Friday, April 30, 2021

A rare picture of censor-culture Catholics being censored


Yep, that accurately portrays the sudden outrage of having applied to them the very practices they want applied to others; 

Hilarious.  Mark, who has rejoiced time and again when Tech Companies censor conservatives, now gets his underwear in a knot because it happened to one in his circle. Note the appeal to race identity where there is no reason to think race has anything to do with it. There is no human race, there is only the skin color.  Thus says the Left.  Apparently some New Prolife Catholics approve this message. 

Meanwhile Sam, who has been leading a minor crusade against Bishop Baron since the good Bishop called out "wokeness", is equally miffed. .Note Sam's perfect acceptance of 'wokeness', which is essentially liberals punishing and censoring wrong think and silencing dissent ... until it happens to him.  Then he's - wait for it - pissed now!

Bwa ha ha ha!  You don't get better examples of hypocrisy than that, courtesy of two professional representatives of Catholic teaching in modern apologetics.  Of course on a technical level, there's nothing wrong with societies having standards and expecting people to abide by those standards, and even stepping in when people get out of line.  Freedom, after all, does have it's limits.

The problem is, those who embrace the Left are confronted with being the ones who for decades insisted that anyone banning anything, or punishing any artistic expression, or mandating conformity to any speech, were the fascist Nazis.  Trying to square liberalism's great post-war mantra of 'always tolerate freedom of expression' with the current Left invoking a self-righteous intolerance that would shame McCarthy, is one of the big challenges for progressives today. 

This is why I insist we shouldn't say woke.  Call it what it is, little leftwing advocates being the intolerant fundamentalists they so often condemn.  Just without the self-awareness. 

Thursday, April 29, 2021

NPR offers a tough choice

When it comes to understanding race in America, should we listen to a wealthy old white guy, or a black man from Georgia?  Now that's a tough one.  For some odd reason, I can bet just who most liberals will choose to listen to in order to get the best understanding of the plight of the black Americans.  If anything else speaks to  the post-modern, 21st Century mindset more accurately, I'm at a loss to think what it could be. 

I can't account for this

Jeff Goldblum will be doing a Dungeons and Dragons podcast.  The first thing that came to my mind when I saw that was an old headline from the 1990s about Roger Daltrey and Chaka Khan performing Handel's Messiah in Scotland.  I don't know why, but that's what came to my mind.  Anyway, there you have it.  The big pop culture news of the day.  No doubt guaranteed to have higher ratings than this year's Oscars.  

PolitiFact examines Senator Tim Scott's rebutal

I thought we all needed the laugh.  Fact Check sites are quickly becoming the modern equivalent of snake oil salespeople.  It's often good for a laugh to see how they twist and turn and find ways to make sure the other guys can't be entirely right, while making sure our guys weren't completely wrong.  All in all, counting toothpicks is time better spent than caring what the latest modern contribution to silliness has to say.  But again, always good for a laugh.   Those who wish to dissect the selective use of statistics found in the piece are free to do so. 

BTW, bonus points if you notice the dig about Tim Scott being the senate's "lone black republican."  Because of course he is, since there are only three current senators who are black, and two are Democrats.  Unless all there were in the same party, one would have to be the only black senator in one of the parties. Wonder why they put that little bit in there.  

Again, there are fools, and there are those who know better than to trust the laughably titled "Fact Checkers" of today. 

In my Protestant days we called this prooftexting

He's not wrong. If your primary approach to the Faith is condemnation, you're missing something about Jesus' message.  If that's your 'primary' approach.   Nonetheless, there is more to it than that, which is the problem with prooftexting.  After all, most assume if they are condemning something (for instance, BLM or #MeToo or LGBTQ activists), it is because there is a valid reason.  And I'd wager in some cases, Fr. Martin would agree.   


Heh.  Yep.  An age old problem with biblical scholarship and apologetics.  Not bad for arguing on the Internet either. 

ht: Nate Winchester

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Prayers for Deacon Greydanus

I'm highly critical of Deacon Greydanus for several reasons, and rightly so I think.  Both as a movie reviewer and as one making excuses for the inexcusable, I feel he has been tainted by the modern - we'll call it Left - as so many are.  Like many Catholics, he should know better. 

Nonetheless, I saw this today:

Apparently it just happened.  It's tough to lose a loved one, no matter what state of health he is in.  Prayers for the Greydanus family as they move through this time, and prayers for the Deacon.  It isn't easy being in ministry when you're the one suddenly needing ministered to. I know that from experience. 

God's peace and blessings be upon them all.  Eternal rest grant to his father, and let perpetual light shine upon him. 

The missing Covid X-Variable

Can we admit we have no clue about Covid?   There is clearly something missing in the 'how to survive Covid' equation.  We were talking about our governor, Mike DeWine, a couple days ago.  Last year, early in the pandemic, his little Covid dream team came out to explain why the need to do lockdowns and social distancing and masks and all.

One thing DeWine kept bringing up was the early 20th Century's Spanish Flu.  He had little charts showing us all the states that took immediate, and at times draconian, measures to combat the flu, and which ones didn't.  It was a pretty simple chart that showed those states that took action had lower rates of flu deaths, while those that didn't had higher.  Pretty simple stuff.

But here's the problem.  I notice with Covid, there is no such easy chart to plot when it comes to anti-Covid measures and Covid cases and Covid deaths.  States that have instituted draconian measures have, in some cases, led the pack when it comes to deaths and infections and hospitalizations.  On the other hand, some states with the most brutal measures to combat Covid have had much better results.  Same with those states that have maintained loose responses to fighting Covid.  The same goes for countries from what I can tell, but those numbers seem difficult to pinpoint.

In fact, all we need do is look at now.  While more Americans than ever are being vaccinated, the numbers in Covid cases and hospitalizations are rising.  Or so they say.  What's that even mean?  How are the vaccines helping if that is the case?  Or do they say it would be worse if we weren't vaccinated?  That's always an easy claim.  Sure millions died because of this idea we tried, but billions may have died otherwise.  I don't know.  I don't even know how the vaccines help, how often they have to be boosted, and we can't - despite statements to the contrary - know of any long term effects yet. 

