Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Father Romano Guardini was born in Italy in 1885 and lived and died in Germany. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict, was born in Germany in 1927 and has lived in Rome since 1981. There are many similarities in their approach to reality and Cardinal Ratzinger wrote “…we are taught by Guardini, the essence of Christianity is not an idea, not a system of thought, not a plan of action. The essence of Christianity is a Person: Jesus Christ himself.” This thought is echoed in Pope Benedict’s writings. Guardini’s response to the failure of liberalism was valuable and he was able identify dangers to Europe brought about by its philosophical and cultural collapse. Guardini identified a way forward and his ideas deeply influenced a young 20 year old student in Freising, Joseph Ratzinger. This encounter was important as both have made inestimable contributions to the Church.
See Also: Pope Benedict has a Father: Guardini & A Decisive Encounter
Interviewed in Newsweek
For a good fisking of this interview, see Know-Nothings by Christopher Johnson.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
See Fr. Giussani’s Teaching: Introduction to Reality in Its Totality
The Risk of Educating: An Address by Christopher Bacich
Friday, October 23, 2009
Thursday, October 22, 2009
We are in the midst of a large social engineering project that is working to destroy and remake our conceptions of the person. The popular culture is unanimous in its support for same-sex unions and a philosophy based on a reduced conception of the person is gaining support. As Catholics, we have to admit that the civilization is moving against us. The political elite seeking to create a culture open to homosexual unions is doing something that is “outside of the whole moral history of humanity. It is not a question of discrimination, but rather a question of what is a human person insofar as man and woman. We are facing a dissolution of the image of the human being, with consequences which can be extremely grave" (Cardinal Ratzinger, Rome, May 14th, 2004; ZENIT). This cultural reform steps outside all human history and will leave destruction in its wake as the family, person, and the entire human community is changed in a dramatic way. The ultimate goal is to destroy humanity and re-engineer the person without a reference to God. This requires thought control and a grave limitation on free speech. We are literally facing a situation the Italian communist Gramsci described when he defined the concept of cultural hegemony. Social engineers are creating a culture where all opposition voices are extinguished and a new philosophy and controlled consensus emerge.
In The End of the Modern World, Guardini observed:
“The modern state shares the characteristics just described. It too is losing its organic structure, becoming more and more a complex of all-controlling functions. In it the human being steps back, the apparatus forward. Constantly improved techniques of stock-taking, man-power survey, and bureaucratic management—to put it brutally, increasingly effective social engineering—tend to treat people much as the machine treats the raw materials fed into it. From the standpoint of the bureaucracy in charge, any resistance on the part of those mistreated is equivalent to revolt, which must be crushed with ever more refined techniques and greater stringency." [162-3]
The danger to the Church is that we now find ourselves on the side of those who oppose the cultural elite and the bureaucrats. If Guardini is right, this means that there will be a movement against us. We must prepare for this.
Fr Dwight Longenecker on how the evil one spreads lies
67 Year-Old Grandma Interrogated and Threatened by Police over Gay Pride Complaint Video
The 'Two Step' of the New Censors. A Threat to Catholics?
President Obama: Homosexual Unions Equivalent to Marriage
European Union Will Soon Outlaw Criticism of Islam and Homosexuality
Children in UK taken from Family for 'Obesity Fears'
The comments following the article reinforce the bishop's reason for this composition .
See also Anne de Gaulle
Sunday, October 18, 2009
"One of the effects of modern liberal Protestantism has been gradually to turn religion into poetry and therapy, to make truth vaguer and vaguer and more and more relative, to banish intellectual distinctions, to depend on feeling instead of thought, and gradually to come to believe that God has no power, that he cannot communicate with us, cannot reveal himself to us, indeed has not done so, and that religion is our own sweet invention."
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Outsourcing Is High Tech's Subprime-Mortgage Fiasco by Robert H. Hayes, The U.S. Is Outsourcing Away Its Competitive Edge by Gary P. Pisano, and The U.S. Can't Manufacture the Kindle and That's a Problem by Willy C. Shih.
Friday, October 16, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
The Economist is published in the UK and is a willing participant in the marketing of the culture of death. Life is to be discarded if it interferes with economic efficiency. To the extent that we have accepted abortion, our culture endorses this world view. Our culture looks down on those who choose to have large families and find themselves struggling with poverty. It is considered virtuous to be selfish and have smaller families so that more stuff can be consumed. Culturally, we have integrated this economic worldview that subverts everything in our civilization to efficiency and selfishness. Adam Smith in A Theory of Moral Sentiments observes that maximizing wealth cannot produce happiness. Chesterton offers a similar warning in Brave New Family where he notes that he does not trust the support economists and conservative parties offer the family. He recognized early on that the Enlightenment world view cannot be relied on and economists would support the family’s destruction or impoverishment if this leads to greater profitability.
