For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. ---Ephesians 6:12

"The age of casual Catholicism is over; the age of heroic Catholicism has begun. We can no longer be Catholics by accident, but instead must be Catholics by CONVICTION." ---Fr. Terrence Henry TOR, Franciscan University of Steubenville

Saturday, December 25, 2010


The story you are about to see is true.  The names were not changed to protect the innocent until the show went to color in the next decade.  Or if they were changed, it wasn't mentioned.

This episode from the original black & white (as seen above in three videos) was refilmed with the exact same script and almost all the same actors in the late 1960's in color, also co-starring Barry Williams who later played Greg on The Brady Bunch.

It is, if I'm not mistaken, Dragnet's only Christmas show and was titled BIG LITTLE JESUS.

Isn't it sad that we have to go back to the 50's and 60's to find a show on TV that displays any reverence to God or to the Catholic Church?  I can hardly think of any today that don't portray Christians as odd-balls or portray priests as corrupt or perverse.  The Closer might be one, possibly.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas To All, And To All A Good Night!

I was invited to a friend's place this year to spend Christmas with him and his family in Chicago, but due to some mix-ups with my employer I wound up home in Pennsylvania instead late last night  Just as well since I am sick with bronchitis, which I believe is contagious.  The fact that it's contagious means I won't be going to the priests retirement center in our diocese to find an old retiree to hear my confession and grant me absolution.  They're about the only ones available after the 23rd, but the older guys don't handle bronchitis well.  That means no Communion.  But I can't really go to church knowing I'm sick and risk giving my illness to someone else, because old ladies and small children don't handle bronchitis well, either.  And this also makes doing volunteer work, ie, serving food for homeless people in a soup kitchen, out of the question.

So what am I doing for Christmas this year?  I could still do a number of things.  There are all those Clint Eastwood movies I could watch, or the Lord of the Rings trilogy, or Hogan's Heros reruns.  Perhaps a CSI marathon!  Or I could sit and stare at my Christmas tree and wonder..."why me?"

Nope.  I'll spend much of it staying focused on God and praying Liturgy of the Hours.  Here's the Hymn from today's Vespers:

Unto us a child is given,
Christ out Savior bring release;
Counselor, Eternal Father,
God made man, and Prince of Peace.

Born of Mary, gentle virgin,
By the Spirit of the Lord;
From eternal ages spoken:
This the mighty Father's Word.

Love and truth in him shall flower,
From his strength their vigor take.
Branches that are bare shall blossom;
Joy that slept begins to wake.

Praise the everlasting Father,
and the Lord, his only Son;
Praise them with the Holy Spirit, 
Perfect Trinity in One.

Although being by yourself at Christmas isn't as much fun as having friends and family around helping you celebrate, you are never really alone at Christmas when you have God in your life.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

O Mater Dei, Ora Pro Nobis Peccatoribus!

I've been listening to a lot of polyphony lately, and found this on YouTube.  Enjoy!

Oh Mother of God, pray for us sinners.

Friday, December 17, 2010

There is hope... real hope, not fade away.

Although I have been very busy NOT blogging, I couldn't let this one go by...  It's the latest of a long line of wonderfully creative videos presented by, and the timing couldn't be better.  As we are deep into Advent we should be very grateful for the accomplishments and turn of events in our favor this past year.

In particular the appointments of Raymond L. Burke as Cardinal, and the election of Archbishop Timothy Dolan as President of the USCCB are noteworthy.  And it doesn't end with the appointments.  These guys mean business in that they intend to not merely rest upon their laurels.  Check out this link HERE of Cardinal Burke's speech regarding CINO (Catholic In Name Only) universities in the US.

Hope springs eternal...

Saturday, December 4, 2010

To My Readers, Or To Whom It May Concern...

An explanation as to why I haven't been posting much lately is owed to the many readers who visit this blog, in spite of the fact most of them don't leave comments ;-}.  As for the few who do, I owe you as well.

For over a year I've gotten a nagging inclination, or perhaps...dare I say...a "calling" to a monastic life of prayerful reflection that appears to be growing steadily inside my soul.  For the past few months I've been trying very hard to discern whether or not I should, or even could "leave it all behind" and join a cloister somewhere.  There are an awful lot of them from which to choose:  Benedictine, Franciscan, Dominican, Augustinian, Cistercian, etc...  The list is almost endless.  Most of them have age requirements that I will never meet.  I'm 46 years old and climbing....or descending, whatever your point of view.  But a good number cut off at 50 or even 55.  A couple of them don't have any age limitations at all.

Last week I found a link at The Crescat, which led me to a site with a survey, that would measure my vocational aptitude.  I scored well.  And as a result I've heard from several Abbots via email, inviting me to investigate further and visit their monasteries.  So this is been the subject of my preoccupation of late.

On occasion I may blog about something...or not.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Story Of Jonah (Too Cute To Pass Up)

The story of Jonah from Corinth Baptist Church on Vimeo.

I see a career as a lector or reader of recorded books for this young, aspiring actress. Watch this and enjoy!  And don't miss out on the lessons of the story...

From via my friend, Paul.

Friday, November 12, 2010

A Must-Read From Ann Coulter

Ann Coulter is making a good case for repealing the 26th Amendment to the Constitution in her latest column, but I doubt it will ever come to fruition.  The next wave of young people might be conservative, IMHO, like they were for a short time during the Carter years.  All it takes is a really horrible democrat president to leave a bad taste in everyone's mouth...

While claiming "fair use," I am posting the entire column, as it is such a lovely read.  Can you tell I have a bit of a crush?  Here it is:

Jimmy Carter was such an abominable president we got Ronald Reagan, tax cuts, a booming economy and the destruction of the Soviet Union.

Two years of Bill Clinton and a Democratic Congress got us the first Republican Congress in half a century, followed by tax cuts, welfare reform and a booming economy –- all of which Clinton now claims credit for.

Obama's disastrous presidency has already produced Republican senators from Massachusetts, Wisconsin and Illinois; New Jersey's wonder-governor Chris Christie; and the largest House majority for Republicans since 1946.

