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It seems Pope Francis needs to brush up on his Tertullian!

It has been reported (in The ChristLast Media, I must note) that the current Pope does not like the phrase "lead us not into temptation...

"Let no freedom be allowed to novelty, because it is not fitting that any addition should be made to antiquity. Let not the clear faith and belief of our forefathers be fouled by any muddy admixture." -- Pope Sixtus III

Friday, August 19, 2005

I get mail about racist Hawaiian legislation.

Responding to my post "A kaka bill?" ,

lee said...
Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona, who chairs the Senate Republican Policy Committee, wrote a comprehensive analysis addressing his concerns over the creation of a race-based government for Native Hawaiians and the dangerous precedents that this bill would create. The paper is available at http://rpc.senate.gov/_files/Jun2205NatHawSD.pdf.

Did you ever notice how so-called liberalism gives birth to the most illiberal ideas? Thanks for the heads up, lee.

Ah...the restorative powers of art.

I don't know about you, but reading of lawyers makes ol' Fyodor tired and cranky.

What to do?

Two words, kiddies.

Body paint.

(Many thanks to the folks from the SI swimsuit issue. They're so nice, they don't even know what a copyright lawyer looks like. I hope.)

Texas Lawyer Wins the Lottery.

A Texas jury found pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. liable Friday for the death of a man who took the once-popular painkiller Vioxx, awarding his widow $253.4 million in damages in the first of thousands of lawsuits pending across the country.

A seven-man, five-woman jury deliberated for 10 1/2 hours over two days before returning the verdict. Merck said it plans to appeal.

Plaintiff Carol Ernst began to cry when the verdict was read while her attorneys jumped up and shouted, "Amen!"

"Anyone who said they are too small town or won't understand, they are crazy," said Mrs. Ernst's lawyer, Mark Lanier. "They know truth and they know justice."

Jurors in the semi-rural county rejected Merck's argument that Ernst died of clogged arteries rather than a Vioxx-induced heart attack that led to his fatal arrhythmia.

The case drew national attention from pharmaceutical companies, lawyers, consumers, stock analysts and arbitragers as a signal of what lies ahead for Merck, which has vowed to fight the more than 4,200 state and federal Vioxx-related lawsuits pending across the country.

"Merck should come to the table and accept responsibility," Lanier said.
The damages award combines Robert Ernst's lost pay as a Wal-Mart produce manager, mental anguish, loss of companionship and punitive damages. He was 59 when he died.

The second consecutive pope to visit a synagogue.

I told you we were working things out. It may take a couple of hundred years or so, but that's cool.

Pope Benedict has said Christians and Jews must join forces on a visit to a synagogue in his native Germany.

The Pope is making his first foriegn trip since he was elected in April and he urged both religions to collaborate to ensure the "insane racist ideology" that led to the Holocaust is not allowed to resurface.

At the synagogue in Cologne, he heard a Jewish leader call on him to open all the Vatican's archives dealing with World War Two and the Holocaust.

The Pope served briefly in the Hitler Youth during the war, when membership of the Nazi paramilitary organisation was compulsory and he paused to pray at a memorial to the six million killed as he began the landmark visit.

Couldn't have a Benedict XVI story without a gratuitous Hitler Youth reference, now could we?

The Pope said: "In the 20th century, in the darkest period of German and European history, an insane racist ideology, born of neo-paganism, gave rise to the attempt, planned and systematically carried out by the regime, to exterminate European Jewry."

Catholic-Jewish relations have improved tremendously in the past half-century, particularly during the 27-year pontificate of John Paul, Benedict warned that new threats of racism and anti-Semitism were always lurking.

He said: "It is a particularly important task, since today, sadly, we are witnessing the rise of new signs of anti-Semitism and various forms of a general hostility towards foreigners.

"How can we fail to see in this a reason for concern and vigilance? The Catholic Church is committed to tolerance, respect, friendship and peace between all peoples, cultures and religions."

Il ritrovamento che il concorso del babe di notizie della televisione più caldo continua.

From top to bottom: Doppler the Weather Cat (This is getting old.) and Sarah Pihl of WSTM in central New York; Kim Kaiser (red hair!) of KDLH in Duluth, MN and Jessica Ralston of WSAZ in Charleston, WV.

The end from the inside.

Disengagement Diary: What is this country coming to?
By Orit August 17, 2005

Orit reports from Gush Katif exclusively for Israel Insider.

In all the time I've lived in Israel, my mother has never been so worried.

I've lived right near cafes where terrorist bombings have taken place, but she never had my dad and sister call me to try to convince me to be careful. Now, with brutal Israeli Police threatening to use force against stubborn infiltrators, she's all aghast. She's more afraid for my safety under the threat of a Jewish army and police force than under the threat of enemy terrorist attackers.

What is this country coming to?

Orit inside surrounded Neve Dekalim synagogue: No words.

Published: August 18, 2005

Israel Insider correspondent Orit is with the hundreds of other young women inside the Neve Dekalim synagogue, now surrounded by thousands of troops. She reported that the events of the past day had left her, at least temporarily, speechless: "I have no words."

Shame on me.

Orit, I thought you were just a pretty girl with a quirky writing style. Humblest appy-polly-loggies, sweetie. You've got guts.

May the Lord of us all watch over you and your compatriots.

The fascist reign of terror in Austin, TX continues apace.

Golly, I would have thought my freedom of religion (which is actually in the constitution) trumps your right to fornicate and then murder the resulting girls and boys (which isn't, actually).

My bad.

Austin prohibits Walgreens from refusing to fill prescriptions

Texas' capital city became the first in the nation Thursday, according to Planned Parenthood, to prohibit a pharmacy from refusing to fill prescriptions for birth control, emergency contraceptives and other medications.

The measure, approved unanimously by the Austin City Council, requires Walgreens, the city's pharmaceutical contractor, to fill prescriptions for patients on Austin's medical assistance program "in-store, without discrimination or delay," even if an individual pharmacist declines to fill a prescription based on personal beliefs.

Planned Parenthood hailed the measure as a model for other cities and a strong statement against recent high-profile cases across the country in which pharmacists cited moral objections to filling birth-control prescriptions.

"We haven't heard of any other city to do this," said Danielle Tierney, regional spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood. "Instead of waiting for a woman in Austin to get denied her prescriptions, we're putting in this extra layer of protection and taking a positive, proactive approach to the problem. Our hope is that other city councils will look at this and say, 'What a great idea. We can do this in our community, too.' "

In the Dallas area, several women have been denied prescriptions, including a rape victim who was refused the "morning after pill" and a North Richland Hills mother of two and first-grade teacher, who was denied her birth-control pills.

Joe Pojman of the Texas Alliance for Life downplayed the significance of the provision, which affects only nine Walgreens stores in Austin's medical assistance network.

"Strangely, I don't see it as such a big deal," Pojman said. "I'm just wondering if they're not grasping for something they could call a victory, to have something to show to their donors."

Michael Polzin, a spokesman for Deerfield, Ill.-based Walgreens, said the Austin provision differs from the company's general policy in only one way.

Normally, a Walgreens store manager can refer a customer elsewhere if a pharmacist objects to filling a prescription and there's no one else to fill it, Polzin said. The Austin rule requires the prescription be filled in-store.
"This program was a unique situation, and that's why we agreed to the provision," Polzin said. "I wouldn't see any reason that this would go beyond the single program."

Polzin said he thinks the company's general policy is balanced, meeting its obligation to serve customers and respecting the beliefs of its 16,000 pharmacists nationwide. (Thanks to the Houston Chronicle via CNSNews.)

Commander in Grief

Ann Coulter smokes America's latest Professional Victim.

