Saturday, July 31, 2010

‘Is Italy too Italian?’
...the usual chatter from economists about how Italy is doomed because it hasn’t embraced globalization fully enough, chatter I’ve been reading for the last 35 years about how Italy is imminently going to collapse because it’s not getting with the program.

If economists were running things in Italy, all those “millions in ill-fated manufacturing jobs” would already have had to “otherwise find work as, for instance, taxi drivers.” And the rest could have gotten jobs at fast-food restaurants.

Why won’t Italians get with the program and outsource their entire manufacturing base to China?

Subversively, however, Segal occasionally stops to note that, no matter how badly Italy violates Contemporary Economic Theory 101 by refusing to go down the cheap-labor route, his lying eyes tell him the place looks pretty good.

The Italians, unlike the Greeks, are born savers, and much of the Italian debt is owned by the Italians. That means that unlike Greece, which will be sending a sizable percentage of its GDP to foreign creditors for a generation to come, Italy is basically in hock to its own citizens.

And this is a country that never had a housing bust or a major bank crisis.
They haven’t? That’s downright un-American of them.
So how does Italy keep going? Given the numbers, you expect it to be flat on its back. But when you visit, there are hardly any signs of despair ...

One answer is the black economy, say economists.

Most Italians have little sense of national identity, an obstacle to a system of national taxation.

The suspicion of Italians when it comes to extra-familial institutions explains why many here care more about protecting what they have than enhancing their wealth. So thousands of companies here remain stubbornly small — all of which means Italy is a haven for artisans but is in a lousy position to play the global domination game.
Those damn Italians, always refusing to play the global domination game. We ought to shoot some cruise missiles at them, just on general principles.

You know, I’m starting to rethink this whole High Trust = Good / Low Trust = Bad paradigm, which I’ve been guilty of pushing. Maybe we Americans could learn a little from the wisdom of the Italians. They’ve been an advanced, urbanized civilization for thousands of years, and maybe they’ve learned a thing or two about whom you can trust in the long run.

From Steve Sailer.
Do typefaces really matter?
Compare to Cracked on the matter. Years of self-taught newspaper-page design and Web-page design have taught me KISS — ‘keep it simple, stupid’ — and the elegance of ‘less is more’.

Independence Hall Tea Party rally
It confirmed what I thought: seemingly a lot of libertarian potential but with red-state fascism (pro-war and anti-immigrant) mixed in so I wonder if it’s only the GOP in disguise.
A Protestant all along
A liberal priest in the Church of Ireland, a denomination that’s always been a tiny minority of the Irish (they didn’t buy the king’s religion even when he tried to persuade them by force), embraces what he always was. I don’t want to go all Chris Johnson (sorry, my friend) and obsess about/pick on the Anglicans but this reminds me of a survey I once heard of in which most lay Episcopalians — nice mannerly WASPs, the Gerald Fords and George H.W. Bushes — of course said they were Protestants but most Episcopal priests said they weren’t, which didn’t, like their very widespread use of ‘Father’ and chasubles imply, mean they were Anglo-Catholics but rather was a liberal statement against the conservative Protestants they looked down on much like Neill does. Of course left or right Protestant is Protestant — fallible church that really means no rule of law in the form of doctrine (which limits the Pope for example) so it’s not humble but a claim of absolute power — so in that sense Neill’s right. I see at least one of the usual combox chorus of old angry ex-RCs who are the shrinking Episcopalians’ online amen corner.

Some different commentary:
One would think that part of styling oneself a “liberal” would be a desire (if not the ability) to listen sympathetically to those with whom one disagrees, with a view to understanding them and engaging them in their own terms. Alas, the Revd Mr Neill shows neither that ability nor the ability to think clearly.
Not shocking. See above on the claim to absolute power.

From Dr Tighe.
Pedes Christi
Hip, hip, hurrah! Not only has old (no, he’s not old) acquaintance Michael LaRue had a blog for some time but like another old but still young acquaintance, David Ermine, he’s now a Knight of Malta. Since I met him in 1993, when he was a good SSC priest, he’s had a long, wonderful journey.

