thought of all those who went before me who loved me so much). I sat up and watched “The Quiet Man” thinking all the time how much Mother and Father loved it – lovely caricature that it is. More than once I prayed, “God bless John Wayne.” And, “God bless John Ford.”

    In my opinion and experience, the Irish are a people characterized by their plethora of love for family, country, and heritage; and their capacity for suffering, ” And Ireland, long a province, be a nation once again.” From “The Boys of Wexford,” “. . . Fought with heart and hand to burst in twain the galling chain and free our native land . . . ” I compare it to Washington and the Continentals in the darkest days of The American Revolution.

    Importantly, in the 1800’s the Irish came here (many starving and destitute) and were abused, vilified (Irish need not apply) and exploited. They somehow managed not to hate though they were hated. Reader, let that sink in. Their descendants are among the best-assimilated, best-educated, most successful of Americans.

    I’m old enough to remember when the NYC Parade was about honoring St. Patrick, Irish culture (whatever that is), “England Out Of Ireland,” and the Faith. Today, I can walk into a saloon in Woodside, Queens or Woodlawn, the Bronx and think I am in Dublin. I could go to Gaelic Park, in the Bronx, and see a hurling or Irish football game and hear hundreds of Irish accents. There have to be 600 pipe bands and similar numbers of Irish step-dance schools.

    Now, some cranks use St. Patrick to advertise/promulgate anti-Catholic (in the “antichrist” sense) memes like Irish LGBT (Liberty, Guns, Booze, Trump?). Apparently, the Boston parade is not allowing to peddle their cause a group named “Veterans For Peace.” I doubt if they’re allowing “Veterans For Victory” to advertise, either.

    Despite the dispensation, we had planned to observe the Lenten Friday discipline. But, our youngest sons (around lunch time) asked if we were. We ran out, bought the fixings, and made the corned beef and cabbage. Why should I not give him (and his fiancée – they are completing their pre-Cana preps) that which was given to me?

  • Congratulations on the future daughter in law!

  • For decades, my mother was led to believe – as a McLuckie – that she was Irish, not Scot. Well, that wasn’t the case. The McLuckies are a sept family of the grand and noble Clan Lamont. However, the missus has Irish heritage – proven by a DNA test – so my sons have Irish blood in them. For a long time, Spain granted citizenship to any Irish who could make it to Spain, most certainly due to the shared Catholic faith of both nations. May they both become Catholic again.

  • Penguins Fan, your comment on the Spanish – Irish link might explain why Costello and Kinsella, Irish surnames, look Spanish. Perhaps sailors from wrecked Armada ships made it ashore the Irish coast and are the source of the Black Irish?
    In our little mission Father arranged a buffet lunch of corned beef and cabbage with soda bread prior to the info lecture on caregiving and caregivers and necessary forms. “Aging gracefully for mature adults”.
    Though there’s no Irish on either side of our families we too watched a series of films on TCM including the classics The Informer and The Quiet Man.

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Saint Patrick and the Nations Plunging in the Night

Friday, March 17, AD 2017

When Caesar’s sun fell out of the sky
And whoso hearkened right
Could only hear the plunging
Of the nations in the night.

GK Chesterton, Ballad of the White Horse

It is easy to lose sight of the historical Saint Patrick in all the fun and frolic of Saint Patrick’s Day.  He was a man of the fifth century and what a disastrous century it was for Patrick’s time and place.  The Western Empire was going down under wave after wave of barbarian invasion, pagan when they were not loosely converted Arian heretics.  Civilization was manifestly dying and Catholicism seemed to be faced with extinction, as it would almost entirely be extinguished in Patrick’s homeland of Britain in the terrible decades to come.  Patrick’s capture by Irish pirates and being held as a slave was typical of the fate of many Christians as the law and order of the old Empire became a fading utopian dream.  In these circumstances Patrick could have been forgiven for running and hiding in a cave as a Christian hermit, convinced that it was his fate and the fate of his generation to see the End Times predicted in Revelations.

Instead Patrick, after his escape from servitude, was filled with a burning zeal to convert the Irish, fired by a dream:

I saw a man coming, as it were from Ireland. His name was Victoricus, and he carried many letters, and he gave me one of them. I read the heading: “The Voice of the Irish”. As I began the letter, I imagined in that moment that I heard the voice of those very people who were near the wood of Foclut, which is beside the western sea—and they cried out, as with one voice: “We appeal to you, holy servant boy, to come and walk among us.”

Obtaining such education as could be had on the Continent, he was ordained, given the powers of a bishop, and sent back to the land of his slavery and labored night and day to bring the Irish into the light of Christ.  By the end of his life he could truly say that he had found Ireland entirely pagan and now it was mostly Christian.  His mission was one of pure Christian optimism in the face of disaster when most rational men would have told him that what he was doing was all for naught.  Instead, in the ages to come, Ireland became the fabled land of saints and scholars, where western civilization was maintained in the darkest of centuries and where the true sons and daughters of Saint Patrick, Catholic missionaries, brought the light of Christ back to lands which had forgotten Him.  It was a grand story, and no miracle attributed to Saint Patrick can surpass what he accomplished in cold historical fact.

To understand what Saint Patrick was up against, and the true miracle of what he accomplished, read below a letter of his in which he discussed the massacre of Catholic converts:

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5 Responses to Saint Patrick and the Nations Plunging in the Night

  • St. Patrick’s Breastplate, the short version,

    “Christ with me,
    Christ before me,
    Christ behind me,
    Christ in me,
    Christ beneath me,
    Christ above me,
    Christ on my right,
    Christ on my left,
    Christ when I lie down,
    Christ when I sit down,
    Christ when I arise,
    Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
    Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
    Christ in every eye that sees me,
    Christ in every ear that hears me.”

