Monday, May 31, 2010

Israeli commandos kill Gaza aid volunteers
From truthout
Arturo on not being played in the culture wars
In the realm of personal choice in which we live, there is enough sentimentality, ignorant bigotry, and kitsch to go around, and to condemn someone for being too superficial in what he or she believes is like saying that the levees around New Orleans would be better fortified using bubble gum.

Once that straw
piñata has been thoroughly smashed to pieces, and the conservative readers have taken away the self-esteem candy, all can go away knowing that they serve the true (Hassidic, RC, High Church Anglican... i.e. decent bourgeois) God who compliments so well free enterprise, the Protestant work ethic, and a reactionary social agenda.

I think that, in a way, Mills and Co. commit the same errors that they accuse Lady Gaga and Co. of committing. The real ground of all religion in the modern world is cosmological agnosticism. The “spiritual not religious” crowd pretends to know nothing of God so that they can do whatever they want. The “orthodox religious” crowd pretends to know God so well that they can employ him for any agenda that is in their interest, all under the pretension that it is not their will, but God‘s. In either case, God is a puppet; he is a Casper the Friendly Ghost-character who fulfils their true desires and makes them feel good about themselves.

A Catholic peasant a hundred years ago would never say that he was “spiritual but not religious”, but that did not make him a foot soldier in a culture war either.
My mailing address in the Catholic cosmos is somewhere north of his folk religion, south of the SSPX and not Novus Ordo.
LRC’s alterna-Memorial Day
  • The prettification of war.
  • A list of anti-war films. Vonnegut related a conversation he had had with a friend on a troopship coming back from Europe. Vonnegut asked his friend: “What did you learn from all of this?,” to which the other man replied: “Never to believe your own government.” I’ve seen and recommend The Deer Hunter (Slav Orthodox from upstate Pennsylvania), Shenandoah, Wag the Dog (why Clinton bombed Belgrade on Easter, the catalyst for Lew Rockwell starting his site), Breaker Morant, Full Metal Jacket (not a simplistic pacifistic film: Kubrick said everything serious that R. Lee Ermey’s sergeant, ‘the real thing’, says is true), Das Boot (apolitical) and Born on the Fourth of July. Also: never saw the film but the book helped form me when I read it 26 years ago: The Quiet American.
  • The big one. As you can guess from much of my style I like the Greatest Generation very much. (Just yesterday at breakfast, on this box I was listening to Benny Goodman.) That said, as some readers don’t like, I’m a revisionist (and anti-FDR). The America Firsters were right; imperial Japan was bad but no threat to American sovereignty (doing business with them would have been like relations with Red China today) and let the Nazis and Communists destroy each other rather than sending boys from New York and Wisconsin to die in Europe, then handing half of Europe to a state worse than the Nazis (it killed more people). I’ve known American (including one Slav tough guy who later cried because he helped load the planes that bombed Dresden) and British veterans (actually defending their home and not just in a propaganda sense, a noble cause... my late rector was a Royal Navy rating stationed in the Mediterranean)... and a Russian and a Ukrainian who fought for the Germans against the USSR (likewise defending their home against something evil).
  • The best way I know of to support military families is to bring all the troops home from all of the 150+ countries they are in and never send them again to fight any foreign wars. This will also save us billions and billions of dollars, stop us from creating more terrorists, and stop us from needlessly killing any more foreigners.

Sunday, May 30, 2010






Mifflin Street

In 1967.
More.




More Impala dreams
This ’58 one won best in show at Collingswood, NJ’s May Fair yesterday. Amazingly a tattooed and pierced metalhead couple and I connected over this car! A sexy machine to drive to the Jersey shore flipping off Priuses as you go, leaving them in a twin-exhaust cloud.