Blog highlights:
  • Dealing with anger in which he still sounds like a wise pastor.
  • On Christian manliness. Basically by grace ennobling the crude alpha strengths Roissy preaches about.
  • Including the most un-Roissyan chastity in one’s state of life. I remember a few years ago listening to an prominent and well-known Catholic layman extolling the virtues of self-mastery when it came to sexuality. The thought that came to mind as he spoke was, “He hasn’t mastered his sexuality, he has just repressed it!’ It’s worth remembering that virtue comes from vir, a clue that it means more than a quaint euphemism for a woman’s virginity.
  • The danger of ritualism or why I’m not as avid a reader of NLM as you might think. He and I have probably been acquainted with enough spikey vicars of Bray (thanks for that phrase, Margaret) including gays who just like to dress up (like all stereotypes this has a lot of truth). Of course Catholicism and ritual go together and ritualism’s mirror fault, the Thomas Day factor of Irish-American hostility to ritual, is wrong too. Eastern Orthodoxy has its problems in practice too, such as xenophobic anti-Western Old Country folk (but not nearly as many ethnic born members are like that as you think) and fanatical, puritanical converts (Bob Jones goes high-church, goes online and becomes unholy terror Barsanuphius Jones; they also glom onto the obnoxious anti- stuff from the Old Country), but this doesn’t seem to be a big one there. More ritualistic than the Roman Rite (including the old version) most of the time but never for its own sake.
From RR
The futility of modern politics? Also, Italian vs Mexican folk magic.
Henry Karlson:
Modernity has made it seem as everyone must be into politics, and if you are not, you are “ducking the relevant issues.” However, for most of history, most people were not connected to politics in any major way — they were free to be their own person, to pursue their own proper place in the world and let the politicians deal with politics. Democratic states create the illusion that one’s political activity means something and so everyone must be active in politics or one is not doing one’s duty – in this way, politics has become a religious obligation, and a state religion. But as de Maistre among others show, this spectacle is ridiculous because it is based upon ideologies which are self-contradictory — when mobs rule, the individual is sucked up anyway.

I do know the rise of political activism has come hand in hand with the decrease in the general public’s connection with Catholicism. The state has its calendar – it becomes more important than the ecclesial ones with its festivals. The state has its laws – which become more important than canon law. The state has its leaders – who are seen as more important than ecclesial leaders. The state has its ideals – which are read into the church’s. The dream the positivists have of state religion is true, and I would say the bread and circuses (sports) are a part of the state religion too — it’s the folk aspect of it.
To some people’s pain I won’t stop blogging but this makes me feel better still about staying home in November 2008 (Ron Paul said not to write him in).

From Arturo.’s week that was

Friday, July 30, 2010

Putt knot yore trussed in spellchequers
The Cupertino effect, nothing to do with saints who could fly. Yes, it should be ‘spelling-checkers’ even though it doesn’t sound as good. From Steve Hayes.

