Life's what you make it.
Beauty is naked.
Thursday, March 6, 2008
Life's what you make it.
Wednesday, March 5, 2008
Her "hopelessness", "frustration" and "disappointment" remain, exacerbated by guilt over her own success. That is not speculation, but a precis of her own account. One might speculate that the guilt became all the more poignant to the extent her success was unearned. Michelle Obama's employer, The University of Chicago Hospitals, paid her $121,910, a reasonable sum for the skill level evident in her thesis, but raised this to $316,952 shortly after her husband was elected US senator.
Unlike her husband, whose focus on his audience is unwavering, Michelle Obama remains at the mercy of the same internal conflict that she reported in her senior thesis. She is too bitter at the hopelessness of lower-class blacks to assimilate, but too attracted to money and privilege to reject white society. She hates the white institutions that made her prosperous, not only because they cannot solve the problems of the black lower class, but even more so because they made her feel guilty about her own success.
These internal conflicts help explain Michelle Obama's erratic behavior. Despite her own financial success, Michelle Obama continues to preach austerity and self-sacrifice to others....
This lady is a train wreck. Complaining about student loans when you're making that much money? Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and their ilk should shudder in their boots. They created her via injections of white resentment and affirmative action.
Did anyone get the license plate on that blond?
This is probably one of the most disorienting and disturbing videos I've ever seen. Visually and aurally jarring, it almost makes ya feel a little buzzed yourself.
Freaky mouse on the fretboard. Nice monopoly dog pissing on the furniture. And gotta love those socks.
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
I've been saying all day: "Hillary is Jake LaMotta, Obama is Ray Robinson."
Excuse the Russian translation, this is the best clip I could find.
"Hey, Barack -- you never knocked me down, Barack. I never went down."
Here's the site I like.
Let me say that we are seeing some pretty "Republican weather" in Cuyahoga today. Sleet, freezing rain, regular liquid rain, etc. The high was 30 F all day. Beautiful.
Geauga, Hancock and Pickaway all going for Hillary and McCain. It doesn't mean a whole lot... Pickaway (any way!) and Hancock counties are both in BFE. Geauga is maybe a little more representative and had a pretty strong Democrat turnout and it might prove to be a bellwether for the state. We'll see.
I suppose I won't get sued for stealing an ad, will I? I mean, I'm running it for free, right?
Cool. Click here to buy it while supplies last! Congrats, Mr. G.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre has decided to hang it up. Favre's legendary career spanned 17 years, including 253 consecutive regular season starts, an NFL record.
Favre led the Packers to a Super Bowl victory in 1996 and holds virtually every major passing record. In his career, Favre threw for 61,655 yards and 442 touchdowns, both NFL records. No quarterback led his team to more victories (160).
"He has had one of the greatest careers in the history of the National Football League, and he is able to walk away from the game on his own terms. Not many players are able to do that," the team said in a statement. "The Packers owe him a tremendous debt of gratitude. He has given Packers fans 16 years of wonderful memories, a Super Bowl championship among them, that will live on forever."
It is hard to imagine a Packers game without Brett Favre. He is one of the most beloved athletes in the country. Favre will surely be a first-ballot Hall of Famer and will go down as one of the best quarterbacks ever.
Seventeen years is a long time to do anything. Good luck to the man and hopefully he won't turn into a goofball like Terry Bradshaw did.
It began last week, when Canada’s CTV television network reported that, in early February, a representative of the Obama campaign assured Canadian officials that they need not take Obama’s NAFTA threats seriously, that those threats were just political rhetoric intended to win Midwestern primaries. The campaign, and the Canadian government, initially denied everything. “The Canadian ambassador issued a statement saying that the story was absolutely false,” top Obama adviser Susan Rice said Thursday night on MSNBC. “There had been no such contact. There had been no discussions on NAFTA.” Obama himself, asked about the story the next day, said, “It did not happen.”
But it turned out that there had been contact, and something did indeed happen. Later news reports identified the Obama adviser as Austan Goolsbee, a professor of economics at the University of Chicago who serves as a senior adviser to the Obama campaign. Those reports said Goolsbee met with officials at the Canadian consulate in Chicago, where the NAFTA discussion allegedly took place.
Can we tell one group of people one thing, and another group the opposite? YES, WE CAN!! Clintonian denials continued....
On Friday, The New York Observer reached Goolsbee himself. “It is a totally inaccurate story,” Goolsbee said. “I did not call these people.”
Then a report from the Associated Press pulled the rug out from under Obama. The report cited a memo written as a record of the February 8 meeting between Goolsbee and a man named Georges Rioux, the Canadian consul general in Chicago. The document was written by Joseph DeMora, a consulate staffer who was in the meeting.
“Noting anxiety among many U.S. domestic audiences about the U.S. economic outlook, Goolsbee candidly acknowledged the protectionist sentiment that has emerged, particularly in the Midwest, during the primary campaign,” the memo said, according to AP. “He cautioned that this messaging should not be taken out of context and should be viewed as more about political positioning than a clear articulation of policy plans.”