And then there is Texas, which sent shockwaves through the media a month or so ago by announcing it would lift all statewide Covid restrictions.  Based on what everyone said, this would usher in a tsunami of Covid cases and restart the entire pandemic.  But last I looked, it appears Texas is actually not seeing the same spikes as other states where restrictions are still quite harsh.

All of this suggests to my layman's eyes that there is something else about Covid we don't know. There is something else that is the real variable showing why people get infected.  A missing information link if you would.  Likewise, there could be other variables behind why some get Covid and never know they had it, others die, and still others are wrecked by debilitating side effects of having the virus.  Granted, not knowing could be a reason to take immediate action, if we knew or could in any way see exactly what actions did what, and which ones worked and which ones didn't. 

Again, we don't know. While there are plenty who no doubt are willing to let millions of lives be ruined so they can stay safe, it becomes troubling when you consider their lives are being ruined for what may prove to be no real purpose.   Not that we should do nothing.  If only 10% of deaths attributed to Covid in the United States were in fact a direct result of Covid, that's still a mighty bad flu season.  Bad enough that the decent thing to do would be do what we can.

But there's a difference between saying do what we can, and mandating controlled responses that have seen skyrocketing drug abuse rates, crime rates, suicide rates, depression rates, not to mention millions of lives thrown upside down.  And we won't even get into the millions of small business owners who don't care about poor people in the third world.  Some of them may never be able to get back on their feet again.  In fact, we may be seeing the first time in which the means to combat an epidemic may cause problems that outlast for years the pandemic they were supposed to fight.  It certainly warrants more of an answer than the usual variations on 'shut up and obey' that we've heard for the last year. 

For a disease that we still clearly know little about, and that has significant variables not accounted for in the calculations about its spread and impact, that begins to be a troubling development.  That despite the gaping holes in our knowledge, we make daily, sometimes contradictory, pronouncements with the assurance of a Jonestown resident.  At least for anyone who doesn't strut under the mantra that there is no end to the suffering and dying I'm willing to allow so that I may be safe and happy, that should be a troubling observation. 

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

A happy and blessed Holy Week to my Orhtodox brethren

 A nifty treasure map for the occasion

Nobody does Christian preparation like the Orthodox.  Their fasts were the stuff of legend, and rightly so.  As my sons said, the best way to live up to their often months long fasts was to open the door and graze on the grass in the front yard.  In fact, one of the problems with Eastern Orthodoxy was just how surprisingly cultural it was.  For us Westerners, those fasts were nigh on impossible.  But they were not for people in parts of Eastern Europe and the Middle East, where the fasts tend to align more closely to the daily diets and menus of the average population.  

That was, in fact, one of the surprising things we discovered in the half decade or so in which we sojourned with the Orthodox side of the tracks.  Here in our Western lands, even our dying, anti-Christian Western lands, we still have a semblance of the Christian Faith's long shadow.  Many of the things we take for granted are rooted in eons of Christian influence.  There is also a sort of give and take with certain cultural tendencies that found their way into the Church.  

So when we see something like Orthodox Christianity, more or less divorced from any noticable Western influence, we have a tendency of saying 'Ooooo, Ahhhhh, look how otherworldly and not-conformist it is.'  Well, here in the States it can look that way.  But in their own back yard, turns out their churches are just as linked to the cultural heritage of those countries and lands as a Baptist tent revival is with good old 19th Century Americana. 

Nonetheless, a heartfelt wish for a blessed Holy Week.  Orthodoxy, like all faith traditions, is under the same assault as the faithful in the Dying West.  In some ways, the lessons they learned under centuries of Ottoman, Muslim and later Communist oppression have given them a different take on some of these problems.  Nonetheless, the sudden burst of openness and freedom that came with the collapse of the USSR has also exposed them to unique dangers that they are now only beginning to confront.  So prayers and best wishes through this Pascha season.

Christ is Risen!

(to which we all respond, Truly He is Risen!)

Khristós anésti! Alithós anésti!

al-Masīḥ qām! Bi-l-ḥaqīqati qām! 

Khristos voskrese! Voistinu voskrese!

(for those in our former church)

Armenian Genocide: Another perspective

An interesting perspective.  The boys and I were talking about Biden's decision to label the massacre of the Armenian Christians a genocide.  As I said, I think he was right to do this.  But the point was brought up - was it right for that one word to be that important? 

That is, notice how everything hung on whether or not a single word was applied to this or not.  Not that hanging things on a single word isn't important.  That's why we have the right to happiness and not property in the Declaration of Independence.  Because haggling over words matters.

But what is it that says calling it genocide makes it somehow more important, or worse, than simply a massacre of over a million human beings?  Is that good that we are told being a genocide, meaning there was a particular reason a million humans were killed, is the important thing?

From there, the boys mused about hate crimes and racist crimes and cop killings.  They noted that mentality is there in those phrases, in smaller form.  In fact, hate crime is merely for individuals what genocide is for larger groups.  It's an alarm bell to say 'this killing is in fact worse than that killing', while 'this massacre is worse than that one over there because it was a genocide' is, apparently, proper thinking. 

Words do matter. It might also matter why words matter, and that some words matter may not be a good thing.  If we're by some stealth manner beginning to sanction the idea, once again, that the killing of certain people is worse than the killing of others, perhaps we're going in the wrong direction. 

How did BLM become a thing? Because we decided it's worse if some Americans are killed by police than other Americans killed by police.  How?  Because we needed the word - racist- attached to make it worse. From there, we now know that to say All Lives Matter can only be a racist tactic, and most certainly wrong.  This goes a long way toward suggesting, however subtly, that it isn't as bad when those others are killed by the police. Or that millions of Ukrainians killed isn't as bad because it isn't a real genocide like the Holocaust.  Which might be why everyone in the world knows of the Holocaust, and so few know of the Holodomor (which, unlike Holocaust, trips a spelling error here on Blogger). 

Monday, April 26, 2021

Salvation through vaccination

Or Franciscan University blasphemes the gospel of STEM.  At least supposedly. At least Franciscan University - a much loathed and hated university among the always enlightened and tolerant Catholic Left and former conservatives - declined to have the university host a vaccine site.  