We deserve more. Clinton only threatened to wreck the health care system; Obama actually did it. We must repeal the 26th Amendment.

Adopted in 1971 at the tail end of the Worst Generation's anti-war protests, the argument for allowing children to vote was that 18-year-olds could drink and be conscripted into the military, so they ought to be allowed to vote.

But 18-year-olds aren't allowed to drink anymore. We no longer have a draft. In fact, while repealing the 26th Amendment, we ought to add a separate right to vote for members of the military, irrespective of age.

As we have learned from ObamaCare, young people are not considered adults until age 26, at which point they are finally forced to get off their parents' health care plans. The old motto was "Old enough to fight, old enough to vote." The new motto is: "Not old enough to buy your own health insurance, not old enough to vote."

Eighteen- to 26-year-olds don't have property, spouses, children or massive tax bills. Most of them don't even have jobs because the president they felt so good about themselves for supporting wrecked the economy.

The meager tax young people paid for vehicle licensing fees on their cars threw them into such a blind rage that in 2003 they uncharacteristically voted to recall the Democratic governor of California, Gray Davis. Wait until they start making real money and realize they share a joint-checking account arrangement with the government! Literally wait. Then we'll let them vote.

Having absolutely no idea what makes their precious cars run, by the way, young voters are the most likely to oppose offshore drilling.

How about 10-year-olds? Why not give them the vote?

Then we'd have politicians wooing voters with offers of free Justin Bieber tickets instead of offers of a "sustainable planet" or whatever hokum the youth have swallowed hook, line and sinker from their teachers, pop culture idols and other authority figures. (Along with their approved-by-the-authorities "Question Authority" bumper stickers.)

Like 18-year-olds, the 10-year-olds would be sublimely unaware that they're the ones who will be footing the bill for all these "free" goodies, paying and paying until they die of old age.

Brain research in the last five years at Dartmouth and elsewhere has shown that human brains are not fully developed until age 25 and are particularly deficient in their frontal lobes, which control decision-making, rational thinking, judgment, the ability to plan ahead and to resist impulses.

Unfortunately, we didn't know that in 1971. Those of you who have made it to age 26 without dying in a stupid drinking game -- and I think congratulations are in order, by the way -- understand how insane it is to allow young people to vote.

It would almost be tolerable if everyone under the age of 30 just admitted they voted for Obama because someone said to them, "C'mon, it's really cool! Everyone's doing it!"

We trusted them, and now we know it was a mistake.

True, Reagan tied with Carter for the youth vote in 1980 and stole younger voters from Mondale in 1984, but other than that, young voters have consistently embarrassed themselves. Of course, back when Reagan was running for president, young voters consisted of the one slice of the population completely uninfected by the Worst Generation. Today's youth are the infantilized, pampered, bicycle-helmeted children of the Worst Generation.

They foisted this jug-eared, European socialist on us and now they must be punished. Voters aged 18 to 29 years old comprised nearly a fifth of the voting population in 2008 and they voted overwhelmingly for Obama, 66 percent to 31 percent.

And it only took 12 to 14 years of North Korean-style brainwashing to make them do it! At least their teachers haven't brainwashed them into burning books or ratting out their parents to the Stasi yet. (On the bright side, before teaching them book-burning, their professors would be forced to teach them what a book is.)

It would make more sense to give public school teachers and college professors 20 votes apiece than to allow their impressionable students to vote.

The Re-Education Camp Effect can be seen in how these slackers living at home on their parents' health insurance voted in the middle of the Republican tidal wave this year. Youths aged 18-29 voted for the Democrats by 16 points. But the kids aged 18-24 -- having just received an A in Professor Ward Churchill's college class on American Oppression -- voted for the Democrats by a whopping 19 points.

Young people voted for Obama as a fashion statement. One daughter of a friend of a friend of mine spent her whole college summer in 2008 working at a restaurant and then, with teary eyes, sent everything she made to the Obama campaign.

Luckily, she doesn't have to worry about paying for tuition, rent or food. Or property taxes, electric bills, plumbers and electricians. After being exploited by the left, she'll end up paying for it for the rest of her life, with interest.

Liberals fight tooth-and-nail to create an electorate disposed to vote Democratic by, for example, demanding that felons and illegal aliens be given the vote. But it's at least possible that illegal aliens and criminals pay taxes or have fully functioning frontal lobes.

Republicans ought to fight for their own electorate, which at a minimum ought to mean voters with fully functioning brains and the possibility of a tax bill. Not old enough to buy your own health insurance, not old enough to vote.

1130 Walnut, Kansas City, MO 64106

Monday, November 1, 2010

Our Blackness Is Showing...And It's About Time

Such an informative video!  Seriously, I thought Alan West was the only African-American running for Congress as a Republican this year, or certainly only two I'd heard of.  It's great to see Star Parker in the fight, and I hope she is given the opportunity to represent California in her district.

What a great crop of candidates!  Too bad I only just heard about them;  and no, I'm not living under a rock.  The MSM prefers to ignore such boat-rockers, those who seek to break the shackles of Democrat slavery, and therefore I am left ill-informed.  Oddly though, with all the conservative blogs I make the few moments available in my busy life to read, hardly any of them mentioned anyone else beyond Alan West running in Florida.  If the rest lose, perhaps we have ourselves to blame.

A big hat tip to my friend Paul, who got the video from Lucianne.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Video of Teachers Unions Gone Wild!!! WARNING---OBSCENE LANGUAGE BY TEACHERS

Yes, there are many examples of swearing in the video above, so know that you have been warned!  It's important to post this, though, because it conveys the importance of showing up on election day and actually voting.  

Teaching today is a risky business, and my sympathies go out to all those good teachers out there who have to put up with lots of crap from mouthy and violent children who haven't been parented properly.  But something needs to change here.  Watch if you dare.

