Charlie's Blog: 2017

9.19.2017

C-Notes for TUE 19 SEP 2017


1. When I write a typical blog post, it takes a lot of work. I have to find an idea, some graphics, and a quotation to head the thing. I like writing those kinds of posts, but all that work makes it hard to dash something off on a regular basis especially as things are happening in the world. So, I've decided to do something new. This is it. C-Notes. I hope you like it.

2. Trump was simply awesome at the UN today. That speech was like he was channeling Ronald Reagan from beyond the grave in some kind of seance or something. That speech is up there with his Poland speech. On foreign policy, Trump gets an A+ from the C-man.

3. Some thug gangsters shot up the Vista in Columbia. The reason this is a big deal is because the Vista is supposed to be a place where good and decent people can go to dine and have a good time. Instead, they can now expect to catch stray bullets as they walk down Gervais Street.

4. It is obvious that Mueller intends to squeeze Manafort to get him to throw Trump under the bus to save his own hide. It is a gross injustice but one carried out on a daily basis on common folk without the means to fight back. It is hell even for people with means to fight back. Just ask Martha Stewart. The Feds are evil, and Mueller dripped straight from the Devil's loins.

5. The left wing fake news mainstream media knew Trump was tapped. They didn't care. Obama was utterly Nixonian in his abuse of power except he makes Nixon look good in comparison. But Democrats get the pass while Republicans get crucified.

6. US Catholic bishops promote illegal immigration because they want government money for their charities, and they want bodies to fill their empty parishes and coffers. Steve Bannon nailed it.

7. I'm waiting for Elton John to try and sue Trump for using the term "Rocket Man."

8. Faithful Catholics are now a "cancer" on the Catholic Church. Gee, this whole time I thought it was those child molesting sodomite priests and the bishops that covered for their crimes.

9. James Comey perjured himself numerous times. But he's another Democrat that gets a pass.

10. Trump needs to fire Jeff Sessions. You can't recuse yourself every time a criminal claims to be a Democrat causing you to have a conflict of interest. The fact is that virtually all criminals are Democrats, and all Democrats are criminals. Put Christie or Giuliani in the job.

9.03.2017

SOC 20


A nation which does not remember what it was yesterday does not know where it is today.
ROBERT E. LEE

I miss beer. I never miss meat or cheese. I also never miss Jim Beam. But I do miss Pabst Blue Ribbon. And why is this? Because there was relaxation and comfort in that 12 oz. can. Every top popped was like a mini-vacation. I never cared for getting hammered, but I did like sitting back in Rusty's Chair and taking a chill pill. FYI, Rusty is the father of a friend who brought this discarded chair to my wife before she ever met me. That chair is mine now, and I love it. Here is a picture of it from my crappy flip phone:


Rusty's chair has seen some action. It has been in my wife's possession for at least ten years, and it was blown out when she got it. Somewhere along the way, it became my chair mainly because I sit in it on a daily basis. I like it so much that I might get it reupholstered when the time comes. When I sit in the chair, I can feel the old man crust on me. It grows a bit more as each year goes by.

The PBR was supposed to be the companion on my descent into crustiness. The beer was going to mellow me and maybe tamp down the bitterness that comes from watching the world go to hell. This guy has the right idea:


But I gave up PBR, and I have had no gout flare ups since. But old men like to find comfort in simple things--a cold beer, a cigar, a glass of scotch, a favorite pipe. Those things are denied to me. At least I have the chair. Man, do I love that chair!

I think God wants me to be a teetotaller. I don't know God's reasons for this, and I don't have to know. I've learned to not question the Almighty's business. I just want to obey. So, I am out of the beer game for the sake of a disease that I am not supposed to have. I will have to witness the world's destruction fully sober.

I don't have a comfortable life, and that is by choice and design. I am averse to comfort in a lifestyle my wife calls the "Arsenal of Pain." Somewhere in my journey, I made peace with pain and adversity and even seek it out. I find comfort in suffering which is counterintuitive. This is because suffering makes me turn to God. Ultimately, our comfort and solace must come from God Almighty. For some people, beer becomes the substitute for God.

I endure each day with heavy reliance on the rosary, the Holy Bible, the grace given through the sacraments of the eucharist and confession, and the examples of the saints who lived holy lives in much harsher conditions than I encounter in my life. God is my strength and refuge. God is always there for me.

The practice of daily prayer has made me appreciate things about prayer that I never really knew before. We are to be importunate in prayer which seems to be a strange requirement for me. I am reminded of the story in the Bible where Moses had to keep his hands up in order for the Israelites to keep winning in battle. They would help Moses by holding up and supporting his arms. That is the best image of the nature of prayer that I know. God wants us to share in what He does, and prayer is our way of sharing. Everyone prays for the ones they know and love, but do we pray daily? Would we pray 100 times or even 1000 times if it would save a loved one from Hell?

Prayer works. God is not a genie in the bottle, but I've seen answers to prayer that I did not expect. My own conversion to the Catholic faith was an answer to prayer. But most of the time, our prayers seem to go unanswered either because we ask for the wrong things or because we grow impatient with waiting for the answers. It is in those times of discouragement that we really need to keep praying. On the other side of the discouragement is the answer.

What does all this suffering and praying do? It produces grit. This is just another name for fortitude, but I like grit better. Endurance through trials makes strong people, and I have encountered strong people of faith. When life gets hard, these people fight back on their knees. They are holy warriors who don't give up. And that, Gentle Reader, is the secret of winning in this life. Never give up.

I often wonder if Donald Trump will give up. The Left would like for him to give up. I have little faith in him on this count. Yet, he is still there. I truly believe that he will make America great again as long as he stays in that Oval Office. Life would be so much easier for him if he threw in the towel. But this country needs that man. I believe that. A Jeb Bush presidency would be a disaster right now as nothing would be changing at this point. When I look at Theresa May in England, I shake my head in disgust. May is no Thatcher. I keep hoping the UK will get a true conservative prime minister.

When you are a Christian and a conservative, you have to make a mental commitment to never giving up. Surrender is not an option. This is a very important thing. It's like the story of the conquistadors who burned their boats upon arrival in the New World. They removed the option of turning back.

Trials reveal to us our escape hatches. I admit that I still have a couple in my brain. I didn't think I had them, but I see them clearly now. I am going to eliminate those escape hatches. I will always be a conservative, a Christian, and a Catholic. Even if I am blind in the deepest darkest pit I may find myself in the future, I will put my trust in the Lord. It is one thing to say that God is all you have. It is another thing to know it. God is all I have. And God is all I need.