Learning to bowl
Once I stopped trying to look like I knew what I was doing, slowed down and actually focused on what I was doing, I was fine

I bind unto myself today
If you were checking in today for religious insight, here’s an explanation of the Trinity given to me on last night’s walk at recreation, which perfectly encapsulates the healthy disinterest that monks generally have in systematic theology:
You have an old man with a beard, a young man with a beard, a dove, and a triangle that connects them. The Athanasian Creed explains the diagram. Go beyond that and you’ll probably get yourself into trouble.
He therefore that will be saved, let him thus think of the Trinity.
From Brother Stephen.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

From Joshua
  • Paulitical principles. Rand’s real problems are nothing to do with the media dogpiling but he’s one of the better candidates.
  • The left and Mao. Thinking people on the Left or Right have no use for anyone who approvingly cites history’s greatest mass-murderer. Looking for a moment at one of Joshua’s points, the Nazis were about a sort of populist resentment of the aristocracy, and about state control but not state ownership of the economy, neither of which are positions of the right.
  • The overthrow of the church and the rise of witchcraft. Mary’s treatment of respectable and law-abiding people who had no favours to ask, and were reasonably confident of getting to heaven by the regular judgment, without expense, rankled so deeply that three hundred years later the Puritan reformers were not satisfied with abolishing her, but sought to abolish the woman altogether as the cause of all evil in heaven and on earth. Then after the ‘Enlightenment’ shattered the faith of many of them, a couple of centuries later they started ordaining women including lesbians. New Age is a variation on the same theme: Christian ethics tweaked to accommodate name-the-issue, minus Christian theology. Meanwhile our holy mother the church remains what she was.
Terrorism, cause and effect
From antiwar.com
US Senate approves $60 billion in war funding
Including 33,000 more soldiers to Afghanistan and turning down Feingold’s withdrawal timetable. From truthout.
The putative peace president 16 months on
U.S. troops are still in Iraq even though they were promised to be out and the war has been escalated both in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan but without any clear objective as to where all this escalation goes if it doesn’t succeed, or if there’s a simple strategy for success.
Not a word from most people except @TAC. Those who were paying attention weren’t fooled and didn’t vote for him. I voted for Sestak in 2006 (‘fool me once...’) so I knew better.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Debunking ‘spiritual not religious’
From Rod Dreher
Will there ever be an American Orthodoxy?
Asks Rod Dreher about his church, writing about squabbles between ethnic jurisdictions (denominations in communion with but little to do with each other, which is perfectly normal in their church life; Orthodoxy itself is not a denomination) nothing to do with faith, morals or liturgical practice and (hooray) all well to the right of both the mainline and the American RC establishment. The usual stuff. Would an American Orthodoxy even be desirable? Possible bad result: Byzantine AmChurch. Another: the byzantinised evangelicalism Owen doesn’t like. I like the Slav version of the people Arturo knows, relaxed, traditionalist and not fundamentalist, in rust-belt parishes where it’s more or less still 1962.
From LRC
On being a burden
A Culture of Life article by William May with a thoughtful criticism of part of libertarian thought
Meilaender points out that in this life we do not come together as autonomous individuals freely contracting with each other.
Yes but the state is not your family.
Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.
Of course but that doesn’t mean the state has the right to steal your money.
From RR
  • Pork hurts your town. Bad government spending drives out good spending.
  • You don’t need government in order to take action against bigotry and discrimination. You don’t need government to force business owners to serve wants and needs by providing services and products to anyone who wants to voluntarily trade for them. The smart and savvy business owners will do that without any government involvement, provided the government stays out of the way. But there are people who simply don’t want you to realize that. Don’t fall for it when others try to complicate a basic principle. The only reason anyone tries to do this is to polarize, confuse and scare you. Polarized, confused and scared people are easier to control and manipulate.
  • As H.L. Mencken said, “the trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.” Libertarians aren’t always going to get pitched softball questions about small business owners and the regulations that harangue them or taxing and regulating marijuana. We have to actively defend what is often seen as the seedy underbelly of mainstream society: every nonaggressive but atypical lifestyle. The great unifying principle of liberty is that as long as a behavior isn’t using force or fraud, or threatening its use against others, it should not be stopped or prevented with force.
From Taki

Thursday, May 27, 2010

It’s called war porn
From Stephen Hand
From RR

Why long trips in space would not be as fun as shown in films and on TV
From Cracked
From the Future of Freedom Foundation
  • The confluence of left and right. Besides being right on the Constitution (freedom of non-association or you have the right to be a bigot), George Wallace was right about not a dime’s worth of difference. Besides the race-baiting he’ll always be remembered for, he was fond of getting government pork for his constituents so he wasn’t really a conservative. Philly’s Frank Rizzo had a similar problem.
  • Why they resent us. I recently saw this take on FDR from a mainstream conservative and thought the same thing.