We know this is bad because since then, dozens of positive Covid cases have occurred.  This wouldn't have happened if they had offered the vaccine site.  We know that because more and more people than ever have been vaccinated while Covid rates have been on the rise.  That, however, is due to variants in the Covid virus, which seem either to be addressed by the vaccines or not addressed.  In any event, we know the vaccines are doing their job because rates were alternately rising and shrinking before the vaccines, unlike now when they have been steadily rising. 

Which is why everyone should be vaccinated, so we can get back to almost normal.  Though we may still need to social distance, avoid non-BLM mass gatherings, and perhaps continue to wear face masks.  This being because not everyone has been vaccinated, or perhaps we may still need to anyway.  

Nonetheless, vaccines obviously work and they are completely safe.  There were a couple cases of blood clots in women that may be linked to the vaccines but those are the only problems.  Oddly enough, in our family we personally know three individuals who had severe reactions not connected to having received the vaccines, including one elderly woman who had to be rushed to the emergency room, again in no way connected to the vaccination she received. So it's appalling that Franciscan University hates Science.  

For our part, we haven't been vaccinated.  That's because we're frothing at the mouth, anti-Science, anti-Vaccers.  Or, it's because after we watched the elderly lady rushed to the ER - the mother in law of a doctor who went to our former church no less - we reasoned my own Mom, at the tender age of 90 and, while healthy, not up to fending off what that woman went through, might not fare so well. 

In addition, owing to his white privilege, my oldest son still lives with us while going through college,.  He can't have the vaccinations because at least one of the vaccines could kill him, since he developed a fatal seafood allergy not related to the flu vaccine he received weeks before developing the allergy out of the blue.  While we only know of one Covid vaccine brand for sure that could kill him, we're not sold on the idea that other vaccines addressing the same problem could be any safer.

Since that's two who live with us who don't feel comfortable getting the vaccine for the sake of their health, we've concluded that, as of now, the rest of us getting the vaccine won't help, unless we throw the other two out on the street or lock them in the attic.  

True, we could just get them anyway, since except for six women with blood clots, not a single serious reaction has been documented.  But again, we're till waiting to see.  Dr. Pope Francis has said we should, and I know that carries more weight than Franciscan University.  After all, as Bill Nye has shown us all, to have any degree or classes in any science discipline is to be an expert in them all. 

Nonetheless, despite it all, we're still waiting and seeing.  Why Franciscan University did what it did I don't know, but I'm sure the reasons were most evil.  That's because anyone who questions the vaccines or fails to conform 100% to the latest demands of the Experts can only be both stupid and the most reprehensibly evil.  And that, kids, is what's called smart thinking in the 21st Century. 

The Problem with Jim Caviezel

Ah, I remember the hazy, crazy days of my entrance into the Catholic Church, when Mr. Caviezel was quite the guy.  He's the one who portrayed Jesus in The Passion of the Christ.  You remember.  That was one of the early shots across the bow that this Western Christian heritage rubbish would no longer be tolerated in our godless, post-Christian era. 

Really.  If you recall, attempts to have the movie banned from American theaters were launched.  Even before the production was finished it was being called racist.  News outlets featured copious interviews with Rabbis who told us how wrong Christianity had always been.  I remember one even suggesting the Cross is a symbol of hate for many Jews.  Can't figure that line of thinking will go anywhere.  Meanwhile some liberal Protestant denominations openly voiced the same reservations about a Jesus movie that didn't feature messianic visions of gay sex with the apostles.  One went so far as to officially call the New Testament a form of Nazi propaganda. 

Yeah, it was all back then during that time.  But when I came into the Church, the majority of Catholic bloggers I stumbled across were quite the Passion/Caviezel fans.  Now?  Now it's this, from everyone's favorite Catholic Deacon and post-modern Film Critic, the one and only Deacon Greydanus:

Woof.  Pretty brutal stuff.  Note how he adds that Caviezel and also Gibson (important to throw in there),  were the most 'incoherent' interviews he ever did.  I wonder if he ever pointed that out back when he did the interviews.  Hmmmm.  Here is an interview he had with Gibson in 2016 at a conference in which he describes Gibson's answers as 'succinct' and 'provocative'.  Here are his initial thoughts on The Passion as well.  Nothing about incoherent that I'm seeing.  Maybe he did say that about an interview back when it happened, but I was unable to find it.  

Anyhoo. I do admit there is a problem.  Caviezel, like anyone with brains and a heart and soul, sees the terror on the horizon.  He no doubt sees the blasphemies, lies, racism, slaughter (1.5 billion abortions in a half century - well done women's rights activists!), the iconoclasm, the oppression, the duplicity, the corruption, the elitism, the classism, the coming tyranny and the general assault on everything good that came from the last 3000 years of Judeo-Christian civilization.

Problem is, there is no way your voice will be heard today if you notice these things.  The press has long died and is now in full blown, full frontal activist propaganda mode for the secular leftwing.  It doesn't even pretend anymore.  You would have to be the 'what camps in the German woods?' level of deniers to say anything else. If you can in any way challenge these things, expect to be shut out by the press and censored by the tech giants. 

Likewise in Weinstein era Hollywood, most of the Entertainment Industry is at the beck and call of the new secular leftwing socialist movement.  Our colleges and  public educators are more or less thralls of  the leftwing.  Only recently, corporate America and our fine industrial and business leaders realized there's more money in the destruction of the Christian West than in its preservation.  Heck, even most religious traditions are, to one extent or another, right there.  That includes leaders of the same Christian Faith that helped build the values and morals now under attack. 

So, for instance, a vast conspiracy like Black Lives Matter, which has taught the aforementioned industries and institutions to condemn anyone who says all human lives matter (well done that), is easily dismissed with actual facts.  Multitudes of statistics have been shown to prove the BLM narrative is on shaky ground at best, outright false at worst. 

