Wednesday, September 15, 2010 \PM\.\Wed\.
“Only the Good Die Young” is my vote for “Pop Songs Belonging in Hell”. As a kid growing up I must have heard this little ditty a few thousand times, and it ticks me off every time it pops up as a catch-phrase or oldies background music in restaurants or elevators. I know that there are all kinds of music that go deeper into the depths of hell by way of their lyrical content- but this is one of those little reminders of how commonplace it was to grow up with bad or just annoying influences- putting little ugly mantras into your psyche with some kind of riff or beat to make the poison go down like cyanide-laced Kool-Aid.
I pray that Billy Joel converts some day and orders all reminders of this song to be destroyed. Anyone else have any classic pop songs that just won’t go away- leaving behind some permanent trace of immoral brainwash?
Tuesday, August 31, 2010 \PM\.\Tue\.
Before the Charlie Weiss era I used to root for Notre Dame as my Number 2 selection after my childhood religion The Ohio State University. After discovering that Weiss was seemingly proud of being an excessive abuser of profanity ( an entire 60 Minutes piece seemed to revolve around how cute everyone thought it was that Notre Dame’s coach loved to heap profanity out in liberal portions- including the school’s priest-president), I decided to drop cheering for Notre Dame football- for what would it be for Our Lady University to succeed on the field but lose her soul in the locker-room.
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Saturday, August 21, 2010 \PM\.\Sat\.
I just lost a young friend to cancer, I watched my own stepfather die of the type of cancer that is now afflicting Christopher Hitchens, I am only concerned here with two things- his conversion and his bodily healing.
I never “hated” Hitchens, I didn’t always disagree with his politics, but his extreme views against Faith/Belief in God were indicative of something missing on the inside for him. In this interview he speaks a little about the trauma of suicide in his family- particularly his mother. It seems to me that the little child within all of us eventually wins out- if that child longs for love and innocence then faith will come more easily. If that little child is damaged by traumatic events very much outside of his control- well he may well give over to a sort of hopelessness and despair.
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Saturday, August 21, 2010 \AM\.\Sat\.
(from anarkismo.net) (photo)
I was watching the documentary “Shake Hands With The Devil: The Journey of Romeo Dallaire” tonight, and there were disturbing charges made against the Catholic Church concerning the role of Catholics and the local and Vatican Hierarchies in doing little or nothing to reduce the factional tensions. Here is an article that makes a more direct case against our fellow Catholics http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2010/mar/29/pope-catholics-rwanda-genocide-church.
I am one who believes that the official teachings and the Sacraments of the Catholic Church are the places of security for us as Christian believers, but the administrative decisions and the actions of individual Catholic laity/clergy are not protected from error or sin by the Holy Spirit. So, I would like to know more about the role of my brother and sister Catholics in the lead-up to (and direct actions), during the genocide of 1994. Was the Catholic Hierarchy in Rwanda (as well the representatives of the Vatican) teaching a vigorous message of non-violence, anti-tribalism, and informing the global community of the scope of the man-made horrors in the attempt to bring in the international community to halt the spread of violence? I want to know because I often feel that we Catholics are our own worst enemies in what we do and what we fail to do as ambassadors for Christ and His Church. But I don’t want to jump to hasty conclusions that unfairly charge fellow Catholics with horrible accusations. So, does anyone know more about all of this? Is there a need to acknowledge some more self-inflicted Catholic damage to the mission of promoting the Good News? Or should we be defending the overall Catholic effect before, during, and after the genocide?
Monday, August 2, 2010 \PM\.\Mon\.
Last night around 2am, in my sleep-deprived state (having a newborn, 2 year-old, 6 and 10 year-olds as well), I was watching C-Span and an interview with Ralph Nader. I believe I heard him say that he has been attempting to get Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, or Rush Limbaugh to debate him in a neutral setting. He called them out as “Cowards” for refusing him to this point. He also called their format/style as that of “Cowardly Silioquy” whereupon they silence any question they don’t like by switching off guest’s mikes.
I think this challenge should be answered- no matter where you stand or who you prefer in this mix, I have to give the man who calls for an honest debate the winner -in my own estimation- until someone steps up and accepts the challenge. It would seem a fair fight given the vocations of all of these men- if someone is going to be a public media figure who specializes in political material- that puts them in a category where they should be able to manage a genuine debate scenario.
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Wednesday, July 21, 2010 \AM\.\Wed\.
The pro-Israel dogmatists here in the U.S. like to invoke the idea that if the Palestinians would just lay down their arms, they would have the peace they ostensibly want- but this notion is an inaccurate one- it way overestimates the good intent of the Israeli leadership and possibly the majority in the Israeli society. If we just look at the time period after the Oslo Accords- that lengthy time between Intifadas- the number of Israeli settlers doubled in the Occupied Territories. The facts on the ground convinced the Palestinians that the Israeli leadership was just using the time to entrench, and make it less likely that the 1967 borders (that were internationally indicated as offering the best chance for a boundary between Israel and a new Palestinian State) would still be a possibility as the years wore on. This was the primary root cause of the Second Intifada which was incredibly more violent all around than the first. The Palestinians are usually seen by the majority of Americans as the bad guys, the ones who just refuse to seek peace with the Israelis- the ones who refuse even to recognize the right of Israel to exist- but it is the Palestinian situation that is so much more desperate, and their right to exist as a viable, contiguous State has hardly been one respected by Israeli and American leaders over the years- not in real terms, even if the rhetoric and official statements sometimes indicates such an acknowledgment. Read the rest of this entry »