Charlie's Blog: January 2017

1.29.2017

St. John Vianney on the Word of God


I often think that most of the Christians are lost for want of instruction- they do not know their religion well.
ST. JOHN VIANNEY

MY CHILDREN, the Word of God is of no little importance! These were Our Lord's first words to His Apostles: "Go and teach" . . to show us that instruction is before everything.

My children, what has taught us our religion? The instructions we have heard. What gives us a horror of sin? What makes us alive to the beauty of virtue, inspires us with the desire of Heaven? Instructions. What teaches fathers and mothers the duties they have to fulfill towards their children and children the duties they have to fulfill towards their parents? Instructions.

My children, why are people so blind and so ignorant? Because they make so little account of the Word of God. There are some who do not even say an Our Father and a Hail Mary to beg of the good God the grace to listen to it attentively, and to profit well by it. I believe, my children, that a person who does not hear the Word of God as he ought, will not be saved; he will not know what to do to be saved. But with a well-instructed person there is always some resource. He may wander in all sorts of evil ways; there is still hope that he will return sooner or later to the good God, even if it were only at the hour of death. Instead of which a person who has never been instructed is like a sick person -- like one in his agony who is no longer conscious: he knows neither the greatness of sin nor the value of virtue; he drags himself from sin to sin, like a rag that is dragged in the mud....

My children, you make a scruple of missing holy Mass, because you commit a great sin in missing it by your own fault; but you have no scruple in missing an instruction. You never consider that in this way you may greatly offend God. At the Day of Judgment, when you will all be there around me, and the good God will say to you, "Give Me an account of the instructions and the catechisms which you have heard and which you might have heard," you will think very differently.


My children, you go out during the instructions, you amuse yourselves with laughing, you do not listen, you think yourselves too clever to come to the catechism ... do you think, my children, that things will be allowed to go on so? Oh no, certainly not! God will arrange matters very differently. How sad it is! We see fathers and mothers stay outside during the instruction; yet they are under obligation to instruct their children; but how can they teach them? They are not instructed themselves All this leads straight to Hell. It is a pity!

My children, I will give you an example of what it is not to believe what priests tell you. There were two soldiers passing through a place where a mission was being given; one of the soldiers proposed to his comrade to go and hear the sermon, and they went. The missionary preached upon Hell. "Do you believe all that this priest says?" asked the least wicked of the two. "Oh, no ! " replied the other, "I believe it is all nonsense, invented to frighten people." "Well, for my part, I believe it; and to prove to you that I believe it, I shall give up being a soldier, and go into a convent." "Go where you please; I shall continue my journey." But while he was on his journey, he fell ill and died. The other, who was in the convent, heard of his death, and began to pray that God would show him in what state his companion had died. One day, as he was praying, his companion appeared to him; he recognized him, and asked him, "Where are you?" "In Hell; I am lost!" "O wretched man! do you now believe what the missionary said?" "Yes, I believe it. Missionaries are wrong only in one respect; they do not tell you a hundredth part of what is suffered here. "


My children, I often think that most of the Christians are lost for want of instruction- they do not know their religion well. For example, here is a person who has to go and do his day's work. This person has a desire to do great penances, to pass half the night in prayer; if he is well instructed, he will say, "No, I must not do that, because then I could not fulfill my duty tomorrow; I should be sleepy, and the least thing would put me out of patience; I should be weary all the day, and I should not do half as much work as if I had rested at night; that must not be done. "

Again, my children, a servant may have a desire to fast, but he is obliged to pass the whole day in digging and ploughing, or whatever you please. Well, if this servant is well instructed, he will think, "But if I do this, I shall not be able to satisfy my master." Well, what will he do? He will eat his breakfast, and mortify himself in some other way. That is what we must do -- we must always act in the way that will give most glory to the good God.

A person knows that another is in distress, and takes from his parents what will relieve that distress. He would certainly do much better to ask than to take it. If his parents refuse to give it, he will pray to God to inspire a rich person to give the alms instead of him. A well-instructed person always has two guides leading the way before him - good counsel and obedience.

1.28.2017

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 39


Some have been thought brave because they were afraid to run away.
HENNY YOUNGMAN

1. TRUMP ON THE JOB

Wow. You can definitely tell a new sheriff is in town with this guy. Donald Trump has hit the ground running. If every week is like this one, I will be sick of winning in about a month. I am impressed. Trump is off to a good start.

Part of the reason that Trump has been so constructive in the first week is because Obama was so destructive even up to the final hours of his administration. All of this activity is executive order stuff, so Trump has merely reversed what the last guy did. Had Obama not overdone it, Trump wouldn't have so much to do or the power to do it.

I don't agree with all that Trump is doing. I think he is a mercantilist on trade policy, and he seems to be a Keynesian on fiscal policy. I don't see how these can be good things. The biggest thing Trump needs to do is balance the budget. Yet, the guy wants to spend a trillion on infrastructure. FDR would like this sort of thing, and I might like it if we had the money. But this will be debt spending. Either this will be Trump Tower, or this will be the disastrous Trump Taj Mahal. I just remember that Reagan didn't balance his budget either.

Trump's efforts to repeal Obamacare and cut all those regulations will be a shot in the arm for American businesses. The one area I agree with Trump is that we need a reinvigorated private sector. It can't hurt to be pro-business. That will be bring back jobs and revenue. At the least, I am hoping it will cut the sleeves off the straitjacket I have felt locked in for the last eight years.

As for the wall, I support it. I know someone who works in immigration, and I agree with her when she says that it isn't a big deal to send people back home. That part gets forgotten. When people get deported, they don't go to prison or to Hell. They just go home. And if they want to be Americans, do it the legal way.

2. POPE FRANCIS VS. KNIGHTS OF MALTA

The Knights of Malta crossed Pope Francis, and they lost. What Pope Francis doesn't understand is that he has lost by disgracing himself and this pontificate with his Mafia style leadership. He brings scandal to the Roman Catholic Church by striking down those who stand for the One True Faith.


I pray for the Holy Father on a daily basis, but I find myself praying for his contrition and repentance over these matters. Francis is a modernist. I am no fool, and I refuse to engage in the papolatry that tries to cover over these things. I am no Lefebvrist or sedevacantist. I believe Pope Francis is the successor of Peter and holds the keys legitimately. I also believe that he is abusing his power to advance the modernist agenda especially when it comes to allowing communion to adulterers in defiance of what our Lord teaches.

I believe the Lord allows us to endure trials for our benefit. Pope Francis is the trial for those who sincerely believe in the Lord and adhere to the Magisterium. Francis is not the first bad pope to occupy that chair, but I suspect he may be the worst as even the bad popes preceding him left the doctrine untouched.

I have endured eight years of a really bad president, so I can endure this pontificate. I have been through so much that I consider pain and adversity to be the default setting of life. Strength is built through enduring these things. I offer up these sufferings on behalf of the Holy Father. For the sake of the Church and his soul, I pray that he repents and sees the light.