And yet from the United Nations to the Pope to almost every government on the planet, to our tech industries and social media providers, to our schools, colleges, our corporations, churches, movies, television shows, news outlets and rock bands - everyone preaches the gospel of BLM as if it is as true as anything that ever came from the mouth of Christ.  The same goes for whatever the media experts happen to say about Covid on any given day.  The same goes for Climate Change.  Immigration.  Gun control.  You name it.  If it's a leftwing narrative, or if it glorifies the 90 foot Left, you can bet 90% of the world's leadership and power players, and half the population of us little people, will be in lockstep with the latest pronouncements.  Even if they contradict yesterday's pronouncements. 

Because of that massive deck stacked against those who see what is happening and have not yet donned their merry Rolfs, there is a tendency to then grab and run with anything and everything under the sun that purports to notice the same storm clouds.  No matter how false.  No matter how looney. No matter how unproven. 

I won't say this is bad because it makes anyone fighting New Mordor look bad.  Dissenters will be mocked and ridiculed because their dissent exposes the obvious, and the disciples of the Left can't have that.  No, it's not good because you don't want to be as bad as what you're fighting.  If you go after this or that conspiracy theory*, then you are on shaky grounds when condemning all those who accept such unversaially accepted conspiracy theories like BLM, #MetToo, Transphobia, or whatever.  

Best to let your yes be yes and no be no.  Best to stand on the Faith, the solid rock, and at the foot of the Cross.  Preach Christ and Him crucified.  Visit the widow and orphan and whatever you do, avoid being tainted by the stains of the world.  Remember to call good good and evil evil.  After all, as we see here, one of the most important demands on those who would align with this rising shadow is that they must unequivocally call good, or at least excuse, what they once condemned, and condemn everything and everyone they once called good. If anything shows who is on the wrong side of history, it would be that. 

*Until there is actual evidence, it remains a conspiracy theory.  However many accept it is not evidence, as transgender normality or BLM demonstrate. 

Sunday, April 25, 2021

My Sunday wish for the Catholic Church

Is that it would start converting the world to the Gospel of Jesus Christ instead of trying to mold the Church into merely a Catholic version of the world.  

That's all. 

 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. John 10.16

For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, but lose his soul?  Mark 8.36

Saturday, April 24, 2021

Good for President Biden

Under the credit where it is due category, President Biden has declared the Armenian genocide an actual genocide.

True, my sons point out that this has been a bone of contention in not a few of their public school and college classes.  Most of their professors/teachers have long embraced the idea that America was one long, sad tale of genocide, slavery and racist evil.  Tales of billions of happy indigenous peoples living in paradise being slaughtered in one genocidal massacre after another is the best way to sum up their history lessons.  The flagship example of this always being the Trail of Tears.

Problem is, you can't call the the Trail of  Tears, or other events in America's history of slaughter, a genocide and insist what happened to the Armenians wasn't.  The Trail of Tears was a much smaller and more limited event compared to the Armenian slaughter. So continuing to quibble over whether that was really a genocide or not made it darn difficult to label the West's move into the New World as genocide. 

So with this, expect the gloves to come off altogether. Or so my boys suppose.  That doesn't mean it's wrong for Biden to call a spade a spade.  Doing the right thing for the right reason is the only acceptable way to do things.  But if the right thing is done, even for the wrong reason, at least that's something.  And it honors the victims of one of the last century's first, and most brutal, mass killings. 

BTW, here's a nice example of how people in the world approach topics like this.  Notice the 'their hands weren't always clean, but certainly this was bad.'  You would see nothing like that in a treatment of European or American driven anything, much less genocide. 

Friday, April 23, 2021

Who is this guy?


Geesh.  If a priest said something that dismissive about Jews because they were Jews, I wouldn't want him at my parish.  If a priest said something that dismissive about blacks because they are black, I wouldn't want him at my parish.  If a priest said something that dismissive about Hispanics, Muslims, Buddhists, homosexuals, women, atheists, or any children of God, I wouldn't want him at my parish.  The same goes for saying something that dismissive about my sons simply because of their skin color, even if it happens to be the priest's skin color as well. Evil doesn't stop being evil because I say it about my own, even if it's what all the people at the best Hollywood parties with T&A say I should. I'm thankful, no matter what problems my parish has, that as of now, it has no priest like that. 

Thursday, April 22, 2021

What Greta Thunberg is not

Despite the local morning news leading with the story that '18 year old activist and climate change expert Greta Thunberg...', as far as I know, she is not an expert.  If she is, I'd like someone to define expert.  My hunch is that, like the term science, it now means falling into lockstep behind leftwing narratives and agendas and talking points. 

Each day I'm more and more convinced that there are three types of people, yes there are four.  There are fools, liars, thralls and those who know better than to listen to anything that is reported by the modern propaganda ministry formerly known as the news media. 

FWIW, here's my take on young miss Thunberg and the rise of MMGW fortunate sons (and daughters). In fairness, climate change is only latest in a growing number of crusades embarked upon by well to do activists willing to let others suffer and pay the price for the cause.   

David French is wrong, wrong, wrong

Don't get me wrong in saying that.  Mr. French strikes me as a pretty clever fellow.  But he is as wrong as wrong can be:

Critical Race Theory is simply racism repackaged.  You don't flirt with it or try to unpack the positives. Any more than you say, "Yes, but he did help the economy."  It's the Left's greatest 'you have heard liberals say, but the left now says' tricks.  For decades following WWII, racism was very simple: you judged people based on their skin color.  Simple stuff.  You fought racism by learning to judge people not by the color of their skin, but rather by the content of their character.  Again, simple stuff.

Starting in the 1970s, there were some kooks and lily white Pharisees running around insisting the real definition of racism can ever and only include white Americans who weren't as righteous and awesome  as they were.  Likewise, by the late 80s when I was in college, I remember some black activists speaking at campus who were warming to the idea that racism can only be on whites, so hating whites if you're not white can therefore never be racism. Nonetheless, as a society we continued to chug along under the idea that there is no race but the human race, we're all the same under the skin, and it's wrong to size people up based on skin color, ethnicity, national origin, or a host of other accidents of birth.

But again, demonstrating the owner of media brainwashing, we have said that such post war era was wrong, and the only logical solution to racism is to size people up by their skin color, ethnicity, national origin, or a host of other accidents of birth.  Which is impressive.