Ecclesiastical bibs and bobs
  • Classic Anglo-Catholicism. From Philorthodox.
  • Infallible church and fallible church talk past each other: in the early 1990s... Catholics and Anglicans in the ARCIC debates were trying to answer two different questions. Catholic theologians ask whether a doctrine is true (and therefore should be held by all); Anglicans ask the question whether one could hold this doctrine and still be an Anglican; can this doctrine be held within the breadth of Anglicanism? Catholicism itself reduced to opinion (not to be confused with the legitimate range of opinions in Catholicism) is no longer Catholicism so no sale.
  • The Trinity, Our Lady and WASP bishops at Fr Toles’s.
  • Arturo: My grandparents could be “good Catholics”: go to their charismatic prayer meetings, and pray the rosary, all the while rubbing tomatoes on their feet to cure ailments while watching the somewhat raunchy telenovela on T.V. When I say that they weren’t “fundamentalists”, I don’t mean that they were progressive and believed in nothing. I mean that they weren’t hung up on symbols and causes: you just had to go along to get along.
  • Margaret: I see Russian girls all the time in little headscarves, short skirts and high heels and they are a joy. Young and unpretentious and in church. And what on earth is wrong with having hair and legs anyway?
  • On the Pope visiting Cyprus. The primate of the country’s Orthodox church tries to make peace. Interestingly it’s a state visit; no church talks. But that’s not good enough for some. The opinions of the crazies are indeed valid in Orthodoxy (as Fr Feeney’s are in Rome) but so are the archbishop’s. Again my line on all of this. Along with this.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

More nonsense trying to force equal outcomes
Which is not justice or charity: it would make it more dangerous to be in a fire in Chicago. Yes, a difficult test is the way to go. From Steve Sailer.

Young city rich discover gun rights
Yups, SWPLs et al. If you can get past the insufferability — ‘look how cool we are, yet we carry’ — you can see a libertarian teachable teaching moment. (Thanks, Brother Stephen.)
If everybody is more educated, less people are going to get hurt due to accidents.
Part of the message of the NRA.
As soon as I woke up I realized we had nothing to defend ourselves.

What it underscored is this concept that I’m responsible for my own safety.

It’s only a growing movement as far as I’m concerned, with the economy, and the city’s inability to protect people.

Carrying a firearm in a bank is not prohibited by law in Pennsylvania, although, like any business exercising private-property rights, individual banks can have a policy against it.

I really don’t think it matters what our feelings are ... you have a right to bear arms.

As for carrying, Laden says it’s a right. “I always thought it was normal to carry,” noting his grandfather holstered a revolver while running a local taproom in the 1950s. “Basically, I carry a gun because, unlike Nutter et al., I can’t carry a cop.”
Mass-and-office quotation
From Brother Stephen, who has an Anglo-Catholic background, in a patrimonialish entry echoing Paul Goings:
For the hundredth time, shame, shame, shame on all of the Roman Catholic expositors of the Extraordinary Form and the Reform of the Reform who can rustle up a choir, servers, and a photographer for High Masses of “Aida”-like proportions but can’t seem to summon up any enthusiasm for putting on a cotta, unlocking the church doors, and reciting the office on Sunday afternoon.
Which as Paul will point out you don’t need a priest to do.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Storm clouds in the Ukraine
The neocons at First Things rev up anti-Russianism. They have a point or two but I get the drift. (‘We miss the Cold War’? ‘We wish we were National Review in its glory days’? ‘Us and Santo Subito versus the commies’?)

First valid point: as a libertarian believer in religious liberty (I’m a ‘secular liberal’) I like the interfaith service before the presidential inauguration too.