GM’s electric lemon
From the MCJ
Coming home at last?
From the wars. Pat Buchanan’s latest. From Joshua.
The prejudice nobody writes about
From Damian Thompson
Why have so few reacted to the WaPo series on the secret government?
From John Boyden
I thirst
Words spoken 2,000 years ago come to mind reading this story involving the same players.
From Joshua.
Today’s hail of bullets from RR
  • Little things mean a lot. Dutch quit Afghanistan.
  • First ‘Mad Men’; now this. Doomsday shelters making a comeback.
  • Is the Jordan River unsafe for baptisms?
  • Know your enemy. NATO deliberately targeted power and water infrastructure in Serbia, in order to demoralize the civilian population. As NATO spokesman Jamie Shea said, ‘If President Milosevic really wants all of his population to have water and electricity all he has to do is accept NATO’s five conditions and we will stop this campaign.’ And in Iraq, the death toll from two decades of strategic bombing, sanctions and infrastructure damage is into the millions. The United States unleashed the equivalent of two Haiti earthquakes on two defenseless countries.
  • Forced to be free.
  • Pathologising ourselves.
  • Sex and the law. A word from Roissy: What the f*** is up with statutory rape? It’s a joke law made up by joke legislators without a scintilla of real-world experience with women. At the borderline of 16 to 18 years old, many women could easily pass for mid to late 20s. It is well known by neuroscientists and psychologists studying these things that women mature faster than men. A 17-year-old hottie who flirts with me knows exactly what she is doing and what she wants. And what about women who lie? They exist, lots of them. It’s time to end the charade. If the “underage” woman is physically developed, and she consents to the sex, there is no rape charge, period. For chrissakes, there are 14-year-olds in parts of the world getting married off and pumping out children of their own. BTW my theory for the moment about him is he’s a more aware version of the guys he’s trying to help: not (in his and other PUAs’ terms) an alpha himself (then he wouldn’t help the competition) but a Promethean figure, a wised-up greater beta helping a brother out. The Anti-Gnostic: Beneath the bluster and decadence is a very substantive, traditionalist message. Roissy is one of those people despised in turn by the Left for his reactionary opinions and by the Right for his (purportedly) dissolute lifestyle. Anybody demonized by all sides of the political spectrum is usually worth a listen in my experience. The fallen natural order described accurately... from Satan’s POV. Summing up his points: women are as evil as men, sex is fun and liberalism is bulls*** nobody really believes (even when they’re socialised to say they do, they act according to nature: women don’t like nice wimps).
  • Let the markets thrive so people can. From Joshua’s bailiwick, after more than 50 years of North-South Korean tension, it’s time to end the socialist fantasy and restore markets and freedom to the North.
  • Tea Party to rally on 9/11 anniversary and it scares part of the left, which recommends the rally to me. But I see the article’s point (no to the red-state fascists: the wannabe theocrats and anti-immigrationists), or why I don’t vote for the Constitution Party which seems more to do with regurgitated protty moral-majoritarianism than the Constitution. (But better Chuck Baldwin than mainstream pols.) But to be fair, to the Tea Party’s credit here I don’t see any sabre-rattling or anti-Arabism. No, the bolshies hate them because they, gasp, hate the government. Good.
  • Col. Andrew Bacevich: the Western way of war has run its course.
  • Answering a lefty whine to libertarians. ‘Under Bush, where were you?’ Where was I? Since 2002 doing what I’m doing right now. Under our Lord, God and Saviour Barack Obama, where are you?

Eastern University
I was here this morning videoing this for the paper.

Beautiful grounds, the old home of the Walton family in the glory days of the Main Line. (I met one of them once; sweet girl.) Nice people too. It’s affiliated with Tripp’s church.
From Steve Sailer

Reality-TV ideas
We’re dumbed down and as I’ve been saying for a while only a jump away from gladiatorial games. From Cracked.

BTW ‘The Apprentice’ (which used to be educational about business; I don’t watch the celebrity charity one) has been re-marketed for the depression.
Derb takes a page from Sailer
The theory about average group intelligences is fine (no nice-white-guy posturing from me); the political solution its fans want (un-libertarian race-baiting) not. (Affirmative action, no; non-discrimination in this context, yes.) At least Sailer acknowledges there are smart people in Mexico; of course most of its all-stars are the ruling élite and don’t leave. (Who else smells on Derb here the Black Legend and its implied anti-Catholicism?) Individual liberty trumps both La Raza and what little’s left of the Klan.
There is even an extreme position — I don’t hold it myself, but you sometimes see it expressed on race-realist websites — that black Americans are too few in numbers and too helplessly dependent to matter at all, and that the race issue in the U.S.A. is entirely a status contest between different groups of whites, with blacks and Hispanics as passive tokens.

I don’t myself, as I said, believe this is the whole truth; but it is some of the truth. I am speaking here of “the narcissism of small differences.” It is my experience that among white Americans of all regions and classes, feelings about black people — much less Hispanic people — in the generality are never as strong as feelings about other white groups. The passion you can hear from a liberal college professor in Massachusetts when he is talking about, say, NASCAR fans, far exceeds anything he will exhibit in regards to black people, if he ever thinks about black people at all. And vice, to some degree, versa. This is the dark lie at the heart of all the babble about “racism.”

(Jared once told me that when he speaks to mixed audiences most of the angry vituperation comes from whites. Blacks more often listen to him with interested curiosity, and come up afterwards to ask thoughtful questions. I note that Ms. Hines, his
Washington Examiner interviewer, is black.)

Divisions among whites matter, too.
Oh, yes. Even when both sides passed through Calvinism. SWPL/Nascar, blue/red, North/South = English/Scottish.

