Monday, May 31, 2021

Memorial Day and two Americas

 On one hand, those who remember this:

What Memorial Day is all about

On the other, those who reflect this:

Not a Freudian Slip, but a core value of the Left

Yes, I know.  Call them out and they'll be indignant that we suggest they no longer care.  They'll then insist they do.  I've noticed that's a tactic when calling out the modern Left.  Often their lack of concern is demonstrated by their general lack of concern.  But calling that out never does any good since they can then insist, for the umpteenth time, that they obviously do care, pay tribute, etc. 

I'm old enough to remember when across St. Blogs, Memorial Day was a time when so many Catholics I followed remembered the fallen, paid tribute to our nation and its heroes, and called upon us to reflect on our blessings as Americans.  This year I decided to look around at some old blogs and bloggers I've followed, or used to follow, over the years.  Not ones I started following over the last couple years, but ones that are still around who were around when I first visited the Catholic blogosphere, and in the first few years of my life as a Catholic.

Of those I checked, only this at The American Catholic had any clear reference to the holiday.  There were actually some other posts on TAC as well paying tribute at this time of year.  And this, of all places at Mark Shea's new blog.  But that was it.  Of the Catholic blogs I discovered in my early day, of those still running in some form or another, that was the only one to mention or reference Memorial Day.

I even found some Catholics on Twitter.  I don't do Twitter myself, but I see people keep up with Twitter and can access it that way.  Of those Catholics I know of from the olden days who Tweet, I found not a single reference to Memorial Day.

That is not a coincidence.  The country that those we remember at  this time of year is under assault and, quite frankly, losing.  The move to destroy the US and the Western Tradition is well under way.  Those Catholics who would stand with Ms. Harris are the ones happy to join in the destruction of America and the West, including traditional, historic orthodox Christianity.  They will accept any loony BS and sanctify it, turning a blind eye to the problems, using any trick in the book to deflect from the obvious. 

If you call them out, sure they'll say they weep with those in the top picture.  But at this point, you'd have to call them out.  Say nothing, and I can almost guarantee you'll hear nothing from them at all.  No support for Ms. Harris's picture of course.  But nothing at all if possible.  Thus is America, 2021.  For our part, the boys went out together again and helped my mom pay respects at the local cemetery:

Count us with the top picture. 

Saturday, May 29, 2021

This Memorial Day

First business.  Here is a link to an old post I did about movies we try to watch on Memorial Day.  The same can go for other similar holidays, like Veteran's Day and Independence Day.  

Now, fact is, times change.  The older boys are all going on their respective paths in life and aren't around like they used to be.  That means  we can't just plug in movie after movie.  Chances are, if we see one, it will be that one for the holiday.  

Nonetheless, the older three still try to make space to be with us.  Even when dating girls, they say they need at least one night a week to be with the family, if not a couple.  If nothing else warmed my heart in this cold age - and it is cold, we need the heat on during this weekend owing to Global Warming - it would be that. 

There is also the changing times in general.  I wrote here that we are wrapping up 'Their Year'." That is the part of the year in which month after month is dedicated to framing the US, the West, white people, and Christian values as Nazi evil.  Oh, there are islands in that oceanic storm of anti-Westernism: Lent and Easter, Presidents' Day, St. Patrick's Day, Memorial Day - but the whole of this half of the year is met with endless pokes and prods against almost everything the boys were raised to cherish. 

Though they pointed out something.  This year they heard less of the news pieces or clips or asides celebrating Black History Month or Martin Luther King or the sacredness of feminism, or the usual accompanying reminders of slavery, racism, sexism, genocide, bigotry, and general evil that usually swirled around such things in years past.  They wondered why.  Then the concluded that there is no longer a need. 

Let's face it, the forces that would destroy the West, its values, its beliefs and faith, its principles, its freedoms, benefits and ideas of equality before God, are now entrenched and beginning to officially move forward.  There was no need to continue anti-Nazi propaganda after the war was over.  There is no need to continue turning people against America and the West.  It's happening on its own.  However many object or wish it wouldn't, the war for the West is over, and it is lost.  As I said before, we're now in mop-up operations. 

Because of this, and because of what they see and hear in their college environment, it's tough to feel that same sense of rousing patriotism and awe for those who gave the last full measure of devotion.  More like pity they said.  Pity that the country they laid down their lives for was unable to survive a few dozen generations.  Pity that many who died gave their all for a country their children and grandchildren gleefully set about destroying and handing over to its new enemies.  

Like one son said, however, America rose from nowhere to dominate the world in a mere hundred years or so. It would stand to reason, therefore, that our demise would be a speedy affair.  Perhaps that's the point of anything in this world.  All things fear time, but time fears the pyramids, so goes an old Arabic proverb.  Unless you're the pyramids, time will gobble up anything we do, no matter how virtuous, how brave, how honorable.  Sometimes those actions will be remembered for ages to come.  Sometimes they fizzle fast.  In any event, if we do it to be remembered forever by men, we do it in vane.  

Perhaps it's enough that we do it, and the One who sees all things will know what was done, even if everyone else in the world forgets, or works to undo it. I suppose, at the end of the day, that's still worth celebrating, that those facing the inevitability of time still gave everything they had for us chaff in the wind. 

Thursday, May 27, 2021

There were many things we worried about when Dad worked on the railroad

There were derailments.  There were the freak head-on collisions, one of which claimed a friend and coworker of my dad when I was only a baby.  There were, of course, gasoline trucks.  Those were the bogeyman for every railroad crewman and his family.  There were freak accidents in the railroad yard.  Those are, after all, mammoth machines and pieces of equipment all around you when you're in a yard setting.  I don't know if you ever stood in front of a train engine, right in front of it, staring it down, but they're terrifying to see up close. 

A friend and former colleague from Nigeria I knew in my Protestant days once told me something that in hindsight made perfect sense.  He asked if I could guess what blew him away more than anything else when he first came to America.  I told him I couldn't begin to guess.  He said our trains.  He had never seen anything so monstrous or spectacular as our railroads and their engines.  They are big.  

