Based on the mass protests, the despicable conduct during the confirmation hearings, and the shameful smear campaign waged against Judge Kavanaugh, it is safe to say progressives are outraged that President Trump has so far placed two Justices on the Supreme Court.  The framers of the Constitution and those who ratified it would be completely perplexed by this level of outrage.  They would be unable to grasp why the nomination of an individual to such a relatively insignificant office would cause so much angst to so many.  According to the Constitution it is a rather insignificant office.  Here is how Alexander Hamilton described the power of the Supreme Court in relation to the other two branches of the federal government in Federalist 78

Whoever attentively considers the different departments of power must perceive, that, in a government in which they are separated from each other, the judiciary, from the nature of its functions, will always be the least dangerous to the political rights of the Constitution; because it will be least in a capacity to annoy or injure them. The Executive not only dispenses the honors, but holds the sword of the community. The legislature not only commands the purse, but prescribes the rules by which the duties and rights of every citizen are to be regulated. The judiciary, on the contrary, has no influence over either the sword or the purse; no direction either of the strength or of the wealth of the society; and can take no active resolution whatever. It may truly be said to have neither FORCE nor WILL, but merely judgment; and must ultimately depend upon the aid of the executive arm even for the efficacy of its judgments.

The impact the Supreme Court has on our lives would have remained much further reduced if we had remained faithful to the Constitution because of the limited nature of the federal government created by our most fundamental document.  Here is how James Madison describes that limited nature of the federal government in relation to the State governments:

The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected.

The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State.

All of the social issues that preoccupy progressives and others on the political left so much were never meant to be brought to the federal government level.  The progression that lies at the heart of the progressive philosophy was about bringing those issues to the exclusive purview of the federal government, in direct violation of the actual text of the Constitution.  If the Constitution was still followed the only acceptable ruling by the Supreme Court involving social issues would be to return those cases back to the States.

The federal government is only granted the power to provide for the defense of the entire country, prevent the States from squabbling with each other, promote a sense of general well being for the entire country, and engage in diplomacy as a single country with other nations.  The entire list of powers granted to the federal government are enumerated in Article 1 Section 8 of the Constitution and in the powers granted to the executive branch in Article 2.  If federal legislature passes laws that delve into areas not covered by those enumerated lists of powers then the Supreme Court has the authority to declare them unconstitutional.  The Supreme Court was never granted the authority to overturn State laws.  It granted itself that power by distorting the 14th Amendment.  The federal government was never granted the power to regulate social issues involving those living in the states for several reasons.

Firstly, they believed the federal government would have to grow incredibly large if it was granted that much authority.  That was proved correct after the federal government ignored the Constitution.

Secondly, it was believed the federal government would abuse that much power and use it to violate the rights of individuals.   That was also proved correct.

It was believed the people living in the States would be able to restrain the much smaller State governments if they abused this power, while it would be impossible to restrain the federal government if it abused those powers.  This was proved correct on so many levels.

The United States is a large country, with a diverse population, composed of individuals with very different religious and moral beliefs.  Many have different beliefs on social issues than others.   The framers of the Constitution believed some individuals living in the States would chose to live there based on the social issues embraced by the individual State governments.  With each State embracing different social issues people could find a home in a State that matched their beliefs.  Now the federal government forces certain beliefs regarding social issues onto every individual.  That is tyranny.

Social issues generate powerful emotions in individuals.  It was believed that preventing these social issues from reaching the federal government level would result in a much more tranquil nation.

If the Supreme Court sent these contentious social issues back to the States where they belong while dealing with dull technical issues pertaining solely to the limited number of enumerated powers, would the confirmation of a Supreme Court Justice generate so much anger and hysteria?

I don’t believe there is a more apt label for our current political climate than calling it a circus.  There is no better example of this circus than the entire confirmation process for Judge Kavanaugh.  This circus began with the protests that erupted even before President Trump announced the name of his nominee, continued with the constant interruptions by the Democrats during the hearings, and climaxed with the not too surprising last second accusations of sexual misconduct.

None of this surprised me, and I’m sure not too many readers of this wonderful website were surprised either. We’ve seen it so many times before.  The entire fracas has a scripted feel to it because it was scripted.   The script was published back in 1971 by Saul Alinsky.  It was titled Rules for Radicals.  This book is more than a script for a large percentage of the political left; it is their playbook and bible.  Colleges and universities use it to indoctrinate their students.  The more radical liberal Democrat politicians, such as President Obama and Hillary Clinton, have embraced this book.

Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals has often been portrayed as being a positive work. Is it really? Check out this quote from the page Prologue xvm

Remember we are talking about revolution, not revelation; you can miss the target by shooting too high as well as too low. First, there are no rules for revolution any more than there are rules for love or rules for happiness, but there are rules for radicals who want to change their world; there are certain central concepts of action in human politics that operate regardless of the scene or the time. To know these is basic to a pragmatic attack on the system. These rules make the difference between being a realistic radical and being a rhetorical one who uses the tired old words and slogans

The revolution he was talking about is one where our founding principles and free market economy are replaced by a socialist system.  This quote from page Prologue xix outlines the beginning moves in this revolution.

Dostoevski said that taking a new step is what people fear most. Any revolutionary change must be preceded by a passive, affirmative, non-challenging attitude toward change among the mass of our people. They must feel so frustrated, so defeated, so lost, so futureless in the prevailing system that they are willing to let go of the past and chance the future. This acceptance is the reformation essential to any revolution.

The political process in Washington DC has broken down.  Many Democrat members of the United States Congress have deliberately attempted to bring this about because they’re following Rules for Radicals.

Doesn’t this next quote, from page Prologue xxii, describe the tactics the political left has used against the political right for a very long time?  Doesn’t this quote describe the shenanigans used by the Democrats during the confirmation hearings?  Isn’t all of the political chaos creating feelings of disillusionment and hopelessness among the people?

Men don’t like to step abruptly out of the security of familiar experience; they need a bridge to cross from their own experience to a new way. A revolutionary organizer must shake up the prevailing patterns of their lives — agitate, create disenchantment and discontent with the current values, to produce, if not a passion for change, at least a passive, affirmative, non-challenging climate.

A reformation means that masses of our people have reached the point of disillusionment with past ways and values. They don’t know what will work but they do know that the prevailing system is self-defeating, frustrating, and hopeless. They won’t act for change but won’t strongly oppose those who do. The time is then ripe for revolution.

Bad political behavior is not a phenomenon exclusive to the political left; however it is much more prevalent on that side of the spectrum.   Rules for Radicals is primarily responsible for that.  Most on the political left have been indoctrinated by that book, either by reading it themselves or by receiving the information second or third hand.  Those on the political right more often embrace the Ten Commandments and Judeo Christian teachings on morality.

This quote from the Chapter of Ends and Means is the justification for many on the political left to engage in tactics such as rioting after losing an election, blocking highways, harassing people at restaurants, storming meetings, silencing those they do not agree with, enrolling the dead to vote, and attempting to derail a Supreme Court confirmation by dropping unfounded sexual misconduct allegations.

Life and how you live it is the story of means and ends. The end\s what you want, and the means is how you get it. Whenever we think about social change, the question of means and ends arises. The man of action views the issue of means and ends in pragmatic and strategic terms. He has no other problem; he thinks only of his actual resources and the possibilities of various choices of action. He asks of ends only whether they are achievable and worth the cost; of means, only whether they will work. To say that corrupt means corrupt the ends is to believe in the immaculate conception of ends and principles. The real arena is corrupt and bloody. Life is a corrupting process from the time a child learns

The practical revolutionary will understand Goethe’s “conscience is the virtue of observers and not of agents of action”; in action, one does not always enjoy the luxury of a decision that is consistent both with one’s individual conscience and the good of mankind. The choice must always be for the latter. Action is for mass salvation and not for the individual’s personal salvation. He who sacrifices the mass good for his personal conscience has a peculiar conception of “personal salvation”; he doesn’t care enough for people to be “corrupted” for them.

The Chick-Fil-A van at the Johnny Appleseed Fair Leominster MA
Yesterday I spent my day off at the WQPH 89.3 FM Booth at Leominster’s annual Johnny Appleseed festival held each year in honor of the most famous person ever born there. I spent the day promoting my book Hail Mary the Perfect Protestant (and Catholic) Prayer (available here) , my radio show Your Prayer Intentions (Heard every Saturday at Noon on WQPH) , giving away blessed items and collecting stories.

I’ll be writing about some of those great stories over the next few days, some which have already been uploaded to Youtube if you can’t wait, but there is on story in particular that jumped out at me.

The festival ran from 9 AM to 6 PM I got there before 8 to set things up. The wind was pretty nasty early in the day so one of our volunteers Chris did a hardware store run for some Duct Tape and stakes to hold the tent and sign in place. When he got back before nine he came back with shocking news…Chick-Fil-A was set up right next to the main drag!

Now if you live south of the Mason-Dixon line the idea that your local Chick-Fil-A might be at a festival is not news. But if you live in a state where there was until a few years ago only a single Chick-Fil-A in the entire state, where both radical gay protesters, and far left pols, of which we have an abundance have used the company as a punching back to prove their liberal bona fides , and where even now the nearest of the five or so statewide locations is a solid 30 minutes away…

…having them set up at a festival in the city next to yours is a pretty big deal.

