Thursday, August 28, 2008

Nancy Pelosi Keeps on Digging

Kathleen Gilbert of Lifesite News reports that Speaker of the US House of Representatives has backpedaled on her statement to NBC's Tom Brokow (Meet the Press) on when human life begins - thereby defending her pro-abortion views while attempting to maintain the political gloss that she is in union with the Church. The nub of her earlier statement is as follows.
"I would say that as an ardent, practicing Catholic, this is an issue that I have studied for a long time," she said. "

And what I know is, over the centuries, the doctors of the church have not been able to make that definition. And Senator - St. Augustine said at three months. We don't know."
The 10 regular readers of this blog know that John the Mad spent five minutes researching statements from the fathers of the Church correcting her spurious assertion. The results are in a post below.

Her statement created a large negative response from Catholic bishops, 18 ardent and practicing Catholic congresspeople, ordinary ardent and practicing Catholics, and ardent and practicing gay, lesbian, and transgendered Catholics ....

(oops sorry, I got carried away with post-modern rhetorical bafflespeak here .... please delete the latter three cossetted and protected special interest groups. Certain of their ardent and practicing members may take offence at JtM including them and thereby drag JtM before any of the plethora of human rights commissions operating in Canada outside of the principles of freedom and common law my ancestors fought to protect. Being a family man, I simply don't have a spare $100 grand to spend defending my freedom of speech from ardent and practicing zealots who may wish to complain to the modern Canadian Star Chambers. ...... but back to the brouhaha at hand .....)

Ms Gilbert writes:

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 27, 2008 ( - A spokeswoman for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi defended the speaker's position as a "pro-abortion Catholic", not because the Church is unclear on when life begins, as earlier stated, but because Catholics routinely contravene "clear Catholic teaching" against abortion.

In a statement praising Pelosi's appreciation for "the sanctity of the family," Brenda Daly, speaking for Pelosi, said, "While Catholic teaching is clear that life begins at conception, many Catholics do not ascribe to that view."

In the controversial interview on NBC's Meet The Press that spawned Daly's statement, Pelosi had said, "The Doctors of the Church have not been able to make that definition [of when life begins]," and called it "an issue of controversy" throughout the history of the Church. "St. Augustine said at three months. We don't know," said Pelosi.

Brenda Daly's statement says that Pelosi is not justified in her pro-abortion stance due to vague Church teaching, but on the basis that many other "Catholics" also violate Church teaching.

(bolding is mine)

Frankly, my advice to Ms Pelosi is to stop digging. After all many Catholics believe that it gets mighty warm down where she seems determined to go.

Late Breaking News!
John the Mad has learned that Congresswoman Pelosi's office has just released a list of things that she, as an ardent and practicing Catholic believes is okay for other ardent and practicing Catholics to do, even though the Catholic Church has consistently held them to be impermissible for two millennia.

Brenda Daly, speaking on behalf of Congressperson Pelosi, says the list was carefully compiled after 24 hours of intensive research by the Speaker of the House using her new and innovative theological test for sin called "What do many other Catholics violate in Church teaching" and the Washington Post newspaper.

According to Brenda Daly, Ms Pelosi says she first used this test as a precocious six year old when her mother told her she had to go to bed at 8 p.m. She recalls that her brilliant retort to her mother was a vestigial harbinger of her brilliant recent spiritual insight on the matter of abortion. "Why do I have to go to bed now, Mom," she remembers whining. "All my Catholic friends get to go to bed at 8:30."

Ms. Daly said that the Speaker, as an ardent and practicing Catholic fully intends to use this novel defence of "Other Catholics do it" when standing before the throne of God at her last judgement. The brilliance of the Speaker's theological insight speaks for itself, said Ms Daly. It's a wonder Saint Thomas Aquinas didn't think of it.

