Cardinal Lamberto: Look at this stone, it has been lying in the water for a very long time, but the water has not penetrated it. [Breaks it open] Look, perfectly dry. The same thing has happened to men in Europe. For centuries they have been surrounded by Christianity, but Christ has not penetrated. Christ doesn’t live within them.

The Godfather Part 3 1990

In a few years the anniversary of the Protestant Reformation is coming up, while thousands of Protestant denominations will doubtless celebrate this event and I can’t help but suspect that if Martin Luther knew the result of his break with Rome he would have never done it.

Nary a month seems to pass when passes when we hear of one protestant congregation voting to redefine sin or change doctrine for the sake of getting people back in the pews or getting in touch with the times or whatever such excuse we hear causing schism within schism (it is no coincidence that many people seeing these changes have found their way back to Rome).

While doctrinally the Catholic Church has not gone that way there are plenty in it who would like to see that route taken, particularly in academia and media. This has been the cause of a lot of trouble in the church over the past 50 years. But more importantly than trouble for the church has been what is the risk it has meant for the faithful.

A great example is the doctrine of Hell.

Hoaxes not withstanding this Pope has preached on Hell an awful lot.

However many priests tend to dodge the subject, the media downplays or mocks it plenty of priests tend to duck an issue that generates snickers from our secular world. To this I give a quote from Fr. Marcel Nault who died in 1997 a priest who constantly preached on Hell:

One cannot specialize and preach everything, but the Lord Jesus invited me to preach on Hell. A monsignor said to me, “Marcel, don’t preach on Hell. People don’t like that, you scare them.” And in a very friendly way that Monsignor said to me, “Marcel, I have never preached on Hell and look at the position I have. I will never preach on Hell.”

After a long silence, I looked him in the eye and said, “Monsignor, you are on the road to Hell for all eternity. You preach, Monsignor, to please the crowd, instead of preaching to please Christ.”

Let me remind all that the primary purpose of any priest pastor or minister of any type is to keep people from damnation. That’s the goal and the bottom line and you don’t achieve this avoiding painful truths.

Let me put it another way, yesterday I went for a Colonoscopy, it is a very effective way to check for early signs of Colorectal cancer. Any polyp found and removed is screened for cancer. My radio co-host had cancer discovered in one such screening because it was caught early he was able to receive treatment and has been cancer free for years since.

This is my second such exam and let me tell you the prep work is VERY unpleasant, worse that the exam itself but it can save your life

Now imagine if I decided that because the exam prep was unpleasant I decided not to do it. Or picture if the doctor after finding a polyp decided not to test it or if he found cancer decided not to tell me about it because it would scare me?

The former would be an act of stupidity on my part or an act of malpractice on his.

Whenever a Christian pastor of any denomination entrusted with a flock decides that he is going to preach the popular rather than the truth, who decides that doctrine doesn’t mean a thing, who sacrifices the sacraments and the truth for the sake of popular opinion they are committing malpractice only the price of the settlement is a lot higher than any premium an insurance company will charge.

And in the end that has been the fruit of the Reformation.   Little by little it walked away or abandoned unpleasant or unpopular truths  and since any person could reinterpret scripture or a congregation could decide what was true by a vote it slowly wore faith away.

When it came into being Christianity was the religion of Europe and thanks to the efforts of the Catholic Church it was ready to spread into the new world. It has taken Christianity 1500 years to reach that point.

It only took the reformation 500 years turn Europe into a place where Christianity is so diluted and divided that within a generation or two Islam will take from indifference what it could not take by the sword.

What a shame.

By A.P. Dillon

North Carolina’s Attorney General, Roy Cooper, is taking a page out of the Obama administration’s book in defending the state’s Constitution. Cooper has made a statement that he will no longer be defending North Carolina’s Constitutional Amendment 1 on marriage.

The Amendment 1 ballot measure was born from 3 bills, but  SB 514  came out of the fray and went forward. Amendment 1 was passed by over 61% of the vote on the 2012 ballot. Cooper commented he made this decision after a decision by the 4th Circuit that a similar law in Virginia violates the 14th amendment. I guess the 10th amendment didn’t carry as much weight. The 4th Circuit also covers North Carolina.