Because of that, there was always a chance for injury or death on the railroad. True, it wasn't like it was in the days of steam.  Those steam engines were very, very risky to work on.  While many romanticize the glory days of steam, and even some old timers looked back with fondness on the old iron horses, my dad was never one who did.  He couldn't let the door hit the steam era in the behind fast enough.  

Noisy, hot, freezing, miserable, dangerous.  He was a fireman for all but the last few years of steam, and that meant straddling two separate wobbling machines barreling 70 mph down the tracks, seeing the railroad ties soaring by underneath, while shoveling about 100 tons of coal into a blast furnace a thousand degrees minimum, even if it was freezing outside.  Good riddance was Dad's opinion.  As soon as he could ditch the coveralls and hat he did, and went to polos with sunglasses and jeans. 

But then Dad always saw the railroad as a job, and nothing more. In the 1960s and 1970s, model railroading reigned as one of the biggest hobbies in America.  I knew several kids who had model railroad sets.  I met several over the years who had quite elaborate displays, including our high school chemistry teacher (who was always a bit smitten about  Dad's job).  When people would ask why he never had a big railroad layout in his house, he would respond that when people have model office buildings, law offices or factories in their homes, he'll have a model railroad in his.  It was a job.  A sometimes dangerous job, a good paying job with excellent retirement that Mom would not have made it this far without, but a job nonetheless.

All of this is to say that with all that working on the railroad was, the good, the bad, the scary and the dangerous, the one thing we never thought to worry about was a mass shooting at one of the railroad yards.  Why?  For the same reason we never worried about mass shootings in schools.  They didn't happen but rarely, if at all.  It just wasn't a thing.  

Despite gun laws being looser in many ways than today, and most people I grew up with having guns all over the place, it never dawned on us to worry that someone would get a gun and walk in and just start shooting because they just walked in an started shooting. Yes, you had the odd mass killing.  A few times there were mass shootings.  But they were rare.  They weren't something that happened every week, much less every day.

Even if you account for the news media hyping things, you must admit these things happen more, and in ways, that simply hadn't happened until a few decades ago.  Even if guns - and yes that include semi-automatics - were available, it just wasn't a thing.

If we care about human life, we would look at the disease, not the symptom or the tool.  If there was an accident on the railroad of any type, they would immediately check things out to see why and what was the root cause of the tragedy.  It's what they did.  So far, we've dodged looking at the root cause of our ever mutating culture of violence by focusing ever and only on guns, Guns, GUNS!  

Even if all of our solutions would barely shave off a fraction of the deaths in our country, we're content with that instead of asking the hard questions, like where did we as a society go wrong.  Which strongly suggests our concern about victims of gun violence is less about the human life involved and more about going after things that have been around for much longer than the problem we're using to go after them. 

For me, while I pray for the victims and the loved ones who they leave behind, I'm prepared to face the tough questions about the nation and world we've built and are responsible for.  To refuse to go there and obsess only about something that is a mere tool and clearly not the cause of the problem must, at some point, be an affront to God.  After all, we're to be about loving our neighbor, not exploiting him to ramrod our pet agendas and axes to grind. 

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

How to recognize stupidity when we see it

 Right here:

That's Candace Owens, she's black and she's stupid.  How do I know?  Because she doesn't fall in line with liberal dogmas and narratives.  And we know any black person who questions or challenges liberalism or the left is duped, brainwashed, stupid, an Aunt Jemima (or, depending on gender identity, an Uncle Tom).  

On the other hand, when we point out that blacks may have been duped by the Democrats and modern liberalism, we're called racists for suggesting blacks could be duped, brainwashed or are in some way stupid.  That's bigotry of course.  

One of modern liberalism's most endearing qualities is hypocrisy and double standards. It couldn't survive without them.  So reliant is liberalism on applying standards to others that liberalism has no intention of abiding by itself, at times it comes off like a core value of the Left.  

Sometimes I notice the more radically hypocritical the Left becomes, the more likely it is that something is seriously wrong with what it's promoting.  For instance, given that it lashes out brutally at anyone who ponders the sudden change of heart that the pro-Segregationist Democratic Party experienced in the 1960s, and wonders if it didn't simply find a new way to keep the black man down, I can't help but wonder if there's something to that.  Looking at things in the black community since it threw itself fully into the Democratic camp, it does make you wonder. 

It also explains the point Miss Owens is making.  It's easy to believe the Left doesn't give two swinging damns or a hell about black lives, Asian lives, or any lives, given that it carefully guards against anyone looking at the main causes of most murdered black Americans.  It appears to care about lives insofar as it can exploit them.  That comes from the modernist tendency of not basing agendas on principles, but basing principles on agendas.  In this case, caring about one convenient life while ignoring ten thousand inconvenient lives. 

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

BLM and how liberalism wins every time

 Exhibit A:

Just look at that promotional banner.  True, it could be an editorial or opinion piece instead of an actual news article.  I don't know.  It's becoming more and more difficult to tell the difference.  My limit  for the month was exceeded, so I can't be sure what type of piece it is.  But in looking at its promotional headline for BLM, something dawned on me.  I realized that in almost a year, the national press has yet to report on Black Lives Matter.

Promote, advocate, endorse, and rally for BLM, yes.  It's done that in spades.  But actually report, investigate, analyze?  Not even close.  I attended high school pep rallies that were more objective than the "reporting" done regarding BLM.  For a year the national press, the international press, and hence the international community, has proclaimed BLM to be the gospel incarnate, with only one possible response: complete acceptance and support.  Or else. 

And then I realized that's how liberalism wins.  Conservatives often believe they are right and others are wrong.  Liberals, on the other hand, know they are right and anyone daring to challenge that fact is Nazi.  That's a powerful rhetorical tool, to wade into a topic with the assurance that you incarnate the scientifically indisputable God-truth of salvation and moral infallibility.  And yet they do, and conservatives typically wither and crumble before the assault.