That said: most of the Ukraine is Russian including Russian-speaking and most churchgoers, a minority in a secularised country, are... Russian Orthodox.
One of three contending Orthodox jurisdictions in Ukraine.
Bias alert! That’s like saying Rome, Utrecht and that woman in Italy ordained by vagantes recently are in ‘contending Roman Catholic jurisdictions in Western Europe’. Not so much. The Russian Orthodox Church is the Ukraine’s Orthodox church. The others left the Orthodox communion. Still ‘in the family’ so to speak (the Eastern word for that is ‘parasynagogue’, which makes it sound like the Haredim are up to something) but technically not part of the Orthodox Church. Just like Roman Catholic in my blog means truly under Rome.
The Russian Orthodox Church is making a tacit claim to spiritual jurisdiction in Ukraine.
Cue ‘Song of the Volga Boatman’ evil-empire music.

It has an explicit and, according to its polity, legitimate claim to that jurisdiction... over the Orthodox there.
The Greek Catholic Church of Ukraine, Byzantine in liturgy and polity but in full communion with Rome since the 1596 Union of Brest, was the repository of Ukrainian national identity and aspiration throughout the Soviet period.
Yes but:

To be fair, the Greek Catholic Church once included much of the Ukraine and Byelorussia besides, and tsarist Russian expansion into those lands and persecution ended that, but that was centuries ago. The home of Ukrainian Greek Catholicism, the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian nationalism is old Galicia (where Lemberg/Lvov is), the present-day Ukraine’s south-western corner, which from the 1300s until Soviet conquest in WWII was part of Poland.
Knowing this, Stalin used his control over the Russian Orthodox Patriarchate of Moscow to attempt a canonical liquidation of the Greek Catholic Church of Ukraine. In the so-called L’viv Sobor of 1946, “representatives” of the Greek Catholic Church (under the watchful eye of the secret police) dissolved the Union of Brest and placed themselves under the canonical jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Moscow... Those who did not became members of the largest illegal religious body in the world. From 1946 until 1991, the Greek Catholic Church of Ukraine lived underground: clandestinely worshipping in the woods, clandestinely training and ordaining clergy, with most of its hierarchy dying martyrs’ death in the camps of the Gulag or by outright execution.
True. The UGCC was heroic, a working model of how a traditional Catholic church can survive decades of persecution in a modern including urban setting.
As if pervasive, creeping Novus Ordofying among Eastern Catholics weren’t bad enough
It’s obvious if you don’t live in it... this joker (not an Eastern Catholic but a bishop) wants to make it worse, perhaps taking off the ecumenical mask and saying what many liberal clerics really think?
They also need pastoral and liturgical renewal. The Latin Church went through this change at the Second Vatican Council, which revolutionized its liturgy and ecclesiology and gave it a new openness to the world. The Eastern Churches are in need of a similar revolution so that they might be able to adapt and modernize and thus better meet the needs of their congregations today.
Jean speaks for me on this.

I was just thinking this morning regarding RC/Eastern Orthodox relations that it’s amazing how much each side can honestly resemble the other, from the small minority amongst Greek Catholics of liturgically correct ones (the little Russian Catholic churches in NY, which I’ve been to, LA and SF; Melkite churches; St Elias Ukrainian in Ontario... by the Orthodox books, which is what Rome wants) to the Antiochian Western Rite Orthodox (St Augustine’s, Denver, doing English Missal, the Tridentine Mass in Tudor-style English) who strongly resemble Pope Benedict’s revival effort. There’s one insurmountable issue but all that is still good to see.

Of course honest liberals would hate it.

From here.
Two on individualism and its price

From Mark Shea
Libertarianism and its discontents
From RR

From LRC

From Cracked
Catholic cultural serendipity
Arturo’s latest

Monday, May 24, 2010

From Joshua
Two from Dr Tighe
  • I hope this is true.
  • Little-known English history that Fr Hunwicke has written about before. Martyrs in 1549 who were Henrician Anglicans but didn’t go along with the change from the Latin books to the first Prayer Book. But given the history as described by Christopher Haigh in a book Dr Tighe gave me, they should have seen this coming. Henry may not have liked the Protestants but like a ecclesiastical yo-yo he gave them free rein now and then depending on his political situation with the European powers. The evolution of Anglican ecclesiology: from ‘go to the king’s church — or else!’ (which superficially looks like our one-true-church claim and the ‘error has no rights’ view of our right wing towards religious liberty, but really isn’t... high-church doesn’t necessarily mean Catholic) to ‘believe what you want as long as you don’t teach it as exclusive truth (and, in the older way and still on paper, give lip service to credal orthodoxy) and then your bishop gets to meet the king/queen every 10 years’. The thread in common: denying objective truth which though appearing humble is actually a claim of absolute power over reality.
Justin Raimondo on Rand Paul
From RR
House votes to expand national DNA arrest database
From John

