Wednesday, November 29, 2006

selfish charity

A great post over at the Crowhill Weblog, The selfish guide to charity.
 
It is something that I have also gone round and round with myself on this. I have handed out several dollars to one guy after I won the office football pool. Another time a guy approached me when I was in the drive thru. I said no thanks, but then bought an extra burger and drove round to give it to him. He didn’t seem too excited about the burger.
 
The comment by Mystagogue puts a great finishing touch on the article.  We should give despite the potential for the gift to be abused.  Why?  Simply put, Justice is God's, Mercy is ours.  We abuse our gifts from God (and we have been given more so more will be expected) more often than the beggar or homeless guy.

Diversity on diversity

CELEBRATE DIVERSITY:
CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS

The United States is 85 percent Christian, which means we are more Christian than India is Hindu and Israel is Jewish. Moreover, 96 percent of Americans celebrate Christmas. So why do we have to tippy-toe around the religious meaning of Christmas every December?

There is something sick about Friendship Trees, Winter Solstice Concerts, Holiday Parades and Holly Day Festivals. The neutering of Christmas extends to the banishment of Nativity Scenes from the public square, the expulsion of baby Jesus from crèches not otherwise forbidden, the banning of red and green at school functions, the censoring of “Silent Night” at municipal concerts, etc.

All of this madness is done even though 97 percent of Americans say they are not offended by Christmas celebrations. So as not to be misunderstood, it is important to recognize that the few who are complaining do not belong to any one religious or ethnic group—there is plenty of diversity to be found among the ranks of the disaffected. No matter, fairness dictates that their intolerance should not trump the rights of the rest of us. Diversity means respect for the traditions and heritages of all groups, not just those which have been cherry-picked by the multicultural gurus.

To be excluded is normal. Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Veteran’s Day, Black History Month, Gay Pride Parades—they all exclude someone. The Olympic Games are a showcase of segregation—men are barred from women’s sports—yet not even radical feminists call it sexist. Should all of these holidays and events be banned because some feel excluded?

By celebrating Christmas we are celebrating diversity. Don’t let the cultural fascists get their way this year.

William A. Donohue
President

Talk about calling a spade a spade.  I love this line, "their intolerance should not trump the rights of the rest of us. Diversity means respect for the traditions and heritages of all groups, not just those which have been cherry-picked by the multicultural gurus."

 

Monday, November 27, 2006

Not of this world

Good to know the pope agrees.  Something about wise men thing alike? 
 
Well, never mind my feeble attempt at humor.  The pope has a bit more to say on it than I do.
On "the feast of Christ the King, and reminded the faithful, "The Cross is the 'throne' from which He demonstrated the sublime regality of God-love."

 

Missing the point

Don't you get the feeling that in this weekend's Gospel that Pontius Pilate is missing the point?  He asks if Jesus is a King, Jesus says his kingdom is not of this world, if it were, his followers would be fighting.  And so Pilate comes back, "So you are a king." 
 
Of course we have the advantage of history to set the situation against, but still, Pilate seems to be oblivious to what Jesus tells him.  Kinda like when we have our minds set and hear only what we want. 
 
So on the Feast of Christ the King, what is the point.  Is it just a rah-rah we win in the end kinda celebration to end the liturgical year.  As my priest said, "Christ the King is easy to say.  Kind of rolls off the tongue."  But his point, it isn't so easy to live.  Is Christ the King of all corners of our life?  And then he went on and listed some common failures of people.  I was nodding along thinking, yeah I know someone that could work on that, nod, nod and then he mentions one for me and I stop judging and check my own account.  Umm never mind.
 
Always good to be reminded of our own need for a savior.  Especially right before receiving the Eucharist.

 

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Monday, November 20, 2006

chip away

Slowly but surely, Pope Benedict chips away at the walls that divide. Considered by many liberals to be a divider not a uniter, Pope B. XVI shows the uniting power of truth.
This latest comes from the office of the CDF, but I am sure it wasn't without the pope's blessing or promptings.
I was hoping to find another source as CWN gets alot of anti-Vatican II commentors.