Or conservative immediately find themselves on the defensive, beginning every response with 'now I'm not a homophobe, or I don't hate Asians, or I was appalled at George Floyd's death' or whatever.  Already they've done just what the liberal argument demands - accept the liberal premises.  

Sometimes conservatives will accept certain parts of the premise and the narrative as well.  Of course racism defines America, we admit America was a racist nation, naturally the West was enmeshed in genocide and racism, yes Christians have brutally persecuted homosexuals, of course even the Bible was awash in sexism and discrimination.  Naturally no slaves ever suffered like slaves in America.  Yes, every plantation was a death camp and every cotton field a gas chamber.  This is sometimes done by conservatives of different stripes who can score points against those other conservatives.  Catholics, for instance, love to trot out America as anti-Immigrant racist state when it comes to Americans opposing old immigration from Catholic countries, for instance. 

And speaking of those other conservatives, sometimes conservatives try the old 'not me' approach, beginning a topic with 'sure some conservatives are racist, misogynists, homophobic bigot Neanderthals',  but they certainly aren't.  Again, scoring a half dozen victory points to the liberal narrative and its assumptions before taking their next breath.  When was the last time you ever heard a progressive or liberal begin a debate this way?   All of which helps establish the first part of any conversation as affirming the truth and credibility of the very liberal agendas and arguments those conservatives wish to dispel. 

So it's a powerful thing, dogmatic self-affirmation.  And that's what liberalism does, in all of its institutional forms.  My sons noticed that when thinking about Orthodoxy this year.  We were remembering the times during our sojourn with the Orthodox.  Some day I will have to spell out just why we returned.  There were, after all, many things I found commendable within Orthodox circles.  

One has been their insistence on trying to retain a certain 'Christian cultural discourse.'  That is, trying to keep conversations and basic interactions on a level that one may have encountered all over Christendom centuries ago. 

One thing that they do, for instance, at least in church, is to always great each other with variations of 'Christ is risen', to be followed by 'Truly He is risen.'  The wording changes depending on the season, and always with variations through the season of Pascha.  But we had to get used to fact that they don't just say, "hi Dave', they say, depending on time of year, "Christ is Risen!"  After a bit of time, it got easy to respond accordingly. 

Well, my boys noticed that in their college culture today, that is how most of these issues are addressed.  In most cases, that is how various movements or topics or activism is spoken of, like a dogmatic greeting.  Thus when a student says Black Lives Matter, it is not open for debate, any more than Christ is Risen is supposed to begin a theological discussion.  It is a statement of faith, of unwavering, indisputable, non-negotiable faith.  Black Lives Matter!  Truly Black Lives Matter.

That's that.  That's how you respond.  You don't say 'Gee, while I agree with that sentiment, I...' Stop!  The moment, the second, you don't respond with appropriate dogmatic utterances, you are now the enemy.  You've exposed your racism, your heresy, your blasphemy.  You are now a threat.  You are hate, and are embarking on violence against salvation and sanctification through the Left.  To do anything other than respond with 'Truly Black Lives Matter', or similar responses to #MeToo, Stand With Asians, Fight White Privilege, End Systemic Racism, Stop Global Warming or any one of a dozen similar slogans, makes you the enemy.  Period.  End of statement.  The conversation is over, and the liberal in question now ponders if he should walk away, or are you now a threat needing put in your place. 

And that's powerful.  That sort of zeal and fanaticism will always beat out the person wading into a debate with 'I'm sure I've been wrong before, but perhaps we can come to an agreement.'  It came to this in our society today because the press, educators and intellectuals, celebrities and corporate leaders all embraced the same agendas, making such religious faith statements the cultural ocean in which younger generations swim, to paraphrase Peggy Noonan.  It's been that way for several years, so the kids my sons' age have no way of imagining that there could possibly be another way of seeing things than the way the Left, with its monopoly of our nation's power cells, have proclaimed. 

That is why to question white privilege, America as a nation founded on genocide, racism and slavery, to think boys and girls physically exist, to imagine marriage between a man and a woman, and on and on, would be like hearing someone say 'Remember Pearl Harbor' and responding with 'What about Pearl Harbor?' if you lived in 1941.  It's well beyond the younger generation's ability to fathom that there could be anything other than their statements of faith.  Any more than this NYT headline, or any other article today, has any hope of imagining the leftwing activism it is promoting is anything other than gospel truth. 

Friday, May 21, 2021

Democrats promote bill targeting black Americans

Yep, says so right here.  A bill targeting hate crimes again Asian Americans, when it's commonly known, and begrudging admitted, that black Americans make up the single largest demographic group who targets Asian Americans.  In fact, in most of the video clips I've seen on the news of Asians being attacked, it's black assailants who are the mischief.  

So when a disproportionate numbers of blacks are arrested, assuming the numbers continue as they have been, will we then hear about how racist we are as a country? 

Of course this has little to do with anything.  It's not about protecting Asians or giving a damn about blacks any more than #MeToo gives a rip about sexually assaulted women unless it's convenient.  It's evil, and sane people of good will see it for what it is.  Now we're beyond just hate crimes, but we are singling out this or that group for special protection, while ignoring any stats that could help because overnight we've sanctioned racism and ethnic cleansing as the only way to be American.  

We are seeing people - national leaders, politicians, power players mind you - openly declare that they will allow only the correct skin color to drink at their fountains.  We see religious leaders embrace race obsession with Jesus in a way I've not seen outside a KKK rally.  We've all but ditched the old 'one race, the human race' and 'equality for all.'  In fact, in a spectacular turn around, equality is now a racist term, and if you even think that everyone is equal  in the eyes of God, well obviously that's the new definition of Nazi. 