To expiate the pain of losing her firstborn son in the Iraq war, Cindy Sheehan decided to cheer herself up by engaging in Stalinist agitprop outside President Bush's Crawford ranch. It's the strangest method of grieving I've seen since Paul Wellstone's funeral. Someone needs to teach these liberals how to mourn.


Call me old-fashioned, but a grief-stricken war mother shouldn't have her own full-time PR flack. After your third profile on "Entertainment Tonight," you're no longer a grieving mom; you're a C-list celebrity trolling for a book deal or a reality show.

We're sorry about Ms. Sheehan's son, but the entire nation was attacked on 9/11. This isn't about her personal loss. America has been under relentless attack from Islamic terrorists for 20 years, culminating in a devastating attack on U.S. soil on 9/11. It's not going to stop unless we fight back, annihilate Muslim fanatics, destroy their bases, eliminate their sponsors and end all their hope. A lot more mothers will be grieving if our military policy is: No one gets hurt!

Amen to that, Sister.

Fortunately, the Constitution vests authority to make foreign policy with the President of the United States, not with this week's sad story. But liberals think that since they have been able to produce a grieving mother, the commander in chief should step aside and let Cindy Sheehan make foreign policy for the nation. As Maureen Dowd said, it's "inhumane" for Bush not "to understand that the moral authority of parents who bury children killed in Iraq is absolute."

Dowdy, again.

I'm not sure what "moral authority" is supposed to mean in that sentence, but if it has anything to do with Cindy Sheehan’s dictating America's foreign policy, then no, it is not "absolute." It's not even conditional, provisional, fleeting, theoretical or ephemeral.

The logical, intellectual and ethical shortcomings of such a statement are staggering. If one dead son means no one can win an argument with you, how about two dead sons? What if the person arguing with you is a mother who also lost a son in Iraq and she's pro-war? Do we decide the winner with a coin toss? Or do we see if there's a woman out there who lost two children in Iraq and see what she thinks about the war?

Ann Coulter should write a political novel.

Dowd's "absolute" moral authority column demonstrates, once again, what can happen when liberals start tossing around terms they don't understand such as "absolute" and "moral." (Yes! - F.G.) It seems that the inspiration for Dowd's column was also absolute. On the rocks. Liberals demand that we listen with rapt attention to Sheehan, but she has nothing new to say about the war. At least nothing we haven't heard from Michael Moore since approximately 11 a.m., Sept. 11, 2001. It's a neo-con war; we're fighting for Israel; it's a war for oil; Bush lied, kids died; there is no connection between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda. Turn on MSNBC's "Hardball" and you can hear it right now. At this point, Cindy Sheehan is like a touring company of Air America radio: Same old script and it's not even the original cast.

These arguments didn't persuade Hillary Clinton or John McCain to vote against the war. They didn't persuade Democratic primary voters, who unceremoniously dumped anti-war candidate Howard Dean in favor of John Kerry, who voted for the war before he voted against it. And hey certainly didn't persuade a majority of American voters who re-upped George Bush's tenure as the nation's commander in chief last November But now liberals demand that we listen to the same old arguments all over again, not because Sheehan has any new insights, but because she has the ability to repel dissent by citing her grief.

On the bright side, Sheehan shows us what Democrats would say if they thought they were immunized from disagreement. Sheehan has called President Bush "that filth-spewer and warmonger." She says: "America has been killing people on this continent since it was started" and "the killing has gone on unabated for over 200 years." She calls the U.S. government a "morally repugnant system" and says, "This country is not worth dying for." I have a feeling every time this gal opens her trap, Michael Moore gets a residuals check.

Evidently, however, there are some things worth killing for. Sheehan recently said she only seemed calm "because if I started hitting something, I wouldn't stop 'til it was dead." It's a wonder Bush won't meet with her.

The "conservatives'" favorite serial adulterer swings and misses.

At about 1:45 PM Eastern, ol' buy her off and get a new one was flummoxed by a phone call from a conservative opposed to the war in Iraq. The caller said he had stopped supporting the war because we had stopped fighting to win and the situation was beginning to resemble you-know-where.

What did their hero do? He changed the subject on the guy twice, once again showing the world he is nothing more than a shill for the Repansycans.

From The Only In America Department:

Thanks to Steve Czaban of Fox Sports Radio for the heads up on these three:

Tiger kills teen during photo shoot at animal sanctuary

MOUND VALLEY, Kan. (AP) — A Siberian tiger attacked and killed a teenage girl who was posing for photos at a family-run animal sanctuary Thursday in southeast Kansas, authorities said.

The Labette County Sheriff's office identified the victim as Haley R. Hilderbrand, 17, of Altamont. A statement from the office said Hilderbrand was at the Lost Creek Animal Sanctuary posing for photos with the 7-year-old tiger, which was being restrained by its handler, when the animal turned and attacked her.

Officers and handlers killed the animal. Emergency personnel were not able to revive Hilderbrand.

Doug Billingsly and his family opened the 80-acre sanctuary in 1994. According to the sanctuary's Web site, its animals include lions, leopards, tigers and bears. The site says the sanctuary has an affiliated Animal Entertainment Productions, which trains animals for stage performances, movies, television shows and magic shows.

Billingsly didn't immediately return a phone call for comment.

Ex-Power Ranger accused of murdering wealthy couple

A former child actor and his wife have been ordered to stand trial for the murder of a wealthy California couple who, prosecutors say, were tied to the anchor of their yacht and thrown overboard, never to be seen again.

Yesterday Skylar Deleon, 26, who once starred in the Power Rangers TV series, and his wife, Jennifer Henderson Deleon, 24, were ordered to stand trial for the murders, which baffled police for months as they searched for the missing couple. Also implicated were a gang member and a prison guard who are accused of helping to carry out a conspiracy to steal the 17-metre luxury yacht.

2 fired over 'Bitch Dog' bill

CHICAGO -- Two Comcast customer service employees were fired for changing an Elgin woman's name to "Bitch Dog" on her August bill after she repeatedly complained about poor service, company officials announced Wednesday.

"We are appalled by this treatment of our customer and want to extend our sincerest apologies" to LaChania Govan, the company said in a statement. "This is not the way Comcast does business. We have identified those responsible for altering Ms. Govan's bill, and they have been dismissed as a result of this incident."

Govan noted that the apology and firings came only after her story was published in the Tribune and gained widespread media attention, but she also said she appreciated the company's actions.

Clueless in Gaza.

The bottom line (so far):

Israel should have annexed Gaza and the West Bank after the
Six Days War and the Golan Heights after the Yom Kippur War. That's what you do when you defeat neighbors who wage war upon you. Sure, the UN pansies would have screamed for a while and then whined for a little while longer, but time and the memory of the IDF's power and effectiveness would have healed that wound.

The billions we have poured into Israel, Egypt, and the rest of the Mideast cesspool should have bought peace. Unfortunately, the Israelis' reputation for toughness was exaggerated.

And now they are beginning to pay the price.

Clinton got a hummer and people died.

The bottom line (so far):

More than one year before terrorists killed more than 3,000 Americans on September 11, 2001, a military intelligence unit known as Able Danger identified Atta and three others as al-Qaida linked (at the least). Then, the Clintons' administration and their perverse, power-mad Weltansicht got involved:

Shaffer said Able Danger identified Atta and three other Sept. 11 hijackers in 2000, but that military lawyers stopped the unit from sharing the information with the FBI out of concerns about the legality of gathering and sharing information on people in the U.S.

"The lawyers' view was to leave them alone, they had the same basic rights as a U.S. citizen, a U.S. person and therefore the data was kind of left alone," Shaffer said.

Shaffer said he and a Navy officer disagreed with that and tried to set up meetings with the FBI, but each time the idea was rejected by lawyers from the Special Operations command.

"There was a feeling ... if we give this information to the FBI and something goes wrong, we're going to get blamed for whatever goes wrong," Shaffer said.