After all, Americans who accepted Jim Crow were born into a time where blacks had been thought of poorly for centuries.  Germans in 1930s Germany were embracing an anti-Semitism with roots going back thousands of years.  But this is brand-spanking new.  This is over night.  What makes you think that the ones embracing this new incarnation of old racism would have done any different in the American south a hundred years ago, or Germany in the 1930s?

But such is life and such is humanity.  I think I realize now what Jesus meant when He continually pointed out that final judgment was going to be replete with words like few when it comes to who will be saved.  After all, the tendency of humanity to embrace the broad way that leads to destruction seems to be in our bloodstream.  And nothing more than the sudden push to go back to judging based on skin color should demonstrate this.

Oh, and the same goes for vaccines.  In October, Trump was threatening the world by trying to ramrod vaccines for political gain.  Two days after the election, a vaccine was announced and we were saved!  I you believe that, meet me in Brooklyn. 

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Ah Ohio

They say if you don't like the weather in Ohio, just wait a few minutes.  Case in point:

This morning at 9:00 AM looking down the street:

This afternoon at 3:00 PM looking down the same street:

Yep.  Nothing says Ohio weather better than this. :) 

Now this was funny

 A Hungarian artists plays with our movie memories.  My favorite was this one:

Click here to see the rest. 

Why listening to gun control advocates can be difficult

In one easy post.  Normally I try to avoid the old 'this person said stupid lies on the Internet, that proves his whole group is just as bad' arguments.  It's easy, especially in the Internet age, to hunt down some radical, extreme, looney, wacked out or evil statement or position by someone, and then use it to tar and feather that group I don't like.  I prefer to focus on larger trends that are found in important outlets such as mainstream media, or church leadership, or college policy and academics, or politicians or the like. 

Nonetheless, the saddest thing about Mark's post isn't the misrepresentation of gun rights advocates and their positions.  Nor is it the fact that it's all designed to avoid the obvious problem in our society, that a nation dedicated to turning its citizens into nihilistic, drugged up, sexed up narcissists who think the world should worship them and F-you if you don't, might have a few ill side effects along the way.  After all, violence has spiked in our area over the last year and not a single gun law has changed during that time. 

The saddest part is that his is par for the course for most modern gun control advocacy.  Whether the national stage or here in our local neck of the woods, too many who advocate for 'sensible' gun legislation sound like Mark.  Oh, they may not sound as horrible as that stream of rage and word vomit, but the essence of what they say is seldom far from his post.  That makes any discourse impossible, no matter what the cause. 

For instance, I'm the last one to say the 2nd Amendment is carte blanche to own your own piece of artillery or .50 caliber machine gun.  I also think there should be mandatory training for gun ownership (those old militiamen of ancient days would have used their guns for survival and known how to properly handle them).  In addition, I think there is nothing wrong with saying different such qualifiers should be applied based on the type of arms you want.  After all, just because I have a divers license doesn't mean I can drive a semi truck or a tanker with hazardous material.  In fact, I would consider anything that didn't compromise the right of lawful citizens and could be shown to curb violence. 

Nonetheless, I can't have a conversation because the majority of gun control advocacy is in line with what we see in Mark's post.  It is a never ending stream of bilge, often based on falsehoods or outright lies, not to mention personal attacks and endless accusation*.  Often it is based on clear and obvious ignorance of the issue in question.  How often do gun control advocates, including those in the media, say wrong things about the very guns they are wanting to control?  

The saddest part is that Mark's  rant, packed with all those false premises and misrepresenting the opposition, goes a long way toward shutting down any debate at all, even debate that could lead to solutions.  If he really wanted to move forward with gun control, he would try to find those who support gun rights and find middle ground, extending the olive branch and all.  I'm sure some gun rights advocates could never be reached, but others could.  But not by screeds like that. 

Truth be told, however, Mark's post, like many gun control arguments, appears to exist in order to avoid the herd of elephants in the room.  That is, from the 1950s to the 1980s, our nation underwent a major revision of multiple aspects of our society, from mental health to morals and values, and by the 1980s, the regular mass shootings began.  If all we do is say, guns, Guns, GUNS, we go a long way toward saying we don't care about the problem at all.  In fact, more and more I'm convinced the focus on guns is merely a separate agenda being used in order to avoid critiquing this nation that so many supporters of gun control have spent decades building. 

*Note also that Mark joins the modern poo-pooing of the idea that our nation's official rejection of God has anything to do with our nation's problems.  The modern Christian notion that the Christian Gospel affords nothing special for a society goes a long way toward convincing moderns that the Gospel therefore affords nothing special for an individual either. 

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

The trial, the decision

All I can say is I hope justice was done.  There appeared to be no talk about actual racism in the verdict, unless I'm missing something.  But I suppose hoping for justice is what I can do.  Unlike President Biden, I wasn't there and didn't hear everything.  I only heard what the press told me, which is a short way of saying I know less than Sgt. Schultz about the trial.  

Is it easy to charge forth and declare an affront to justice, say the system is rigged, and demand anything and everything be thrown out the window?  Yeah.  That's easy.  That happens now any time a decision we don't like is reached.  Half of the BLM premise is based on the idea that the system is rigged.  Whether this does anything to help that assumption remains to be seen.  But unless I want a decision I support next time to be attacked and undermined, I had best behave myself now. 

The verdict is in.  Derek Chauvin has the right to appeal, and I imagine he will.  I know I would.  I'm sure guilt or innocence does not have much to do with whether one appeals or not.  But for at least a moment, our nation was spared a round of death, violence, destruction and assaults.  No spilling over into destroying our art, our memorials, our public buildings, our religious art the way we saw last year.  For a moment at least. 


Friday, April 16, 2021

Of slippery slopes

So a few years back, heading into 2020, my boys and I were talking about this and that and why it looked as if the West, if not already dead, was in historical hospice.  I began a long tirade on all the things I remember growing up and how things changed.  It was mostly for humor and for laughs, but to make a point. 

