Friday Links; Weird & Wonderful!

Had a conversation last week with an acquaintance who ascribes any-and-all resistance to the Park51 Mosque/Cultural Center as “bigotry and xenophobia.”

I said, “that’s way too easy, cheap and stale; it’s more complicated than that, and reducing every controversy to “bigotry” is not serving the nation well.”

I suppose I could just save my breath from now on, and refer the question to this piece by Charles Krauthammer

Spengler on The Fall of Rome

VDH: Decline is a choice

So is allowing the nation to be perceived as a weak horse

Okay, so when I said you weren’t making America safer in 2008, that was just words, or, when I say you’ve have made America safer, that’s just words, now. Or something.

Fearless: Well, he did say “Do Not Be Afraid” a lot – How John Paul II Changed the Political World

Why Catholics don’t understand Economics

100 Years: I like this site and the pictures! (via)

It makes for bad romantic comedy
because the quest for perfection is false and ultimately defeats the self and society.

I don’t really get the whole Glenn Beck thing
, I don’t really understand the upcoming rally (I confess I haven’t paid much attention) but this is one hell of a speech

One for Buster: discussing this over lunch!

I love weirdness like this

This is cool. Maybe I have been writing the wrong kind of blog!

It’s all about perspective

Nannies and Parents

Purposeful disorientation!

The Scavi!

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • baleen

    The result of following the advise of Charles Krauthammer and Victor Hanson was demonstrated nicely by the 8 years of the George W. Bush admin.

  • Mandy P.

    Hi there! I’ve been reading your blog on and off for about a year now, but have never commented before. I’ve seen you say several times that you don’t get Glenn Beck. As a fan, and someone who would be at the rally tomorrow were it not for a lack of money (in fact, my parents and some aunts and uncles flew into D.C. this afternoon so they could be there), I’d like to try and explain.

    Glenn Beck can be pretty over-the-top in style and yes, he cries. But overall I get from him the following: (1) he genuinely loves America; (2) he’s horrified at what he sees going on in the country; (3) he’s found himself in a position where he has a huge megaphone that he can use to try and wake people up. That last part- waking people up- is why I think he can be so in-your-face with his presentation. He’s trying to get people’s attention so that they open their eyes and see what’s going on around them.

    Beck is really big on being honorable, and given his stated love of and inspiration by George Washington, I think he’s trying to inspire that kind of attitude/outlook in others. And lately he’s been very outspoken on our need, as a nation, to turn back to God. Hence the gathering tonight for prayer and the rally tomorrow.

    On a more personal note, I will be going down to my local parish on Sunday for the Mass, and contacting whoever it is I need to contact to get into the RCIA class. I’ve also contacted the Coming Home Network International so that I can get some extra support through the conversion process. This move has been partly inspired by Glenn Beck.

    I’ve long felt that the answers Protestantism provides are inadequate, and in the past year had started studying Roman Catholicism. I’ve been in a place of spiritual vacillation for a while and had not managed to even check out a Catholic church in person. A few weeks ago, Glenn Beck was prompting people to pray for 40 days before the rally and the first thing he said we all need to do is to find out what we believe and turn to God. I’ve been praying ever since and it’s prompted me to make the decision to convert.

    Sorry for writing a tome. I just wanted to offer some perspective, from someone who is a fan of Beck, as to why he’s become such a force.

  • http://vita-nostra-in-ecclesia.blogspot.com/ Bender

    A virtual tour of the scavi and more info here.

  • http://www.renataphotography.com Renata

    Dear Mandy P., First of all, welcome to your journey of becoming Catholic! I love hearing what brings people to the point of conversion! I’m always inspired. (Btw, I’ve worked as an RCIA director in the past and know that parishes differ widely on how they do RCIA, so I’ll pray you have a great and complete experience! Feel free to keep in touch as I know the conversion process can seem like stepping out into the unknown and without a whole lot of support.) Also, from what I know of Glenn Beck, I think you’ve expressed his intentions very well. I think you should tell him your story! Blessings on your journey!