It was nearly 9 AM so by now our booth was well maned so I headed straight over not only to get the story but because I didn’t have time to eat before I left the house. That’s where I met Sandra and Kevin who were setting up.

Rather than selling individual sandwiches they were selling only meals which consisted of: A standard Chick-Fil-A Sandwich, a 10 ounce can of soda, a bag of chips and a thick cookie for $10. I thought the price-point was high for the festival but I bought one anyway (I’d never had the cookies there before, it was VERY good) and returned to my booth very happy.

As promised I swung by again at 4 pm to see how the day had gone so far, it had gone VERY well

It’s worth noting that the lady who asked about when they would come to Leominster was wearing buttons for various Democrats running for state office

By 5:30 the Kevin was packing up, the last meal had been sold and the last “when are you coming to Leominster?” question had been asked.

Now you might think it’s no big deal for Chick-Fil-A to sell a couple of hundred sandwiches at an annual festival in Leomisnter MA. But to do so when the company has been vilified for a decade in the state, in a city where their state rep is a Bernie Bro (actually a Bernie sis) at a price-point higher than anyone else at the place, that’s really something.

I suspect that before too long I won’t have to go more than 5 minutes out of my way to get a soup some Chick-Fil-A and if nothing else I’m Certain that they will be a fixture at the Johnny Appleseed Festival forevermore.

Yesterday I saw the news story about the Sesame Street writer who claimed that he wrote Bert and Ernie as Gay, Sesame Street’s response (which I was only half joking as being “no their not, please don’t stop buying our stuff”

Frank Oz, the creator of Bert and Ernie and Muppet master extraordinaire tweet in reply

I was going to leave it there, after all the idea that the institutional left using media to push their message is as television itself but I the convergence of a post at PJ media with an interesting tweet, a post by Stacy McCain on campus activism and a personal experience this week all gelled.

This week my primary co-worker in my day job began a leave to recover from the final operation of what is called “Transition”. The day before I made one last attempt to persuade this person that it’s a bad idea, that such a change is not necessary for said person’s self worth and their value as a person is not defined by such things.

In Massachusetts this is a risky thing to do if you want to keep a job but if you actually care about the well being of someone you will tell them uncomfortable truths even if everyone is going along with this nonsense.

It was to no avail but I further informed said person that regardless of the decision it would not change things between us. I’ve not heard of the results of said operation but I suspect by the time you read this post I’ll have some info.

What does this have to do with Sesame Street and PJ media? Well I was a bit surprised to read that Frank Oz’s tweet produced considerable pushback and anger.

The gay brigade is not taking Oz’s announcement on Twitter very well, but he’s right. People are more than straight or gay. They are funny or smart or evil or myopic. They have likes and dislikes that aren’t tied to what they do in bed and it’s getting extremely boring and insulting to continue to see people through narrow definitions of identity politics instead of seeing them for who they are. Gay is not who you are, it’s just what you like in bed and frankly, no one wants to hear about that. Tell us something interesting about yourself instead. What’s more interesting than what gives you an orgasm is what you think makes a good friend. And Ernie and Bert can answer that one better than anyone.

And the exclamation point is this tweet:

Ah but it turns out that indeed it is and Stacy McCain explains why in an unrelated piece on woke campus activism that we have apparently exported to Australia:

What you will discover, if you examine the types of people attracted to the student “activism” scene, is that most of them are abnormal — and deliberately so. These activists disdain normality as boring. They crave the distinction of being seen as different from their peers, whom they contemptuously regard as a herd of mindless conformists. And so they go shopping around for identities and causes, donning them like costumes, in an effort to display their imagined uniqueness.

Or put simply society has spent two generations telling children that they are special and giving participation awards for just showing up. At the same time we’ve also spent two generations throwing away Christianity, which teaches that people all have intrinsic value as being a child of God and loved by him. So when such people who have been told how special they are come to the self-realization that they are, like most people, ordinary in achievement, ordinary in skill they need something to define themselves as special and worthwhile and that something can’t be Christianity.  That’s where sexual identity comes in, furthermore it’s why we’re up to 72 made up genders and counting because we’ve reached a point where just being “gay” is not unique enough anymore.

CS. Lewis explains this in Screwtape 7

Any small coterie, bound together by some interest which other men dislike or ignore, tends to develop inside itself a hothouse mutual admiration, and towards the outer world, a great deal of pride and hatred which is entertained without shame because the “Cause” is its sponsor and it is thought to be impersonal.

This is why Frank Oz’s statement that Bert isn’t gay has been met with such anger. Generations of people have made gay activists so angry.  If it is true that there is more to being a human being that being “Gay” or “Straight” then the question becomes:  “What have I done with myself besides declaring myself “gay” or “transgender” or one of the other 70+ new genders that I am?  What actual meaning does my life have?