The statement by Kean and Hamilton said only Atta was mentioned to them as being identified by Able Danger. They were told by a Navy officer about Atta 10 days before the commission released its report in July 2004, but the officer did not have documentation to back it up, the statement said.

The statement also said the Navy officer's dates related to the pre-Sept. 11 whereabouts of Atta did not fit with what they knew.

Shaffer said it did not surprise him the dates would be different.

Able Danger "wasn't about dates and locations. It was about associations and linkages. That's what the focus was," Shaffer said.

Shaffer said Able Danger identified the terrorists using data mining techniques. His relationship to Able Danger was first reported Tuesday night by The New York Times and Fox News Channel.

Shaffer's lawyer, Mark Zaid, said Wednesday that Shaffer does not have documentation related to Able Danger because his security clearance was suspended in March 2004 because of "petty and frivolous" reasons. They include a dispute over mileage reimbursement and a charges for personal calls on a work cell phone, Zaid said.

Shaffer, an Army reservist, has been on paid administrative leave for the past 16 months, Zaid said. He was an active Army major during his involvement with Able Danger, Zaid said.

Rep. Curt Weldon (news, bio, voting record), R-Pa., vice chairman of the House Armed Services and Homeland Security committees, has said the Sept. 11 commission did not adequately investigate the claim that four of the hijackers had been identified more than a year before the attacks.
(Thanks to YahooNews! for the heads up.)

Strength through science (and Get Fuzzy).

Scattisi prego per ingrandire.

The coriolis effect is
here. To witness this scientific fact, watch your bathwater drain out of the tub.

Frank and Ernest get political.

Cliquez pour agrandir, s'il vous plait.

Saint of the Day and daily Mass readings.

Today is the Feast of St. John Eudes, a priest who ministered to those politely known as "fallen women" and who wrote the Mass for the Sacred Heart in 1668. Pray for us, all you angels and saints.

Today's reading is
Ruth 1:1, 3-6, 14-16, 22.
Today's Gospel reading is
Matthew 22:34-40.

Everyday links:

The Blessed Virgin Mary
The Rosary
Our Mother of Perpetual Help
Prayers from EWTN
National Coalition of Clergy and Laity (dedicated to action for a genuine Catholic Restoration)
The Catholic Calendar Page for Today


Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that any one who fled to thy protection, implored thy help or sought thy intercession,was left unaided.Inspired with this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins my Mother; to thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful; O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy clemency hear and answer me. Amen.

St. Joseph, her most chaste spouse, pray for us.

Prayer to Saint Anthony, Martyr of Desire

Dear St. Anthony, you became a Franciscan with the hope of shedding your blood for Christ. In God's plan for you, your thirst for martyrdom was never to be satisfied. St. Anthony, Martyr of Desire, pray that I may become less afraid to stand up and be counted as a follower of the Lord Jesus. Intercede also for my other intentions. (Name them.)


St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou O Prince of the heavenly hosts, by the divine power, thrust into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Memo to Kel Kel:

You don't have to worry about your link's placement on my list because:

Professor Rummel, who was bumped a spot, is a gentleman and a scholar as well as a fierce defender of freedom.

2) Everyone knows my readers read every word of every page. There's no such thing as a bad spot in my corner of Bloggerdom.

Whither Cindy Sheehan?

Forget her increasingly vicious and delusional leftist sputum.

Forget her rabid

I fear this poor, ignorant, damaged woman is going to kill herself on camera, just to teach us all a lesson.

May God have mercy on her.

Praying school board likened to terrorists.

No, no, no! You must compare the Christians to Nazis! Is nobody paying attention to the modern rules of discourse but me?

A local ACLU director equated al-Qaida terrrorists with members of a Louisiana school board seeking to open their meetings with prayer.

Joe Cook of the ACLU of Louisiana spoke on camera with WAFB-TV, Baton Rouge, La., while staff and teachers of the Tangipahoa Parish district in New Orleans were at a seminar being informed of their free-speech rights by a member of the Alliance Defense Fund.

Referring to the school board, Cook said, "They believe that they answer to a higher power, in my opinion. Which is the kind of thinking that you had with the people who flew the airplanes into the buildings in this country, and the people who did the kind of things in London."

Mike Johnson, senior counsel and southeastern regional coordinator for the Alliance Defense Fund, said Cook has become increasingly outlandish in his statements.

"It shows the ACLU has become more and more extreme and marginalized," said Johnson. "So, to that extent, I like it when he talks, because he simply reveals who they are."

Johnson said the ACLU tries to "come across as champions of liberty, but the truth of the matter is they are extremists."

"It's clear in a number of recent cases that the ACLU of Louisiana wants to impose a radical form of secularism that the Constitution doesn't require, and frankly, that people of this state are not willing to accept," Johnson said.

The local ACLU has filed three lawsuits in the past 10 years on behalf of "offended parents" with children in the Tangipahoa Parish district.

The board is appealing a federal judge's ruling that prayers at its regular meetings violate the Establishment Clause of the United States Constitution, which says, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion."

Does anybody even bother to read the Constitution of the United States of America anymore?

Huh? What?


The "establishment clause means only this: Congress may not make us all Methodists!

It has nothing to do with the states! If the elected representatives of the citizens of Iowa want to make unitarianism or rastafarianism the official religion of Iowa, THEY CAN!

Merciful God in heaven, read a book or two, you clowns!

I hope the Bloggerville police don't lock me up for this one.

Drat! Spam comments!

Befouling my pretty little subdivision of Bloggerville,

lennytheo3192 said...
St0ck For Your Review - FCPG

Plus a whole lotta other crap. Thank goodness for the delete button.

P.S. Yo, Eddie! You ever heard of FCPG?

Poor Fyodor is soooooooo misunderstood. Luckily I am aware of the limitations of words.

Kel Kel, this is just for you. Not only do boys have cooties, they also have bad intentions. However, this shirt is just a joke.

Forget rocks. You're old enough to buy a gun and learn how to protect yourself with it.

Now that I have my trademark witty portion of the post out of the way, on to the serious stuff.

In response to
my response to a comment from an actual reader (O, heady stuff, Fearless Reader!) a young Catholic gentlelady (How often does one get to type that?) with the redundant name of Kel Kel said...

I have to agree with you and Eddie on the fact that you can't really claim to be a Catholic just because you were born into it. However, I am somewhat uneased by your "cultural" comment. As a Catholic, I find that the Catholic "culture" is one of the biggest things that seperates us from the P's. Aside from the moral views, the culture is an astounding trait. Almost as imporant as the Jews. I think you were most likely refering to being born into it, though.

I certainly agree with you that if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it probably is a duck... and it is sinful for it to claim to be a swan.

I apologize for being an idiot who can't get his thoughts onto pixels so people can understand just what I'm thinking. It's a curse. But I think I'm getting better. Let me try to 'splain it to you, Lucy.

My use of "Cultural Catholic" was, of course, an attempt at cleverness on my part. (You'd think I'd know better by now.) I was playing off of the phrase "Cultural Jew" , which seems to mean a Jew who is Jewish in everything except religion.

I know. Practically speaking, that leaves klezmer music and great, but not always kosher, delis. (A joke! I kid because I care. If you're offended, go
here and watch Gush Katif be destroyed. Ain't it funny how some Christians seem to care more about Israel than...)

Obviously, there are a lot of
CINOs out there, (Catholic In Name Only) but the most important ones are the public figures who publicly profess The Faith. Can you believe Ted Kennedy is still the most famous American Catholic recognized as such? Pity. It used to be Bishop Sheen.

