June 30, 2015

Former Obama Official Asks: ‘Can Gay Marriage Defeat the Islamic State?’

In a column at ForeignPolicy.com, a former Obama administration defense official who “served as a counselor to the U.S. defense undersecretary for policy from 2009 to 2011″ has asked: “Can Gay Marriage Defeat the Islamic State?”

Rosa Brooks, who “is a law professor at Georgetown University,” is serious. Her earnestness and deep ignorance are especially troubling, because it’s clear that there are many people who “think” just like her who are still in the Obama administration and at the State Department (See: John Kerry’s slow-motion sellout in Iranian negotiations).


Sen. Tammy Baldwin: ‘Freedom of Religion’ For ‘Institutions of Faith’ — Period

Filed under: Business Moves,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 1:19 pm

The latest confirmation that Erick Erickson’s original warning at RedState that “you will be made to care” about the legalization of same-sex “marriage” even if you think it doesn’t affect you comes from Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin.

On Saturday, the day after the Supreme Court’s related ruling, Baldwin was on MSNBC’s “Up w/ Steve Kornacki” program. Baldwin was asked, “Should the bakery have to bake the cake for the gay couple getting married? Where do you come down on that?” The short version of her answer: “Damn right they should.”


NY Times Wonders How Trillions Can Be ‘Spent’ But ‘Crises Like Greece Persist’

The current headline at a June 29 New York Times story by Peter Eavis, also appearing on the front page of today’s print edition, is “Loads of Debt: A Global Ailment With Few Cures.”

But the last portion of the story’s web address is “… trillions-spent-but-crises-like-greeces-persist.html.” That’s because the original headline, the one used at the Times’s Twitter account — was “Trillions Spent But Crises Like Greece Persist.” Of course without admitting it, Eavis’s writeup is an ode to the worldwide failure of Keynesian economics — a term which naturally never appears in any form — and the closed minds of those who don’t understand why shoveling vast sums of money created out of thin air into the financial system is only marginally helpful in the short-term, and serious harmful over the long-term.


Tuesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (063015)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:05 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

Positivity: Father Flanagan founded Boys Town. Will he be recognized as a saint?

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 6:00 am

From Omaha:

Jun 23, 2015 / 04:58 pm

The case for the sainthood of Servant of God Edward Flanagan, the priest who founded Nebraska’s famous Boys Town community for orphans and other boys, is now headed to Rome.

“More than being just a humanitarian, he was a man driven by his love for Jesus Christ to care for children who were forgotten and abused,” said Omar Gutierrez of the Archdiocese of Omaha. “He is a great model for the priesthood and for what Catholic social teaching looks like in the real world.”

Gutierrez, who served as notary for the diocesan tribunal investigating the priest’s sainthood cause, said he was particularly struck by the stories of past Boys Town residents, now elderly men, who knew Father Flanagan.

“I have had World War II veterans weep in front of me as they recall what Fr. Flanagan did for them when they were just boys,” he told CNA June 22.

“I have witnessed in a unique way the amazing power of fatherhood.”

The Omaha archdiocese closed the diocesan phase of the investigation with a June 18 Mass at Omaha’s St. Cecilia Cathedral, with Archbishop George Lucas as celebrant.

The final documents produced by the diocesan tribunal were signed and stamped. Two copies of the tribunal’s report were packaged and sealed with wax, stamped with the archdiocesan seal. The apostolic nuncio will take the package to the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints.

The congregation can recommend whether Pope Francis should declare Fr. Flanagan to have demonstrated heroic virtue and to declare him “venerable,” an important step on the path to beatification or canonization.

Father Flanagan helped at least 10,000 boys at Boys Town in his lifetime, and his influence extended around the world. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

June 29, 2015

Hillary Deleted Passages, Edited Emails Delivered to State; Will Press Ignore?

