Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Time to Take a Small Break

I won't be posting for the next few days. It's time to take a small break, relax, have a Guinness or two, spend time with my family and count my many blessings. It's our fifteenth wedding anniversary tomorrow. Lady Mad is up there at the top of the blessings list with Masters Liam and Brendan.

What a fortunate guy am I.

Visit the Red Ensign Brigade blogs and other sites on my sidebar and enjoy their astute and sometimes pungent but always relevant commentary.

Dominus Vobiscum!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Welcome Woman Priests

Father-Sister-Doctor Michele Birch-Conery
(not in her priestly vestments)

Joanne Laucius

The Ottawa Citizen
Tuesday, July 26, 2005

GANANOQUE, Ont. - Nine women were ordained as Roman Catholic priests and deacons on a riverboat that sailed down the St. Lawrence River yesterday, defying the Vatican, which considers such ceremonies invalid and illegal.

The hymn-filled ceremony was the first of its kind in North America, and the five new deacons and four new priests -- including Canadian Michele Birch-Conery, 65 -- risk excommunication from the church for their actions.
Whether Fr.-Sr.-Dr. Birch-Conery is excommunicated for participation in this wonderful spectacle is, of course, for her Ordinary (bishop) or the Vatican to decide.

As I stated last Friday, I support the new deaconesses and priestesses in their chosen vocations and look for their support and attendance at my upcoming inauguration as President of the United States. I believe we ought to actualize our inner dreams however odd they might seem to others.

I simply will not allow my status as a Canadian citizen and my birthplace in Canada to determine my exclusion from the office of the president. Like Robert Mugabe of Zimbawbwe, I shall crawl from oppressed excluded obscurity into the kindly light of great political power.

Once I'm their president, I wouldn't want to be an American cattle rancher who struggled in the US courts to keep our Canadian mad cow beef out of American supermarkets. I think they were wrong to restrict consumer choices to US mad cow burgers only. I'll put our Canuck mad cows up against their mad cows any day. But I digress.

Today's ordinations may raise certain questions among observers. The web site dedicated to the priestess movement has some relevant questions and answers. Here is one.
Why not build up a different model of church and simply bless ministries? Since the dualistic system of clerics and laity in the church has become corrupted by the abuse of power, why ordain women to become part of that system?
Good question indeed. Here's their answer.
1. Because we are in a transitional time, we need to claim for women their equal right with men to be ordained. And we need to do this 'contra legem', to break an unjust law and yet to remain firmly within the church. (Excommunication does not put one outside the church: it is a punishment which forbids one to participate in the sacraments.) If, in this initial transitional stage we do not ordain women, but merely bless the ministries of everyone, we will do nothing towards claiming equal rights for women in the church. And I believe that no-one would take us seriously. We would be seen as just another sect. ....
No one take them seriously? Seen as just another sect?

Perish the thought.

On their web site the priestesses draw comparisons with their repression in the Church to that of oppressed blacks South Africans in liberating their country from white-only rule. I can definitely see the parallels myself (see my Robert Mugabe comment above). Read this (abridged) sampling of the bios of the ordinands and see if you don't agree that they are greatly oppressed people in dire need of liberation.

Michele Birch-Conery, M.F.A., Creative Writing and Ph.D in English Literature is a published poet and a feminist literary critic writing in an experimental genre she calls "Inclusive Discourse." She is an educator at North Island College, a multi-campus community reaching people in rural areas of Vancouver Island. Since 1990, she has taught Canadian and Women's Literature, Global Perspectives and Issues in Women's Health in Women's Studies. From 1963 to 1974, she studied and taught with the Sisters of the Holy Names in Oregon and Washington.

Rebecca McGuyver, Ph.D. is a university biology teacher, a professional science writer, and an invited speaker on the bio-theology of sex and gender. ... A divorcee and avid tennis player, Rebecca McGuyver lives alone with her two dachshunds.

Regina Nicolosi, MA, was born in a small town on the Rhine River. She was a teacher in Germany before she came to the USA. She and her husband Charles, a radiologist and deacon, raised four children. Regina participated fully in CharlesÂ’ preparation to the diaconate. She earned her Masters Degree in Pastoral Studies, worked as a chaplain in both a correctional facility for boys and in a drug and alcohol recovery unit, and as housing manager for seniors. Her present ministry is as a chaplain in a nursing home. She and her husband Deacon Charles have been married for 36 years.

Victoria Rue, M.Div., Ph.D. is a feminist theologian, and writer/director/teacher of theatre. She teaches at San Jose State University in Comparative Religions and Women's Studies. She lives with her beloved Kathryn, her partner of fifteen years.

Jane Via has a B.A. in Spanish Language and Literature from Purdue University, a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from Marquette University and a J.D. from the University of San Diego. She is a county prosecutor in San Diego, California and teaches Religious Studies part time.

Kathy Sullivan Vandenberg, M.S., M.Div., is a feminist theologian, clinical therapist, and trauma specialist. She is presently doing counseling with the disenfranchised. Ms Vandenberg's current ministries include: counseling, adjunct graduate educator, hospital chaplain, and active in several ministries in her parish.

Well, you can now see for yourself that the life experience of these deeply oppressed clerics is quite similar to that of the average black South African with whom they strongly identify. I shall not belabour the point by drawing further attention to the awful quality of their lives. Toiling as a feminist theologian in a North American university, for instance, is fraught with great hardships you might not fully appreciate. The newly ordained, however, are modest clerics and would not want me to dwell on their plight. Hagiography is so embarrassing to the hagioged.

I hope and expect that they will have as much success in their new vocations as I hope and expect to have in mine.

President of the United States (self-Elect)
John the Mad

P.S. Oh, I nearly forgot to thank the main stream media for not placing scare quotes around the words "ordained" or "priests." It is so important not to show favouritism by siding with the Episcopal authority of the Catholic Church and faithful laity which might consider the ordinations to be invalid, silly, feminist, guerrilla theatre undertaken by pampered, middle class academics with an axe to grid against two thousand years of Church doctrine, tradition, scripture and magisterial authority. Bless you.

Our Troops Deploy

From today's Toronto Star, Bruce Campion-Smith reports.
OTTAWA BUREAU OTTAWA -—Three years ago, they cut their teeth in the caves and mountains of Afghanistan -— and established themselves as a "world-class" special forces team.

Now, Gen. Rick Hillier, chief of defence staff, has announced that soldiers from Joint Task Force 2, the elite and secretive counter-terrorism team, will form part of the Canadian Forces contingent moving into the troubled Kandahar region over the coming weeks. This morning, another 110 soldiers are due to leave Edmonton to join the mission that has been described by top-ranking Canadians as "high risk."

Retired major-general Lewis MacKenzie is certain JTF2 commandos are already in Afghanistan, scouting threats for the soldiers who will form a provincial reconstruction team.

"I would imagine that JTF is checking out the intelligence situation and they're doing a risk analysis in the area where the (reconstruction team) will go," MacKenzie said in an interview."If they happen to be lucky enough to stumble upon a Taliban group, there are two possibilities -— stay hidden, don't do a thing, or take them out depending on what the situation is and what their orders are," he said.

Forty JTF2 soldiers were sent to Afghanistan in 2001 to help root out Taliban resistance, marking the first time the unit had been used in a major combat operation. They joined special forces soldiers from other countries in operations credited with killing and capturing key Taliban leaders.

Last December, that joint unit was awarded the U.S. Presidential Unit Citation for its "extraordinary heroism" during enemy action."In numerous challenging missions against Taliban and Al Qaeda targets, they captured enemy personnel, equipment and material of significant intelligence value," Canadian Vice-Admiral Greg Maddison, the former deputy chief of defence staff, says in an information video about the team.
No doubt, all military combat operations will be accomplished without the use of testosterone, in order not to offend the delicate sensibilities of Carolyn Parrish MP and other members of parliament that list to the left. As I write platoon commanders are probably briefing the troops on the rules of engagement for the Kandahar deployment. Listen closely.
"Avoid that 'manly' stuff. No cussing. No spitting. No sweating profusely while firing rifles." Try singing folksongs to the enemy. It will show them we mean them no harm. If they think we're aggressive they might detonate their backpacks. Ditch the bayonets. They are sharp and threatening, and icky when used. Offer to trade baseball trading cards. Use breath mints. Remember, we are Canadian peacekeepers. Thank you kindly. That is all. Move out 'em out Sergeant."

Carolyn Parrish Trashes General Hillier

Carolyn Parrish MP, the erstwhile and hopeful Grit who was kicked out of caucus for stomping on a George Bush doll on national television, has the knack of garnering publicity by making outrageous anti-American statements that titillate the main stream media and delight the "George Bush is the font of all evil" latte drinking death cultist set.

She is now expanding her limited rhetorical repetoire by attacking General Rick Hiller, the new Chief of the Defence Staff, for making outspoken comments to the media pertaining to the role of the Canadian Forces in the fight against Islamist terrorists. From Jane Taber in today's Globe & Mail, we learn the following.