  • http://www.renataphotography.com Renata

    Oh, and thanks Elizabeth for posting my link! So glad to have those images of Mother Teresa’s birthday celebrations shared!
    :-)

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  • Trump

    Had a conversation last week with an acquaintance who ascribes any-and-all resistance to the Park51 Mosque/Cultural Center as “bigotry and xenophobia.”

    >>>>>

    Why do you even bother to speak to one such as that? They cannot be engaged with, they view others with contempt, they believe people who think differently to be evil.

    With people such as that your best bet is to avoid them entirely and simply let them learn their lesson. Evidentally not enough of them learned their lesson on 9/11. I suspect there will be more teachable moments in the future.

  • http://runswithangels.wordpress.com/ Jan

    Mandy – good luck as you follow the road home!:)

    I second Renata – I’ve taught RCIA and there are very big differences in what is taught in various parishes and dioceses. Here’s to hoping yours is a good one!

  • Mandy P.

    Thanks to both Jan and Renata! I appreciate the encouragement. :)

  • Lori

    Mandy, you write an impressive post! I think you’re spot-on about Glenn Beck. Wish I were going to be at the rally too! And welcome to the Catholic Church. One beauty of our Church is that there are always more treasures waiting to be discovered – treaures of saints and saintly people, writings, music, art, architecture – 2,000 years of wisdom and beauty (not all of it, of course, but when you look at the big picture it’s easy to focus on the best!).

  • http://vita-nostra-in-ecclesia.blogspot.com/ Bender

    Mandy — let me join in with the others in this “group hug.”

    This is actually a good weekend for contemplating coming into the Catholic Church since today and tomorrow the Church calendar recognizes St. Augustine, who was himself dissatisfied with the answers that he was getting from other religious groups, and his mother St. Monica, who prayed and prayed, and prayed some more, that her son would find his home in the Church, until finally, he did. Be assured, you have company on your journey. May it be a fruitful one.

    I too have had some experience with teaching RCIA, as well as other religious education for adults and teens. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions (and if I might be presumptuous, I’m sure everyone else here would be happy to do the same). We are, after all, one family.

    God be with you!

  • JuliB

    Welcome Home Mandy!!

    I’m a Beck fan too :)

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    Krauthammer: Why, racist resentment toward a black president.

    Glenn Beck: {Obama} has a deep-seated hatred for white people.

  • http://vita-nostra-in-ecclesia.blogspot.com/ Bender

    Glenn Beck: {Obama} has a deep-seated hatred for white people.

    I don’t know why this faux scandalization by this statement. Most liberals, including most white liberals, have a “deep-seated hatred for white people.” And, by the way, they are none too fond of black people either. Obama is a liberal, indeed, he is far to the left of liberal. In practically every public statement he makes, as well as those by his minions, he promotes class conflict and division, he harbors and fans resentments, be they economic, religious, cultural, or racial. His entire world-view is one of attack, of “taking on,” of tearing down, of putting the boot to the neck of others.

    White people are only one of several groups on Obama’s hate list. Why? Because he is a leftist. And that’s what leftists do.

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    Bender: White people are only one of several groups on Obama’s hate list.

    No racial resentment there. Thanks for emphasizing the point.

  • http://vita-nostra-in-ecclesia.blogspot.com/ Bender

    No, there is racial resentment there — but it is by YOU. I just explained that the hatred by Obama, et al. has NOTHING to do with his being black and EVERYTHING to do with his being a leftist-liberal. Conservatives look at Obama and see a leftist-liberal. It is YOU who look at him and see a black guy.

    Don’t project your own overt and obsessive race consciousness on the rest of us.

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    You just keep emphasizing the point over and over again. Using the languge of “leftist” is just part of the ancient American language of racial resentment that was used against King and others in their day.