Yeah, yeah. This post is about Hillary Clinton. The left and the press (but I repeat myself) insist that nobody cares about her scandalous behavior, or her evasiveness, or her demonstrated serial dishonesty. And even though a large and growing percentage of Americans don’t trust her, that doesn’t matter either, because she’ll still get most of their votes. That’s because no one wants to ever-ever-ever-ever see a non-Democrat take the White House again. So yeah, I know, we should just shut up already. Well, if you’re on the left and reading this, do us a favor and spare us any condescension you might include in the comments. People who remain in touch with reality will recognize that what follows is pretty darned important. Perhaps by some miracle someone in the establishment press with a conscience will too.

Six weeks ago, I marveled at how nobody in the press thought that it was the least bit unusual that Hillary Clinton’s team submitted supposedly complete paper copies of the “non-personal” emails present on the secret private server she kept at her New York home while serving as the nation’s Secretary of State. A Washington Examiner report today (HT Ace) has provided the likely best (i.e., really the worst) reason why Mrs. Clinton handled the situation as she did.


Katy Perry and the Nuns

Filed under: MSM Biz/Other Bias,MSM Biz/Other Ignorance — Tom @ 6:10 pm

Item: “Nuns Refuse to Sell Convent to ‘Deeply Religious’ Katy Perry”

Let’s look at this, shall we?

There’s way too much conspiracy talk about rock and pop musicians, especially “creative” interpretations of often innocent or incoherent lyrics.

But the following video doesn’t rely on conspiracy or interpretation. It relies on Katy Perry’s plainly stated words and song lyrics (article link):

“I sold my soul to the devil.”

Readers who want to insist that Perry’s act is some of huge exercise in sarcasm or try to offer up some equivalent excuse can’t deny that a lot of impressionable young fans don’t get the “joke.”

So at the very least, the press needs to spare us from nonsense like this:

“And the great irony, as Hallie mentioned, is Katy Perry comes from a deeply religious family. Her father’s an evangelical preacher.”

In the video, beginning at the 3:34 mark, we learn that Perry’s father, an ordained minister, “acknowledged that she is doing Satan’s work.”

He certainly doesn’t think it’s all just a bunch of sarcasm or some kind of “joke.”

If the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary feel like they would be doing wrong by selling their property to Perry, they appear to be on quite solid ground.

AP Writer Dodges Own Question About the State of China’s Slowing Economy

The world’s financial markets had a terrible Monday.

The debt crisis in Greece (population: 11 million) has been dominating the headlines and the press’s attention, while serious deterioration in China (population: 1.36 billion) is getting short shrift. It isn’t just that the mainland Chinese stock market has broken the bear-market decline threshold of 20 percent in less than three weeks, dropping 21.5 percent from its June 12 peak. Its underlying economy, to the extent that such things can be ascertained in an information-controlled and news-manipulated society, appears to be in serious trouble. Associated Press reporter Ken Sweet, in a Friday Q&A writeup, emulated the worst tendencies of politicians. He posed a question about China’s economy, “answered” it with a complete dodge, and pretended that its economy hasn’t started slowing yet (bolds are mine throughout this post):


Bob Costas’s Bogus ‘Apology’ After Ripping Cubs Pitcher Unmasks an Intense Hostility Towards Religious Expression

Filed under: MSM Biz/Other Bias,MSM Biz/Other Ignorance — Tom @ 8:00 am

To be clear, professional sports broadcasting is thankfully long past the time when the announcers would annoyingly sugarcoat dismal player performances. (Though I would prefer that those who actually played the game engage in this criticism, and that play-by-play announcers who haven’t try to stay away from it.)

So it would have been somewhat acceptable if veteran NBC broadcaster Bob Costas, as he was doing the play-by-play for a Friday night Chicago Cubs-St. Louis Cardinals game, had merely stated the obvious, i.e., that Cubs relief pitcher Pedro Strop, after giving up a home run, hitting a batter, and walking one while only getting one out, had an “atrocious” outing. But that’s not what he said. Costas ridiculed Strop for (imagine that) looking up and pointing to the heavens as he headed towards the Cubs’ dugout.