8.26.2017

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 52


A doctor gave a man six months to live. The man couldn’t pay his bill, so he gave him another six months.
HENNY YOUNGMAN

1. TRUMP

It has been awhile since I posted an RTOVS. Trump has been a busy guy during my hiatus, so I will be brief in my thoughts. I think Trump whiffed on the thing in Charlottesville by giving a weak initial response. Naturally, the Left pounced on this which means nothing to me because they are the Left. But conservatives of which I am one noticed as well. That is cause for concern. The reality is that there is a split between conservatives and the alt-right. Trump has been unable to decide if he is on the side of alt-right people or conservatives. Steve Bannon has not made this easy on him.

With Bannon's dismissal, Trump has decided to go in the conservative direction. This is a good thing. This is because conservatism is absolutely good, right, and just. I think the alt-right is now going to fade into oblivion. Trump needed to repudiate them in some way, and he has. Granted, they helped him win the GOP nomination and the presidency. But the alt-right are mostly imbeciles. My advice to Trump is to stop listening to Steve Bannon and start listening to Mark Levin.

With Afghanistan, the alt-right has now turned against Trump as Trump decides to listen to the generals on that issue. I support this decision. Afghanistan is a breeding ground for international terrorism. Unfortunately, it will probably always be this way. We can't just up and leave. The isolationists don't understand this. This leads us to Trump's other group he has to deal with--neoconservatives.

The neocons hate Trump. Yet, they see in his moves with Syria and Afghanistan things to like. The problem with neocons like Bill Kristol is that they are scum and idiots. There isn't a war they don't like, and they won't be satisfied until we have a One World Empire. Trump does not believe in this and neither do I. It is enough to be secure from world threats without subduing the world. The Romans were a Republic and relatively free. But then they conquered the world in empire which cost them their own freedom. There is a valuable lesson there.

Neoconservatives do not believe in liberty. Liberty and empire cannot coexist. If you doubt this, look at all the civil liberties and protections that have eroded since 9/11 and the rise of the neoconservatives. Empires demand all powerful rulers. This is why neocons find so much in common with the Left and the Marxists and why they preferred Hillary to Trump. Let me be clear on this. Neoconservatism is an evil. It needs repudiation.

The middle path between alt-right isolationism and neocon imperialism is the conservative policy of peace through strength. Weakness is provocation. Trump seems to get this which is why his show of strength regarding North Korea is turning out well. It is not enough to leave others alone. You must also give them robust incentives to leave you alone as well.

In regards to Afghanistan, this is the equivalent of the incorrigible offender. I doubt that place will ever be made right, and we shouldn't even try. That country like some people needs its ass kicked on a daily basis.

As for Trump, he has really had a rough time of things. My advice to him going forward is to be conservative and retain and hire conservatives to serve you. The more Trump follows this advice the better he will do. Ironically, he seems to be doing just that. This is why I like Trump. He ends up doing the right thing despite himself.

As I write this, Trump has issued more direct guidance on banning transgender troops. I totally applaud and support his decision on this. I also applaud and support his decision to pardon Sheriff Joe Arpaio on the ridiculous "crime" he committed. Basically, the man enforced the law despite a judge's order to not enforce the law. We are at the point where one part of government such as a judge or a mayor can act in defiance and order others to act in defiance of this nation's laws. It just boggles the mind. This presidential pardon is exactly what the Founders envisioned happening and why they thought it was needed. The pardon power is a check against tyranny. The conviction of Sheriff Joe Arpaio for doing his job is tyranny.

2. FRANCIS

Pope Francis continues to infuriate faithful Catholics. The latest outrage is when the Holy Father said that countries should set aside safety for the sake of mercy. Basically, a country should take in all Islamic refugees and embrace rape, murder, and pillage as acceptable things out of mercy and compassion. You would have to be a complete papolater to listen to and accept this madness. As one person pointed out, Pope Francis is the head of his own state and can practice what he preaches anytime he likes at the Vatican.

With Amoris Laetitia, the schism widens ever more as diocese after diocese either embraces adulterers or rejects them. Cardinal Burke has finally declared that a correction is coming which the three remaining dubia cardinals will give privately to the Holy Father. I appreciate and admire Cardinal Burke, but this correction amounts to nothing since I expect Pope Francis to never answer the door. If they want a face-to-face, maybe they can catch him in the hallway somewhere. Otherwise, Francis will just ignore them. A public rebuke may provoke a response, but it will end in the loss of red hats and possible excommunication.

There are things that need to be said, and I don't see anyone saying this. So, I will say it. The pope can announce that he is an atheist, publicly worship the Devil in a satanic sacrifice in St. Peter's basilica, declare the entire Magisterium of the Roman Catholic Church to be null and void, and copulate publicly in St. Peter's square with a prostitute, and there is nothing the cardinals can do about it. NOTHING. They can decry the man as a heretic and point out his errors. They can declare him an antipope after the fact. But they cannot remove him from the chair of Peter. The secular authorities can lock him up for criminal activities, but he would have to step beyond the Vatican for this to happen. Otherwise, he is the pope, and he must be endured until God Himself removes him from his post.

Theologians in the past have stated that any pope who declares heresy is automatically out of the pontificate at the moment of the declaration. Nevermind that this not even supposed to be possible per papal infallibility. The pope may declare errors privately but never ex cathedra. If you follow the logic here, a pope can never not be pope because he cannot utter error even when he utters errors. If this makes no sense to you, welcome to my world, folks. This logical pretzel is a form of the game of heads I win and tails you lose.

Let me clear things up for you, Gentle Reader. If a pope ever speaking ex cathedra declares heresy which would be errors in regard to faith and morals, that man has not ceased to be pope. Christ has ceased to be Christ. The gates of hell have prevailed, and the Petrine promise declared by Christ in Matthew 16:17-19 will have been rendered a lie. Christ cannot lie. Popes cannot err. They are infallible. A fallible pope is a calamity, and Jesus has left no escape from this calamity should it occur. If we set aside this teaching, we should join the modernists and also set aside Christ's teachings on divorce and remarriage. Or, we can join the Eastern Orthodox and deny papal infallibility.

I do not believe Pope Francis will bring this calamity upon us. I do believe that he will try. If Pope Francis succeeds in this regard, I will return to my atheism as Roman Catholicism will be the greatest mockery in all of human history. God keeps His promises, and if He doesn't, then God does not exist. If He does exist and breaks His promises, then the Mohammedans are correct in their theology. I will never be a Muslim or worship their monstrosity.