She called him "dangerous" and a "testosterone-filled general," and added that "somebody should put a clamp on his mouth."

Ms. Parrish, a self-described "peacenik," said she was particularly offended by Gen. Hillier's aggressive comments this month that the job of Canadian soldiers is "to be able to kill people."

He had been speaking to reporters about the Canadian troop deployment to Kandahar, where the troops will target terrorist "murderers and scumbags."

"They talk about me being outspoken," she said. "I'm speaking on my own behalf. This man is purporting to speak on behalf of the government, and I think he's dangerous.

"I'm totally offended by him. . . . We are also not a country that is going to easily throw away 100 years of peacekeeping reputation and noble reputation in the world by a testosterone-filled general, and I think somebody should put a clamp on his mouth."

She has complained to Defence Minister Bill Graham about the general's comments.

Sigh. Canada has not been in the peacekeeping business for a hundred years. Prime Minister Lester Pearson invented the concept (for which he received the Nobel Peace Prize) during the Suez Crisis of 1956. We were rather good at the UN peacekeeping role then because we excelled at the warmaking role up to that point (Vimy Ridge, Juno Beach in Normandy, the liberation of Holland, the Battle of the Atlantic, Korea.) We had about 150 thousand highly trained and well equipped personnel in the Forces in 1957.

Our subsequent capacity to carry out her dearly beloved peacekeeping role steadily eroded as the Liberals degraded our military through repetitive and severe budget and personnel cuts so that now we have fewer than 50 thousand troops in the regular navy, army and airforce combined. The equipment they possess is obsolete and rusting out at an accelerating rate. Our training system is significantly diminished, our rather minor deployments are undertaken by overstressing the troops we do have, to great cost in family relationships and the health of the military personnel repeadely deployed. We have lost our airlift capacity. We are down to two fighter squadrons. Our frigates sit idle without crews. And so on and so on.

Canada has dropped from number one position in UN peacekkeping to 33rd at last check. The average African country does more. So Carolyn Parrish is plain wrong in her portrayal of the Canadian Forces. Our reputation is no longer relevant as our capacity to wage war in any meaningful role is no longer extant. As Monte Python would say, "This parrot is diseased. It is no longer among the living."

Keep in mind that the Liberal "peacekeeping" myth may be politcally useful, but is no longer tactically significant. We no longer live in a world where "peacekeeping troops" are needed. UN and other (e.g., NATO) troops are increasingly called upon to undertake a more dangerous and difficult "peacemaking" role. That is part odf what our troops will be doing in Kandahar. For that you need soldiers who are fully trained, prepared and armed for combat. It is that to which General Hillier referred when he said,
"We are not the public service of Canada, we are not just another department [of government]. We are the Canadian Forces, and our job is to be able to kill people."
General Hiller has the actual real life experience of soldiering that the self-confessed peacenick Carolyn Parrish lacks. Unlike her, he has actually served (and commanded) NATO troops deployed to Afghanistan. He has had to bury men who served under him; men who were killed by the "destestable murderers and scumbags" of which he spoke. He knows our enemy.

As for Parrish's sexist testosterone comment she would do well to keep in mind, as she sups her chilled soups in the refined ambience of the parliamentary dining room, that testosterone is considered a good thing in those who are called to serve their country in a war zone, as it helps to keep our guys alive and accomplish the mission. Combat is not the place for the effete.

I wish her well in returning to the Liberal caucus, where she fits in so well. She, and many of them, think General Hillier is dangerous. So he is, to the sworn enemies of Canada and our allies.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Apologies Rendered

Gov. Ed Rendell said written apologies will be sent to the family of a dead Marine who was upset about Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll's appearance at the man's funeral last week.

The funeral was held Tuesday for Staff Sgt. Joseph Goodrich, 32, of Pittsburgh's Westwood section. Goodrich died July 10 in Iraq.Family members said Knoll came to the funeral uninvited, passed out her business cards and made a remark about the government being against the war.

Goodrich's sister, Rhonda, told Channel 4 Action News that Knoll called and left an apology on her voice mail, along with her phone number and an invitation to call back. Rendell said Sunday that he hadn't spoken to Knoll, but he said it's not the business of state government to have a position on the war. He said the state supports the men and women fighting the war.

Rendell said written apologies will be sent to the Goodrich family.

Interesting. The Governor says, "it's not the business of state government to have a position on the war." His country is at war. He is the governor of an American state. The government he leads takes no position on the war. He and his government are neutral while men and women in the US Armed Forces die in battle against an enemy sworn to destroy his nation.

I know this is an American issue, but this Canuck can state with a fair degree of certainty that Governor Rendell is a poltroon. I speak with authority on the identification of poltroons. We have extensive experience with this type of political leader up here.

Imam Ali Hindy Utters Threats in Toronto

From this morning's Globe & Mail.
Colin Freeze
Monday, July 25, 2005

A controversial Toronto imam warned Public Safety Minister Anne McLellan at a closed-door meeting to stop "terrorizing" Canadian Muslims.

"If you try to cross the line I can't guarantee what is going to happen. Our young people, we can't control," Aly Hindy, the head of Scarborough's Salaheddin
Islamic Centre, recalls telling the minister at the May meeting she held in Toronto with dozens of Muslim leaders.

The meeting was part of an effort by Ms. McLellan to reach out to Canadian Muslims amid complaints that the RCMP and Canadian Security Intelligence Service are engaging in racial profiling.

The minister and her officials have been meeting community leaders to explain they are not targeting Muslims generally, only individuals with possible terrorist links.

Perhaps someone could explain to Aly Hindy that "terrorize" is not what CSIS is doing. 'Terrorize" is what Aly Hindy's religious confreres are doing worldwide in their jihad against western civilization.
Mr. Hindy, who has long complained that CSIS is spying on him, his family and his mosque, told Ms. McLellan that a young Muslim woman complained to him she was roughed up by Canadian spies while her husband was away at prayers. This allegation could spur reprisals because "our women are the most valuable thing to us" and "for a Muslim, honour is more important than his life," Mr. Hindy said in a recent interview.
Consider that statement inlight of what happened in India recently to a Muslim woman named Imrana who was raped by her Father-in-law.
The fatwa ordered Imrana Ilahi, 28, to separate from her husband and treat him as her son because she had sex with his father. "She had a physical relationship with her father-in-law, and it nullifies her marriage," said Mohammad Masood Madani, a cleric at the theological school. He said it made no difference whether the sex was consensual or forced. The village council then decreed that Mrs. Ilahi would have to marry her father-in-law.
Mr. Hindy may assert that, "for a Muslim, honour is more important than his life," but if the above is an indicator it woul appear that for many Muslims honour is more important than a wife.

He [Hindy] made the point to the minister. Several people who attended shrugged off the imam's remarks, but some Muslims and government agents later approached Mr. Hindy asking him to explain himself.

"The police came to me and said, 'This is a kind of threat,' and I said yes," he said. "But it's for the good of this country.

"And they said, 'Do you know some of the names of those people you expect to cause some problems?' And I said, 'You just open the telephone directory.' "

While government investigators probing the woman's complaint told Mr. Hindy they have not found evidence of wrongdoing, he isn't giving the spy service the benefit of the doubt.

"We believe CSIS should stop terrorizing us," he says in a flyer he is circulating to mosques. "CSIS is powerless. CSIS has no authority over you. If CSIS agents come to your door, do not open [it] for them."

I think we should make a deal here, .... for the good of the country, I mean. Islamists should stop the terror campaign against western civilization and CSIS will stop knocking on doors, questioning people and watching the activities of those most likely to kill us. Sounds like a win-win to me.

Same Sex Marriage, the Sequel.

Now that same-sex civil marriage has been proclaimed as the law of the land, Canada has become the fourth nation in the world to celebrate such marriages. My friends who support SSM point out to me that the sky has not fallen. That is true, but it is the ground beneath our feet with which I am most concerned.

Robot Guy has raised the logical follow up question.
"Can anyone suggest to me any reason that polygamous marriage, adult-child marriage, and man-dog marriage should remain illegal in Canada? ... any reason, that is, that was not used and declared invalid by the Supreme Court and the government in the arguments against same sex marriage?"

Some of the responses I got were:
(1) homosexuality and pedophilia/bestiality/polygamy are not the same thing
(2) that's silly! it would never happen
(3) such a suggestion is bigoted
(4) marriage is a right

Now, I was posting my question as a hypothetical, since I did not think that bill C-38 had been thought through well at all. I honestly wanted to know what could legally prevent bestiality, pedophilia, and polygamy.
It is my view that good legal and public policy reasons can be mustered to prevent adult-child marriages and bestiality (sorry PETA, I know you think hamsters have rights equal to socialists), but not so with polygamy and polyandry. In answer to his Robot Guy's question I left the following commentary (augmented here) on his site.

