Random Thoughts is writing about what is happening to her finances.
No one has defended President Bush more than I have during his time in office. No one.
But his signing the “bailout bill” that Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and the rest of them were giddy over this afternoon – it has stunned me. I know he had to do it. I know there were no choices, here. But I am still stunned.
When I heard Joe Biden talk about giving courts the power to reset mortgage principles I thought he’d simply misspoken. Today I see it is a central point in this garbage “bailout” that I am less-and-less persuaded we “absolutely” needed, this “quickly” – mostly because I so distrust the manner in which this whole episode has been served, and the bad faith in which certain moves were played.
I feel very strongly that this bill is a nuclear blast to the economic foundations of the nation. There are laughing hyenas waiting to feed on the carcass.
I was driving for a bit today and heard a little of Rush Limbaugh, laughing, giggling – apparently with some irony – and telling his listeners, “it’s not time to worry yet, I’ll tell you when,” as though he imagines himself Atticus Finch and we’re all his little Scouts.
Sorry, I didn’t find it reassuring. Over the years many of his listeners have written angry emails to me chastising me and telling me “not to doubt,” Rush because “he is never wrong.” So, maybe he reassured them, but it didn’t work for me. I can never feel good when Pelosi and Reid are smiling that hard. This is not about political party. This is just basic distrust. There are people in the GOP I distrust, too. But they were not the ones laughing and partying today, so I focus on the ones who were.
A long while back Thomas Cahill wrote a book called How the Irish Saved Civilization., in which he chronicled how the monks and scribes in Ireland managed to preserve the West’s treasury of knowledge, and how they traveled and taught.
I’ve been writing recently, about products made by monastics – the outstanding Mystic Monk Coffee, offered by the Carmelite Monks of Wyoming, the incredibly good lip balms and lotions of the Dominican Nuns of Summit, NJ, and how I plan to make their products – and others like them – a big part of my Christmas giving. I want, of course, to support their houses of prayer, because I think we need people in the world whose main job in life is to pray for the rest of us.
Far from “shutting themselves up,” the whole point of monastic life is to denude oneself and look to serve others. In the multimedia piece found here, following the Summit Nuns, one of the postulants says, “living this way is like being married to twenty people.”
But now, I wonder if we should turn to these folks, not simply for their goods, but to get re-connected with the idea of living simpler lives, wherein our core concerns are less about ourselves, and more about the community. That defines the life these people live, each day.
The Benedictine motto is “Ora et Labora” – Pray and work. A monastic life is a communal one, and as we’ve discussed here before, it is not a life that can extrapolated into the society-at-large, because the life – which is a little microcosm of the socialist ideal, (yes, it is that radical) only works when it is voluntary, not when it is coerced, or enforced. The monastic enters into the life, freely, everyday. He or she is always free to leave. That liberty is the whole point; without it, the monastic life would be the old Soviet one.
But lived freely, there seems to be a great deal of room for creativity and for reaching out, while still maintaining boundaries and freedom.
This bill passing and being signed today fills me with great dread. I recognise and accept that soon the nation I grew up in will likely not be the one I leave to my children, no matter who wins this election.
Washington has nothing at all to teach us at this point. Washington is corrupt and broken. “Society,” too, is broken. Watch these young men march into their room in lockstep chanting, “Alpha-Omega, Alpha-Omega” about Barack Obama – a mere man – and crediting him with the imposition of almost god-like inspirations.
When I saw that the first words that jumped into my head were Go out from among them, and be ye separate… A little dramatic, I admit. But the video creeped me out. Idolatry is not helpful at this point.
So, here we are, walking a road that seems to be splitting into a faultline. One side is more worldly than the other and we can straddle it for a while, but eventually one must jump either way, or fall into the chasm.
Limbaugh says “it’s not time to worry, yet; I’ll tell you when.” Well, that’s fine. He might be somebody’s father-figure, but he’s never been mine. I think I will keep my own counsel on this.
And my own counsel says: prayer and fasting is the training for the spiritual athlete. And training for what is ahead seems prudent, just now.
Rod Dreher writes the speech John McCain should give, but won’t.
I’m thinking that the timing here is no accident.
Here is a video by the GOP, but it’s too little, too late:
Michael Malone at PJM: Pretty unhappy
Barney Franks’ conflict of interest; I guess he’s past prosecuting, now. That’s okay. As MLK said, “a lie can’t stand forever.”