America’s British culture
From Taki.

Moustache styles that don’t work on most of us
Or chances are you’re not Tom Selleck. From Cracked.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Impala porn

A Pope who knew how to Pope

Pius XII photo gallery. ‘To Pope’ meaning ‘to be a Pope’ not in the Anglican sense of ‘to convert’. The papal Mass then was the height of churchmanship itself and a tour of liturgical history: things such as a deacon in Orthodox vestments chanting the gospel in Greek, and the Pope receiving Communion standing at his throne, using a fistula (gold tube/straw).

Clem’s: 20 years ago vs now
From Fr Timothy Matkin and the Wayback Machine via Anglican Patrimony. More.
State bureaucracy is stupid
Clearwater’s lifeguard station needs to be handicapped-accessible.
Who else sees the parallel to affirmative-action/disparate-impact lawsuits (‘I didn’t pass the test but deserve the job because I’m _____’) and another game the only point of which is for the PC to be holier-than-thou?

From John J. O’Sullivan.
Another Lower Merion School District webcam lawsuit
Check out its statement:
...continued litigation is clearly not the right way to proceed and not in the best interest of the students or the school-district community. While the results of that investigation reveal that mistakes were made...
Nixon not only undermined himself...
... but, says Republican Jerry Scott, cost America victory in Vietnam
The Paris Peace Treaty, which was signed on Jan. 27, 1973, ended the Vietnam War. It was presumed at the time that, if North Vietnam violated the terms of the treaty, President Nixon would resume bombing Hanoi immediately. Once Nixon resigned to avoid almost certain impeachment, Congress cut off all funding to Vietnam. Saigon fell on April 30, 1975. We now have peaceful relations with Vietnam. We are their largest customer. Hanoi, in particular, is a beautiful city to walk around in, which I did a couple of years ago.
A local Tea Party
Not necessarily an endorsement. Again it has libertarian potential.
  • The Anglican Church in Ghana is no longer Anglo-Catholic. I’ve long stopped being surprised or angry really. This stuff is now mainline old hat like another of their favourite subjects. (If one of their denominations quits Christianity like the Unitarians, that would be unsurprising but news.) Besides your bishop gets to chat with the Queen every 10 years, Anglicanism means everything’s subject to change by vote (and nobody tells us who we can’t sleep with, going back to a certain king). It’s not about the girls or the gays but a fallible church. Never been to Ghana but once knew a priest from there and Brother Stephen’s been. He said their services were still nicely high and many churches still treasured their English Missals. Solution: African ordinariates? I imagine there might be enough residual ACism in South Africa (where ACs and the British in general opposed apartheid — as many readers know, I was acquainted with a priest who was kicked out of the South African territory of Namibia in the ’60s... Brother says a young Fr Tutu used to pray the Rosary at demonstrations) to make it so. Reminds me a bit of another West African ex-colony now a country, Gabon, where Lefebvre served as Archbishop of Dakar (Senegal like Gabon was in French West Africa) and was so liked that the SSPX have a following there. Photo: Canon Victor Leon Acquaye in Ghana.
  • Brother Stephen taught me of a bygone lay ministry in churches (like beadles and the people collecting pew fees): dog-whippers! Not because churches had anything against dogs but quite the opposite. I shouldn’t forget that dogs in church were quite common in the day and that one of the things that shocked Muslims about Christian churches was that dogs ran free in them. Which of course caused problems, hence this ‘venerable ecclesiastical office’. Bowrr!
From @TAC
  • Is Pakistan killing our troops?
  • The answer is right in front of you. Perhaps if the Left can cross the Rubicon and start believing they can make more of a difference at the courthouse, rather than continually organizing marches on Washington D.C. – or thinking that they someday will control the center (which they won’t) – they might find it more productive and rewarding and also be joined by libertarians and conservatives who feel the same way. Then we can truly have a two-party system pitting the center of power against everyone else.
  • Wikileaks and our weak-kneed Congress except Kucinich and Paul.
  • Courage at 10 Downing. Britain’s newly elected Conservative prime minister, David Cameron, has just described Gaza – under Israel’s control – as an open air “prison camp”, and sharply criticized Israel’s attack on the Turkish organized humanitarian-aid flotilla. Who will be the first neocon to complain about British “surrender monkeys”? First commenter to guess correctly wins a small prize.
  • Reading the tea leaves. So much potential but the red-state fascism is a problem. A lion’s share of GOP congresspeople with Tea Party ties signed on to an idiotic resolution endorsing an Israeli military strike on Iran.
  • If certain Tea Partiers and Tea Party groups have come under fire for alleged racism, it may be due to the fact they’ve couched their opposition to the Obama Administration personally. They don’t just oppose the Administration, they oppose the man himself. This is what happens when persons, especially on the Right, still believe in the Cult of the Presidency.
Islam may not be a cult but cult-like Islam is flourishing
Writes Damian Thompson
My rough and ready definition of a typical cult involves a charismatic leader, radical teachings that tend to alienate adherents from their friends and families, and therefore a high degree of tension between the group and the surrounding environment.
Yes but be careful: Matthew 10.
But some of this applies to Benedictine monasteries and the Church of England’s Alpha Course, too, so let’s not get too holier-than-thou about cults. Also, cult-like behaviour needn’t be overtly religious at all: think of the gurning faces of the bedsit activists trying to sell you Trotskyist newspapers on Tottenham Court road, or the Buddha-like gaze of the woman from HR as she repeats the company mantras.
Puppets of doom
More from me on this sort of thing. From the MCJ.