    Certainly, not everyone who objects to Obama’s policies is harboring racial resentment, but it is prevalent in the so-called Tea Party.

    In King’s day he was accused of deliberately undermining the foundations of internal order in this country, of being a communist, a demagogue, a deviant, an extremist, even, gasp, a Yankee. So what else is new. Even black preachers were wary, hence, the Letter from a Birmingham Jail.

  • dry valleys

    Beck should be a bit more specific about religion. His attempts to say it’s pretty much all good so long as you’re right-wing aren’t very impressive. What is he worried about, does he ot want people dwelling on what he really thinks?

  • baleen

    “. His attempts to say it’s pretty much all good so long as you’re right-wing aren’t very impressive. ”

    That’s the line every right-wing entertainer/politico spouts.

    I suppose as long as you don’t really believe in Jesus it’s okay to hate the poor.

  • dry valleys

    Plus, an awful lot of people haven’t grasped that these are entertainers, whose main & possiblky sole aim is to enrich themselves.

  • Lori

    You just keep emphasizing the point over and over again. Using the languge of “leftist” is just part of the ancient American language of racial resentment that was used against King and others in their day.

    Zachriel, are you aware that King himself was a Republican? And it was largely Republicans who were the vanguard of the civil rights movement?

  • dry valleys

    Wasn’t that in the days when white southerners were overwhelmingly Democrats? Surely party politics have changed too much since that time for it to be relevant. Unless you really want to discuss which way the south went from 1968 onwards.

  • Moonstone

    Elizabeth, I have no idea why you attract such hate-filled and uninformed liberals as you do. I can only hope that these people aren’t Catholics — but unfortunately I tend to think they are.

  • CHS

    Re: lunch discussion. Made me think of this: The trumpet shall sound and the dead shall be raised incorruptible.

  • CHS

    I mean this

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    Lori: are you aware that King himself was a Republican?

    King voted for Kennedy and Johnson, but it’s irrelevant to today’s political parties. Johnson knew that signing the Civil Rights Act would forever split the South from the Democratic Party, but he did it anyway. Nixon then implemented the cynical Southern Strategy. The parties have since realigned.

    Lori: And it was largely Republicans who were the vanguard of the civil rights movement?

    Some, but certainly not all. The real battle, where the political sacrifices were made, was in the Democratic Party.

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  • P. Buchta

    Moonstone-
    I am a Catholic and liberal. Beck does it for the sensationalism. This is not what he truly believes in. He believes in the three Gs because it has make him lots of money.

    As far as IVF goes, Mary Rose Somarriba is wrong in her assumptions and argumentative reasoning in certain respects. Case in point would be a woman who has lost the ability of her tubes to function due to an earlier abdominal infection and wants to have kids.

  • Camille

    Hello Anchoress – I too an a first time commenter and Glenn Beck fan. I think that he might we worth paying a bit more attention to… While some may deride him as being in it for the money, I would firmly disagree. I don’t think that someone who came back from alcoholism and losing everything and who credits that turnaround to finding Jesus could then do something that dishonest. He talks about turning to God and leading lives of integrity and honor. He has shows on the historical roots of progressivism. None of that is generally considered in our culture to be a big, sexy, moneymaker but he does it anyway. I think his message is a good one and gaining ground daily and easily ties back to our Catholic call to be people of integrity and love.

  • Elizabeth Scalia

    Peter, As I recall you were once banned from this site for presuming–with an extreme lack of charity–to know the heart,mind and soul of others, and to rather pridefully insist that you had a right to declare for the world the motives of others. That can easily be arranged again. Knock it off.

  • http://vita-nostra-in-ecclesia.blogspot.com/ Bender

    Wow. I didn’t know that Marx and Lenin and Stalin and Pelosi and Reid were/are black. That must be it. And folks were against HillaryCare because Bill was our first black president.