The list of newly allowed practices for ardent and practicing Catholics is as follows.
  1. abortion
  2. euthanasia
  3. same sex marriage
  4. idolatry
  5. blasphemy
  6. taking the Lord's name in vain
  7. elder and child abuse
  8. assault
  9. murder
  10. coveting thy neighbours goods
"Smoking, bottled water, drilling for oil in the arctic, owning a handgun and coveting John Edwards neighbour's wife will remain on the list of prohibited activities for ardent and practicing Catholics," said the Speaker's spin doctor. "Ms Pelosi will not vote in favour of and congressional bill that favours these matters. There have to be some standards, after all."

Monday, August 25, 2008

Chicken Neck Wringing by Human Rights Commissars

Ah, dear reader, things get more and more tawdry with every passing week. I am the son and grandson of men who went to war with the Canadian army and air force respectively (WWI and WWII) to fight for our freedoms. In my youth I had the great honour to receive a commission from HMQ, who for some odd reason had the notion to "repose especial trust in my loyalty, courage and integrity," which merely goes to prove that there is simply no accounting for the whims of royalty or their Governors General (in my case The Right Honourable Roland Michener).

When made a second lieutenant, back when men were still men and sheep were nervous, I was a rather pathetic and spindly specimen of the profession of arms- so much so - I kid you not - that a doctor of medicine, in good standing with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, after appropriate and solemn reflection, recommended I quaff copious quantities of brewed hops and malt every day in order to gain weight. I followed his advice. It took diligence I tell you. But I digress .............

The point of this post has to do with the odious institutions in Canada that are doing their level bureaucratic best to strangle freedom of speech in what Mark Steyn (himself a target of the these modern Star Chambers) calls our "demented Dominion." My forebears would be shocked and appalled at our negligence in defending our freedoms against all enemies external and internal.

To the point. My Saturday National Post had this to say about that.

A group of U. S. professors launched a campaign this week protesting plans by a prominent political science organization to hold its annual conference in Toronto next year, claiming that Canada's restrictions on certain forms of speech puts controversial academics at risk of being prosecuted.

Bradley Watson, professor of American and Western political thought at Pennsylvania's St. Vincent College, said he will present a petition calling for the American Political Science Association (APSA) to re-evaluate its selection of Toronto for its 2009 conference at this year's annual meeting, taking place over the Labour Day weekend in Boston.

His protest has garnered support from dozens of professors across the United States, including prominent scholars such as Princeton University legal philosopher Robert P. George and Harvard University's Harvey Mansfield.

"Our belief is that the APSA should choose its sites carefully, with particular regard for questions of freedom of speech and conscience," Mr. Watson told the National Post by e-mail. "We therefore believe Canada to be a problematic destination."

Mr. Watson said that professors signing the petition are concerned that recent human rights commission investigations into Maclean's and Western Standard magazines over articles concerning Islam, and the conviction of pastor Stephen Boisson, who was ordered by Alberta's human rights tribunal in May to cease publicizing criticisms of homosexuality, suggest that professors risk being chilled from discussing important academic subjects, or ending up in legal trouble. Mr. Watson said he plans to distribute hundreds of buttons to attendees at the Boston conference reading "Toronto 2009, Non!"

Canada's human rights chickens are coming home to roost and like most chicken coops the stench from the coops is ripe. The smell extends south to our southern neighbours who, while having their own challenges in dealing with politically correct claptrap, have a constitution that unambiguously defends the right of free speech. Here we piously affirm we have the right of free speech, but then immediately state that it is subject to certain necessary restrictions (freedom is not unrestricted - subject to such reasonable limitations etc. etc.) , before proceeding to gut the freedom it of any real content. It is what happens when you treat a seminal constitutional document like the Charter of Rights and Freedoms as not a written set of political guarantees, but as a living tree, necessitating regular applications of ideological legal fertilizer.

Sir Winston Churchill said to the Canadian Parliament in December 1941:
When I warned them [the French] that Britain would fight on alone whatever they did, their generals told their prime minister and his divided Cabinet, "In three weeks England will have her neck wrung like a chicken." Some chicken; some neck.
What Petain's generals of collaborationist France predicted in 1940, and what Adoph Hitler's evil legions failed to accomplish thanks to men like my father, the odious apparatchiks of Canada's human rights commissions are achieving through stealth and ideological zealousness. Unaccountable human rights commissars are succeeding in wringing the neck of the chicken.