The translation of pro multis has been the subject of considerable debate because of the serious theological issues involved. The phrase occurs when the priest consecrates the wine, saying (in the current translation):

...It will be shed for you and for all so that sins may be forgiven.

The Latin version of the Missal, which sets the norm for the Roman liturgy, says:

...qui pro vobis et pro multis effundetur in remissionem peccatorum.

Critics of the current translation have argued, since it first appeared, that rendering pro multis as "for all" not only distorts the meaning of the Latin original, but also conveys the impression that all men are saved, regardless of their relationship with Christ and his Church. The more natural translation, "for many," more accurately suggests that while Christ's redemptive suffering makes salvation available to all, it does not follow that all men are saved.

The interesting thing I learned is that it wasn't just the English translations that had it wrong. So barring a total meltdown in disobedience by the bishops we should be seeing the translation soon.
For the countries where a change in translation will be required, the cardinal's letter directs the bishops to prepare for the introduction of a new translation of the phrase in approved liturgical texts "in the next one or two years."
Why even worry about such minute details? Because this is one of the large clubs used by the traditionalist factions to beat up the Church, the Pope and anyone who doesn't have Mass in Latin. Some go so far to say that any Mass in English is invalid because of the translation error. This is ludicrious of course, but this action removes another stumbling block.

Friday, November 17, 2006

the message

One wonders if the Republicans received the message delivered on election night. Seems they might have, at least they have learned to act like they are listening. While the Democrats think they have the mandate to get even more radical, the Republicans are reshaping their leadership to attract the religious conservatives once again.
The House GOP selected their top two leaders and both have 100% pro-life voting records.
The Senate GOP's new top man is Sen. Mitch McConnell, another with a 100% pro-life record. The number two, Trent Lott is pro-life on abortion but sadly has voted for the embryonic stem cell research.
And even Bush is getting into the act, appointing Dr. Eric Keroack as assistant secretary of the Department Health and Human Services. And as Dom has pointed out, not only is he pro-life but anti-contraception as well.

And the democrats, well here is my thought on their post-campaign promises. My thoughts in Bold.
"With integrity, civility, and fiscal responsibility as our guide, Democrats intend to move forward with the agenda for change on which we were elected. We will:

•Make America safer by implementing the recommendations of the 9/11 commission.
- Their recommendation? Be safe out there!

•Make our economy fairer by raising the minimum wage and ending taxpayer subsidies for sending jobs overseas.
- With a higher minimum wage, Taxpayer subsidies will no longer be necessary to drive jobs overseas

•Make college more affordable by cutting the interest rates on student loans.
- more "lifer" college students means lower unemployment rates too. Double chaching!
- With lower interest rates, colleges can afford to charge more for even less.


•Improve healthcare by allowing Medicare to negotiate for lower prescription drug prices and promoting stem-cell research.
- pump more money into research that hasn't produced any results. Now there is science for ya. Science does its best when it pays its own way. You know, that results orientated plan? Oh wait these are politicians, they haven't worked a meaningful job in decades.

•Achieve energy independence within 10 years by investing America's energy dollars in the Midwest instead of the Middle East.
- spend more of our tax dollars to "research" what? Investing means using your own money, not mine. I'll believe their commitment when they all show up to work in the carpool lane. Driving a yugo rather than a limo.

•Guarantee a dignified retirement by improving Medicare, protecting Social Security, and making it easier to save for retirement."
- Our "dignified retirement will now start when we turn 85. But hey, more working years means more years to save for retirement.

So Ironic

Ironic Catholic is so good, even her spouse is ironically funny.  Here is If the FDA regulated the Eucharist.  Via the Curt Jester



Thursday, November 16, 2006

just be honest

As this so-called JP2 generation has come of age, religious orders have begun to reach out again to young people--and to do so in the language that young people speak.
It isn't about the language young people speak.  It is about a calling.  If the youth are seeking something, they aren't going to join an order that lives "like everyone else."  A calling, especially a calling from above will lead them to something above the average, something challenging and fulfilling.
 