I have argued at great length during the SSM debate that once SSM marriage was allowed there would be no principled basis in law, or public policy, to deny polygamous or polyandrous marriages. The Bountiful B.C. Mormon cult will likely be first in line. Of course, I could be wrong about this and a Muslim could launch court action anywhere in Canada at any time.

But the first provincial court to strike down provisions against such marriages will likely be in B.C. The rest will follow. The argument that there is insufficient public support to allow polygamy is laughable given what happened with the SSM revolution.

We have not added a group (homosexuals) to traditional marriage in Canada; we have transformed marriage into something new and quite different. It now an institution the primary purpose of which is to celebrate loving feelings between adults. It is no longer an institution primarily concerned with the raising, protection and nurturing of children.

Of course, what do I know; I'm Mad.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

A Friend Reflects

A old and good friend sent me this e-mail this week. I think it is a thoughtful and very worthwhile reflection and asked him if I could post it on JtM. He agreed. Comments welcome.


I write of a certain form of guilt. As you will recall, when thermonuclear death was a clear and present danger, and when we faced each new year with about a 2% chance of major war, I made it my project to pray for the Politburo's conversion. Rather than simply focus on 'the conversion of Russia', I prayed for those grim old thugs.

Whenever the thought came to me I prayed; I prayed that the Holy Spirit would go to them, then and there, and gently trouble their minds with perceptions of the numinous, and realizations of a greater value. I imagined them caught in family gatherings, in meetings, arranging thuggeries, or disporting themselves with ballerinas, and believed the Holy Spirit, if asked, would set about them.

With my sense of who God is, I imagined a gentle sense of divine humour at work, rather than a fearful writing on the wall. This did not mean that we should not be willing to contend with them, or to meet them in the rubble for a final settlement over cold steel, only that we should pray without ceasing for God's purposes, which must surely bring a happier outcome.

When I said those prayers my own neck was on the block. Thermonuclear war would certainly kill me or make me wish I had been killed.

This spectre having passed, I ceased to pray without ceasing. Once in a very great long while I would still pray for the conversion of Russia, especially as the new thugs, gangsters and kleptocrats gained hold, but I was guilty of having stopped because my own life no longer seemed so clearly in the balance.

The same must be said of the present unpleasantness. I do pray, but I pray that we will not kill them all in some apocalyptic frenzy. I do not pray for their receipt of the Holy Spirit, or for their redemption, and I suspect that this is in good part because my own skin in not obviously in the balance. The only other explanation is that I believe in some actual limitation on the Holy Spirit in the face of our enemy's religious belief, that our enemy is so wicked that the Russian Communist Party was a spiritual pushover by comparison.

It is to limit the Holy Spirit.

So I will start praying for those guys and for us too, that God speak sanity to our hearts, even though, in this scenario, I see a different doomsday scenario: our guys are on the on the happier end of a flame thrower, and Osama bin Laden is cowering in a hole, and on the receiving end.

Surely the test of faith is that we pray for the grace to refrain from evil, not just that the other guy smarten up.

Suancho Panza
Squire to the Knight of the Wholeful Countenance

The Unbearable Rudeness of Politics

I don't know what it is about those on the "progressive" anti-war side of the political fence, Such as Lt. Gov. Baker Knoll (left) that allows so many like her to think the following constitutes acceptable behaviour. Hat tip to Either Orr.

Lt. Gov. crashed Marine's funeral, kin say

Saturday, July 23, 2005
By Tom Barnes, Post-Gazette Harrisburg Bureau

The family of a Marine who was killed in Iraq is furious with Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll for showing up uninvited at his funeral this week, handing out her business card and then saying "our government" is against the war.

Rhonda Goodrich of Indiana, Pa., said yesterday that a funeral was held Tuesday at a church in Carnegie for her brother-in-law, Staff Sgt. Joseph Goodrich, 32. She said he "died bravely and courageously in Iraq on July 10, serving his country." In a phone interview, Goodrich said the funeral service was packed with people "who wanted to tell his family how Joe had impacted their lives."

Then, suddenly, "one uninvited guest made an appearance, Catherine Baker Knoll." She sat down next to a Goodrich family member and, during the distribution of communion, said, "Who are you?" Then she handed the family member one of her business cards, which Goodrich said she still has.

"Knoll felt this was an appropriate time to campaign and impose her will on us," Goodrich said. "I am amazed and disgusted Knoll finds a Marine funeral a prime place to campaign."

Goodrich said she is positive that Knoll was not invited to the funeral, which was jammed with Marines in dress uniform and police officers, because the fallen Marine had been a policeman in McKeesport and Indiana County.

"Our family deserves an apology," Rhonda Goodrich said. "Here you have a soldier who was killed -- dying for his country -- in a church full of grieving family members and she shows up uninvited. It made a mockery of Joey's death."

What really upset the family, Goodrich said, is that Knoll said, 'I want you to know our government is against this war,' " Goodrich said.

She said she is going to seek an answer from Gov. Ed Rendell's administration if it opposes the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Knoll was traveling yesterday, away from the Capitol, and couldn't be reached. But an aide said she "extends condolences to all families who have lost loved ones" serving in the military.

Without having talked to her, the aide, who asked not to be named, said, "The family members of fallen soldiers are in our hearts and prayers. Our prayers go out to their loved ones in their hour of grief."

Asked to comment on Goodrich's complaints about Knoll's conduct at the funeral, the aide said that "would be inappropriate."
Crashing a funeral mass. Glad handing during communion. Making political anti-war statements to family of a fallen marine at the bloody funeral. In my view, her comments and actions reveal a pathological arrogance rendering Catherine Baker Knoll unfit for public office. She possesses the manners of a guttersnipe. I take that back. That would be a slander on guttersnipes.

May perpetual light shine upon Sgt. Staff Sgt. Joseph Goodrich, USMC.


Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted;
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

From "For the Fallen" by Laurence Binyon (1869-1943)

Friday, July 22, 2005

Michele Birch-Conery to be Ordained Priestess

DIRK MEISSNER, Canadian Press
07/15/2005 20:55 EST

VICTORIA (CP) - An English literature instructor from Vancouver Island says she will be ordained as Canada's first woman Roman Catholic priest in a ceremony conducted on the waters of the St. Lawrence River.

Michele Birch-Conery of Parksville said Friday she expects the church to threaten her with excommunication, but she believes she is fighting a human rights issue. Birch-Conery, 65, is one of eight woman from North America who will attend a special ordination service July 25 on the river between the United States and Canada, where no church diocese has jurisdiction.

The proceedings will be held near the Ontario vacation community of Gananoque. Birch-Conery said she wants to become part of the struggle to change church canon law that prohibits women from entering the priesthood. "We're taking a stand that to keep that canon law which says women cannot be ordained is a violation of our human rights as women in the church," she said. "We'll have to see what it unfolds into. I don't know where it is going to go."

The church hierarchy, from the Vatican down, officially rejects women priests, but there is a movement within the Catholic church, including unnamed bishops, who quietly support the efforts of the women, she said. "People privately are all over the lot on this issue," Birch-Conery said. "If the church continues to hold these stands people will be saying, ' you can't do that,' this is against our civil rights, our human rights."

The Victoria diocese of the Catholic church could not be reached for comment. The Vatican, which doesn't allow women to serve as priests, excommunicated seven women ordained in 2002 in Europe. At least two male Catholic bishops secretly participated in the European ceremony, Birch-Conery said. The names of the bishops will not be made public until their deaths, she said.

Three of the women ordained in 2002 will be part of the Ontario ceremony later this month, Birch-Conery said. "The Vatican is in a tough position, as are we, so hopefully we get it all sorted out as time goes by," she said. "Until we address this gender issue we're actually going nowhere in this church, except round and round in circles."

Birch-Conery said she thinks Pope Benedict XVI knows about the July 25 ceremony. "Of course he knows," she said. "He's the person who excommunicated the first seven (women priests) in 2002. It was Benedict, who was then Cardinal (Joseph) Ratzinger."

Birch-Conery, who has spent the last 18 years teaching English literature [and women's studies] courses at North Island College in Port Alberni, said she has been involved in the church for most of her life. She received her doctorate in English literature from the University of Iowa. She writes poetry when she gets the chance.

Birch-Conery said she was born in Vancouver, but left Canada for the United States when she was 23 years old to join a congregation of religious sisters in the United States. The gender issue in the church also caused her to stay away from religion for years, but her academic background, especially her study of women's rights and equality issues, pulled her back to the church to attempt to force change, she said.

"If I've been teaching women's studies and gender equality all this time, I suppose I should come back in and address these issues," said Birch-Conery. Birch-Conery said she has attended Catholic churches on Vancouver Island in Parksville, Port Alberni and Duncan. She said she is willing to conduct some church rites with followers, but doesn't expect to be invited to preach sermons at local churches.
You might think I am opposed to this theological putsch, but you would be wrong. I had a Damascus experience while reading the article and I now say, "Go for it girl!" Release your inner id and let slip the eschatological dogs of theology. Actualize your ontological dreams! Let your oppressed feelings flow wherever thwarted ambitions are, er ....thwarted! Arise oppressed, uh .... masses .... so to speak.