RICHMOND — A federal appeals court panel today struck down Virginia’s ban on same-sex marriage.

In a 2-1 decision, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judges upheld U.S. Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen’s ruling in February that the 2006 amendment to the state Constitution defining marriage as between a man and a woman violates the equal protection clause under the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
– Winston Salem Journal

Cooper may be right, it may be in inevitability that North Carolina’s Constitutional amendment may be overturned, however that doesn’t excuse him from doing his job.

This is not the first time Roy Cooper has failed to defend North Carolina. The Governor had to hire an independent counsel on Voter ID. It’s important to note here that North Carolina’s Attorney General Cooper isn’t really interested in doing his job. He’s more interested in doing Governor Pat McCrory’s job.

Thirty one states have similar bans with only three overturned to date including Virginia’s.  Utah looks to be letting their Supreme court decide. A district court Judge in Louisiana is taking matters into his own hands not only on same-sex marriage in the state but whether or not Louisiana will recognize such marriages from other states. The same type of maneuvering is going on in Florida where 62% of voters approved that marriage was between one man and one woman.

The question becomes if it is not the decision of the states and voters in those states to determine their definition of marriage, then whose is it?

The North Carolina Constitution under section 6 reads as follows:

Marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State.  This section does not prohibit a private party from entering into contracts with another private party; nor does this section prohibit courts from adjudicating the rights of private parties pursuant to such contracts.
– North Carolina General Assembly, State Constitution

It’s worth noting that even before Amendment 1 was put into the North Carolina state Constitution, same-sex marriage was not recognized. Neither was Common Law marriage. They’re still not by statute in North Carolina. The North Carolina Statute §51‑1.2  (which still exists) states that “marriages, whether created by common law, contracted, or performed outside of North Carolina, between individuals of the same gender are not valid in North Carolina.”

If you enjoyed this article, you should really check out other pieces written by Da Tech Guy’s Magnificent Seven writers and maybe hit that tip jar!

AP DillonA.P. Dillon (Lady Liberty 1885), is a Conservative minded wife and mother living in the Triangle area of North Carolina. A.P. Dillon founded the blog LadyLiberty1885.com in 2009. After the 2012 election, she added an Instapundit style blog called The ConMom Blog. Mrs. Dillon’s writing, in addition to Da Tech Guy’s Magnificent 7, can also be found at StopCommonCoreNC.org, WatchdogWireNC and WizBang.  A.P. Dillon was also a panelist for Glenn Beck’s We Will Not Conform. Non-political writing projects include science fiction novellas that are, as of yet, unpublished. Her current writing project is a children’s book series.

The title of this post might confuse some non-Catholics (and perhaps some catholics as well.  It is not widely known that the Catholic Church considers the prophets and patriarchs of the old testament Saints of the church.

This is actually a most logical conclusion.  The definition a Saint is merely a person who has attained heaven.  My mother for example may have attained sainthood but the church has no definite sign of this and until a formal cause is opened for her and miracles attributed to her the one Holy Catholic Church will not recognize St. Mary of Fitchburg  as a canonized saint.

However this problem does not apply to Moses and the prophets.  Therefore it is not odd that at my church St. Anthony of Padua will see stained glass windows of Abraham, David, Isaiah and this one depicting Moses:

moses

and given Moses status as the deliver of Israel if you are a Christian who wants to pray for Israel, who better to invoke that the person who by following the instructions of God delivered his people from the yoke of slavery and brought them to the land that they are now defending?

I would suggest something like this:

 

St. Moses who through your obedience to the word of God delivered his people Israel to the land promised them and who with Elijah appeared with the Transfigured Christ before Peter James & John , we humbly ask your prayers for the progeny of those same people who you once led through the wilderness.

Through your powerful intercession may the Holy Spirit give their leaders the wisdom to steer them, as you did, safely through danger and withstand the wrath of those who daily seek their destruction.  Be their shield not only in the promised land but in all nations where they are threatened so that as God promised their number shall be like the sands of the beach and the Lord our God shall be glorified through them.

We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord 

Amen.

I think this would be a fine prayer for any Christian to say daily.