These are high stakes for the faithful because their faith hangs in the balance. I have faith, but it is not faith divorced from reason and common sense. There have been bad popes and antipopes. There have been popes who said and did things in contradiction to the Magisterium. I think Pope Francis is one of them. But no successor of Peter can ever issue heresy as true doctrine because the Holy Spirit won't let him.

Where do things stand at the moment? Here is what I believe and know about Pope Francis:

--Francis believes in giving communion to remarried adulterers.

--Francis believes in artificial contraception especially for the sake of protecting the environment through population control.

--Francis abhors the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and will rescind Summorum Pontificum.

These are not idle speculations but the common sense conclusions we can draw from the man's words and actions. Just this week, the Holy Father threw his magisterial weight behind the Novus Ordo. What that means is still being debated, so I will not comment on this at this time. But when you see the dark clouds overhead, keep your umbrella handy.

Because Pope Francis cannot overthrow the Magisterium himself, he does so by a move I call "heresy by proxy." In Amoris Laetitia, Pope Francis did not change church teaching, but he gave the greenlight for others to do it for him. Cardinals and bishops can err, so this is how you get one diocese promoting the error being suppressed in another diocese. The result is schism with faithful bishops fighting it out with apostate bishops. Where popes quieted schism in the past with their words and authority, Pope Francis promotes schism and heterodoxy by his silence and by decentralizing his authority. It is almost satanic in its fiendishness.

What can faithful bishops and cardinals do about it? As I said, NOTHING. Laypeople can certainly do nothing except exercise the power of the purse by not giving money to Rome. The papacy is an absolute monarchy. The remaining faithful bishops can stand fast, but a demonic pope can simply remove them and replace them with his own bad bishops. As the college of Cardinals gets stacked up with modernists, the next pope will certainly be worse than the current pope.

Where do things go from here? That is the subject of prophecy, and there are many prophecies about this coming calamity. All I can tell you to do is pray the rosary, go to Confession, attend Mass, and do works of mercy. Keep your lamp shining and never give up. God wins in the end.

3. WEBSITE OF THE WEEK

Living on a Dime is a favorite of my wife who enjoys watching their YouTube channel. Most of their advice is cooking and food related, but they also give a lot of commentary on how most people are living hand to mouth in the most ridiculous of ways. People with money problems are usually people with spending problems and lifestyle inflation. Watch the videos, learn some things, and get your act together.

4. QUOTABLE QUOTES

No one heals himself by wounding another.
ST. AMBROSE

The true friends of the people are neither revolutionaries nor innovators, but men of tradition.
POPE ST. PIUS X

Those that cannot control themselves try to control others.
FATHER RIPPERGER

5. LINKS OF INTEREST

The “God of the Gaps” is Growing

“Star Wars”: A False Idol of Distraction for Lost Souls

Five Hard Truths That Will Set You Free

A Final Word on Fr. Martin

Bishops In A Bind

The Galat Case: A Lesson in Prudence for Papal Critics

8.17.2017

SOC 19


You cannot open a book without learning something.
CONFUCIUS

In my last SOC post, I praised beer. Now, it is with irony that I must now announce that I am giving up beer. I don't want to give up beer, but I have to give up beer. Beer contributes to gout, and I have gout. I just discovered all of this just this week. It is both liberating and heartbreaking. Here is my tale.

I am a vegan. I do not eat meat, dairy, eggs, or any other animal products. I have been vegan for about four years now. I made the switch in order to preserve and promote my health. Prior to this, I ate crap for four decades. My youth made this abuse of my body possible, but I knew I would pay a consequence for this when I got older. And, I was right.

A vegan diet does not cause gout. In fact, it basically cures gout. My gout is the consequence of my past life as a meathead who ate burgers and fried chicken almost daily. I think my first flare up was when I was 36 or 37, but I didn't recognize it at the time. But I have suffered many flare ups since becoming vegan. This isn't supposed to happen to vegans which is why I had a hard time accepting that I had gout. It didn't make sense. Then, I read an article from Dr. McDougall, and it makes total sense now.

Gout is caused when purines from meat (and yeast) turn into uric acid in your body. This uric acid crystallizes in your joints especially the big toe joint. I don't eat meat, but I still have body fat from my meathead days. As I lose weight, the purines stored in this body fat become uric acid leading to gout. Basically, I am now paying for eating all of that garbage in my former life.

My antidote for this condition is to drink lots of water and consume lots of tart cherry products and apple cider vinegar. I also have to give up beer which contributes to gout. I can drink wine or spirits since it is the hops and yeast in beer that are the problem. But, to be honest, beer is the only alcohol I really care to drink. Wine has never been my thing, and I think spirits lead to alcoholism. So, I'm a teetotaller again.

Yes, it is enough to make a grown man cry. I wish it weren't so, but there it is. Beer was my last vice. Now, I'm safe to invite to a Baptist church picnic again. Why does everything that it is pleasurable and fun in life seem to come with some negative consequence?

I have been here before, so it isn't the end of the world for me. When I was an atheist, I was a teetotaller. I never drank. At the time, I was enamored with tales of Enlightenment thinkers with ideas of freedom and liberty fueled by prodigious amounts of coffee and meeting in European cafes to discuss all their grand ideas. So, I became a caffeine addict which lead to massive amounts of energy and productivity in my life. Unfortunately, all of this energy and productivity was pointed in the wrong direction. But I got things done.

I have toyed with a return to that caffeine fueled high octane lifestyle. There were a lot of negatives in my life back then but alcohol and substance abuse were not on the list. I was a foul mouthed libertarian atheist, but I lived clean.


Now, I have been a coffee person since my twenties. It is my morning habit like many other people. I like to make this joke. We know there is no life on Mars. This is because there is no coffee on Mars, and life is not possible without coffee. Yeah, it is kinda corny, but it makes my point. Coffee is go-juice.

My relationship with coffee became more serious in my thirties when I gave up drinking. If you ever attend a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous, you will come away with the impression that these drunks have replaced their alcohol addiction with caffeine and nicotine addiction. I don't consider myself to be an alcoholic, but I am absolutely a caffeine addict.

I have praised coffee many times here on the C-blog, and I would say that 95% of the content here has been written under the influence of that drug. For curiosity's sake, I read up on gout and coffee. One article said that high coffee intake lead to a 40% reduction in gout attacks. That is so awesome. Everytime that I worry that coffee might be a bad thing, I come away from the internet reassured that java is one of the best things to ever happen to humanity. It is the only drug that I know that will allow you to stay out of jail, keep your job, and may even get you promoted. Alcohol will get you a DUI. Cocaine and heroin will get you dead. Nicotine will turn your body to cancer. But caffeine can resurrect the dead. I know because I rise from the grave of slumber each day with a hot cup of java.