It wasn't a doctoral thesis, and it was not meant to be a comprehensive examination of the way the world really was working at any given time.  Instead, it was the things I remembered, things that made the headlines that adults, or later I, talked about.  It was, to paraphrase Peggy Noonan, the cultural ocean in which I was swimming.  

It was a list of things that were assumptions, and new or accepted narratives; things that were the topic of debate on news casts or interviews with Dick Cavett.  They were what music addressed or what teachers talked about or what professors pounded the desk over when preaching to the captive audience.  It was the 60 Minutes special or what Tip O'Neal was lamenting on Phil Donahue.  In short this was a list of those things that caught my ears, eyes and mind because they were big landmarks, road signs if you would, what everyone was talking about, that caught my attention and, in hindsight, were pointing us to where we got.

After our talk, I jotted down the things I remembered saying, with reduced quips to account for my thoughts on each of these social developments that happened during my fifty years on this sod.  I then promptly forgot about it, as I had written it out at the bottom of a document I saved and then moved to some folder somewhere. 

Well, I opened that folder today just to check on something and, voila!, there was the list.  Given that most now are admitting that the war is over and the Christian West, and United States, have lost, I notice many trying to piece together just what went wrong.  I'm not saying my list comes from stone tablets or Delphi, but it does make me think as I go over these big changesand developments as I remember them.  Enjoy.

(BTW, I marked some with asterisks at the time and don't know why, but my guess is, looking at them, they're ones I think were particularly devastating to the preservation of the Democratic and Christian values of my childhood).  


A new Decade: Father Knows Best and a last grasp at the fading heritage of the Christian West

Cultural Revolution: Refabricating American morality down to the foundations

Feminist movement: beyond equal rights, toxic feminism rises – burn those bras!

[Christian] Religion out of Schools: Christian roots eradicated officially, Thanks SCOTUS

*Multicultural Education begins: Demonizing the West, Deifying the non-West

Sexual Revolution: Rules for sex you say?  Just rip off the clothes, get high and laid, what could go wrong?

Civil Rights legislation: Righting old wrongs, not a universal application; Replacing N-word with WASP  

Counter Culture Hippies: the new kindness with love and peace and flowers in our hair

Manson, Altamont and Kent State (‘74): The hippie era crashes and burns

Live and let live: who can say what is normal?

Gay is OK: speaking of normal, if someone wants to be gay, let them



*Roe v. Wade: The Nazis were right – human life is subjective, Thanks SCOTUS  

Watergate: End to faith in American politics, also a new political trick for losers

Roots (Miniseries): America and Slavery are one

The Holocaust (Miniseries): The West and Racism are one

Norman Lear and the TV Revolution: Father knows nothing, liberalism is everything

Liberation Theologies ascendant: God’s principles depend on who you are and who you can blame

The Battle for the Bible: The last gasp of that old time religion  

*New Math and New Education: It’s been working for decades, let’s change everything!

Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee (Book): America and Genocide are one

*American ‘Genocide Beneficiaries’: Freedom, liberty and democracy? No, racism, genocide, and slavery 

Carter and the Iran Hostages: A weakening America

Carter and the Economic Collapse: Sadly, America’s best days are in the past

Economic doldrums: It’s hurting others and that means it’s hurting me

Pope John Paul II: Reining in Vatican II, Calling out evil of the 20th Century Secularism

Margaret Thatcher: Stand up to Communism

The New Ice Age: It’s getting colder, we’re all going to die!

*Disco Ducks: Sex, porn, drugs: Grab all the T&A you want boys and girls! It’s everywhere!

It is Space Invaders!: A new form of entertainment

Rehabilitate, Rehabilitate, Rehabilitate: After all, there aren’t criminals, just victims of an evil society

Solidarity and Soviet invasions: The Iron Curtain begins to tear  



MAGA and Reagan: Best days are yet to come  

*Values based education: Affirm a child’s self-affirming self-affirmation of self-affirming self

The Moral Majority: pre-Communist America’s last, vain gasp

The Day After (television movie):Wasn’t Reagan supposed to nuke the world?

VCRs: Now we can see what Mom and Dad were watching! Over and over and over again

NOW and the radical feminists: Lose in Washington, but let’s rethink this rehabilitate thing for rape

Remember the Victims: Maybe saying ‘Jesus’ out loud might trigger a victim of the West’s evils

MTV: bring the T&A into every living room and reach the youngest of these

AIDS: A minor misstep in the Sexual Revolution (36 million dead = minor misstep) , but choosing gay?

Economic recovery:  Let’s not forget those who are left behind

Put an end to WASP America: America has no right to have a common (WASP) culture

Pluralism, diversity and tolerance: The holy trinity of liberal values

Born this way: Apparently being gay is something you're born with, but this time it's great

Moral Relativism ascendant: It’s not right or wrong, it’s opinion (except where liberalism says so)

The Great White Guilt: Without the White West there would be no problems in the world

Beginning of Wage Stagnation: Many reasons, but the Post War dream is beginning to wane

Geneva and Gorbachev: Reagan and Gorbachev bring hope that it might end peacefully  

Women going into workplace at record levels: But who is home with the kids?

*Latchkey Kids: Apparently nobody is home with the kids

Christmastime and Wintertime: Isn’t Christianity and the Holocaust a thing? Maybe we’ll do winter instead

Born this way and Gay Marriage: Gay is like being black, and blacks can marry can’t they?

Berlin Wall Falls: Against all hope



Debate over Daycare – kids raised by preschool?: Yes there actually was a debate about its effectiveness

Cold War ends: Now what? – a generation lost in space

The Clinton Era: A minority vote and a shiftless president

Rush Limbaugh: Escaping a homogenous media culture’s grasp: what happened to diversity and pluralism?

Out of the Closet: To oppose homosexuality is some phobic racist Nazi thing, right?

Post-Competition and Failure in schools: Isn’t giving an ‘F’ sort of mean and not affirming Suzie?

The Tech boom and Microsoft: A computer on every coffee table, there to think for you

BC/BCE:  Hmmm, maybe ‘Before Christ’ could trigger someone, let’s just act like it never happened

Political Correctness: A new spin on an old idea – how dare you insult liberal ideals!