..then maybe someone beyond the Anchoress would be writing about and caring about it:

To be ripped from our neighborhood, the ancient land we have shared, so companionably for so long, is a tragedy that must transform each of us. I have been forever changed by the experience of being marched away at gunpoint, empty-handed, my past wrested from me. They gave me two choices, leave or die. And you, too, are changed for having to quietly watch me go, or die yourselves. It is not how old neighbors should part.

Why do they do this? Because they can. Because the “great men” and peace-prize-winning princes of the age will not stop them.

The persecution of Christians worldwide and by ISIS in particular is a non-story as far as the media is concerned, without Israel to blame it’s just not newsworthy.

Then again if blaming Israel is the way to get attention I guess Iran is doing their best to bring this to the forefront:

Iran’s Islamic Coalition Party secretary general has said ISIS (so-called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) is a proxy for US and Israel to destroy resistance in the region.

Given journalists willingness to buy the Hamas line maybe they’ll by the Iran one too. Then again Iran doesn’t have journalists in a hostage situation do they?

by Fausta Rodriguez Wertz

Hugo Carvajal a.k.a. “el Pollo” (the Chicken) is one of the guys who took part in Hugo Chávez’s unsuccessful 1992 military coup, later rising to the rank of general and chief of military intelligence, but with a sideline of drug trade: Here’s the indictment in the U.S. District Court accusing Carvajal of coordinating the transport of 5,600 kilos (6.17 tons) of cocaine from Venezuela to Mexico.

Carvajal, according to the computers belonging to Raul Reyes, the FARC’s #2 man, that were captured by Colombian security forces in 2008, was one of Hugo Chávez government’s key liaisons to the FARC (the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, the murderous narcoguerrilla group).

Now, don’t ask me how a guy nicknamed el Pollo gets to be a general, in charge of military intelligence from 2004-2011, or, for that matter, Venezuelan Consul to Aruba, but current president Nicolas Maduro named him Consul to Aruba all the same, knowing that the U.S. Treasury Dept, the DEA and a U.S. District Court (mentioned above) had indicted Carvajal last year. Last week Carvajal presented himself in Aruba, where he was detained since the Dutch knew of the indictments.

Venezuelan journalist Patricia Poleo was very pleased. She has been following the Carvajal story for a decade and alleges that Carvajal is not only a drug kingpin, but also a torturer. Spanish journalist Emili Blasco reports that Carvajal allegedly “was in charge of procuring the drugs from the FARC and controlled the distribution process in the U.S. and Europe, along with laundering the drug money through PDVSA,” the government-owned oil company. Carvajal also is under investigation for his role on the attacks to the Colombian consulate and the Jewish center in Caracas.

According to reports, Carvajal was flown to Aruba by man from Texas named Roberto Rincón in a private plane leased by PDVSA president Rafael Ramírez.

The general came to Aruba in a plane that belongs to an associate of Rafael Ramírez, president of the oil company. Besides, they point to the extraordinary information Carvajal can provide regarding the relationship of Chávez’s Venezuela with Hezbollah and Iran. “It’s like Pablo Escobar and Vladimiro Montesinos rolled into one, an intelligence chief who is also a druglord,” claim the sources.

Getting Carvajal is a very big deal indeed.

Well, lo and behold, the chicken flew the coop on Sunday, when he was released by Aruban authorities, after Holland decided he did qualify for diplomatic immunity but declared him person non-grata. Immediately, Carvajal flew to Caracas, where he received a hero’s greeting by Maduro at a PSUV (Venezuelan Socialist Party) event.

One of my sources also mentions that the Obama administration had 30 days to hand over its Extradition Request to Aruba but failed to. It reminds me of drug kingpin Walid Makled, who was released to Venezuela by president Santos of Colombia after the U.S. dragged its feet.

I did a roundup of questions from Venezuelan bloggers regarding this sudden release.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Venezuela pressured Aruba by threatening to withdraw from a contract to manage Curaçao’s refinery, which would have put at risk some 8,000 jobs, and Aruba’s chief prosecutor asserts that

the Netherlands’ release of a former top Venezuelan official wanted by the U.S. for alleged drug trafficking came after Venezuela raised economic and military pressure

as Venezuelan navy ships neared Aruba and Curaçao over the weekend.

