Thursday, January 29, 2009

Primates Meeting Next Week Will Be Interesting

Next week, the Primates of the Anglican Communion will meet. And however much the Archbishop of Canterbury tries to distract the meeting with briefings and papers and such, the elephant in the room will be the question of whether and when to recognize the Anglican Church in North America as a new province.

It is interesting that the Welsh primate, Barry Morgan, who adamantly opposes a new province as “nonsense,” also says his view is in the minority among the primates. Whether he meant his hard line view is in the minority or simple opposition to a new province is in the minority, we don’t know.

Christopher Johnson has some ideas of what might transpire at the Primates Meeting. As for me, I think it unlikely the new province will be recognized at the meeting. Should ++Rowan think he doesn’t have the votes to stop it (Yes, I do think Dr. Williams sides with The Episcopal Church when push comes to shove.), I think he will use all means possible to prevent a vote.

The question then is to what extent will the other primates let him get away with that. I think he get away with it for a time. Either that, or he will have enough votes at this meeting at least. For one thing, the Anglican Church in North America hasn’t yet approved a constitution yet. (The current constitution is provisional only.) So a reasonable case can be made for waiting even to those well disposed toward a new province.

And you know how much ++Rowan likes to wait and delay. He’ll succeed in doing so without too much additional upset at this meeting at least.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

BBC Bias

In noting BBC’s bias, Damian Thompson reveals a tidbit I find very interesting:

George W Bush kept the BBC at arm's length because, even before he took office, he had learned that its hacks hated him and there was nothing he could do about it. I can vouch for this: I remember walking through the BBC newsroom and seeing a huge grotesque cartoon of W staring out at the journalists as they typed their self-righteous dispatches into their computers.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Zen Buddhist Expected to be Elected TEC Bishop

No. This is not a joke.

But this is beyond satire. What is an Anglican blogger to do? How do you send up The Episcopal Church when it is already so absurd?

I give up.

Obama Updates

I’m a bit under the weather, but I want briefly to update on two recent posts.

I assailed President Obama on his vow to close Guantanamo Bay and on his halting of terror trials.

He’s now finding out the hard way that things aren’t so simple. For one thing, some former G Bay detainees have gone back to terror. For another – surprise, surprise – most don’t want terrorists next door.

On the stimulus package, I noted that Obama has the political capital to stop its transformation into a lurid liberal fantasy.

Well, it appears he is using that capital to remove one offending provision, contraceptive funding.

Much, much more needs to be done before we have a reasonable, responsible, effective stimulus package. But this is a start. And I have no problem giving credit to Obama when credit is due.

Monday, January 26, 2009

No Safe Zones: The Politicization of . . . Everything

In this Glorious New Beginning of the Age of Obama, it is getting harder and harder to escape partisan politics, especially of the Lefty variety.

I can be a bit political. (Here, all my readers say, “Nooooo!”) But there are actually times when I don’t want to deal with politics and don’t appreciate being bombarded with such.

One such time was on the evening of The Glorious First Day (more commonly known as January 20th). I had watched, calmly for the most part I will have you know, the Inauguration and the events following. But now I wanted to relax and watch some college basketball on ESPN HD (which can be really glorious).

But the announcers just had to note Obama’s Glorious New Beginning. . . . And they kept talking about it, very favorably, of course. And they kept talking about Obama, and they kept talking about Obama and . . . I turned off the T. V.

Hey, ESPN, if I turn to you, I do so to watch sports.

Well, I’m not the only one who has noticed that “safe zones” from partisan politics are getting fewer and fewer. Many, particularly of the lefty persuasion, just don’t get that some settings are just not appropriate for injecting their political views.

And that includes religious political lefties. I remember Tony Compolo ranting about Iraq in an address to a youth workers convention I attended.

I walked out.

Much more here.

Not more safe zones though, I’m afraid.

By the way, not to be paranoid, but that’s one symptom of increasing authoritarianism/totalitarianism.

No Safe Place: Episcopal Diocese of Virginia Goes All In for Gay Agenda

I’m not going to rehash the events of this past weekend in Episcopal Diocese of Virginia. One can find the basics here with lots of comments. And Still On Patrol has some prescient comments.

I have said here for some time that The Episcopal Church is not a viable place for orthodox Christians. The events in Virginia confirm that. As I’ve also said, I respect those orthodox who out of conviction stay (as long as they don’t undercut the efforts of those who leave). But I think they are mistaken.

Virginia is a relatively moderate TEC diocese. If they are going all in for the gay agenda opposed to the authority of Scripture – and they are – what does that say about The Episcopal Church as a whole? It confirms that it is an apostate denomination diving further into apostasy. The Episcopal Church is past hope. God gives such over to a depraved mind. And the Episcopal Church is showing more and more symptoms of such every day.