There is a difference between the casual coffee drinker and the serious coffee drinker. The casual coffee drinker has two cups of mild brew each morning. The serious drinker has four cups of strong brew as a mere starter and will drink coffee again in the afternoon and perhaps the evening. The serious coffee drinker is what has made Starbucks possible.


I like Starbucks. Of course, I don't like paying four bucks for a cup of coffee. But I like Starbucks as a location. It is a much better substitute for the bar. That hangout part is why their coffee costs so much, and I should go easy on them for charging so much. Before Starbucks, there was really no place to hang out with friends that didn't involve drunks, and this includes the Waffle House. Plus, I take inspiration in the fact that virtually every Starbucks has someone there working away at a laptop computer either studying or getting work done. These people are on the high octane lifestyle.

Once upon a time, this was my lifestyle. Then, somewhere I drifted into relaxation and contentment. This was certainly as a consequence of being happily married and also becoming Catholic. I was restless then I found rest. The reason those Enlightenment guys like Voltaire drank so much coffee was due to the restlessness that comes from the rejection of Christianity. They got out of the car and went to work prodigiously reinventing the wheel.

When I was a libertarian and an atheist, I was a reinventor of wheels. It was fun and pointless. I don't care to live that again. But I admit that it might be nice to have that same energy back that fired me up so much. I was high energy then but pointed in the wrong direction. Now, I'm pointed in the right direction, but I am low energy. What if I were high energy in the right direction?

With my putting away of beer in favor of coffee again, I think I would like to try this experiment. I am content in my life, but I wish to be more in terms of my work. I feel like a very lazy person these days, and this is something I want to change. This gout thing has really laid me low, but it may turn out to be a real kick in the pants to make some productive changes in the way I live.

Another change I have been doing is cultural and intellectual hygiene. This is the practice of turning off CNN and the New York Times. This is part of an internal debate that I have been having with myself over the last couple of years. Essentially, the debate has two sides. The first side is that you should expose yourself constantly to opposing ideas and culture. For instance, a conservative should take the time to read Karl Marx and Saul Alinsky in order to more effectively oppose their errors. The second side is that you already know they are bad, and life is short. The argument for this side is best expressed by St. Paul in Philippians 4:8:
For the rest, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever modest, whatsoever just, whatsoever holy, whatsoever lovely, whatsoever of good fame, if there be any virtue, if any praise of discipline, think on these things.
My interpretation of this is that you should eschew hip hop, Norwegian death metal, and David Allan Coe in favor of Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Chopin, and Debussy. The music issue is an easy one to settle. The issue of art is a little more difficult. Obviously, shock art involving body fluids and blasphemy can and should be ignored in favor of Rembrandt and Leonardo. But what about Monet or Picasso? That's when things get a bit fuzzy. And what about pagan art from Greco-Roman times?

As I embrace becoming an old man, I listen to old man music now. I feel that I am in a halfway place between youth and maturity. This blog is evidence of that as I blend history, philosophy, and Led Zeppelin. But I feel a certain need to purify myself of the decadence of rock and roll. I find no real joy or pleasure in it anymore. I prefer listening to old classical guitar stuff from Andres Segovia now. He is my Jimi Hendrix now.

SCHOENBERG: This guy composed the worst music you will ever hear.

I do not believe that beauty, goodness, and truth are subjective. Consequently, I reject those avenues of culture that believe these things are subjective. Now, some rock music like the heavenly harmonies of Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young can be beautiful while some "classical" music like the monotony of early Philip Glass or the cacophony of Arnold Schoenberg are just noise and a waste of good vinyl. But for the most part, rock is noise while classical is beautiful. I also believe that the degradation of most rock and popular music today comes as the musicians of today have virtually no knowledge of the classical music of old. Bereft of this grounding in what is truly good, they reproduce what they know which is crap. This is why the radio in my vehicle remains permanently on the AM dial as I listen to news/talk instead of music now.

The easiest case for cultural hygiene is that life is too short to waste on bad music, art, movies, and books. This is why these things have critics except the critics aren't so good at criticizing anymore because they are divorced from the true, the good, and the beautiful now. So, to make it easy for you, you can stop watching almost all movies made today. They are all very bad. Even the best ones aren't so great. If you gave up movies and television completely, you will have lost very little.

Music is also fairly easy. Just listen to classical music, choral music, and opera. I play this stuff all the time when I am at home. My wife claims that it has an effect on her, and she is totally into Motown/R&B/Soul/Disco/Eighties stuff. Her listening to my music is purely secondhand audio and not by choice. But she likes it all the same. That is the universal appeal of good music. Everyone loves it because beauty is not in the eye or ear of the beholder.

With art, I can tell you when it went bad. It started with Picasso and devolved from there. Basically, art fell completely into crap with this work:

GUERNICA: When art turned to crap.

This is Guernica which is more political than artistic. Either way, it is just flat out ugly. People may disagree when art went bad, but this is usually the moment in Art History 101 when students know in their guts that art turned to complete crap. Everything following this work is either a variation of this garbage or a repudiation in favor of a return to more classical forms. Basically, you have art that is purposely made to be hideous or made to be beautiful.

Popular art is a different category for me. This would be the stuff of comic books, advertisements, posters, cartoons, and things of this nature. They are not so much about beauty as about sending a message or information. This distinction between high art and popular art can also apply to music as well. I don't put Andy Warhol in the same league as Michelangelo in the same way that I don't consider Led Zeppelin to be equal with Bach. The popular stuff is simply fun. Fun is good. Sublime is another realm.

The danger I run with cultural hygiene is not being fun anymore. I still remember when a local columnist lost his mind when the local NPR station started programming jazz stuff on the classical station. IT WAS THE BEGINNING OF THE END. It was a gross overreaction on his part because only two people listened to the station, and he was one of them. He should have worried more about losing his newspaper job. AND HE DID. But he was a casualty of the internet.

Art, music, and movies cause me some grief in the cultural hygiene department, but I have none when it comes to literature. The reason for this is that those forms are immediately accessible. Moby Dick is not. Because reading novels takes effort and time, I don't waste any of it on Stephen King, John Grisham, or whoever is pretending to be Tom Clancy these days. I'm still trying to finish Lord of the Rings.

When it comes to literature, the make or break point is Ernest Hemingway. I consider him to be the most influential writer of the twentieth century. That influence was more stylistic than anything else. Hemingway wrote in that spare style. This economy and thrift was a game changer.

I'm out.

