I almost put off posting this...
more cat pictures
Friday, June 6, 2008
VATICAN CITY, 6 JUN 2008 (VIS) - Today in the Vatican, the Holy Father received prelates from the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei, who have just completed their "ad limina" visit.
In his English-language remarks to the prelates, the Pope pointed out that their visit to Rome coincides with preparations for the Pauline Year, and he invited them to follow the example of that Apostle, "outstanding teacher and courageous witness to the truth of the Gospel".
"The Church's faith in Jesus is a gift received and a gift to be shared; it is the greatest gift which the Church can offer to Asia", said the Pope quoting the Apostolic Exhortation "Ecclesia in Asia". And he went on: "Happily, the peoples of Asia display an intense yearning for God. In handing on to them the message that you also received, you are sowing the seeds of evangelization in fertile ground.
"If the faith is to flourish, however", he added, "it needs to strike deep roots in Asian soil, lest it be perceived as a foreign import, alien to the culture and traditions of your people. Mindful of the manner in which St. Paul preached the Good News to the Athenians, you are called to present the Christian faith in ways that resonate with the 'innate spiritual insight and moral wisdom in the Asian soul', so that people will welcome it and make it their own".
The Holy Father proceeded with his discourse to the bishops: "In particular, you need to ensure that the Christian Gospel is in no way confused in their minds with secular principles associated with the Enlightenment. On the contrary, by 'speaking the truth in love' you can help your fellow citizens to distinguish the wheat of the Gospel from the chaff of materialism and relativism. You can help them to respond to the urgent challenges posed by the Enlightenment, familiar to Western Christianity for over two centuries, but only now beginning to have a significant impact upon other parts of the world. While resisting the 'dictatorship of positivist reason' that tries to exclude God from public discourse, we should welcome the 'true conquests of the Enlightenment' - especially the stress on human rights and the freedom of religion and its practice".
"This Pauline apostolate", said Pope Benedict, "requires a commitment to inter-religious dialogue, and I encourage you to carry forward this important work, exploring every avenue open to you. I realise that not all the territories you represent offer the same degree of religious liberty, and many of you, for example, encounter serious difficulties in promoting Christian religious instruction in schools".
"In the context of open and honest dialogue with Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, and the followers of other religions present in your respective countries, you assist your fellow citizens to recognise and observe the law 'written on their hearts' by clearly articulating the truth of the Gospel.
"In this way, your teaching can reach a wide audience and help to promote a unified vision of the common good. This in turn", the Pope concluded, "should help to foster growth in religious freedom and greater social cohesion between members of different ethnic groups, which can only be conducive to the peace and well-being of the entire community".
AL/.../MALAYSIA:SINGAPORE:BRUNEI - VIS 080606 (550)
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Finally finished Jonah's book Liberal Fascism yesterday, which worked out perfectly since I just received another book, What I'd Say to the Martians by Jack Handey, for my birthday. Much lighter I have to say, and if you are a fan of Handey's "deep thoughts", this is a must read. He has extended his parody from short quips into essay-length pieces so it's sort of like reading Dave Barry only much funnier. I was literally crying with laughter at the chapter entitled "The Animals All Around us", but that's a-whole-nuther topic. Obviously if you hate Jack Handey and deep thoughts you'll hate his new book and you probably hate this blog, so maybe you should go stick pins in your eyeballs or something.
Anyway, found this to be very insightful from one of Jonah's astute readers:
Finally, you connect fascism with some version of nationalism. I have thought long about this connection, first suggested perhaps by the notion of "socialism in one country". And there is a tight connection, stemming from the fact that socialism doesn't work. So a state which adopts fascism will find itself slowly falling behind other states. In commerce, science, and culture, it will eventually become a laggard. What will be the defense against unflattering comparisons, not to mention increasing poverty as it loses in economic competition? Nationalism: restraints on trade and other exposure to wicked competitors. So fascism and nationalism really are siblings. But here is a major difference between today's liberal fascism and earlier varieties. Liberal fascism despises its own country. This one variation is a major departure from the fascisms of the twentieth century. Also, it will probably be the undoing of today's liberal movement.
Emphasis mine. It was amazing to me, for example, how much Woodrow Wilson hated the congress because the legislative process slowed down "progress". But, dude, that's part of the balance of power! He also wanted to rewrite the constitution. So I guess it's fair to say he despised America as he found it and wanted "radical change" like his descendants including Hillary and Obama.