My oldest sons are amazed at this. As they said, it was drilled into their heads through public school that we must be color blind, we must look past our racial differences and affirm a single human race. To repeat the famous quote, we must judge not by skin color, but by the content of character.  Anything less than this is a one way road straight toward Auschwitz.  So it's stunning for them to see all that they were told is evil is now completely endorsed by our nation, our national leaders, our schools and colleges, our popular culture, celebrities, sports figures, corporations and even some religious leaders.  It's not like the Nazis.  It's like the Nazis coming to power preaching against anti-Semitism and then turning on a dime and ramping up the old gas chambers once they're calling the shots. 

But then, as they say, it took someone to make up the masses at the Nuremberg rallies.  Now maybe we'll judge those people less harshly since we've seen how easily, and how quickly, evil can become embraced by a nation, from its leaders down to the people on the street.  In fact, those embracing the evil today have one thing the Nazis and the slave owners of old didn't have, and that's the lessons from the Nazis and slave owners of old.  I believe it is possible that on the day of judgment, those condemning the racists and ethnic cleansers of today will be the ones from Germany, 18th Century Alabama and Colonial Europe who will insist if they knew what we know today, they happily would have repented their sins.  

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Light blogging for the near future

Owing to the beneficence of our good Uncle Sam, we're undertaking a few needed renovations to our lovely testimony to postmodern Capitalism.  I know, that's harsh.  But it's true.  And I continue to insist defending capitalism should ever and always be separate from supporting the very beneficiaries of it that were clearly, decades ago, exploiting it and actually doing harm to the legacy of the capitalism that had so enriched them.  As we're seeing today.

Be that as it may, we'll be busy for the next few days if not a week or so.  God's blessings until I'm back.  Unless something urgent catches my eye, or whimsical and fun, I'll likely be back by late week or early next.  TTFN!

Monday, May 17, 2021

There is no Woke capitalism

There is only Capitalism.  As I've been told a million times over the years, it's the bottom line.  Why do businesses meet added expenses born of government regulation by screwing their employees?  It's the bottom line.  Why do businesses meet the burden of taxation by cutting quantity and diminishing quality?  It's the bottom line.  The bottom line doth solve a multitude of problems. 

Well, I suppose it's time to admit the obvious.  Why is corporate America at the vanguard of the movement to destroy America, the Western Christian tradition and its values, and even ideas of equality, liberty and democracy?  Well my friends, I guess it's the bottom line. 

At some point, corporate execs and bean counters ran the numbers and realized there's more money to be made sucking up to tyranny and totalitarianism and appealing to people who want to see America and the West burn, than there is trying to preserve those same traditions.  And since conservatives have sanctified the bottom line as the end all 'get out of jail free' card for whatever corporations do, it's hard now to hear them bemoan what is logical per their own sanctioning of corporate decision making.  

Why are corporations promoting racism, tyranny, censorship, group identity, and a basic assault on America's history and the heritage of the Judeo-Christian West?  Because that's where the money is.  That precious bottom line.  

So by now, if we are clever, we'd start thinking long and hard about how long this has been the case.  How many things did conservatives of old cherish that the corporate interest concluded had to go?  Ross Douthat ponders the relationship between Capitalism and Conservatism.  

I'm no economist, so I can't speak to the details.  I can, however, admit that the problems conservatives are now struggling with as the corporate interests they have so long defended turns on them, are problems that are nothing new.  It's just now, they're more obvious than ever. 

Saturday, May 15, 2021

Things like this make me itch

So I saw this pop up:  

It reminds me of those old atheist memes that have 50,000 lines drawn all over the Bible indicating tahtt there are 50,000 falsehoods and contradictions in the Bible.  It's silly and junk of course, but atheists lap it up like a thirsty dog.

So we have the above Youtube video where a priest in Anglo-land decides to put forth the popular idea that the much hated and loathed Lifesite News (of course they're hated) has printed 9,125 falsehood inside of 12 months.  Again, forgive me for being highly skeptical about such a claim, just as I was about those atheist memes. 

So I decided to watch the video since I don't want to prejudge or anything.  And what's the first thing he hits on?  After an into about the importance of Truth, he wades into Lifesite over the Covid topic. I know little about Lifesite and what it says, so I'm not up to defending it one way or another.  Perhaps it has printed exactly 9,125 falsehoods in 12 months, not one more, not one less.

But when the first argument against them, as put forth by the good father in the video, is that obviously the vaccines aren't as bad as the virus (hint: we don't know yet, they were rushed through in almost record time and it's impossible to know long term effects, or any effects) or that lockdowns always work (see here for my take), that's a warning flag right there.  

After all, there is a wide space between disagreeing, being wrong and actively promoting falsehoods.  Unless you believe you and those you listen to are obviously always right (and naturally of good will and the purest of motives), there should be some reservation about attributing the worst motives or worth to those who might look at the numbers and reach other conclusions. 

That's why I would never call you a liar or a promoter of falsehoods for saying lockdowns obviously work.  I would call you hopelessly naive since even a casual comparison between regions that locked down and corresponding Covid rates and deaths shows it's about more than just lockdowns.  Heck, it shows it's more than a host of measures we've used to combat Covid.  

In fact, to me the most obvious fact to come out of Covid, beyond the disastrously inconsistent messaging, is that we still know little about it, and it's likely there are other ways of dealing with it that address these X variables that skew the narratives we're apparently not allowed to question.  But I wouldn't call the good father a liar or a promoter of falsehoods simply because he completely embraces the predominant global corporate narrative of the efficacy of lockdowns (a narrative that has done wonders for the global corporate bottom line over the last year it's worth noting). 

That's the difference. .Maybe Lifesite is as bad as other media outlets that might not always be on the straight and narrow in terms of unbiased, accurate reporting. Or maybe it simply looks at the numbers, the narratives, and the agendas and concludes there are other ways of parsing the stats.  

In any event, there is a difference between other ways of seeing things that run afoul of global corporate endorsed narratives and being willing promoters of falsehoods.  To label any disagreement as promoting falsehoods might be as bad as the ones you're accusing.   But being as bad as the others in order to prove Lifesite is as bad as the others doesn't help.  In fact, it makes the problem all that much worse.  