I say that freedom and liberty are for those brave enough to seize the day and dodge Paul Martin's steamships out on the St. Lawrence Seaway. Close your eyes and imagine with all your might and ... and uh ... and it will be. Build it and it will uh, .... be built. In with the good, out with the bad. The positive ions of this approach will spread throughout Gaia and transform the earth. Father-Sister-Doctor Birch-Conery has shown me the light.

Of course, I am not the only one who she has tutored to the truth. Here are three evaluations of her teaching from Father-Sister-Doctor's students at North Island College.
"Completely Unclear. A lot of time spent on irrelevant topics. A lot of time organizing into groups. A lot of her own personal problems. More reminiscent of group therapy. Will do my best to avoid her classes in the future."

"I found this class to be very unclear. I was not at all impressed with this class, and will go out of my way to make sure that I do not have her as a professor again."

"I found Michele to be very nice, but not very clear with what she means when asking a question. Lots of class time spent organizing groups and not really doing the work."
You might think these evaluations are rather unflattering but you probably stuck in a patriarchal paradigm. Not me, ... at least any longer.

I want to be the President of the United States. Ever since I saw George Bush land on that aircraft carrier in the spiffy flight suit, I have yearned to be Commander in Chief of the United States Armed Forces. It is not good Accordingly, consistent with the emerging "seize the pulpit" zeitgeist, I have decided to be inaugurated President of the United States next week in a place where neither American not Canadian sovereignty is recognized. I will take the oath of office in Quebec City.

My presidential inauguration will be attended by three justices of the US Supreme Court and several congressmen and senators; unfortunately in covert operations mode. Plastic surgery will render their physical faces unrecognisable , but I'll let Dan Rather know their identities just so I can authenticate their presence in his forthcoming memoir. If Dan says it's true, I just know you'll believe me. He used to be a TV anchor, you know.

Unfortunately, Senator Hillary Clinton has said she can't attend my swearing-in as she is currently working on a bid to gain the Democratic presidential nomination for 2008. That is so, .... like ... hierarchical and 1990s. I'll just swear the oath and assume office.

I'll also seal a tape of the inauguration event into a time capsule and bury it under the high altar of the first Catholic church in which Fr.-Sr.-Dr. Birch-Conery is appointed pastor. After all the justices and politicians are dead, the time capsule will be unearthed during a sacred liturgical dance by womendeacons on All Hallows Eve and all will be revealed. Truly. Dan Rather will give the voice over. It could revive his career.

Until now, I have been prevented from realizing my deeply convicted ambition to be president because of an archaic and unjust law which says that a US president must be born in the United States. This is immensely wounding to non-Americans, not to mention career limiting to the current Governor of California. So I must act. Opening the office of the president to excluded "others" will liberate orgone energy and suppress mad cow prions.

Thank you Fr. Sr. Dr. Birch-Conery. You've changed my life with your paradigm shift. Next we must work together to abolish this silly idea that people must be Catholic to be ordained a Catholic priest. Just what, pray tell, is wrong with Bhuddists? Restricting orders to Catholics is so like exclusionary. We must get the word out. Don't worry, I'll lend you Air Force One so you can spread the good news.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Sharia Law and Imrana's Rape

At Dhimmi Watch, July 3rd, there is a case for you to consider the next time some "progressive" asserts that Sharia Law is harmless and ought to be allowed to be used in civil cases in Ontario.

PUNE - The rape case and plight of the 28-year-old Indian Muslim woman, Imrana, is slowly turning into a political drama with, both Muslims and non-Muslims pitching in their worth.

While the fatwa issued by Ulemas of the Deoband and the Muslim Law Board has triggered a hornet's nest, the Hindu fundamentalists BJP turned to their pet peeve by calling for reforms in the personal laws of Islam and to bring these in consonance with the constitutional guarantees.

Imrana was raped by her father-in-law, who is now in judicial custody, and the issue of Imrana's marriage and Muslim personal law has all come under sharp focus, in the predominantly Hindu country.

There are 180 million Muslims in India and they were shell-shocked to see on the television screen the victim of rape begging and screaming to be let alone. Fully veiled and in black burqa she was shown on television pleading, "Please leave me alone, please, I'm tired, don't trouble me, don't highlight my case, and to look at this case from the point of view of a woman."

"I shall abide by the decision of the Shariah court, but I would like that the accused be punished severally," said Imrana. "I will do whatever the Shariah asks me to do," she added. "If they tell me to leave my husband, then I will. I will follow the fatwa," she said.

Darul Uloom, of Deoband, which issued the controversial fatwa, stood firm before the Shariah court and had in an edict stated that Imrana's marriage stands nullified in light of the alleged rape and she should separate from her husband.

Her father-in-law Ali Muhammed raped Imrana Noor Elahi, mother of five children and resident of Charthawal town of Muzaffarnagar district in western state of Uttar Pradesh allegedly on June 4. The Islamic seminary Darul Uloom Deoband has ruled that a woman raped by her father-in-law could not be allowed to live with her husband any longer and issuing a fatwa (decree) that her staying with her husband Noor Elahi has become untenable as per the Islamic law after the rape. ...

The All India Muslim Law Board (AIMPLB) also concurred with the Darul Uloom of Deoband fatwa, while the lone woman member of the board Naseem Iqtedar Ali Khan too approved the edict and said that as per the Qur'an, Imrana's conjugal relationship with her husband stands dissolved, since she had been raped by the latter's blood relative.

Had she been raped by anyone other than a blood relative, she could have stayed with her husband, but here, a sacred relationship has been violated, the consequences of which has to be borne by Imrana and her husband Noor Elahi and pointed out that the responsibility of the couple's five children would have to be shouldered by Elahi as long as required. "India is not a Islamic country were a rapist is stoned to death. Here it is the law of the land which prevails in cases of granting relief to a rape victim and punishing the offender" Naseem Khan stated...

The "sacred relationship" referred to above is that between father and son, not husband and wife.

Things can't get worse than that you say. Oh, but it can.

BOMBAY -- (from Dhimmi Watch July 10) Hard-line Islamic clerics in a northern Indian village have declared that a woman's 10-year-old marriage was nullified when her father-in-law raped her -- and ordered the mother of five to marry the rapist. [emphasis is mine]. The fatwa, or religious edict, was issued by Darool Uloom Deoband, South Asia's most powerful Islamic theological school known for promoting a radical brand of Islam that is said to have inspired the Taliban in Afghanistan.

The decision has outraged both Muslim and Hindu leaders and prompted a fierce debate that has dominated the front pages of national newspapers across India.

The fatwa ordered Imrana Ilahi, 28, to separate from her husband and treat him as her son because she had sex with his father. "She had a physical relationship with her father-in-law, and it nullifies her marriage," said Mohammad Masood Madani, a cleric at the theological school. He said it made no difference whether the sex was consensual or forced. The village council then decreed that Mrs. Ilahi would have to marry her father-in-law.

Feminists and liberal Muslims reacted with fury, staging nationwide street protests.

But Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh on June 29 supported the fatwa, saying: "The decision of the Muslim religious leaders in the Imrana case must have been taken after a lot of thought. ... The religious leaders are all very learned and they understand the Muslim community and its sentiments.

No objections, for they are very learned and understand the Muslim community and its sentiments. That is sufficient.

Our Enemy is Implacable

I have long believed that the struggle against radical Islam promises to be very protracted and very dirty. I don't believe we have seen the worst of it at all. Our sworn enemy is implacable and there are no lengths to which he will not go. From
CNN we learn of this.
CAIRO, Egypt (CNN) -- The father of one of the hijackers who commandeered the first plane that crashed into the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, praised the recent terror attacks in London and said many more would follow.

Speaking to CNN producer Ayman Mohyeldin Tuesday in his apartment in the upper-middle-class Cairo suburb of Giza, Mohamed el-Amir said he would like to see more attacks like the July 7 bombings of three London subway trains and a bus that killed 52 people, plus the four bombers.

Displayed prominently in the apartment were pictures of el-Amir's son, Mohamed Atta, the man who is believed to have piloted American Airlines Flight 11 into the north tower of the World Trade Center as part of the attacks on the United States.

El-Amir said the attacks in the United States and the July 7 attacks in London were the beginning of what would be a 50-year religious war, in which there would be many more fighters like his son. He declared that terror cells around the world were a "nuclear bomb that has now been activated and is ticking."

The man, who gave his age as "at least 70," said he had no sorrow for what happened in London, and said there was a double standard in the way the world viewed the victims in London and victims in the Islamic world.