American political scientists are right to be afraid of speaking their minds in Canada.

Several professors in the working group behind the protest "have written in areas that seem particularly disfavoured by the Canadian legal establishment," Mr. Watson said. "We are uncertain of the extent of the legal jeopardy that APSA members might place themselves in should they make public arguments in Canada, or post those arguments online, concerning hot-button issues like homosexuality, same-sex marriage, or the nature of the Islamist threat to Western civilization."

The American Political Science Association, whose members include both American and Canadian academics, is the oldest and largest organization of political science professors. Next month's annual meeting, expected to draw roughly 7,000 political scientists, will be its 104th. The program includes such discussions as Terrorism and Human Rights; Varying Perspectives on Same-Sex Marriage; and Missing Alliances and (Un)expected Transformations in the Politics of Islam.

How much longer will Canadians put up with these modern inquisitions?

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
Canadian Army

Nancy Pelosi and Camel Farts

(Photo of U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, acting the smarmy Catholic hypocrite - from the Curt Jester blog )

In an appearance on the NBC program Meet the Press (hat tip to Lifesite News) on Sunday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a self-professed Catholic, denied that the Catholic Church condemns abortion.

Referring to Barack Obama's now-notorious answer to Pastor Rick Warren to the question of when life begins, Meet the Press moderator Tom Brokaw asked Pelosi, "Senator Obama saying the question of when life begins is above his pay grade…If he were to come to you and say, 'Help me out here, Madame Speaker. When does life begin?' what would you tell him?"

Pelosi responded by sidestepping the question, appealing to her Catholic faith as the source of her uncertainty.

"I would say that as an ardent, practicing Catholic, this is an issue that I have studied for a long time," she said. "And what I know is, over the centuries, the doctors of the church have not been able to make that definition. And Senator - St. Augustine said at three months. We don't know."

Pelosi then said that in her view the question of when life begins is a non-issue in the debate on abortion.

"The point is, is that it shouldn't have an impact on the woman's right to choose. Roe v. Wade talks about very clear definitions of when the child - first trimester, certain considerations; second trimester; not so third trimester. There's very clear distinctions. This isn't about abortion on demand, it's about a careful, careful consideration of all factors and - to - that a woman has to make with her doctor and her god."

Brokaw continued to press Pelosi on the question, observing, "The Catholic Church at the moment feels very strongly that it… begins at the point of conception."

Pelosi again side-stepped the question, suggesting that the Church's current position is only a recent position and that "over the history of the church, this is an issue of controversy."

Pelosi is either very ignorant of Catholic teaching on this subject, or she is lying through her teeth. You choose. I suspect that in choosing between these two options you no doubt take into account that politicians are as pure as the driven snow in all public utterances. We know that. For sure. No lying, no obfuscation, no prevarication, no comments that appear to emerge as the aroma emerging from the south end of a camel walking north.

St. Augustine was speculating on when "ensoulment" took place, not whether abortion was permissable. As explained by Brother Andre Marie M.I.C.M:

Ensoulment” is the word which describes the point at which the body of the conceptus is said to be informed by a human soul. (The notion of a living being having “no soul” is a philosophical oxymoron, since the soul is the principle of life in a material being.) There are two basic theories of ensoulment. The first is called the “immediate animation, immediate ensoulment theory”; the second, the “immediate animation, delayed ensoulment theory” (also called the “serial ensoulment theory”). As the names suggest, the former asserts that, at the very moment of animation (when life begins), the newly conceived human is animated by a rational soul; while the latter holds that the human soul’s informing of the new body is delayed. This latter theory further holds that there is a progression from vegetative to animal to human soul as the principle of animation. Common in the middle ages, the theory was based on Aristotelian biology and is untenable considering all that is presently known from the empirical sciences. Many learned Catholic authors of the ages of Faith held this theory and advanced it in their writings because it was the accepted biology of the day.