As Fr. Corapi is wont to say regarding his search for a religious order.  Many bragged about how they were modern, no habits, they went to movies and bowling…
And his response was, if I wanted to be secular, why would I join a religious order?
 
As Dom points out,
I look at it like I look at most youth ministry programs. If you try too hard to compete with the secular culture you can lose what makes you distinct from it.
and he is spot on about the youth groups trying to be relevant.  That is just a numbers game.  If we look only to numbers instead of souls, we are by definition, irrelevant to the cause.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

haven't heard much of that issue

While they were pimping for ESCR, I never heard the media bring up this little issue with embryonic stem cells:
"Whilst embryonic stem cells have great potential to deliver therapies for disorders, such as diabetes, a fear has been that they will form tumors because of the presence of undifferentiated cells," Prof Tuch said.
Now that there may be a "potential", and I stress potential because of the inate honesty and integrity of those promoting this, perhaps the media will be more forthcoming regarding this little hang-up to the miracle answer to all of our modern diseases.

Happy are those indeed

The bishops have released the document on reception of the Eucharist titled, "Happy Are Those Who Are Called to His Supper".  Happy indeed.  I haven't read it yet, but it is in the printing queue to be read tonight or tomorrow.  Meanwhile, the Curt Jester has freed the document from the evil confines of the PDF format and reposted it in html.
 

What about pabulum?

Father Corapi was speaking on the virtue of Faith today.  And one of the ways to sin against Faith is the failure to protect your faith and that of your children.  So not subjecting yourself to false teachings or hanging about in a blasphemous environment. 
 
Kinda reminds me of what occurred on another blog discussion this weekend.  The religious fervor of one commenter set the left bank off on a blasphemous trail that in my mind negates any value the discussions have.  And funny how often the sin of presumption comes up in those types of discussions, assuming that there is no conversion or contrition necessary for the mercy of God to work.  Yes God loves us no matter how sinful, but if we persist in that state without contrition or sincere repentance, God's mercy is not free to work.  In other words, God's love and mercy is infinite, but we can choose to reject them.
 
But back to my original thoughts.  Obviously it is wrong to put our children in religious classes that pervert the teachings of the Christ or twist and torture them to reach the wrong conclusions.  But what about Religious Education that doesn't teach against the faith, but merely fails to inspire any interest in the faith?
 
To use an analogy, obviously it is wrong to feed them poison.  But what about feeding our children cold pabulum that soon turns them away from eating any nourishing food?  Or only feeding them light and fluffy foods that fail to satisfy the bodies real needs.  Will that not lead to starvation also?
 
So should I waste time with sending my child to a uninspiring Religious Ed class for his First Holy Communion? 

Monday, November 13, 2006

teachable moments

Dom at Bettnet has a link to an elementary school using a pre-conceived "teachable moment" to skate past the Parental Consent Law and taught 3rd graders about transvestites and sex change operations.  The "random question" from a child that prompted this "teachable moment" was brought on by a social worker describing alternatives to the traditional family.  And the social worker?
The social worker then elaborated on this "teachable moment." But this wasn't just any social worker employed by the Newton Public Schools. This was Laura Perkins, former board member of GLSEN, the Gay Lesbian and Straight Education Network; or rather, "Laura Perkins, MSW, Franklin School and the Newton Early Childhood Program," according to the GLSEN Boston Conference, where she hosted a seminar in which the "Rationale for integrating GLBT (Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender) issues in the early elementary years will be presented" and "classroom lessons demonstrated."
Yup, it was random for sure.  The topic of transgender just happened to come up when a propagandist was there to shill for the GLBTQUPCDI.  (They like to add the Q for "questioning" so I took the liberty of adding Unsure, Promiscuous, Confused and Downright Immoral)
 
And I think we have problems in Idaho because they are still pushing the seat belt issue down our throats.

