Saturday, August 22, 2009

Resistance is Not Futile

If the following words do not make inimitable common sense to you, more's the pity. From Dale Ahlquist's enormously important G. K. Chesterton: The Apostle of Common Sense:

Big government and big business have used machinery to push us toward consolidation and a rather flat world of standardization. The problem is that big government and big business are both soulless. They are in revolt against the normal and the ordinary. "They are in revolt against the Citizen." They do not want the common man to have power.

They are willing to give him a vote, because they have long discovered that it need not give him any power. They are not willing to give him a house, or a wife, or a child, or a dog, or a cow, or a piece of land, because these things really do give him power. (Outline of Sanity, 208f)

To combat all this, says Chesterton, we need a moral movement. We have to be able to criticize ourselves. We have to be able to resist the tendencies toward consolidation. We have to resist monopolies. We have to resist endless and invasive bureaucracies. We have to resist the mentality that does not trust the common man to be able to take care of himself and his family.
Let that last sentence of Chesterton's sink in: They are not willing to give him a house, or a wife, or a child, or a dog, or a cow, or a piece of land, because these things really do give him power. Since when has popular culture - so largely a product of Madison Avenue and slick advertising - employed by big business and (now) big government - said such things are "hip", "cool", or will lead to human happiness?

Neither socialism nor big business proclaim the moral imperative of the gospel. Pope Leo XIII did that and inspired Hilaire Belloc, Chesterton, Father Vincent McNabb, E. F. Schumacher and a host of others to resist both as wrong-headed and wrong-spirited.

Do not sell Distributism - Subsidiarity - short. It is a call to sanity, human happiness, and ... much more. It is the Church's social teaching, it is definitive, and it is a path to human happiness in this world.

Hey, I can dream, can't I

I'm favoring a nation-wide lottery to determine who will become the next President of the United States. And to be confirmed and sworn-in, the person must absolutely, positively NOT want to be the President. With prayer and a bit luck, this would happen.

I'm tired of witnessing character disorder, Adlerian, and hubris case studies in office...

Immaculate Heart of Mary

Friday, August 21, 2009

Who You Gonna Trust?

Yes, it is a a moral issue; it certainly is, assuredly so. It is remarkable for an Administration to believe that normal Americans do not care enough to keep track of facts. Is it "land shark" strategy, or just cynism? A bit of both, I'm afraid, albeit "sincere" (and remember how far sincerity got such Enlightenment projects during the old, sad 20th century).

Regardless, until you realize and stop forgetting the importance, truth, and urgency of Archbishop Chaput's injunction, you are grasping only a portion of the matter:
In our day, sanctity-of-life issues are foundational - not because of anyone's "religious" views about abortion, although these are important; but because the act of dehumanizing and killing the unborn child attacks human dignity in a uniquely grave way. Deliberately killing the innocent is always, inexcusably wrong. It sets a pattern of contempt for every other aspect of human dignity. In redefining when human life begins and what is and isn't a human person, the logic behind permissive abortion makes all human rights politically contingent.
- Render Unto Caesar [207]

I say again, true transcendence does not reside at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in the District of Columbia. And the Last Self-Help Administration does not speak for God. The Magisterium of the Catholic Church does.

And one last word: always - always! - follow the money ...

Alleged Quote of the Day

"There is no humor in Islam. There is no fun in Islam. There can be no fun and joy in whatever is serious."
- Ayatollah Khomeini

Why? because the Scimitar does not contain the theological virtues of faith, hope, and charity, the Prophet's tomb is not empty, and it does not have G. K. Chesterton.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Paganism of the West

Lest we forget the downward spiral of neo-pagan at its ugliest in the gospel-rejecting West, witness Black Metal. And as a refresher course, make sure to read Paganism I, II, and III.

Decline - Chesterton

Ahlquist on Chesterton's Everlasting Man:
If we study any civilization, we see that after progress comes decay. Chesterton says men do not grow tired of evil but of good. they become weary of joy. They stop worshiping God and start worshiping idols, their own bad imitations of God, and they become as wooden as the thing they worship. They start worshiping nature and become unnatural. They start worshiping sex and become perverted. Men start lusting after men and become unmanly.
The most ignorant of humanity know by the very look of earth that they have forgotten heaven.

Ad orientem

It was not a reason for my conversion to Mother Church, and I know it can be a point on which both sides of the debate become unhinge-able (if not positively acting like each has a corn-cob somewhere unmentionable), but for the record: When we study the most ancient liturgical practices of the Church...

'Ludicrous Language Games'

From Letter of a Modern Female Professional @ The Catholic Thing:

In C.S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters, the Devil says that he uses jargon to replace God’s truth to confuse and corrupt people. Lewis was right on the money with modern society.

The ludicrous language games present a thin mask of the reality of the situation. Courts and politicians say abortion is the termination of a fetus or embryo, not the death of a child. But when a couple that wants a child becomes pregnant there is much celebration of modern medicine and happiness in anticipation. No one calls it an embryo or a fetus; immediately it is the much longed-for child. It is absurd to think that these two contradicting ideas exist in our society ... More>>

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Hubble - 13 Billion Year Old Light

Hentoff - 2 / I Won - 0

For the record: Nat Hentoff is afraid of this Administration.