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Catholic love for the new racism explains a lot

 The more I see Catholics embrace the nakedly obvious racism that says if it's white, it's evil:

The more pictures like this make perfect sense:

Yep.  Suggesting  that the Sacred Heart of Jesus image is default evil due to skin color is as racist as anything to emerge from a KKK rally or a nice march around the streets of Nuremberg, c. 1930s.  We won't even get into the laundry list of flawed narratives that are needed to embrace such bilge.  But it's officially endorsed by the powers that be, the beautiful (and wealthy and powerful) people, the ones at all the best parties with T&A.  

I get that the whole reason for the Left's obsession with tearing down white statues of Jesus or Mary or comparing any Caucasian anything to Nazi propaganda is supposedly because of the sudden wave of white supremacy that is confined to white Red State conservative Christians who vote republican and support Trump.  I'm also smart enough to know that it's part of the ploy to eradicate the heritage of the Christian faith and the West's contributions of liberty, equality, life's sanctity and general Christian morals. 

Truth be told, in all my decades as a Christian, the only thing about Jesus' ethnicity ever mentioned was as a testimony to the universality of the Gospel that so many cultures and ethnicities could portray Jesus as one of their own.  Europeans being no exception to this rule.

It's a tactic of the modern Left and its stock and store of lies that it lifts up a bogeyman, and then uses said bogyman to advance its cult of race hate, genocide and tyranny in the name of diversity and inclusion.  And it's a testimony to the awful track record of Christians that so many will leave church on a Sunday, stumbling over themselves to join in the latest evils du jour. 

After all, we can plainly see that, with the predictability of a Kantian stroll, you have Catholics falling over themselves to embrace, advocate and promote this latest bout of racism and ethnic cleaning.  If they are doing it today, there's a 99% chance that 80 years ago in another time and place, they'd be doing it then. God have mercy on their souls for what they are about to do. 

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Just who are the dumb ones?

For most of my life the dominant cultural narrative was that, with the exception of William F. Buckley, Jr., conservatives are stupid and liberals are smart.  But then it was also the narrative that conservatives were intolerant and liberals were open-minded, conservatives were judgmental and liberals were accepting, and conservatives were violent and liberals were peaceful. So there you go. 

Nonetheless, I've often wondered about that narrative given the head-up-a-donkey's-butt lunacy you sometimes hear coming from people to the left of center. Take for instance this gem from some time back.  Note how easy it was for reader Nate Winchester to own the stupid criticism that the Bible isn't like books we write today. 

In keeping with that trend, I saw this headline:

Candace Owens mocks Harry Styles for wearing a dress.  Did she forget about Jesus? 

It's from over a year ago, and it's an attack piece on every leftists' favorite black woman to hate, Candace Owens.  Like all things liberal, we hear that it's racist to assume blacks have been duped by liberals and Democrats because that suggests blacks are stupid.  But then the same liberals assume any black conservative or non-liberal black commentator has been duped by white racists because the golden rule of the left continues to be 'how dare you do unto us the way we do unto you.'

But just look at that headline.  It was brought to my attention because of the sheer dumb.  I looked and thought it must be a hook.  You know, a headline meant to appear one way that, once you read the article, doesn't really represent the meat of the content.  

But no.  He's actually arguing that Jesus wore so-called dresses because apparently anything dropping lower than waist level in any culture in history was a dress in the way we understand dresses today.  Wearing a toga or wearing a thawb or wearing a kilt is wearing a dress because all fashion in all of history in all of the world is measured according to today's standards (one of the byproducts of the left's obsession with presentism nowadays).  They were dresses because apparently Liz Plank believes men in Saudi Arabia wear dresses?  Because fashion in 500 BC Greece must mean the same thing it means on a fashion model runway in Manhattan in 2021?  That's good scholarship and top notch journalism. 

In kindergarten, we understood and were taught that people in different ages and cultures did things differently than we do.  In fact, in a bizarre twist, we were taught it was wrong when Europeans insisted indigenous people stop dressing their way and dress the way Europeans dressed. How does that square with this piece? 

This is the side that insists it's the smart one.  And for some reason, conservatives often act as if that's a premise that must be overcome.  Part of why this gets a pass within progressive circles is because not caring about anything is a dominant trait for the modern leftwing era.  Really.  They just don't care.  Appeal to this argument, appeal to that fact, appeal to the other reality, and they just laugh and call you names.  Like Moe from the cartoon strip Calvin and Hobbes.  A grunt and a 'yeah, so what?' will do.  Whatever to win the latest argument or advance the agenda is true for the moment. 

But don't ever think they own the intellectual high ground.  And don't be fooled by the press's tendency to ferret out examples of someone who might be a conservative who says something dumb as proof conservatives are dumb.  If they do, never forget this gem at the always reliable MSNBC.  After all, this is hardly a one time goof on the part of those to the left of center, and those who refuse to take a knee before the juggernaut should remember that. 

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

The truth behind Occupy Wall Street


And it must be true, I saw it on Twitter.  After all, we all know Twitter is one of modern journalism's main sources for solid information.   

So all those hippie wannabes we saw, camped out on sidewalks, espousing the glories of socialism and decrying the evils of capitalism were, it turns out, just pawns of a vast right wing conspiracy.  That would explain the mounting examples of OWS advocates dropping anti-Semitic jargon about all those corporate Jews who were behind the corruption.

It couldn't be that people who were left of center were invoking their inner anti-Semite.  That could never be.  We're pretty sure racism and bigotry only exist in Red States where white conservatives who vote Republican live.  So the above claim makes perfect sense. 

This is why, as I said here, you want to be leery about chasing conspiracy theories.  Not that conspiracy theories are never true.  Sometimes they are true.  Just ask Julius Caesar.  But as often as not, they're short of the complexities of reality.  Were their libertarian fascists (?) in the Occupy Wall Street movement leadership?  Perhaps.  Just like it wouldn't' surprise me that some behind the events in Washington on January 6 were Antifa types.  Or some leftwing activists began infiltrating old Tea Party rallies just to make them look bad. Given the track record of history, I'd be more shocked to find none of those things happened.

