There are two new votes for my economic plan A today. One (via glenn) is from Philip Greenspun’s blog:

What did these guys want the government to do? Nothing, basically. “Back in the 19th Century, there were a lot of steep crashes, guys got wiped out, and the economy came back quickly.” What’s different now? The government is a lot bigger and more powerful. Rich companies and people can put some of their wealth into lobbying and demand that the government prevent them from getting wiped out (or at least slow the process).

Barack Obama promised on Monday not to rest as long as this economic downturn persisted. He promised to act decisively, change whatever had to be changed, spend whatever had to be spent. This is precisely what worries the investors to whom I spoke. They’d rather see the audacity of doing nothing.

The second comes from the news itself:

Sales at U.S. retailers unexpectedly halted a record six-month slide in January, an advance that may not be sustained as job losses climb.

The 1 percent increase followed a 3 percent drop the prior month, the Commerce Department said today in Washington. Excluding cars, the gain was 0.9 percent. Last month’s rise reflected higher gasoline prices and more spending on items including clothing and food.

Perhaps our democratic friends don’t want to risk a recovery that they can’t take credit for. If they can postpone it for say 18 months it might look really pretty come election time.

Even worse if it comes too fast then someone might think to Blame Bush for it!

Looks like Civil disobedience paid off for the Sheehan family even if it cost them 100k in fines:

Although Liam Sheahan’s 2002 decision to disregard planning laws and bulldoze 250 trees on his hilltop property hurt his family financially and emotionally, he believes it helped save them and their home on the weekend.

“The house is safe because we did all that,” he said as he pointed out his kitchen window to the clear ground where tall gum trees once cast a shadow on his house.

“We have got proof right here. We are the only house standing in a two-kilometre area.”

And those who obeyed the law? They had this reaction before their council:

“We’ve lost two people in my family because you dickheads won’t cut trees down,” he said.

“We wanted trees cut down on the side of the road … and you can’t even cut the grass for God’s sake.”

But hey whats a few dead Australians if we can feel good about our selves as environmentalists right? And our green friends have wasted no time in using the deadly fires to promote their global warming ponzi scheme.

The entire global warming business is just a modern version of buying indulgences without any benefits to an actual soul.

The American Papist reports that the timing of the disclosures on the Legionaries of Christ’s founder was not a coincidence:

My contacts assert that the convergence of these two big news events–the outrage prompted by the Bishop Willliamson affair, followed shortly afterwards by the new revelations regarding Father Maciel’s “double life” — was no accident: the order’s superiors and their ecclesial allies took advantage of the crisis surrounding Bishop Williamson to minimize the impact of the new disclosures regarding Maciel. The Mexican superiors, I’m told, believe the present tempest will blow over and the Legion will pull itself together and go on as before. (The Cathoholic – updated 3:30pm)

It certainly seems that amidst the hubbub surrounding the SSPX story, coverage of the Maciel scandal has been slim-to-none, except for the notable exceptions chronicled on these pages.

In terms of PR that is a normal move when trying to dilute damage. However if your goal is truth and pastoral healing dodging the issue is a bad idea.

Update: Damion Thomspon says this isn’t going away:

I wrote yesterday about Fr Maciel, a Mexican whom the Legionaries and their lay wing, Regnum Christi, had virtually canonised before he died. Big mistake: not only did he sexually abuse male seminarians, but we’ve just learned that he fathered a baby girl in his 80s.

Several Legionary priests are disgusted by the way their leaders defended Maciel – it seems like they must have known that he was living a double life. Meanwhile, many Regnum Christi members are behaving like shocked members of a cult, still saying prayers based around the mission and charism of their founder.

He points out why this isn’t pushed in the media:

This scandal is potentially bigger than the SSPX fiasco. The media have given it little attention – perhaps because it offers little opportunity for Pope-bashing: it was Benedict who sent the Legion’s sexually predatory founder, the late Fr Marcial Maciel, into exile in 2006.

He links to George Weigel who goes the whole hog:

None of these questions can be thoughtfully or prayerfully answered until there is a full audit.

And, as the flailings and failures of the past ten days have made clear, that audit cannot be conducted by the Legion leadership, which is likely beset by a maelstrom of internal and external pressures. It must be mandated by the pope, and it must be conducted by someone responsible to the pope alone—not responsible to the relevant parts of the Vatican bureaucracy, not responsible to the cardinal secretary of state, but responsible to the pope alone. There is simply no other way open to an accounting that will be both scrupulously honest and publicly credible.