8.13.2017

Hot and Cool


Our patience will achieve more than our force.
EDMUND BURKE

I have not written in quite awhile. I am having a personal crisis. Everything is fine in my life, but my thinking is troubled. When my thinking is troubled, I stop writing. Writing is an extension of my thinking, and I have been having trouble resolving an internal conflict. This conflict does not involve politics or religion but strategy. Strategy is important. People who know me will hear me mention strategy often. The strategy that is at the heart of my internal conflict is about being hot versus being cool. I will now elaborate.

What is the difference between the right and the alt-right? I could point to some policy differences between people who are true conservatives versus people who are alt-right. But I realize that these policy differences aren't the really divisive issues. What divides conservatives and alt right people is style.

To give an example, there is one alt right activist who pushes really hard for Trump, and he decries those on the Right who are not as forceful or energetic in their efforts as "cucks" and "cuckservatives." These are insults tossed around very frequently among the alt right. Yet, the irony is that this same individual is a supporter of a universal basic income and lives off a large divorce settlement he got from his very successful wife who made way more money than he did. That should cause you to pause for a moment and reflect.

Alt right people are not really conservatives. When you poke at them a bit, you find that they are downright liberal and progressive in their thinking. For instance, Steve Bannon is the intellectual guru for the alt right, yet he does not support free trade and even thinks we should raise taxes on the rich. Similarly, Donald Trump would gladly sign an Obamacare Lite bill that doesn't actually repeal Obamacare, and the guy totally loves and approves of gay marriage. In fact, I know of no alt right person who has the intellectual consistency or the moral convictions of true conservatives like Ted Cruz or Mark Levin. Politically, these alt right people aren't much different than Democrats from an earlier time like the 1990's. Then, you have alt right gay superstars like Milo and Paul Joseph Watson. How did these guys ever find themselves on the right?


The alt right is simply loud and brash. What they lack in the brain department they fill in with the mouth department. They scream and fight really hard for dubious convictions. Then, there are the white supremacist neo-Nazi types who have jumped on the alt right bandwagon. Yes, folks, it is a real mess. The alt right are like the rowdy cousins of a normally respectable family. They are family, and they are an embarrassment.

Donald Trump is the alt right candidate. My initial support was for Ted Cruz, but Trump got the nomination. My alternatives were Hillary or some third party loser. So, I voted for Trump with low expectations which he has exceeded spectacularly. I do not regret him becoming President. I do regret that he became the GOP nominee for President. I am reminded of this regret every time he decides to do some late night tweeting like this:


I don't have an issue with the substance of this President, but his style is a disgrace to himself and to the presidency. I am no fan of Joe or Mika, but I do believe that getting into the muck with these two is pretty stupid. Yet, Trump had to do it. He couldn't let it go. It was flame on for the Donald.

The guy who got this sort of thing exactly right was Barack Obama. I despised the man for all the stood for and promoted while he was President. The man was and is an Alinskyite Marxist in my book. But in his style, he was utterly conservative. His cool demeanor was very effective and even beguiling. When Trump kept bashing on Obama, Obama never took the bait. He gave Trump the rope and let the man hang himself on his own words. Then, he quietly released his birth certificate which made Trump look like a complete fool. Now, that birth certificate may be a forgery. I don't know. But Donald Trump's fire was no match for Barack Obama's ice. In terms of strategy, Trump was outdone.

Coolness comes from patience. Patience comes from two things. The first is the knowledge that you are right. The second is the belief that you will win in the long run. Now, Barack Obama has neither of these two things, but he is insanely good at faking it. He is not a conservative so much as a really good poker player.


The alt right lacks patience which is why they burn hot. They don't have the knowledge that they are right nor a belief in long term victory. These things come from the Christian faith which the majority of alt right people lack. They are fundamentally pagan in their outlook. The result is their fire and aggression comes from an inherent insecurity. It is the same sort of thing on the Left, and the alt right has adopted many of the same tactics as the Left.

For myself, I must confess that the alt right has had an effect on me. I have allowed myself to burn hot where I was cool before. Twitter has become a near occasion of sin for me, so I have deactivated my account. As for Gab, it is overwhelmed by racist and antisemitic posts and has become the social media cesspool of the alt right. Social media feeds anger, and my anger has swelled mightily over the past month or so. This is what has brought me to my present crisis.

If you are a conservative, it behooves you to choose the Path of Cool and remain on the Path of Cool. This means living by the confidence that you are right, and that right will win in the end. This is because God wins in the end. As such, you should be civil and calm. But this does not mean that you should be silent. When the shouting in the room finally dies down, your calm words will be the only ones people will remember. Be sure to speak them.

For myself, the shouting is done on social media. Upon leaving Twitter, I wondered if my blog should also go down the rubbish bin. But this would be going down the Path of Silence. This is where Burke's other dictum comes into play which states that evil triumphs when good men do nothing. Being silent is a form of doing nothing.

I tend to go to extremes, so I have been pulled between the poles of the inferno of anger and the ice of silence. The midpoint between these extremes is a principled conservatism that stands up for something but does not degrade itself into conspiracy theories and insults. My hero in this regard is Ted Cruz. That guy is a real fighter who doesn't back down. A lot of people hate him, but they respect him. You don't see that guy slamming people in the middle of the night on Twitter. Cruz knows that conservatism is not just political but also demands a certain level of civility and decorum. Mike Pence is another conservative who gets it right. He would be an awesome president.

When you burn hot, there are two sins you are going to fall into. The first is calumny. This is where you say or write things that are untrue and damaging to others. This is known popularly as "conspiracy theories" and "fake news." This happens when people either fabricate things or simply don't wait for all the facts to come in. Timeliness takes precedence over truth. Getting it out first matters more than getting it right. Unfortunately, Twitter makes this an even bigger problem.

The second sin is detraction. This is where you tear people down with insults or highlighting things that may be true but are not communicated for good. This is something I am guilty of doing especially on Twitter. Twitter is simply a battleground for cheap shots. Meaningful discourse can't happen in 140 characters. The rule is to never insult people. Of course, calling Obama a Marxist might be insulting but necessary. But is it necessary to mock the man's wife? 

As a conservative and as a Christian, I resolve to get on and remain on the Path of Cool. It is a harder path for certain. But it is the sure path.