Internet: Look what we can find! Woohoo!

The Religious Right: To lead, and later to follow, the World for Christ

The Religious Left:  Really.  Who cares?

Sexual predators: Rehabilitate?  Are you crazy? This could be the unforgivable sin!

Post-Nationalism:  Weren’t nations a drag, maybe we just need a single world order

Global Warming: It’s getting hotter, we’re all going to die!

American Exceptionalism repacked: America was always exceptional, exceptionally evil that is!

Oklahoma City and Matthew Shepherd: Fear the Right and Fear the Conservative – it’s all their fault

Hate Crimes: It’s not raping a woman that matters, it’s why you raped which woman that matters



9/11 Attacks: What Japan had hoped Pearl Harbor would be

The Catholic Church’s darkest hour: Not just abuse, but abuse of precious children systemically covered up

The Catholic Church’s darkest hour: What? Mostly homosexual encounters?  Not sure that matters

War on Terrorism and Iraq: An ill-fought war orchestrated by empty suits and post-principled leaders

The Bush Era: The end of the Conservative Coalition

High Speed Internet: Look what we can find … again, and again, and again!

Open Doors for Illegal Immigration: Apparently America’s poor suddenly don’t exist

Social Media: For all those without the courage to be bullies face to face  

Global Climate Change: Well, everything that happens with the weather proves we’re all going to die!

Apple and the Smart Phones: All those fun Internet things – in the palm of your other hand

The Great Recession: Have our priorities gone the wrong direction?  Nah!

Barrack Obama: Time to put America’s racist past behind us?  Not so fast …   



Governing by Phone and Pen: Only racists worry about the racist Constitution anyway

An Anemic Economic Recovery: At least I’m doing OK, so what’s the problem?

An Anemic Economic Recovery: Sure some are falling through the cracks … that’s the price we have to pay

STEM reborn: Only STEM can save us now

Gay Marriage Legal: Turns out we will be punished for opposing gay marriage, Thanks SCOTUS

Pope Benedict Out/Pope Francis In: Vicar of Christ for Hire: Let’s get a Liberation Theologian

The Obama Doctrine: We’re sorry America existed – growing numbers in the world approve this message

Post-Gender: Boys and Girls exist? The very thought should be punishable

Digital Revolutions: Who needs real people when I have my apps?

Racial tensions reborn: Turns out racism is the sin Jesus can’t forgive, and Obama’s presidency proves it!

Post-Confederacy: The South was America’s Nazi Party – the taint is all consuming

Post-Constitution: Who needs it when it was a slave document by genocidal racist white guys?   

Ferguson: You have killed our dozens, but we have killed our tens of thousands … you’re the problem!

Suicides, depression, drugs spiking: Nah, we couldn’t have done anything wrong as a society

Donald Trump: The Left’s gloves come off and we see the brass knuckles

The post-News Media: Must we even pretend to be objective anymore?

Back to Global Warming (mostly): This is it, we must save the wealthy from some future disaster!

The Francis Doctrine: We must realize traditional Christians are the problem and economics is the answer

The Cis White Male: Take Nazi speeches, scratch out ‘Jew’, replace with ‘White’ (or cis, or male)

White Evangelicals: Take Nazi speeches, scratch out ‘Jew’, replace with ‘White Evangelical’

#MeToo: Isn’t guilt based largely on who you are and who is accusing you?

#MeToo2: Who told you to grab all the T&A you wanted (men only)? That’s rape!

Hate Speech is not Free Speech: Remember I’m awesome, I’m sure it will only be them who are censored

Whoever said Pluralism, diversity and tolerance?:  Certainly not liberals, apparently ever, so say millennials 



Monday, April 12, 2021

As if on cue

Remember all those years ago when I said the whole 'woke this' and 'cancel culture that' were a waste of time because the press isn't running with the terminology?  Well professional Catholic apologist Mark Shea demonstrated better than I can why those who would resist the Leftwing juggernaut would do well to find a different approach than running about yelling 'Woke!':

Yep.  Jesus was woke don't you know.  The ultimate woke. - the Resurrection! Therefore anything accused of being woke is Jesus?  I know, it's borderline blaspheme from one who once said he used to confuse American Conservatism with Christianity.  Glad he's learned his lesson. 

Nonetheless, there is some truth to what he says.  If I'm not mistaken, that's where the term came from.  It was usually white liberals of sufficient means suddenly realizing that a wide array of their demographic identifiers were, in fact, of the Nazis.  Whether it was liberal men realizing the inherent worthlessness and sexist evil of all men, or liberal whites realizing that the white race is a pox upon humanity, or white 'conservatives' seeing the light of the all saving gospel of liberalism, it meant they 'woke up' to the truth that really saves.  That is, everyone else in their respective demographics are reprobates who simply aren't as righteous and holy as I am because they haven't realized how reprehensive their respective demographic really is. 

Conservatives ran with that idea, using the word 'woke' the way that liberals use the word 'white' today - exclusively as a negative.  The problem, again, is that the press isn't in on it.  Somehow, after only a decade ago when many were planning funerals for the press due to the Internet and Social Media, the press is alive and well and wielding more power than ever before. 

Therefore, if you want to speak of the great 2021 Asian Holocaust, you can and, more than that, you can influence society, silence dissension, and punish wrong-thinkers.  If you want to scream #MeToo or White Privilege, you'll be heard from the Atlantic to the Pacific.  It will become more sacred than the KJV to a Baptist fundamentalist.  In a few months, you may have the international community and some popes I know jumping on board. It doesn't have to be true.  The press is on your side, and that's what matters. 

But if you yell Woke, or Cancel Culture, expect to have laughter and giggles at best. So just stop.  Don't keep doing what isn't working.  Instead, just say to someone on the leftwing something along the lines of 'I understand you believe your superior values should be legislated by the State in order mandate conformity and punish or ban all who offend your morals', or some such.   That's all we're really saying when we say woke.  We're saying yesterday's liberals are now today's frothing at the mouth fundamentalists.  Sure, it's not a pithy little slogan that fits on a button.  But when the ones who make the buttons say they won't play your game, you're forced to improvise.  