To take an image from corporate law, the Legion of Christ must be immediately put into receivership: A personal delegate, appointed by the pope, must be empowered to take over the governance of the Legion of Christ and to conduct the moral and institutional audit required. The papal delegate would be instructed to report his findings, both interim and final, to the pope alone, and he would be instructed to make recommendations (again, to the pope alone) addressing the possible futures, including dissolution or dissolution-and-reconstitution, of the Legion.

I’m still getting fundraisers from them. My recycle bins will remain full until this stuff gets fixed, and honestly I instinctively don’t trust any religious group that promotes itself via sweepstakes.

I was listening to Fr. Corapi who stated in one of his talks about spiritual warfare that once you become a threat to Satan you become a target.

Judging from some of the comments at this YouTube video this young lady is a threat indeed.

Via Hotair: Much more positive commentary here, here, here, here and here.

If you want a message from an adult instead check this out via the raving atheist:

Update: Comments needed to be shut off on that youtube post:

We apologize for turning off the commenting functionality. This was not to stop genuine discussion or debate on the issue but was, rather, a response to the cowardly who used it as an opportunity to throw insults and threats at a young girl that they hated without reason. Thank-you to everyone who, whether in agreement or not, has responded in a respectful manner.

Must have been a lot of Huffington post commentators.

UPDATE: Welcome Don Suber readers. Take a peek around. Be amazed at the shock of Catholics being Catholic, See what a difference that $76 dollars will make, see how defying environmental rules can save your life see the president dance the little sidestep, and remember if you have need of remote tech support, I offer it here.

What is the difference between stimulus that won’t make a difference and stimulus that will save the economy? Apparently $76 bucks a year.

Via the Anchoress Michelle Obama July 11th 2008

“You’re getting $600. What can you do with that? Not to be ungrateful or anything. But maybe it pays down a bill, but it doesn’t pay down every bill every month..

Barack’s approach is that the short-term quick fix kinda stuff sounds good. And it may even feel good that first month when you get that check. And then you go out and you buy a pair of earrings.”

Apparently this is no longer the case:

Here is our 800 billion dollar stimulus mostly-spending bill we must see passed, and we must gratefully accept as the only possible solution to our “catastrophic” problems and our growing malaise. The ONLY solution.

This other one, over here, brought up by another Democrat? Ignored. Just ignored.

I just have one thing to ask:

What does Michelle Obama suggest we do – how we will stimulate the economy with our $13?

The $13 a week adds up to $676 a year. There are a lot of people who don’t think this will help, I don’t think it will hurt, but I think a lump sum would have a bigger economic effect.

It’s amazing what $76 dollars will do for an economy. Michelle Malkin notices this too and asks:

What sayeth Mrs. Obama now?

Apparently she was against this before she was for it.

Looks like Gert Wilders is going to make the British eject him:

“A newspaper reports that Dutch MP Wilders has been “taken away” from an airliner at Heathrow Airport, no immediate official confirmation.”

And that: A Dutch newspaper reporter describes a “chaotic” scene aboard an airliner at Heathrow airport as banned Dutch MP tries to enter country.

And here is the money quote of all money quotes:

Mr Wilders told The Times on the flight that the British Government was “the biggest bunch of cowards in Europe”. ”It is easy to invite people you agree with, it is more difficult to invite people you disagree with and this is the proof of the pudding,” he said.

“I am going to Great Britain because I was invited by another politician (Lord Pearson of Rannoch). I am a democrat, I am serving freedom of speech. They are not only being nasty to me they are being nasty to freedom of speech.

He added: “They (the British government) are more Chamberlain than Churchill.”

Me I’ve always said that the answer to speech you don’t like is more speech. England is making a huge mistake here. They are afraid of the fight, you’d better have that fight now while freedom of speech and expression is still strong enough to win it. If not then you will quietly sink into Dhimmitude.

Atlas Shrugs

Bye bye England — they are done. They should be kissing his ring for his bravery and courage in doing what they don’t have the spine to do.

Glenn Reynolds:

The lesson to me is that if you want freedom of speech, then, like the Muslims in Britain, you must make the authorities afraid to bother you. If you seem harmless, you will be silenced at the demand of those whom the authorities fear. Once again, I note that this is an incentive structure that the British authorities will likely come to regret.

A few days ago Charles Johnson declared a plague on both your houses:

Yes, it’s a disgrace. Geert Wilders has the same right to free speech as anyone else, and the government of Britain is demonstrating once again that they’ve completely lost their way in a maze of multicultural contradictions.

However, Wilders himself does not deserve to be called an icon of free speech, since he explicitly wants to ban the Koran and make Islam illegal in Europe; in other words, he wants to take away other people’s freedom of speech and freedom of religion, and that is simply wrong. Book banning is what totalitarians do, not believers in free speech.