7.16.2017

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 51


The first five days after the weekend are always the hardest.
HENNY YOUNGMAN

1. SPADARO

For those not in the know, Father Antonio Spadaro belongs to the Society of Judas. He is also close to Pope Francis and recently wrote an article in La Civiltà Cattolica that has drawn the ire of real Catholics over its description of the "ecumenism of hate." This is to be contrasted with the "ecumenism of love" that Spadaro and the Society of Judas promotes that includes things like pantheism, religious indifferentism, communism, transgender mutilation, Islamophilia, and sodomy. Spadaro is a well known heretic, and his interview in the Society of Judas mag America drips with that passive-aggressive tone of hatred and disdain for the alliance in the US between real Catholics and evangelical Christians inside the Republican Party. These would be conservatives.

Here's the deal. The Jesuits used to be real Catholics a long time ago. Then, they were overrun by Marxism in the guise of liberation theology which has transmogrified into "social justice" and began ordaining sodomites to the priesthood in massive numbers. As it stands, they no longer belong to Jesus but to Judas, the betrayer. This is why I refer to them as the Society of Judas.

Spadaro dripped from Satan's loins, and he does his master's bidding. In this case, it is to oppose those who oppose socialism, abortion, sodomy, gay marriage, and the crazy idea that Jesus Christ was and is truly the Son of God. Spadaro is another wolf in a sheepsuit.

The reason Spadaro is causing so much controversy is because he is the right hand man of Pope Francis. Does this recent article reflect the thinking of Pope Francis? My personal opinion is that it most certainly does. Pope Francis is Pope Judas in my book. He earned that title when he refused to clarify Amoris Laetitia in response to the four cardinals. His words and actions to date indicate to me that he is also a wolf in a sheepsuit and on his way to being the worst pope the Roman Catholic Church has ever seen. My prayer is that his eyes will be opened in repentance, or they will be closed forever in death. The worst is yet to come from this man.

Gentle Reader, if you haven't figured it out by now from reading this blog, I will deliver it you straight. Those people who believe in God and His laws and are political conservatives are the good guys. This group includes Catholics, evangelical Christians, and sincere Jews. What unites the good guys are the most basic things. This is the belief in natural law and political liberty and Judeo-Christian morality. The evildoers are the political progressives, the Democrat Party, the secularists, and the practitioners of liberal religion in various Protestant denominations and the Roman Catholic Church. You can recognize them easily by this banner:


This flag is a satanic mockery of the covenantal sign found in Genesis 9. The human race was wiped out in the flood for the very things that are now in practice today. Yet, God promised to not do this again and established the rainbow as the sign of this promise. Naturally, the Devil wants to rub God's face in it today.

The evildoers are coming to a bad end, and the worst punishment will fall on those masquerading as God's servants. This would be the Society of Judas. They will be without excuse when they answer for their misdeeds and sins.

2. MARTIN

Father Martin is still selling that gay book of his. Naturally, he is doing it in that Jesuitical way where he affirms church teaching in one breath and demolishes it in the second breath. The video in the link is a grand display of this Jesuitical way. Of course, this is nothing new since the art was put into practice by the Sophists in ancient Greece and is carried on today by various lawyers and spin doctors. Here is how it works.


The best way to understand Jesuitical tricks is to see them like a coin on a string. The Jesuit pays out the coin, and you see the coin in your pocket or a vending machine or what have you. They pay the coin, and you are satisfied. Then, with their rhetorical strings, they snatch the coin back. This is how the Society of Judas affirms church teachings while simultaneously undermining them. It is not a complicated trick on their part. They simply say two things that are in direct contradiction with each other. It is like saying 2 + 2 = 4 then saying 2 + 2 = 5. Then, when you call them out on the error, they simply ignore you. If you push it really hard, they affirm the truth until the heat is off. Then, it is back to 2 + 2 = 5.

Father Martin's agenda is clear. He wants the Church to change its teachings on sodomy. The man is a heretic and a slime eel. Father Martin will affirm church teaching right up to the moment he destroys it. It's like an expectant mother knitting baby booties in the waiting room at the abortion clinic. This is the Society of Judas. When you see their members condemned to eternal damnation, you won't be surprised.

3. WEBSITE OF THE WEEK

This is a new section of RTOVS that I decided to add to point readers to websites that I find informative and valuable. This week's website is one that got hacked just this week. And why was it hacked? Because it exposes the truth about the corruption in the Roman Catholic Church and the general culture. This website is Church Militant.

Church Militant is very controversial. This is because it exposes a great deal of scandal while maintaining fidelity to the Church's actual teachings as opposed to the heresies of homosexual priests and prelates and the Society of Judas. Liberal bishops and cardinals do not like Church Militant. Michael Voris, the captain of the Church Militant ship, is persona non grata at any conference of bishops.

Church Militant did not begin as an irritant to the prelates. The apostolate was begun to confront the secular culture and Barack Obama. But Voris and Co. learned that the real war is inside the Catholic Church. You can't pick out the speck in the world's eye when you have the beam of sodomite and pedophile sex scandals in your own eye.

Church Militant does a great service to the Catholic Church and for the faithful Catholics out there who still cling to orthodoxy. I recommend visiting their site on a daily basis.

4. QUOTABLE QUOTES

The Church is a ship, and even if the ship is in difficulty, it is necessary that we at least be in it.
ST. AUGUSTINE

The most powerful weapon to conquer the devil is humility. For, as he does not know at all how to employ it, neither does he know how to defend himself from it.
ST. VINCENT DE PAUL

The life of a Christian is nothing but a perpetual struggle against self; there is no flowering of the soul to the beauty of its perfection except at the price of pain.
ST. PIO OF PIETRELCINA

Closing our eyes to our neighbour also blinds us to God.
POPE BENEDICT XVI

Religious liberty as an ideal sounds lovely. But in the abstract, it has very little power. It has political force only to the degree that ordinary people believe and practice their faith — and refuse to tolerate anyone or anything interfering with their faith.
ARCHBISHOP CHARLES CHAPUT

5. ODDS AND ENDS

--Waters is a colossal whiny Englishman. It's too bad the LSD took out Syd instead of him.

--Elon Musk would be nothing without government money.

--Melinda Gates is just one soundbite away from being a complete advocate of genocide of the poor. When abortion and contraception are your answers to world poverty, everyone gets the message.

--Pope Francis basically called Cardinal Muller a whiner and a complainer with that ridiculous sign on that door.

--Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI basically called Pope Francis a shipwreck of the Roman Catholic Church in his kind words concerning the late Cardinal Meisner.

6. LINKS OF INTEREST



7.09.2017

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 50


She's been married so many times she has rice marks on her face.
HENNY YOUNGMAN

1. TRUMP

Donald Trump delivered one of the greatest speeches I have ever heard from a President during his visit to Poland this past week. It is moving. It ranks up there with Reagan's famous "Tear Down This Wall" speech. It praises patriotism, freedom, and belief in God. Naturally, the Left despises it because they despise patriotism, freedom, and God. May they gnash their teeth forever in Hell for their hatred.