    Christ with me,
    Christ before me,
    Christ behind me,
    Christ in me,
    Christ beneath me,
    Christ above me,
    Christ on my right,
    Christ on my left,
    Christ when I lie down,
    Christ when I sit down,
    Christ when I arise,
    Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
    Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
    Christ in every eye that sees me,
    Christ in every ear that hears me.

  • OOPS – looks like I hit “paste” twice. And, the wife is telling me “There’s something wrong with your hearing!”

  • “There’s something long and it’s nearing?” T. Shaw. Less hair on my head and more in my ears…. That’s how I explain my hearing deficiency.
    Happy St.Patricks day!

  • Thank you for posting. TAC encourages one to follow threads and learn somethings new. The letter made me look up that time in history; nations plunging into the night indeed. I had never read more than the basics about the saint’s life and was not aware that some of his writings still existed. His father was a British Roman cavalry officer, a decurion of some means. Patrick sold his birthright to finance his travels – no second collection for the foreign missions for him.

  • Thanks for St. Patrick’s Breastplate – I couldn’t get into a website that had it. Sometimes I need to hear or see words twice.

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PopeWatch: Saint Patrick Weeps

Friday, March 17, AD 2017


Phil Lawler at Catholic Culture demonstrates that if you are a faithful Catholic cleric in this pontificate, you have a target on your back:


In Agatha Christie’s classic Murder on the Orient Express, the great detective Hercule Poirot faces an unusual challenge. There are too many suspects—too many people with obvious motives for committing the crime.

That’s how I feel about the news that Archbishop Charles Brown, the apostolic nuncio in Ireland, is being transferred to Albania.

This is not a subtle move. The Vatican is explaining that it’s just a routine rotation; every now and then papal diplomats are given new assignments. That would make sense, except that:

  • Archbishop Brown is not a career diplomat. Pope Benedict sent him to Ireland, at a time of crisis for the faith, precisely because he trusted his orthodoxy.
  • When nuncios are moved, they are usually sent to assignments of equal or greater importance. A switch from Ireland to Albania is an unmistakable demotion.

Who would have wanted Archbishop Brown removed from Dublin?

– The Irish government, which is working to end the constitutional ban on abortion? Check.

– The Irish bishops, who don’t want pressure to act like Catholic leaders? Check.

– Liberal Irish priests, for the same reason? Check.

– The lavender mafia, always? Check.

– The Secretariat of State, which resented having a non-diplomat appointed as nuncio? Check.

– Pope Francis himself, who’s busy removing all Ratzinger loyalists? Check.

Too many suspects.

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5 Responses to PopeWatch: Saint Patrick Weeps

  • “I am neither Conservative or Liberial, I’m Apostolic!” Pope Francis.

    May the snakes be lead out of the Vatican by the demand of God through His Saints! Sooner than later… Please.
    St. Patrick…Pray for us.
    St. Joseph…Pray for us.
    St. Peter…Pray for us.

    May Our Lady of Knock come to the aid of Ireland and the entire Catholic Church.

    Clean your Church Mother of God.
    Create a clean heart in Rome.
    One worthy of the Chair of Peter.

  • “..the gates of hell shall not prevail against it…”
    I’ve developed a more complete understanding, Jesus must have known that sometimes things would look like hell.
    Thank you, Pope Francis

  • David, I always view that quote about The gates of Hell….as one with a key word in it–prevail.
    Prevail to me, means that there must be one heck of a struggle first. The good guys also prevailed in WWII, but the cost of lost lives was enormous, and so it will be with souls, before this is all over.

  • Not only St Patrick but all of us should weep for the Church as the wheat and chaff are separated and mixed together by that grimmest of reapers, Pope Francis. This is truly a time of testing for all of us. Let us pray that we are able to discern the truth of God.

  • I keep feeling that the Church is leaving me and not me leaving the Curch

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Cross Examination the Lincoln Way

Thursday, March 16, AD 2017


I have always loved this scene from Young Mr. Lincoln (1939).  Few things are more enjoyable for a trial attorney than a cross examination that is tearing up the opposition case!  Of course in real life in the video above the prosecutor would be on his feet constantly objecting:  Argumentative!  Assumes facts not in evidence!  Mr. Lincoln is using a document that has not been admitted into evidence!  If Mr. Lincoln is going to testify let him be sworn in! Etc.  Of course this was done at a time when most judges tended to give a great deal of lee-way to counsel in their questioning of witnesses, especially in a frontier court and the jury might assume with frequent objections that the prosecutor was attempting to keep the truth from them and vote not guilty as a result.  In any case it is a great scene.

Adlai Stevenson, who would go on to be Vice-President of the United States, when he was young saw Lincoln in action in cross-examination:

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2 Responses to Cross Examination the Lincoln Way

  • He killed him because he could. Cass killed Scrubs because he could. The ultimate power over life and death is procreation upon which even God waits; never homicide.

  • I once appeared for the pursuers in a partnership action. There were allegations that the defender had deceived and imposed on his partners, received secret commissions from the firm’s suppliers and had used the firm’s name to secure his personal borrowings.

    It so happened that his name was Cranstoun. Now, I have a slight knowledge of Scottish armorials and genealogy and, at my request, my instructing solicitors ascertained that he was indeed an impecunious member of the noble Midlothian family of that name.

    “What is your family motto?” I asked him

    “Family motto? I really don’t recall.”

    “Let me help your memory.” [Passing him a copy of Burke, with the page marked]

    The witness read, sullenly enough, “Thou shalt want ere I want.”

    Someone in the public gallery guffawed and that little incident unsettled the witness completely.

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