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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Bad Popes

Bonnie Erbe of US News and World Report is in high dudgeon. The Pope was remiss in handling a sexually abuse priest!

Hang the Pope!

Yada, yada, yada.

Now, as a Catholic, I want to personally thank Bonnie and company for their close attention to the Catholic Church's trials and tribulations. After all, Bonnie is very concerned for Catholic welfare. She cares about Catholics in a way that she obviously doesn't care when it comes to any other group of people.

For instance, when Carol Shakeshaft reported on the level of sexual abuse in the American public school system (400x higher in the schools than in the Church) Bonnie was silent as a lamb. For every child abused by a priest, 400 were abused by the public schools. It's actually worse than that, because the Church abuse was spread over five decades, while the school abuse is just the estimate for the last decade.

Similarly, when Yemen found it impossible to outlaw child marriage, Bonnie saw no news. There is nothing wrong with Muslims who insist that child marriage is not only legal, but laudable, because they are Muslims, after all, and we can't expect them to be decent people.

And we won't even discuss how the ritual of Jewish circumcision passes on HIV to infants, nor will we mention the higher rates of sexual abuse in Jewish or Protestant communities.

The examples could be multipled, but why bother?

None of this is news.

Furthermore, we should also recognize that it is only purest coincidence that by piling onto the Pope, the MSM are simultaneously attacking Barack Obama's most formidable political opponent apart from the Republican Party and Barack himself.

So, why does Bonnie get upset with the Pope? Because Bonnie is interested in our welfare. She cares. It brings tears to my eyes to know that she cares.

But she needn't worry. Even if Pope Benedict is eventually found to have exercised the worst possible judgment in regard to priestly sexual abusers, it's not like he's the first or the worst of the Popes to have done that. Let's reminisce a bit, shall we?

Pope Stephen VI (896-897) had a grudge against his predecessor, Pope Formosus. In order to humiliate his memory, he had Formosus’ body dug up, placed on a throne, and tried for acting improperly as a bishop. The corpse was found guilty, its three blessing fingers were cut off, it was dressed as a layman, briefly re-buried, then exhumed again and the body thrown in the Tiber. All ordinations he had performed were declared null. In gratitude for this and other actions, Pope Stephen was shortly thereafter imprisoned and strangled to death.

Pope John XII (937-964) was accused by a synod of 50 Italian and German bishops (bishops, mind you, not scurvy little reporter-babes) of sacrilege, simony, perjury, murder, adultery and incest. The conflict between the Pope’s supporters and his opponents resulted in bloodshed in the streets of Rome, some of it directly inflicted by John XII himself. Cardinal-Deacon John had his right hand cut off, Bishop Orgar of Speyer was scourged, a high palatine official lost his nose and ears. Pope John died shortly after. According to rumor, he was stricken by paralysis in the act of adultery.

Pope Benedict IX (1032-1048) was a disgrace to the Chair of Peter. Placed on the throne at about the age of 20, he was driven from office by a faction in Rome and replaced by the anti-pope, Sylvester III. Benedict managed to return the favor, driving Sylvester from office and regaining the throne, but resigning the office and selling it a short time later for a large sum of money to Gregory VI. When he repented of that bargain and tried to regain the throne from Gregory VI, the Council of Sutri convinced Gregory that he had committed the sin of simony. Gregory resigned, and Clement II was elected. Clement died shortly thereafter and Benedict seized the throne a third time. He was driven from the throne again, and Damasus II was elected in his stead. He eventually repented of all his actions, resigned the throne permanently and lived a life of penance in the Abbey of Grottaferrata until his death.

In his third book of Dialogues, Pope Victor II referred to Benedict's "rapes, murders and other unspeakable acts. His life as a Pope so vile, so foul, so execrable, that I shudder to think of it." St. Peter Damian recorded that Benedict "feasted on immorality" and that he was "a demon from hell in the disguise of a priest." He accused Benedict IX of routine sodomy and bestiality and repeated the rumor that he was said to have sponsored orgies.

Pope Urban VI (1378-1389) treated the people around him so badly that several cardinals defected, fled Rome, and attempted to elect a different pope. This began the Great Western Schism, when two different lines of men both claimed to be pope, and each was backed by a saint and doctor of the Church. Urban himself was subject to at least two attempts to assassinate or depose him, both plots hatched by cardinals of the Church.