But it is laughable to imagine the whole was a vast libertarian fascist (?) conspiracy, where any and all bad that came from that toilet of a movement can be blamed on 'not my side' (from a liberal point of view).  Any more than a sane person can insist no Christian ever did anything wrong, so anything wrong done by people saying they're Christians must not have been done by a real Christian.  I believe there's a fallacy along those lines. 

Monday, May 10, 2021

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil

Is for evil men (and women) to fully embrace evil, that's what.  You have to have that to have evil do anything.  Evil men and women must embrace evil, sell their selves to the powers of Hell, and become instruments of the demonic and the damned.  That's the first thin you need for evil to triumph.

The second thing necessary is for good men not to do nothing.  In fact, people seldom do nothing.  They almost always do something.  And the second thing needed for evil to triumph is for otherwise good men (and women) to jump on the evil bandwagon.  If the Nazi leadership was the full embrace of evil, those guys gunning down naked Jews in trenches were the ones who made it possible.  And in most pictures, they aren't weeping either.  They're grinning big grins as they're ready to massacre the innocent.  That's the next thing needed for evil to triumph.  Those who were not initially part of the evil jump into evil with both feet.

So is the next thing the do nothing good men?  No.  Again, men seldom do nothing.  The next thing needed is for the good men who see what is happening to essentially make lame excuses or actually side with the evil, though they technically know it's wrong and don't support it.  That's happening a lot today.  I see people admit they see the clouds on the horizon, but at the first chance, they will excuse this or that: Well, in that case the police were wrong, or maybe banning a book with really bad content is good, or maybe it's right to point out that an entire ethnicity might always be guilty of something when there is a good argument.  They know it's BS, and they often say so.  But boy do they look for the chance to excuse surrendering the latest yard.

Now we're getting close.  The next group isn't making lame excuses, but they're not doing much to stop it.  They're not doing nothing.  They see the evil, the problems, the racism, the tyranny, the shadows - but they're just not doing much about it, but not by doing nothing.  They're fighting it, at least on paper.  But with all the passion of a limp noodle.  Perhaps they don't want to be mocked or laughed at, or worse lose their situation, but they draw a line between what they will do - fuss a lot on the Internet perhaps - and what they won't do (jeopardize their livelihoods). 

Finally, when all that is done, I'm sure there might be the odd individual who does nothing.  If that's the case, however, it's often that they're simply ignorant, or one of the masses of uninformed just trying to eke out a living and with no time to do more than look at the occasional headline.  They're the ones in the rural countryside who probably never heard of National Socialists in the German government in 1933.  By 1945, however they had heard.  By then, of course, it was too late. 

So there you have it.  As we see the officially sanctioned racism and discrimination, as we see the hate and endorsed vengeance, as we see the anti-American rage and destruction, the killings and attacks, the tyranny and oppression, the open calls to destroy everything to do with the Christian West, the excuse making to support bearing down on Christ's Church, we wonder how it's happening and happening so quickly.  That's not because good men are doing nothing.  It's because evil men (and women) are doing what they do, and that's pushing evil. The rest are falling into their own category of being active enablers of the evil.  Just as men and women have done for eons.  And just, as we're seeing, they will no doubt continue to do for eons to come. 

Sunday, May 9, 2021

A happy Mother's Day to my own Mom

That's my Mom right before her big nine-zero this last Christmas.  The boys and I surround her, with my wife, their Mom of the hour, taking the picture.  

She's not the mom I remember from my years growing up.   But then I was never the same son at any given year.  From infant to child to teen to young adult to lumbering 54 year old, I'm sure she looks at me and wonders where that little kid running about on our old wooden floors in the country ended up.  Such is time. 

But I count my blessings, and am happy for the privilege of taking care of her, even as now, after all these years, she still does her best to take care of us.  To her and my boys' most favorite mom, I wish the happiest and most blessed Mother's Day imaginable  May we celebrate many more and rejoice in all that God has so freely given us. 

Saturday, May 8, 2021

I did laugh because we all get it


Mental Health industry as the modern televangelists

My second oldest made that observation.  As an industry, the American Mental Health profession brings in revenues that rival many a Fortune 500 corporation.  The take is literally in the billions.  That's because mental health is - everything. 

Last year, our local news station had a special series on local faith communities and mental health.  Note that.   It was all various religious leaders of different faith traditions speaking to mental health.  Not spiritual issues.  Not religious issues.  Nothing about sin or righteousness.  Certainly nothing about salvation.  Just mental health.  It was all mental health.  Score one for secularism and a godless model of the world.

But beyond that, I have to admit the mental health industry does seem to play into the narrative of the dentist who prescribes candy to his patients.  I mean, you don't turn around that you don't see a new syndrome or psychological crisis or emotional trauma in desperate need of professional counseling.  The idea is everywhere that we can't live life and do what ancient man would have been able to handle with no problem without a professional holding  our hands at 50.00 an hour. 

Last year, they actually interviewed mental health councilors who were on hand to help people suffering from 'Cooking at Home' stress.  Because nothing can be more difficult than cooking your own meals.  They also had specials walking people through how to handle having the kids at home because having kids around the house is apparently an unprecedented challenge. 

I write this, because I've now seen news segments and articles dealing with cicada stress syndrome.  Cicadas are going to be out and about this year.  It happens.  And has for quite a few years.  It's annoying.  We talk about it.  We move on.  

But now it's a syndrome.  It's something you may need help with.  You may need to pay someone money to help you through the stress of it all.  Why?  Because the news is running stories with mental health experts explaining why it's logical to be on the brink of a collapse because of the dreaded Cicada Pandemic. 

More to the point, even if you don't go and book a session with a counselor to survive the great Cicada disaster of 2021, you're nonetheless treated to the narrative that even the smallest, most trivial matters in life are beyond our ability to cope.  Therefore we must continue to feed this multi-billion dollar industry known as the mental health industry, or we're all doomed. 