My wife asked me the other day if I thought Trump was a good president. I told her that I had exceedingly low expectations of the man who only won my vote because he was a Republican and was not Hillary Clinton. As such, he has had an easy job exceeding those expectations. The man has done a spectacular job so far. I can quibble here and there, but I thank God every day that the Obama nightmare is over.

NeverTrumpers are always going to hate the Donald. They insist on sacrificing the good on the altar of perfection in denial of the conservative dictum that governments are not meant to usher in Utopia but merely to prevent Hell on Earth. Governments are comprised of fallen men and women governing a fallen world.

Trump believes in God. That is enough to make the difference. I pray for the president every day. I thank God that he is our president.
Those heroes remind us that the West was saved with the blood of patriots; that each generation must rise up and play their part in its defense and that every foot of ground, and every last inch of civilization, is worth defending with your life.

Our own fight for the West does not begin on the battlefield -- it begins with our minds, our wills, and our souls. Today, the ties that unite our civilization are no less vital, and demand no less defense, than that bare shred of land on which the hope of Poland once totally rested. Our freedom, our civilization, and our survival depend on these bonds of history, culture, and memory.

And today as ever, Poland is in our heart, and its people are in that fight. Just as Poland could not be broken, I declare today for the world to hear that the West will never, ever be broken. Our values will prevail. Our people will thrive. And our civilization will triumph. 

So, together, let us all fight like the Poles — for family, for freedom, for country, and for God.

Thank you. God Bless You. God bless the Polish people. God bless our allies. And God bless the United States of America.
 2. FRANCIS

While Trump surprises me, the Holy Father disappoints. Cardinal Muller is turning out to be the James Comey of this pontificate as he dishes the dirt on what it is really like working for Pope Francis. Needless to say, it isn't pleasant. I also concur with Steve Skojec on this matter:

Repugnant is definitely the word for this. How does anyone especially the Pope interrupt a priest or prelate saying Mass? It makes me want to vomit.

There is a rumor that Pope Francis may rescind Summorum Pontificum but is merely waiting for Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI to drop dead first. I would rather see Pope Francis drop dead first than see Summorum Pontificum rescinded. But I totally believe this man will do it when the time comes. The modernists hate the Latin Mass, and they will destroy it.

Pope Francis has no love for the eucharist. It is said that he does not genuflect during the consecration nor drops to his knees during adoration. This might be forgivable if he has weak knees, but weak knees has never been a problem for him doing this:


Allowing unrepentant adulterers to take communion isn't such a big deal when you don't believe in the Real Presence. And that, Gentle Reader, would be the real question the remaining three cardinals should ask the Holy Father. Do you believe in Transubstantiation?

I don't think modernists believe in the Real Presence. This is why they have no problem with diminishing the Mass with Novus Ordo abuses, gay masses, and abominable architectural abortions that make airports and office buildings look beautiful in comparison. For them, communion is merely a community meal of sharing and caring. Their goal is to make this the standard in every parish:


Pope Francis is the modernist pope. He is on their side. He heaps praise upon the modernists while scorning traditional Catholics. He deposes faithful prelates while promoting and defending faithless prelates connected to vile practices and heretical teachings. And I know that worse things are still to come.

God wins in the end. Bad popes like Francis must be endured as a trial and as a cross. I pray that the faith of the faithful will remain strong. Fortitude will be needed as we patiently endure the things we cannot change. Pope Francis is God's chastisement of the Roman Catholic Church.

3. SMARTPHONE RANT OF THE WEEK

One of my frequent criticisms of smartphones is that they are actually pornphones allowing men to take the internet with them to places like the bathroom for the purpose of lust and self-abuse. There's a reason I don't touch another man's smartphone. I already know where it has been, and it makes me want to vomit. Now, there comes this article about what smartphones are doing to kids as they access the same sick pornography as the adults.

I don't look at pornography. It hurts my conscience. The temptation to look at porn is negated in my life by the fact that I do not own a smartphone. My computer is a desktop model that remains in the living room. I own a Chromebook that my wife has hijacked. It travels from the living room to the kitchen and back again. It is never used in private. Plus, all my devices have an image of the Blessed Virgin Mary as a wallpaper. This is what I call the "Catholic Guilt Ray." It works.

Children shouldn't have smartphones. Unlike the people in the article, I go one step further and think that adults shouldn't have smartphones either.

4. QUOTABLE QUOTES

I would have people in time of silence take good heed that their minds be occupied with good thoughts, for unoccupied they will never be.
SAINT THOMAS MORE

I learned, in my heart, a notion Thomas Aquinas expressed in Scholastic doctrine: that the blessed in heaven must enjoy the torment of the wicked in hell.
MICHAEL BRENDAN DOUGHERTY

One of the sad signs of our times is that we have demonized those who produce, subsidized those who refuse to produce, and canonized those who complain.
THOMAS SOWELL

They not only fail from resisting this frailty [ of fallen human nature]…but do even worse as they commit the cursed sin against nature. Like the blind and stupid having dimmed the light of the understanding, they do not recognze the disease and misery in which they find themselves. For this not only causes Me nausea, but displeases even the demons themselves, whom these miserable creatures have chosen as their lords. For Me, this sin against nature is so abominable that , for it alone, five cities were submersed, by virtue of the jugdment of My Divine Justice, which could no longer bear them…It is disagreable to the demon, not because evil displeases them and they find pleasure in good, but because their nature is angelic and thus is repulsed upon seeing such an enormous sin being commited. It is true that it is the demons who hits the sinner with the poisoned arrow of lust, but when a man carries out such a sinful act, the demons leave.
ST. CATHERINE OF SIENA

Those offences which be contrary to nature are everywhere and at all times to be held in detestation and punished; such were those of the Sodomites, which should all nations commit, they should all be held guilty of the same crime by the divine law, which hath not so made men that they should in that way abuse one another. For even that fellowship which should be between God and us is violated, when that same nature of which He is author is polluted by the perversity of lust.
ST. AUGUSTINE

No sin in the world grips the soul as the accursed sodomy; this sin has always been detested by all those who live according to God.… Deviant passion is close to madness; this vice disturbs the intellect, destroys elevation and generosity of soul, brings the mind down from great thoughts to the lowliest, makes the person slothful, irascible, obstinate and obdurate, servile and soft and incapable of anything; furthermore, agitated by an insatiable craving for pleasure, the person follows not reason but frenzy.… They become blind and, when their thoughts should soar to high and great things, they are broken down and reduced to vile and useless and putrid things, which could never make them happy.... Just as people participate in the glory of God in different degrees, so also in hell some suffer more than others. He who lived with this vice of sodomy suffers more than another, for this is the greatest sin.
ST. BERNARDINE OF SIENA

5. ODDS AND ENDS

--Much of the pathology and poverty in India can be blamed on the corrosive effects of Hinduism.

