I’m Shocked, Shocked!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010 \PM\.\Tue\.

Hattip to the Volokh Conspiracy.

From the Journal of Psychology, Public Policy and Law:

Lawyers’ litigation forecasts play an integral role in the justice system. In the course of litigation, lawyers constantly make strategic decisions and/or advise their clients on the basis of their perceptions and predictions of case outcomes. The study investigated the realism in predictions by a sample of attorneys (n = 481) across the United States who specified a minimum goal to achieve in a case set for trial. They estimated their chances of meeting this goal by providing a confidence estimate. After the cases were resolved, case outcomes were compared with the predictions. Overall, lawyers were overconfident in their predictions, and calibration did not increase with years of legal experience.  Female lawyers were slightly better calibrated than their male counterparts and showed evidence of less overconfidence. In an attempt to reduce overconfidence, some lawyers were asked to generate reasons why they might not achieve their stated goals. This manipulation did not improve calibration.

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Will The L.A. Bishops Take Their Own Advice?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010 \PM\.\Tue\.

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On June 3, Bishop Gabino Zavala, auxiliary bishop of Los Angeles and Chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Communications Committee, delivered a talk on Catholic media in general, and in one portion of the talk, the Catholic blogosphere. Bishop Zavala made some very good points.

First, he called upon Catholic media to “Speak the truth out of a love for the Church, and a love for the people of God.”

Next, and this one I particularly liked, the bishop called for the Catholic media to

always proceed with humility and civility. The humility comes from the realization that none of us have all the facts of a story. There are always other perspectives beyond our own. Committing to civility means moving away from positions of attacking…

Indeed! Finally, Zavala expressed his hope that the Catholic media would “always work to present Church teaching fairly and accurately.” I couldn’t have said it better.

On the blogosphere in particular, finally, the bishop expressed the following thought:

[W]e are particularly concerned about blogs that engage in attacks and hurtful, judgmental language. We are very troubled by blogs and other elements of media that assume the role of Magisterium and judge others in the Church. Such actions shatter the communion of the Church that we hold so precious.

This talk certainly made the position of the bishops on Catholic media and the blogs quite clear. One nagging question remains, however: does it apply to the bishops themselves?

For instance, does it apply to Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles – Zavala’s boss, no less – whom on April 18th denounced the immigration law in Arizona as “German Nazi and Russian Communist techniques”, and without any evidence claimed that the law mandates that “people are required to turn one another in to the authorities on any suspicion of documentation”?

By the criteria set forth by Zavala, Cardinal Mahony owes the state of Arizona, its lawmakers, officials and citizens who support the law, an apology.

Read the rest and comment here.


Vatican Weighs in On Middle East Christian Crisis

Tuesday, June 8, 2010 \PM\.\Tue\.

The Vatican  released a working paper during Pope Benedict XVI’s pilgrimage to Cyprus to prepare the way for a crisis summit of Middle East bishops in Rome. What I take away from this- along with the Holy See’s call for lifting the blockade of Gaza- is something of a vindication for my more raw views urging for a sea change in American Catholic opinion and action regarding the overall situation in the Middle East, and in Israel-Palestine in particular.

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A Moving Moment Outside The World’s Largest Abortion Mill

Tuesday, June 8, 2010 \PM\.\Tue\.

An inspiring scene of Ramon refusing to cater for the new super abortion mill in Houston.

To help eliminate the world’s largest abortion mill in Houston contact the following groups:

Life Advocates of Houston

Texas Right to Life

Houston Coalition for Life

Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.

— Holy Gospel of Saint Luke 23:34 cf.

Ora pro nobis!


Farfour Mouse is Dead

Tuesday, June 8, 2010 \AM\.\Tue\.

Farfour Mouse was a popular character on the Tomorrow’s Pioneers show on the Hamas Al-Aqsa network in Gaza.  I say was, because as you can see in the above video an “Israeli” killed off the Mickey Mouse clone.  This kiddie-prop  reminded me of a real Disney cartoon, Education for Death, which appeared in 1943 and illustrated how the Nazis educated a child to grow up to be one of their Aryan supermen destined for death on one of the battlefields in Hitler’s War.

I will have to hand the Nazi’s one thing, their propaganda tended to have better production values.  The Hamas version definitely is hate propaganda for youngsters done on the cheap.  Here we have Farfour, before his “martyrdom”, telling his kiddie viewers of the necessity of fighting the Jews.  

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