I have become uncomfortably numb
By Cindy Sheehan

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

On the Modernists’ Jesus
Well, the comments on the article are certainly interesting. And they quickly get to the heart of the doctrinal unraveling that’s occurring in many churches today. For my own part, I can’t see the point. The pithy sayings of a long-dead carpenter from Roman-occupied Palestine are perhaps interesting as a historical curiosity, but nothing more. I certainly wouldn’t want to base my life on what he said, did, or recommended for others.
Why being pro-life is a Catholic thing
From Hilary
The spy who may have helped take down Communism
From Taki
US Treasury is running on fumes
From CounterPunch
The lament psalms and the reality of a disordered life
From Incarnatus est
Six ancient beliefs that turn out to be true
Get past the attitude and it’s OK. From Cracked.
The right’s foreign-policy consensus is built on illusions
“Neglected democratic allies” is just a dog-whistle version of “Democrats don’t applaud everything Likud does hard enough, therefore they hate Israel.”
From Daniel Larison.

Стыдно! (Shameful!)
An Orthodox parish should not rent its hall, and certainly not weekly, to liberal dissenting RCs no matter how much it needs the money. (At least it’s not renting them the church, which is forbidden.) The Episcopalians do that or give them the use of the church or hall gratis.
Perhaps we might even discuss faith matters with some of those Catholics who do not follow the Ritus Narcissus.
There you go! The ones who look and sound like your few Western Rite brethren.

From Owen.
I don’t necessarily miss these things but I remember
As much as I like the trappings and ethos of the past
I remember when you had to actually go to the bank, during opening hours, and take this thing they used to give you, called a “passbook” that had your account transactions written into it. When you wanted money, you took this passbook into your branch, and only your branch, and got money out by talking to the guy at the counter and signing a little bit of paper. If the bank was closed, you had to wait until tomorrow.

When you paid bills, you wrote a thing called a “cheque” and put it in an envelope and into the post box and then subtracted the amount of the cheque from your cheque book. This was called “balancing your chequebook”.

But that was in the days when money was a Real thing.

It was also when people watched this big box thing they had called a “TV set”. You had to change the channel on the “TV Set”, using a kind of dial thingy on the front. You had to get up off the sofa and walk over to the TV set to do this.

It all seemed pretty high tech at the time.
Rather this harkens to the time before this, when money was real. Definitely before 1933 (gold) in the US and arguably before 1968 (silver) and the Nixon Shock in 1971 (the dollar is no longer backed by anything except government promises, ‘full faith and credit’: fiat money). When some of your dollar bills were tradeable at the bank for real money, specie (‘payable to bearer on demand’).