Arinze encourages wider use of Latin

Something I have been hopeful of for some time, Cardinal Arinze has said Latin should be more widely used in the Novus Ordo Mass.
Latin "suits a Church that is universal. It has a stability modern languages don't have," he said.  The Cardinal also said it’s no small matter for priests or bishops from around the world to be able to speak to each other in a universal language and lauded the possibility that "a million students" gathered for World Youth Day every few years could "say parts of the Mass in Latin."

He suggested that larger parishes offer Mass in Latin at least once a week and that smaller, rural parishes offer it at least once a month.  Homilies, he said, should always be in the vernacular.

Any priest can celebrate the Vatican II “Novus Ordo” Mass in Latin,...
Of course, we shouldn't hold our breath because it is hard to pray without exhaling.

Friday, November 10, 2006

buckle up this

Need another reason to homeschool your children?  Try this one on for size.  Our one son who attends public school (he is blind and Braille ain't exactly our first language, let alone easy to learn) came home with a permission slip to attend an assembly on seat belts. (I remember those lame assemblies as a child.  I always made the point of not wearing one because these goofballs acted like they wanted to "protect" me.  Even as a child I could see through their BS.) 
 
Seems as though the people in charge have a great idea to promote seat belts among the kids.  They get to 'ticket' their parents if they catch them not buckling up.  The fine is 25 cents each time. 
 
What a great idea!  And I will follow that up by letting them giving me a whipping if I don't clean my plate and wash out my mouth with soap if I use a bad word.  Hey, why not just hand them the keys and say take me home son I am tired of driving. After all, you are just as responsible as I am for raising this family.
 
Whatta bunch of maroons!  My wife sent the slip back saying he did not have permission to attend.  I told her it was a good thing the slip was already gone.  My terminology for saying no would have ended me up in the bathroom chewing on the soap bar. 


Hapy Vetrans day

Of course, all those who weren't "stuck" in the military will recognize the misspelled words.  But in honor of our Veterans, I figured I would post this a day early to give them extra time to read it.
 
But seriously, my heartfelt thanks to the many veterans I know and the thousands I don't know.  I wish my family and friends that have served could have been there last night.  Been there at my son's school for the Veteran's day program.  (Yes we homeschool, except for our 9 year old blind son.)
 
Being fairly skeptical of public schools, I went without much expectations.  But this program almost renewed my faith in them.  (Almost.  See the next item)  While we waited, they played patriotic songs sung by children including "God Bless America".  The principal welcomed everyone as the 3rd grade class filed in.  Then he did the best thing possible and sat down, leaving the rest of the night to the kids.  Perhaps that was what made it so special, no adults yammering their views, no one telling us what a 'real' patriot is; just the kids putting on a program to thank the veterans.
 
My son got to come out following the pledge and the singing of "The National Anthem".  He belted out his opening line, "Please be seated."  He loves the mike and made the most of the rest of his part.
 
That made a dad proud, but then I was plain flabbergasted by the rest of the program.  The kids sang "God Bless America" and other patriotic songs.  Then they invited the Vets to come up, and not just the select VFW that paraded in, carrying their parade guns of all things.  Wonder how they got those past the "gun free zone" signs.  But all the Vets in the crowd came up to a standing ovation.  Each in turn introduced himself (and herself for the one female) ending with the guy that had just returned from Iraq.
 
They each got a handmade ribbon from some of the students. 
 
The program ending with a moving slide show with some 9/11 pictures of the firemen at the WTC.  I had a tear in my eye from it all.  The kids did a rousing rendition of "Proud to be an American" to end it.
 