My guess is leftist Catholics use the word as cover. They can claim to be members of a church and also get to claim at least partial credit for the good works of The Church. (While always lamenting the all too powerful reactionary forces running it who wage war against contraception, divorce, fornication, adultery, homosexuality, abortion...oh, you know, all those gifts that progress has brought us.)

I never, never, ever, meant to imply there was anything wrong with true Catholic culture. Heck, The Church was Western culture for about 1,700 years. And it is still all that is good and hopeful and beautiful in the West.

I would also like to take this opportunity to beg forgiveness from any mallard-Americans who may have been offended by the post in question.

One more thing, Kel Kel. I refuse to believe anyone is born into the Catholic faith. Even if one is baptized as an infant, sooner or later there comes a moment when one must choose what one believes.

Keep The Faith, baby.

Saint of the Day and daily Mass readings.

Today is the Feast of St. Jane Frances de Chantal, a remarkable woman of faith whose life should be an example of piety and perseverance to us all. Pray for us, all you angels and saints.

Today's reading is Proverbs 31:10-13, 19-20, 30-31.
Today's Gospel reading is Mark 3:31-35.

Everyday links:

The Blessed Virgin Mary
The Rosary
Our Mother of Perpetual Help
Prayers from EWTN
National Coalition of Clergy and Laity (dedicated to action for a genuine Catholic Restoration)
The Catholic Calendar Page for Today


Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that any one who fled to thy protection, implored thy help or sought thy intercession,was left unaided.Inspired with this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins my Mother; to thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful;O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy clemency hear and answer me. Amen.

St. Joseph, her most chaste spouse, pray for us.

Prayer to Saint Anthony, Martyr of Desire

Dear St. Anthony, you became a Franciscan with the hope of shedding your blood for Christ. In God's plan for you, your thirst for martyrdom was never to be satisfied. St. Anthony, Martyr of Desire, pray that I may become less afraid to stand up and be counted as a follower of the Lord Jesus. Intercede also for my other intentions. (Name them.)


St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou O Prince of the heavenly hosts, by the divine power, thrust into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

I get mail...

Edward is back for more. This time he noticed the overwrought headline on my post about a Les Kinsolving column that disturbs me more each time I read it.

Eddie said...
I came back to your site. I didn't read this post before. How true about Catholics, though I am confident that Roberts is the real McCoy. The president wouldn't have appointed him if he wasn't.

I am always amazed by how some Catholics seem to think that their faith is inherited from their parents. You can't be Catholic if you don't practice the faith. Our Pope tells us this includes denoucning baby murder (aka abortion) and not following secular points of views. Showing up for Church because it makes for good photo shoots for your political campaign for office is not enough in itself.

Thanks, Edward.

This seems to be the day for serious, thoughtful comments. I hope I am up to the task of responding appropriately.

I am not as confident as Eddie is when it comes to the current president. He does seem to be more of a man than his father was. (Strange, considering Bush the Elder was a genuine war hero.) If his father had done his job properly, Iraq would have had a 12 year head start on this freedom thing.

As for Judge Roberts, I hope and pray he turns out to be a Justice like Scalia or Thomas. I understand the desire to say nothing controversial in the hope of slipping by the forces of ignorance in the Senate, but this does not say much for Judge Roberts guts, fortitude, moxie, et cetera.

As for public Catholicism, I think you are correct. There is no such thing as a "cultural Catholic" (and I suspect the "cultural Jew" is merely a figment of the imagination of Jews who no longer believe in anything) and people like Mario Cuomo who are "personally opposed" to child murder but do everything possible in their public lives to promote it are nothing more (or less) than mortal sinners.

I would not dare to judge the condition of Cuomo's soul (or that of Durbin, Kennedy, Leahy, Scalia, Thomas, et al) but if it walks like a duck in public, quacks like a duck on TV, and votes like a duck on the record, chances are excellent that duck needs to go to confession and then change how he walks, talks, and votes.

If he truly believes disobeying the Will of God will land his fat backside in Hell one day, that is.

And there you have it. We're back to the original question: How does one recognize a believer? Our protestant friends seem to believe (I can never be sure with them.There are too many different kinds.) all you have to do is say you believe and, voila, there you go, straight to heaven.

But we have a responsibility to act on our faith in the world (Us too! Us too! yell the P's as an afterthought.) and if we see someone claiming to be Catholic behaving publicly in a manner unbecoming (to say the least) a Catholic, what conclusion must we draw?

Swathmore Prof Says Intelligent Design Advocates Are Nazis*; Declares Evolution "Fact" After Assuming His Rightful Place As God...

...or, Get your kids out of Swathmore!

Writing for Human Events Online , Christopher Flickinger brings us the bittersweet tale of the feline Professor Colin Purrington, who fits one definition of a madman: He thinks he gets to define what is real.

Did you hear the news? Evolution is no longer a theory. It’s a fact! I know, I can’t believe it either. Wait, you haven’t heard about this breakthrough discovery? Well, you might want to check with Professor Colin Purrington, an evolutionary biologist who teaches at Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania. Professor Purrington says, “Evolution is a ‘theory’ like gravity is a ‘theory.’”

You'd think this guy was a biologist pretending to understand physics or something. Oops, sorry Colin.

I wouldn't bet my own money on it, but I think he thinks he's talking about
Newton's Universal Law of Gravitation, which is precisely a theory. Gravity itself is a fact. Newton's idea of how it works is a theory. (I know this is kind of basic, kiddies. But little Colin is having some trouble keeping up.)

The same applies to the fact of the varied and complex life with which Earth abounds. Darwin (a real scientist, unlike you, Colin) proposed a theory of natural selection to explain the fact. You see, Colin, a theory can only be proved to be more or less accurate in its ability to explain the facts of the world around us.

Also, the more complex a theory is (or the more complex the fact it tries to explain turns out to be) the less likely it is to be able to perfectly explain the observed facts. Two excellent examples of this are Newton's Universal Law of Gravitation and Darwin's theory of Natural Selection.

Hey, how about that, kiddies? Talk about irony, huh?

Think about it this way, Colin. As some old Greek dude once told me, the more you learn, the more you realize how little you know.Or something like that.

The Professor’s statement is in regards to an ongoing educational debate in Kansas: should the theory of intelligent design be taught in schools alongside evolution? Well, according to a press release from Swarthmore College, Prof. Purrington believes there is no place for the theory of creationism in our schools.

“They say ‘teach the controversy.’ But to do that is akin to debating with Holocaust deniers. It just gives credence to something that is made up” says Professor Purrington. He adds, “The low-budget remake of the Scopes trial that is currently taking place in Kansas will make educated Kansans want to flee the state so that their children will not be subjected to quack scientific ideas such as intelligent design.”

*O, yee of little faith! You doubted me? What is a shoah denier? A Nazi, that's what.

On Prof. Purrington’s website “Evolution Outreach Projects,” he says, “To effectively educate children about life, therefore, science standards must be readjusted so that exposure to evolution is commenced in kindergarten, when it might better counteract the creation mythologies that kids are getting at home.” Can you imagine the impact evolution would have on kindergarteners? They’d never eat animal crackers again!

Professor Purrington’s website also contains downloadable Darwin stickers, quotes from the father of evolution and gift ideas for science teachers like body armor for protection against “backwards school boards” and cell phone stun guns to zap creationists.

Heehee. This guy is funny.

But not in the manner he intends.

Human Events contacted Swarthmore College and requested an interview with Professor Purrington; he declined without giving a reason. When Human Events informed the college spokesperson that the professor’s unwillingness to go on the record would not stop us from running a story, we received the following e-mail:

“In response to your last message, Prof. Purrington asked that I convey to you that he is quite busy preparing for classes at the moment. He didn't mention this yesterday, but it does not surprise me. Professors in the sciences especially are often busy over the summer with research and other demands. He also asked me to mention that he looks forward to your article, even if it is critical.”