3. GOOD SAMARITANS ARE SMART SAMARITANS



Father Martin is without a doubt the dumbest tweeter on Twitter. I have seen other priests call him out on his doctrinal errors, his unabashed support for sodomy under the guise of "tolerance," and on and on. So, with this tweet, we see Father Martin advocating opening our nation's doors wide open to rapists and murderers. Yet, Trump is not closing the door to these refugees. He is simply putting up a velvet rope and vetting these people to try and eliminate what has happened in Europe--rape and murder by terrorists masquerading as refugees.

Being humane and merciful doesn't mean being stupid. Father Martin is a complete idiot. I mean that in the nicest way possible, but you would be a fool to listen to this fool. His version of the good Samaritan would be to help the robbers instead of the victim in the name of mercy. This is stupid.

4. A VISION OF POPE ST. PIUS X

“I saw one of my successors taking to flight over the bodies of his brethren. He will take refuge in disguise somewhere and after a short retirement he will die a cruel death. The present wickedness of the world is only the beginning of the sorrows which must take place before the end of the world.”

5. QUOTABLE QUOTES

When shepherds of the flock are obedient to the magisterium entrusted to their exercise, then surely the numbers of the flock grow in obedience. If the shepherd isn’t obedient, the flock easily gives way to confusion and error.
CARDINAL BURKE

The modern man has already one-half the condition of salvation: he is miserable.
VENERABLE ARCHBISHOP FULTON SHEEN

Prior to capitalism, the way people amassed great wealth was by looting, plundering and enslaving their fellow man. Capitalism made it possible to become wealthy by serving your fellow man.
WALTER E. WILLIAMS

It is assumed that the skeptic has no bias; whereas he has a very obvious bias in favour of skepticism.
G.K. CHESTERTON

Much of the social history of the Western world over the past three decades has involved replacing what worked with what sounded good.
THOMAS SOWELL

More important than petition is adoration, for in it truth will come to us—the truth of life. Everyday cares will find their proper place and our standards will become rightly adjusted. This truth will comfort us; it will put in order what the entanglements and illusions of life have thrown into confusion. It will heal us spiritually so that we may begin anew.
FATHER ROMANO GUARDINI

6. ODDS AND ENDS

--I am enthusiastic about the election of a new prelate for Opus Dei. I pray that the Work will continue in the same path with the new father.

--God save the Queen because Prince Charlie is a disgrace.

--Sending your kids to public school in this day and time is tantamount to child abuse and neglect. Send them to a private school if you can afford it or homeschool if you can't.

--I don't know how much longer I will escape the Gestapo on Twitter. I am always one tweet away from getting banned.


7. LINKS OF INTEREST

Why Don’t We Build Beautiful Churches?

Where did Melchizedek come from?

The ideological purge at the Vatican

And you think it's a mess now? Wait until Bergoglio calls Vatican III -- are we about to live Fatima?

On Immigration, Fr. James Martin Wants to Shame Catholics with Bad Arguments

1.25.2017

A Response to Sister Theresa Aletheia Noble on Blogging


It sounds harsh but most of our opinions don’t really matter. The only thing that matters is truth and action, and that is not the same as opinion.
SISTER THERESA ALETHEIA NOBLE,

At the outset, I need to say that I am a fan of Sister Theresa, and it is a rare article that falls from her pen that doesn't get a retweet from me. She is always thought provoking. This particular article is no exception. In fact, it has provoked more thoughts than the norm. I can't even say if I agree or disagree with her. What I can say is that it has made me reflect a bit on blogging especially in the context of blogging on faith and morals.

The easiest criticism to make is that it sounds hypocritical for a Catholic blogger to be calling out the Catholic blogosphere. But that criticism rests on the assumption that all Catholic blogs are the same. There is a wide divergence between Mark Shea and Rorate Caeli. Yet, the one thing they share in common is a willingness to traffic in controversy. I am going to go out on a limb here and assume that Sister Theresa is writing about those blogs that are more about creating heat than shedding light.

What is the difference between heat and light? Heat is where people share opinions and gossip. Light is where people share truth about faith and morals. The problem here today is that we have a lot of heat created by Pope Francis with Amoris Laetitia over an issue of faith and morals. Orthopraxy flows from orthodoxy. It does not flow from heterodoxy.

When prelates and priests counsel people to take the body and blood of our Lord unworthily as a consequence of living in an objective state of adultery, they lead people into serious error that could possibly damn their souls. This is truth, and it is controversial. This begs the question. When the popes, prelates, and priests teach and encourage error, who should call them out?

Catholic bloggers call out the sins of politicians and the world all the time. Whether it is abortion or indifference to the poor or that transgender lunacy, Catholic bloggers voice their opinions on these matters on a constant basis. Should they shut their mouths and just be holy by not getting an abortion or attending a gay wedding? Or, should they voice their opinions on these matters like Chesterton and Belloc before them? And, are they merely opinions?

I can agree that speaking without wisdom is foolishness. These fools abound, and they are tiring. We know these people as Protestants. Conversely, wisdom that is silent is cowardice. For a long time, disgusting priests have sexually abused children while bishops covered up for them and lay Catholics remained silent on it. Finally, the secular world spoke up in glee at the scandal and the shame that the Roman Catholic Church carries to this day. Should we remain silent on such things as this?

As a blogger and as a Catholic, I find myself following a very simple rule. When you know what you are talking about, speak up. When you don't know what you are talking about, shut up. Since knowing the difference can be difficult, you should err on the side of silence. Truth does not spoil like milk, so you can be patient in sharing it. But you still have to share it.

I disagree with Sister Theresa. The Church certainly needs our holiness, but it also needs our opinion. In my opinion, I think child molesting priests are a disgrace. In my opinion, a Vatican bank that launders drug money for organized crime is a disgrace. In my opinion, a Pope who preaches mercy while kneecapping those who stand for orthodoxy is a disgrace. It matters not if I am silent, speak my opinion, or these things come from the mouth of Satan. They remain what they are--a disgrace.


The Mafia have a name for it. It is the Code of Omerta. You keep your mouth shut. You do not interfere. Evil flourishes in this silence. Or, as Edmund Burke put it, "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." Silence in the face of evil is to do nothing.

How many evil things could have been prevented or defeated if people had spoken up? I tell you now that St. Thomas More's head would have remained on his neck and England would be Catholic today if more than two men had spoken up. Likewise, the scandals in our Church would not be what they are if more people had voiced their opinion or told what they knew.

It is a terrible thing to spread falsehoods and lies. But it is worse to hold back the truth from those who have a right to it. The truth cannot harm you. To hold back the truth from those who need it is a sin of omission. Whether it was prophets of the Old Testament or the apostles of the New Testament, the consequences of holding back the truth were severe. As St. Paul put it, "Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel." He knew what those prophets of old were told. If you are silent, there will be condemnation.