I think my son is right. Tammy Faye couldn't have done it better. 

UPDATE: A perfect image of two approaches to our modern mental health era.  One voices skepticism that all things labeled in need of counseling are in need of counseling, the other saying listen to the experts with the education and training. 

I saw that and thought it was interesting, given the experts' insistence that short of professional help, we may not be able to navigate the anxiety brought about by the great Cicada Crisis of 2021. 

BTW, feel free to disagree with me.  I have had training and licensing in mental health counseling owing to my days as a pastor, though my full degrees were not in behavioral or mental health.  Nonetheless, even then I couldn't help but get the feeling we approached mental health issues the way we approach STEM, and that's giving them place of prominence well out of proportion from where they should be.  

Friday, May 7, 2021

It took me a few to not see an insect


The Left is tyranny's wildest dreams come true

Exhibit A:

Fresh off of his outrage that it happened to one on his side, Mark once more cheers Tech giants for doing to others what he was outraged about when it happened to him and his.

Now, there is a an added factor we need to consider.  As we see here, Mark immediately assumed that Sam was the victim of MAGA types doing it to Sam since Sam is Mexican?  So it wasn't because of the Tech corporations at all.  Likewise, some time ago I remember people saying Mark had been banned by either Facebook or Twitter, but he was apparently sure it was some algorithm glitch and nobody's fault.

That is the stuff that tyrant's dreams are made of. Beyond the all important 'do unto others as long as you don't do unto me' morality, you have an added layer of protection for those who would crush liberty and equality for all.  

When the companies do ban him, or one of his own, he simply blames - anyone else, preferably his favorite boogiemen, the white MAGA conservative Republican racist with white skin.  Doesn't have to be true.  There can be no facts or evidence at all.  It's simply important for the oligarchs who would rule over us to know that Mark will fully support them as they crush the rights of  'those types' over there, and when they finally turn their attention to crushing Mark's rights, he will still blame 'those types' over there.  

Such slavish devotion to a movement by so many who have seen that movement turn on its own on any given day, makes me think of nothing so much as the girl in this scene from the 1982 movie Conan the Barbarian:

Somehow I get the feeling there are some dictators from the last century rolling over in their graves wondering why they couldn't have lived today. For a bonus, next time we'll delve into the Left's longstanding defense of private businesses in the free market who wish not to be compelled to violate their religious beliefs regarding gay marriage.  Since apparently it's all about the freedom of the free market.  I'm sure the consistency will astound us. 

First they came for the socialists MAGA types, and I did not speak out - because I was not a socialist MAGA type.  Then they came for the trade unionists conservatives, and I did not speak out - because I was not a trade unionist conservative.  Then they came for the Jews Christians and I did not speak out - even though I was a Christian.  Then they logically came for me because I was a Christian - and I still blamed MAGA types and conservatives.  

Thursday, May 6, 2021

Because America is a racist nation

We have seen endless numbers of non-whites giving everything and, sometimes, risking everything to come here for decades.  Makes perfect sense to me.  If I cleaved unto the 90 ft. Left at least.  Those who don't bow before the 90 ft. idol are often infected with a deplorable amount of sanity and can see such a story and conclude the carefully crafted media narrative about a 400 year old racist Nazi state called America might just be slightly askew of the facts. 

Why conservatism never wins

Because, well, define conservative.  I remember ages ago, in the stone age of higher education, we used to have 'comment boards'.  Those were bulletin boards where people would post an article or even write up a little paper, tack it to the board, and await comments.  One I recall was a story about how Scottish Fundamentalists had derided Jerry Falwell as a liberal.  I knew then that the term 'liberal' no longer had any meaning.  Conservative, too.

Donald McCleary, at the always interesting and informative The American Catholic, had this little reminder about why conservatism is a doomed alliance for Christians.  Not because of any evil or wicked conspiracy to destroy.  It's just that change, as they say, is inevitable.  So with each passing generation, what conservative means changes as new generations seek to 'conserve' entirely new understandings of what needs conserving. 

My oldest son, who had flirted with a career in politics, noticed that.  Since he takes his Catholic faith pretty seriously, he couldn't align with the Democrats, though he didn't say they were always wrong about everything.  Nonetheless, he felt the Republican Party was the better bet, all things considered.  Yet as he mixed and mingled, he noticed something.  Beyond the obvious, that many in the GOP are no more conservative than a liberal Democrat, he noticed many who called themselves conservative weren't what you would think was conservative at all.  This was especially true among the younger conservative Republican sector.

Many his age or thereabouts had no problem with LGBTQ interests or gay marriage.  They might oppose abortion, but to a limited degree.  Or they may be more open to it.  Perhaps socialism does work in some cases.   America is and always has been a racist nation, that much is true.  And on and on.   These were, again, the ones his age who wore the label 'conservative GOP' with honor. 

That's because that's what they've been born and raised into.  They may not go crazy communist or want America and the Christian West burned to the ground.  That's how they understand themselves as conservative.  But the conservatism they espouse are things that may well have shamed a 1960's counterculture hippie broadening his mind at Haight and Ashbury. After all, to many my sons' age, what us old timers call radical left is as 'status quo' as a tent revival was in the 1920s.  

That's why conservatism loses.  At the end of the day, it sees itself all too often as merely conservative compared to the liberalism it opposes.  That is, it stays firmly three steps behind and four years away from liberalism.  But as liberalism, or change, or progress, moves inevitably farther and farther away from today, the conservative inevitably moves, too.  He may still be three steps behind, but now he's five miles away from what older conservatives ever would have identified with.  He's still conservative compared to the liberals he sees, but he misses that the conservatism he's defending would likely have been too liberal even for yesterday's liberals. 