If you want to know why the suicide rate among youth is way it, that’s your explanation.

On the other hand it’s been a great plus for the far left that needs bodies for agitation:

There is a certain percentage of college kids who aren’t happy if they don’t have something to protest against, and in the absence of legitimate issues, they’ll invent something like a “campus rape epidemic” then organize rallies against this imaginary crisis. This is why “climate change” is the perfect cause for student activism — it’s the Snuffleupagus of issues, apparent only to the “enlightened.” Being ostentatiously concerned about global warming is a type of virtue signalling, a way to communicate your own moral and intellectual superiority, which is what most “progressive” activism is really about. Considering themselves too smart to believe in anything as ordinary as Christianity, atheistic youth who fancy themselves to be intellectuals become chumps, easily scammed by promoters of three-card Monte hustles like “climate change.”

Instant meaning and instant value, that’s what this idiocy gives but like any drug it doesn’t last.

This is the cost of a post-christian society an army of people desperately searching for meaning.  The Devil couldn’t be happier.

It’s a very sad thing and such people need our prayers.

Saturday morning I spent an hour watching the Google video that Breitbart put out.

If you haven’t watched it yet it’s here

There are several things that struck me about this video:

The least important observation is that the appearance of the crowd completely confirms the stereotype that people have to tech types which by an odd coincidence is also the least surprising thing to me as a person who spent years in tech and worked with tech people worldwide.

There doesn’t seem to be any talk at all about the actual work of google which in theory is to provide an effective search engine that businesses and individuals will pay for which is supposedly their business model. However there seems to be a great deal of talk about how to influence the votes of American so they act the way the people in the room want them to act.

The level of virtue signaling within that community is completely astounding. As I watch the fellow who at the end basically reads a manifesto about his white privilege and the folks who applaud him looks and sounds like something that John Cleese and Graham Chapman might have written for a Monty Python sketch.

In taking questions from employees about moving to Canada and the prospect of a third world war seriously Google management shows that expertise, even great genius level expertise in a particular field does not convey or imply expertise in other fields or even sense or sanity in everyday life.

For a group of people who are supposedly engineers and thus rooted in facts and data, they don’t seem to be big on objective reality when looking at the world.

The knowledge and revelation that Google has been financing and even providing incentives to employees to give donations to groups that are diametrically opposed to me, my beliefs and my faith should be a great incentive to folks like me to avoid its use and not reward companies that provide it with revenue.

The only thing more incredible than the left of virtue signaling is the complete lack of self-awareness around the group, particularly when someone asks about how they can affect information bubbles while not realizing that they are all living in one.

These are all telling things and they add up to two things that Ace of Spade’s morning rant sums up very well:

If the video were different, if it showed Google employees whooping it up and throwing MAGA hats into the air because they were so happy Trump won, you can bet that there would be many chin-stroking think pieces written about how the video calls into question Google’s objectivity. But seeing them openly weeping at Hillary’s loss apparently doesn’t raise that question. What’s really creepy is how full of themselves the Google execs are, like when Google VP Kent Walker answers a question by saying that Google must ensure that the rise of populism doesn’t turn into ‘a world war or something catastrophic’. I had no idea that the guys who run Google believe it’s their job to keep history on the correct path. I thought that their job was to provide a search engine that they claim everybody can use. Except, of course, for the Chinese, whose authorities cooked up a scheme with Google to let them see only what they allow. 

Not only are these people actively actively trying to influence you and the rest of the public toward either the views they desire you to have in order to create their own version of utopia but they consider this their primary mission as a company.

As the post at Aces notes, this mission to create heaven on earth doesn’t apply to totalitarian nations willing to pay the company vast amounts of cash to make sure that their own repressed people do not have access to information that might enable them to ease said oppression.

Put simply Google’s “Do no evil” motto is as Orwellian as the messages on the barn in Animal House and is wholly subjective.

In closing I should point out there is one ironic twist which comes from an exchange at the very end of the video fueled by the very last question asked by a man in a beanie with a propeller on his head:

Is there anything positive you see from this election result? (the audience laughs)

After one of the folks on stage  notes Trump’s desire to improve infrastructure another gives an interesting answer which concludes.

…national government been very gridlocked you have a situation you;re  aware of  perhaps the republicans have a lot of control over what happens and responsibility for that…

He’s very right about that so when you look at the booming stock market,  a surging economy, manufacturing returning, a strong foreign policy, ISIS in retreat and the best job market in history for blacks and Hispanics, every person in that room, particularly those who hold google stock and have seen it’s value rise over 46% since inauguration day ($806.91 to  $1172.53 Friday from $806.91) can thank the Republicans in congress,  Donald Trump in the White House  and every person who voted to put them there (no matter what Obama says)

On behalf of all of them:  You’re welcome.