Catholics who blog and tweet the truth do a service to the Body of Christ. This includes a blogger like Sister Theresa. Blogging is no substitute for personal holiness, but it is not incompatible with holiness either. We should certainly remove the logs from our own eyes, but we are still under the duty to remove the specks from the eyes of others. Certainly, there are those bloggers who do a disservice, but we do not damn all newspapers because of the libels published in the supermarket gossip rags.

I think Sister Theresa suffers from the internal conflict that plagues all sincere Catholic bloggers. Am I being truthful? Am I being charitable? This is certainly a good thing since we don't want those logs in our own eyes. But this endless internal conflict leads to timidity and lack of confidence. We doubt ourselves into passivity, and we let the children burn to death in the house fire because we are afraid we might screw up the rescue attempt. I tell you now that neither St. Paul nor St, Catherine ever gave it a thought. Their love for the other made them forget that they were sinners. Love is what pulls the logs from our eyes and the eyes of others.

Sister Theresa strikes me as someone of sanctity and great love. As a religious, she does not enjoy the freedom that laypeople like myself have at our disposal. I do not labor under the vows she has made. The Church needs the religious to perform their roles and do their jobs. Likewise, the Church also needs the laity to respond to the universal call to holiness but to also use their freedom to call out priests and religious when they err and stray. This is one of the blessings of Vatican II. Despite the charges of the critics, that council exposed the disease and provided the cure. The cure is an empowered laity answering the call to holiness. The lay faithful are now the ones promoting and defending orthodoxy. There is an irony there I will save for another essay. As for this one, I don't see the sin in telling people to change their ways.


1.22.2017

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 38


It's hard to be an artist. It's hard to be anything. It's hard to be.
BILL MURRAY

1. TRUMP INAUGURATION

It was surreal watching Trump being sworn in. I can honestly say that I was one of the doubters. I didn't think he would make it to the White House. But there he is. And, it feels great.

I am a conservative, but I was not one of the #NeverTrump crowd. For those people who were just too principled to cast their ballot for Trump, how are you feeling now? Don't you feel a bit relieved that Hillary isn't sitting in the Oval Office now? If you feel relief, you're welcome. It was sell outs like me who held our noses and voted for a flawed candidate that has spared you four years of that crooked bitch.

What happens now? Time will tell. But I see this as the opposite of when Reagan came into office. Reagan was a conservative who had to turn to Republican moderates to advance his agenda. They blunted it instead. Trump is a moderate who must turn to Republican conservatives to advance his agenda. I know Trump is not a conservative, but he will be pushed in that direction by both conservatives and liberals. I have low expectations concerning Trump, but I may be pleasantly surprised by what he gets done. And, I will be praying for the man just like I did for Obama.

2. UNCLE TOMFOOLERY

Take a black man. Give him a good upbringing in a two parent home. Have him be a churchgoer, successful in academics, an honorable military career, or what have you. Have him be a faithful husband and father. Then, to top it all off, have him be a Republican. This man will be hated by the black community. They will disavow and disown him. His virtue will be a disgrace. And this, Gentle Reader, is why Black America remains mired in poverty, ignorance, welfare dependence, incarceration, and illegitimacy.

The black conservative cannot be tolerated. Where one exists, black people decry the black conservative as an "Uncle Tom." I am sick of this, and I call it out every time I see it. I see this name calling as every bit as bad or worse as racism. And why is this? The Klan member will vilify members of the black community as people who don't know the identity of their fathers, live on welfare, and perpetrate crimes on a daily basis while high on weed or drunk on malt liquor. Here is a picture of one of these thugs:


He looks like a quality individual. I'm sure he is a credit to his family and his community. The reality is that he is a rapper who glorifies violence in his lyrics and videos like many others, and his life will probably be as short as the lives of whoever he has shot. But, hey, at least he is not an Uncle Tom. He is the epitome of what Black America says their members should be which is the stereotype the KKK and the neo-Nazis paint of them.

When a black man defies the stereotypes, his own shoot him in the back. They would rather that he live down to what the racists say about blacks than live up to Christian virtue. In my book, those blacks who betray their own who live virtuously are the real Uncle Toms because they work in cooperation with their racist detractors. They help the KKK by living down to what the Klan says about them. And the Klan appreciates it.

Black America needs to return to being Christian and conservative once again like they were generations ago. When this happens, they will overcome the true obstacles in their lives. Those obstacles are the defects in their own characters, and the worthless leaders that say they can never be better while using the race card as an excuse for vice. Rebuild the black family and the black church, and you will make Black America great again.



3. MSM MELTDOWN

There is one thing I have learned from the recent election. The mainstream media is overwhelmingly leftist and secular. They carry water for Marx and the Devil. There has never been a candidate with as much dirt on her as Hillary Clinton given such a free ride while the media have jumped on both trifling and even false allegations concerning Donald Trump. Now that he is President, I expect four years of this non-stop harassment from the MSM.

I recommend people tune out the MSM. They should watch Fox News instead of CNN. They should listen to talk radio instead of NPR. They should cancel their subscriptions to the New York Times and the Washington Post and turn to conservative outlets like the Drudge Report. Go ahead and make a conservative echo chamber for yourself.

The argument against this move is that it replaces objective reporting with right wing propaganda. The problem is that objective reporting has largely vanished. The only people who seem to put the truth before their politics are Glenn Greenwald and Wikileaks.

Real journalism is concerned primarily with the facts. Those facts are published regardless of their political ramifications. The press has always had a leftward tilt, but they at least tried to be objective. With the 2016 election, the press dropped that pretense entirely. All media is partisan now.

This brings us to the next argument. Which side has a better likelihood of telling the truth? I can answer unequivocally that is the Right. This is because conservatives are fundamentally Christian in their ethics, and they believe the truth matters. This doesn't mean they always tell the truth. But at least they believe in truth. The Left are overwhelmingly secular, atheist, and Marxist. They don't care if anything is true or not. The end justifies the means. If their reporting happens to be true, that is even better. But they will always fall back on lies to advance their agenda.

4. DYLANN ROOF DEATH SENTENCE

Does Dylann Roof deserve to die for murdering nine people? Absolutely. By the same token, do we all deserve eternity in Hell for our offenses against God? Absolutely.

I am not a fan of the death penalty. This isn't a matter of justice since I believe the death penalty is a just penalty for murder. It isn't a matter of life since a murderer is not the same as an unborn infant. It is simply a matter of mercy. By allowing Dylann Roof to live, this gives him every opportunity to repent and find salvation for his soul.

Pope St. John Paul II was the one who promoted mercy for these condemned people. The only downside to suspending capital punishment is that it may embolden people to commit capital crimes. But evidence suggests that the death penalty makes no difference in the murder rate. This leaves the possibility that the criminal may kill again. But if this is a credible threat, the condemned should be executed the moment sentence is passed. Then, there is the fact that many on death row have been exonerated by the Innocence Project. I doubt Dylann Roof will be exonerated for his crimes, but a life sentence can be suspended. The death penalty cannot.