Cursing in Arabic, el-Amir also denounced Arab leaders and Muslims who condemned the London attacks as being traitors and non-Muslims. He passionately vowed that he would do anything within his power to encourage more attacks.
In another development we learn the following from Andrew Sparrow of The Telegraph.
In a separate move, Anjem Choudary, the UK leader of the militant Islamist group al-Muhajiroun, interviewed for BBC Radio 4's Today programme said Muslim leaders should not meet Mr [Prime Minister Tony] Blair.

"The British Government wants to show that they are on the side of justice and of truth, whereas in reality the real terrorists are the British regime, and even the British police, who have tried to divide the Muslim community into moderates and extremists, whereas this classification doesn't exist in Islam," he said.

"Either you are a practising Muslim or a non-practising one, and I cannot envisage that any practising Muslim would sit with the Government, especially with the blood that they have on their hands and the atrocious foreign policy they have and the aggression they are committing against the Muslim community in Britain."

He added: "We need to see what caused this particular effect, otherwise we are going to continue in a cycle of blood and I believe another 7/7 is a very real possibility."

Another radical Muslim, Sheikh Omar Bakri Mohammed, said British voters were to blame for the London attacks for not making enough effort to stop the Government committing its own atrocities in Iraq and Afghanistan.
It seems the practitioners of Dhimmitude have their lines and their plan down pat.

Damn it Colonel I'm a Gunner Not a Miracle Worker

Scottie has beamed up for the last time. He died this morning in his Redmond Washington home at age eighty five of pneumonia and Alzheimer?s disease. While the public knows him as Scottie, of Star Track fame, there was another side to him. From the Bob Thomas of Associated Press, via The Toronto Star.

James Montgomery Doohan was born March 3, 1920, in Vancouver, B.C., youngest of four children of William Doohan, a pharmacist, veterinarian and dentist, and his wife Sarah. As he wrote in his autobiography, Beam Me Up, Scotty, his father was a drunk who made life miserable for his wife and children.

At 19, James escaped the turmoil at home by joining the Canadian army, becoming a lieutenant in artillery. He was among the Canadian forces that landed on Juno Beach on D-Day. "The sea was rough," he recalled. "We were more afraid of drowning than the Germans."

The Canadians crossed a minefield laid for tanks; the soldiers weren't heavy enough to detonate the bombs. At 11:30 that night, he was machine-gunned, taking six hits: one that took off his middle right finger (he managed to hide the missing finger on the screen), four in his leg and one in the chest. Fortunately the chest bullet was stopped by his silver cigarette case.

After the war Doohan on a whim enrolled in a drama class in Toronto. He showed promise and won a two-year scholarship to New York?s famed Neighborhood Playhouse, where fellow students included Leslie Nielsen, Tony Randall and Richard Boone.

Thanks Scottie ... for the great memories. And in this year of the veteran this one is for you.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

My Secret Heresy Revealed

Just a quick comment before bed. Last week I was posting about taking the religion test and being found to be 96% Catholic. I was distraught because I had no clue where the 4% heresy lay in my character. (I had to remove the post because it was screwing up my sidebar for some reason.) Now I figured out where my heresy lies.

I like Harry Potter. I read it to my eldest son. We are currently working our way through the latest book and we are both thoroughly enjoying it. I don't think Harry Potter books lead to an unhealthy interest in the occult. If I did they wouldn't make it over the drawbridge into Castle Mad.

There is some dispute over the comments from the Pope (then Cardinal Ratzinger, when he wrote some comments in a personal letter). It is doubtful from what I have read that Pope Benedict has even read the books.

In the the end, I think Harry is okay. He's a good guy with pretty good values who spends most of his time:

a) growing up; and
b) fighting evil in the form of "He Who Must Not Be Named."

The "magic" is of the fantasy variety, not the occult variety. If the wizards of the Lord of the Rings can be construed as a Catholic/Christian masterpiece, then there's no need to convene an inquisition on Harry Potter.

I may be doomed to extra time in Purgatory, but there you have it.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Does Carolyn Parrish Understand Democracy?

Yesterday, I took what you might have concluded was a cheap shot at Carolyn Parrish MP for Mississauga-Erindale (Ind.).

"US political discourse often manifests itself in bitter and ugly political battles the likes of which would make that foul-mouthed stomper of George Bush dolls, Carolyn Parrish MP appear to be a rube (which, come to think of it, she is.) No offence to rubes."

It may have been a cheap shot then. It's an empirical fact now.

My comment was made before I read about her views on a by-election to replace the late Chuck Cadman MP who died recently from melanoma. The Liberals are considering delaying the by-election because it would likely return a Conservative to the Commons.

Parrish has written a letter to the Toronto Star (hat tip to Kate of Small Dead Animals) In the letter she sets out her belief that the citizens of Mr. Cadman's riding should not get an opportunity to elect a new member of parliament until Paul Martin gets around to calling a general election. Mr. Martin has promised to hold one shortly after Judge Gomery tenders his report on Liberal wrongdoing, but it is not constitutionally required until June 2009, (unless he sooner loses the confidence of the Commons before then). Whether you believe Paul Martin's promises is entirely up to you. Here is her letter.

To suggest the best way for Prime Minister Paul Martin to honour Chuck Cadman's memory would be to call a by-election quickly is to make his courageous effort to get to Ottawa on May 19 a waste of whatever strength he had remaining.

Historically, Surrey North elects representatives who are right of centre. In this case, it will most logically elect a Conservative. That Conservative will vote quite opposite to the way Cadman voted should there be another non-confidence motion. Fundamentally, representatives in a party-based system such as ours do not break ranks on matters of confidence. The vote of confidence was decided by independents, of which Cadman was one. No one breaks rank with his or her party on confidence motions, else that politician is immediately cast out . Only a truly elected independent, such as Cadman, can purely and completely vote the way a majority of his riding wants him to, once he's fairly sure he has a true picture of their wishes.

Cadman's constituents did not want to go to the polls this spring. It's probably safe to say, that feeling hasn't changed in the last two months. Cadman has chosen, I'm sure, competent staff for his constituency who mirror his attitudes and beliefs and who will continue to deal with constituents' cases efficiently and sympathetically.

Also, Cadman's constituents very clearly were concerned about the expense of an early election which would probably not have dramatically changed the composition of the House. A single by-election would cost at least $250,000 only to be re-run less than a year from now.

If Martin truly wants to honour the memory of Chuck Cadman, who went to superhuman lengths to cast a vote against a precipitous election, he will ensure Cadman's staff has the backup required to continue to serve the constituents of Surrey North in a manner to which they are accustomed. And he will honour Cadman's last wishes rather than "move quickly" to call a by-election.

(Carolyn Parrish, Independent MP, Mississauga-Erindale)
This letter is extraordinary on a number of levels, but her assertion that the citizens of Surrey North are (or should be) content with being "served" by Mr. Cadman's former political staff is breathtaking. I used to work on political staff in the Commons and never thought I was representing constituents. I knew I was there to represent the member of parliament; the MP being the one accountable to the people. It is called parliamentary democracy for a reason, Ms Parrish . It is not called unelected and unaccountable parliamentary staff democracy.

Of course, the real reason for the letter is self-serving. Note the bold claim that:

Only a truly elected independent, such as Cadman, can purely and completely vote the way a majority of his riding wants him to, once he's fairly sure he has a true picture of their wishes.

Don't laugh. Ms. Parrish is just working on honing her "messaging" for the next general election. She was properly potty trained in her earlier caucus voting configuration, but the unexpected solitary experience of foraging for oneself beyond the party Pale can unhinge the best MP.

Of course, Ms Parish did not always think that way. Back before being kicked out of the Liberal caucus for not being sufficiently discreet about her anti-Americanism, she was a partisan keener. Lusting for Cabinet posts will do that for many in the Commons. I expect she was no exception. Alas she lacked the royal jelly of current Cabinet luminaries as Lisa Frulla (Heritage, Status of Women), or Claudette Bradshaw (Human Resources). Never heard of them? I am truly shocked.

Her calling our American allies bastards was tolerated by Paul Martin and one speculates that stomping on a George Bush doll was okay too, as long as she was content to do it at nearly sophisticated soirees where the Liberal elites are wont to gather. But she erred by doing it on national television, where the White House staff was liable to get news feeds and see Grit feelings towards them revealed up close and in their face.

Parrish is a rube alright. Her notion that a new MP would likely be a Conservative and that this would result in that MP bringing down the government in a confidence motion is remarkable, not because it isn't true, but because she believes such an outcome would be illegitimate and a betrayal of chuck Cadman's memory.

Is she really suggesting that the only reason Conservative MPs vote as they do against this corrupt government is because of the party whip? I suppose as a former Liberal caucus member, she may be reflecting on the reasons she why she voted as she did and is projecting her experience as a Liberal onto the opposition benches.

Does she also believe that those party members who voted confidence in the government a short time ago were casting illegitimate (as in not "valid" not as in "lineage," though you would be excused for wondering) votes because they were whiprespectivee rspective party House Leaders? Just asking.

Additionally, isn't a by-election the best way of determining what the voters of Surrey North want. If the voters really don't want a general election they can elect a Liberal in the by-election can't they?