From Hilary.
From RR

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Vs Common knowledge
  • Communist governments killed perhaps a hundred million more people than the Nazis did.
  • Women commit acts of domestic violence at a higher rate than men do.
  • Blacks commit interracial violence at a rate far in excess of their representation in the general population.
  • Sex has a lot to do with rape.
  • Race is a biologically quantifiable reality in addition to something that can be manipulated as a social construct.
  • Black-on-black murders in the USA every year are roughly double the total number of blacks lynched in America throughout history.
  • Islam is far more misogynistic and anti-Semitic than most white male Christians are.
  • There is not a shred of evidence to support the idea of innate cognitive and physical equality between human ethnic groups.
  • Many of the nations that wound up being colonized were not innately peaceful and were only subjugated due to their inferior defensive technology.
  • Collective, intergenerational guilt is a fantasy that doesn’t exist.
Race, Steve Sailer’s bailiwick. Now that’ll get you thrown out of polite society. The theory’s fine; his political solution (write the law to favour some races — apartheid essentially) not. Race is not determinative; only a factor. Individual liberty is race-blind and trumps Sailer’s hatred of Mexicans, which is his problem.

From Taki.
Economic warnings from two respected analysts
From LRC
The end of online anonymity: will you be freaking out?
From Cracked
Wading into the religious message-board swamp for a bit
I know I shouldn’t rattle the online Orthodox’ cages (or mix metaphors) but...
Patrimony: Anglo culture is...
From the British libertarian blogger ‘Tom Paine’ via ‘Nevski’:
... a culture of tolerance, mutual respect, and good humour. A culture which involves profound affection and respect for the language, history, literature and peoples of these (Anglo-Celt) islands (and their colonies). A culture which includes the works of some of the greatest dramatists, novelists and poets the world has ever known. A culture open to new influences while firmly rooted in the history of European Christendom. A culture steeped in the concepts and traditions of the English Common Law. A culture which embraces a spirit of fair play. A culture which involves freedom of speech and thought, and a robustly contemptuous view of all those small-minded individuals who would seek to limit that freedom. A culture which respects its traditions of thought sufficiently NOT to pervert language in order to turn a phrase like “celebrating difference” into a euphemism for “submitting to intolerance”. A culture which is rich and multidimensional and which can neither be defined in few words in a comment box, nor dismissed with a knee-jerk, thoughtless, rant by some semi-educated leftist about “colonialism” and “racism”.
He might have added how the King James Bible and the pre-1970s BCP were models of sacral Christian speech.
Oh, yes. Sonorous, reverent prose, yes; heresy, no, goodbye to all that.
Blooming in July here at Runnemede
Just outside my door



O Lord, how manifold are thy works: in wisdom hast thou made them all; the earth is full of thy riches.

В богатстве живу? Конечно!
Translation: More or less the title of this video

‘Mad Men’ Unbuttoned

The Nashville Teens, ‘Tobacco Road’, 1964
Obviously trying to sound like the Beatles and not doing too bad a job

This is making the rounds of the conservative blogosphere;
I gather I’m expected to hate it...

Later at this convention:

Очень хорошо! (Well done.)
Not a testimonial
Margaret’s well-written conversion story including her background in Anglo-Catholicism; one of the few Orthodox online I can stand because she’s not an ‘online Orthodox’

Make Transdniester part of Russia
It’s what the people there want
From RR
American apocalyptic messianism as disaster porn
From Arturo