Let the bastard live.

5. SEEN ON TWITTER
6. TAKEN FROM A COMBOX

Add to demands for minimum wage increases, HUGE increases in the cost of business upon restaurant chains resulting from the forced imposition of OBAMACARE! Both these non market based "entitlements" result in reduced hours for employees and PRICE increases that either soak the customers or sink sales and the bottom lines of the businesses! 

My grandfather (who died in 1963) was a pastor who used to remind his congregation to always remember; "When you get something for NOTHING, it means that someone else got nothing for SOMETHING. Funny how that works isn't it? 

Government intervention is the beginning of the end for prosperity and economic expansion in a free enterprise system that always ends in socialism. But in spite of claims to the contrary government intervention can't repeal the laws of economics by deciding economic winners and losers. It can only incite both class and race wars that cause a stampede to raid the public treasury by the people because they've been made to feel "entitled."

7. Q & A

Q: Should Donald Trump abandon Twitter now that he is POTUS?

A: Absolutely not.

The real power of the internet is that it has allowed people to bypass the media gatekeepers and take their messages straight to the public. Sad to say, even a president must do this. For Trump, that Twitter account is power. For the rest of us, it should embolden us to use our own platforms and social media to bypass that same media that tries to squelch the message and the truth.

8. QUOTABLE QUOTES

Don't be a pessimist. Don’t you realize that all that happens or can happen is for the best?—Your optimism will be a necessary consequence of your faith.
ST. JOSEMARIA ESCRIVA

The spirit of humility is sweeter than honey.
ST. ANTHONY OF PADUA

There was never an angry man that thought his anger unjust.
ST. FRANCIS DE SALES

If you want all your prayers to be answered without fail and oblige God to meet all your wishes, the first thing is never to stop praying. Those who get tired after praying for a time are lacking in either humility or confidence, and so do not deserve to be heard. You would think that they expected their requests to be obeyed at once as if they were orders. Surely we know that God resists the proud and shows His favors to the humble. Won't our pride allow us to ask more than once for the same thing? It shows very little trust in God's goodness to give up so soon and take a delay for an absolute refusal.
ST. CLAUDE DE LA COLOMBIERE

Ponder the fact that God has made you a gardener, to root out vice and plant virtue.
ST. CATHERINE OF SIENA

It’s amazing how much panic one honest man can spread among a multitude of hypocrites.
THOMAS SOWELL

The best defense against usurpatory government is an assertive citizenry.
WILLIAM F. BUCKLEY, JR.

Opportunity is important but exertion is indispensable.
FREDERICK DOUGLASS

He that wrestles with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill. Our antagonist is our helper.
EDMUND BURKE

9. ODDS AND ENDS

--Nothing brightens the mood quite like having a Republican in the White House.

--When the MSM hits you, hit back.

--Ecumenism has now been reduced to bowing to murdering Muslims and capitulating to Lutherans more heretical than Luther.

--God bless Poland where Jesus Christ is King.

--France has an awesome king. Too bad they no longer have a throne for him.

--Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. The US embassy belongs in Jerusalem.

--Conservatives talk tough but are peaceful. Progressives talk peace and love, but they turn violent and will kill you.

--I feel I need to repeat this. I am against the Benedict Option. Rod Dreher's anthem of retreat is falling on deaf ears now.

--Madonna is a despicable whore now.

--He will always be Bradley Manning to me.

--Modern feminism is primarily about killing babies.

10. LINKS OF INTEREST

Is the US a Socialist State?

The Hardening of Hearts Caused by the Deceit of Sin


Will the Wicked Be Punished?

FRENCH ROYALISTS COMMEMORATE MURDER OF KING LOUIS XVI

Die-hard British atheist reveals shocking discovery of God in new book



1.16.2017

SOC 12


The best fighter is never angry.
LAO TZU

Today is Martin Luther King Day. I usually write something about the state of race relations in the USA on this day, but I don't feel like it this year. The reality of the situation is pretty clear. White society has become less racist while black society has become less virtuous. In the past, white masters would break up black families in heartbreaking fashion. And the atrocity was enforced with murder. Today, many black families are nothing more than unwed single mothers living on welfare while the fathers run the streets impregnating more females and killing each other. Somehow, this lack of virtue is the fault of white racist society.

If there is one overriding theme to this blog, it is the thesis that our society depends upon a Judeo-Christian ethic. Our society was great because our people were good. Our society is now terrible because we are no longer good. My remedy is simple. Be righteous. Forget about prosperity, power, and the rest. Become righteous. All the rest will be added unto you. I think Jesus said that.


Recently, I have been a bit miffed about the new Scorsese flick, Silence. I knew it was coming out over a year ago, and I knew the basic plot because of the novel written by Shusaku Endo. Here's the gist of the movie. Two Jesuits head to Japan back in the 1600's to find out what happened to their mentor who is rumored to have apostasized from the faith. When they arrive, they find the rumors to be true. Basically, the true believers are given a choice to renounce their faith or watch their fellow believers die excruciating deaths. It is one thing to die for your own faith. It is another thing to let others die for your faith.

Silence presents a classic moral dilemma. You are forced to do evil for the sake of the good. This is known as consequentialism. It is merely a variation on the Machivellian dictum that the end justifies the means. In the case of Silence, the end is saving the lives of other people. Naturally, the movie becomes an apologetic for apostasy.

I have not seen the film or read the novel. What I know about it comes from the reviews of others who have seen it. I will probably watch it when it comes to video as I hate going to the theater these days. It should not be a long wait as it seems to be flopping both critically and commercially. But I know enough about it to say that it is a bad movie.


The first thing that needs to be set out for you to know is that this film was directed by Martin Scorsese and represents a labor of love for him. The Gentle Reader needs to be reminded that Scorsese is the same man that brought us the blasphemous The Last Temptation of Christ. Scorsese is a lapsed Catholic in his fifth marriage with his four previous marriages all ending in divorce. He is your typical cradle Catholic who left the Church but feels that he has some birthright to criticize the Church and its teachings. Hollywood and the music industry are full of these apostates. They are easy to understand. They can't abide the Church's teachings, but they can't escape them either. Their consciences burn, but they cannot seek forgiveness and absolution for their sins. So, the new thing today is to try and meet these apostates halfway by offering them absolution without repentance on their part. This is called "mercy." This brings us to our second point.

The second thing you need to know about this movie is that it is not a Catholic film but a Jesuit film. Once upon a time, Jesuits were Catholic, but they have betrayed the charism of St. Ignatius of Loyola and have become the Society of Judas. If there are any tears in Heaven, they fall from the eyes of St. Ignatius over the demise of the order he founded. And if you think I am unfair in making this distinction, Jesuits will go out of their way to make it as well. The Jesuit badge has become their mark of distinction from the rest of Catholicism. Jesuits are different, and I agree with them on that point. They ain't Catholic.