BTW, a "hello" to all you Daily Kos readers!  Always nice to be linked to by the other side.   And those commenters are hysterical!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Archbishops Burke And Wuerl Promoted To Cardinal...Along With 22 Others

This morning it was announced that Pope Benedict XVI has promoted 20 archbishops, 1 bishop, 2 monsignori, and 1 coptic patriarch to the office of cardinal at a ceremony scheduled for November 20th.  Among those are two Americans:  Archbishop Wuerl of Washington DC and the previously posted Archbishop Raymond Burke, prelate of the Apostolic Signatura.

Congratulations to all of the new cardinals-designate, especially Archbishop Burke, whom I would very much like to see rise to the papacy some day.

Hat tip:  Lisa Graas who has the statement by Archbishop Burke.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Archbishop Burke Delivers A Very Frank And Bold Speech

Archbishop Burke spoke last week at the 5th World Prayer Congress for Life and did not mince words.  In fact, he never does.  And that's why he's one of my favorite Catholic leaders.  He is as orthodox as they come, and he is not afraid to remind the faithful and even the prelates in the US that politicians who publicly condone abortion should be denied Holy Communion (or make public repentance of their sin).

In this speech which can be seen above (and lasts over 60 minutes, but who's counting?) he criticizes progressive bishops for undermining, or at the very least - watering down, the Magisterial Teachings of the Church, in particular:  Humanae Vitae.

See the full story HERE, where you can also get a link to the PDF of the text of the speech.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Rabbi Shalom Lewis Brings Much Needed Moral Clarity To The War On Terror

I found excerpts of the following speech at Brutally Honest with the instructions to "pass it on," (though I needed no instructions to do that) and therefore did.  I've posted the whole speech that, though kind of lengthy, should be required reading for politicians, media elites, school teachers, and students.

You don't have to read the entire speech to get the gist of it, or to become enlightened by the facts.  But you will likely be so drawn into it by his sincerity and truthfulness, that you find yourself reading it in full.  I've highlighted the best parts in blue in case you are pressed for time, but please feel free to return later to finish.

The rabbi's name is Shalom Lewis, and the speech was made on the first day of Rosh Hashanah in Atlanta.

Ehr Kumt

Many years ago a Chasid used to travel from shtetl to shtetl selling holy books. On one occasion he came to a wealthy land owner and asked if he would like to purchase a book of Torah teachings. The banker agreed and not only purchased the book, but paid for it with a hundred ruble note. He then began to chat with the Chassid and offered him a cigar, taking one also for himself. The Chassid noticed that the banker proceeded to rip a page from the holy book he had just bought and holding it to the open flame on the stove, used the page to light his cigar. The Chassid said not a word but simply drew out from his pocket the 100 ruble note he had just received from the banker, held it over the stove as well and used it to light his cigar.

This simple, little tale reflects a profound divergence of values. Our sympathy clearly and instinctively is not with the banker but with the pious Chassid. None of us would come to the defense of the banker. None of us would claim moral supremacy for the banker. None of us would justify his boorish deed. As the sages of the Talmud would say - "Pshita - It is so obvious." Sadly though our planet is immersed in perversity where morality is not so manifest - where the book burner is a hero and the pious one, a villain.

I thought long and I thought hard on whether to deliver the sermon I am about to share. We all wish to bounce happily out of shul on the High Holidays, filled with warm fuzzies, ready to gobble up our brisket, our honey cakes and our kugel. We want to be shaken and stirred - but not too much. We want to be guilt-schlepped - but not too much. We want to be provoked but not too much. We want to be transformed but not too much.

I get it, but as a rabbi I have a compelling obligation, a responsibility to articulate what is in my heart and what I passionately believe must be said and must be heard. And so, I am guided not by what is easy to say but by what is painful to express. I am guided not by the frivolous but by the serious. I am guided not by delicacy but by urgency.

We are at war. We are at war with an enemy as savage, as voracious, as heartless as the Nazis but one wouldn't know it from our behavior. During WWII we didn't refer to storm troopers as freedom fighters. We didn't call the Gestapo, militants. We didn't see the attacks on our Merchant Marine as acts by rogue sailors. We did not justify the Nazis rise to power as our fault. We did not grovel before the Nazis, thumping our hearts and confessing to abusing and mistreating and humiliating the German people. We did not apologize for Dresden, nor for The Battle of the Bulge, nor for El Alamein, nor for D-Day.

Evil - ultimate, irreconcilable, evil threatened us and Roosevelt and Churchill had moral clarity and an exquisite understanding of what was at stake. It was not just the Sudetenland, not just Tubruk, not just Vienna, not just Casablanca. It was the entire planet. Read history and be shocked at how frighteningly close Hitler came to creating a Pax Germana on every continent.

Not all Germans were Nazis - most were decent, most were revolted by the Third Reich, most were good citizens hoisting a beer, earning a living and tucking in their children at night. But, too many looked away, too many cried out in lame defense - I didn't know." Too many were silent. Guilt absolutely falls upon those who committed the atrocities, but responsibility and guilt falls upon those who did nothing as well. Fault was not just with the goose steppers but with those who pulled the curtains shut, said and did nothing.

In WWII we won because we got it. We understood who the enemy was and we knew that the end had to be unconditional and absolute. We did not stumble around worrying about offending the Nazis. We did not measure every word so as not to upset our foe. We built planes and tanks and battleships and went to war to win….. to rid the world of malevolence.

We are at war… yet too many stubbornly and foolishly don't put the pieces together and refuse to identify the evil doers. We are circumspect and disgracefully politically correct.

Let me mince no words in saying that from Fort Hood to Bali, from Times Square to London, from Madrid to Mumbai, from 9/11 to Gaza, the murderers, the barbarians are radical Islamists.

To camouflage their identity is sedition. To excuse their deeds is contemptible. To mask their intentions is unconscionable.

A few years ago I visited Lithuania on a Jewish genealogical tour. It was a stunning journey and a very personal, spiritual pilgrimage. When we visited Kovno we davened Maariv at the only remaining shul in the city. Before the war there were thirty-seven shuls for 38,000 Jews. Now only one, a shrinking, gray congregation. We made minyon for the handful of aged worshippers in the Choral Synagogue, a once majestic, jewel in Kovno.