It should be noted; Human Events’ request for an interview was made more than a month before Swarthmore College was scheduled to begin its fall semester.

So, unfortunately, there are only two ways to hear Professor Purrington explain the mysteries of the universe: enroll in his class or wait for his schedule to free-up. Although, given the professor’s anti-religious remarks, I wouldn’t expect there to be an opening in his calendar anytime soon. He probably doesn’t rest on Sundays, and he has centuries of political and religious thought to refute.

I just hope a brave, young conservative student will enroll in the professor’s class, raise his/her hand and ask the following questions:

· In the Declaration of Independence, our founders speak of “unalienable rights” by which we are endowed with by our Creator. If there is no Creator, then where do our rights come from? A piece of paper?

· Darwin put forth the idea (I mean, fact) of “survival of the fittest.” So, if “might makes right,” would those who believe in God be justified in suppressing and persecuting those who believe in Darwin?

I doubt you'd be able to scare the professor with Social Darwinism. The man sounds like he battles Nazis every day.

· How did Biblical figures know the Earth was round and that ocean currents, sub-atomic particles, a jet stream and an infinite number of stars existed if they lived thousands of years before scientists would make those discoveries?

· If evolution rests on the idea of natural selection and adaptation, and if everything that exists today only exists because it is the “fittest” or it “adapted” in order to survive, should humans really be going out of their way to save the whales or prevent the extinction of some endangered species? Aren’t we doing evolution a disservice by nurturing these inadequate creatures?

Exactly! Kill them and eat them!

Evolution certainly has a lot of explaining to do.

Bottom line – evolution is not fact. It’s theory! And, contrary to Prof. Purrington’s remarks, the theory of intelligent design deserves just as much attention as evolution in the classroom.

What good is an education if opposing sides of an unresolved debate aren’t considered? If Prof. Purrington and his students don’t at least consider the validity of creationism, they run the risk of intellectual deficiency and thus (according to Darwin’s theory) possible extinction.


Will they ignore scientific studies that prove the power of prayer? Will they visit doctors other than the 76% who believe in God according to Reuters? Will they protest the efforts of environmentalists who try to save stubborn trees and animals that refuse to adapt for survival?

Students deserve to hear both sides of the debate. If not, how else are aspiring evolutionists going to realize they’re wrong?

Amen to that, Brother.

There is hope for us yet, guys.

Playgirl's hunks? The hairy, chubby & poor!

Forget waxed chests and rock-hard abs. A new survey finds ladies like their men scruffy, a wee bit chubby - and definitely not a metrosexual.

Playgirl asked 2,000 of its readers what they find sexy in a man and the answers were surprising: 42% said they thought love handles were kind of sexy and 47% approved of chest hair.

The mag, which often features toned, hairless males in its beefcake photo spreads, is now searching for a man who meets readers' standards.

Average Joes everywhere can send photos to models@playgirlmag.com to compete for a shot at a pictorial in a future issue.

Rich playboys need not apply - only 4% of women said the size of a man's wallet mattered. Metrosexuals are also out: 73% want a guy who is "rough around the edges."

"This survey shows that the guy who's most attractive to our readers is not your average Hollywood hunk," said Playgirl editrix Jill Sieracki. "It's the average Joe who came up on top. Women are practical about their choices, and they're smart."

New York matchmaker Janis Spindel, a self-described specialist at setting up "highly successful, well-educated, attractive professionals," confirmed the survey's findings. "It's scary, but women don't care [about looks]," she said. "Men are very superficial and very shallow."

But Spindel disputed the claim that women don't care about finding a rich man: "Women want a man who makes more money than they do," she said. "They want to be able to live a comfortable lifestyle."

Oh well. It was fun while it lasted.

The Archdiocese of New Orleans gets it.

Violators of The Natural Law beware. You may not do evil in order to do "good".

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans has evicted the Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC) from a Catholic AIDS hospice because of a complaint that the church believes in same-sex marriage.

"I was shocked, and after that, I was hurt and disappointed. It is a message to me of exclusion rather than inclusion of all people," Rev. Dexter Brecht of MCC told Cybercast News Service.

But Steve Crampton, chief counsel for the American Family Association Center for Law and Policy, defended the archdiocese, saying that since the hospice Lazarus House is their private property, the "church was acting within its legal rights to terminate the arrangement.

"They were concerned the impression would be conveyed that they somehow condone the teachings of the Metropolitan Community Church on the issues of same-sex marriage by allowing them to remain in the space," said Crampton.

MCC is expected to leave the hospice by Nov. 1, but Brecht said they have no problems with the hospice itself.

"We don't have any problem with the good services provided by the Lazarus House itself," said Brecht. "The administration of Lazarus House was forced into making this decision, unfortunately."

Rev. Laurie Reed of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays New Orleans, who is also the minister of pastoral counseling for MCC, echoed Brecht's thoughts, saying she was "stunned" after working well with the people at Lazarus House, the archdiocese and Sister Anthony Barczykowski of Catholic Charities, who Reed said filed the complaint.

"If it is because they are gay, I think they knew that when we signed up," said Reed, who questioned what prompted the filing of the complaint.

"I'm just wondering if [Barczykowski] is getting some pressure from somewhere else or if the Catholic Church is under fire by so many different problems that they've had or if the world has just become so much more fundamentalist. Our feelings are really hurt by this. It's a real slap in the face," Reed told Cybercast News Service.

Reed added: "We are still really in shock about the whole thing. She was skeptical whether we were Christian or not, and that is kind of hard to swallow from anyone, but especially from her. They don't value our ministry and what we do for the community." Crampton was "struck" by MCC's "pretense of being a Christian denomination." He added: "I would suggest that merely saying it does not make it so, and that in fact, it is nothing of the sort."

Reed said that while 11 churches in the area have offered to house the MCC, "It has spurred us to go ahead and get our own place so we are not as vulnerable to the powers that be. We put ourselves out there as an open church. A lot of churches are very closed; you have to be just this one way to come here."

The Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans was unavailable for comment. (Thanks to CNSNews for the heads up.)

Cindy hates me! Cindy hates me!

Our modern day Rosa Parks (Watch out, Cindy. Rosa has lawyers.) shakes her tiny, impotent fists of fury at the evildoers who refuse to bow to her will.

On a day when liberal activists plan to hold coast-to-coast candlelight vigils for Cindy Sheehan, the anti-war activist is moving closer to President Bush's ranch -- and complaining about "right-wingers."

In her latest posting on Michael Moore's website, Sheehan complains, "The right wingers are really having a field day with me. It hurts me really badly, but I am willing to put up with the crap, if it ends the war a minute sooner than it would have."

Sheehan raises "specific concerns," including news of her impending divorce, which was in the works before she came to Crawford, she says.

She also rebuts "the lie" about her saying that her son "died for Israel." "I never said that, I never wrote that," Sheehan says.

"The right wingers are emailing me and spewing filth about me on the radio and on the television saying that I am dishonoring my son's memory," Crawford wrote in her latest Internet post. (Thanks to CNSNews for the heads up.)

To establish my bona fides as a crazed right wing filth spewer, I proudly point to this and this.

The Clinton legacy is alive and well.

From CNSNews, Sherrie Gossett reports on another forgotten front of another forgotten war.

Terrorists who previously targeted the U.S. are now in Bosnia, where they have access to a "one-stop shop" of jihad training camps, weapons and illegal Islamic 'charities' -- all at the doorstep of Europe, terrorism experts said.

"[Convicted terrorist] Karim Said Atmani recently returned to Bosnia after being released early from French prison for 'good behavior,'" terrorism expert and author Evan Kohlmann said.

Atmani, a Moroccan, was linked to the "millennium bomb plot" and convicted by a French court of colluding with Osama bin Laden. He has been linked to the Armed Islamic Group (GIA), an organization responsible for airplane hijackings and subway bombings in France.