American society shares a legacy with British philosophy and also serves to advance the culture of death. Our new administration’s foreign policy seeks to expand abortion rights in developing countries. We are offering the very same argument as the Economist and are now marketing death to the poor. Our culture argues for less people to improve financial viability but we have made authentic happiness more difficult to achieve. The human heart can never find fulfillment in materialist logic or economic thought.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Original Article (available online): Trends in Ecology and Evolution
A new article published in Trends in Ecology and Evolution reviews the scientific literature examining the effect oral contraception has on female sexual preferences and also how it weakens a woman's attractiveness to men. The first finding is that women who use the pill prefer more feminine men and that this can have a long-term effect on the the family in future generations. Secondly, the pill makes women less appealing to men than females with normal cycles. The physical changes in a typical period change a woman's body in a way that makes her more appealing and attractive. Culturally, this has had the effect of weakening the distinctiveness of what means to be a man or a woman. And this makes those women who use the pill less attractive. While these findings seem reasonable in retrospect, this is only the beginning of this research. Future projects will reveal even more profoundly disturbing consequences for families, individuals, and society. This could have been avoided if Pope Paul IV's warning was taken seriously, but his predictions were ignored and society is today suffering the consequences. This may widen the cultural distinction between families that follow Church teaching and those that do not. Who would have thought that the pill could lead women to prefer wimpy, feminine husbands? It makes sense that women who intentionally destroy their fertility would be less attractive. Then again, it is not a coincidence that rejecting the possibility of human life would diminish the natural attraction between a man and a woman. After all, one of the greatest joys in life is having children. When a couple closes itself to life, it is destroying its potential for happiness. It is inevitable that this would make a person less attractive.
Mail Online examines this paper (considers how this may have feminized pop culture icons)
A summary of a previous study
Contraception has a devastating effect on the environment - Published by Catholic Online
Fr Corapi on the link between contraception and the downfall of the West (article)
Friday, October 9, 2009
The press release also reads that "Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world's attention and given its people hope for a better future. His diplomacy is founded in the concept that those who are to lead the world must do so on the basis of values and attitudes that are shared by the majority of the world's population."
What greatest value is there, shared by the majority of the world's population, if not life itself?
And what has Obama done in his 37 weeks as President? Rescinded the Mexico City Policy, assured his continual support for China's one-child policy, confirmed his never-ending promises to Planned Parenthood and the alike, and proposed a national health care system that would fund abortion.
There cannot be any world diplomacy or international understanding without respect for human life from conception to natural death. There cannot be true peace without a commitment to life. President Obama is certainly not a champion of this and should not have been awarded a peace prize.
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Perhaps it is a little strange to review the work of a historical materialist on a blog focusing on Catholic culture. David Harvey, although a Marxist, is one of the most important contemporary social theorists and has written The Limits to Capital, The Condition of Postmodernity, A Brief History of Neoliberalism, and all of these books are thoughtful, well-written, and interesting. The New Imperialism is a brief historical account of
Tragically, this account tells only half of the story. Within the
The title of this book accuses the
This work provides some insight into the negative consequences of
Monday, October 5, 2009
According to the Daily Telegraph, "The Louvre has the right to protest against boutiques it considers fail to meet such criteria. However, the museum told the Daily Telegraph it had agreed to a "quality" McCafé and a McDonald's in place by the end of the year, which it said was "in line with the museum's image"". French culture is really going down the toilet if the Louvre's image is in line with McDonald's! I still have to see the day when this corporation produces 'quality' food and who knows, maybe someday soon we will see the Egyptian mummies dressed up as Ronald McDonald!
This is clearly a sign of the decline of France and what we call civilization.
Sunday, October 4, 2009
Saturday, October 3, 2009
Doctors have the right to deny food and water to terminally ill patients and sedate them until death without the consent of their families. This literally gives British doctors the ability to exterminate terminally ill patients. One study finds that over one quarter of the families are not told when food/water has been removed and death mandated.
Animal/Human Hybrid Clones
A patient receiving medical care may have his blood and tissue used in medical experiments to create animal/human clones without their consent. This will make all British patients potential collaborators in experiments that are intrinsically evil.
20,000 British Families Monitored By 24 Hour Government Cameras
The British have inverted the natural order where the government is sub-ordered to the family and have created an in-human governmental tyranny.
Hate Crimes Do Not Apply When Catholic Church Is Victim
While Pope Benedict prepares for a visit to the UK, a massive propaganda effort is being waged to attack the Holy Father and Church teachings. These tactics would be illegal if another organization or person were targeted but are tolerated when the Church is the victim.
Christians Have Been "Disenfranchised" In UK
Although there is little an individual can do to change the dollar's movement, there is much families can do to prepare for this. It is time to be prudent and prepare for difficult times ahead when the dollar begins its descent.
Gold: Bullion bulls | The Economist
The American dollar: Down with the dollar | The Economist
Thursday, October 1, 2009
While the Chinese communist government is celebrating its 60th anniversary today, we remember St. Augustine Zhao Rong and his 119 companions who were canonized nine years ago today. Today is their feast day. We ask these martyrs to remember the people of China, who suffer under a regime that has taken more innocent human life than any other regime in world history.
It is also important to note that the U.S. dollar is in relative trouble globally and there may be increased pressure to replace it with the Euro, Yuan, or a new currency. Jeffrey Sachs observed that the U.S. has already passed on the "baton" to the G-20 as our economy is becoming less important globally.
This is bad new for families in the United States. Even our economic recovery may make life more difficult. Fortunately, we do not hope in economics or the dollar which, even in the best times, cannot answer the needs of the heart.