After my return home I visited Cherry Hill for Shabbos. At the oneg an elderly family friend, Joe Magun, came over to me.

"Shalom," he said. "Your abba told me you just came back from Lithuania." "Yes," I replied. "It was quite a powerful experience." "Did you visit the Choral Synagogue in Kovno? The one with the big arch in the courtyard?" "Yes, I did. In fact, we helped them make minyon." His eyes opened wide in joy at our shared memory. For a moment he gazed into the distance and then, he returned. "Shalom, I grew up only a few feet away from the arch. The Choral Synagogue was where I davened as a child."

He paused for a moment and once again was lost in the past. His smile faded. Pain filled his wrinkled face. "I remember one Shabbos in 1938 when Vladimir Jabotinsky came to the shul" (Jabotinsky was Menachim Begin's mentor - he was a fiery orator, an unflinching Zionist radical, whose politics were to the far right.) Joe continued "When Jabotinsky came, he delivered the drash on Shabbos morning and I can still hear his words burning in my ears. He climbed up to the shtender, stared at us from the bima, glared at us with eyes full of fire and cried out. 'EHR KUMT. YIDN FARLAWST AYER SHTETL - He's coming. Jews abandon your city.'."

We thought we were safe in Lithuania from the Nazis, from Hitler. We had lived there, thrived for a thousand years but Jabotinsky was right -- his warning prophetic. We got out but most did not."

We are not in Lithuania. It is not the 1930s. There is no Luftwaffe overhead. No U-boats off the coast of long Island. No Panzer divisions on our borders. But make no mistake; we are under attack - our values, our tolerance, our freedom, our virtue, our land.

Now before some folks roll their eyes and glance at their watches let me state emphatically, unmistakably - I have no pathology of hate, nor am I a manic Paul Revere, galloping through the countryside. I am not a pessimist, nor prone to panic attacks. I am a lover of humanity, all humanity. Whether they worship in a synagogue, a church, a mosque, a temple or don't worship at all. I have no bone of bigotry in my body, but what I do have is hatred for those who hate, intolerance for those who are intolerant, and a guiltless, unstoppable obsession to see evil eradicated.

Today the enemy is radical Islam but it must be said sadly and reluctantly that there are unwitting, co-conspirators who strengthen the hands of the evil doers. Let me state that the overwhelming number of Muslims are good Muslims, fine human beings who want nothing more than a Jeep Cherokee in their driveway, a flat screen TV on their wall and a good education for their children, but these good Muslims have an obligation to destiny, to decency that thus far for the most part they have avoided. The Kulturkampf is not only external but internal as well. The good Muslims must sponsor rallies in Times Square, in Trafalgar Square, in the UN Plaza, on the Champs Elysee, in Mecca condemning terrorism, denouncing unequivocally the slaughter of the innocent. Thus far, they have not. The good Muslims must place ads in the NY Times. They must buy time on network TV, on cable stations, in the Jerusalem Post, in Le Monde, in Al Watan, on Al Jazeena condemning terrorism, denouncing unequivocally the slaughter of the innocent - thus far, they have not. Their silence allows the vicious to tarnish Islam and define it.

Brutal acts of commission and yawning acts of omission both strengthen the hand of the devil.

I recall a conversation with my father shortly before he died that helped me understand how perilous and how broken is our world; that we are living on the narrow seam of civilization and moral oblivion. Knowing he had little time left he shared the following - "Shal. I am ready to leave this earth. Sure I'd like to live a little longer, see a few more sunrises, but truthfully, I've had it. I'm done. Finished. I hope the Good Lord takes me soon because I am unable to live in this world knowing what it has become."

This startling admission of moral exhaustion from a man who witnessed and lived through the Depression, the Holocaust, WWII, Communist Triumphalism, McCarthyism, Strontium 90 and polio. - Yet his twilight observation was - "The worst is yet to come." And he wanted out.

I share my father's angst and fear that too many do not see the authentic, existential threat we face nor confront the source of our peril. We must wake up and smell the hookah.

"Lighten up, Lewis. Take a chill pill, some of you are quietly thinking. You're sounding like Glen Beck. It's not that bad. It's not that real." But I am here to tell you - "It is." Ask the member of our shul whose sister was vaporized in the Twin Towers and identified finally by her charred teeth, if this is real or not. Ask the members of our shul who fled a bus in downtown Paris, fearing for their safety from a gang of Muslim thugs, if this is an exaggeration. Ask the member of our shul whose son tracks Arab terrorist infiltrators who target - pizza parlors, nursery schools, Pesach seders, city buses and play grounds, if this is dramatic, paranoid hyperbole.

Ask them, ask all of them - ask the American GI's we sit next to on planes who are here for a brief respite while we fly off on our Delta vacation package. Ask them if it's bad. Ask them if it's real.

Did anyone imagine in the 1920's what Europe would look like in the 1940's. Did anyone presume to know in the coffee houses of Berlin or in the opera halls of Vienna that genocide would soon become the celebrated culture? Did anyone think that a goofy-looking painter named Shickelgruber would go from the beer halls of Munich and jail, to the Reichstag as Feuhrer in less than a decade? Did Jews pack their bags and leave Warsaw, Vilna, Athens, Paris, Bialystok, Minsk, knowing that soon their new address would be Treblinka, Sobibor, Dachau and Auschwitz?

The sages teach - "Aizehu chacham - haroeh et hanolad - Who is a wise person - he who sees into the future." We dare not wallow in complacency, in a misguided tolerance and naïve sense of security.

We must be diligent students of history and not sit in ash cloth at the waters of Babylon weeping. We cannot be hypnotized by eloquent-sounding rhetoric that soothes our heart but endangers our soul. We cannot be lulled into inaction for fear of offending the offenders. Radical Islam is the scourge and this must be cried out from every mountain top. From sea to shining sea, we must stand tall, prideful of our stunning decency and moral resilience. Immediately after 9/11 how many mosques were destroyed in America? None. After 9/11, how many Muslims were killed in America? None. After 9/11, how many anti-Muslim rallies were held in America? None. And yet, we apologize. We grovel. We beg forgiveness.