From LRC
  • Obama’s NWO. I love the way that he spends most of this segment of the speech discussing things we should be afraid of, i.e., global “terrorism” (which, of course, he conveniently forgets is instigated by our presence in the “terrorists’” country—not because “they hate us for our freedoms”) and global “warming,” but then ends the segment by saying that we shouldn’t be afraid of them! NOTE TO OBAMA: We already have a terrific, peaceful international order; it’s called the free market.
  • The enforcement of rights. I can alredy hear the objections from well-meaning Christians. There is objective truth such as natural law; not just contract law. The point is it’s not in the state’s power nor effective really for the state to try to enforce it.
From Taki
  • Obama: slowly but surely stealing our retirement savings.
  • Aw, shucks. The understandable red-state appeal of George W. Bush as depicted (thanks, Brian M.) in an imaginary post-presidential interview, the good ol’ boy who can throw a baseball. I still think Dick Cheney was the real president. Bush was like the out-of-it late Tsar, a nice country gentleman fed lies by his ministers really running the country. Like plausible deniability: he told untruths he thought were true.
    Well, the critics just assumed my degree was bought and paid for by my dad. The thing I don’t get about that assumption is, shouldn’t there be more outrage that Yale is selling diplomas? That’d be bigger than Watergate. You’re a journalist. Get on it, boy.
    Two good ol’ boys:
    He’s actually a hilarious guy. We were painted as enemies but I really like Bill Clinton. He’d often make me laugh so hard, I’d spit my beer out.
    I don’t miss him (Cheney) politically. But I’ll give credit where it’s due: he didn’t invade Iran though some in the administration wanted him to, and he wanted to do something (regrettably, a state solution) about the mortgage bubble about five or six years before it burst. Video (thanks, John): Barney Frank thought everything was just fine. Sailer’s point: handing people, because of their colour, mortgages they can’t afford is obviously bad business and illogical. But like the burst bubble, Bush’s jacking up the debt (not a fiscal conservative nor a true foreign-policy one) for his wars also contributed to the depression.

    But:
    Do you regret the war in the Middle East?

    Do I regret sending our guys down there? No I do not. I obviously don’t want any soldiers to die and my heart goes out to their families but the war was a decision we made as a country to fight, not just Osama bin Laden but, really, extremist Islam.

    Think of it this way: Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world. We’re not far from the day it outnumbers Christianity. A lot of Americans, myself included, aren’t too happy with those odds. Now, I accept that almost half the population doesn’t want this war but a lot of us still see it as fighting the good fight.

    We saw the terrorism that Extremist Islam begets as a threat to our way of life. It’s like the modern version of the Cold War. They’re our commies.
    Er, Iraq was nothing to do with Osama bin Laden; it was a secular country, the sort of Muslims he hates. You don’t want to live in a Muslim country. Want to see a scary one? Look at Saudi Arabia, where incidentally most of the 9/11 hijackers were from.

    This is interesting, agreeing with Charley’s point that Bush is just an easygoing liberal Protestant like his dad in the Rockefeller Republican mould, only slightly more moralistic (his wife’s Methodism helping him kick alcohol abuse), and not the evangelical Karl Rove painted him as:
    I’m not talking about the whole religion obviously but a huge portion of Islam is about uniting church and state. We spent a long time separating the two and there’s no need to go backwards.
    So sure, he was dead wrong about war in the Near East but not the theocrat the left made him out to be. (And think about it: aren’t the churchmen who want state gay marriage — faiths have the right to govern themselves so the liberal Protestants can go right ahead — trying to impose their faith on Catholics, on their own Protestant brethren of the conservative persuasion, and others? Scratch a cuddly granola; find a Cromwell.)