The issue comes into the abortion debate largely by way of abortion advocates advancing the notion that, since men like St. Thomas Aquinas did not believe a human soul actually animated the newly-conceived body for a number of weeks, Catholics are hypocritical for opposing abortion on the grounds that it kills an innocent human being. Of course, this is in itself a species of hypocrisy, given that advances in the sciences of fetology [sic] and embryology (as well as genetics) have undone the earlier theory. The abortion advocate using this argument generally presents himself as an “open-minded” individual of a broad scientific culture (one who is “reasonable” as opposed to “dogmatic”), but, by advocating the delayed ensoulment theory, he falls into a senseless retrogression to primitive biology.

Among those who have recently revisited the delayed ensoulment theory are the liberal Jesuit moralist Joseph Donceel and the feminist ideologue, Rosemary Reuther.

And more recently it appears we can add to the list of delayed ensoulment acolytes Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi.

Here are some citations from Catholic Answers pertaining to the actual teaching on abortion from today back to the earliest days of the Church:
Thus, in 1995 Pope John Paul II declared that the Church’s teaching on abortion "is unchanged and unchangeable. Therefore, by the authority which Christ conferred upon Peter and his successors . . . I declare that direct abortion, that is, abortion willed as an end or as a means, always constitutes a grave moral disorder, since it is the deliberate killing of an innocent human being. This doctrine is based upon the natural law and upon the written word of God, is transmitted by the Church’s tradition and taught by the ordinary and universal magisterium. No circumstance, no purpose, no law whatsoever can ever make licit an act which is intrinsically illicit, since it is contrary to the law of God which is written in every human heart, knowable by reason itself, and proclaimed by the Church" (Evangelium Vitae 62).

The early Church Fathers agreed. Fortunately, abortion, like all sins, is forgivable [forgivable, not permissible - JtM] ; and forgiveness is as close as the nearest confessional.

The Didache

"The second commandment of the teaching: You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not seduce boys. You shall not commit fornication. You shall not steal. You shall not practice magic. You shall not use potions. You shall not procure [an] abortion, nor destroy a newborn child" (Didache 2:1–2 [A.D. 70]).

The Letter of Barnabas

"The way of light, then, is as follows. If anyone desires to travel to the appointed place, he must be zealous in his works. The knowledge, therefore, which is given to us for the purpose of walking in this way, is the following. . . . Thou shalt not slay the child by procuring abortion; nor, again, shalt thou destroy it after it is born" (Letter of Barnabas 19 [A.D. 74]).

The Apocalypse of Peter

"And near that place I saw another strait place . . . and there sat women. . . . And over against them many children who were born to them out of due time sat crying. And there came forth from them rays of fire and smote the women in the eyes. And these were the accursed who conceived and caused abortion" (The Apocalypse of Peter 25 [A.D. 137]).


"What man of sound mind, therefore, will affirm, while such is our character, that we are murderers?
. . . [W]hen we say that those women who use drugs to bring on abortion commit murder, and will have to give an account to God for the abortion, on what principle should we commit murder? For it does not belong to the same person to regard the very fetus in the womb as a created being, and therefore an object of God’s care, and when it has passed into life, to kill it; and not to expose an infant, because those who expose them are chargeable with child-murder, and on the other hand, when it has been reared to destroy it" (A Plea for the Christians 35 [A.D. 177]).


"In our case, a murder being once for all forbidden, we may not destroy even the fetus in the womb, while as yet the human being derives blood from the other parts of the body for its sustenance. To hinder a birth is merely a speedier man-killing; nor does it matter whether you take away a life that is born, or destroy one that is coming to birth. That is a man which is going to be one; you have the fruit already in its seed" (Apology 9:8 [A.D. 197]).

"Among surgeons’ tools there is a certain instrument, which is formed with a nicely-adjusted flexible frame for opening the uterus first of all and keeping it open; it is further furnished with an annular blade, by means of which the limbs [of the child] within the womb are dissected with anxious but unfaltering care; its last appendage being a blunted or covered hook, wherewith the entire fetus is extracted by a violent delivery.