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
My paternal grandfather grew up in West Virginia and he told a joke that blows Cheney's remark away like a Perazzi-Brescia 28-gauge taking down an unfortunate quail.
"The definition of a virgin in West Virginia," he quipped, "is a girl who can outrun her brothers."
West Virginia humor is just one more piece of the Americana we know and love, to be filed alongside Elvis impersonators, pork chops on sticks at the county fair and "honoring" people by making bobble-head dolls in their likeness. But I don't suppose the VP ought to engage in public WV-baiting even if he is retiring from politics and his over-under is close at hand. Some of the knee-jerk Victorian class may be offended.
Only a Crunchy Conservative can start out a knee-jerk blog post with "Look, I like Ben Stein," and end it with "If I were his wife, I'd be upstairs knocking back tequila too." Chalk up another knee-jerk for the already huge pile of involuntary crunchy muscle spasms.
Also, I don't know what is so "condescending" about Stein's piece. I certainly don't buy Dreher's insinuation that Stein's gratitude is cheap. Stein writes
There is simply not enough time and blood in this world to thank these people and their families adequately. It is not the President who keeps us free, not the Congress, not the press, not the courts. It is the men and women who offer up their lives for us.
which is his way of saying that gratitude isn't enough, but sometimes it's all we have to offer.
If you click on the full comments link, you can read Victor Morton's sane responses to the ranting boy. You should click on this link, too, since as we know, Rod likes lots of visits. "Y'all come back now!" -- and all that.
Anyway, A week ago I saw a woman whose husband and son are on their second tour in Iraq. She is a very religious person, saintly even, and I'm sure she prays for their safety continually. When she talks you can tell she's proud of what they're doing over there, not angry. But then again, she's not in the condescending journalist class.
This came to mind, for obvious reasons:
Thus you shall have the glory of the illumination of all the world, and all obscurity will fly far from you.
This is the power of all strength--it overcomes every subtle thing and penetrates every solid substance.
This was the means of the creation of the world.
In the future wonderful adaptations will be achieved, and this is the way.
I am Hermes the Threefold Sage, so named because I hold the three elements of all wisdom. And thus ends the revelation of the work of the Sun.
(from the Emerald Tablet of Hermes Trismegistus)
RIP, Mr. D.
Monday, June 2, 2008
Our favorite Bostonian blogger is covering the Ted Kennedy news so I don't have to. Heah's a teasa:
The second-biggest loser in Ted Kennedy's tragic turn of fate is Deval Patrick, who, thanks to a 2004 law change designed to prevent Mitt Romney from nominating John Kerry's replacement to the Senate, gets to do nothing but sit back and cast his one stupid vote just like the rest of us schmucks.
Al Gore might have invented the Internet, but Warhol obviously envisioned it years earlier in his famed "fifteen minutes of fame" remark. So now Ms. Christian is famous for being the typical "woman scorned", and that by the Democratic Party. She needs a book deal, IMO. $100,000.00 advance, baby.
I was just looking at the context of the oft-quoted passage from Congreve's Mourning Bride; the first line could serve as a title here: "Vile and ingrate! too late thou shalt repent!!"
HT Moue Magazine which also provided this transcript:
I’m proud to be an older American woman. (Reporter: Where are you from?) New York City- Hillary’s state. The best nominee that’s possible. And the Democrats are throwing the election away. For what? An inadequate black male? Who would not have been running had it not been a white woman that was running for president. And I’m not going to shut my mouth anymore. I can be called white but you can’t be called black. That’s not my America! It’s equality for all of us. It’s about time we all stood up for it.
I’m no second class citizen. And God Damn the Democrats! (Reporter 2: Where are you from?) I’m from Manhattan. (Reporter: Could I get your name?) I just said my name. Why? Why do you want my name? Maybe you’re the CIA or the FBI? We couldn’t even find out where this convention was being held. (Reporter mumbles something, has the woman spell her name) I came here for the vote of every American. And our Democratic party threw us down the tubes. I was a second class citizen before. Now I’m nothing. Why? Because they wanna do what they wanna do. And they think we won’t turn and vote for McCain. Well, I’ve got news for all of you. McCain will be the next president of the United States.
I laughed at some of the Youtube comments. One idiotic Obama supporter smeared her with "She's not white, she's a Jew." Nice. I thought, wow, what an unfortunate last name for a Jewish person. Then I realized that to this bozo if you have a New York accent then you must be Jewish. That person probably learned this from watching Harvey Keitel play Judas in the "Last Temptation of Christ" and no doubt thinks everyone in Israel talks like that.