Wow was all I could think.  So, for those who have the chance, get yourself to an event to commemorate the Veterans.  It isn't the same just sitting at home being thankful, being in the presence of men and women who have sacrificed to protect our freedom really brings it home.  I must say as I watched the Vets all walk to the front of the gym to the ovation, a part of me was sad that I hadn't made that same sacrifice.  Granted my chance was during peace time and I had looked at the National Guard, but still it saddened me a bit to know I wasn't among those who stood up to serve.  So thank you from the bottom of my heart.

on the bright side

A couple items of humor from Scrappleface, via Crowhill
 

10. New York Times and CNN will carry much less negative news about Congress.
9. Rhode Island Republican Sen. Lincoln Chafee lost and Connecticut Democrat Sen. Joe Lieberman won, a net gain of two for the GOP.
8. We may finally get to see the Democrat plan for victory in Iraq.
7. Taxpayers will be relieved of the burden of making so many investment decisions.
6. Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum is now available for Supreme Court appointment.
5. Possible reduction in attacks on our troops in Iraq, since terrorists fear attorneys.
4. NSA agents could soon be freed from having to listen to annoying terrorist chatter.
3. Lynn Swann will be remembered as a great wide receiver during the Pittsburgh Steelers 1970s dynasty.
2. Since a lot of the polling places are in church buildings, millions of Democrats actually went to church yesterday.
1. C-Span could get a ratings boost for new reality show: Impeachment 2007

In addition, the president noted that “millions of American Democrats will sleep more peacefully now that they are assured that Karl Rove doesn’t control everything.”

Presumptive House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, at a secret news conference in an undisclosed location, said, “This is a vision that springs from the heartland of the new America, and we intend to take these San Francisco values out to the Bible-belt, red-state fringes of the South and Midwest.”
 
“What’s good for San Francisco is good for the nation,” she said, “And it’s about time our country got back to the fundamentals which shaped a generation of trans-decent folks living here in America’s garter belt.”

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Bio-dethics

 
Whatever happened to the "it will never lead to that" argument?  This is incredible.

Britain's Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecology has put forth a proposal calling for the active euthanasia of babies born with serious health problems, the Times reported Sunday.  One argument the doctors are using is that the possibility of killing newborns after birth will reduce "late abortions".

The college is arguing that medical advances which allow severely disabled babies to survive more often and with longer life spans make the option of "active euthanasia" necessary for the wellbeing of families.

"A very disabled child can mean a disabled family," the proposal said. "If life-shortening and deliberate interventions to kill infants were available, they might have an impact on obstetric decision-making, even preventing some late abortions, as some parents would be more confident about continuing a pregnancy and taking a risk on outcome."

Again, the pro-death crowd treats fertility like a disease and pregnancy like a terminal side-effect.  But now they can rescue women from this horrible problem even after they have given birth.  And remember, contraception was all about freedom.  That silly old man in Rome that prophesied that it would lead to accepting abortions was full of hot air.  And those people that claim that blob of tissue is a life don't understand science.
 
And now we have progressed to this fine point of scientific deduction

Bioethics professor John Harris, with the Manchester University and a member of the government's Human Genetics Commission, said the law permitting abortion of disabled babies up until birth was reason enough to permit infanticide of disabled newborns.

"We can terminate for serious foetal abnormality up to term but cannot kill a newborn. What do people think has happened in the passage down the birth canal to make it okay to kill the fetus at one end of the birth canal but not at the other?" he said.

what, not who, we are

Greg at Crowhill puts it about as good as it can be said.

A lot of people will hear that story and it will confirm their prejudice that religious people are hypocrites, that we can’t really conquer sin, and we’d be better off if we just got over our hang-ups so we could “be who we really are.”

That’s actually not a very good idea. Yes, Rev. Haggart is a hypocrite. He preached one thing and did another.

So do I.

Greg's point is that we all are sinners.  We all fail to achieve the goal, but that isn't "who" we are.  As Pope John Paul II put it, we are not the sum of the mistakes we have made.  Sinners is what we are.  So WHO are we?  Children of God, made in his image and likeness.
 