Her most absurd remark is based on fiscal rectitude. She says a by-election would be wrong because it would cost this G-8 nation, with one of the world's wealthiest economies, $250 thousand to hold. Has the Liberal/NDP budget coalition brought us to this low state? We can't afford a mere quarter million now to give the voters of Surrey North a representative in parliament?

In my view Carolyn Parrish MP is doing her best to toady favour with the Liberal Party and Paul Martin by fronting this trial balloon. Despite her ringing endorsement of the value of being an independent MP, she really must want back in the Liberal paddock quite badly.

We Have Ourselves A Real General

Be still my beating heart.

Active role for troops pushed
OTTAWA BUREAU - Toronto Star

Canada must take its fight against "detestable murderers and scumbags" to the failed states abroad where they are allowed to "spread their venom," the country's top general said yesterday.

Comparing the situation to that of the fight against Nazi Germany, a tough-talking Gen. Rick Hillier says the attacks against the London transit system just over a week ago underscore the need for Canada's military to take an active role in places like Afghanistan. "I think the London attack just tells us once more we can't let up," Hillier said during a luncheon with reporters.

He said Canada must be ready to battle "those who would help terrorists and murderers and killers like Al Qaeda ... and the Taliban who would help them regain power." Without taking action, Canada risks having that instability "come home to roost" here, said Hillier, the chief of defence staff.

Hillier made his comments just as the military gets set to take on a more dangerous role in Afghanistan. In just over a week, some 250 Edmonton-based troops will depart for Kandahar as part of a reconstruction team meant to help stabilize the southern part of the country. By February, there will be 1,500 Canadian soldiers in Kandahar. One of their duties will be the dangerous mission of chasing down Taliban extremists.

"We're actually going there to take down the folks who are trying to still blow up men and women in Afghanistan and still provide a base for an organization like Al Qaeda to grow its venom," Hillier said.

But the general warned yesterday that people should brace for injuries, perhaps even fatalities, among Canada's military and suggested that the public might be in the dark about the looming dangers of this new role. "The possibilities of taking casualties are always there ... I do think there needs to be an awareness across Canada that we're in a dangerous business," Hillier said.

And he added a plug for his troops, saying citizens need to voice their support for men and women in uniform.

Confronted with the question of whether Canada's greater visibility in Afghanistan could prompt terror attacks here, Hillier likened the atmosphere today to the mood in 1939 when Canadians were called on to fight Nazi Germany.

"Did they say `No, because we might be attacked over here if we actually go and stand up against those despicable murderous bastards'?" Hillier said." They went and did it because it was right. I think it's exactly the same thing now. We need to take a stand," he said.

He said that Canada - a member of the G-8, a flourishing Western nation - is already on the terror hit list and terrorists are out to "break our society." "It doesn't matter whether we are in Afghanistan or any place in the world. We are going to be a target in their sights," he said.

"They detest our freedoms, they detest our society, they detest our liberties," he said. "We're not going to let those radical murderers and killers rob from others and we're certainly not going to let them rob from Canada," said Hillier, who spared few adjectives in describing the terrorists.
And this quote by Gen. Hillier from the Globe & Mail is something which needed to be said. I am amazed a serving Canadian general, and CDS to boot, actually had the cojones to say it.

He stressed the new face of the Canadian Forces, which he said are now focused on the first job at hand; protecting Canadian interests at home and abroad.

"We are not the public service of Canada, we are not just another department[of government]. We are the Canadian Forces, and our job is to be able to kill people.
All over this diminished Dominion, progressives and limousine socialists are spluttering into their morning lattes and reaching for their Tums. General Hillier, has spoken the truth, as good Newfoundlanders tend to do. I will be greatly interested to see the fallout from this one.

I can guarantee you this. The men and women of the Canadian Forces, who will be the people putting their lives at risk in this new deployment, will do so now in the secure knowledge that their commander is not a civil servant at heart, but a real soldier who defines, understands and supports their mission. They already knew that, but the message from their commander is a good one, delivered at the right moment.

He is also preparing the people of Canada for the likely casualties which will arise from this mission. It is much more dangerous than current mission centred on Kabul.

As for the Liberal government and the party strategists? They just appointed a real soldier to the top job and will find it difficult to cut him loose, at least right now. We all know their milk is curdling and their lips are pursed, but they are sly enough to know that the public perceives the Liberals to be weak on defence issues (a just conclusion, if there ever was one).

General Hillier offers them political cover. They can't talk tough on terrorism without the whole country breaking into sniggers. They pray (to Saint Pollster of Spin City) that they will be political beneficiaries of General Hillier's fighting spirit.

I'll do my praying, to the real Lord of All, that our troops will get through their mission safely.

Carry the battle to the "murderers and scumbags," general. This Canadian is walking proud today. It's a nice feeling, for a change.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Petard Hoisting in the USA

I am told there is a Spanish saying which goes, "Revenge tastes sweetest when tasted cold."

Our American cousins have a great sense of humour and a possess a robust political society which is often lacking in "our home and native land." US political discourse often manifests itself in bitter and ugly political battles the likes of which would make that foul-mouthed stomper of George Bush dolls, Carolyn Parrish MP appear to be a rube (which, come to think of it, she is.) No offence to rubes.

You may be aware that the US Supreme Court recently permitted a municipality to expropriate private homes in order to facilitate a private office complex. Normally, such expropriations are undertaken in free societies only for an important public purposes, e.g., building of a new road, or dam etc. As I understand it, the Supreme Court decision cut new legal ground and seriously erodes the American constitutional protection for private property. This is serious business.

If we are responsible parents we teach our children that their decisions have consequences, with which they will have to live. Logan Darrow Clements is a responsible citizen in the process of teaching a Supreme Court justice the same lesson. It is a kind thing Clements does as it is evident that Judge Souter either missed, or ignored, this basic parental lesson when he was a child. You're never to old to learn in my view.

Movement builds to seize Souter home
If New Hampshire selectmen don't bite, ballot initiatives planned
Posted: July 11, 2005 1:00 a.m. Eastern, © 2005

Supreme Court Justice David Souter probably never expected his vote to permit a Connecticut town the power to seize the homes of citizens would come back to haunt him. But it may.

An effort by a Los Angeles advertising entrepreneur to persuade the city fathers of Weare, N.H., to turn the tables on Souter by seizing his home and building a hotel on the site is gaining steam. Logan Darrow Clements and his company, Freestar Media, are now collecting online contributions from the public to support the project.

"There's lots of work that still needs to be done to accomplish our objectives," Clements told WND. "But I am confident we can be successful. This is a way ordinary Americans can fight back - not just against Souter, but against local officials who abuse their authority and callously seize the homes of law-abiding citizens out of sheer greed."

The town of Weare has been inundated with calls in support of the proposal since WND first publicized the story of how Clements plans to turn eminent domain against one of its champions. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 two weeks ago that local towns and cities can seize homes and private businesses through eminent domain and turn the properties over to private developers for no other reason than the fact that it would result in higher tax revenues for the municipality.

...Clements wants to build "The Lost Liberty Hotel" on the property as a kind of museum commemorating the lost right to private property in America.

It seems there is no forelock tugging in Weare, New Hampshire.

Queen Defies Islamic Terrorists

The Queen defied the threat of terrorist attack yesterday to ride down the Mall in an open-top Range Rover at the head of veterans of the Second World War. Against the backdrop of the London bombings, she made her gesture in front of a crowd of 250,000 people as Britain celebrated the 60th anniversary of the end of the war. Earlier, when referring to the attacks during a speech in Horse Guards, she invoked the courage of the wartime generation.

It does not surprise me that, during the present difficult days for London, people turn to the example set by that generation of resilience, humour, sustained courage, often under conditions of great deprivation," she said.

That example and those memories should be kept alive by younger generations as they in their turn strive to keep the peace in our troubled world.
Just so!
God save the Queen!

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Homosexual School Curriculum With No Parental Opt-Out?

From Life News comes this not unexpected news. Hat tip to Left Handed Right.
B.C. Gay Couple Seeks Mandatory Homosexual School Curriculum Without Parental Opt-Out

VANCOUVER, B.C. July 11, 2005 ( A British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal is preparing to hear what pro-family and religious groups are calling a truly frightening case. Murray and Peter Corren, a B.C. gay couple, filed a complaint against the B.C. Ministry of education in 1999 alleging that the Ministry'’s curriculum didn'’t adequately “address issues of sexual orientation. That case is slated to be heard beginning today.

“"Basically, there is systemic discrimination through omission and suppression of queer issues in the whole of the curriculum," alleges Murray Corren, who is an elementary school teacher in Port Coquitlam.

What many are finding deeply disturbing, however, is that the Corren'’s are not only seeking inclusion of explicitly homosexual material in the curriculum, promoting homosexuality as a normative and safe lifestyle option, but also that they wish to ensure that the material is mandatory.