  • Grace

    Hello. I read your blog from time to time. Admittedly, not often enough to get a good understanding of your positions and opinions. Perhaps you often say you don’t get Glen Beck. Sometimes I don’t either. A lot of the time I do. But really what’s not to get about people gathering early in the morning on the Mall,in front of the Lincoln Memorial, and singing “God Bless America” at sunrise?

  • SKAY

    So glad to read your post Mandy P. I am thrilled for you.

    Thanks to Glen I am now going back and reading about the history of our founding and the incredible men and women who were part of it-and how religious and principled most of them were. Sorry to say I really knew nothing about Samual Adams who was a very important founder.
    It is so important to realize what these people endured in order to give us the freedoms that we have–but are losing fast. He has also found older books that point out important contributions of African Americans to our founding that we never hear about.

    Glen repeated a quote from Pope Benedict XVI on his show that I think is so relevant to what is happening right now—

    “Wherever politics tries to be redemptive, it is promising too much. Where it wishes to do the work of God, it becomes not divine, but demonic.”

  • SPQR

    It gets more and more bizarre, contrived and bougus, ulterior motives attributed to racism or to bigotry.

    If I disliked watermelon, collard greens and ribs, there are, no doubt, some people who would be loony enough to call me a racist. That isn’t a stretch – not anymore it isn’t.

    As I see it, this has become a country of bitchy gossips, who can’t mind their own damned business, and who are always making assumptions, conjectures and accusations which aren’t supported by the facts.

    Pardon me for gossiping. I just felt bitchy. See? It’s contagious.

  • SPQR

    Oops, that’s bogus, not bougus. But then, I suppose that it could be bouges, too, if you’re racist.

  • P. Buchta

    Elizabeth:

    I retract my statement about Glenn Beck.

  • JuliB

    re: Glen Back doing it for the money. Yes, that’s possible, but wouldn’t the death threats and spewed hatred make it less likely?

  • JuliB

    I just read that the Huffington Post is offering 100K for any sex tapes or phone records (?) of Glen Beck.

    Wow.

  • CV

    Elizabeth,

    If you do nothing else in Rome, I strongly recommend the Scavi tour. It was, hands down, my most memorable experience there (in a city that is filled with memorable experiences).

    As far as Glenn Beck is concerned, I personally can only tolerate him in small doses (mainly because of his over-the-top manner) but I do think he’s sincere and well-meaning. He’s doing a service by simply calling his viewers to educate (or reeducate themselves about American history and the Constitution).

    It was interesting to watch coverage of his event over the weekend (contrasted with Al Sharpton’s counter-rally). Most commentators had to admit that attendees at both rallies were restrained and well-behaved. The crowd at the Beck rally was at least as massive as the annual March for Life in DC (another event that regularly draws huge crowds of thoughtful and well-behaved citizens but receives scant coverage).

    Krauthammer is spot-on once again. The problem the majority of Americans have with Obama is with his leftist policies, not the color of his skin.

    That’s the reality, Zachriel.

    Time for a reality check.

  • CV

    If you do nothing else in Rome, I strongly recommend the Scavi tour. It was, hands down, my most memorable experience there (in a city that is filled with memorable experiences).

    As far as Glenn Beck is concerned, I personally can only tolerate him in small doses (mainly because of his over-the-top manner) but I do think he’s sincere and well-meaning. He’s doing a service by simply calling his viewers to educate (or reeducate themselves about American history and the Constitution).

    It was interesting to watch coverage of his event over the weekend (contrasted with Al Sharpton’s counter-rally). Most commentators had to admit that attendees at both rallies were restrained and well-behaved. The crowd at the Beck rally was at least as massive as the annual March for Life in DC (another event that regularly draws huge crowds of thoughtful and well-behaved citizens but receives scant coverage).

    Krauthammer is spot-on once again. The problem the majority of Americans have with Obama is with his leftist policies, not the color of his skin.