The mystifying litany of our foolishness continues. Should there be a shul in Hebron on the site where Baruch Goldstein gunned down twenty-seven Arabs at noonday prayers? Should there be a museum praising the U.S. Calvary on the site of Wounded Knee? Should there be a German cultural center in Auschwitz? Should a church be built in the Syrian town of Ma'arra where Crusaders slaughtered over 100,000 Muslims? Should there be a thirteen story mosque and Islamic Center only a few steps from Ground Zero.?

Despite all the rhetoric, the essence of the matter can be distilled quite easily. The Muslim community has the absolute, constitutional right to build their building wherever they wish. I don't buy the argument - "When we can build a church or a synagogue in Mecca they can build a mosque here." America is greater than Saudi Arabia. And New York is greater than Mecca. Democracy and freedom must prevail.

Can they build? Certainly. May they build? Certainly. But should they build at that site? No -- but that decision must come from them, not from us. Sensitivity, compassion cannot be measured in feet or yards or in blocks. One either feels the pain of others and cares, or does not.

If those behind this project are good, peace-loving, sincere, tolerant Muslims, as they claim, then they should know better, rip up the zoning permits and build elsewhere.

Believe it or not, I am a dues-paying, card carrying member of the ACLU, yet from start of finish, I find this sorry episode disturbing to say the least.

William Burroughs, the novelist and poet, in a wry moment wrote - "After one look at this planet, any visitor from outer space would say - "I want to see the manager."

Let us understand that the radical Islamist assaults all over the globe are but skirmishes, fire fights, and vicious decoys. Christ and the anti-Christ. Gog U'Magog. The Sons of Light and the Sons of Darkness; the bloody collision between civilization and depravity is on the border between Lebanon and Israel. It is on the Gaza Coast and in the Judean Hills of the West Bank. It is on the sandy beaches of Tel Aviv and on the cobblestoned mall of Ben Yehuda Street. It is in the underground schools of Sderot and on the bullet-proofed inner-city buses. It is in every school yard, hospital, nursery, classroom, park, theater - in every place of innocence and purity.

Israel is the laboratory - the test market. Every death, every explosion, every grisly encounter is not a random, bloody orgy. It is a calculated, strategic probe into the heart, guts and soul of the West.

In the Six Day War, Israel was the proxy of Western values and strategy while the Arab alliance was the proxy of Eastern, Soviet values and strategy. Today too, it is a confrontation of proxies, but the stakes are greater than East Jerusalem and the West Bank. Israel in her struggle represents the civilized world, while Hamas, Hezbollah, Al Queda, Iran, Islamic Jihad, represent the world of psychopathic, loathesome evil.

As Israel, imperfect as she is, resists the onslaught, many in the Western World have lost their way displaying not admiration, not sympathy, not understanding, for Israel's galling plight, but downright hostility and contempt. Without moral clarity, we are doomed because Israel's galling plight ultimately will be ours. Hanna Arendt in her classic Origins of Totalitarianism accurately portrays the first target of tyranny as the Jew. We are the trial balloon. The canary in the coal mine. If the Jew/Israel is permitted to bleed with nary a protest from "good guys" then tyranny snickers and pushes forward with its agenda.

Moral confusion is a deadly weakness and it has reached epic proportions in the West; from the Oval Office to the UN, from the BBC to Reuters to MSNBC, from the New York Times to Le Monde, from university campuses to British teachers unions, from the International Red Cross to Amnesty International, from Goldstone to Elvis Costello, from the Presbyterian Church to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

There is a message sent and consequences when our president visits Turkey and Egypt and Saudi Arabia, and not Israel.

There is a message sent and consequences when free speech on campus is only for those championing Palestinian rights.

There is a message sent and consequences when the media deliberately doctors and edits film clips to demonize Israel.

There is a message sent and consequences when the UN blasts Israel relentlessly, effectively ignoring Iran, Sudan, Venezuela, North Korea, China and other noxious states.

There is a message sent and consequences when liberal churches are motivated by Liberation Theology, not historical accuracy.

There is a message sent and consequences when murderers and terrorists are defended by the obscenely transparent "one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter."

John Milton warned, "Hypocrisy is the only evil that walks invisible."

A few days after the Gaza blockade incident in the spring, a congregant happened past my office, glanced in and asked in a friendly tone

-"Rabbi. How're y' doing."

I looked up, sort of smiled and replied - "I've had better days."

"What's the matter? Is there anything I can do to cheer you up?" he inquired.

"Thank you for the offer but I'm just bummed out today and I showed him a newspaper article I was reading.

"Madrid gay pride parade bans Israeli group over Gaza Ship Raid." I explained to my visitor - "The Israeli gay pride contingent from Tel Aviv was not allowed to participate in the Spanish gay pride parade because the mayor of Tel Aviv did not apologize for the raid by the Israeli military."

The only country in the entire Middle East where gay rights exist, is Israel. The only country in the entire Middle East where there is a gay pride parade, is Israel. The only country in the Middle East that has gay neighborhoods and gay bars, is Israel.

Gays in the Gaza would be strung up, executed by Hamas if they came out and yet Israel is vilified and ostracized. Disinvited to the parade.

Looking for logic?

Looking for reason?

Looking for sanity?

Kafka on his darkest, gloomiest day could not keep up with this bizarre spectacle and we "useful idiots" pander and fawn over cutthroats, sinking deeper and deeper into moral decay, as the enemy laughs all the way to the West Bank and beyond.

It is exhausting and dispiriting. We live in an age that is redefining righteousness where those with moral clarity are an endangered, beleaguered specie.

Isaiah warned us thousands of years ago - "Oye Lehem Sheh-Korim Layome, Laila v'Laila, yome - Woe to them who call the day, night and the night, day." We live on a planet that is both Chelm and Sodom. It is a frightening and maddening place to be.