The italics are mine; it's my favorite part of the whole article. It should be stressed that the word "messaging" means "something which came out my mouth but which is neutral in terms of its veracity." Sort of like the word "content" which makes no claim as to the talent of any given "content provider".
Finally, the Obama spokesperson "gives ground" after the denials with an "OK, but..."
Finally, Plouffe said that, whatever was said, Goolsbee had not spoken to the Canadians as a representative of the Obama campaign. “This was not a formal meeting,” Plouffe said. “This was essentially a tour, and Austan was approached not as a member of our campaign but as a university professor.”
So now the Canadians are being insulted just like them Midwesterners. We sent an American professor up there to give you Canuks a little Econ lesson. York's conclusion:
After talking with people knowledgeable about these events, it’s possible to come to a few early conclusions. One, there was a meeting. Two, the DeMora memo was a good-faith effort to record what went on at that meeting. Three, the conversation did touch on NAFTA. Four, the Canadian government’s statement was a carefully worded, diplomatic message that did not shed any light on whether the key accusation against the Obama campaign — that it privately hedged its position on NAFTA and then misled the public about it — is true. And five, the Canadian statement did say outright that Goolsbee was contacted because he was involved in the Obama campaign, not — as Plouffe claimed — because he was a university professor.
Obviously I have no idea how this will play out in the Ohio primary because I can't fathom the mind of a Democrat voter or a Union worker. I read somewhere that NAFTA helped create something like 250,000 high-paying jobs in NE Ohio since 1994, so not everybody sees it as a ghoulish monster. But like I said, I have no idea and I'm not on the Democrat robo-call list.
Monday, March 3, 2008
Lili Haydn adds romantic and sexual imagery to go with the religious frenzy of the the Obama campaign.
Barack Obama is inspiring us like a desert lover, a Washington Valentino. We who have felt apathetic, angry at two (likely) stolen elections, K-Street hegemony, the "pornography of the trivial" in journalism and culture; we who are heartbroken over a war we knew was wrong, we who thought (especially after Baby Bush got in a 2nd time) that America got what it asked for; we who stopped wanting to participate 'cause it doesn't matter whether we do or don't; we have a crush. We're talking about it; we're getting involved, we're tuning in and turning out in numbers we haven't seen in ages. My musician friends and I are writing songs to inspire people and couples all over America are making love again and shouting "yes we can" as they climax!
How absurd. Here's the original link. I will feel proud of these people for the first time in my adult life if they all take a cold shower. Separately of course.
An Opus Dei priest emailed me the following short meditations to try to live each day of the month of March.
The following list is offered as a suggestion for increasing one's personal devotion to St. Joseph. On each day of the month of March, one could consider St. Joseph:
1. Foster Father of Jesus, the Son of God, help me to give my life, as you did, in the service of God.
2. Spouse of Mary, the Mother of God, inspire in me the desire to draw closer to Mary, my Mother.
3. Patron of the universal Church, obtain for me the grace to be a loyal son/daughter of my mother, the Church.
4. Patron of workers, teach me to sanctify my ordinary daily tasks, my work.
5. Patron of a happy death, may I know how to live each day as if it were to be my last.
6. Patron of the home, bless all the families in the world, make Christian homes bright and cheerful.
7. Master and Teacher of the interior life, help me to grow daily in awareness of the presence of God.
8. Master and Teacher of personal prayer, help me to learn the ways of sincere, deep and pious prayer.
9. Master and Teacher of the sanctification of work, show me how to convert my work into an offering to God for the salvation of souls.
10. Most humble, teach me to be like you: meek and humble of heart, relying on God for everything.
11. Most responsible, may I know how to put greater effort into everything.
12. Most loyal, may I know how to be ever loyal to God, the Church, my family and country.
13. Most faithful in the fulfillment of God's will, help me to say "fiat" (be it done) to all that God asks of me.
14. Most serene in the face of contradictions and hardships, obtain for me the grace I need to accept my daily cross.
15. Most patient in trials, help me to fight against anger and to be patient.
16. Most obedient to the divine Will, help me to know the Will of God and to carry it out promptly.
17. Most just, teach me to live not only justice but charity in all my dealings with others.
18. Most docile instrument of the Holy Spirit, make me ever more receptive to his inspirations.
19. Most faithful, help me to fulfill my commitment of love for God, the Church and all souls.
20. Model of fortitude, obtain for me the strength of character I need to be patient and persevering.
21. Model of all who love Jesus and Mary, may I learn to perform all my actions out of the purest love
for Jesus and Mary.
22. Model of perfection in little things, may I seek to please my Father God in each thing I do.
23. Ardent lover of Jesus and Mary, may I always be with the three of you.
24. Fervent lover of the whole of creation, help me to love what is good in the world.
25. Fervent lover of God's glory, make me zealous for the glory of God.
26. Fervent lover of things temporal and eternal, teach me to use with moderation the things of this world so that I might obtain eternal goods.