Holland is a member of NATO and as such Aruba would be protected, as WSJ commenter Donald Hutchinson points out, but, in the Obama administration’s era of “smart diplomacy”, the Dutch couldn’t count on that:

Assuming that US intelligence was not asleep, all,it would take would be a fly over by US Navy jets and a notification that any offensive action would be met by the immediate destruction of their ships. Holland is a member of NATO and such actioned would clearly be sanctioned,
It would also be a devastating set back to the former bus driver running Venezuela for bringing shame to their military.
But what one might expect from a timid White House and a preoccupied State Department?

In addition to good’ol military thuggery, Miguel Octavio asserts that the Netherlands caved in (emphasis added):

Clearly, everyone applied pressure, but the weak link did not turn out to be Aruba as I suggested on my first post, but rather The Netherlands, as reportedly even Russia played a role, exchanging concessions on the Ucraine [sic, i.e., regarding the investigation on Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 that was shot over Ukraine] plane for helping release Carvajal. No matter what anyone says or how this is interpreted, it was a severe blow to the US, who would have loved to get Carvajal onshore.

In reaction to the release, Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tenn.), ranking member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has lifted his hold on a bill that would impose asset and visa freezes on Venezuelan officials who perpetrated human rights abuses against protesters in recent months.

The U.S. State Department spokeswoman’s reaction to the Netherlands deciding that Carvajal qualified for diplomatic immunity and shipping him off to Venezuela after declaring him person non-grata? “This is not the way law enforcement matters should be handled.”

At least she didn’t #hashtag it.

fausta
Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics and culture at Fausta’s blog.

My apologies that I’m a tad lat to this but I can’t let July end without reminding everyone that Stacy McCain’s loyal morning fellow Kevin “Wombat” Trainor has entered the realm of authors with The Last Falangist:  Essays on Culture and Politics in America

Smithy has done a review and his piece on parenthood and Divorce is worth reprinting here 

The whole point of having a mother and a father working together is so that you have backup when one of you drops the ball; the other one is there to quickly scoop up the errant pigskin or maybe make the catch and run it in. Unfortunately, divorce screws up that neat metaphor, because all of a sudden Mom and Dad aren’t really on the same team any more. . . .
When you and the Mrs. are constantly fighting over every little thing, when a lot of her energy is going toward building up the new boyfriend and tearing you down for not being a passive, enabling doormat, it becomes damn near impossible. Because the kids know what’s going on. They may not understand it, but they know.

That’s excellent cultural commentary and being a divorced man to some extent self accuracy but the real gem of this book is to see how the internet once was as with this tidbit.

How far back does The Last Falangist go, you ask? On Page 59, we find an entry from January 2005 that begins thus:

“I’ve been thinking about the long comment Allahpundit left on Michele’s old blog . . .”

Yes: In 2005, there was no HotAir.com and Allahpundit was just another dude hanging out in the blogosphere.

Yup if I had started my blog just 3 years earlier….

Anyway you can pick up his book here.  I suggest you do so.

by J. Niewicki

It is evident to anyone observing the events over the past six years that Obama, although un-American in his actions and advocacy, is not stupid.  Though many of those who oppose Obama know this, they still do not consider the real reasons for his actions and react with very little consideration to the real reasons Obama does what he does.

Consider the recent events surrounding illegal immigration into the United States.  Why would Obama allow such at thing to happen?  What benefit does he get from such an event?

More money?  No, most are children.

To improve the chances the next president will be a Democrat?  Not likely, according to a recent poll released by Gallop and cited by Politico.com, only 22% of Americans favor increased immigration, 33% would like it to remain as it is, and 41% believe it should be decreased (4% had no opinion).

So why would Obama allow these events to occur?

It is the opinion of this article’s author that President Obama’s motive is to create dissonance between the racial groups in America.  From this frame of reference, the motives surrounding the recent actions of Obama are clear.