"There is also [another instrument in the shape of] a copper needle or spike, by which the actual death is managed in this furtive robbery of life: They give it, from its infanticide function, the name of embruosphaktes, [meaning] "the slayer of the infant," which of course was alive. . . .

"[The doctors who performed abortions] all knew well enough that a living being had been conceived, and [they] pitied this most luckless infant state, which had first to be put to death, to escape being tortured alive" (The Soul 25 [A.D. 210]).

"Now we allow that life begins with conception because we contend that the soul also begins from conception; life taking its commencement at the same moment and place that the soul does" (ibid., 27).

"The law of Moses, indeed, punishes with due penalties the man who shall cause abortion [Ex. 21:22–24]" (ibid., 37).

Minucius Felix

"There are some [pagan] women who, by drinking medical preparations, extinguish the source of the future man in their very bowels and thus commit a parricide before they bring forth. And these things assuredly come down from the teaching of your [false] gods. . . . To us [Christians] it is not lawful either to see or hear of homicide" (Octavius 30 [A.D. 226]).


"Women who were reputed to be believers began to take drugs to render themselves sterile, and to bind themselves tightly so as to expel what was being conceived, since they would not, on account of relatives and excess wealth, want to have a child by a slave or by any insignificant person. See, then, into what great impiety that lawless one has proceeded, by teaching adultery and murder at the same time!" (Refutation of All Heresies [A.D. 228]).

Council of Ancyra

"Concerning women who commit fornication, and destroy that which they have conceived, or who are employed in making drugs for abortion, a former decree excluded them until the hour of death, and to this some have assented. Nevertheless, being desirous to use somewhat greater lenity, we have ordained that they fulfill ten years [of penance], according to the prescribed degrees" (canon 21 [A.D. 314]).

Basil the Great

"Let her that procures abortion undergo ten years’ penance, whether the embryo were perfectly formed, or not" (First Canonical Letter, canon 2 [A.D. 374]).

"He that kills another with a sword, or hurls an axe at his own wife and kills her, is guilty of willful murder; not he who throws a stone at a dog, and unintentionally kills a man, or who corrects one with a rod, or scourge, in order to reform him, or who kills a man in his own defense, when he only designed to hurt him. But the man, or woman, is a murderer that gives a philtrum, if the man that takes it dies upon it; so are they who take medicines to procure abortion; and so are they who kill on the highway, and rapparees" (ibid., canon 8).

John Chrysostom

"Wherefore I beseech you, flee fornication. . . . Why sow where the ground makes it its care to destroy the fruit?—where there are many efforts at abortion?—where there is murder before the birth? For even the harlot you do not let continue a mere harlot, but make her a murderess also. You see how drunkenness leads to prostitution, prostitution to adultery, adultery to murder; or rather to a something even worse than murder. For I have no name to give it, since it does not take off the thing born, but prevents its being born. Why then do thou abuse the gift of God, and fight with his laws, and follow after what is a curse as if a blessing, and make the chamber of procreation a chamber for murder, and arm the woman that was given for childbearing unto slaughter? For with a view to drawing more money by being agreeable and an object of longing to her lovers, even this she is not backward to do, so heaping upon thy head a great pile of fire. For even if the daring deed be hers, yet the causing of it is thine" (Homilies on Romans 24 [A.D. 391]).


"I cannot bring myself to speak of the many virgins who daily fall and are lost to the bosom of the Church, their mother. . . . Some go so far as to take potions, that they may insure barrenness, and thus murder human beings almost before their conception. Some, when they find themselves with child through their sin, use drugs to procure abortion, and when, as often happens, they die with their offspring, they enter the lower world laden with the guilt not only of adultery against Christ but also of suicide and child murder" (Letters 22:13 [A.D. 396]).