There is now a real orthodox Anglican Church in North America tied to orthodox Anglicans worldwide. What reason is there to stay in the rotten and rotting Episcopal Church?


Friday, January 23, 2009

Just Exactly What Will the Stimulus Package Stimulate?

When the idea of an Obama economic stimulus package was first being floated, I actually thought it a good idea. Word was there would be a lot of infrastructure spending, and I especially liked that. Our nation’s infrastructure could use some shoring up, and accelerating that in order to help the economy kills two birds with one stone. That would be both smart policy and smart politics.

But now it appears only a relatively small slice of the package will go to infrastructure. Instead hundreds of billions will go to liberal wishlists that have darn little to do with the economy.

I love how House Republican Leader John Boehner summed it up this morning:

How do you spend hundreds of millions of dollars on contraceptives, how does that stimulate the economy?

And the same could be said, in less colorful language, about increased funding for the arts, for public television, for various welfare programs, for “health”, for “education” (as if the huge increase in federal spending for education in recent decades has done any good).

Others who once were well-disposed toward a stimulus package, such as David Brooks and some Democrats, also don’t like what is emerging.

Really, if one were cynical, one would think liberals are just using the economic crisis as a pretense to get a lot of money thrown at their favorite pet causes. . . .

Yes. I am cynical.

As for Obama, he has the political capital to put a stop to this and get an adult, responsible package passed. Let’s hope he will.

“Hope.” Yeah.

MORE: Remember all that talk from Obama about a “new politics” beyond partisanship, etc. etc.? It was just talk:

During a morning meeting with congressional leaders from both parties, President Obama acknowledged the philosophical differences between his stimulus package and the Republican plan – but, sources familiar with the conversation said, Obama then noted: “I won.”…

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Gulag EU: Dutch MP to be Prosecuted for Criticizing Islam

This development is but one more attack on free speech and one more step in the dhimmification of Europe.

And, of course, in Gulag EU and elsewhere, the ministrations of the speech police are slightly one-sided. Jihadi Muslims can spread their hate with little if any restraint. But point out that hate – one musn’t do that.

Neuhaus on the Politics of Abortion

On this 26th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, I commend to you this article by the late Richard John Neuhaus. It is among his last writings. The man was perceptive right to the end.


My prayers are with those gathered in Washington this morning for the March for Life. I participated in two or three of those myself in my college days, one just after the inauguration of Ronald Reagan.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Obama, Soft on Terrorism

Earlier this month, I asked if Obama was going soft on terrorism.

I’m not asking anymore.

To the cheers of the Left and those worldwide who don’t care about the protection of America, one of President Obama’s first acts is halting the trials of those held at Guantanamo Bay for 120 days.

And guess what that stay includes? “The trials of five alleged 9/11 plotters - including the self-proclaimed 'mastermind' behind America's worst terror attack . . . .”

Justice delayed is justice denied.

Grace and Gracelessness

It’s looks like we are getting Change already.

Even those who very much disagree with George W. Bush have noted the grace and class he has shown during the transition. The contrast with the sleazy manner in which Bill Clinton left office with presidential offices literally vandalized, for starters, could not have been greater.

Barack Obama? Inauguration Day wasn’t even over when the new White House website took gratuitous cheap shots at Bush over Hurricane Katrina.


Hat tip to Hot Air.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Midland Memories

Former President Bush flying home to Midland, Texas today brings back memories. I was born in Midland, Texas, and for most of my life, most of my family lived there. Mama and all my grandparents are buried in Midland. And if I were to die today, I would be buried there next to Mama.

After my Grandma on my mom’s side died in 1982, my Uncle T. J. (also now buried in Midland) put her house on the market. Guess who was among those who expressed interest?

George W. Bush the younger.

Brownshirts, Anyone?

I’m sorry. I really hate to be a downer on the day of The Ascension of the Chosen One. I really do.

But this creeps me out.

A volunteer army under the direct control of The Great Leader. . . . Sorry, I know my history well enough to be nervous about such things.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Minnesota Frankenfraud Recount Unconstitutional?

This legal argument is to the point – counting one county’s votes differently than another county’s (and thereby treating Franken votes with blatant favoritism) violates the Equal Protection Clause as upheld in Bush v. Gore (2000). Votes in statewide elections must be given equal weight across the state, not “value one person's vote over that of another.” And the Minnesota recount has certainly not met that standard.

I fail to see how any reasonable person can argue with that. Whether such legal common sense and democratic fair play prevails is another question.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Gene Robinson “Horrified” at Christian Inaugural Prayers

Sometimes they make Anglican blogging too easy . . . or too hard, depending on how you look at it.