Booker T. and the MGs, ‘Green Onions’

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Pentecost variations
From NLM

This morning for Slav-style Pentecost I saw tree branches all over the church and green leaves all over the floor as if somebody had left all the windows open and a storm had passed through. A mighty wind indeed.
Ship thread on the Rosary
The ever-changing definition of ‘diversity’
The government should not have an agenda regarding race, other than promoting peace and prosperity. If it is determined to racially re-engineer society, it is exceeding its authority. Nor should we be bullied by squeaky wheels who threaten violence or expensive court battles if they don’t receive the quotas or other forms of special treatment they feel entitled to.
One may not necessarily like his opinions but they’re in bounds; he doesn’t want to base the law on them. From Taki.
The economy and revolution
From Rod Dreher
From Joshua
Gin, lace and backbiting
And a priest called ‘Clarissa’ behind his back. William Oddie from 1996 on a reason conversions into the ordinariates might be fewer than hoped for; the same reason they weren’t forthcoming when he wrote this. From Dr Tighe.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Rand Paul and the zombies
From @TAC
Taki himself’s latest
Remembering 1950s swank in NYC:
Last week after a liquid lunch I looked at the Seagram fountains and thought back of the time I first crossed the esplanade on the way to work. It all seemed so damn glamorous and not a track suit in sight.
On the decline of WASPs (well, their not having very many kids helped):
The powers that be which replaced the dinosaurs are politically correct bores and busybodies.
But of course that means WASPdom including its bad parts didn’t really lose (he’s describing quintessential English Calvinism even after it’s lost its faith and pigged out on granola); it just changed from an ethnic to a cultural thing.

It’s a mad, mad, mad, mad world: nobody in the ‘Mad Men’ era could have imagined this:
The Empire State Building was alit in red and yellow last autumn to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Chinese Communist revolution by that arch prick Mao, a man with the blood of 77 million on his hands. In other words mass murderers are to be celebrated.
From Rod Dreher
From The Onion via Samer
Cultured conservatism
Much the point NLM makes writing about the Other Modern: Gothic, baroque and ’50s revivals are wonderful but not the only ways to go. Innovation and orthodoxy aren’t mutually exclusive and we don’t have to be stuck with pastiche if we don’t want to.
One of the things I run into in the conservative movement today is the notion that there is only one aesthetic style appropriate to a conservative vision — neoclassicism. I find that to be simplistic, this notion that all poems must be sonnets and all buildings must have Greek columns. Conservatives have a much more calcified attitude toward the arts than they should. They should be more Burkean in their understanding of how culture changes. They should remember that culture, in order to preserve the mystery of perennial truths, needs to seek new forms. This goes back to the issue of contingency and humility: no single style can encompass all of reality. Eliot wrote “The Waste Land” as a series of fragments that reflected modern fragmentation, and some conservatives have damned him for that. Yet if you read the poem carefully, you will see how those fragments point to a wholeness that can heal the divisions of modernity. Eliot, the non-classicist, imaginatively inhabits modernity but subtly undermines it, demonstrating a truly conservative vision.
That and being choosy about the present, like a less extreme version of the Amish.

From Joshua.
From RR
Will the PIGS blow up the empire?
Pat Buchanan:
Why not quit the EMU, default, repudiate the euro, restore the drachma and devalue? That would make Greek exports more competitive and make Greece a more desirable place in which to site one’s next factory. And with its currency devalued, Greece would also become a more attractive destination for Western tourists.
From LRC
An article from the left on Rand Paul
From truthout
Airing otherwise unpalatable truths
Derb at Taki on ‘Two and a Half Men’

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Latinos as a stage army for élites
I give Sailer’s premise about genetics and talent a hearing (enough to get you kicked out of polite society as a not-nice white person) but I don’t go along with his goal — writing the law to keep out immigrants he says are genetically inferior (which really is racist — the factors he writes about are not determinative). Here he makes a good point. In other words, as the Anti-Gnostic has noted, élites don’t really care about the bourgeois they want to rule; likewise the left don’t really like Latinos any more than Sailer does.