Friday, April 9, 2021

Sam Rocha is correct

 For the wrong reason, but correct nonetheless:

Woke, cancel culture, PC, cultural Marxism - all of these are lame terms to be sure, even if they are are used to describe something very simple.  They point to the fact that modern liberals are intolerant, self-righteous, judgmental, and expect their superior values to be mandated by the state, imposed on the populace, with anyone failing to conform deserving to be retaliated against accordingly.

In short, the liberals of today are really the fundamentalists of yesterday. That's almost unfair to fundamentalists.  For most of our country's history, your fundamentalist zealot was always afoul of the powers that be, including higher education, pop culture and the press.  

Today, on the other hand, the leftwing enjoys complete support from those and similar outlets.  That is why, as I said here, any argument against a leftwing narrative can preemptively be framed under the assumption that racism, sexism, bigotry, hate, or what have you, is the motive.  Which is why a man suggesting that you need a man and woman for sexual reproduced is forced to apologize in order to save his reputation.  True or not, we can frame his statement has hatred and bigotry and charge forth. It's how the side that once screamed 'never impose values on others' can shamelessly impose its values on others today. 

So yes, Sam is correct, at least in his appraisal of the terms.  Those are some lame terms. They are lame terms because the press - on board with the left's forces of intolerance, judgmentalism, and imposing leftwing values on the populace - doesn't run with them.  #MeToo, BLM, Global Warming, White Privilege, Systemic Racism?  Those become sacred mantra because those institutions in league with the leftwing support the cause and sanction them by endless repetition.  But woke, cancel culture, pc?   Nope.  They sound silly because they are made to sound silly. 

It's just that in an age in which a bumper sticker holds too much information for your average post-modern to process, those who would resist the leftwing intolerance have yet to find that clever slogan that will do the trick.  Perhaps taking a deep breath and calling the leftwing out for what it is might be the better solution. 

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

A picture is not worth a thousand words

 Case in point:

Not a color photo of early 20th Century America   

Yep.  When we consider that both our corporate interests and news media outlets are now activists for the leftwing agenda, they barely have to pretend.   Really.  I watch and read news today, and there is no real attempt to present their stories as being objective. In most cases, it's pure advocacy. 

Nonetheless, on those rarest of occasions where they feel the need to trot out a video or photograph to give the notion of objective journalism some heft, we still should be wary.  It comes down to trust.  Because even photos and videos can be easily manipulated and edited, I must therefore trust the source.  And today, I would trust honest Larry the used car salesman before I trust the press. Therefore, show me a photo or a video, and it means nothing.  The distrust is still there. 

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

If lynching is the first thing you think of when you see a tree

Then you might need to do some praying.  Or if not a religious type, at least some therapy.   In the olden days, we would have considered this type of reaction to point to a deep psychological ailment.  Not today of course

Today, as the national mental health industry pulls in revenues that dwarf many a Fortune 500 corporation, the perspectives we used to call psychologically compromised are now endorsed and encouraged.  As I think of the money the mental health industry generates, I wonder if it's not like dentists prescribing chocolate and candies to their patients. 

Of course by lynching, I think we only mean blacks who were lynched.  Whenever I heard this objection, I get the impression that all those whites, or other ethnicities, who died by such means are of no particular interest.  I could be wrong, but that's the impression I have.  

Nonetheless, we've encouraged this sort of thing.  Our experts, our mental health counselors, our scientists and doctors and national leaders (and some religious leaders) have all encouraged the reaction we see in this story. I don't blame the individual in question.  She's merely going where our nation's institutions and leaders have told her to go for several decades now.  

And yes, I get that this is happening in Portlandastan, that part of America so far to the Left it barely can tolerate communism.  This whole story is the result of eliminating mascots deemed too white and Western - the great Western genocide.  But the coalition being formed to destroy the Christian West and its values and freedoms is a shaky one.  Even now there are cracks in the walls.  Expect these to get worse as the powers behind the Western purge scramble to end up on top of the ash heap.  

Monday, April 5, 2021

Comrade Frodo

 Because there was a film adaptation of The Lord of the Rings produced in the Soviet Union:

I can say no more.   Except there are more videos that follow the production through, possibly to the end of the books.  I just couldn't watch all the way through, because there are some things I don't want in my mind when reading one of my favorites.  

Sunday, April 4, 2021

Happy and Blessed Easter

Now on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran, and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” Peter then came out with the other disciple, and they went toward the tomb. They both ran, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first; and stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; he saw the linen cloths lying, and the napkin, which had been on his head, not lying with the linen cloths but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not know the Scripture, that he must rise from the dead. Then the disciples went back to their homes.  John 20.1-10

Saturday, April 3, 2021

The lukewarm Laodiceans

And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.  Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’— and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked—I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”   Revelation 3.14-22

On this Holy Saturday, while Christ was in the tomb quite dead, it’s worth pondering this.  I’ve often thought this was the seed that was strangled by the thorns and thistles of life. The ones trudging through, spinning a fine Christian yarn on most Sundays and the odd special holy day, but Monday through Friday, from eight until about six in the evening, it’s atheism and materialism and worldly values all the way.   It’s the kind of compromise that leaves us forever with one foot on both the ship and the dock, even as the barque pulls ever further away from the worldly pier.  This especially hurts in our nation, where no matter what we're seeing in terms of godlessness and evil, so many American Christians still take comfort in the fact that we are rich, wealthy and have need of nothing. 

The imagery is not pretty, given that this is probably where many are who otherwise wouldn’t tolerate heresy or false teachings, or support or indulge in sexual debauchery and decadence during such a time as our era of AIDS.  And yet, in refusing to yield on those fronts, it doesn’t mean we are still burning with passion, but rather are tied and twisted in the things of this world.  Note the shocking statement that the Lord would rather us be altogether on the opposite side of the road from the Truth.  Better that than meandering around the middle of the road, where one can be squashed like a grape.  And note the verbiage: I will vomit you out of My mouth.  Being lukewarm is not an option.  It is not a viable alternative to full-blown blasphemy or apostasy.  There is one way, the narrow way.  Any other, including halfway between two camps, merely leads to destruction.