And Greg makes a great point regarding the "be true to who you are" argument

There’s another important issue here. Everybody can agree that we should suppress angry words and laziness, and that we should teach our children to be kind and hard workers. That’s because we all agree that angry words and laziness are Bad Things. So when a person is a hypocrite on this issue, or is “suppressing who he really is,” we say “hurrah for suppressing hypocrites.”

IOW, it’s not that we mind when people suppress their bad traits. In fact, civil society requires it. If everybody did what they wanted, society would be impossible.

The world surely would be a horrible place if a bunch of sinners ran around pretending that their sin was okay.  In fact it is a horrible place because some 40-45 million babies have died because people are thinking their sin is okay.  Are they being "true" to themselves?

We modern folk have inherited a basically just and functional society and so we don’t worry or think too much about what makes one, so we’re liable to unwittingly tear the thing apart. We’re more concerned about individual rights. Things seem stable and functional, so it’s not unreasonable to think, “Quit your worrying, the world won’t end if Sam marries Harry.”

Do we really know that? Do we actually understand the implications of a change in sexual ethics?

This may be why stable societies fall apart. They forget what made them stable in the first place and, fat and happy in their affluent lives, they take a “live and let live” approach that doesn’t really work.

Ted Haggart’s religious beliefs told him to suppress his same-sex attraction. Christianity, like every other religion, believes that a just society is built on heterosexual marriage, which means (in part) channeling sexuality, and especially male sexuality, toward procreation and the nurture of offspring.

He brings out something here that isn't mentioned much.  I have railed on it a few times and have read some good articles on why a government has the need to protect and promote healthy families.  Not by over-involvement, but by certain benefits and structures.  The family is the basic block of civilization and the health of the civilization is reflective of the health of the basic family unit. 
 
Just as having a bunch of un-attached, war-mongering, single men running around would not be good for society, neither is destroying the family where healthy citizens are raised and formed.
 
-----<>-----
Regarding Mr. Haggart, I get the general feeling of sympathy.  We are all soldiers in the spiritual war.  He wasn't my general, but he put himself out front in the battle.  He made himself a bigger target and sadly was shot down in a dramatic fashion.  It can be demoralizing for the troops, but someone will pick up the banner and lead the way.  That battle may have been lost because their leader didn't have the proper armor, but the war rages on. 
 
 

Monday, November 06, 2006

courage men, courage

Our priest gave a good sermon this Sunday about the duty to vote. I wonder if the one slip-up was freudian?
He was quoting from the bishops' exhortation to vote I think and it went on about deciding by the worthiness of the candidate, not the party. "neither left nor right, conservative nor libertarian..."
Anyway, here is another sermon of a bit more rousing type on vocations. I will be keeping a copy of it to read to my boys as they come of age.

tip to the Curt Jester

The title says it all

Possible Supreme Court Retirement Shakes Up Election Last Minute

With the thought that Justice John Paul Stevens may retire, suddenly the ante has been upped.  Now I am not a Republican and I am not 100% sold on Bush's first two appointment being the best available, but to have the possibility to replace the liberal Stevens with at least a mildly constitutionalist should get some voters excited.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Pull the hat down tighter Beetle

Gerald has the goods on the latest "Halloween Family Celebration Mass" or something to that effect at Corpus Christi in California.
I love this line attributed to Father Baily in Gerald's Comments.
At Corpus Christi, we don't care where you are or what you do in your life -- that isn't who you are! Sins are like -- well, as you all well know, when you have a small child who is sick and vomits on you, you don't throw that child away. You hold him, and comfort him, and help him get better. Well, when we sin, it's like we're vomiting on Him. And His response is at least as loving as any parent's. He's not going to throw you away."
Somehow vomiting on Him is quite appropriate.  Throw in the lukewarm theology and perhaps Fr. Baily should worry about the same in return. 
I wonder if he would find it all happy and fun if someone showed up for communion dressed as a midget with his shoes attached to his knees.  Not that I would recommend using the Eucharist to make a statement, but one sometimes wonders.