    That’s the reality, Zachriel.

    Time for a reality check.

  • Doc

    Zach, help me out here, I’m confused. Conservatives dislike liberal policies and politicians and have ever since liberals have been expanding federal government power and pushing the country to the Left.

    The current president is the most liberal we’ve ever had and has a fair amount of African blood flowing through him. Conservatives’ dislike of liberal policies can now be attributed to racism, even though conservatives opposed many of the same policies for decades.

    Bill Clinton was declared the country’s first black president by a black liberal. In fact, Bill Clinton was so loved that the definition of sexual harrassment was altered to avoid criticizing a president who protected abortion.

    This was the same sexual harrassment that was so strictly defined that a mere false allegation of it nearly denied Clarence Thomas his Supreme Court seat. Thomas is still hated by liberals. Yet he has more African blood flowing through him than the president does.

    Given the rules of the game you liberals establish, how can liberal hatred of Justice Thomas be attributed to anything but racism?

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    Krauthammer: Why, racist resentment toward a black president.

    Glenn Beck (imitating Malia): Daddy, why do you hate black people so much?

    Doc: Conservatives’ dislike of liberal policies can now be attributed to racism, even though conservatives opposed many of the same policies for decades.

    You’re conflating conservative opposition with racial resentment and xenophobia, and those that turn a blind-eye to it.

  • Doc

    Do you admire Justice Thomas, Zach? If not, why are you such a racist?

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    Doc, you’re still conflating the notions. One can certainly oppose Obama’s policies or Thomas’s suitability for the bench without being a racist. That wasn’t the issue raised, but that there is a strong current of racial resentment, xenophobia and extremist rhetoric in the Tea Party Movement that people within the Movement turn a blind-eye towards.

    Glenn Beck is certainly an important figure in the Tea Party:

    “This president, I think, has exposed himself as a guy, over and over and over again, who has a deep-seated hatred for white people or white culture.”

    Voicing Malia to Obama: “Daddy, why do you hate black people?”

    “When you see the effects of what they’re doing to the economy, remember these words: We will survive. No — we’ll do better than survive, we will thrive. As long as these people are not in control. They are taking you to a place to be slaughtered!”

    A majority of Republicans believe the ridiculous notion that Obama “sympathizes with the goals of Islamic fundamentalists who want to impose Islamic law around the world.” Consider that Mark Williams called Obama “an Indonesian Muslim turned welfare thug and a racist in chief,” yet remained the chairman of the Tea Party Express. It wasn’t even an issue within the Tea Party! So when Krauthammer or others ask “Racism? What racism?” he is being disingenuous.

  • Doc

    No, Zach, for most liberals, mere opposition to Democrat policies is enough for a conservative to get slapped with the racist label. This is why that label deserves to lose much of its stigma, which is unfortunate. True racists, be they Robert Byrd or Jeremiah Wright, deserve condemnation.

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    Doc: for most liberals, mere opposition to Democrat policies is enough for a conservative to get slapped with the racist label.

    That wasn’t the issue. The point was that people claim to see no racism or xenophobia in the Tea Party Movement, even though it is prevalent among its leadership. When the NAACP asked the Tea Party to distance itself from such rhetoric, they were attacked.

  • Doc

    The Tea Party movement has no true leadership. It actually is a grassroots movement, which may be why it confuses liberals, whose movements are manufactured and staged with big money and powerful interests behind them. The most obvious examples of racism at Tea Parties I’ve seen are the union and Democrat operative infiltrators trying to pose as Tea Party racists. Fortunately, these clowns are easily exposed. Flip phones are useful tools. Lefty posers are useless tools.

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    Glenn Beck organized the latest Tea Party rally. He habitually uses incendiary language. There is plenty of genuine xenophobia in the Tea Party Movement, in its leadership and its membership. It’s ubiquitous, yet for some reason, Tea Party Members can’t see it, even when it is pointed out to them.


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