Thursday, March 15, 2012

Moonage Daydream, Part II

Newt Gingrich is our man! Go Newt!!!!

NEVER MIND the $10,000 he once offered to Texas Governor Rick Perry. Mitt Romney’s best bet to win the Republican presidential nomination is Newt Gingrich’s ego.

Since Iowa, Gingrich and Rick Santorum have been fighting for the right to take on Romney as the one and only true conservative in the 2012 contest. The trouble is, they are still fighting each other.

As of Tuesday, it’s a tougher case than ever for Gingrich to make. He has only two primary victories, one in South Carolina and one in his home state of Georgia. What’s his rationale for staying in the race after losing to Santorum in Alabama and Mississippi? If the cause is conservatism, there is none. But if the cause is Gingrich, that’s a different story. As long as Gingrich looks in the mirror and sees a serious presidential candidate with Secret Service protection instead of an entertaining speaker on the banquet circuit, he will continue to divide primary voters to Romney’s advantage.

Keep going, Newt! I mean, at this point you have more than twice as many delegates as Ron Paul and John Huntsman COMBINED! The campaign will make it to the moon in no time.

Mark Shea brags about his latest raise

This would be sort of funny if it weren't a grown man leaving the comment. The comment was left yesterday by Mark Shea on a blog called Coalition for Fog which was highly critical of Shea's positions but which had been shut down about 3 years ago.

Wow. Hard to believe it's been four years! And here the Coalition for Fog sits like the rusting hulk of the Bismarck on the floor of the blogospheric ocean. Good times! Good times!

Just thought I'd drop in and invite you all to celebrate the raise I got from Patheos since my traffic is going up. Salud!

Maybe somebody will find this site in a century or so when they are researching the self-destruction of American conservatism. I'll leave this note, sort of like a small commemorative plaque.

Mark Shea

Whenever I have good fortune, like a raise, I generally share my good fortune with my friends, not with those whom I dislike. I really wouldn't see the point of that, nor would most people, I imagine. Just a peek into a man's mind who's always raving about how he's just trying to bear witness to Jesus.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Just for the record

Today will mark the third time which I have unsubscribed from one of Rick Santorum's email blast lists. It doesn't really bother me too much, and I understand what is going on. He is buying my name and email address from different organizations (Weekly Standard, Ohio Republican Party, NRCC, etc.) and he doesn't have enough funds to hire someone to perform simply de-duplication services. No doubt this is the mark of a truly true true conservative who is so conservative that he is running an underfunded campaign.

In other election news....

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

International Sustainability Kool-aid from Prince Charles

I promised a post on this intersection of crunchiness and royalty, so I'm delivering on that, albeit a little late. Excerpt from Prince Charles's remarks:

With so much growing concern about this, my International Sustainability Unit carried out a study into why sustainable food production systems struggle to make a profit, and how it is that intensively produced food costs less. The answer to that last question may seem obvious, but my ISU study reveals a less apparent reason. It looked at five case studies and discovered two things: firstly, that the system of farm subsidies is geared in such a way that it favors overwhelmingly those kinds of agricultural techniques that are responsible for the many problems I have just outlined; and secondly, that the cost of that damage is not factored into the price of food production. Consider, for example, what happens when pesticides get into the water supply. At the moment, the water has to be cleaned up at enormous cost to consumer water bills; the primary polluter is not charged. Or take the emissions from the manufacture and application of nitrogen fertilizer, which are potent greenhouse gases. They, too, are not costed at source into the equation.

I'm laughing about the entire thing, including the comments, and I really don't know where to begin. First of all: check out the first sentence of the blog post: "In the next issue of TAC, I’ll have an essay about the Prince of Wales as a Traditionalist." Gee, can't wait until that comes out.

Also: here's a royal guy who probably never gets his hands dirty talking about organic farming and how all those big, bad corporations are doing it ALL WRONG. Prince Charles states: "as things stand, doing the right thing is penalized." What is the right thing? The elephant in the middle of the room to me is that these food fascists want to make a lot of money doing their organic thing and they can't because their inability to crack into the market. This whole thing about environmental cost is a big bunch of blather. Industrial farms and slaughterhouses have to spend beaucoups bucks on pollution control, that all gets factored in to the final cost. And their product is still cheaper. And I know what I'm talking about here; federal inspectors live at large meat-packing plants.