If successful, the case will ensure that parents do not retain the right to choose to pull their children from the offensive portion of the curriculum and provide yet another extraordinary exception from normal rules because it has been insisted upon by gay activists.
Where do I start? This is a logical next step in the gay activist agenda. That the proposed curriculum would run roughshod over parental rights and constitutional protections for freedom of religion and belief is obvious. Having said that, I have no confidence that human rights commissions, populated as they are with "progressive" minded zealots, will reject such outrageous demands. Let's hope I am wrong about this.

Netanya Bombing and Other Threats

We are rightly focused on the London bombing by Islamic terrorists but should not lose sight of the regular bombings ocurring elsewhere, particularly in Israel. Kateland, of The Last Amazon, has an excellent post on the subject. Here is a taste. Then go read the rest.

Islamic Jihad sent another teenage suicide bomber to strike outside a mall in Netanya, Israel yesterday killing 3 and injuring 90. This is the second successful suicide bombing inside Israel since the alleged ?period of calm? negotiated by Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.

Though Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for the attack and PA Chairman Abbas issued a strong statement condemning the attack and promising to hunt down and arrest the perpetrators of Tuesday?s attack (which seems a little rich from the man who has been actively working to integrate terrorists into his security forces) it is the statement from a Hamas spokesman from Gaza, Mushir al-Masri that I find the most telling:
"This operation is a natural response to Israeli crimes," he said. "The Zionist enemy has desecrated the Koran inside the prisons, is refusing to release the prisoners and is constantly threatening the Aksa Mosque and Jerusalem."
Kateland concludes her post with this chilling piece of news.

I never thought that it was a particular sign of good fortune for a collasped Catholic to have a Star of David craved into my door with the immortal words ?Kill the Jews? and the first few times I insisted on my landlord repairing the door but as soon as the wood fill and paint dried another Star of David would appear just as mysteriously as the last one on my door. After the third Star of David I stopped insisting that my landlord repair the door. It reminds me daily not only who my enemy is, but who my friends are as well.
Kate, please go buy a mini-cam, repair the door, call the police and await the next anti-semitic vandalism effort. It is, as you say, good to know your enemy. It is even better to put them behind bars. Such people need time for extended rest and reflection.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Protestors Walk from Mass over Comartin Sanctions

From The Black Kettle this news.

According to today's Windsor Star, at one of this past Sunday's Masses approximate thirty parishioners and supporters of NDP Windsor-Tecumseh MP Joe Comartin stood up and walked out of Holy Rosary Catholic Church in the London Diocese. Comartin himself was not in attendance at Mass said the

The cause of the unusual protest was the recent disciplining of Comartin by diocesan Bishop Fabbro for the Catholic MP's public support of same-sex marriage in complete defiance of Catholic moral teaching. Last week Bishop Fabbro issued a letter to all the priests in his diocese informing them of his decision to forbid Comartin from acting as a Catholic marriage counselor in his diocese, as well as from acting in any other public Church capacity.

"I have decided that Mr. Comartin is not to give marriage preparation sessions within this diocese, and that he is not to engage in any liturgical ministries, for example, minister of the Eucharist or reader," read Fabbro's letter.

The bishop also instructed his priests to make public the contents of his letter to their parishioners at Sunday Masses. The protestors walked out during a public reading of that letter.

And now back to something important.... the mystery of the exploding toads continues as biologists ponder the little bang theory....

An Interview with John Rhys-Davies

While we are writing and reading about the suicide of European civilization read this remarkable interview with Lord of the Rings actor John Rhys-Davies, courtesy of Either Orr to The Great Pumpkin via The Black Kettle (whew).

A tidbit to titillate.

I think that Tolkien says that some generations will be challenged. And if they do not rise to meet that challenge, they will lose their civilization. That does have a real resonance with me.

I have had the ideal background for being an actor. I have always been an outsider. I grew up in colonial Africa. And I remember in 1955, it would have to be somewhere between July the 25th when the school holiday started and September the 18th when the holidays ended.

My father took me down to the quayside in Dar-Es-Salaam harbor. And he pointed out a dhow in the harbor and he said, "You see that dhow there? Twice a year it comes down from Aden. It stops here and goes down [South]. On the way down it's got boxes of machinery and goods. On the way back up it?s got two or three little black boys on it. Now, those boys are slaves. And the United Nations will not let me do anything about it."

The conversation went on. "Look, boy. There is not going to be a World War between Russia and the United. The next World War will be between Islam and
the West."
This is 1955! I said to him, "Dad, you're nuts! The Crusades have been over for hundreds of years!"

And he said, "Well, I know, but militant Islam is on the rise again. And you will see it in your lifetime."

One of the great disgraces of Islam is its modern day tolerance and practice of slavery. One of our great shames is that we allow them to get away with it.

Europe and the Future

As usual, Mark Steyn writing in the Telegraph "My virility doesn't matter - the EU's does" brings us great wisdom laced with a glittering wit. He speaks of the great European tragedy, a prolonged suicide of a whole civilization, which to my mind may well be unprecedented in history. Well worth a read.

Every day you get ever more poignant glimpses of the Euro-future, such as it is. In East Germany, whose rural communities are dying, village sewer systems are having a tough time adjusting to the lack of use. Populations have fallen so dramatically that there are too few people flushing to keep the flow of waste moving. Traditionally, government infrastructure expenditure arises from increased demand. In this case, the sewer lines are having to be narrowed at great cost in order to cope with dramatically decreased demand.

There's simply no precedent for managed decline in societies as advanced as Europe's, but the early indications are that it's going to be expensive: environmentally speaking, it's a question of sustainable lack of growth. Listen
to the European political class defend the status quo on the Common Agricultural
Policy, and then tell yourself these are the folks you want tackling the real crises just around the corner.

For Britain and Ireland, two relatively dynamic provinces of a moribund continent , there are only two options: share the pain and expense and societal upheaval, or decide that you're not that "European" after all and begin the process of detachment or at least semi-detachment. When the Continentals bemoan "Anglo-Saxon" capitalism, they have a point. Of the 20 economies with the biggest GDP per capita, no fewer than 11 are current or former realms of Her Britannic Majesty.

Admittedly, some of the wealthiest turf is the pinprick colonial tax havens - Bermuda, Guernsey, the Caymans. But, if you eliminate populations under 10 million, the GDP per capita Top Five are, in order, America, Canada, Australia, Belgium and the United Kingdom. And if you make it territories with over 20 million, the Top Four is an Anglosphere sweep.

In other words, the ability to generate wealth among large populations does indeed seem to be an "Anglo-Saxon" thing. That being so, which is more likely? That Blair will transform a Europe antipathetic to Anglo-Saxon ways? Or that Europe will drag its Anglo-Saxons down with it?

I recommend you go read the whole article and I recommend that, if you have not aready done so, you make Mr. Steyn a regular read.

The Name of Our Enemy

Hat tip to the Drudge Report. The Telegraph has a story (here) in which Tom Leonard claims the BBC is editing out word "terrorist" out of stories involving the London transit system attacks. This is being done in accordance with the BBC guidelines for such things, says Leonard because, "the word 'terrorist' itself can be a barrier rather than an aid to understanding" and its use should be "avoided." They recommend the use of the word "bomber."

I actually agree with the editors that agree the use of the word "terrorist" can be misleading and be a barrier to fully understanding the circumstances of the bombings. That is why I call the "perpetrators" Muslim terrorists, or Islamofascists, or Islamic Jihadis. I think that is much clearer, don't you?

To those who say that the terrorists do not represent Islam because Islam is a religion of peace, I note that the people detonating these bombs sure as hell ain't Presbyterians. They may not be "good" Muslims, but Muslims they are. In fact, arguments can be mustered that they represent the orthodox variety of Islam, not the mainstream.

This is not to suggest that the majority of Muslims in the West like, or support, the terror activity, but many do and it is best to name the enemy. Your chances of dealing effectively with "the bombers" are greatly enhanced if you do and we Canadians will not confuse our sworn enemy with a certain prairie Canadian football team.

Monday, July 11, 2005

The Politics of Sex

Hat tip to Neale News.

Hockey mom wants daughter allowed in boys' change room
B.C. mother takes case to human rights tribunal

Lori Anne Charlton
The Vancouver Province
Monday, July 11, 2005

VANCOUVER - A Lumby, B.C., mother believes her daughter got the short end of the hockey stick while she was a member of the town's bantam house team, thanks to a B.C. Amateur Hockey Association policy requiring male and female
players to change in separate rooms.

Jane Emlyn says female minor hockey players' rights are violated when they're forced to use separate changing rooms.

She's presenting her case to a mediator from the Human Rights Tribunal this morning, facing off against representatives from the B.C. amateur hockey association and the Lumby Minor Hockey Association at the Vernon courthouse.

"There's a lot of girls that play, and I think the majority of them see this as discrimination," Ms. Emlyn said.