And these are just some of the finest examples of papal depravity that could be brought forward. There are more. If you insist on being scandalized by bad popes, or leaving the Church because of a bad pope, why on earth would you choose to balk at the present contender when so many better examples of great papal sinners are available?

So, we have had bad popes. Although the evidence is still by no means clear, let us grant, for the sake of argument, that this particular pope, Benedict XVI, could be numbered with them.

So what?

As Pope St. Leo the Great (440-461) declared, in his third homily for Christmas Day, "the dignity of Peter suffers no diminution even in an unworthy successor" (cujus dignitas etiam in indigno haerede non deficit).

Even by 450 AD, less than 70 years after the Church had become the official religion of the Roman Empire, the Church had already seen anti-popes and attacks on the popes that overshadow anything the 20th or 21st century has produced. The fact that people are outraged when some evil can be attributed to a priest, bishop or even Pope is merely a demonstration that everyone holds the Church in the highest regard.

What is barely newsworthy in reference to public school teachers, what is roundly ignored when it comes to other faiths, this same conduct is considered outrageous in Catholic Faith precisely because our Faith is true and none of the others are.

The Magisterium of the Catholic Church is the sole source of moral Truth. When our leaders fail, it is a much greater failing.

"The latter are forgiven nothing", says De Maistre in his great work, Du Pape, "because everything is expected from them, wherefore the vices lightly passed over in a Louis XIV become most offensive and scandalous in an Alexander VI" (II, c. xiv).

Thanks for affirming what we already knew, Bonnie.


Monday, March 22, 2010

Would He?

According to ABC News, death threats have been made against Barack Obama on Twitter.

I am, of course, absolutely horrified... horrified, I tell you.. horrified, that anyone would have that attitude towards Our Beloved Leader.


But the contemplation of such an awful... awful, I tell you... awful sentiment sparked a musing.
No, a musing, not amusement. My muse sparkled into action. Sparkled, I say.

Now, ABC News gravely reminds us that it is a violation of federal law to threaten the life of the President.

Of course, in order to successfully prosecute the gentlemen involved, the President would have to establish that he is actually legally President.

He would have to produce a birth certificate.
No, not a certificate of live birth, an actual birth certificate.

If that checked out, he would have to explain how he fulfills the definition of "natural born citizen" given that his father was not an American citizen. Not a US citizen born in the United States, but a "natural born citizen."

There is, after all, a legal difference between being born a citizen of the United States and being a natural-born citizen of the United States.

The first requires EITHER American parents OR birth on American soil.
The second requires BOTH American parents AND birth on American soil.

So, all relevant evidence would have to be brought forward.
College transcripts and scholarships might even have to be examined.
All the documents that were never revealed would have to come out from under wraps.
All kinds of questions would have to be answered.

Yes, that's what would happen if these nefarious gentlemen... nefarious, I tell you!... nefarious gentlemen were prosecuted.

Somehow, I don't think these gentlemen will be prosecuted.

UPDATE 4/21/2010

My prophetic abilities remain intact.

1) In fact, after investigation by the Secret Service (who are required to investigate all threats against the President), neither one of the nefarious gentlemen have been prosecuted by the federal government, nor are they expected to be.

Toldja.

2) Despite Mark Shea's suggestions, the Secret Service has not even begun to hint that they will investigate me for having broken federal law.

Why would they investigate me?
Well, because Mark says I am complicit in violating federal law: conspiracy to assassinate a President!

Yes, MURDER MOST FOUL!!! (hisses....)

And I'm "coy" to boot.
I knew I was a goy, but I didn't realize I was coy.
Hmmmm.....

In any case, since Shea NEVER engages in hateful, malicious, totally absurd ad hominem attacks we know he must be right. Yet the Secret Service seems to dither.

Hmmm... again.

Could it be a.... conspiracy?

Are Secret Service agents conspiring with me against the President?
Tune in to Mark Shea's blog to find out more!
But bring your tinfoil hat, a set of earplugs, and a small towel to wipe away the spittle of his rage. He can be a "wet" speaker sometimes, if you know what I mean.