Hmm that sounds good I wounder if someone would make it into a meme for me it I send it out of Gab? Paging Hogewash

That’s pretty good but all it needs is an ending

“Less regulation?”

“Oh, shut up!”

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Fr. Michael Harvey: I was trying to make it easier for you.
Maggie Harvey: I didn’t want it made easier, I wanted you to say ‘No’.

Cracker My Brother’s Keeper 1995

Yesterday Stacy McCain wrote something that really struck me:

There is a reason why slut-shaming exists. If sluts are not shamed — if promiscuity is celebrated and glamorized the way Sex and the City did — more young women will waste their youth the way Julia Baugher wasted hers. Who would want their daughter to end up that way, having ruined her reputation and squandered so many chances at happiness, desperately hoping at age 37 to settle for a “reasonable choice”?

. The reason why this struck me is that I just got back home from a week staying with my friend Vinne Kelly hie brother and his 90 year old Dad in Lithonia GA right in sight of Stone Mountain. I went to school with 40 years ago with his brother George who lives a few minutes away A few hours before we flew out Saturday Night we had lunch at Bradley’s Bar-B-Que (the best BBQ I had during my trip)

While eating I thanked Mr. Kelly for having us in his house. He replied that he had taught his sons to have many acquaintances but few friends.

Now one of the things that age has taught me is that the easiest way to tell the difference between a friend and an acquaintance is either during a time of trouble or when you are about to do something incredibly stupid, foolish or both.

It’s my experience that an acquaintance will regardless of their own actual opinion will go along with what you are doing and if it’s something that society is accepting or encouraging, might even even encourage you on.

For example to suggest to a young woman going to college that he best way to avoid a bad situation might be to avoid excessive drinking at a party or even better avoiding such parties where people drink to excess is something that will cause woman’s studies departments all over the nation to label you as a misogynist who wants to control women.

To suggest to a girl like Miriam Weeks aka Belle Knox that rather being paid to have sex with strangers on film so that people can forever masturbate to the sight of said film to make up for your shortfall in the $70k tuition and expense cost at Duke, “settling” for a college that might cost 40K a year might be a better and more dignified decision can get you tagged as a fundamentalist and pilloried on social media.

To state that getting a disease like AIDS is almost impossible if you follow the biblical rules concerning sex (celibacy before marriage monogamy afterwards) while also eschewing drugs and sharing needles and marrying someone who does the same you are homophobic

To suggest to a co-worker that having an operation to remove their penis and taking hormones for the rest of their life in order to pretend they are a girl is not only dangerous but that the suicide rate of such people is very high might even get you fired in some states.

To suggest that obesity is an unhealthy thing means you are a hateful person who is “fat slaming”

Yet the reality is all these messages an actual friend, someone who really cares about you, might say if you are leaning in any of these directions while an acquaintance would go along to get along.

We live in an era where basic sense that our grandfathers knew and understood is called “hate” that voting the wrong way gets you tagged as a Nazi and eating at the wrong chicken place make you in the eyes of some a bigot. It’s no coincidence that when people quote St. Francis they leave out the key line from his lists of things to be an instrument of the Lord’s peace beause it doesn’t match the “hippie” image that they’ve created of him.

Where there is error, Truth

It’s that lack of the courage to speak plan truths aloud combined with an age where acceptance on social media by people you will never meet is of more value than having actual friends who will see things as they are and tell you so that is the cause of much of the trouble in the world.

I suggest that Ms Baugher like many of the women Stacy McCain writes about have many acquaintances but few real friends who were willing to take the risks of rejection, derision or social opprobrium to warn her away from bad life decisions.

That is a crying same and until that deficit can be tackled she and those like her will need our prayers.

Closing on a brighter note Bradley’s Bar-B-Que was really good and you should give them a shot if you’re in the area

I’ve noticed lately that fewer and fewer people know how behave in a respectful manner while in public.  I know I must not be the first person to make this observation and I’m willing to bet that a great many others have made the same observation in recent times.

There was an incident this past weekend at the Woodstock Fair, in Woodstock Connecticut that prompted the writing of this article.  I was sitting in the second row of seats that were set up for audiences in front of one of the stages.  I was with a couple hundred other people who were there to listen to a particular concert.  Unfortunately very few of us were able to hear the music because there were so many groups in the audience that insisted on carrying out loud conversations during the entire hour and a half concert.  The sound system was more than adequate and so was the volume of the music.  It was just that the groups were so loud and obnoxious.  There were five different loud and obnoxious groups in my immediate vicinity, including a couple sitting in the front row that were the loudest.  I was there to listen to music but instead was forced to listen to a lengthy and detailed discussion about every single painful dental procedure one of the women experienced.

