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Friday, August 29, 2008

Great Move

It appears John McCain has picked Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to be his vice president. The Democrats and sympathetic pundits will use her age, 44, she's even younger than Barack, as an opportunity to throw back at the McCain campaign the experience issue. It won't stick. Most Americans will accept if the presidential candidate is qualified, the veep, so long as he or she is capable (which Palin is), need not have as lengthy a résumé as the president.

Her being a woman is a big asset. As a Republican conservative, the feminists, using a variant of the charge lobbed at black conservatives, will shriek she is not "woman" enough, or some such, but again, it will not stick. The Democrats and the media are simply clueless how little most Americans care about and for feminism. Those who examine feminist complaints about Palin will quickly divine the hypocrisy behind them.

Romney, the favorite, would have been a dud. Picking Palin was a smart move by McCain and let's face it, it also doesn't hurt she's a babe.

UPDATE: Affirmation Palin is a home run for McCain is this gracious response from the Obama campaign: “Today, John McCain put the former mayor of a town of 9,000 with zero foreign policy experience a heartbeat away from the presidency.” Nice work, guys: in one sentence you belittle small towns, bring up the age issue and remind voters once again the inexperience of Barack Obama, the one who wants to be president.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Some Sound Advice...

That will not be followed. From Alan Jacobs, proprietor of more than 95 theses:
So my advice to all the mainline churches that see achievement of the MDGs as the core of their mission: sell all you have and give it to the poor. Your many possessions do absolutely nothing for the MDGs: sell them. Sell the chalices. Sell the copes, surplices, and cassocks. Sell the plate. Sell the prayer books, hymnals, and (if you have any) Bibles. Sell the pews. Sell the stained glass. Sell the buildings and the land to those who actually need them. Sell it all and give the proceeds to organizations who can actually do something to achieve the Goals that you say are at the very heart of your mission. Put your money where your mouth is. Or else shut up.
(Thanks to the MCJ)

From Those Wacky, Fun Lovin,' Krazy Kidz at NARAL

What do you suppose is inside, Gummi Bears?


I've been a fan of PJ O'Rourke for many years, going back to his National Lampoon days, of course, and especially, his tenure at Car & Driver Magazine, where he crafted astonishingly rude but funny pieces and caused his editors to refer to him nervously as "PJ (we're gonna get letters) O'Rourke." One of O'Rourke's great charms is his willingness to take on any issue, no matter how complex, and with rapier wit and gimlet eye, break it down into tiny, delectable pieces; his explanation of the S & L crisis of 'eighties in Rolling Stone is a modern classic.

One subject, however, that O'Rourke has eschewed (to the best of my knowledge) is God. O'Rourke's political and economic outlook is generally libertarian and I have always assumed he was an atheist or, at best, a deist. Not the case: in Search Magazine, O'Rourke takes on the deity and I am please to learn he does believes in Him, revealing it in a piece called, simply enough, On God that is (thank God!) rich in "O'Rourkeness."

“But science can be proved,” a scientist would say. “The whole point of science is experimental proof.” Yet we non-scientists have to take that experimental proof on faith because we don’t know what the scientists are talking about. This makes science a matter of faith in men while religion, of course, is a matter of faith in God, and if you’ve got to choose …

Personally, I don’t think you do. Science and religion both assert the same thing: that the universe operates according to rules and that those rules can be discerned. Albeit this does make it easier to believe in God than, for instance, organic chemistry. Just the fact of rules implies a rule maker while just the fact of mixing nitro with glycerin and causing an explosion does not imply a Ph.D.


In one way, however, faith in science does come easier than faith in God—if fear is any gauge of how real we believe a thing is. To judge by human behavior, people are not trembling before the Almighty much. But many of those same people are scared silly by science. They are frightened by a climate stuck in the microwave of technological advances, frightened by genetic modifications that may—who knows?—cross cabbages with kings and produce a Prince Charles, and naturally they are frightened by the clouds of mushrooms being grown in the science cellars of Iran and North Korea.
Read it all. With a name like O'Rourke is it possible PJ is a lapsed Catholic? We can always hope, and if so, also hope he will come back into the fold: the world will be a better place when O'Rourke tackles liturgical dancing and contemporary Catholic service music.

(Thanks to Banished Child of Eve.)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Delicious Break from Potatoes

His songs are transcendently vulgar but Kid Rock's views on celebrity are a refreshing change from most of those in the entertainment biz:
"I truly believe that people like myself, who are in a position of entertainers in the limelight, should keep their mouth shut on politics," he noted. "Because at the end of the day, let me tell you what I 'm good at: I'm good at writing songs and singing. What I'm not educated in is the field of political science..."