How do we convince the world and many of our own, that this is not just anti-Semitism, that this is not just anti-Zionism but a full throttled attack by unholy, radical Islamists on everything that is morally precious to us?

How do we convince the world and many of our own that conciliation is not an option, that compromise is not a choice?

Everything we are. Everything we believe. Everything we treasure, is at risk.

The threat is so unbelievably clear and the enemy so unbelievably ruthless how anyone in their right mind doesn't get it is baffling. Let's try an analogy. If someone contracted a life-threatening infection and we not only scolded them for using antibiotics but insisted that the bacteria had a right to infect their body and that perhaps, if we gave the invading infection an arm and a few toes, the bacteria would be satisfied and stop spreading

Anyone buy that medical advice? Well, folks, that's our approach to the radical Islamist bacteria. It is amoral, has no conscience and will spread unless it is eradicated. - There is no negotiating. Appeasement is death.

I was no great fan of George Bush - didn't vote for him. (By the way, I'm still a registered Democrat.) I disagreed with many of his policies but one thing he had right. His moral clarity was flawless when it came to the War on Terror, the War on Radical Islamist Terror. There was no middle ground - either you were friend or foe. There was no place in Bush's world for a Switzerland. He knew that this competition was not Toyota against G.M., not the Iphone against the Droid, not the Braves against the Phillies, but a deadly serious war, winner take all. Blink and you lose. Underestimate, and you get crushed.

I know that there are those sitting here today who have turned me off. But I also know that many turned off their rabbis seventy five years ago in Warsaw, Riga, Berlin, Amsterdam, Cracow, Vilna. I get no satisfaction from that knowledge, only a bitter sense that there is nothing new under the sun.

Enough rhetoric - how about a little "show and tell?" A few weeks ago on the cover of Time magazine was a horrific picture with a horrific story. The photo was of an eighteen year old Afghani woman, Bibi Aisha, who fled her abusive husband and his abusive family. Days later the Taliban found her and dragged her to a mountain clearing where she was found guilty of violating Sharia Law. Her punishment was immediate. She was pinned to the ground by four men while her husband sliced off her ears, and then he cut off her nose.

That is the enemy (show enlarged copy of magazine cover.)

If nothing else stirs us. If nothing else convinces us, let Bibi Aisha's mutilated face be the face of Islamic radicalism. Let her face shake up even the most complacent and naïve among us. In the holy crusade against this ultimate evil, pictures of Bibi Aisha's disfigurement should be displayed on billboards, along every highway from Route 66 to the Autobahn, to the Transarabian Highway. Her picture should be posted on every lobby wall from Tokyo to Stockholm to Rio. On every network, at every commercial break, Bibi Aisha's face should appear with the caption - "Radical Islamic savages did this." And underneath - "This ad was approved by Hamas, by Hezbollah, by Taliban, by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, by Islamic Jihad, by Fatah al Islam, by Magar Nodal Hassan, by Richard Reid, by Ahmanijad, by Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, by Osama bin Laden, by Edward Said, by The Muslim Brotherhood, by Al Queda, by CAIR."

"The moral sentiment is the drop that balances the sea" said Ralph Waldo Emerson. Today, my friends, the sea is woefully out of balance and we could easily drown in our moral myopia and worship of political correctness.

We peer up into the heavens sending probes to distant galaxies. We peer down into quarks discovering particles that would astonish Einstein. We create computers that rival the mind, technologies that surpass science fiction. What we imagine, with astounding rapidity, becomes real. If we dream it, it does, indeed, come. And yet, we are at a critical point in the history of this planet that could send us back into the cave, to a culture that would make the Neanderthal blush with shame.

Our parents and grandparents saw the swastika and recoiled, understood the threat and destroyed the Nazis. We see the banner of Radical Islam and can do no less.

A rabbi was once asked by his students….
"Rebbi. Why are your sermons so stern?" Replied the rabbi, "If a house is on fire and we chose not to wake up our children, for fear of disturbing their sleep, would that be love? Kinderlach, 'di hoyz brent.' Children our house is on fire and I must arouse you from your slumber."

During WWII and the Holocaust was it business as usual for priests, ministers, rabbis? Did they deliver benign homilies and lovely sermons as Europe fell, as the Pacific fell, as North Africa fell, as the Mideast and South America tottered, as England bled? Did they ignore the demonic juggernaut and the foul breath of evil? They did not. There was clarity, courage, vision, determination, sacrifice, and we were victorious. Today it must be our finest hour as well. We dare not retreat into the banality of our routines, glance at headlines and presume that the good guys will prevail.

Democracies don't always win.
Tyrannies don't always lose.

My friends - the world is on fire and we must awake from our slumber. "EHR KUMT."

Monday, October 4, 2010

Those Crazy Anti-Lifers. May God Convert Them All!

Things are starting to lighten up some around here, so now I can touch on a couple of stories that caught my attention:

First, from late last week a story HERE (<--click there) about a Brazilian supermodel who was pressured by a US modeling agency to have an abortion when she got pregnant her first time.  Fortunately, the better angels of her nature prevailed, and she had the child.... and another one since.  Her modeling career has NOT suffered!  God bless her and all those who resist such fear-inspired temptations.

Abortionist Boyle
Second, in Charleston, SC, an out of state (TN) abortionist pointed a loaded gun at several 40-Days-For-Life participants who were ministering outside the largest abortuary in SC, as he exited his car.  Click HERE for the full story,

Fortunately there was no accidental or intentional discharge of the firearm as the visiting abortionist, Gary Boyle, made his way inside the abortion mill.  Police were summoned in short order.  Boyle posted his $25,000 bond on Saturday.

This is not the first brush with authorities for Boyle on the issue of abortion.  Back in the 1990's he was caught operating an abortion mill without the required "certificate of need."

What kind of human being devotes his life to killing unborn children, legally or not?  I spent a few moments (life wasted) looking into the eyes of that individual's picture only to see fear and loathing.  I will continue to pray for his conversion and for the conversion of those like him.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Last Best Hope

This election season has elicited feelings of great passion from several artistic people who have devoted their energies to fighting for the cause.  Here's another great video.  This one found on Brutally Honest.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Gangsta Government

An enjoyable rap video with a great message found on Lucianne.