The Apostolic Constitutions

"Thou shalt not use magic. Thou shalt not use witchcraft; for he says, ‘You shall not suffer a witch to live’ [Ex. 22:18]. Thou shall not slay thy child by causing abortion, nor kill that which is begotten. . . . [I]f it be slain, [it] shall be avenged, as being unjustly destroyed" (Apostolic Constitutions 7:3 [A.D. 400]).
The historical Catholic doctrinal record is clear. Abortion has never, ever, been allowed by the Church - even when there were arguments, based on incorrect, primitive human biology, about when the soul enters into the picture.

You may well believe Pelosi when she says that "As an ardent practising Catholic, this is an issue I have studied for a long time." It took me less than five minutes to Google some of the the actual doctrinal positions on "this issue.

One more thing. She describes herself as an ardent practicing Catholic. Yowie! No Catholic I know worth their salt would presume to use the word "ardent" to describe their faith.

Sorry folks, the evidence is clear. What we have here is the fragrance of the south end of a VIP Democratic camel walking north.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Wherein Freedoms of Religion & Conscience Are Abolished

Jeroen Bosch (Here: “Hell” from the tryptich “Garden of delights”)

I am now convinced that draconian powers granted to human rights commissions, the disregard of due process allowed the accused and the politically correct mentality of the commission staff constitute a grave threat to the human rights of Canadians.

Any reasonable person observing the auto da fey proceedings against Maclean''s magazine (referencing Mark Steyn's book America Alone) replete with a drive by smear by Ontario's Human Rights Czar Barbara Hall, the undemocratic silencing of Pastor Steve Boisson, the sordid and costly persecution by process of Father Alphonse De Valk at Catholic Insight magazine, must understand something is seriously amiss.

Now we have the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons (OCPS), the governing body for medical doctors in the Province of Ontario, considering adoptimg a new policy, based on case law brought to us by our unelected, unaccountable judiciary and the newly expanded mandate of the Ontario Human Rights Commission brought to us by the elected government of the province.

According to Lifesite News:

"Refusal on conscientious or religious grounds to refer a woman for an abortion could be deemed professional misconduct under this new policy," said Dr. Will Johnston, president of Canadian Physicians for Life. Johnston was describing the likely outcome of a draft policy of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario for which the public comment period officially ended today.

How very totalitarian. And how consistent with the mentality underlying human rights commissions. Behold our brave new world where the most profound human rights are routinely violated by the very body named to protect them.

Here is the proposed OCPS policy (hat tip to Lifesite News). An excerpt.

ii) Moral or Religious Beliefs

If physicians have moral or religious beliefs which affect or may affect the provision of medical services, the College advises physicians to proceed cautiously.

Personal beliefs and values and cultural and religious practices are central to the lives of physicians and their patients. However, as a physician’s responsibility is to place the needs of the patient first, there will be times when it may be necessary for physicians to set aside their personal beliefs in order to ensure that patients or potential patients are provided with the medical treatment and

services they require.

Physicians should be aware that decisions to restrict medical services offered, to accept individuals as patients or to end physician-patient relationships that are based on moral or religious belief may contravene the Code, and/or constitute professional misconduct.

A bit later the draft policy has this to offer.

Within the Code, there is no defence for refusing to provide a service on the basis of one of the prohibited grounds. This means that a physician who refuses to provide a service or refuses to accept a patient on the basis of a prohibited ground such as sex or sexual orientation may be acting contrary to the Code, even if the refusal is based on the physician’s moral or religious belief.5

And what is note 5 at the end of this excerpt? It is this.

5. This could occur if the physician’s decision to refuse to provide a service, though motivated by religious belief, has the effect of denying an individual access to medical services on one of the protected grounds. For example, a physician who is opposed to same sex procreation for religious reasons and therefore refuses to refer a homosexual couple for fertility treatment may be

in breach of the Code.