He further suggests that political candidates might be better off to avoid close connections to those in the entertainment business.

"I think celebrity endorsements hurt politicians," he said.

(From CMT.)

Don't Penn Me In

Kathryn Jean Lopez at the Corner, in Denver for the convention, this morning witnessed with approval the actor Sean Penn semi-politely declining a fan's request for a snapshot instead clocking the poor fellow over the head. Lopez presents that as evidence Penn has finally grown up some.

Perhaps so, but he could do better. Since Penn, like most of his peers, devoted every ounce of his being during his formative years to attaining the fame he now enjoys, a true sign of maturity would be his willingness to share a small fraction of it with the fans who gave it to him.

No One Knows Who They Were or What They were Doing

Take a close look at the image above and note the stately Greek temple in the center. That is whence Thursday night The One, "with a scented sponge ‘neath his nose, lest the breath of the vulgar herd should contaminate his sacred person," will deign to accept the cries of the unwashed for deliverance.

It's nice but I had in mind as more appropriate a celebrated interpretation of Stonehenge.

Publish Post

Putting on Ayres

The Obama campaign is going after TV stations running an ad depicting him as far chummier than he has so far let on with unrepentant former terrorist, Pentagon bomber William Ayres. While no one should cavil with the campaign's call for supporters to inundate stations with complaints, the campaign is also demanding the Justice Department to step in, removing any doubts of the ad's veracity for your Bloviator.

(Thanks to the Instapundit)

(Fun fact: the organization Ayres belonged to, the "Weather Underground," was first known as the "Weathermen" but changed its name in a nod to the nascent feminist sensibilities of the time. Wasn't that sweet of them?)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Cardinal Egan Steps up to the Plate

...and knocks it out of the park.


Like many other citizens of this nation, I was shocked to learn that the Speaker of the House of Representatives of the United States of America would make the kind of statements that were made to Mr. Tom Brokaw of NBC-TV on Sunday, August 24, 2008. What the Speaker had to say about theologians and their positions regarding abortion was not only misinformed; it was also, and especially, utterly incredible in this day and age.

We are blessed in the 21st century with crystal-clear photographs and action films of the living realities within their pregnant mothers. No one with the slightest measure of integrity or honor could fail to know what these marvelous beings manifestly, clearly, and obviously are, as they smile and wave into the world outside the womb. In simplest terms, they are human beings with an inalienable right to live, a right that the Speaker of the House of Representatives is bound to defend at all costs for the most basic of ethical reasons. They are not parts of their mothers, and what they are depends not at all upon the opinions of theologians of any faith. Anyone who dares to defend that they may be legitimately killed because another human being “chooses” to do so or for any other equally ridiculous reason should not be providing leadership in a civilized democracy worthy of the name.

Edward Cardinal Egan

Archbishop of New York

August 26, 2008

We need to see more of this and wonder of wonders, we are. Archbishop Chaput of Denver, just in time for the Democratic Convention, issued salvos not only at Speaker Pelosi but Senator Biden as well.
"Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is a gifted public servant of strong convictions and many professional skills. Regrettable, knowledge of Catholic history and teaching does not seem to be one of them," Chaput [said].


I certainly presume [Biden's] good will and integrity," said the archbishop, "and I presume that his integrity will lead him to refrain from presenting himself for Communion if he supports a false 'right' to abortion.
This is all to the good. Have we at last reached the turning point, where Catholic leadership in this country will no longer remain silent when putatively "devout" Catholic politicians stump for abortion?

(Thanks to Catholidoxy)

Smug Alert

If you can stand it (it's over five-and-half minutes long), check out this excruciating treacle-fest from the Democrats, a lugubrious paean to The One. Particularly noteworthy are the pious poses struck by b-list celebrities; who no doubt tried their darnedest to feign sincerity when commanded by the director to smile but appear more like Mr. Starker, the coffin salesman played by Liberace in the movie version of Waugh's The Loved One.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


When your Bloviator was but a mere calf and was put to bed for the night, he would listen to Jean Shepherd's nighttime radio program on WOR in New York. Shepherd once told a tale of working late-night at a TV station (in the early days of that medium) when he and an engineer, as an experiment, instead of running the usual "B" western, took a clip of cowboys riding around on their horses and made it into a loop. They broadcast the loop continuously for several hours to see what viewer reaction would be. Not a single call came in. The viewers either didn't notice or didn't care.