Father James Martin of the Society of Judas provided consulting for the film, and it was screened at the Vatican. Pope Francis, a Jesuit, has also watched it. Basically, Silence gets the Jesuit endorsement. And there is a reason for this. Silence captures their current worldview. It is their movie. This is why it behooves us to understand it and refute it.


Once upon a time, the Jesuits were the good guys. A better novel for Scorsese to turn into a movie would be The Autobiography of a Hunted Priest which recounts Father John Gerard's efforts for the faith during the Recusant Period in England. Like Silence, it deals with Jesuits ministering in a hostile society. In the case of Gerard, he ran the risk of being hung, drawn, and quartered which has to be as fiendish as anything the Japanese could devise. The key difference between Silence and Hunted Priest is that Priest is a true story. Silence is a work of fiction. The other difference is that Priest encourages faith while Silence undermines it.

What happened to the Jesuits? The answer is obvious. They turned their eyes from Heaven and onto the world. This is why the Society of Judas is rife with liberation theology believers, social justice warriors, gay rights endorsers, and on and on. Basically, they are Marxists with clerical collars. It makes me appreciate true Marxists more because they at least do us the favor of not dressing in sheep suits and lying about their true motives.

Silence is the Jesuit movie because it tells in story form the decision many Jesuits make today to live a double life of faith and apostasy. In the movie, the Jesuits don't apostasize to save themselves but to save others. This is the gist of the social justice gospel. The spiritual is subordinated to the temporal. Jesus did not die to save our souls but to correct economic and social inequality. Somehow, this sell out of the faith to Satan is heroic. Nevermind that it isn't biblical, Christian, or Catholic.


The refutation of this apostasy is found in Jesus's response to His third temptation. Satan offers the world to our Lord if Jesus would just worship Satan. Basically, it is the same offer and extortion that the Japanese put to the Jesuits in Silence. And how does Jesus respond? "Get away, Satan! It is written: 'The Lord, your God, shall you worship and Him alone shall you serve.'"

There is nothing more precious than Jesus. Your love for Him should be so absolute that you would sacrifice everything you own and every person you love for His sake. If some evil person commands you to deny Christ or have someone killed if you refuse, the correct response is to not deny Christ. Even if it cost the lives of millions of people including your own loved ones, you should never deny our Lord even if the denial is as small as burning incense to the emperor or stepping on a fumi-e.


There can never be any justification for apostasy. Right is right, and wrong is wrong. The clever trick of the Devil is in the gray area of "extenuating circumstances." This is how you get things like abortion on demand. Somehow, babies need to die for the sake of some greater good.

Apostasy makes sense if atheism is true. If there is no God or afterlife, then you shouldn't even pretend to be religious. Go ahead and be a materialist, a Marxist, a hedonist, or whatever. What I don't get is how people can stop believing and still wear a collar. I have been an atheist, so I get atheism. I respect atheists because they are consistent. But I don't respect apostates and heretics who want to have it both ways. Either Jesus is real and we obey Him, or He isn't real and we forget Him.

The Society of Judas teaches that Jesus is real, but we should live in disobedience to Him. This makes them more satanic and evil than the atheists. How can I say this? Because this is the mind of Satan who believes and knows God is real yet refuses to serve. But the Society of Judas doesn't see themselves as disobedient but in service to the true Gospel that somehow got obscured over the centuries. Fortunately, these Jesuits are now privileged to reveal in our times what was hidden since the first century.

All of this nonsense is modernism which Pope St. Pius X declared to be the "synthesis of all heresies." To the modernist, religion is not an objective set of unchangeable facts but a subjective set of changeable beliefs. This is why modernists reject orthodoxy in favor of "spirituality." Spirituality is nothing more than do-it-yourself faith and morals. Even Scorsese says, "We shouldn't toss away spirituality." What is implied in this declaration is that we can toss away orthodoxy.

For me, the choice is clear. Either Jesus Christ was the Son of God, or it is all a bunch of crap. When I was an atheist, I was a complete atheist. I was not a pretend atheist dabbling in Wicca while trash talking Baptists like some of my peers in Godless Columbia. As an atheist, I lived in a stark and empty world. I lived like that for a decade. I had accepted that there was no God, and dying was merely the end of sensation. The only thing I believed in was not hurting people, but that belief was eroding considerably before God came back into my life. Had I not become Catholic, I would have become a monster.


What is a monster? For me, the definition of a monster is a person who jettisons all moral restraint and blunts his conscience to such a severe degree that no atrocity or crime is beyond him. One does not get there all at once. It is done by degrees. I was fighting the loss of the soul that I denied having.

The process of becoming a monster is a simple one. You begin with a small sin. For instance, you can linger on some nude image on the internet. Then, it becomes more images. Then, it is movies. Then, it is hardcore movies. Then, when these no longer thrill, they become pornography of a criminal and horrific nature. Then, these atrocities are committed in reality. Each step of the way takes you further down the road. The delusion is that it is only a small step down that road. The second delusion is that you can always turn around and go back. It is those delusions that bring a person into Hell.


The appeal of Star Wars is the story of a man who became a monster. He didn't get there all at once but was manipulated there by the satanic figure of Palpatine aka Darth Sidious aka the Emperor. It is no coincidence that those who embrace the Dark Side become disfigured as a result. This is because evil assaults the image of God in us. Evil can only be a parasite on the good.

Modernism in religion is merely a satanic disguise to get people to take the first step down the road to destruction. And that will be the justification. It is but a small thing. Do this one thing, and it will be over. But it never ends there. NEVER. Because the moment it is done, the Devil will never let you forget it.


This is the modus operandi behind Amoris Laetitia and the civil war in the Catholic Church that is now underway. By reintroducing ambiguity, Pope Francis has opened the door for the modernists to bring mayhem and destruction. Pope Francis is their guy. He was the pontiff they wanted while they bided their time under the previous two pontificates. This is the Pope who wants the doors of Europe opened wide to Muslims who rape and murder while trash talking young people with a fondness for the Latin Mass.

When the history is written about Pope Francis, it will be acknowledged that he was the worst pontiff in the history of Catholicism. Granted, there were ones worse in their personal behavior engaging in gross sins. But to their credit, none of them attempted to alter the doctrines of the Church. Pope Francis has done this with Amoris Laetitia and his refusal to clarify that document. The Holy Father has opened the backdoor for the wolves to slip in and devour the children in their sleep.

No one wants to say what I have just written in much the same way that no one wanted to declare that the emperor was naked. But there you have it. The Pope cannot proclaim heresy, but he can give the greenlight for others to do it for him. The history of the Roman Catholic Church shows time and again where popes have been ignored. Today, Pope Francis has put the Church on notice that he will look the other way as the modernists sow confusion and lead their flocks to spiritual death.

Where does this war end? I don't know. I don't have those gifts. I just know that the messages of our Lady and the Catholic mystics talk about a great apostasy to come and massive upheaval in the Church. None of this troubles me or disturbs me. This schism has always been submerged, but it is now clear and in the open. This is a chastisement. I don't know if it is the Great Chastisement, but we are definitely in a time of trial.