From the New York Times:

Bishop Robinson said he had been reading inaugural prayers through history and was “horrified” at how “specifically and aggressively Christian they were.”

“I am very clear,” he said, “that this will not be a Christian prayer, and I won’t be quoting Scripture or anything like that. The texts that I hold as sacred are not sacred texts for all Americans, and I want all people to feel that this is their prayer.”

Now how the hell am I supposed to satirize or comment on that?

I guess I could suggest that the VGR would be “horrified” if he learned some history and realized we used to be a Christian nation. Or I could ask if the Church of Satan will “feel that this is their prayer.” I could even change the name of this blog to “Specifically and Aggressively Anglican.”

But when the heretics get this over the top, how am I supposed to top them?

I give up.

What’s amazing is they might actually not realize how silly they look.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Anti-Semitism on the Rise

Anti-Semitism is becoming more unmasked and violent in the West. Israel defending itself against Hamas attacks from Gaza is really bringing out crowds of Jew-hating scum, some even chanting “Jews to the gas.”

It’s disturbing, and it’s getting past the point where Jews are getting fearful again, even in the U. K.

And guess what is contributing to this wave of anti-Semitism? Yep, peaceful Islam.

Much more here and here.

MORE: Christopher Johnson reflects my opinions about Gaza just about exactly.

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Late Heath Ledger Wins Golden Globe

I am very glad to see this.

It may surprise my readers as I’m not one to give much weight to pop culture, but I was very impressed by Mr. Ledger’s performance as The Joker in The Dark Knight. I’m glad to see this award and hope it is followed up by an Oscar.

Obama Picks Gene Robinson to Kick Off Inaugural Weekend

Wonderful. Gene Robinson will give the invocation at the first inaugural event at the Lincoln Memorial.

I find this inappropriate not because of Robinson’s theological and political positions, but because he is such a self-promoting lightweight. He doesn’t have the substance to merit such an honor and position.

But then the same could be said about the incoming president. So maybe it’s not so inappropriate.

Hattip to BabyBlue.

MORE: A quote from Robinson: “"I will be careful not to be especially Christian in my prayer."

This is getting more appropriate by the hour.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Obama Going Soft on Terrorism?

This report from the Guardian is not a good sign. It appears Obama intends to open up links, however quiet, to Hamas.

I completely fail to see why Hamas merits this. They have made no moves toward renouncing terrorism and or toward recognizing Israel’s right to exist. Until they do, I much prefer this method of dealing with Hamas.

Hot Air has more on this, including a reminder of this Obama campaign promise:

“We must not negotiate with a terrorist group intent on Israel’s destruction. We should only sit down with Hamas if they renounce terrorism, recognize Israel’s right to exist and abide by past agreements.”
“Hamas is not a state. Hamas is a terrorist organization.”

Well, he got that right on the campaign trail at least. But he apparently intends to treat Hamas as legitimate anyway. If so, look for additional weakness and softness on terrorism elsewhere with dire consequences. Such misjudgement will not be confined to Hamas. Carterite and Clintonite policies on (not) dealing with terrorism were utter failures. I don’t expect any revival of said policies to have a different result.

Hate Bush all you like, but give him credit in one area. He knows how to deal with terrorists.

Obama apparently does not.

MORE: James Robbins makes a very prescient point:

Whether one agrees with the notion of the U.S. opening a direct diplomatic channel to Hamas or not, talking about it right now is very poor timing. If nothing else it makes it appear that Hamas is being rewarded for its behavior in the past month. As well, discussing recognizing Hamas this way could have a negative effect on the ongoing negotiations over the fighting in Gaza. The Israelis have every right to be annoyed, or worse. What are these Obama leakers thinking? Amateur hour continues, as John Roche used to say.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Richard John Neuhaus, R.I.P.

First Things just posted the following:

Fr. Richard John Neuhaus slipped away today, January 8, shortly before 10 o’clock, at the age of seventy-two. He never recovered from the weakness that sent him to the hospital the day after Christmas, caused by a series of side effects from the cancer he was suffering. He lost consciousness Tuesday evening after a collapse in his heart rate, and the next day, in the company of friends, he died.

My tears are not for him—for he knew, all his life, that his Redeemer lives, and he has now been gathered by the Lord in whom he trusted.

I weep, rather for all the rest of us. As a priest, as a writer, as a public leader in so many struggles, and as a friend, no one can take his place. The fabric of life has been torn by his death, and it will not be repaired, for those of us who knew him, until that time when everything is mended and all our tears are wiped away.

Funeral arrangements are still being planned; more information about the funeral will be made public shortly. Please accept our thanks for all your prayers and good wishes.