"This is very disturbing," said Kohlmann. "Atmani promised he would wage jihad until the end. That doesn't mean until a plea deal, or early release; it means until death or victory."

Give him the death he so fanatically desires.

Also finding haven in Bosnia is Abu el Maali, who like Atmani, was a foreign national who fought in the Bosnia war. El Maali was later accused by French authorities of attempting to smuggle explosives in 1998 to an Egyptian terrorist group plotting to destroy U.S. military installations in Germany. He was also accused of leading terrorist cells in Bosnia, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

"This activity is very significant," said Kohlmann. "Senior members of the former Muslim Brigade and their top commanders are still there, and they're still active."

The Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation (AHF), a charity that was later found by the U.S. Treasury to be underwriting terrorist operations including al Qaeda, shut its offices in Bosnia after the U.S. announcement but reopened under the name "Vazir." The new organization was registered as an "association for sport, culture and education."

Christopher Brown, research associate with the Transitions to Democracy Project at the Hudson Institute, echoed the report. "A lot of these camps are very mobile," he said. "Bosnia has a lot of rugged territory where such camps can be set up temporarily."

The idea that there are no jihadist camps in Bosnia and radical Islam has not gained any foothold there, as some analysts suggest, is "ridiculous," according to Brown. He points to the raising of two Waffen-SS divisions under the encouragement of the mufti of Jerusalem during World War II, up to the spread of Wahhabism by the Saudis beginning in the 1960s and 1970s."

Al Qaeda cells were set up in Bosnia in the early 1990s by Ayman al Zawahiri, Osama bin Laden's right-hand man, and bin Laden was said to visit the area twice in the mid-1990s," Brown added. "Iran was very involved in supporting the Islamist separatist movement in Bosnia, and Hezbollah was doing training there in the 1990s."

Golly, didn't we have assets in that area back then? I'll have to check my back issues of the NYT.

Animal Flesh Recipe of the Day.

In order to get the taste of that last post out of your mouth (You thought I could stop myself from typing that? Ha!) I am proud to bring you another reason to kill a cute, cuddly, intelligent, strong, tasty, wily, vicious, and smelly beast.

For this one kiddies, you actually can go out there and kill it yourself. (At least in the red states, that is. You better check first. You might be arrested as a member of the
Posse Comitatus if you walk around the woods with a gun.)

Marinated Venison Loin Steaks with Onions and Sweet Peppers
(Shoot Bambi! Butcher Bambi! Eat Bambi!)

Onions and peppers are a classic accompaniment to grilled steaks, their pungency and sweetness acting as a perfect foil for the richness of the meat. Trouble is, the vegetables often are sauteed in copious amounts of butter or oil. When you pair them with steak, or even relatively lean venison, any hopes of a healthy meal go out the window. I address this by cooking the roasted peppers and onions lightly in a small amount of oil in a saute pan set directly on the grill. Venison loin steak is a treat worth having, particularly if you serve it with these simply prepared onions and peppers. If you prefer, serve beef tenderloin steaks instead.

For the marinade:
1/2 cup molasses
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup Roasted Garlic Cloves, recipe follows
1 branch fresh rosemary
1/2 small Thai chile, thinly sliced or 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper

For the steaks:
6 (1-pound) venison loin steaks, bone in
6 bell peppers, red and yellow
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1 large Vidalia or other sweet onion, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices

In a small, heavy saucepan, combine all the marinade ingredients and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat. Set aside and let cool to room temperature.

Lay each steak flat on the counter and tie each one horizontally so that the meat forms a tight, round package. You will need 6 pieces of kitchen twine, each measuring about 18 inches long.

Spread half the marinade over the bottom of a nonreactive casserole or deep baking pan just large enough to hold all 6 steaks snugly but without crowding. Arrange the steaks in the pan and coat with the remaining marinade. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or up to 5 hours.
Remove the steaks from the marinade and place them on a double thickness of paper towels to dry.

Light a fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill to medium.


Set the peppers over the hottest part of the grill and cook until they begin to char. Turn with tongs and continue grilling until the peppers are charred on all sides. Stand by the grill during this time – the peppers cook quickly. Using tongs to turn them prevents them from splitting open. Transfer immediately to a container just large enough to hold them. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let the peppers cool to the touch. Rub the charred skin off the peppers. Remove the seeds and ribs from the peppers. Cut the peppers into strips.

About 15 minutes before grilling, remove the steaks from the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature. Season the steaks with salt and pepper and brush with half the oil. Grill for 7 minutes on 1 side. Turn and grill for 7 minutes longer on the other side. Turn 1 more time and grill for about 2 minutes longer for rare steak. Grill for 1 to 2 minutes longer for medium-rare. Take care when turning the steaks to that the grill marks on the meat are perpendicular to the grate.

Rare! Rare! Rare!

Transfer the steaks to a warmer platter and remove the twine.

Place a medium saute pan or skillet on the hottest part of the grill. Put the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil and the sliced onions in the pan and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes, or until the onions are lightly browned. Add the pepper strips and cook for about 2 minutes, or until heated through.
Serve the steaks on warmed large plates with the grill marks showing. Carefully spoon the pepper and onions over half of each steak so that the grill marks are clearly visible.

Roasted Garlic Cloves:
Unpeeled garlic cloves, as needed

Put the cloves in a dry cast iron skillet and cook over low heat for 20 to 30 minutes, or until softened. Turn frequently so that the cloves soften but do not brown. Slide the cloves from the skillet onto a plate to cool to the touch. Squeeze the softened garlic pulp from the individual cloves.

Recipe courtesy of Michel Nischan; Taste Pure and Simple: Irresistible Recipes for Good Food and Good Health (Chronicle Books 2003) and Food Network.

Pity poor Mrs. Ciccone-Penn-Ritchie (Forgive me if I missed a couple of her "husbands".)

These days this vapid cow can only get noticed when some animal trys to finish the job 47 years of ignorance and perversion have only begun.

Madonna's 47th birthday celebration was marred Tuesday when she suffered several broken bones in a horse riding accident at her country home outside London, her publicist told The Associated Press.

The superstar was treated and released from a hospital after sustaining three cracked ribs, a broken collarbone and a broken hand, according to Liz Rosenberg, her spokeswoman based in New York.

Madonna's husband, director Guy Ritchie, took her to the hospital, Rosenberg said.

The accident occurred Tuesday at Ashcombe house, the couple's 1,354-acre estate about 100 miles southwest of London.

Madonna and an assistant were riding when Madonna, on a horse she wasn't accustomed to riding, took a tumble. Her children, Rocco and Lourdes, were at the home but weren't with her at the time, Rosenberg said.

La Ciccone-Penn-Ritchie is famous for "re-inventing" her public image and keeping her increasingly hideous mug in front of the cameras. It is obviously time for her to try the trick again.

If I may be so bold, I would like to suggest a new direction for her career.


I know. But hear me out.

She has always been cutting edge. Ahead of the curve, even. And it's not like she'd be molesting animals or kids. (Some people really get upset over that stuff.)

All she has to do is appear to eat some. On stage. In front of thousands.

Imagine what Katie Couric would do to get the interview after that!

It wouldn't even have to be real. She has plenty (well...) of Hollyweird contacts. I am sure some special effects wiz could create a realistic substitute made out of lemon grass or something that would also be pleasant tasting and even nutritious.

Imagine the possibilities inherent in the phrase The Coprophilia World Tour.

Mustang 23 gets it.

From his blog, Assumption of Command, somewhere deep in the heart of ol' Babylon, Dave delivers a serious beat down to the chuckleheads at the NCAA. (My idiotic take on this kerfuffle in a teacup is here.)