Free enterprise vs big government

Monday, July 26, 2010

From CounterPunch
From Ad Orientem

From Stephen Hand
  • ...democracies will change their nature; the quaint old forms — elections, Supreme Courts and all the rest — will remain. The underlying substance will be a kind of non-violent totalitarianism. All the traditional names, all the hallowed slogans will remain exactly what they were in the good old days. Democracy and freedom will be the theme of every broadcast — but democracy and freedom in a strictly Pickwickian sense. Meanwhile the ruling oligarchy and its highly trained elite of soldiers, policemen, thought-manufacturers and mind-manipulators will quietly run the show as they see fit. From Brave New World Revisited.
  • Video: The intégriste Catholic right doesn’t like us. Francoism and Ave Maria, Fla. (the church as Stepford with Tom Monaghan as caudillo?) are orthodox as am I but I’d rather not live there. (Also, when these people — distributists for example — make decent products for the masses at low prices, maybe I’ll listen to their objections to capitalism.) Better schismatic Slavs in steel country (as Ferrara would say), Arturo’s and Samer’s people and Italians’ love/hate relationship with the church (I’m not saying any of these are necessarily right), with a few unpretentious holy people in the mix. Real pre-conciliar life, more or less, not a cult.
What do Gandhi and Mother Teresa have in common with Hitler and Jeffrey Dahmer?
How you think of them all is remarkably similar
Ways your office is killing you
Today’s Cracked hit
David Lindsay on Afghanistan
There are no “Taliban” distinct from the Pashtun as a whole. So we are indeed at war with the schoolchildren, with the police, with the wedding parties, with the pregnant women, with the deaf and dumb, with all of them. That is why we should not be at war at all in Afghanistan, a country wholly unrelated to the 9/11 attacks from Saudi Arabia.
From Joshua
From RR
  • Deep-space camera finds many ‘Earths’. Which suggests exotheology, the possibility of sentient rational life on other worlds as Cardinal Cushing was fascinated with.
  • Bradley Manning’s gift.
  • From a left-libertarian: Catholics, Protestants, Hispanics and gays. Answers: open borders, succeed or fail on merit not race (plus charity not socialism, and in many cases one can go home) and get the state out of the marriage business, then Catholics (including gay Catholics) and homosexualists (including Catholic gays — which is the adjective and which is the noun means something) can get along or at least live in peace. Also, the poll doesn’t surprise me or push me onto the culture-wars bandwagon because I think I understand Bad Catholics: they don’t agree with the church or don’t know better but know enough not to try to change the church.
On ‘Mad Men’ Season 4’s first episode
Another pro-secession piece
From LRC
Sun newspapers in Canada sack Margolis

Sunday, July 25, 2010

And so it begins

Home improvements.

One street over from me. I think this is St Rita of Cascia.

AFAIK unrelated to this afternoon’s severe storm, two units in this building round the corner caught fire.

’58 Bonnie.

Do you know who this ’60s American TV star is?
Orthodox Anglicans urged to hold fast to sound teaching
On one hand, wonderful. On the other, for fairness’ sake this non-clobbering Catholic wants to parse this.
  • Orthodox. It’s great that they happen to agree with us on the creeds and most morals (what about contraception and multiple divorce and remarriage?). But their system (general synod/convention), just like the liberals’, is like a legislature without a constitution checking its power. (Catholicism has a constitution with no repeals: doctrine.) Everything, including what they say scripture says, that is, what’s orthodox, is subject to change by majority vote; the liberals are only farther down a certain path by following this same logic. In a word, Protestant.
  • Anglican. That means ‘recognised as such by the Church of England’ usually in the form of the Lambeth Conference so I don’t think CANA qualifies; the Episcopalians for example do. Much of this fight seems over which side’s bishops will get to meet the Queen every 10 years; like the Commonwealth an emotional/social-status substitute for the British Empire that the British aren’t even that interested in.

700 years of Ruthenian history in 30 seconds
The origin of the people depicted in The Deer Hunter

Photos from here and here.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

It all began in Brooklyn 70 years ago
Buon compleanno, Bob. Molte grazie per tutto. Cent’ anni.
Unconventional director sets Shakespeare play in time and place Shakespeare intended
From The Onion via Mike Russell

The Chap Olympiad

Like America has its golden age, the ’50s (riding the wave of WWII), remembered both cheesily (not the real thing) and à la ‘Mad Men’, England has the ’20s (the last years of empire before WWII killed it): Brideshead Revisited, Merchant-Ivory (who weren’t English but anyway), Anglo-Catholicism (enjoy the new, more grown-up page replacing 10-year-old Web stuff and if you are so moved, please help me by buying a few things... and hooray for patrimony), Patrick & Eugene (channelling Noël Coward) and the original young fogeys. (Not to be confused with most of modern Britain, neither dapper nor religious.) They meet at the Fedora Lounge, appropriately enough, around the ’40s. Among things in common besides almost a common language: hats. Spiffing! Photo gallery.