Update: Bad link fixed.

Update II Diana West:

How can the UK call itself a “civilised society” when it has just proven beyond any doubt to the entire world that it cannot and will not and does not wish to ensure freedom of speech against the threat of Islamic violence?

Update III: Mark Steyn nails it:

As to the judgment of the British Home Office, they have no problem admitting to the United Kingdom the likes of Dr Ijaz Mian, who preached as follows at the Ahl-e-Hadith mosque in Derby:

You cannot accept the rule of the kaffir. We have to rule ourselves and we have to rule the others… King, Queen, House of Commons: if you accept it, you are a part of it. If you don’t accept it, you have to dismantle it. So you being a Muslim, you have to fix a target. From that White House to this Black House, we know we have to dismantle it. Muslims must grow in strength, then take over

Just the guy you want over for dinner.

Update IV: The Times of London echos Charles Johnson:

For all the obvious hollowness of Mr Wilders’ credentials as a defender of free speech, the cause is a good one. It is a common notion that the right to free speech must be held in balance with the requirement to avoid needless offence. That is a mistake. The right to oppose, mock, deride and even insult people’s beliefs is essential to a society where bad ideas are superseded by better ones. There is no right to have one’s emotional sensibilities protected, for it is no business of government to legislate for people’s feelings. Mr Wilders’ views are obnoxious, and (not but) his freedom to express them must be defended. It is regrettable that Mr Wilders faces not just ostracism but prosecution in the Netherlands because of his comments about Islam.

Sort of a reverse of love the sin hate the sinner.

Gates of Vienna translates this Jylliands posten editorial. Those guys know a few things about the dangers of appeasing Islam:

At the end, it is probably not about disagreeing with Wilders that has led to this. Actually, it is apparently based directly on fears that there will be riots in the streets if he shows up.

That is, the British government admits that it would rather break its good international character than risk violent reactions from people who argue with violence. It is a day of shame for Great Britain.

Gateway Pundit:

A blow to free speech. Geert Wilders was not allowed on the plane to England today.
Wilders produced this 10 minute film called “Fitna” that offended Muslims.

Because of this controversial film, England announced this week that Wilders would not be allowed into the country. Wilders was asked to show the film at the House of Lords by UK Independence Party peer Lord Pearson.

He embeds a youtube of the film as well.

I’m surprised it took two days for this stuff to hit the papers:

Students and faculty returned to campus after winter break to find that Boston College had quietly completed, without announcement or fanfare, an eight-year project to dramatically increase the presence of Roman Catholic religious symbols on campus. The additions are subtle but significant, as the university joins other Catholic institutions around the nation in visibly reclaiming its Catholic identity.

“The Christian art reflects our pride in and commitment to our religious heritage,” said Jack Dunn, BC’s spokesman.

Student reaction has been generally supportive, but among faculty, there is division over the appropriateness of the step. A meeting last month of arts and sciences department chairs turned into a heated argument over the classroom icons; a handful of faculty have written to the administration to protest, and some unsuccessfully circulated a petition asking to have crucifixes removed.

“I believe that the display of religious signs and symbols, such as the crucifix, in the classroom is contrary to the letter and spirt of open intellectual discourse that makes education worthwhile and distinguishes first-rate universities from mediocre and provincial ones,” Maxim D. Shrayer, chairman of the department of Slavic and Eastern languages and literatures, said in an interview.

Much to my surprise this Globe story was pretty balanced.

Inside higher ed give the anger a little more vent:

“A classroom is a place where I am supposed, as a teacher, to teach without any bias, to teach the truth. And when you put an icon or an emblem or a flag, it confuses the matter,” said Amir Hoveyda, the chemistry department chair.

“For 18 years, I taught at a university where I was allowed to teach in an environment where I felt comfortable. And all the sudden, without any discussion, without any warning, without any intellectual debate, literally during the middle of the night during a break, these icons appear,” Hoveyda said.

God knows how you can teach chemistry with a crucifix on the wall. I don’t know how Catholic high school teachers manage it.

Michael Graham has fun with it:

“In the name of tolerance, TEAR DOWN THIS CROSS!”

Watching all the Valentine commercials they have a single message:

Buy your woman X and she will have sex with you

Let me give my fellow guys a clue. If your lady isn’t willing or interested to give you sex a stuffed Bear, set of pajamas or a rock isn’t going to make her interested.

If you are going to pay for it, pay for it. Craig’s list is full capitalists people who will put out for money without cluttering the house. If you want to give your lady something do so because you love them.