Keep Tribal Names; Ban "Golden Gophers" Instead

The story so far:
On August 5, the NCAA decreed that the use of certain American Indian team names and mascots would be banned during post-season tournaments. At least 18 schools had names and/or mascots that were deemed "hostile" and "abusive", including, most famously, the Seminoles of Florida State and the University of Illinois Illini.

Not content to be dictated to by the NCAA, the universities in question have begun to push back. Among the more notable responses is the open letter from Charles E. Kupchella, president of the University of North Dakota (home of the Fighting Sioux): An Open Letter to the NCAA

Is it the use of the names of tribes that you find hostile and abusive?Not long ago I took a trip to make a proposal to establish an epidemiological program to support American Indian health throughout the Upper Great Plains. On this trip I left a state called North Dakota. (Dakota is one of the names the indigenous people of this region actually call themselves.) I flew over South Dakota, crossing the Sioux River several times, and finally landed in Sioux City, Iowa, just south of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The airplane in which I traveled that day was called a Cheyenne."

Read the whole thing.

Major K.'s new job.

August 13, 2005

The New Job.

As I mentioned earlier, I am now on a MiTT (Military Transition Team) training the Iraqi 6th Infantry Division. It is a whole new set of challenges. Dealing with the tribal/familial entanglements, the cultural differences and the language barrier are just a few. The Iraqi supply and logistics chain is even worse than ours. We are trying to stand up a Division Headquarters that will eventually control five Brigades in Baghdad. Right now, only two of the five Brigades are operational. The Division Headquarters is manned by less than half of the people that they should have. The biggest problem right now is that we have the Senior Officers but not the complement of Soldiers, NCO's and Junior Officers that we should have. It is a classic "Too many chiefs and not enough Indians scenario. (I hope I don't get in trouble with the ACLU or the NCAA for using that analogy...)

Good luck to you, sir, your men, and the brave Iraqis you are training. May God bless and protect you all.

I get mail...

Responding to yesterday's post on Arthur Chrenkoff's latest Good News From Iraq,

MPH said...
from kirazalan.net

If this National Assembly does not have the mindset required to produce a meaningful Iraqi constitution, then it is best to dissolve and re-elect the assembly than settle for a prop. It is more important to get it right, than to get it “right now.”

As Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari noted, “We should not be hasty regarding the issues and the constitution should not be born crippled.” The constitution must be meaningful – a living, breathing document that can be a foundation for the long road towards a real democracy in a united Iraq.

Thanks for your comments.

Your point is well taken.

On the other hand, there is something to be said for holding the politicians' to the deadline. Even if members of the Iraqi assembly are not professional pols yet, they soon will be. (Sadly, that is the nature of man when infected with power.)

They will talk the thing to death while the country disintegrates around them. The Iraqi people need the rule of law as soon as possible. For the time being, this law must be enforced by the military. Only the practice of freedom by all Iraqis will equip them to live in a country where no man is above the law.

It is best for them (and us) if they start as soon as possible.

Links to MPH's blogs, Disaffiliates - Think Twice and Michael Hussey Blog will be added to my list, although he does have a link to some of that Ayn Rand nonsense that always gives me the heebie-jeebies.

Saint of the Day and daily Mass readings.

Today is the Feast of St. Myron, Bishop of Crete. Today is also the Feast of St. Hyacinth, a Dominican missionary known as the Apostle of Poland. Pray for us, all you angels and saints.

Today's reading is Judges 9:6-15.
Today's Gospel reading is
Matthew 20:1-16.

Everyday links:

The Blessed Virgin Mary
The Rosary
Our Mother of Perpetual Help
Prayers from EWTN
National Coalition of Clergy and Laity (dedicated to action for a genuine Catholic Restoration)
The Catholic Calendar Page for Today


Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that any one who fled to thy protection, implored thy help or sought thy intercession,was left unaided.Inspired with this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins my Mother; to thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful;O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy clemency hear and answer me. Amen.

St. Joseph, her most chaste spouse, pray for us.

Prayer to Saint Anthony, Martyr of Desire

Dear St. Anthony, you became a Franciscan with the hope of shedding your blood for Christ. In God's plan for you, your thirst for martyrdom was never to be satisfied. St. Anthony, Martyr of Desire, pray that I may become less afraid to stand up and be counted as a follower of the Lord Jesus. Intercede also for my other intentions. (Name them.)


St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou O Prince of the heavenly hosts, by the divine power, thrust into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

I get mail...

...from a self-professed Catholic. (Finally!)

Eddie said...
Nice blog, I actually found it by a post from a disagreeing commentator on my blog. I am Catholic as well.

Congratulations, sir. As the first visitor to my little corner of Bloggerville to actually identify himself as a Catholic, you win free links here to each of your three blogs!

And my sincere thanks for the kind words.

Keep The Faith, baby.

In vitro, no one can hear you scream...

...or, Dumbass, backpedaling, fraidy-cat, loser "conservatives" REFUSE to get it.

Dennis Prager on James Dobson on nazis and murder from WND. I hoped Dobson had called them Nazis directly. I should have known better.

Watch out, kiddies. You might get run over as the the brave men of principle throw it in reverse.

In discussing the Christian-Jewish (Actually, it is the Catholic-Jewish divide, fool. Get your hands off our divide! The Jews and us are working things out just fine. - F.G.) divide over the Mel Gibson film "The Passion of the Christ," I explained that Jews and Christians were watching two distinct films. Christians were watching Christ suffer for their sins, and Jews were watching Jews kill Christ. Jews were wrong to assume Christians would leave the theater with hostility toward Jews, and Christians needed to appreciate how many Jews had been murdered because of the charge of "Christ-killer."

We now have another example of unfounded Jewish (and liberal) fear of conservative Christians – and another example where Christians need to try to understand, not just react defensively toward, these fears.
Dr. James Dobson, head of the conservative religious group Focus on the Family, has been widely quoted – and condemned – for comparing embryonic stem-cell research to Nazi death-camp experiments.

But he did not do so.

On the Aug. 3 broadcast of his Focus on the Family radio show, Dobson said:

... people talk about the potential for good that can come from destroying these little embryos and how we might be able to solve the problem of juvenile diabetes ... But I have to ask this question: In World War II, the Nazis experimented on human beings in horrible ways in the concentration camps, and I imagine, if you wanted to take the time to read about it, there would have been some discoveries there that benefited mankind.

You know, if you take a utilitarian approach, that if something results in good, then it is good. But that's obviously not true. We condemn what the Nazis did because there are some things that we always could do but we haven't done, because science always has to be guided by ethics and by morality. And you remove ethics and morality, and you get what happened in Nazi Germany.

It should be clear to any honest reader that Dobson was not morally equating embryonic stem-cell research to the hideous Nazi medical experiments on human beings (mostly, but not only, Jews). If he did, I would join the chorus of protesters.

Only a moral fool would compare what Nazi doctors did – such as exposing men and women to prolonged radiation of their genitals, slowly freezing naked men and women to death, or putting a person into a decompression chamber to watch his eardrums burst – to medically experimenting on embryonic cells that have no self-awareness, no feeling, no capacity to suffer, and no loved ones who suffer.

As Dobson himself put it to me on my radio show: "In the case of killing embryos, there is no suffering, no grieving victims, and so they're not the same, obviously."

The gulf between those who think they are "conservative" and The Church can only be bridged by a leap of faith on the part of those poor, dumb, bastards. May God have mercy on their souls.

Let me put it this way: Whom would you want to hold the power of life and death over you?

Dobson was not comparing actions – he was comparing ideas: namely, the idea that because good may result from an immoral action, the action becomes moral.

He is, of course, right. The only question is whether this rule applies to embryonic stem-cell research. On this, good people can and do differ. What good people must not do is attribute to James Dobson repugnant views he did not express. (Emphasis mine.)