I was reminded of Shep's tale when I read today of a demonstration (500 strong!) by anti-war protesters in Denver on the eve of the Democratic convention. It, like just about every other anti-war demonstration of the past forty years, had all the components favored by the perpetrators of these things, including rhyming chants ("hey hey, ho ho" &tc), gigantic puppets and culmination with my favorite, the die-in. It got me to thinking, as an experiment, a TV news outfit, instead of running fresh footage of chanters, puppets and die-ins for each anti-war demonstration covered, might instead broadcast identical footage for every one of them, say for a month, to see what viewer reaction would be. My guess is the viewers either wouldn't notice or wouldn't care.

We're All Geezers Now

Joe Biden (b. 1942) being only six years younger than John McCain (b. 1936) effectively scotches the sub-campaign against McCain over his age. With both candidates sporting gray manes and Biden's face a tad wrinklier than McCain's, we may even be spared some of the unflattering photos of McCain our impartial media, up to now, has run with predictable coincidence.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Biden His Time

By the choice of Senator Joseph Biden to be his running mate, Barack Obama, in the space of a few short months, has accomplished a remarkable achievement: the lightening transformation from starry-eyed idealist into jaded political hack; this in spite of his young age, his scant, four-year Senate experience and his paper-thin resumé (most prospective hacks achieve hoary veneration by forcing the entire country to pay for numerous and unneeded bridges, highways and office buildings in their home states or districts).

It remains to be seen whether this abrupt change was a wise one for Senator Obama, whether the newly transformed Barack will still be the saviour to whom America beseeches. Should the senator have miscalculated, however, and go down to defeat this November, his timely and skillful metamorphosis into Washington warhorse should assure him a pleasant alternative: filling the opening created by the imminent retirement of Senator Kennedy. At only 47 Obama is broken in yet sufficiently hidebound to assume the mantle of that awesome Ciceronian of the Democratic left. Senator Biden will be furious.

Remembering General Motors

A long time ago in this country beautiful cars were made. The car companies encouraged their designers to let their imaginations run wild and they did. Sometimes the designers' fantasies found their way onto the production line, more often practicality dictated otherwise. The important thing, however, was the designers were encouraged to be daring, to show their stuff. The New York Times has assembled a portfolio of "dream cars" created back in the halcyon days of General Motors; it's simply stunning, go look.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Say Bye-Bye?

Pearls of wisdom from the Chosen One:

Obama, quoting Warren Buffet: "Just Tax the Heck Out of People"

"Obama Says US Is Just Like Russia In Invading Countries"

Gee, first he cites a man who will die richer than Croesus even if the top bracket is raised to a thousand percent and posits there is "some merit" to his idea; then he drags from the trash the tired old "moral equivalency" doctrine that even before the end of the cold war lost credibility with all but the most hardcore leftie loons.

Pundits were saying not long ago the election was Obama's to lose. They were obviously onto something.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Blessed are the Cheese Makers

The ever popular ECUSA bishop, the Rt. Rev'd Gene Robinson, recently made a rare and welcome visit to New Hampshire (his diocese) and was kind enough to share his thoughts with a local reporter on the recently concluded Lambeth Conference (to which he was not invited).
"I think it accomplished what it set out to do, which was to build relationships." he said, listening to such talks as the "Bishop of Havarti tell about what it is like in Zimbabwe. Just the chance to hear what that's like is just amazing."
(Thanks to Perfesser Johnson at the MCJ)


(From the Cincinnatti Courier-Journal)
4,100 miles for an arrest that just goes bust

Kentucky sheriff drives to California only to bring back the wrong man

By Andrew Wolfson

Two weeks ago, the Butler County, Ky., sheriff and a deputy hopped into their cruiser and drove to California and back -- more than 4,100 miles -- to bring a man to Kentucky for failing to appear in court on the minor felony charge of fleeing from police and drunken driving, a misdemeanor.

On the way there, they stopped to sightsee at country music star Buck Owens' Crystal Palace in Bakersfield, Calif. On the way back, they bought T-shirts at a souvenir shop.

Only when they got back to Western Kentucky and turned their prisoner over to the jail did anyone confirm through fingerprints and mug shots what their prisoner, 27-year-old Joe Oros III, had been saying all along:

They had the wrong man.

(Thanks to the Volokh Conspiracy)
At a later news conference, the sheriff proudly displayed one of the t-shirts he and his deputy had purchased at the souvenir shop.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Bring Them On

Vox populi

From Fox News:

Stars Get Ready for Democratic Convention

Monday, August 18, 2008

How many stars are going to Denver next week for the Democratic Convention? Let's put it this way: they're going to have major gridlock in the Mile High City thanks to limos everywhere. The pollution level should go way up from A-listers in their individual gas-guzzling block-long vehicles!


