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Thursday, December 24, 2009

Gloria in Excelsis Deo

(Annunciation to the Herders – Govert Flink, 1639)

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

- Luke 2: 8-14

Idea and image stolen, with thanks, from Robbo's blog.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Plumbing the Shallows

According to this piece, the only "success" to come out of the Copenhagen conference was the continued perpetration of an out-and-out fraud, the market for carbon exchanges. Since those transactions are overseen by the United Nations, allegations of fraud should raise no eyebrows but an allegation our President played a significant part in keeping the market going, and did so in a particularly boorish way, should raise eyebrows.

Mr. Obama has already fairly well established himself as an empty suit but if this account of his behavior in Copenhagen is true, he is an arrogant fool as well.

One of the President's more outlandish campaign promises was that the rise of the ocean levels would begin to slow during his presidency. Apparently they are, even going down, for he is appearing increasingly out of his depth.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Mr. President I'm Beginning To Smell A Big Fat Commie Rat

It doesn't come as a great surprise to learn, via Matt Barber at, that the impetus behind the secularization of Christmas, e.g. "Happy Holidays" and the banishment of crèches from the public square, is communistic. None other than the late Ronald Reagan provides an earlier example.

...As part of an effort to suppress the Gospel message and the spread of Christianity in Soviet Russia, Communist leaders secularized a favorite Ukrainian Christmas carol, "Nova Radist Stala" (Joyous News Has Come to Us).

One verse originally began: "The joyous news has come which never was before. Over a cave above a manger a bright star has lit the world, where Jesus was born from a virgin maiden...."


The new version went: "The joyous news has come which never was before, a red star with five tails has brightly lit the world." A second rewrite went further: "The joyous news has come which never was before. Long-awaited star of freedom lit the skies in October [the month of the Revolution]." The rewrite continued: "Where formerly lived the kings and had the roots their nobles, there today with simple folks, Lenin's glory hovers."

Barber, like all Christians, is confident the gates of hell shall not prevail against Christ's Church.

And although, despite the best efforts of Communists abroad and ACLU-types here at home, we're nonetheless assured in Scripture that, "Every knee will bow...and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord" (Philippians 2:10-11). I still think that a politically correct greeting of "Happy Holidays" – well-meaning as it may be – nonetheless deserves a hearty "Merry Christmas" in return.

Don't you?

Yep, I do.

Thanks to Augustine.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Not Bowing, Begging

"Give ear, O LORD, unto my prayer; and attend to the voice of my supplications."

This god, however, does not show mercy.

Friday, December 18, 2009

They Might Try Googling It

Damian Thompson of the Telegraph makes an interesting discovery:

Damian Thompson

Damian Thompson is Blogs Editor of the Telegraph Media Group.

The useful search facility on the Catholic bishops' website

I was bored just now, so I tried a little experiment using the excellent search function on the website of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales:



That the British bishops can be as awful ours is confirmed by a commenter, who reports a search on "paedophilia" returned zero matches.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Bishop of Rome and All His Detestable Enormities

From the Catholic News Agency:

Actor Sam Elliot has blamed the Catholic Church for stopping sequels from being made to the Golden Compass movie based on the first book of Philip Pullman’s atheistic trilogy His Dark Materials. The film, starring Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig and Eva Green, grossed more than $380 million worldwide after its Christmas 2007 release, but took in only $85 million in the U.S. According to the Internet Movie Database, the film had a budget of $180 million.

“The Catholic Church happened to The Golden Compass, as far as I'm concerned,” Elliot remarked to the Evening Standard.

He said the movie did “incredible” at the box office but the Catholic Church “lambasted” the filmmakers and “scared off” New Line Cinema executives.

I'm so proud I could burst!

Thanks to Mr. Johnson.

The Republicans are Beyond Redemption

Byron York writes in the Washington Examiner:

This morning I asked a well-connected House source why several Republican lawmakers decided to accompany Speaker Nancy Pelosi on her trip to the global warming summit in Copenhagen. After all, most of the GOP lawmakers believe the whole exercise is misguided, right? "Congressional delegations are almost always (if not always) bipartisan, even if the parties violently disagree," I was told. "Our guys went to make sure voices other than just the Speaker's were heard."


Sensenbrenner's office says he will "closely follow" several issues at the Copenhagen conference, including "the developing world's demands for wealth transfers, the levels of commitment from developing countries [and] the feasibility of greenhouse gas reduction targets." With him are Republican Reps. Joe Barton, Fred Upton, Shelley Moore Capito, John Sullivan, and Marsha Blackburn. Fourteen Democrats are on the trip, including the Speaker.

The Republican Party platform since 1988: "Reliably less reprehensible than the Democrats." That just doesn't cut it anymore.

O wad some power the giftie gie us To see oursel's as ithers see us

What about about hearing us? Ever wonder what our language sounds like to those those who don't speak it? Wonder no more.