If this was just an isolated incident I don’t believe it would be worth doing an article about it.  That incident however is a symptom of problems our society is facing right now.  Other symptoms of these problems include college students shouting down everyone that has a different viewpoint, members of the Trump Administration being harassed and bullied by mobs when they show up at restaurants, and Antifa physically attacking a group trying to hold a prayer meeting.

Morality, discipline, manners, and respect for others are concepts that are no longer taught in public schools.  Feeling good about yourself and the belief that you are the most important person in the universe have replaced those old fashion concepts.  None of those ten or so loud individuals, just in my area, gave a second thought to the far greater number of individuals who sat there for the sole purpose of listening to the concert.

Schools have stopped teaching us the important truth that every individual has a responsibility to exercise their right of freedom of speech, along with every other right, in a manner that does not interfere with the rights of anyone else.  Responsibly coexisting with others while we are exercising our rights was a frequent topic preached by those who wrote and ratified the Constitution and Bill of Rights. Those loud individuals do have freedom of speech, just like each and every other individual.  Every individual in that audience however had the right to listen to and enjoy the concert.  Since the audience was sitting in an area designated for them, their right to listen trumped the free speech rights of the loud individuals.  The loud individuals had the rest of the fair grounds to talk.  They could have sat in a different area and conversed while listening to the music and not pissed off a lot of people.

Every symptom I mentioned earlier in this article could be solved if every individual exercised their rights in a manner that did not interfere with the rights of others.  Colleges used to be bastions of freedom of speech for everyone, where everyone could have respectful back and forth dialogues.   If everyone respected the right of everyone else to dine where they choose would people be harassed into fleeing restaurants because of who their boss is?  There is never an excuse for violence against anyone.  It should be repulsive for everyone to hear that people are being taught that words can be violence and that this supposed violence must be stamped out by real violence.

The message that we must exercise our rights with responsibility is a crucial message that all schools should impart on their students.  Since schools are not spreading that message I believe it is vital that we spread it ourselves.

First they came for Alex Jones and his Info Wars and so many stayed silent, including too many on the political right.  When the same social media organizations come to silence their next right wing website will so may remain silent, or will it be too late?  Once censorship like this begins, there is usually no way to stop it.  The same forces that are silencing Alex Jones have been gunning for Drudge and Breitbart for years.  I fear that it will not be long before those two, and many others receive the same treatment.  The best and only time to resist censorship is immediately, when it begins, and to resist it as forcefully as possible.  Everyone should condemn this shameful treatment of Alex Jones and his Info Wars, no matter if you agree with what he has to say or not.

I firmly believe censorship, of any nature, is always wrong.  I firmly believe everyone has a right to say whatever they want to say, and everyone has a right to listen to whatever they want to listen to.  The most common justification for silencing someone is to label what they have to say as hate speech.  What exactly is hate speech. you might be wondering?  That question is impossible to answer because the concept is way too subjective.  Far too often, any ideas espoused by those on the political right are labeled hate speech by those on the political left, and then those ideas are banned.

This Breitbart Article describes why the silencing of Info Wars happened.

Big tech’s coordinated purge of InfoWars — which was hit by bans from Apple, Facebook, Spotify and YouTube in rapid succession — did not occur in a vacuum. On this issue, Silicon Valley bowed to CNN journalists and Democrat politicians who ceaselessly lobbied for the site to be censored.

It’s a sign of how the concentration of power in America has shifted from big government to big tech that politicians are now lobbying tech companies rather than the other way round, but that’s exactly what happened over the course of the past few months, as Democrats applied relentless pressure on Facebook and other Silicon Valley giants to censor InfoWars.

It is unsociable that members of the Democratic Party would lobby for censoring InfoWars, or anyone else.  This attack of Alex Jones’ freedom of speech was politically motivated.

As you can see in this article by the AP, cries of hate speech were the justification for this purge.

Major tech companies have begun to ban right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones from their services, reflecting a more aggressive enforcement of policies against hate speech following protests on social media.

Facebook has taken down four pages belonging to Jones, including two featuring his “InfoWars” show, for violating its hate speech and bullying policies. Over the past several days, Apple, YouTube and Spotify have also removed material published by Jones. Twitter, which hasn’t banned Jones, has also faced similar calls.

Does Alex Jones or InfoWars engage in anything that can reasonably be called hate speech?  On this I am no expert.  Before this story broke I had never been to InfoWars, or viewed any of his videos.  This is only because I already have a dozen or so websites I visit daily for my news and political information.  I did not have time for another.  Based on what I’ve seen in the past two days, I have not seen any evidence, on just InfoWars, of what could be called hate speech.  Even if the site was nothing but “hate speech” I would still decry the silencing of his sites as forcefully as possible.