Monday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (062915)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:05 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

Positivity: Modern martyrs should inspire US Christians, archbishop says

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 6:00 am

From Baltimore:

Jun 22, 2015 / 04:11 pm

The plight of persecuted religious believers overseas should inspire American Catholics and others to continue their defense of religious freedom at home, Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore said.

“What solidarity we should have with these believers. We should be inspired by their courage and renewed in our resolve not to let religious freedom in our country be compromised by degrees until it all but disappears from our society,” the archbishop said.

“They are the ones who teach us about God’s precious gift of religious freedom,” he said in a June 21 homily. “No matter how great the threat to life and property, these believers exercise that God-given freedom which no tyrant can eradicate – the freedom to bear witness to one’s faith even at the cost of one’s life.”

U.S. religious freedom challenges are not the same magnitude as outright persecution facing Christians in other countries, he said, but U.S. Christians are nevertheless “in the same boat.”

Archbishop Lori’s homily came during Mass at Baltimore’s Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. About 1,000 people attended the Mass, which launched the U.S. bishops’ third Fortnight for Freedom event.

Archbishop Lori heads the U.S. bishops’ religious freedom committee.

“We seek the freedom to bear witness to Christ’s love, not just in church but in our service to the wider community through works of justice and charity, education, social services, and health care,” the archbishop said, echoing the 2015 campaign’s theme “Freedom to Bear Witness.”

The event, from June 21-July 4, coincides with the feasts of saints including Thomas More and John Fisher. It is intended to raise awareness about threats to religious freedom in the U.S. and about the need for religious freedom protections like the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

June 28, 2015

JPost’s Glick: U.S. Is Not Pushing for Iranian Nuke Inspections, and Will Instead ‘Facilitate Iran’s Development of Nuclear Weapons’

It would be nice if the establishment press, including the folks at the Associated Press, aka the Administration’s Press, had spent a bit less time this past week preparing for and celebrating the Supreme Court’s sadly as-expected Obamacare and same-sex “marriage” rulings, and a bit more on giving readers, listeners and viewers genuine updates on the horrid state of U.S. “negotiations” with Iran.

The only open question is no longer how quickly the pace of the sellout by Secretary of State John Kerry and his team to everything the Iranians want will be. It’s far worse than that. Now, thanks to a chilling writeup authored by the Jerusalem Post’s Caroline Glick, we have to ask why Barack Obama, Kerry and the rest of the “six powers” involved in the “negotiations” are so eager to help Iran build nuclear weapons.


MSNBC’s Hayes Apologizes For Falsely Stating O’Reilly’s Confederate Flag Position

This item is only worthy of note because it’s about an apparently genuine apology from a leftist — something rarely seen from the “I’m sorry you were offended” crowd — and because the chances are that very few have actually seen the apology.

Early last week, MSNBC’s Chris Hayes claimed that Bill O’Reilly had asserted, as if it was the Fox News host’s opinion, that the Confederate flag “represents the bravery of Confederates who fought in the Civil War.” Of course, that isn’t what O’Reilly said, and O’Reilly called Hayes out:


PennLive Walks Back ‘No Pro-Traditional Marriage Comments’ Policy, Plays Victim

On Friday, Curtis Houck at NewsBusters reported that “the Harrisburg, PA newspaper The Patriot News announced that both they and their online site PennLive.com ‘will very strictly limit op-Eds and letters to the editor in opposition to same-sex marriage.’”

As of three years ago, the newspaper claimed weekly circulation of 476,000. Its current hype to advertisers boasts of “500,000 unique visitors and 22 million page views each month.” Faced with what quickly and obviously became a move with the potential to cause significant losses in readership, the paper abruptly reversed course Saturday morning.


Sunday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (062815)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:05 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.