1.08.2017

St. John Vianney on the Prerogatives of the Pure Soul


Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
MATTHEW 5:8

NOTHING IS so beautiful as a pure soul. If we understood this, we could not lose our purity. The pure soul is disengaged from matter, from earthly things, and from itself. That is why the saints ill-treated their body, that is why they did not grant it what it required, not even to rise five minutes later, to warm themselves, to eat anything that gave them pleasure For what the body loses the soul gains, and what the body gains the soul loses.

Purity comes from Heaven; we must ask for it from God. If we ask for it, we shall obtain it. We must take great care not to lose it. We must shut our heart against pride, against sensuality, and all the other passions, as one shuts the doors and windows that nobody may be able to get in. What joy is it to the guardian angel to conduct a pure soul! My children, when a soul is pure, all Heaven looks upon it with love! Pure souls will form the circle round Our Lord. The more pure we have been on earth, the nearer we shall be to Him in Heaven. When the heart is pure, it cannot help loving, because it has found the source of love, which is God. "Happy," says Our Lord, "are the pure in heart, because they shall see God!"

My children, we cannot comprehend the power that a pure soul has over the good God. It is not he who does the will of God, it is God who does his will. Look at Moses, that very pure soul. When God would punish the Jewish people. He said to him: Do not pray for them, because My anger must fall upon this people. Nevertheless, Moses prayed, and God spared His people; He let Himself be entreated; He could not resist the prayer of that pure soul. my children, a soul that has never been stained by that accursed sin obtains from God whatever it wishes!

Three things are wanted to preserve purity- the presence of God, prayer, and the Sacraments. Another means is the reading of holy books, which nourishes the soul. How beautiful is a pure soul! Our Lord showed one to St. Catherine; she thought it so beautiful that she said, "O Lord, if I did not know that there is only one God, I should think it was one." The image of God is reflected in a< pure soul, like the sun in the water. A pure soul is the admiration of the Three Persons of the Holy Trinity. The Father contemplates His work: There is My creature! . . . The Son, the price of His Blood: the beauty of an object is shown by the price it has cost The Holy Spirit dwells in it, as in a temple.


We also know the value of our soul by the efforts the devil makes to ruin it. Hell is leagued against it - Heaven for it. Oh, how great it must be! In order to have an idea of our dignity, we must often think of Heaven, Calvary, and Hell. If we could understand what it is to be the child of God, we could not do evil -- we should be like angels on earth. To be children of God, oh, what a dignity!

It is a beautiful thing to have a heart, and, little as it is, to be able to make use of it in loving God. How shameful it is that man should descend so low, when God has placed him so high! When the angels had revolted against God, this God who is so good, seeing that they could no longer enjoy the happiness for which He had created them, made man, and this little world that we see to nourish his body. But his soul required to be nourished also; and as nothing created can feed the soul, which is a spirit, God willed to give Himself for its Food. But the great misfortune is that we neglect to have recourse to this divine Food, in crossing the desert of this life. Like people who die of hunger within sight of a well-provided table, there are some who remain fifty, sixty years, without feeding their souls.


Oh, if Christians could understand the language of Our Lord, who says to them, "Notwithstanding your misery, I wish to see near Me that beautiful soul which I created for Myself. I made it so great, that nothing can fill it but Myself. I made it so pure, that nothing but My Body can nourish it. "

Our Lord has always distinguished Pure souls. Look at St. John, the well-beloved disciple, who reposed upon His breast. St. Catherine was pure, and she was often transported into Paradise. When she died, angels took up her body, and carried it to Mount Sinai, where Moses had received the Commandments of the law. God has shown by this prodigy that a soul is so agreeable to Him, that it deserves that even the body which has participated in its purity should be buried by angels.

God contemplates a pure soul with love; He grants it all it desires. How could He refuse anything to a soul that lives only for Him, by Him, and in Him? It seeks God, and He shows Himself to it; it calls Him, and God comes; it is one with Him; it captivates His will. A pure soul is all-powerful with the gracious Heart of Our Lord. A pure soul with God is like a child with its mother. It caresses her, it embraces her, and its mother returns its caresses and embraces.

1.07.2017

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 37


When you battle with your conscience and lose, you win. 
HENNY YOUNGMAN

1. LITURGY WARS

There isn't a day that goes by where I do not read in the Catholic blogosphere or discuss with someone the Liturgy Wars in the Catholic Church. I call them Liturgy Wars because that is what it is. Say what you will, the Tridentine Mass had the supreme virtue of being unifying. Today, you have modernists with their Novus Ordo fighting the traditionalists with their Latin Mass with many faithful Catholics taking a position between these extremes. Regardless of liturgy, I think reverence should always be the aim.

People debate Latin and ad orientem, but I think a study of the history of liturgy can gave us great insight when it comes to the current liturgical debates. One of those things is the rood screen. For those unfamiliar with the term, a rood screen was essentially a barrier between the priest and the people. The priest would consecrate the elements behind the screen away from the people. Rood screens were ubiquitous in Catholic Churches before the Council of Trent and served a similar function as the iconostasis found in Orthodox Churches.


The Protestant Revolutionaries were zealous in their destruction of the rood screens seeing in them idolatry and separation. But the death knell for the rood screen came not from Protestants but from the Council of Trent. Here is a choice quotation fron Wikipedia on the matter:
The decrees of the Council of Trent (1545–1563) enjoined that the celebration of the Mass should be made much more accessible to lay worshippers; and this was widely interpreted as requiring the removal of rood screens as physical and visual barriers, even though the Council had made no explicit condemnation of screens. Already in 1565, Duke Cosimo de' Medici ordered the removal of the tramezzi from the Florentine friary churches of Sante Croce and Santa Maria Novella in accordance with the principles of the Council. In 1577 Carlo Borromeo published Instructionum Fabricae et Sellectilis Ecclesiasticae libri duo, making no mention of the screen and emphasizing the importance of making the high altar visible to all worshippers; and in 1584 the Church of the Gesù was built in Rome as a demonstration the new principles of Tridentine worship, having an altar rail but conspicuously lacking either a central rood or screen. Almost all medieval churches in Italy were subsequently re-ordered following this model; and most screens that impeded the view of the altar were removed, or their screening effect reduced, in other Catholic countries, with exceptions like Toledo Cathedral, Albi Cathedral, the church of Brou in Bourg-en-Bresse; and also in monasteries and convents, where the screen was preserved to maintain the enclosure. In Catholic Europe, parochial rood screens survive in substantial numbers only in Brittany, such as those at Plouvorn, Morbihan and Ploubezre .
As you can read, the Tridentine Mass was revolutionary in its changes. It changed architecture and the style of worship. Plus, it was provoked by those damn Protestants. The goal of these changes was to make the Mass more open and inclusive. Worshipers would participate instead of just sitting there in befuddlement practicing private devotions as the priest and his altar servers did their thing. You can see that Trent and the Novus Ordo had the same end in mind. It is ironic that rad trads today are so willing to go to the mattresses in defense of a traditional mass that broke with tradition in its day. If we are going to bring back Latin and ad orientem, why not the rood screen as well?