In a way what he criticises about Mexicans is a good thing, a traditional and Catholic one: being familial and local (gotta love subsidiarity) and not statist like the president neither of us likes.
A wave against incumbents
So much potential. From T1:9.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Rand wins!
liberty-candidates.org
A voters’ guide
Every natural disaster, human error...
... or manifestation of Original Sin is an occasion not just for an exercise in national breast-beating but for some piece of sweeping legislation that will eliminate risk or eradicate evil... We are especially prone to legislative hysteria when children are involved.
From Joshua.
From Ad Orientem

From Rod Dreher

From LRC
From Fr Hunwicke
  • Lectionary systems. People from Bishop Peter Robinson (here’s a good recent entry from him on churchmanships) to Derek Olsen agree that our holy mother the church (a concept foreign to even high Protestants but anyway) knew what she was doing when she developed, in more than one rite (the Orthodox do it), one-year lectionaries as the best way to teach people, because most people can only retain so much. Robinson: three-year schemes look good on paper but mean the people only know scripture about a third as well.
  • On Newman: blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true man. Newman goes on to ... speak of those in his own day who condemned devotion to Mary as (unconsciously) heretics.
  • Gabbling the Mass. More from Newman. Fr H: For classical Protestantism, the Eucharist is an acted word; it is a sermon dramatised; it is intended to instruct the witnesses and draw their heart to that saving faith which justifies. But for the Catholic, it is an opus operatum; an action which by the powerful and indefectible promise of Christ is objectively (not merely subjectively and in the heart of the believer) effective.
Liberal Christian sophistry hung out to dry
Chris Johnson 1, Ruth Gledhill nil
The government as identity thieves
By Ron Paul. From RR.

Monday, May 17, 2010

The banking system is in effective government control
This is “control without ownership,” or fascism, rather than socialism.
From Joshua.

Go, Rand, go!
More
Haim Saban
From Steve Sailer
Some dictatorships are more equal than others
From the Bovina Bloviator
From Ethics Forum
In which I’m reminded that the enemy of one’s opponents on such and such an issue is not necessarily your ally, and to be fair to the mainline, at least some of the conversions to the Catholic churches are the Protestant religious right (pro-Israel and all) doing business under new management. There’s the temptation to be snobbish and go so far in the opposite direction from the converts that you end up a mainliner functionally but it’s still sometimes true.
  • Iranian sabre-rattling. And, heaven forfend, a threat to Israel? Given that Persians are a religious and ethnic minority in the area (Shi’ites and Sunnis are farther apart than Catholics and Protestants, and I don’t see Persians ruling a majority of Arabs) and I don’t see a threat to the US (Russell Kirk: the American capital is not Tel Aviv), I don’t care.
  • The Times, probably not unbiased, reporting on the Pope on social/political issues. The Catholic faith is clear: there is no such thing as gay marriage. But non-Catholics claiming there is such a thing is no threat to me as long as the state is secular not secularist, or the left often aren’t as fair as they might pretend to me: that’s the ‘insidious challenge’ to a just society and not what some people do with their love lives.
  • One more on the Episcopalians and I’m done. That’s really about all Protestants, especially all mainliners, and doesn’t pick on that denomination. Never mind English understatement and be bold: ‘We’re not Catholics. We can change our doctrine and have done. If you don’t like it, leave; only don’t steal the building. Have a nice day.’
Fun speculation: what the ordinariates’ missals will/should be
Chomsky denied entry into Israel
From RR
‘Never let a good crisis go to waste’
From Front Porch Republic
From LRC
‘Burning issues’ I don’t care about
  • Which country Obama was born in. I know it’s in the Constitution but it’s silly, the chances of him being foreign-born are very unlikely and although the anti-birthers seem fun to tease it’s just not worth it. He’s not the root of the problem anyway so throwing him out on a technicality wouldn’t accomplish anything.
  • Elena Kagan’s sex life. Again, how is she on the Constitution?
  • The religious make-up of the Supreme Court. Because of the First Amendment, because non-WASPs who make it that high are WASPified (SWPLified) in their views where it counts anyway and although of course I want to keep the old way’s virtues — fair play/sportsmanship, objective rule of law, duty/responsibility and at its best meritocracy — when you think about it even today the SWPLs say to Catholics, ‘It’s our country; you’re just visiting, so run along and entertain us by being vibrant while we run your lives’, so the worst of old WASPdom isn’t going away.
  • Oldline Protestants governing themselves. As long as they don’t try to take away Catholics’ self-government (for our own good, have the state call the shots... as I was saying just now, plus ça change), we’re good.