Thanks to John J. O'Sullivan™

Monday, December 14, 2009

Not Exactly Earthshaking

From the Washington Examiner:

New study: More Democrats than Republicans believe in ghosts, talking with the dead, fortunetellers

A new study by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life reveals some startling differences between Republicans and Democrats on issues of spirituality and supernatural phenomenon.

The study, "Many Americans Mix Multiple Faiths," reports that a significant number of Americans practice a mixture of religious beliefs, and "many also blend Christianity with Eastern or New Age beliefs such as reincarnation, astrology and the presence of spiritual energy in physical objects." The report is not specifically about partisan differences, but the results of the study are broken down by party affiliation, among many other categories. And the news on that front is that Democrats are far more likely to believe in supernatural phenomenon than Republicans.
If people will believe Al Gore's infantile babbling on global warming, that we went to war in Iraq only for the oil or in the efficacy of any and all legislation passed or being considered by Congress this session, it hardly requires an additional leap of faith to believe in astrology or reincarnation.

(h/t For What It's Worth.)

Friday, December 11, 2009

Kirkus Reviews RIP

Kirkus Reviews is closing
. Founded by Virginia Kirkus in 1933 it served professional book buyers (libraries and independent bookstores, mainly), helping them decide whether or not a title was worth stocking. Kirkus relied on an army of freelance critics, one being your Bloviator years back, who provided short, pithy and often caustic take downs of authors who, apparently, had no shame for the arborcide committed on their behalf. Reviewers had to stick to a rigid format but otherwise were given free rein. Authors would protest and Kirkus dutifully passed on their complaints to reviewers but, like a priest hearing confession, never, ever betrayed their identities; which, of course, only encouraged us to be even nastier.

It wasn't all vitriol. I remember receiving heartfelt thanks from an Australian writer whose history of sugar I had warmly praised. He felt (rightly, I think) his opus had been ignored by the mainstream press and he was grateful to me for the attention. Those thanks were more gratifying to me (believe it or not) than all the fun I had writing mean reviews of the numerous crappy books Kirkus also sent my way.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

When Lefties Have Too Much Time on Their Hands...

They churn out crap like this.
Children's favourite Thomas the Tank Engine has been attacked by a Canadian academic [Shauna Wilton] for its "conservative political ideology" and failure to adequately represent women.

The show's right-wing politics shows the colourful steam engines punished if they show initiative or oppose change, the researcher found.

She also highlighted the class divide which sees the downtrodden workers in the form of Thomas and his friends at the bottom of the social ladder and the wealthy Fat Controller, Sir Topham Hatt, at the top.
Still have doubts this dame has too much time on her hands? Doubt no more.
She then analysed the plots, characters and other aspects of 23 different episodes to draw her conclusions, which she then presented at a conference of political science in Canada.

Oppressor of women and right-wing conspirator

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Fair and Balanced: We Decide

If (for some reason) you enjoy the sound of loud derisive snorting recite to any lefty the slogan of Fox News: "Fair and balanced: you decide." Today however, holding your head close to your monitor, you just might hear loud snorting emanating from those differently political. Politico reports National Public Radio is leaning heavily on political correspondent Mara Liasson to quit her other job on Fox News because of their horror at that network’s "political bias."

Although they insist it's mere co-incidence, the brass at NPR began putting pressure on Liasson about the same time the White House began its imbecilic and ill-fated "war" against Fox News. Despite Liasson's reliable progressive credentials, NPR apparently worries her just associating with Fox will sully its sterling reputation with the "public," white upper-income liberals, so they're egging her to leave.

Fox responded appropriately: “With the ratings we have, NPR should be paying us to even be mentioned on our air;” but the prize goes to former congressman Joe Scarborough who, on his program on MSNBC (which is even more biased toward the left than NPR but still able, somehow, to accommodate a paleo-conservatives like him) offered this delightfully nuanced take on NPR's ham-fisted attempt at sanitizing its staff.
Well I just want to say, I love NPR and I listen to NPR, but I’ve been listening to reformed, pot-smoking hippies for the past thirty years on NPR with a very substantial left-wing bias – and I don’t care that they eat tree bark like Euell Gibbons, and I don’t care if they are still smoking pot in their sixties. They put on great radio. But for NPR – for NPR, the leadership at NPR to question the bias of Fox News is a joke.
(Thanks to Fr. C.)

Monday, December 07, 2009

The Real Santa

Behold the rather fierce countenance of Santa Claus, aka St. Nicholas of Myra. A facial anthropologist in England, using photographs and x-rays taken of the remains of the saint when they were temporarily exhumed in the '50s from his crypt in Bari, has come up with this recreation of his face. Note the busted nose, more likely the result of torture than brawling according to the official St. Nicholas website. It seems to me however that the heretic Arius, after being knocked upside the head by Nicholas at the Council of Nicaea, might simply have returned the gift from Santa.

(Thanks to GR.)

Saturday, December 05, 2009

The Delphic Oracle Speaks

The mighty Tina Brown on Barack Obama:
I have come to the conclusion that the real reason this gifted communicator has become so bad at communicating is that he doesn’t really believe a word that he is saying.
Astonishingly, there are those who came to that conclusion before Ms. Brown did.