Another reason I'm laughing at the whole conversation involving Prince Charles and food is that I recall a really funny segment of Michael Savage that I heard several years ago when he used to be on WHK. Savage was going off on one of his many food tangents (Savage was a published nutritionist before he started doing whatever it is he does on the radio.) The topic was about how Prince Charles would sit downstairs, constipated with expensive French cheese, while his wife, Princess Diana, would bang her lovers upstairs. Then he riffed on this whole tragic speculation until a conspiracy nut called stating that Diana's murder was somehow related to Prince Charles's desire to join the Eastern Orthodox Church. I just shook my head and shorted at the time, but I should have known that this all was somehow related to crunchy conservatism.

Comment away, Pikkumatti.

Contractors: Please Call Me Back

Here's a note to contractors: PLEASE CALL ME BACK. You can call me back in a day, or 2, or in a week if you're on vacation. But I think you could at least take the time to send me a message like the following:

Dear Pauli,
I got your message, and I'm responding to let you know that I do not want to do any work for you. Please call a competitor of mine.

If you must know why I don't want your job, there are multiple reasons. For starters, I hate you. I hate your wife and brat kids also. I hate your cars and your house and the color you picked for the living room. I would hate your dog if you had one, and I hate everybody in your family.

Loser Contractor

This would be so refreshing that I'd probably send you flowers and thank you for the timely response. I would also recommend your services to my friends, at least the ones who aren't allergic to intense hatred, and just remind them to not mention who referred you to them.

But you haven't responded to over four calls. Maybe you're on a bender, or have the standard combination of lethargy and apathy common to tradesmen. But you've been putting up Tweets on your inane Twitter page this whole time to your 32 followers, so I don't know why you can't briefly call me to officially decline my work.

Oh, yeah, I was meaning to ask you—did you find it as amusing as I did when I called you using *67 and you accidentally picked up? I heard the irritation in your voice when you realized it was me and hastily said "I'll call you back." I'll bet you could fool a lie detector easily; you lie effortlessly. But you learned your lesson and have once again realized the indispensability of Caller ID. How did slackers survive before that wondrous technology? Oh, yeah, secretaries. I forgot.

At this point I have no other choice but to give you a bad grade on Angie's List. My guess is that you don't care about that, but I suppose I'll never know since you won't call me.

Monday, March 12, 2012

In case you missed Mark Shea's comments

I blogged a few days back on Joe Hippolito's FPM piece entitled A Catholic Writer’s Propaganda For Iran. The Catholic writer mentioned is Mark Shea who must have read both Joe's article and my blog post because he showed up in my comment box to exercise his 1st amendment rights which are universally respected here.

In fact, I want to make sure no one missed these comments, so I've reprinted them here. Here's the first one:

And EWTN/NCR has the bulging file of deranged rants from Joe [Hippolito], screaming at them about how the Church is damned by God, JPII is in hell, everybody Joe hates needs to be put to death with extreme prejudice and go to hell, nuking Muslims and Japanese is the will of God, Jesus loves capital punishment and pre-emptive war, the bishops are all going to hell, as well as many of NCR's writes (especially Yr Obdt Svt) and all his other helpful contributions to Catholic political thought over the years. I'm sure they will be on the edge of their seats listening to your appeal that they heed his wisdom. :)

Note the smiley at the end. Kind of a nice touch.

Second: Um, Joe has never had a blog. He parasitically lives off the blogs of others. If, by "doing things to people" you mean "not allowing rude wahoos on my blog" that's true. If you mean I never allow disagreements on my blog, you are either illiterate, stupid, or a liar, Jonathan.

On the other hand, I've never suggested that people who disagree with me should be murdered or prayed for their death and damnation. Joe's done that multiple times with me. Enjoy your bedfellow.

"Enjoy your bedfellow." Should we laugh at this remark? I did when I read it. Even if Mr. Shea does have some claim against Mr. Hippolito we can note something instructive here. He fills his cup of scorn and derision so abundantly that it overflows and we are all invited to take a swig.

Third: I'm not a paragon of virtue. I commit the same sins as you, Kathleen (whose writing is, after all, suffused with mockery, humiliation of others, and epithets). My point is not that I am a paragon of virtue. It is that Joe's hatred of both the Church and me is legendary throughout St. Blog's and that the editors at NCR are not unaware of it, since he has subjected them to it for years. So failure to acknowledge that little detail as Pauli makes the preposterous case for the sobriety of Joe's libel is a non-starter.