The Creative Coalition, a non-partisan group, is bringing a boatload of stars with them including Annette Bening (which could mean that hubby Warren Beatty is nearby), Matthew Modine, Kerry Washington, Joey Pantoliano, Susan Sarandon, Tony Goldwyn, new co-president Tim Daly, Quentin Tarantino and Lawrence O'Donnell. So many celebs are coming that I've heard Oscar-winning director Barry Levinson is considering making a documentary about the whole experience!
The brass of the Democratic Party are, astonishingly, of the mind the average voter will be influenced by the political leanings of celebrities like Warren Beatty or Susan Sarandon and, in a way, they are right. If the cavalcade of Hollywood royalty does descend upon Denver for the convention, TV and YouTube images of movie stars gliding from fabulous do to fabulous do (while anarchists, as they have promised, toss Molotov cocktails through Starbucks windows) will drive home nicely to the average Joe just how utterly out of touch the Democratic Party is; that it is the Democrats, not the Republicans, who are, however vulgar, the voice of the snotty elite.

So bring on those stars and let them loudly proclaim (before the cameras, if you please) the gospel of Obamessiah. The Republicans must be wringing their hands with glee at the prospect and likely have already shot a slew of TV spots for the fall campaign; the only job remaining for them the delightful task, at convention's end, of culling clips from the video treasure trove so generously provided by Hollywood and the Democrats, for insertion into those commercials.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Where I Been

The first pic was taken on the beach at the old family place in Maine; the second, from the deck of the house in Bovina. God is good.

While in Maine I attended my first Catholic mass in that state at a small church that was plain but attractive and, gratifyingly, packed with about 350 souls. I suppose it's a race to the bottom when it comes to bad Catholic liturgy and music but this church has set, for me, the new lead standard. The music was a Haas, Haugen & Co. songfest, led by the ghastliest and most heavily amplified soloist under whom I have ever withered. If tonality were geography this poor woman was in Kuala Lumpur not Maine; her timbre would obviate the need for a band saw in a machine shop. The organist must have learned at the feet of the late John Kiley in Fenway Park, with his appliance set at warp-speed vibrato throughout (even during Communion), everything fortissimo, of course.

Happily, the priest (as has been my experience at virtually all Catholic churches) was wonderful. He was a guest celebrant, making the pitch for his mission in his native Lesotho. Despite the horrendous crime and poverty in his homeland, he elected to stay there and do God's work, somehow maintaining a sense of humor as well, e.g. advising us the first collection of the mass was merely a "test to see if we were still awake," that we should "pay no attention to it at all" and save all for the second collection. Had I not already made a check out, I would have complied better with the good man's instructions. His godliness more than compensated for the aforementioned unpleasantries.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Summer Vacation

(Image courtesy of Ninja Airlines.)

Your Bloviator is heading off to the coast of Maine, where there will be no convenient Internet access, then to Bovina, where dial-up service is so slow and unreliable it's good for e-mail only; in short, little or no posting.

With the bald assumption interest in them will survive the hiatus, rants will begin anew toward the end of the month.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Shut Up and Play Your Guitar

There's a brand spanking new church in Venezuela, where they worship the Deity, of course, as well give a nod to God.
CABIMAS, Venezuela — From a makeshift chapel in a schoolhouse where a portrait of President Hugo Chávez and revolutionary slogans from his government adorn the entrance, the bishops of the new Reformed Catholic Church of Venezuela welcomed congregants to Sunday Mass.

Missionary Bishop Simón Alvarado, 39, strummed a guitar and led the small congregation in singing hymns. Bishop Coadjutor Jon Jen Siu-García, 37, preached a sermon on assisting the poor while his wife, Hiranioris Calles, 24, smiled at him from her seat on a white plastic chair.

“The church of Rome is fearful that it could lose more priests like us,” Bishop Siu-García said.
Beg to differ, Your Grace Alvarado, but I suspect Holy Mother Church prays fervently and daily she would lose more priests like you.

It's difficult to feel sorry for these pathetic stooges but I do. For when the inevitable occurs and the good people of Venezuela finally have had enough of the ruinous policies of El Maximo Chávez, they will dispatch him with no uncertainty then turn their wrath on his sycophants, including these tired relics of "liberation theology," dispatching them also; probably in a most unchristian way.

Behold His Mighty Hand

The latest plug from the McCain campaign is out, this one taking on Obamessianism. I particularly like the use of the clip from the "Ten Commandments," with Moses/Charlton Heston commanding the Red Sea waters to part while the Obama "presidential seal" emerges from the waves. Brilliant stuff, someone is really on the ball in the McCain campaign.

No doubt Barack will divine racism in this spot, too but he would be wiser to ease off broaching this poisonous subject. Other than for masochistic white liberal millionaires who just can't seem to get enough of it, Obama and his cronies' repeated accusations of "racism" will quickly get old for the vast majority of Americans.