A similar policy was introduced in New Brunswick last October, after the Human Rights Commission ruled a 14-year-old female player had her rights violated when she was forced to change separately.

I am the father of an eleven year old who plays goalie in his house league. Fortunately, given the obvious trajectory of this situation, the league in which he plays does not allow girls. I do not believe that fourteen year old girls have a civil right to change in a locker room with fourteen year old boys.

To hold that they do, as the the Human Rights Commission in New Brunswick apparently has, is to debase the concept of rights and to completely ignore the real differences which exist between adolescent boys and girls. Not to mention raging hormones.

The father of one of her female teammates, who asked not to be named, said he's uncomfortable with the idea of his daughter changing in front of a group of boys at this age without a strict policy.

"I know what boys are like at that age," he said.
Yes indeed. The voice of sanity mired in a gooey miasma of selfish zealotry.

I wonder if Ms Emlyn will feel outrage if one or more of the boys is found ogling her daughter. Will she complain to the human rights commission about that. You have three seconds to come up the answer .... three ... two ... one .... time's up.

Ms. Emlyn said most of the youngsters on the team say they're fine with mixed changing rooms, but she has received several anonymous e-mails condemning her petition.
Youngsters! Fourteen year old boys are not "youngsters," they're young men, not all of whom are determined to turn away from the world and pursue a life of strict celibacy in a remote monastery once they finish schooling. Some will, no doubt, entertain other thoughts and aspirations.

Adolescent boys views on coed locker rooms are somewhat predictable. Let's take a straw poll guys. Those in favour of getting the chance to ogle Jewel in the locker room say aye. Not so loud lads! There are noise bylaws in this town.

She's also felt a strain in relationships in her small, North Okanagan home town, 25 kilometres east of Vernon. Lumby has been known for its strong, tight-knit hockey community since the early 1900s.

"It's silly that I'm even having to fight this, actually," Ms. Emlyn said.

No Ms Emlyn, it is not silly. What is silly is your pursuing it. The end result of this sort of thing is that normal reasonable parents will resist opening their sons' hockey leagues up to allow girls to participate. Seeing the end result, I know Lady Mad and I will resist the idea, should some twit ever broach the subject locally.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Pass the Brown Sauce Brother

What I post below gives me no pleasure whatsoever. I post it because we must learn about our enemy or perish.

Terror on the dole
By David Cohen, Evening

Four young British Muslims in their twenties - a social worker, an IT specialist,a security guard and a financial adviser - occupy a table at a fast-food chicken restaurant in Luton. Perched on their plastic chairs, wolfing down their dinner,they seem just ordinary young men. Yet out of their mouths pour heated words of revolution.

"As far as I'm concerned, when they bomb London, the bigger the better," says Abdul Haq, the social worker. "I know it's going to happen because Sheikh bin Laden said so. Like Bali, like Turkey, like Madrid - I pray for it, I look forward to the day."

"Pass the brown sauce, brother," says Abu Malaahim, the IT specialist, devouring his chicken and chips.

"I agree with you, brother," says Abu Yusuf, the earnest-looking financial adviser sitting opposite. "I would like to see the Mujahideen coming into London and killing thousands, whether with nuclear weapons or germ warfare. And if they need a safehouse, they can stay in mine - and if they need some fertiliser [for a bomb], I'll tell them where to get it."

His friend, Abu Musa, the security guard, smiles radiantly. "It will be a day of joy for me," he adds, speaking with a slight lisp.

As they talk, a man with a bushy beard, dressed in a jacket emblazoned with the word "Jihad", stands and watches over them, handing around cups of steaming hot coffee. His real name is Ishtiaq Alamgir, but he goes by his adopted name, Sayful Islam, meaning "Sword of Islam". He is the 24-year-old leader of the Luton branch of al-Muhajiroun, an extremist Muslim group with about 800 members countrywide, who regard Osama bin Laden as their hero.

The above is what is known as a fifth column. They are the enemy within and it is these who we need to identify and deal with. They are not the product of foreign poverty and colonial oppression as the leftist would have it. They are British with good jobs. They are brought up among us with all the freedom and liberty we possess here in the West. It is that freedom and liberty they hate the most. Remember this when you read those cretinous apologists for jihad who blame the terror on us and on poverty and exclusion. If these such are excluded it is a self-exclusion based on their hatred of us.

"The mosques say one thing to the public, and something else to us. Let's just say that the face you see and the face we see are two different faces," says Abdul Haq. "Believe me," adds Musa, "behind closed doors, there are no moderate Muslims."

They also mock the idea that they are attracted to al-Muhajiroun because they have suffered alienation from white society. "Do we look like scum?" they ask. "Do we look illiterate?"

As they call for the bill, Abu Malaahim flicks open his 3G mobile phone and, with a satisfied grin, displays the image, downloaded from the internet, of an American Humvee burning in Iraq.Abu Yusuf says: "That's nothing. I downloaded the picture of the four burnt Americans hanging from the bridge." It's oneupmanship, al-Muhajiroun style.

Sayful, the only married one in the group, prepares to go home to his wife and children. Before he departs, he says he has a message to deliver.

"I want to warn that the police raids - if repeated - could create a bad situation. "Islam is not like Christianity, where they turn the other cheek. If they raid our homes, it could lead to the covenant of security being broken.

"Islam allows us to retaliate. That would include" - he tugs his "Jihad" coat tight against the night air - "by violent means."

Read it all. It is the face of evil and it is our sworn enemy.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Blimey! I didn't expect the Spanish Inquisition.

Another Catholic member of parliament has been sanctioned by his bishop for voting in favour of same-sex marriage.

Hat tip to Neale News. From the Canadian Press and Windsor Star via today's National Post we learn from Brent Forster the following.

LONDON, Ont. -- A New Democrat MP has been barred from involvement in church activities by a southwestern Ontario Catholic diocese for supporting
same-sex marriage.

Bishop Ronald Fabbro of the Diocese of London admonished Windsor-Tecumseh MP Joe Comartin in a July 6 letter to priests, saying "a person who does not accept Catholic teaching on fundamental matters is disqualified from acting on behalf of the church in a public capacity." Fabbro said the measure would remain in effect until Comartin has "a change of mind" in using the term marriage with reference to homosexual unions.
Rather than accept his bishop's admonition, Mr. Comartin defended his actions which were clearly contrary to Catholic doctrine on marriage. He is hurt by Bishop Fabbro's action.

Comartin had said he hoped that one day the Catholic Church would recognize same-sex marriages, noting the issue is about love and all couples being treated equally." My recent comments expressed my sincere hope that someday the leadership of the Catholic Church would embrace a fuller sense of inclusion," he said in a release after hearing of Fabbro's letter.
You see, for Mr. Comartin, it is the Church that is at fault for not embracing homosexuality. He is blameless in this affair. And no, it is not just about love. Were it so Comartin would have to advocate siblings marrying each other and mothers marrying their sons, etc. Love is part, but not all, of "it."

He added that "the actions of Bishop Fabbro have deeply hurt and saddened myself and my family." Comartin has been an altar server, administered the eucharist and taken part in fundraising projects for the church. "These parish activities have been an important and meaningful part of my life," he said.
I wonder if Mr. Comartin ever gave a thought to the hurt his actions caused among faithful Catholics who looked to him, and other Catholic parliamentarians to act in accordance with the magisterial teaching of the Church when faced with votes pertaining to faith and morals. Our disappointment is great and our pain is profound.

Comartin also recently taught marriage preparation courses with his wife, but will no longer be able to do so.
The sanction applied by Bishop Fabbro is actually quite mild under the circumstances. He will still be able to receive communion. He just won't be able to give marriage preparation courses. Given his evident lack of assent to Catholic teaching on marriage his unfitness to give such instruction ought to be self evident to him. Not so.

Despite the rift between Comartin and the church, he remains hopeful of a resolution. "I hope Bishop Fabbro will reconsider his actions," Comartin said. "In this spirit, I welcome a dialogue with the diocese, and will strive to not only provide a fuller understanding of my intentions but also do my best to understand Bishop Fabbro's intentions."

A more honest man would acknowledge that he placed his loyalty to his political party above his loyalty to the Church. His views on this matter are not Catholic, but he is spinning the sanctions as being the result of a lack of dialogue on the part of the diocese and a failure of the bishop to understand his intentions. I think his bishop has an excellent grasp of Mr. Comartin's intentions.

A dialogue would be a good idea and ought to have taken place before the vote in parliament. Joe Comartin is a man desperately in need of catechesis.

One small suggestion Joe. It is not Bishop Fabbro's intentions that are at issue. Those are clear. He has a duty, as a successor of the apostles, to help you regain your spiritual footing as a Catholic and is trying to do so.

It is your duty as a Catholic (as it is for all of us) to listen carefully, to learn the teaching of the Church, and to formally assent to them. Your intentions, while important, are secondary to the truth.

And Joe. Leave the hurt feelings at home and grow up. It does you no credit to play the victim.

You aren't.