In Deepest Sorrow,
Joseph Bottum


First Things


Such weeping indeed is in order. He will be greatly missed.

Rest in peace, Fr. Neuhaus.

Pray For Fr. Neuhaus

I am grieved to pass on a report that Fr. Richard John Neuhaus, editor of First Things, may not be long with us. He has been administered last rites by Fr. George Rutler. Fr. Rutler said, “It is appropriate that prayers be offered for a holy death.”

As an avid and appreciative reader of First Things, this news has really hit me this morning. Please pray for Fr. Neuhaus.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

UK Suffering From Global Warming

Actually the UK is suffering from an incredibly bitter winter. Even the sea is freezing in places. More here with some amazing photos.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Presiding Priestess Prattles About Gaza

The Episcopal Church’s Presiding Priestess Katharine Schori has issued the usual prattle about Gaza.

But, funny, she can’t seem to bring herself to mention by name the truly guilty party in this conflict. As pointed out by Stand Firm and Christopher Johnson, she dare not say the H-word for some reason.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Gay-Friendly Church Vandalized . . . by Gays?

It appears a few gays are not only intolerant vandals, they are stupid:

The anti-Prop. 8 mob opened up their new year by spray-painting a Catholic church in San Francisco’s Castro district to protest support for traditional marriage. Only one small oversight: The church they targeted is actually “gay-friendly” and opposed the ballot measure, too. D’oh.

Attack even your allies in the name of “tolerance” – brilliant!

At least now that parish is getting a taste of the sort of insanity they are supporting.

Democrats Steal Another Senate Seat UPDATED

I’m really getting sick of this. And perhaps some of you are getting sick of me ranting about it. But election fraud greatly harms a democracy, so I will continue to shine the light on it.

I haven’t been personally counting the ballots, but it appears Democrats have stolen another big election through creative vote counting. It’s likely Al Franken will be awarded a U. S. Senate seat from Minnesota.

If you need to go vomit now, that’s o. k. I’ll still be here when you get back.

The first count had Senator Coleman ahead by several hundred votes. But, ah, then the Democrat Minnesota political machinery got to work as well documented over at Minnesota Democrats Exposed. They counted and recounted and miscounted, including “discovering” “missing ballots”, of course, until they got the correct results, helped by a state supreme court ruling that allowed the count to be finalized without the issue of double-counted ballots being settled. This ruling greatly aided Franken. This comment is revealing: “My sister was part of the recount team (I promised her I wouldn’t say which one) and she tells me Coleman will win if they throw the double counts out.”

Let’s see – a Democrat political machine counts and recounts and miscounts until it gets the desired result aided by a fishy state supreme court ruling . . . . Sound familiar? That’s exactly what the Democrats were trying to pull in the 2000 Presidential Election in Florida until the U. S. Supreme Court put a stop to it.

My disgust is mitigated by the thought that six years of Senator Al Franken will give people that much more good reason to vote Democrats out. But it’s darn hard to vote them out when their electioneering games nullify legitimate votes again and again and again.

The Minnesota Supreme Court issues another fishy ruling. Let’s see – double counting votes from Democrat precincts is o. k., but counting absentee ballots from Republican precincts isn’t. Hmmmm.

Led by Sen. John Cornyn, whom I’m darn glad is my Senator, Republicans vow to block any premature seating of Franken.

Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal also thinks the Minnesota recount smells, goes into some detail explaining why, then concludes:

Minnesotans like to think that their state isn't like New Jersey or Louisiana, and typically it isn't. But we can't recall a similar recount involving optical scanning machines that has changed so many votes, and in which nearly every crucial decision worked to the advantage of the same candidate. The Coleman campaign clearly misjudged the politics here, and the apparent willingness of a partisan like [Secretary of State] Ritchie to help his preferred candidate, Mr. Franken. If the Canvassing Board certifies Mr. Franken as the winner based on the current count, it will be anointing a tainted and undeserving Senator.

Please read the whole article. It’s an excellent summary of the creative recount.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Church of England Investing With Al Gore

I’m not sure what to make of this. But the Church of England is investing in Al Gore’s oh-so-green investment firm. And that’s green as in “socially responsible,” not necessarily as in actually making money.

In fact, Al Gore’s comments sound suspiciously like excuses to lose money.

Institutional investors in his fund are “more attracted to the strategy we follow are managing long-term assets toward long-term goals.”

"Those looking for a quick hit in the market place, to skim the cream and go somewhere else, those are not the investors attracted to this strategy,” Mr Gore said, according to wire service reports.

Well, personally, I like to make money long and short term, and I’m not attracted at all, thank you.

Without getting into a discourse on socially responsible investing, I think wise donations of one’s obscene profits are a more effective way to change the world, certainly more effective than investing with Al Gore.