Much of my thinking about the liturgy is influenced by a priest who is passionate about the novus ordo mass but who also has a deep knowledge of the history behind our liturgy. His own mass in the ordinary form was thoroughly modern but utterly reverent in its expression. And I understand what he was getting at. He saw what the novus ordo could and should be. Meanwhile, masses in the extraordinary form benefit from the simple fact that both the priest and the people in the pews at a Latin Mass are very passionate and devoted to our Lord and are very reverent. Yet, it was not quite like this prior to Vatican II when the Tridentine Mass was the norm, and people would be fidegting in the pews. In the days of the rood screen, congregants basically operated an open air market and bazaar beyond the screen. You may laugh at this, but I would argue that the cry room present in many Catholic Churches is a reintroduction of the rood screen.


A study of the history of liturgy and reform brings me to one inescapable conclusion. Every solution breeds new problems. This is why I have no problem attending Mass in either the ordinary or the extraordinary form. I'm just not going to the mattresses myself over the issue. Both forms have their virtues and their problems.

The one thing that matters is reverence. When that is lacking, it doesn't matter what form it is in. Some would argue that the extraordinary form is inherently reverent, and I am inclined to agree. But wait until it is celebrated with a disengaged congregation in our smartphone era, and we can see the weakness there. Reverence is more about attitude than form.

2. POPE FRANCIS

It is obvious to virtually everyone that the sheepsuit has dropped off of Pope Francis, and he has decloaked to reveal a Society of Judas wolf underneath. A Protestant friend of mine candidly confessed his admiration for John Paul II but said he did not trust the current pope who cares more about global warming and Marxism than about the faith. Speaking for myself, I had enormous respect for both Pope St. John Paul II and St. Theresa of Calcutta when I was both a Protestant and an atheist. I respected them even if I disagreed with them. Now, I ask for their intercession daily.

Pope Francis is not in the same league as these saints. He brings scandal with him. I pray very much for the Holy Father, and I swear undying allegiance to the Vicar of Christ. But in the end, he is still a man. Ultimately, my allegiance is to Christ. Unfortunately, I think the allegiance of Pope Francis is to himself. I pray for his contrition and repentance.



3. Q&A

Q: Do you believe the Russians hacked, rigged, or influence the 2017 election in favor of Donald Trump?

A: My unqualified answer is no. Of course, evidence to the contrary may emerge, so I will qualify my answer.

I don't think voting machines were hacked or rigged except by Democrats. I do think the Democrat Party is as crooked as any mobster or foreign dictator. I think blue states have vote rigging in favor of Democrats. This happens mostly in cities where Democrats have iron fist control. On a recent pre-election trip to a state that Hillary won, I saw no stickers or posters for her anywhere. But I saw plenty of Trump stuff. Absent the crookedness, I don't think Hillary Clinton won a single state. This stuff needs to be investigated. The Russian thing is a red herring.

Do I think the DNC got hacked by the Russians? This is possible, but I think every other government hacked them as well. This is called "intelligence" which is something the USA engages in constantly. You can take it to the bank that the NSA has hacked some Russian servers and knows all sorts of stuff about Putin. But this hacking would have zero effect on the outcome of the election unless that information was delivered to Wikileaks. We know that it was. But was Russia the source? I doubt it.

I suspect that Russia may be guilty of hacking but not leaking. I think the murdered Seth Rich fellow may have been the source of the DNC info delivered to Wikileaks. The fact that Obama and the Democrats are willing to risk World War III over this makes me think they may have found no qualms about murdering a traitor to their cause.


This leaves the fact that Hillary lost because of that damning information that came from Wikileaks. In the worst case scenario, Russia did a fine job of journalism. They did what our mainstream media no longer do. They helped to inform our electoral process. Only dirty Democrats could see this as an act of war.

4. JOKE OF THE WEEK

A Jesuit and a Franciscan are walking down the street one day when a man approaches them. He asks, " Brothers, have you seen my Mercedes? It has rosary beads hanging from the rear view mirror."

The brothers look at each other.

The Franciscan asks, "What's a Mercedes?"

The Jesuit looks at the Franciscan, slightly horrified and asks, "What's a rosary?"

5. QUOTABLE QUOTES

Liberals imagine that law-abiding citizens do not have any idea how to use a gun responsibly — and that criminals will start following rules.
THOMAS SOWELL

It is difficult to practice obedience, but it is even more difficult to practice leadership.
ST. GREGORY OF NAZIANZUS

The first end I propose in our daily work is to do the will of God; secondly, to do it in the manner He wills it; and thirdly, to do it because it is His will.
ST. ELIZABETH ANN SETON

6. ODDS AND ENDS

--Hillary Clinton running for mayor of New York City only proves that evil never dies and would be the ruination of that great city.

--Chicago is already ruined.

--Apple should go ahead and fire Tim Cook. The reason? AirPods.

--Joe Biden tells Trump to grow up and stop using Twitter. Nevermind that every other world leader including Biden has a Twitter account. Trump actually writes his own tweets which is more grown up than letting a staffer do it for you.

--Colleges and universities today are little more than giant sponges for federal student loan dollars.

--Verizon would be foolish to buy Yahoo.

--Good riddance to Megyn Kelly. I predict her ratings will be lackluster, and she will vanish into obscurity after her programs are cancelled. Fox News just got better.

--Senate Republicans should abolish the filibuster rule they never use for themselves. Even when Republicans win, they lose.

--Defund Planned Parenthood NOW.

--All crimes are hate crimes. But if you insist on prosecuting hate crimes, hating white people for being white should certainly count.

--I reject the Benedict Option. You stay. You fight. The Ben Op is merely a Plan B after they put you out. But you don't retreat until then.

--I hate when musicians talk during a concert. Shut up and perform.

7. LINKS OF INTEREST

1.02.2017

SOC 11


Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.
SUN TZU

It is a new year, and these are my thoughts for the new year. I have many of them, and I dump them in these SOC posts to get them out of my head. For those new readers of the C-blog, SOC stands for "stream of consciousness." I just let the thoughts flow as they come into my brain down through to my fingers and into the keyboard.

Do I have any resolutions for the new year? The only thing I really want to change is my work ethic. I work a lot now, but I don't do all that I can do and should be doing. Like God, I believe in resting one day out of seven. What gets forgotten is working the other six days. That's where my resolution comes into play. I don't work a solid six day week. I will see about upping my productive activity.

Another resolution deals with prayer. I don't pray as I should. I put great faith in prayer now where I did not before. Prayer works. Prayer changes you. It changes other people. It changes the world. Time spent with God is well spent.