From Fr L.
War on terror or war of terror?
BTW how’s the war on ennui going? From CounterPunch.
‘But health care is expensive’, you say. It wouldn’t be if the free market were allowed to operate.
From Joshua
From Daniel Larison
Celente says pro-peace populists will break the false left-right paradigm
From LRC

Friday, July 23, 2010

Kucinich and Paul: pull US troops out of Pakistan
From Rod Dreher
More on the decline of old WASPdom
Sure, it had its bad side as we now hear from all sides (part charity/contrition, part social-engineering agenda) — them to Catholics and Jews: ‘This is our country; you’re just visiting’ — but what a swell party it must have been; they had senses of duty and fair play, and got things done right. Of course the well-meant liberalism that did them in isn’t going any time soon. Try bugmenot to read the NYT article. From the Bovina Bloviator.
From David Lindsay
From Joshua
  • On the military and heroes. Again I’m not a pacifist but good points, ones Astore says men who’ve been in combat would agree with (also they tend not to talk about it).
  • The US government, specifically the US military, where the worst of red-state fascism and political correctness come together, or the establishment right and left are Punch and Judy on the hands of the same guy. Like Gen. ‘It’s fun to shoot ragheads and anyway we’re defending women’ Mattis. Play to the right’s chivalry and the left’s self-righteous meddlesomeness.
  • TAC on Obama’s war. More on Mattis and bombing Muslims only p*sses them off. How about quitting all those bases on their holy ground, not propping up Israel any more and returning the military to its true mission of defending people at home? All that stuff bin Laden was talking about. Then get bin Laden for killing nearly 3,000 of our people on our turf.
  • Hooray for cassocks. Tat’s not everything, and as I think Evelyn Waugh wrote, the Protestants can put that on (thus looking like us and RC liberals don’t) like they can maintain from before the ‘Reformation’ or later adopt our beliefs about creed and sacrament, leaving off the bit about an infallible church, but it matters.
From Hilary
  • Stop having ‘casual partners’. Stop. You’re going to die. You’d think that an homosexualist lobby group would be alive to the negative connotations of a name like ‘Outhouse’. I’ll spare you the link.
  • Oh, yeah? Tolerate this.
  • The EU isn’t a Real Thing. It does not concern itself with The Real. It is a body wholly dedicated to the Fantasy that there is (or could be if we just wish hard enough) this state called ‘Europe’ where everyone will live in peace and socialist harmony.
  • Damian is doing a good job keeping track of the blossoming of anti-Catholic bigotry in the build-up to the pope’s visit to Old Blighty. Hands up everyone who thought this papal visit was going to go well... anyone? Bueller?

Top 10 things Time misses about the ‘Mad Men’ era

Which seems to be overtaking ‘Kennedy era’ as the period’s name (HGTVspeak: ‘mid-century’, commonly called the more-or-less ’50s). Interestingly one of them isn’t ‘magazines like Time still seemed to matter and were expected to last for ever’.
When does distrusting the hierarchy become a liability?
When does it stop being a legitimate defence of local immemorial custom (Arturo’s world, Italian and Polish parishes), the good fight of all the would-be St Athanasiuses, and become only congregationalism?
From RR
A matter of sovereignty
From Solomon Hezekiah

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The heresy of exceptionalism
From Solomon Hezekiah
New blog: Anglican Patrimony
Much ado about nothing: Lady Gaga
I admit I like some of her songs; they’re catchy. I also understand the ‘so cons’ (thanks for teaching me that, Joshua) recently were up in arms as is their wont because in her ripping off Madonna’s old (25 years ago!) act she pulled their chains in a music video (they still make those?). I heard the song, ‘Alejandro’, before seeing the offending video and it struck me as so mechanical: just like that cutting-edge ’90s act, Ace of Base! Maybe underneath it all she’s just... boring.

Back to listening to ’40s-early ’60s music.
US has spent $1 trillion on wars since 9/11
Try wrapping your head round that: one trillion. Second only to (adjusted for inflation) WWII. From
Murdoch meets Oprah, kills BeliefNet?
From GetReligion
Theology-exam joke from Fr John via Ref
In three paragraphs or less, please compare and contrast hypoallergenic and hypostasis according to the Klingon Book of Ritual. Please limit your use of the word “phlegm.”
And seriously if you want to be humbled try taking — cold — a used version of the Bible exams that I think would-be PCUSA ministers have to pass (via AKMA). My score’s, er, classified but then again you knew that Catholics don’t know the Bible.