OK, I have to respond seriously to the charge that I made a "preposterous case for the sobriety of Joe's libel". Words mean something, words like sobriety and libel, and if Mark doesn't think Joe's article is accurate then he can explain why, providing examples. In fact, I'm sure he has done that on his blog, but I'll let someone else verify that. Nevertheless, libel denotes deliberate untruthfulness, or at least some type of vicious deviation from the facts, neither of which can be seen in Joe's article.

For example, referring to Rick Santorum as a "Murderer for Jesus" or referring to Santorum and Romney as "aspiring war criminals" can both be called vile attacks and distortions by just about anyone in the mainstream of America. Lines describing conservatives as possessing "deathless neoconservative faith in the Immaculate Conception of the State of Israel and its preservation from all sin, both original and actual" can easily be used as evidence for Joe's position that Mark Shea is at best a "curmudgeon who shoots from the hip and fails to understand the implications of his ideas" and at worst a "bigoted fanatic".

Now as far as sobriety goes, that's a judgement call, and I see nothing about the article which resembles a drunken rant. If Joe ranted at another time and another place without sobriety that is not relevant to my point and the point of Joe's article. It's normal and likely that past heated rhetoric may weaken his perceived reliability. But it's also a good idea to take someone's reasoned criticism presented thoughtfully according to its own merits. The only people who belabor every past lapse of an individual would be "rigorism maximumists". Wow, I just came up with that phrase! Am I clever or what?

Fourth: Jonathan (and Pauli):

You are welcome to post. However, you have to obey the rules. You're in my comboxes on my suffrage as guests. Disagreement is fine (as even a cursory read of my comboxes shows). Just be polite and honest.

I wonder what my wife is making for dinner tonight... Dang! tonight's PSR, too... And that flooring guy left a message, hope it's a low quote. Oh, that totally reminds me of something else....

Again, here's a link to his blog.

Fifth: This is Kathleen *R------*, correct?

And you seriously assert that nothing you've had to say about Rod Dreher is mocking, or aimed to humiliate, or chock full of epithets? Not to mention suffused with naked contempt for the guy?


Well, I suppose we'll just have to disagree about that.

No argument that I'm a terrible witness to the faith. But I'm all I've got and Jesus says to bear witness to him, so I try. Are you saying I shouldn't try? Or are you merely saying that it's worse that I do a bad job of witnessing to the faith than that Joe is actively trying to destroy the Church while urging mass murder.

Curious priorities.

"Joe is actively trying to destroy the Church while urging mass murder." Gee, didn't realize that. Maybe we should rethink our bedfellowship with Joe. I mean that has got to be worse than actively trying to destroy the Church while advocating a local, organic diet.

I'm not going to take a lot of time defending Kathleen because she can do so pretty adequately. I imagine her reading this blog on her smartphone in the checkout line and commenting with her right thumb while the left hand packs the groceries. I do think that she is a fairly normal woman in that if you once called her a "witch queen" she might not have an entirely warm attitude toward you.

I know I mentioned the 1st amendment earlier, so I should add that 2nd amendment rights are also respected on my blog. I'll let people shoot themselves in the foot whenever they are moved to do so. And as many times.

Weigel on Obama's chutzpa

Read the whole thing. Here's a grabber:

As for the White House complaint that the bishops' conference has been politicizing this argument, well, Leo Rosten, call your office. It takes a certain kind of chutzpa (which the great popular lexicographer of Yiddish defined as "gall, brazen nerve, effrontery, presumption-plus-arrogance") for the administration to accuse men who have been calmly and intelligently defending a classic understanding of the First Amendment's free-exercise clause of playing politics. For the administration has been playing politics 24/7, assiduously trying to turn the entire debate into a bogus referendum on "women's health" while deploying Senate henchmen such as Frank Lautenberg to imply that the bishops, as supporters of the recently defeated Blunt Amendment (which would have restored the religious exemptions contained in Hillarycare), are misogynists determined to send the women of America back to "the Dark Ages . . . when women were property that you could easily control, even trade if you wanted to."

True that.

Hat tip goes to Commentarius de Prognosticis.