It's Mourning In America

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Jon McNaughton Paints A Thousand Words ---The Forgotten Man

Sorry the blog has been so quiet lately, but personal issues trump posting at times.  I should be very active during the home stretch of election season.  Keep watching.

This video above was sent to me from my friend, Paul, a retired lawyer and unsung conservative warrior.  The narration is done by the artist and painter, Jon McNaughton, who explains his art and why he wants the Dems defeated in November.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

New Video: THE DREAM 2010

It's best to watch this video on the large screen.  Click on the right corner of the video window where the arrows are to let this one fill your screen, then sit back and get goosebumps.  It has to be one of the best motivating videos has produced so far, and that says a lot as they are all excellent productions.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Ilario Pantano's Speech At Rally Against Ground Zero Mosque

This man is running for Congress in North Carolina.  I witnessed this speech in person and wish him much success in his endeavors.

The speech is electrifying...once you get past the clapping.  He has tons of courage and conviction, no doubt from his years of active service in the US Marines.  What a great president he could make one day...  The future is looking brighter.

I figured I should include this video below as well, so everyone has a better understanding of who this man is. 

Sunday, September 12, 2010

RALLY AGAINST THE GROUND ZERO MOSQUE --> A Success With 40K In Attendance!

Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs
The crowd at the Rally Against The Ground Zero Mosque was estimated to be around 40,000, and it was, by my own account, a very lively 40,000.  It was not an angry, restless crowd like the one a few blocks to the East, which spewed lies and hatred, but a very focused and determined group of people with full knowledge of why the Ground Zero Mosque should not stand.  I am proud to say I was part of this group of 40K, and that I raised my flags high and cheered on an excellent group of speakers.

There were people I never heard of who gave enthusiastic, empassioned speeches intermingled with great speeches from familiar faces in person and on screen.  Mike Gallagher (in person) held little back and said it wonderfully straight, which is what the crowd wanted to hear.  John Bolton was also very effective on screen.

As I stated, there were some surprises.  Rosa Leonetti was a family member of one killed in the attack on 9-11.

Another standout was Congressional candidate, Ilario Pantano of Wilmington, NC, who had everyone's attention with a speaking style that cannot miss.  I've heard few politicians speak with such conviction.  The media will hate him, of course, for his military career and conservatism.  But we will see more of this man, especially after he is elected, I have no doubt.  And after that, I see him going places.

Geert Wilders, the Dutch MP, gave an excellent speech that brought us all back to that terrible day and put it all into perspective.  My favorite part is this:

"Among those lost were people from 55 nations, people of every religion and every persuasion. No place on earth had a more multi-ethnic, multi-racial, and multi-lingual workforce than New York’s proud towers.

That is exactly why they were targeted. They constituted an insult to those who hold that there can be no peaceful cooperation among people and nations without submission to Sharia; to those who wish to impose the legal system of Islam on the rest of us.

But New York and Sharia are incompatible. New York stands for freedom, openness and tolerance.

New York’s Mayor recently said that New York is “rooted in Dutch tolerance.” Those are true words. New York is not intolerant. How can it be? New York is open to the world.

Suppose New York were intolerant. Suppose it only allowed people of one persuasion within its walls.

Then it would be like Mecca, a city without freedom.

Whatever your religion, persuasion or gender is, in New York you will find a home. In Mecca, if your religion isn’t Islam, you are not welcome."

Urban Infidel was there...somewhere near the stage, and has a full report.  Donald Douglas of American Power flew in from California to be there as well, and gave a very complete photo essay worth checking out.  Pam was there, too, on stage along with Robert Spencer.  Just heard from El Marco who has a wonderful collection of pics.  For my trip to Ground Zero (more pictures), click HERE.

Some more photos from the day....  As before, click on them if you want to see them LARGER.

Nations united
40,000 stretched back a few blocks

Dutch MP, Geert Wilders

Congressional candidate, Ilario Pantano

More of the 40K

Radio talk show host, Michael Gallagher

A very brave lady displaying her sign to those wacko's a few blocks down...

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The Trip To Ground Zero

WTC cross from Ground Zero Rubble now at St. Peter's Church
Hoping this doesn't sound too self-indulgent, I'd like to first relate my trip to Ground Zero today and share some photos before posting on the RALLY AGAINST the Ground Zero Mosque (sometime tomorrow).  My intent is to encourage others to make the same pilgrimage to Ground Zero without feeling daunted by traveling to New York City.

I started from home (in the Harrisburg, PA area) at 4:30am in my fancy rental car (my own car has a slow leaking rear left tire I've put off fixing).  The rental is a racy, black Dodge Charger which turns heads and makes me feel like Bill Hickman (chasing and then being chased by Steve McQueen) but only cost me less than $25 per day.  I arrived at my commute point in Carteret, NJ known as the Shop Rite grocery store.  They could have towed me, so don't do this!  I did it to walk a half block to the bus stop to pick up the #116 NJ Transit bus  to take to the Port Authority Bus Terminal located a block or two from Times Square.  But I came realize I could have driven through the Lincoln Tunnel bearing left and then taking the exit ramp to the right to park the car at the same place the bus was heading (Port Authority Bus Terminal).  Lesson learned at little cost.  Lucky me.

Then things got easy, travel-wise.  From the Port Authority you go downstairs to the subway and take the 'E' train straight to Ground Zero (WTC).  It's the last stop, so you can't miss it.  And when you climb the stairs you are there.  I climbed the stairs and met with a thick crowd of people, and made a short walk to  Ground Zero in time to hear names being read.  Unless you somehow acquire a press-pass you won't get in where the families are, holding their framed pictures of loved-ones.  They deserve their intimacy together without the general public crowding them.  Two years ago I sat with the press and it was horribly sad to watch the relatives of the departed and to hear the names of the victims being read aloud.