We are hurtling over the precipice without even realizing it is there. There is none so blind as them that will not see.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Maurice Strong speaks the party line

I picked up my copy of MacLean's Magazine at the end of a shortened but very busy week at work. After supper and fortified with a decent Sicilian wine (2004 vintage), I turned to an article at random to find myself reading an article written ostensibly by Maurice Strong (see photo), the well known Canadian champagne socialist, multi-millionaire, and now fully revealed, Chinese Communist Party fellow traveller. Oh yes. He is a mentor to former Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin.

On reflection however, I came to the conclusion that Comrade Strong's piece was really ghost written by a gaggle of Chinese communist party communications flacks undertaking damage control for the public relations fiasco leading up to the Peking Olympics.

I accept that my conclusion was driven by drink. I am a Celt after all and a long time civil servant to boot, so I am therefore, familiar with the effects of drunkenness and political spin on public policy matters. I accept that Maurice Strong may well have written it. His agitprop is entirely consistent with the plethora of crap written throughout the 20th century by those whom Vladimir Lenin called "useful idiots of the West." His defense of evil is an ignoble, but unfortunately all too common, tradition with those on the left.

Here is the great man.
To be sure, this process has been a difficult and even painful one for many, but both Chinese and Tibetans continue to learn and to accommodate the changes that will enable Tibet to retain its distinctive cultural and religious heritage while according its people new and growing opportunities for a better life.
Note the denial of the extreme efforts of the Communist Party to eradicate Tibetan culture, religion and identity. He even disingenuously suggests that the Dali Lama's differences with the Chinese Politburo amount to mere quibbles over the degree of autonomy Tibet ought to be allowed to possess by their Chinese colonial masters.

Regrettably, most of the article is behind a firewall, but here are a few tidbits upon which you can chew.
Societies progress at different speeds, and in different ways, towards incorporation into their political and social stystems of the highest principals to which they aspire.
Translation. We ought to judge the Chinese communist dictators on whether they achieve their own internal aspirations, not any universal human rights norms.

Or this:
China has made immense progress towards meeting the goals and objectives articulated by its leaders of producing a harmonious society guided by science that will meet the needs and aspirations of all its people and contribute towards a sustainable and equitable world society. Indeed it [the Chinese Communist Party] is embarking on a distinctive an unprecedented pathway to a new model of development based on utilizing methods of capitalism to achieve the goals of socialism - a socialist market economy.
Distinctive and unprecedented? This is, of course, intellectual blather. I'm not saying Strong doesn't believe what he is asserting. I can't judge the his interior thought processes, but I am saying that his reasoning process is utterly bogus crap. The Chinese Communist Party politburo, witnessing the partial-eclipse of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in the 1990's and the dissolution of large segments of the Soviet empire, decided to abandon the completely incoherent theories of orthodox Marxist-Leninist/Maoist economists and adopt a market driven (capitalist) economic model led by an elite socialist governing tyranny, continuing to call itself the Communist Party of China.

Now where have we seen this scenario before? You soft leftist advocates think hard now. Can you spell NATIONAL SOCIALIST?

Think about that.

Strong is a strong advocate of the Kyoto accords. In fact, I would say he is a high priest of that religious cult. Here is some of what he has to say on China and global warming.

China realizes that it will be one of the most vulnerable victims of climate change and is already taking serious measures domestically to avert these risks. But it cannot be expected to transform these into binding commitments that are not matched by firm and enforceable commitments by the countries , notably the Unite States, whose accumulated emmissions of greenhouse gases have caused the irreversible damage already inflicted on the world.
Where does one begin? I am not a Kyoto cult member, but it is instructive to those who are, to simply note that China is currently increasing its greenhouse gases to such an extent that it is adding the equivalent of the entire industrial output of Germany each and every year. It is building hundreds of dirty coal fire electrical generating stations. Typical of Marxist/socialist tyrannies China is a environmental disaster in action.

One more quote for the Gipper.

The needs of the poor and the newly developing countries cannot be subordinated to the wasteful and indulgent appetites of the rich. and their pre-emption of a disproportion of the world's resources.
So sayeth this very wealthy socialist/industrialist globetrotter.

Pardon me while I go look for a barf bag.