And, if you do drop by, don't forget to send him my thanks for his personal endorsement of me, "bitter writer" that I am, and two of my best-selling books!

Yes, he loved me once, before he hated me.

Or, to put it as only Ralph Waldo Emerson could, "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesman and philosophers and divines."

Exactly!

Death Panels in the Bill

Were you happy that the death panels, at least, didn't make it into the Chicago Butcher's law? Well, think again. They're in there - you just have to realize how neatly it was done:

13. If you are a physician owner and you want to expand your hospital? Well, you can’t (Section 6001 (i) (1) (B). Unless, it is located in a county where, over the last five years, population growth has been 150% of what it has been in the state (Section 6601 (i) (3) ( E)). And then you cannot increase your capacity by more than 200% (Section 6001 (i) (3) (C)).
There it is.

How does that equate to a death panel, you ask?

Simple - think about how the Baby Boomer generation is aging out, where they are aging out, and how the demographics of population growth works.

Old people don't have kids. In fact, Americans overall are barely having two children per family on average. The only places which will see 150% population growth will be areas with high illegal immigration levels.

Geographic areas with large numbers of aging Baby Boomers aren't going to have high population growth, except through immigration. And older people tend not to move hundreds or thousands of miles. They like to stay in their circle of friends, in neighborhoods they are familiar with. They tend to lack the financial means to move. When they do move, they tend to move to where other older Americans already reside.

So, population growth in areas with high numbers of Baby Boomers is simply not going to happen. Now, it is true that Florida appears to be an exception to these rules, but keep in mind that Florida gains population growth only by drawing on an entire nation's worth of the wealthiest of older Americans.

Result? Essentially, no hospital expansions will be possible in any area which has a large number of older people. As the number of aged people in an area increase, the institutions to care for them won't be permitted to increase.

If you don't live in an area with high illegal immigration, you won't have any hospital expansion, even though your aging population requires it. According to the law, as the aged population increases, the relative number of hospital beds will shrink.

But it gets better:
15. The government will extract a fee of $2.3 billion annually from the pharmaceutical industry. If you are a pharmaceutical company what you will pay depends on the ratio of the number of brand-name drugs you sell to the total number of brand-name drugs sold in the U.S. So, if you sell 10% of the brand-name drugs in the U.S., what you pay will be 10% multiplied by $2.3 billion, or $230,000,000. (Under reconciliation, it starts at $2.55 billion, jumps to $3 billion in 2012, then to $3.5 billion in 2017 and $4.2 billion in 2018, before settling at $2.8 billion in 2019 (Section 1404)). Think you, as a pharmaceutical executive, know how to better use that money, say for research and development? Tough. (Section 9008 (b)).
16. The government will extract a fee of $2 billion annually from medical device makers. If you are a medical device maker what you will pay depends on your share of medical device sales in the U.S. So, if you sell 10% of the medical devices in the U.S., what you pay will be 10% multiplied by $2 billion, or $200,000,000. Think you, as a medical device maker, know how to better use that money, say for R&D? Tough. (Section 9009 (b)).
See? The cost of producing drugs and medical devices will rise in order to pay these taxes, but the hospitals won't be able to expand their size to help cushion and cover the cost increases. So, smaller hospitals with proportionately higher drug and medical device cost per patient will be forced out of business.

And, according to the law, no one will be able to replace those missing hospital beds. It will be illegal to replace those hospital beds. They're gone.

So, not only will the relative number of hospital beds not increase, the absolute number of hospital beds will decrease.

Precisely as the population in an area ages out, the facilities to care for them will disappear.

Islam stops Christian conversion in part by forbidding the construction of new churches or the maintenance of existing churches.

Barack Hussein Obama has taken a page from sharia law and applied it to the Baby Boomers. Wherever they live in large (and growing) numbers, the availability of hospital beds to care for them will shrink.

As the American population ages out, hospitals will become proportionally too small to care for the available hospital-needy population. This will hit small states, like Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, etc., the hardest, since their states are so small that geographic variations between county and state are very unlikely to have any cushioning effect.

Butcher Barack knows his business. You have to admit, his solution is possibly the neatest solution to killing old people that could have been developed.