While I was diverted elsewhere, I realized that I was missing a camera battery and the other was running low, and that Sony didn't make the batteries for my 5 year old camera anymore, I did a quick check in nearby camera stores.  No one had them, or the memory stick that is also obsolete... until I stopped by J&R Music World, Computer World, Camera World, etc... mega store with cafeteria on mez level (with electrical outlets available to customers).  They had the memory stick adaptor and elusive batteries.  Hence the plug from me.  Now I'm in business.  More photos taken here and there since the Rally wasn't until 2pm.

Stopped by St. Peter's Church, the home of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton's conversion to the Catholic Church.  Met Father Dave, nice man, heard my confession, gave me absolution in the corner by the candles.  Beautiful church inside and out.  See photos.

Later when I searched for the Rally AGAINST the mosque, the police kept pointing me toward the pro-mosque rally, saying that it would end at 2pm and ours would start at the same location.  They all seemed to parrot the same story, so I hung around listening to a lot of hate speech from crazy, fringe lunatics, who seemed to believe that the rest of us are racist and don't believe in freedom.  When I asked them how Iran treats homosexuals, they preferred to change the subject.  It's so awful how these nut-jobs stain such a sad occasion with their antics.  But they seem to know of no other way to express their fear and loathing of the attacks on 9-11 than to turn on the establishment they counted on to protect them.

At 2:30 I asked a police woman when our rally would start and she said that our side got discouraged and left!  She must have remembered she was on Bloomberg's dole.  Then another policeman told me it was a few blocks west on Park St.  And there it was....(to be continued tomorrow...).

The hate-filled lunacy of the other side...
Not to mention the gross hypocrisy...
To view my jumbled pictures LARGER, 'click' on them.
St. Peter's Church interior

Mennonites sing every year at Ground Zero
NYPD riding crotch-rockets
Thinks 9-11 was an "inside job"
Praying Muslim...notice no one impedes him.  He is free to pray.
Freedom Tower under construction

Monday, September 6, 2010

"America Rising" Is Making The Rounds

This is the political ad everyone is talking about.  It's been out since January, and its popularity has ebbed and flowed at times, but keeps getting stronger. 

WARNING:  An obscene gesture appears during viewing (flipping the bird by Sen. Harry Reid D-NV).

Hat tips to several, including Saving Common Sense and Paul Gleeson via American Thinker.

Friday, September 3, 2010

7 Quick Takes On A Friday, (9-3-10)

Once again it's Friday and I am taking part in 7 Quick Takes, hosted by Conversion Diary, in which seven personal items, thoughts, or observations, that are hopefully interesting, are shared by me with all of you. 
  1. I was sitting in a truck stop lounge TV room, trying to unwind from a long day's driving, when an old episode of CSI Miami started.  Someone told me it was from the first season, which is something I wouldn't have known, not having seen the show much at all.  I don't own a TV.  During most of that episode it appeared that the evidence was strongly suggesting that a Catholic priest was suspected of molesting a teenage altar boy, when in fact (we find out at the very end) that his mother killed his father, the boy then told the priest who planned to go to the authorities.  The mother then killed the priest, but first blamed the priest for knowing that her husband was abusing her and still giving him Communion every Sunday.  I simply wonder if Jerry Bruckheimer, the producer of this and other CSI shows, has it in for the Catholic Church.

  2. I've decided that rather than have my sensibilities attacked at every opportunity, I would forsake TV for already run, previously successful, tried, tested and true TV shows already on Dragnet, for instance.  There is nothing quite like watching Jack Webb and Harry Morgan argue with hippies about personal responsibility, property rights, and drug laws.  THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT!  Not only that but the older, more gritty version of Dragnet in black & white is also available on DVD here and there, anyway.  It's funny to see some of the same extras from the show in the late '60's in their younger days in B&W in the'50's
  3. Apple makes a very sturdy phone, able to withstand great punishment, and even drowning.  Yes, I mean the iPhone!  In a scene reminiscent of an old Timex commercial, my cat, Buster, kicked my iPhone off the edge of my truck's sleeper bunk bed (yes, I left it there) into his water dish below.  It floated half submerged for around 86 miles of driving through North Carolina before I began to wonder where I'd left it.  I pulled over and went pale when I saw it floating face down.  When I picked it up I noticed water beneath the glass screen keypad.  After much shaking of the phone I made sure it was switched off, laid it face down on a towel, and waited impatiently for a whole day.  The next morning I switched it on and it functioned like new (once I recharged it).
  4. On September 11th I will be at Ground Zero in the morning for any commemoration that might be planned, and then to Park & Broadway for the rally against the Ground Zero Mosque at 2pm.  The last time I was at Ground Zero, I acquired a press pass for the '08 commemoration  (by showing my blog which has my real name, and showing my driver's license, and also doing  a bit of begging) and sat in full view of the podium where I took lots of pictures.   The rest of the public had no view whatsoever due to trees and grandstands, so I wonder how likely I'll be  getting inside this year.
  5. In a week or two I'll have to go back to the Dr.'s office (per my employer) to get another official reading of my blood pressure via industrialized medicine.  I went off the blood pressure meds last October and have kept it down naturally by walking and eating right.  I have added apples to my diet for the last six months after not being able to eat them for the previous three and one half years without my guts cramping up (resulting in a mad dash to the men's room).  My gall bladder was removed in October '06, which had an adverse effect on my digestive system.  I couldn't eat any kind of fruit after that...until six months ago.  Go figure.  The apples are helping the BP a lot.
  6. I got an email yesterday from Lila Rose asking for emergency donations to Live Action.  Seems like a worthy cause since they're pro-life, and they've been exposing the mischief of Planned Parenthood all over the country via hidden camera interviews.  The girl has guts, no doubt.
  7. The Mother Teresa stamp will be unveiled by the US Postal Service on Sunday at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington DC.  Seems there were actually some groups that had a problem with the post office issuing such an honor to a religious person.  But over 146,000 people signed the petition in support of the stamp at  The stamp goes on sale Tuesday (after Labor Day) at your local post office.