Brent Bozell of News Busters has similar opinions on this.  Here is what he had to say in this article:

I don’t support Alex Jones and what InfoWars produces. He’s not a conservative. However, banning him and his outlet is wrong. It’s not just a slippery slope, it’s a dangerous cliff that these social media companies are jumping off to satisfy CNN and other liberal outlets….Social media sites are supposedly neutral platforms, but they are increasingly becoming opportunities for the left and major media to censor any content that they don’t like.

Conservatives are increasingly concerned that InfoWars is not the end point for those who want to ban speech. It’s just the beginning. We are rapidly approaching a point where censorship of opposing voices is the norm. That’s dangerous.

Ben Shapiro, who is no fan of Alex Jones, is quoted in this Daily Wire Article as saying:

Trust in social media is declining nearly as fast as trust in media overall. There’s a reason for that. And it’s not because social media tolerates voices like Jones. It’s because they don’t tolerate voices like Jones while tolerating voices who are just as bad on the political Left – and they show no signs of limiting their censorship to Alex Jones.

Some Democrats are reported to be working on a plan that would very heavily regulate the internet.  The main objective of that would be to completely strangle all forms of communication from the political right.  Here are the details.  Censorship of conservatives by social media is a major problem but government intervention is not the solution.  Government intervention will only make this problem far worse, just like government intervention always does.  Government intervention is not called for in this case.  These companies are private companies.  They have every right to run their companies any way they want to, including censoring others.  I have every tight to speak out against this censorship, and all censorship, as loudly as I wish to, and I’m imploring others to do so as well.

I laughed when I read these comments from Candice Bergen about the Murphy Brown reboot:

Bergen meanwhile was asked after the panel about the show’s relevance at a time when the president is attacking the press.

“The news now, thanks to our president, is in constant turmoil,” she said. “I think it will be reassuring to see Murphy sticking up for the press and sticking up to the president.”

Stand up for the media?  Mothers and children are still paying the costs of her show “sticking up” for single motherhood a quarter century ago, but funny as that is the real comedy came next

Asked what she thought when Trump called the media the “enemy of the people,” the actress replied, “I just thought: ‘We’re screwed.’”

Bergen added that she’s preparing for the possibility that the president might slam her show. “I don’t know what the reaction will be, and I’m trying to brace myself,” she said.   

“Brace myself?”  That a bigger joke than any we’ll see from the series.  Bergen and writer Diane English are praying for President Trump to attack the show.  They understand that conservatives are unlikely to bother with it and the best way to make their show a candidate for all kinds of Emmy contention and credibility from the never Trump left is a hit from the president.

How stupid does she think we are?

Son of man, speak thus to your countrymen: When I bring the sword against a country, and the people of this country select one of their number to be their watchman, and the watchman, seeing the sword coming against the country, blows the trumpet to warn the people, anyone hearing but not heeding the warning of the trumpet and therefore slain by the sword that comes against him, shall be responsible for his own death. He heard the trumpet blast yet refused to take warning; he is responsible for his own death, for had he taken warning he would have escaped with his life.

But if the watchman sees the sword coming and fails to blow the warning trumpet, so that the sword comes and takes anyone, I will hold the watchman responsible for that person’s death, even though that person is taken because of his own sin.

Ezekiel 33:2-6

There was a scholar of the law who stood up to test him and said, “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus said to him, “What is written in the law? How do you read it?”

He said in reply, “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” He replied to him, “You have answered correctly; do this and you will live.” But because he wished to justify himself, he said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

Luke 10:25-29

One of the favorite phrases that Fr. Joe, my pastor at St. Bernard’s Parish at St. Camillus church likes to use is “Seeing oneself in the light of truth.”
Seeing things in the light of truth allows one self to avoid problems, repent from sin and help others in bad situations. This can be a very unpleasant because seeing oneself in the light of truth means recognizing and acknowledging one sins and flaws that exist and once they are acknowledged one has to make the difficult decision to fix what’s wrong with us and improve or ignore it and regress.

As hard as this can be what is even harder is when this is applied to others, this can lead to conflict and in a secular society that celebrates excess and sin to speak up against either is to risk the wrath of a sometimes violent but always self righteous crowd which vigorously defends any sin or obsession because to recognize these problems in others might require us to look at our own lives in that same light.

Speak about the dangers of obesity? You’re fat slaming!

Speak about the dangers of promiscuity? You’re slut slaming!

Declare the reality of male and female? You’re Transphobic!

Speak about the reality of what marriage is or that a child does best with a father and mother? You’re Homophobic!

State that excessive alcohol is a bad idea on campus? You’re judgmental!

Speak aloud that abortion is the killing of a human being? You’re anti-woman!

Say that the best way to avoid poverty and disease is to wait till marriage to have children? You’re puritanical!