Racing for the Cure (if pregnancy is a disease)

Dom points out that Diocesan newspaper for Phoenix has brought out the fact that the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation has strong ties to Planned Parenthood.  I shudder every time someone promotes the Race for the Cure.
From the Article
 A Planned Parenthood representative said some people in the community have a misconception about the organization's work.

"The reality is that over 90 percent of our work is about sexual health education and prevention of unplanned pregnancy and disease," said Melissa Fink, the organization's spokeswoman. "Last year alone, our health centers served nearly 55,000 women and men across central and northern Arizona."
I think the misconception is that they consider abortion to be "prevention" of an unplanned pregnancy.  Somehow I doubt that 90% factor excludes abortions.
 
I am glad to hear Bishop Olmstead is making a strong stand in Phoenix.

from the mouth of babes

I was flipping through a magazine last night and run across a short article on the Democrats.  It had a picture of Howard Dean and also the Demo donkey emblem.  My 18 month old, sitting on my lap, started pointing at the page. 
 
So I just casually asked, "Where is the donkey?" 
 
He responded by pointing to Howard Dean.


Thursday, November 02, 2006

pruning the branches

 
Peggy Noonan nails down the lid on the coffin for the Republicans. At least for this election. 
He was literally surefooted on the rubble that day [9/11] he threw his arm around the retired fireman and said the people who did this will hear from all of us soon.
Images like that fix themselves in the heart. They're why Mr. Bush's popularity is at 38%. Without them it wouldn't be so high.
Not exactly a ringing endorsement.

But there's unease in the base too, again for many reasons. One is that it's clear now to everyone in the Republican Party that Mr. Bush has changed the modern governing definition of "conservative."

He did this without asking. He did it even without explaining. He didn't go to the people whose loyalty and support raised him high and say, "This is what I'm doing, this is why I'm changing things, here's my thinking, here are the implications." The cynics around him likely thought this a good thing. To explain is to make things clearer, or at least to try, and they probably didn't want it clear. They had the best of both worlds, a conservative reputation and a liberal reality.

That would be two-faced in my opinion.  Or as my wife says, Bush speaks with a forked tongue.  He is the master politician.  He gets his enemies to hate him (Bush derangement syndrome is in full swing) and says exactly what his supporters want to hear.  And most can identify with the theory that anyone so hated by the liberal crowd must be doing something right. 
 
But to me, that is his greatest deception.  He has done more for the liberal ideology than Clinton did. 
"No Child Left Behind" anyone? 
 
Hillary-care?  Signed, sealed and delivered.
 
Government intrusion into everyone's lives, the un-Patriot Act and wiretapping.  These have gotten so bad that died-in-the-wool big government people sound like screaming libertarians.  And he has done all this while keeping the "enemy" seething with hatred.
 
Sounds like Noonan is expecting a bit of pruning for their own good.

Inviting criticism

Sen, Kerry's inane quotes and worse apology need no more dissection. But my former military brother sent me this well done response










And I saw this bumpersnicker at Happy Catholic

The WHOLE seamless garment

The seamless garment argument has always rang hollow, as in someone avoiding their failure in the details by talking about "the larger picture."

But I was thinking about it this morning.  Fr. Corapi mentioned a bit about it, you can hear him on 970 am in the inland northwest.  Anyway, when most mention the "seamless garment", they usually are trying to justify their support for just a few pieces of it.  But a "seamless garment" is only really seamless if it is intact.  If you tear out a chunk here and a chunk there, it isn't much of a garment.  And the only way to make it a garment again would be to sew a bunch of seams in it.
 
I think the whole seamless reference is supposed to be to Christ's garment at the crucifixion that the one soldiers won by casting lots.  But again, this was done so they didn't want to tear the garment. 
 
And furthermore, I am wondering if this "seamless garment" has been handed down throughout the generations, making me question the heredity of those in possession of this garment.