As for other resolutions, I can certainly exercise more, but that is such a cliche now that I never mention it as a resolution anymore. I made a resolution to never join a gym, and I have kept that one ever since I made it. I believe you should start at home with calisthenics and body weight exercises and long walks outside. Those are free, and you don't have to cancel anything when you fail to keep your resolution.

Exercise is a tough one because it is a mindless activity. This is why you see people with headphones on their skulls when they are working out or jogging down the street. People tell you to get your butt off the couch, but it isn't the couch but the television and the internet that keeps people glued to that particular piece of furniture.

What does keep changing is my mind on things. One of the things I have noticed lately is that I am happier on the job. I was wondering what changed to make that happen, and I link it to my abandonment of distributism. When you spend everyday thinking in terms of wage slavery instead of entrepreneurship, it will depress you. When you think the opposite, work is not so bad. You are exchanging value for value.

I remain a firm believer in homesteading. The irony is that many of a libertarian/alt right outlook on things are also into homesteading. Of course, this also goes under other names like "prepping" and "survival." But it is homesteading all the same.

The people who preach the loudest on distributism are mostly not homesteaders. In fact, they strike me as a lazy lot averse to manual labor and the dirt of farm life. I am not so upset on this since they can live their lives the way they wish. But distributists want to dictate to others how they will live and earn their livings. Now, if the preachers of this economic gospel can't do it themselves, I doubt the hoi polloi can do the same.

When Hilaire Belloc claimed that Catholicism was a complete worldview, he erred. I think the Roman Catholic Church has the final word on matters of faith and morals. Beyond that, it shows itself deficient. I have Pope Francis to thank for that insight as he pontificates on manmade global warming, politics, economics, and other topics where he shows utter ignorance. As for faith and morals, it seems he has dropped the ball on that one as well with Amoris Laetitia and communion for adulterers. But the story on that is still playing out.


My worldview is Catholic on faith and morals, conservative on politics, and libertarian on economics. This has been an evolution for me, but I feel comfortable with this outlook on things. I have found the arguments of the Acton Institute convincing. Nothing has produced more prosperity in the world like free market capitalism. The problem with pure libertarianism is that it divorces economics from Christian values and common sense. Anarchy and deregulation are not the same thing. It makes sense to let Uber drivers earn a living. It is another thing to let robbers earn their living.

Distributists are clueless on economics. And when they move beyond bold proclamations to actual implementation, their plans and strategies are indistinguishable from socialism. Basically, distributism is socialism decentralized. The problem is that it demands a central authority to pull off this trick. As for free market capitalism, it allows the freedom for distributists to pursue their dreams of a homestead, homeschooling, family life, and the rest. Unfortunately, the freedom to do these things is slim thanks to left wing socialists and big government types. If you doubt this, try to build your own home with your own two hands and watch the local government come and shut you down. And if you succeed, they will either zone you or tax you out of existence.

These insights are something I encountered in my research on starting a homestead, building your own home, or homeschooling your children. Virtually all of the obstacles to these things come from government. And when it comes to just buying a piece of land, that has been destroyed courtesy of central banking and paper money. All of those things the Austrian economists and Ron Paul talked about have turned out to be correct.

I am a born again free market capitalist. I say "born again" because I am merely returning to thoughts and opinions that I held previously. Of course, our current system of crony capitalism is not the same thing as free market capitalism. The Austrians like Peter Schiff have been at pains to explain this. It should be obvious that our system works for the benefits of a moneyed elite to the detriment of the wider economy. Central banking is the number one culprit in this regard.


Ronald Reagan combined conservative politics with libertarian economics. Of course, what he preached and what he practiced obviously differed. But he preached the right things. His conservatism tempered his libertarian side and vice versa.

I do think distributists have important insights to offer. I will still read and consider what they have to say. But I don't see free market capitalism as incompatible with the Christian religion and the Magisterium. Much of what the distributists have to say deal not so much with economics as they do with values. Capitalism produces prosperity, but the ends of that prosperity are in dispute. For many libertarians, this prosperity serves hedonism. For distributists, prosperity should serve leisure. The result is hard working libertarians who smoke dope and lazy distributists smoking pipes talking about how idyllic life would be in the shire if they could ever get off their behinds and make it. Between these two extremes is the conservative who works hard but turns that prosperity to greater service instead of indulgence. Freedom is meant to do good not sit on your ass and smoke your substance of choice.

My thoughts turn now to the foreign policy arena. I tend to go with the paleoconservative viewpoints of Pat Buchanan and Ron Paul. I think we should stay out of the internal affairs of other countries. I think this country's misadventures in Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Syria have been a disaster. I think the policy of free trade with all and entangling alliances with none is a good policy. Then, there is Israel.

Last year, I was in a Jewish deli when I overheard a woman talking to her son. The woman remarked to her son that the food was just like the stuff you could get in Israel. The son asked, "Is the food better in Israel?" The woman replied, "Everything is better in Israel."

Is everything better in Israel? You have to admit that it is a rough neighborhood that Israelis find themselves in. Yet, they aren't going anywhere. Israel is the Jewish homeland. I believe the promises God made to those people are still valid. The fact that they have been preserved as a people for thousands of years through conquest, dispersion, and a genocidal Holocaust is evidence of God's faithfulness. Israel may look like a country jammed into a war zone, but it is awesome compared to the alternatives Jews have endured for millennia.

I am on the side of Israel. Part of this is religious. The other part is the reality that Muslims are never our friends. Muslims hate Jews and Christians. They may play nice for the strategic present, but their long term aim is conquest and submission of the globe to Allah. Islam has replaced communism as the great threat to Western democracy. And Israel is the only true democracy in the Middle East.

Paleoconservatives resent all of the foreign aid the USA sends to Israel. What they forget is that this aid was sent to help fight the USSR. Israel was on our side in the Cold War. Ironically, the Muslim countries were also on our side except for Iran. Now, should we be on Israel's side? Should we return the favor? Should we be Israel's ally?

I think the answer is yes. Granted, this puts me on the same ground as the neocons. But I don't believe in Empire America. The problem here is that we have lost sight of what we are fighting for. I don't know of any paleoconservatives who thought we shouldn't have fought the Nazis or the communists. And these fights involved alliances. It really was good vs. evil.

My guiding ethos is Christian Just War Theory. This is something Ron Paul praised. We should be neither pacifists nor aggressors. Peace is the goal not empire. To that end, Israel is a nation not intent on empire but simple existence. They are surrounded by aggressors. Israel is justified in defending herself. And we should have no problem helping in that defense anymore than we had problems defending England and liberating France in WWII.

If you accept the Christian Just War Doctrine, you will be neither an isolationist nor an imperialist. You seek peace always, but you will use force to achieve this peace when it is necessary. The Obama policy of destabilization and revolution has been antipeace.  As such, this administration has been a disgrace and a failure.

Israel wants peace. I sincerely believe that. The Palestinians do not want peace. They never have. Israel is a stick in the eye of the Arab world. Muslims want Jews exterminated. After that, Christians are next on the list. There can never be a real peace with such people.