By the by, that might also explain why so many from my Protestant days who aligned so strongly with the Religious Right and conservative Republicans are the ones partying at gay wedding receptions and calling down religious liberty as the systemically white racist trick that it is.  They're still conservative Christians. And they're doing what conservative Christians do, and that's conserve.  It's just that they're now conserving what they and most 20 years ago would have condemned.  Such is conservatism in a nutshell. 

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

So there you go

My old Patheos editor Sam puts out the final word on this leftist fundamentalism and censorship movement. 

Yep.  The forgiving side of me would like to think he's joking; that he's being like Colbert used to be, and trying to do a mock-up of a caricature of someone who is fighting to defend the banning of wrong-think.  That's the forgiving side of me.  After all, I'd hate to think a professor in higher education would write something like this for any reason other than humor. 

Still, the side that has seen him unload on Bishop Barron over the bishop's concern about this wave of  Leftwing 451, I'm inclined to think that it's at least partially anger on his part, and he at least means some of it. 

In any event, I have it on the best of authority that many who are bothered by the Left's donning of their merry McCarthy do, in fact, read and study books.  In fact, it's the reading of books that makes them a bit squeamish about the whole leftwing support for banning offensive culture since I know they'll never do it to me.  

I should add that I'm sure there are some who rely on common sense rather than book learning to understand it's ignorant to assume censorship will only apply to those bad people over there.  Likewise, I'm absolutely sure that if many who support this new wave of censorship  haven't avoided books, they nonetheless have read and studied all the wrong books. 

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

This is why I advised my sons not to join the military

This is what our military has been reduced to.  At a time of increased fatalities through accidents, cases in which servicemen have proven ill-prepared for combat, and mounting cases of criminal assault and unexplained murders, our military focuses on - all things gay sex. Because that's what the leftwing says to focus on. 

So what if as many Americans have died of AIDS - with the majority being homosexual men - as have been killed in all of America's wars combined?     If anyone doubts the 'cold civil war' or 'culture war' or whatever you prefer has been lost by those who would preserve the Christian Western tradition, I give you this. 

I try to imagine what future history will say about us. I don't think it will be pretty. 'So dad, you're saying that in a world of pandemic and mounting crisis, the thing they care about the most was who those in their military units wanted to have sex with?' 'Yes son, that explains a lot.'

Saturday, May 1, 2021

Media codewords for being correct

Whenever the media says you've ignited a fiery debate, or are controversial, or have offended someone, you can bet there's a 98% chance you're on the right side, the good side, the side of common decency, common sense and the general welfare of men of good will.  That's because the press has a tendency of describing rhetoric that way only when the rhetoric disagrees with the press.  And since the press has emerged as one of the greatest forces of lies and evil in the world, and perhaps the greatest threat to freedom, democracy and life itself we've seen since Moscow c. 1990, being on the wrong side of the press means you're probably doing something right. 

It's not that Black Lives Matter

It's that no lives matter until black lives do. On a more serious note,  my old Patheos editor Sam Rocha takes it to the next level by echoing the latest development in the 'judge by skin color, not content of character' movement.  Now no life matters - hear that oh sons of mine - until black lives matter.  And when and what that means means nothing since, like most things of postmodernity, there is no end game or goal or measurable outcome.  There is a slogan to be used to pummel, pummel, and pummel again.  

By the lack of clear finish lines and goals, combined with Sam's statement, my sons' lives may never matter again.  Or his life may not matter. Or even black lives may not matter? Who knows except what we all know which is always nothing ever.  And while we don't know, the goalposts continue to be moved. 

Note, however, how he easily weaves in and out of 'it's all sooooo complex' to stating his position about BLM with all the uncertainty of a Waco tent meeting. That's a trick my sons have noticed.  They saw it most recently in our neck of the woods when a police officer shot and killed a teenager who was attacking another girl with a knife.

They noticed that now the debate is over when a knife fight is OK, when it isn't, when wielding a knife and attacking someone might make you the victim, why police should have comprehensive knowledge of all people involved before reacting, and basically how we can ever know if C-A-T really doesn't spell DOG.

The important point isn't finding an answer, but keeping things in perpetual question mode.  Keep things jumping, hopping, and confusing.  Insist everything is always except for when it isn't until it's never which is yes no.  And that way, amidst the confusion, you can then plow forward - as Sam does - with the gospel of BLM, racial profiling, and guilt by group identity, ethnic liability, national origins and what have you.  In fact, so sure is he in pushing BLM that, compared to all the 'it's all so nuanced' filling his post, you can't help but pay some level of attention when he makes such dogmatic statements.

Which, my boys imagine, is the point.  Complexity when convenient, surrounding a juggernaut of dogmatic utterances that would make a Nuremberg speech seem nuanced by comparison.  That is one of modernity's neatest tricks.  It's how we went from a post-war liberalism that said violence is never the answer, to a 2020 insistence that those innocent killed by the BLM riots were sad, but necessary collateral damage for the greater cause.  Or the national 2021 debate about when trying to stab someone to death makes one the victim.  

There are so many other things wrong with this post.  It's sort of a condensed 'everything wrong with the modern left in one post' publication.  Such as Sam's easy dismissal of the lives ruined and incomes  lost from last year's riots.  Sam points out that so horrible has been the terror visited on black Americans for the last four hundreds years by all the racist whites in this racist nation, that they could riot and destroy (and perhaps kill?) for decades and it would never make up the balance.  Again, you heard liberals say violence is never the answer, but the Left now says that it can be a beautiful thing when executed for the leftist cause.

It's enough for my post, however, that his appeal to circular dogmatic nuance is why things like this, meme though it is:

Fall on deaf ears. It's a perfectly sane and valid point.  Why have our highest paid professionals concluded that a few seconds of often edited, fuzzy and shaky videos is enough to execute judgment, when we watch same highest paid professionals spend endless amounts of time examining the  most sophisticated and expensive motion picture capture before arriving at a conclusion?  In a sane and mature world not polluted by lies and foolishness, that is a valid point. But in a world of 'it's so complex let's charge forth with new morals that are right this time', it is, sadly, a waste of breath and ink.