All of these things are truths that have been understood for millennia yet today’s society, particular the media and entertainment industry not only reject these things but in states when their allies have political power have pushed for laws to take punitive actions against those who would dare to speak these truths aloud? Why, because to even acknowledge these truths is to see oneself in the light of truth and that above all other things must not be done.

And that brings us to Rick Genest, also known as Zombie Boy.

I had not heard of him, but apparently he thought that tattooing his entire body so he would look like a skeleton was a great a idea.

Now this is objectively insane and in a sane age family friends and loved ones might have said aloud and even a Tattoo artist when asked to do this to him might have said: “That’s nuts I ain’t doing that, you need help man.” And thus acknowledging the problem aloud they would have either encouraged him to seek a psychologist to help him to taken action to move the state to do so.

However this is not a sane age and the Entertainment/Hollywood/Media crowd absolutely loved it, they accepted him and gave him entrée to their world, which in the Media/Entertainment/Hollywood secular culture is the greatest honor that can be bestowed on an ordinary person next to victim-hood.

But alas objective reality exists and the reality is this person was dealing with serious personal demons and no amount of fetting by the right people could change this so one year shy of Christ’s age at his crucifixion, Rick Genest took his own life.

Tattooed Lady Gaga muse Zombie Boy, 32, ‘killed himself by jumping from the 4th floor balcony’ of his Montreal apartment building
Rick Genest, 32, is believed to have jumped from a balcony on Wednesday
Cops say he jumped from the 4th floor, but his family believes it was an accident
Genest known as Zombie Boy for bone and organ tattoos inked all over his body

Naturally Ms. Gaga tweeted a glowing tribute

She had originally put out a tweet blaming the culture of silence about mental illness but deleted said tweet. You can read it here but walked it back.

Rod Dreher critique of the original tweet was different than the family’s

What strikes me as so odd about Lady Gaga’s tweet is the idea that “the culture” led Zombie Boy to kill himself. The man turned his entire body into an advertisement for his own mental illness. What would Lady Gaga have “the culture” do? Is this the fault of “the culture,” or of this man?

Or is it the fault not of the culture, but of a culture — such as elite pop culture, including the high fashion world in which Zombie Boy moved and modeled — that sees plain evidence of a man’s suffering and internal disorder, made manifest in his body, and refuses to regard that as a sign of mental illness?

Think of it: Rick Genest had his skin permanently altered so that he would resemble a skeleton. This turned out to be his ticket to partying with the elites. And we’re shocked that he killed himself?

The Phantom soapbox is more blunt:

When a handsome man has every inch of his body covered in -painful- tattooing, furthermore depicting images of rot and death, it is a sign that he’s having a problem. This man had a biohazard emblem a foot tall on his chest and a skull tattooed on his face, that’s not something a healthy, well-adjusted person does. They get “Mom” on a shoulder, or a tribal arm band. Maybe a heart on their butt or something.

Yes, I’m actually saying that his body art was a manifestation of a dangerous illness. Which killed him by the way, making it a -fatal- illness.
Again, I’m not sitting in harsh judgement on the individuals involved in that art. They didn’t make him that way, it isn’t their fault. But, the bald facts are: fatal mental illness.

My harsh judgement is reserved for the people screaming at their computers right now because I dared mention excessive tattoos and mental illness in the same sentence. Radical body modification is strongly correlated with suicide, and y’all need to pull your heads out of your asses. There’s some guy out there getting surgical modifications to make him look like a Ken doll. He’s got a problem, which might very well kill him.

It isn’t cosplay, people.

The bottom line is this. Rick Genest was a mentally ill man and rather than seeing this in the light of truth and work to get him help, which would have involved time and effort and carrying a cross, in other words actually show love for him, those in a position to show that love of neighbor or to be the watchman sounding the alarm, decided to keep silent either to avoid the time and effort involved in helping him or out of fear of being thought judgmental.

And of course the media/hollywood/entertainment society celebrated and encouraged him because how could they judge his excesses as extreme without judging their own.  His excesses complemented and confirmed their own.

Or put simply to see Rick Genest in the light of truth, just might have involved seeing themselves in that same light and given that choice, better a dead Zombie Boy who can be remembered as an icon than a live Rick Genest who can be acknowledged as a child of God who needs help.

We need to pray for Rick Genest, yes he was a suicide but I suggest you listen to my interview with Fr. Chris Alar from yesterday’s Your Prayer Intentions radio show, but most of all pray for the courage to not only see ourselves in the light of truth but to have the courage to speak the truth in love to others even if it means risking pain and rebuke. Truth and love are powerful things, they can change a live and maybe even save it.

Make no Mistake Rick Genest is one of the millions of casualties of the culture war, and there are tens of millions of others who can still be saved if we have the courage to try.