Right pew, wrong church, boys.
Sure, ideas kill.
But actions kill a hell of a lot faster.
Just ask your friendly neighborhood "embryo".


If Judge Roberts wins the support of a majority of the U.S. Senate, he will become the fourth Roman Catholic on the U.S. Supreme Court.

Is that cause for alarm? It used to be said that one of the nine court chairs is "The Catholic Seat."


Is the possibility of four Catholic seats a sign that Roe v. Wade is likely to be overturned?

Go back to President Eisenhower in 1956 and to the Catholic layman he nominated and the Senate approved: William J. Brennan.

May God have mercy on his black, bloody, soul.

Justice Brennan was a strong supporter of the constitutional right to abortion. And four years after his nomination to the high court, a senator from Massachusetts, who was the second Roman Catholic ever nominated by a major party for the presidency, told the Greater Houston Ministerial Association: "I do not speak for my church on public matters, and the church does not speak for me."

Twenty-four years later, New York's Gov. Mario Cuomo declared that while he personally accepted his church's teachings on abortion, he could not impose those teachings on a pluralistic society.

On the Senate Judiciary Committee that will approve or veto Judge Roberts, four of the eight Democrats are Catholics, as are two of the 10 Republicans.

The New York Times reports:

Sen. Richard Durbin, Illinois Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, tried to have a private discussion with Judge Roberts about their shared Catholic religion and found himself embroiled in a controversy and denounced by religious conservatives. Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, the ranking Democrat on the committee, said he was once denounced on a Sunday morning talk show as "anti-Christian or anti-Catholic" – while he was at mass.

"It's a world upside down," said Mr. Leahy, who spoke nostalgically of the bright lines drawn by Kennedy in 1960.

Erotic images can turn you blind.

18:09 12 August 2005
NewScientist.com news service
By Gaia Vince

Researchers have finally found evidence for what good Catholic boys have known all along – erotic images make you go blind. The effect is temporary and lasts just a moment, but the research has added to road-safety campaigners’ calls to ban sexy billboard-advertising near busy roads, in the hope of preventing accidents.

That's not exactly how that cliche goes, but what can you expect from someone with the unfathomable name of Gaia?

The new study by US psychologists found that people shown erotic or gory images frequently fail to process images they see immediately afterwards. And the researchers say some personality types appear to be affected more than others by the phenomenon, known as “emotion-induced blindness”.

David Zald, from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, and Marvin Chun and colleagues from Yale University in Connecticut, showed hundreds of images to volunteers and asked them to pick a specific image from the rapid sequence. Most of the images were landscape or architectural scenes, but the psychologists included a few emotionally charged images, portraying violent or sexually provocative scenes.
The closer these emotionally charged images occurred prior to the target image, the more frequently people failed to spot the target image, the researchers found.

“We observed that people failed to detect visual images that appeared one-fifth of a second after emotional images, whereas they can detect those images with little problem after neutral images,” Zald says.

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Pope says society needs cross as reminder of people's shared dignity.

Amen to that.

The crucifix should be present in public and private places because this external symbol of God's presence is a reminder of humanity's shared God-given dignity, Pope Benedict XVI said.

"The modern world believed that by putting God aside" and following man's ideas and desires people could "become truly free," but that did not happen, the pope said during his homily at Mass Aug. 15, the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

The pope's comments came while he celebrated Mass at St. Thomas Church in Castel Gandolfo, where the papal summer residence is located south of Rome.

Only by exalting God's greatness, just as Mary did in her hymn of praise, the Magnificat, can people become great, the pope said in remarks apart from his prepared text.

The Magnificat is Luke 1:46-55.

"We must apply all this to our daily lives: It is important that God be great among us in both public and private life," he said.

It is important that "God be present in the symbol of the cross in public places, (that) God be present in our communal life because only if God is present (will) we have a guide, a common path," the pope said.

Without God, people lose their "divine dignity" and become "only a product of a blind evolution," he said.

By not recognizing humanity's divine dignity, people "can be used and abused," he said.

But it is this shared "splendor of God in one's face" that gives humanity the common ground it needs in the public sphere, the pope said.

Without recognizing God's presence, people have "nothing left in common" and "differences become irreconcilable," he said.

The pope emphasized that making God great in public and private life meant making "room for God every day," including morning prayer and "giving Sunday to God.

"Spending more time with God does not make one "lose time" or freedom, rather it makes the day "greater, fuller, richer," the pope said.

After celebrating the morning Mass, the pope also marked the feast of the Assumption with a noon blessing in the courtyard of the papal villa.

He said the Marian feast day is a reminder that "heaven is our final dwelling place" and that Mary is calling on people to welcome God's will with open arms.

The pope said in his Aug. 15 Angelus that Mary asks the faithful "to not be seduced by fallacies adorned with that which is ephemeral and transient, and to not give in to the temptations of egoism and evil that extinguish the joy of life from one's heart."

In an Aug. 14 Angelus address from the papal summer residence, Pope Benedict also encouraged people not to give up hope in God even during times of great trial.

God "never closes his eyes before the needs of his children, and if sometimes he seems unfeeling to their requests it is only to put them to the test and toughen their faith," he said.
(Thanks to the Catholic News Service for the heads up.)

Nessie lives...

...or, What do bored media types do with a pile of money and a bunch of sightseers?

AFTER decades of blurred photographs, snatches of wobbly cine-camera film and centuries of myth, tourists cruising Loch Ness aboard the Royal Scot could scarcely believe their eyes when a 16ft plesiosaurus reared out of the water in front of them.

However, what could have been the natural history coup of the century was last night revealed to be a £100,000 television stunt as Channel 5 revealed it placed a 440lb animatronic model of Nessie in Loch Ness to see if people would really believe they had seen the fabled monster.

The results of the test will be screened later this month as a 90-minute documentary, Loch Ness Monster: The Ultimate Experiment.

The task of building the fake Nessie fell to a Buckinghamshire special effects company, Crawley Creatures, run by film veteran Jez Harris, who was responsible for the character Jabba the Hutt in the Star Wars film Return of the Jedi and also created models for the BBC series Walking with Dinosaurs.

He revealed the fake Nessie was moulded as a cross between a plesiosaurus, the carnivorous reptile which roamed the seas up to 200 million years ago, and the popular image of the monster.

The special effects team spent 14 weeks building the model, nicknamed Lucy, from fibreglass and polyurethane rubber. Pneumatic air mechanisms inside the body allowed five different movements of the head, jaw and neck.

Initially, the fake Nessie was intended to be strapped on to a miniature submarine, but after several abortive tests, Lucy was operated by three divers using motorised pods.

During a two-week period of filming last September, the fake Nessie appeared before tourists in three locations - close to a campsite at the southern end of the loch; by the ruins of Urquhart Castle two miles from Drumnadrochit, and most conspicuously in front of the cruiser Royal Scot near its base at Fort Augustus.

Ricky MacDonald, the captain of the 111-passenger Royal Scot, co-operated with the documentary team to ensure that holidaymakers saw the fake Nessie on several occasions over a ten-minute period.

Mr MacDonald said the stunt was superior to earlier "primitive" attempts to fool the public, adding: "In the past, people have used things like a labrador dog with a stick in its mouth and three bales of hay covered with tarpaulin sheets." (Thanks to The Scotsman and WorldNetDaily for the heads up.)

About Me

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First of all, the word is SEX, not GENDER. If you are ever tempted to use the word GENDER, don't. The word is SEX! SEX! SEX! SEX! For example: "My sex is male." is correct. "My gender is male." means nothing. Look it up. What kind of sick neo-Puritan nonsense is this? Idiot left-fascists, get your blood-soaked paws off the English language. Hence I am choosing "male" under protest.


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