Consider the facts:

  1. The messaging being perpetuated by the media and all other actors regarding these events are about the thousands of children immigrating into America.  Not adults, not families, children.
  2. Not only children, but children of a demographic which when criticized fall directly into the narrative that America is a racist nation.
  3. Obama clearly sees the world through the prism of race.  When a police officer was doing his duty in Cambridge Massachusetts, Obama’s initial reaction without knowing much about the circumstances was to defile the officer and tie the event to racism.  When later it was found that the officer was an expert on preventing racial profiling and even taught at the police academy about the harm such actions could cause, Obama rightfully and to his credit changed his tune.  Yet as in insight into the roots of this thinking, this event show clear insights.

Obama, by allowing what can only be described as a miniscule number of children into the country in comparison to the total number of people here today, accomplishes a number of goals by allowing this to happen.

First, he is able to prop up an event that he knows is a hot button issue to American conservatives.  Second, he is able to frame that issue in relation to children and minorities.  Third, he is able to point to the over reaction of conservatives in America and validate the myth that they are both racist and (this is the cherry on top that makes this move genius by Obama) – hate children.

So what do conservatives in America do to respond to this?

Shortsightedly:

  • Hold rallies where Obama operatives can hold up signs of racism and hate.
  • Take precious resources from fighting Obamacare so that fewer people notice the ACA does not make health care more affordable or more available to people.
  • Remove the focus from the IRS scandals and NSA encroachment into the lives of everyday Americans.

Therefore, conservatives, please stop being so stupid.

Obama is winning because the conservative movement takes his bait every time.  Immigration is not the issue, it is the welfare state.  If the principle that people have a right to the unearned was not perpetuated by both the conservative and leftist groups in America; if we returned to the principles our country was founded in which liberty and individual rights were our highest values, we would welcome all immigrants into our country.

When this was the reality in America, the only people who would make the effort to come to our country were those who could produce and contribute to our overall success.

Why would we not want these people here?

Unless we laboriously outthink our opponents, we will lose.  The American experiment is dying because the recognition of its foundation is all but lost in the public discourse.  We must reaffirm and speak publically of the right of every individual to pursue his or her own life as they see fit; to pursue their life, their liberty, their pursuit of happiness; not the lives, liberty, and happiness of others.   Only then will we stunt the continuing progress of Obama’s agenda.

If conservatives want these types of actions by Obama to stop, they must start looking more closely at why Obama does what he does, and recognize his long term goals; some of which this author believes are focused on dividing the United States of America.

by baldilocks

At Storify, Brian Cates gets heated up about the new movie in the works which purports to tell the story of eyeny1RatherGate. Allegedly, the movie will portray former CBS anchor Dan Rather as a truth -teller with respect to his 2004 report on the Texas Air National Guard service of Former President George W. Bush.

I feel Mr. Cates’ pain, as I blogged quite a bit about the attempt to denigrate GWB’s service. And, though I was, at best, a minor player in the exposure of the elaborate fraud which Rather and company attempted put over on the American people, I’d like to think that I helped–if only to point the big boys and girls in the right direction.

Why did it mean so much to me? Not just because I voted for George Bush in 2000 and intended to vote for him in 2004–which I did. But because I had served in the USAF and the USAFR and, to anyone familiar with either–especially the USAFR–it was blindingly obvious that the document used to support the allegation that GWB had gone AWOL (sic) from his TANG position was a bogus one. And I’m not even talking about the typeface.

But instead of re-telling the reasons not related to the infamous memo, allow me to quote myself.

Why am I not surprised to find out that the “mainstream media” cannot manage to dig up one of their number who is/was a Guardsman/Reservist? […]

Interpretation [of GWB’s TANG attendance records from October 1972 to July 1973]? What is there to interpret? The document shown isn’t some obscure scroll written in a long dead language, found during an archeological dig at the foot of the Himilayas. It’s an objective document showing the amount of attendance points that President Bush earned during the last part of his ANG stint–the part that a certain segment of the population just can’t get out of their minds.

You have to actually be there for something other than a goose egg to be listed under “points.”

Yes, the fraud was fraudulent. But…

He’s right, you know. And it’s up to those of us who incredulously watched what happened to remember–and to tell those who weren’t paying attention at the time. After all, that last is how we got to place we are now; inattention.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

 

I know many blog posts wonder what are we leaving behind to our kids and theirs. I hear it on talk shows too numerous to list. It is asked so often it is almost meaningless at this point. We all know where that conversation goes…debt…unsustainable and then directly into bickering.