And now it's the law.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Why Nuns Support ObamaCare

59,000 nuns support ObamaCare, in the calm, cool ignorance that they will be the first ones up against the wall when the revolution comes.

Why would 59,000 nuns support ObamaCare in defiance of the USCCB?
The answer is simple really.

Most of the liberal orders of nuns are dying.

Nobody in these orders is under 60 years of age.
None of these orders have paid into Social Security, unemployment or Medicare/Medicaid.

They are due absolutely no government benefits.
In most cases, the dioceses aren't going to help them much, if at all.
Apart from those nuns who managed to earn a diocesan retirement because they worked in a diocese for awhile, no diocese has any financial obligation towards a member of a religious order.
Religious orders are supposed to take care of their own.

Now, in the past this worked out because the fresh blood coming in at the bottom would find employment somewhere in the Church and provide the necessary funds to keep open the religious orders' retirement homes. This cycle works great when you have a steady stream of young postulants, novices, etc.

Unfortunately, there aren't any new vocations in the liberal orders. Their old revenue stream is now as dry as the wombs of most of the post-menopausal Wicca worshippers; it's as out-of-date as the 1970's pantsuits that are their new traditional habit.

The truly sad thing is, some of the nuns trapped in these orders are still faithful to the Church - their order has just been destroyed by the Powers That Be(tm) who run their lives.

The rain fails to fall on both the just and the unjust.

In any case, every nun in every one of these dying orders is VERY worried about her retirement.

After a year of staring at the ticking clock on the wall, the same wall that Barack, Nancy and Harry have been running their heads into for the last year, the nuns are scared to death.

What if ObamaCare doesn't pass?

It's a positive nightmare.

From their point of view, government-run health care is their only ticket to a trouble-free old age. If they don't throw their weight aboard now, the train might never leave the station. So, they've climbed out and have begun to push.

They don't really give a damn about the women who will be injured by abortion or the children who will die as a result. Those young girls - both the girls in the womb and the women carrying them - were never going to join their Magic Circle novitiate anyhow. To hell with them.

What these Kumbaya creatures don't realize - or don't want to know - is that ObamaCare intends on solving the Medicare gap by euthanizing old people. Sister Sillypants had her fingers in her ears when Obama talked about euthanizing his own grandmother.

Obama is her only hope, and she has to count on likely dying before he gets the euthanasia panels fully operating. Or at least she can look forward to three hots and a cot while she waits for the pillow over her face.

So that's the great irony of the thing.

These nuns REALLY WILL be the first ones up against the wall.
And, deep in their hearts, they know it.
But now that they've given up on Christ, Obama is the only source of hope they have.
If they abandon him, to whom will they go?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Still Crazy, After All These Years



At one time, he must have been sane.

It's hard to imagine it, but the man was the editor in chief for the Catechism of the Catholic Church. You remember that little book! Green cover, lots of numbered paragraphs, kind of harsh on that whole "let's act out homosexually" idea.

How quickly we forget!
Cardinal Schonborn, may God bless him, seems to have forgotten everything he's ever read. He now says celibacy may be the problem behind the media firestorm over pedophilia in the Catholic Church of Germany and Austria.

Oh, if only priests could marry! (sob! sniffle! snort!)
It's a crying shame that they can't!

Now, lest we fall down same memory-hole, we should recall the Vatican's own verdict on this: the pedophilia scandals have been caused by sodomites.

For those keeping score of such things, that's what the John Jay report originally said, too, before the USCCB got a hold of it and "revised" the findings a few years after it came out. And, of course, the US Government's own study of public schools demonstrated that public school employees offend at a rate about 20x higher than priests. As far as we recall, public school teachers are not prohibited from marrying.

So, how many people out there think that a sodomite can be cured of his predilections simply by having him marry a really hot woman?

Anyone?
Anyone?
Bueller?
Anyone?

Apparently, Cardinal Schonborn is of that opinion, because he seems to think that if sodomite priests could just get married, all of these pedophilia scandals would scatter like the storm clouds before a strong wind.

Either that, or the man is quietly recommending that sodomites be allowed to attempt to sacramentally marry each other in the Church.

But certainly even a prince of the Church isn't that stupid.

Right?
Right?
Bueller?....

Where has that boy gone?