And why are common men and women up in arms about the health care reform being hawked by the Last Self-Help Administration? Let me borrow from Dale Ahlquist's book on G. K. Chesterton:
Chesterton says that since the 16th century, nobody's system of philosophy has really corresponded to everybody's sense of reality. Each of them asks us to believe something that no normal man would believe: "that law is above right, or right is outside reason, or things are only as we think them, or everything is relative to a reality that is not there." The modern philsopher claims, "like a sort of con(fidence) man," that if once we will grant him this, the rest will be easy, that if at one point we just sacrifice our sanity, everything else will make sense.
The Administration is built upon modernist and pragmatist philosophies that the common man rejects. Its reasoning says things like, "We have to spend lots and lots of money in order to bring down the deficit" using the wisest of modern economic philosophy. Or that a vast, bureaucratic network of government workers will insure the best health care for the people in optimal age ranges (15-40).

I would say that Nat Hentoff has good reasons for his high anxiety.

Crisis of Distinctions - The Unraveling

James V. Schall, S.J. writes,

Reflecting in First Things on the death of Father Richard Neuhaus, R. R. Reno recalled a pithy Neuhaus sentence: “Where orthodoxy is optional; orthodoxy will sooner or later be proscribed.” Neuhaus did not imply that, if orthodoxy is not optional, it will flourish. Still, in this land, we must be approaching the proscription of orthodoxy – hate-speech legislation, coercion of medical practitioners, tolerance of almost everything but orthodoxy.

During the 2006 congressional elections, Reno worried that the Republicans might lose seats thereby jeopardizing the pro-life movement. Neuhaus acknowledged that Reno had a legitimate concern. Still Neuhaus remained optimistic. He told Reno: “Relax, Rusty, the Republicans will eventually betray us anyhow.” This is prophetic. We can only relax in orthodoxy. Chesterton would be pleased.

Read all …

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

MD Speaks Up

For the record: an MD responds to the president's NYT Sunday op/ed:
G. Wesley Clark, MD

Mr. President, I just read your op-ed in the New York Times. You must either be incredibly ignorant (e.g., pediatricians performing tonsillectomies, surgeons being paid $50,000 for an amputation), or else you believe that Americans are incredibly stupid.

You justify a hasty and massive healthcare "reform" to save money, by spending an additional trillion dollars. You would fix a "broken" and broke Medicare system by adding another 47 million beneficiaries to government programs while arguing this will reduce overall costs.

I've itemized your inaccurate claims, with my comments in italics... More>>

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Common Sense and Being Heard

I think what felt like a total denial of American common sense in the pig in a poke November election now seems somewhat assuaged by the response, reaction, what have you, to the health care rush of the Last Self-Help Administration.

What G. K. Chesterton called "common sense" belongs to the common man; neither Hodge nor Godge, neither "energetic progressive" / socialist nor "obstinate conservative" / industrialist-capitalist. At heart the American heart and mind is Distributist unless led under the folly of either of these Scilla or Caribdis economical monstrosities.

And why is that? Because the common man in the West of Chesterton is cut from the fabric of Christendom. And no cynical executive branch of American governance is going to foist shoddy thinking of euphemisms and "just trust me" folly upon Americans. (The same package can and probably will be foisted on us with more smoke and mirrors, however. Count on it.)

The "Town Hall" disruptions are not conspiracies. They are the common man saying if you don't listen to me, I will raise my voice until I get heard, loud and clear. PARTICULARLY, if you are trying to shove something suspiciously like totalitarianism down our throats. Oligarchical ninnies shouldn't get their shorts in a bunch. After all, we are Americans; remember our beginnings. The template is still there.

And one last thing: the greatest folly of all is trying to pretend that Americans believe that government is a legitimate voice of true transcendence. As if. Ultimately, all of us must aim past these four score and ten, past good times and bad, past "health care," and Americans still remember this.

Ultimately, we must come face to face with the same Creator Who came among us, full of grace and truth, our Judge and our Hope. And THAT is the greatest common sense of all.

DSM Follies

For the record: defensiveness at The Chartreuse Moose.

Corpus Christianum - Chivalry for all ages

Chivalry, meaning the whole company of knights (from chevalier, French for a mounted knight), later came to mean the knightly Code of Honour. "Chivalry is only a name for that general spirit or state of mind which disposes men to heroic actions, and keeps them conversant with all that is beautiful and sublime in the intellectual and moral world" (The Broadstone of Honour, Kenelm Digby). "And there by ordnance of the Queen it was judged upon Sir Gawaine for ever after he should be with all ladies, and fight their quarrels, and that he should never refuse mercy to him that asketh mercy. Thus was Gawaine sworn upon the four Evangelists" (Morte d'Arthur, Sir Thomas Malory). The chief virtues of Chivalry are Courtesy, Mercy, Religion, Generosity, Hospitality, Courage and Defence of the weak and helpless. [ht: Roman Christendom]

Corpus Christianum is
an international Private Association of the Faithful, open both to men and women, dedicated to praying for a renewal of Christendom.

Marian in character and guided by a Catholic chivalrous spirit, Corpus Christianum members pray daily for the following key points:

- The renewal, unity, and spread of Christendom
- The Supreme Pontiff and all priests/religious
- The protection of Christians around the world
- The restoration of the family
- The conversion of sinners and the sanctification of all people

We are looking for courageous souls who are willing to take up the standard of Christ the King! We invite you to review the association's statutes for more information about the organization and its obligations.