27. Generous cooperator in God's plan of Redemption, help me to work to make the fruits of Christ's Redemption superabundant.
28. Attentive to serving God in all things big and small, help me to see the value of hidden and silent sacrifice.
29. Totally dedicated to pleasing God in every moment, help me to sanctify the duty of each moment.
30. Constant in good works, help me to persevere and to lay the last stones in my work.
31. Father to all who call upon you, heed my requests.
Just got an Amazon update about a forthcoming book, "Answering the New Atheism: Dismantling Dawkins' Case Against God". The authors are Scott Hahn and Benjamin Wiker, both eminent Ph. D theologians with the St. Paul Institute in Steubenville.
Being very familiar with the apologetic work of Dr. Hahn, I expect the answers this book offers to be definitive and compelling yet compassionate, a "mercy killing" if you will, carried out upon the undead corpse of the "New Atheism", a monster assembled from dead ideas and re-animated by the mad Doc Frankensteins of our era.
Starting at 9:00PM this Thursday, I'll be doing my annual Lenten retreat. I'll be back on Sunday evening. Maybe Mark can fill in with a few posts if he's not to busy having fun with his whole law school thing.
I'll also be praying for your immortal souls and I beg for your prayers also. Pray for my wife to -- she'll be stuck with four male children who possess a fair share of my bad traits.
A lot of emails have gone back and forth between some of my readers and I regarding the Pew religion study which showed a drop in church membership for Catholics in the United States.
I don't really have a reaction to the decrease in numbers per se. I'm sure there's an exciting story behind the numbers, but I really don't savor the idea of reading the study. Personally, I try to remind myself that I need to be a better Catholic and that if I was more devout then more people would convert as a consequence. I also have to present the faith to my children in every moment, mainly through my actions and "sometimes using words" as St. Francis said. Actually, the Orthodox priest, Father Seraphim Rose, went even further and taught that, "If we would live our faith more deeply, we would need to speak of it less." I think Orthodox and non-Orthodox alike could benefit from following this maxim in regards to the numbers in this Pew Study and speculation of why Catholic Bishops hold the views on immigration that they do.
Furthermore, I don't think everybody in the Catholic church is getting much out of it. As an example of this, Andrew Sullivan just posted a "bite my pillow" rant from someone who left the Catholic Church for some Episcopalian weak tea:
In the past six months, the diocese of Minneapolis Saint Paul has also eliminated a lay preaching program that brought trained, diverse voices to supplement the preaching of priests -- particularly in under served rural areas. In addition, they've banned communal services of reconciliation. We expect more of the same when the new, even more conservative bishop-in-waiting takes over in May.
My friend was up there about 3 years ago. He said that diocese needed a good scrubbin'. Anyway, the rant continues...
The conclave that Wills had such high hopes for elected Benedict XVI, a gifted teacher who doesn't appear to have any friends among ideas that emerged after the Counter Reformation. At least for the next few decades, the group of bishops appointed by John Paul II will maintain the outmoded system of seminary education and will allow reactionary leadership to be self-perpetuating. I wonder what Wills would say today about the prospects for change? I suspect the hierarchy will be content to continue losing non-conservative Catholics in the U.S. if they're replaced by Hispanics; see this week's Pew survey. Conservative positions on liturgy, faith and morals will make it easier for Benedict to reunify with the Orthodox and the Society of St. Pius X and to compete with Islam in Africa; I don't think he cares overly much about ecumenism with the Protestant denominations represented by the World Council of Churches or with the Jews, and he appears to see Islam as an adversary.
I've been worshipping in an Episcopal parish for the last two years. When my Catholic friends ask me what I would need to see to come back, I usually answer: women at the altars; gays and lesbians worshipping openly with their children in the pews; and everyone gets invited to Communion. Vatican II theology and ecclesiology are alive and well among the Episcopalians, but I don't expect to see it emerge again in the Catholic Church in my lifetime (I'm 51).
I couldn't suppress a chuckle after finishing. The reasons this person left are probably a lot of the same reasons that I signed up. The great "scandal" to this person is leadership by "reactionaries", i.e., leaders faithful to the traditions of the Church. Obviously this person doesn't understand Vatican II and probably should start with Lumen Gentium for some serious discussion of Catholic ecclesiology.
I feel bad for this person, but not for the Mystical Body of Christ which, like other bodies, might need to shed a few pounds of dead weight now and again.
I've also met more than a few Catholics that have been where this person was at before he or she left and who took a different turn. They decided to study why the Catholic Church teaches what it does about issues such as homosexuality and the male priesthood and what is important for our salvation, not how to make everybody feel comfortable. As a result, these folks became more committed, not less. Others like this Sullivan reader don't want to do this, they'd rather see the Church as not living up to their standards. For this reason also I'm not so keen on throwing blame at "the bishops" specifically, although as I said earlier, we Catholics could all be doing a better job.