Who I’ll vote for tomorrow
As I’m a Republican on paper (for Ron Paul’s sake in ’08), might as well make the most of it even though the right people won’t win
The Emperor enthroned in Washington has been reduced to a factotum regarding Israel and Pax Israeliana
From Taki


Want highlights? Watch the news!
From here and here. I went to a place like this until the man died. More.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Ecclesiastical bibs and bobs
  • The recent episcopal consecration. Of my old acquaintance Fr Michael Dahulich, now the OCA Bishop of New York. Father came from the Johnstown Diocese, the 1930s split from the Greek Catholics to the Orthodox nothing to do with religion and really about the local Irish wanting to take the Ruthenians’ married priests away. He and the diocese always struck me as good old-school (in upstate Pennsylvanian parishes essentially it’s 1962), what the Greek Catholics might have been if Vatican II hadn’t ruined things. Anyway of course I wish him well.
  • My last word on mainline Protestants’ internal affairs. Likewise I wish them well.
On downloading movies and TV
Only a mad person will think that you can make a business plan out of charging people for an inconvenient, limited, hard-to-use approach to a problem that can be solved conveniently, flexibly, simply, for free.
From AKMA.
Signs you might be part of the herd

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Donk donk! Goodbye, ‘Law & Order’?
Wow. I’ve been watching it for at least 10 years. For all its faults — preachy leftism, formula/predictability (the cops are pushing somebody around but it’s only 10 minutes into the show so you know he’s not the culprit) and flouting of the law (see above on cops, and ‘righteous’ state attorneys like Jack McCoy trashing the Constitution to get people who personally offend them) — it was entertaining and educational (real law-school classes watch and discuss the episodes). That the ‘good guys’ are not all good and the culprit sometimes gets away with the crime were signs of its maturity: good writing and good acting.
Why Amish businesses don’t fail
Karen De Coster:
Because they don’t open Cold Stone Creamery stores and other embarrassing reminders of the Credit Bubble’s infatuation with adolescence.
As I’ve said here before, the misunderstood Amish don’t live in the past; they live with the past, which is normal (just like Catholic cultures do), and selectively with the present — He uses terms like “out of the box,” routinely reads business books (especially those with a religious business bent), and has attended seminars by motivational and performance training guru Zig Ziglar — in order to keep their local churches together. In other words all their archaisms have a practical, not nostalgic, reason (if community members don’t own cars — but they are allowed to ride in them — the community doesn’t break up for example). Some things in their culture are symbolic: no moustaches because as pacifists they associate them with the military in the German land they came from 300 years ago.
I guess you just have to stay true to your convictions and draw your own lines and not overdo it where you lose the values and your way of life.
From The Onion
Revenge: an insurrection?
From LRC

Friday, May 14, 2010

From philly.com

From Joshua


How most pop songs sound alike
From The Bovina Bloviator

Unlike when big-band horns and singers, rockabilly, doo-wop, orchestral sounds, Italian folk songs and novelty tunes were elbowing each other on the charts.
On the media coverage of the clerical sex scandal as just another mask for anti-Romanism
The day will dawn when our Chattering Classes, fresh from screaming at the Church for covering up pedophilia, will scream at her for condemning it.

The Church’s leaders are capable of hypocrisy and sin because there is a real body of teaching for them to betray and sin against. Post-moderns solve the problem of sin by jettisoning principle. Relativism is the euthanasia of the soul.
Mark Shea
A writer’s jaundiced view of the arts in schools
To balance that, as part of my job I’ve been to three (so far) of the rich state high schools it covers. At one last week I happened to see a big art exhibit and... was impressed by the talent and maturity. From Steve Sailer.