I will avoid that.

What we are leaving behind, what my kids see on television is far cry from what I saw as a kid. Now what we have is “presumptive nominees,” we have “dynasties,” we have partisan bickering everywhere dominated by the extremes of both parties.

What we don’t have are a lot of leaders. Oh sure we have people in leadership roles but we don’t have are many leaders.

We have had them in the past, and there are some on the periphery but none that dominate the day.

Why bring this up?

Well, news cycles being what they are we are already hearing about the 2016 Presidential election. We hear that on the one side we have former Senator, Secretary of State and First Lady of the United States Hillary Clinton, or perhaps Senator Elizabeth Warren. On the other side we have people like Governor Chris Christie, we have Senator Rand Paul, and a field of others.

What I don’t see on either side is someone that people want to vote for. I see a large number of people whose names are being bandied about for the most important elected office in this country (perhaps the world) and none of them excite me, none of them are problem solvers. They are good at getting elected, but they aren’t good at solving huge problems from what I can tell.

We need a leader, we need a problem solver. We do not need more of the same.

When I was a kid we had Ronald Reagan, when I was in my late teens there was a phenomenon known as Ross Perot (who would have been elected before he pulled out then re-entered the race). Interestingly I heard a comment from Mr. Perot years after his run for office. He said, and this is a quote, “No one smart enough to do that job wants that job.” Certainly an interesting quote but not what we need right now.

The country has problems. This country needs solutions.

This is one of the times I agree with First Lady Obama. We need to have a change in last names. We need to not have people from the same two or three families in that office. It hasn’t helped.

We need someone who gets Americans excited. We need someone who has solved problems and run things. We need someone who can unite people. In short we need someone who tells the extremes of both parties to be quiet when it is needed. We need someone who can roll up their sleeves, get to work, and fix what ails us.

We need a southern border solution, not a band aid.

We need an economy that is functional, not a temporary stimulus.

We need an international policy that doesn’t make us a joke, not whatever we have had for the last 15 years.

We need to go back to having a long term plan, not a series of temporary stop gap solutions.

We need a monetary policy that doesn’t create problems, not what is happening.

In short, what we need are strong leaders. We need people who are smart enough and want the job. Not someone who thinks it would be great to be President. I think being President would be terrible. It would be no fun what-so-ever. Would I do it? I’m really not sure (not that anyone asked me).

Why do I bring up Perot?

Well, I remember people of all ages being excited about him (for a while then he went a little nutty).

We deserve to have someone standup who isn’t a typical politician, who isn’t a “Donald Trump,” who can do the job.

In short, America, we deserve better. Before you start swarming to someone in 2016 that isn’t a problem solver and is merely good at telling you what you want to hear to get elected, take a moment and as yourself…Am I behind this person because I like them or because I dislike the opposition.

The Primary Elections matter. That is the time to get involved so we don’t continue to end up with the lesser of two evils.

Thanks for reading my rant, stand up America and demand better. Hold your elected leadership to account, don’t let them slide, ever.

J MostIf you are a Boston Celtics fan you remember Johnny Most the voice of the team for decades.

Most was a character, who knew the game of basketball, who loved Boston and the city and had one of the most distinctive voices you ever heard, perfect for a radio announcer.

He was always a NOTORIOUS homer.

No Celtic could do any wrong but any foul against a celtic player was a “vicious shot”

As I’ve watched the media over the last six years deal with first Candidate and then President Barack Obama it seems I’m seeing the very same thing, minus the distinctive voice.

CNN polls for elections that will never take place again not withstanding the media has done all it can to defend this president, blaming Bush for as long as they could and when that was no longer tenable, declaring that the presidency has gotten too big for any one man.

So if you have a person who can’t grasp the idea of how much this media protects President Obama, sit them town and introduce them to the historic voice of the Celtics and see if they find anything familiar in the press’ coverage of the President who like Johnny Most who defended the Celtics to the bitter end, they have done the same.

No matter what the cost.