--George Clooney is a ridiculous leftwing celebrity hypocrite. He campaigned for opening up Europe and the UK to migrants. Now, he is retreating back to the USA over "security concerns." Amazing how things change when it is your wife and kids in harm's way.

--Charlie Gard will probably die even if he manages to escape the British healthcare system. It is a pro-life issue, but it is even more of a pro-parent issue. Governments bend over backward to help women kill their babies in abortion. Yet, the Charlie Gard affair is about parents who want to take their baby home.

6. LINKS OF INTEREST

The Benedict Option & the Barbarians at the Gate

If your life is utterly ordinary, you might well be on the right track

Why You Can Expect Increased Violence When The Left Is Out Of Power

The Liberal Jesuit Captivity of the Papacy

Pope Benedict’s Great Restoration


7.04.2017

Wheat and Weeds


Another parable he proposed to them, saying: The kingdom of heaven is likened to a man that sowed good seeds in his field.

But while men were asleep, his enemy came and oversowed cockle among the wheat and went his way.

And when the blade was sprung up, and had brought forth fruit, then appeared also the cockle.

And the servants of the goodman of the house coming said to him: Sir, didst thou not sow good seed in thy field? whence then hath it cockle?

And he said to them: An enemy hath done this. And the servants said to him: Wilt thou that we go and gather it up?

And he said: No, lest perhaps gathering up the cockle, you root up the wheat also together with it.
Suffer both to grow until the harvest, and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers: Gather up first the cockle, and bind it into bundles to burn, but the wheat gather ye into my barn.
MATTHEW 13:24-30 DOUAY-RHEIMS

I have officially been Roman Catholic for four years. I entered the Church at the same time that Francis became pope. That is the way my life has been for as long as I have known it. Something good happens to me while I am also delivered a frustration. When I became Catholic, a material heretic took the chair of St. Peter, and I knew it. Then, my priest died shortly after my entrance into the Church.

What do I think of the Roman Catholic Church at this stage of the journey? I must admit that I am not so impressed anymore. I had a low opinion of the Church as a Protestant and as a Calvinist. I definitely had a low opinion of the Church as an atheist. Now that I am in the Church and have seen it from the inside, my low opinion is actually lower now.

Why did I ever join up for this? The answer to that is simple. The Roman Catholic Church is the one true church containing the deposit of the One True Faith. I believe in Jesus Christ. I believe He is the Son of God, and that He actually rose from the dead. And I believe that He instituted one church. Obedience to Christ means becoming Catholic and remaining Catholic. This is not an issue for negotiation or debate. Once you know that the Roman Catholic Church is the true church, you have a duty and an obligation to get into it and stay in it. Should you refuse to do these things, you will go to Hell.

That is some scary stuff, but there it is. Don't let anyone say that I sugarcoat things because I don't. The Roman Catholic Church is God's instrument of salvation in the world. If you spurn this institution, you will be judged for rejecting Christ. You cannot love Christ and not love His Church or be disobedient to His vicar.

The Martin Luthers of today, our Protestant brothers and sisters separated from the Church by massive ignorance perpetrated and passed down by lying ministers of Satan, point out that the Roman Catholic Church is rife with scandal and corruption. How can I disagree with these observations? It is based in fact. I could chalk it up to bias in the media but even faithful Catholic media report these things which you will find tweeted and retweeted on my Twitter account. From the Pope on down, there are many who distort doctrine, deny doctrine, mishandle funds, scandalize the faithful, and even engage in gross sexual sins and encourage others in this debauchery. Granted, there are those who preserve the faith in both word and deed, but they are the minority in this day and age. This begs another question. Why remain in this?

Conservative writer Rod Dreher was faced with this dilemma after converting to the Roman Catholic Church in 1993. While covering the sex abuse scandal, he became so disillusioned because of the filth that he uncovered that he checked out and became Eastern Orthodox. This is understandable considering that the man has kids. It isn't justifiable, but I do understand. But the problem with the Eastern Orthodox is that they aren't free of the filth either. The sad reality is that sexual abuse of minors is a widespread problem and is present in virtually every institution including scouts, public schools, little league sports, and on and on. This isn't to excuse the wrongdoing in the Catholic Church. But as I say so often, when the Church is bad, it is merely as bad as the rest of the world.

JERRY SANDUSKY: Not a Catholic priest.
So, if the Roman Catholic Church has so much filth and corruption, what makes it special relative to all of the other filthy and corrupt institutions in the world? This is a question I asked myself before my conversion, and I had to admit one thing. There were no Protestant saints. There certainly were no atheist saints. All of the saints I knew about were in the Catholic Church. There are two things I know. No one can be saint without God's help and grace. And there are no saints outside of the Roman Catholic Church.

The Eastern Orthodox may quibble with me on this matter, but I will simply point to the emperor Constantine who was no saint. He did not lead a venerable life and spurned baptism until he was on his deathbed. His "canonization" is more of a popularity vote than an actual fact. The Roman Catholic Church never canonized the man. As such, any saint not recognized by the Roman Catholic Church is not a saint to me.

Saints aren't perfect, but their lives are so radically different from the world as to make them very special to me. In his novel, The Plague, Albert Camus asks, "Can an atheist be a saint?" My answer is that atheists can be saints only in fiction. They have never existed in fact and never will. This was a conclusion I drew as an atheist.


The saint that I drew the most inspiration from was Maximilian Kolbe. His story moved me profoundly because he lived in relatively modern times. Other saints have lived so long ago that their stories have become mixed with legends and myths. But Kolbe was the bona fide real deal. And his final act of charity to save a condemned man by taking his place puts him on the same level as the great saints and martyrs of old in my book. Yet, he is virtually unknown outside of the Catholic Church. What an awesome human being. Everyone should aspire to be a Kolbe.

It is saints like Kolbe that make the Catholic Church special to me. There are heroes, but a saint is more than just a hero. The hero seeks glory. The saint seeks a crown to cast at the Savior's feet. That is a profoundly different thing.

So, there you have it. The Roman Catholic Church is a mix of otherworldly saints, lots of faithful people who seek to become saints, and some of the lowest scum who would bring shame on a prison full of convicts. Basically, the Church is a mixture of wheat and weeds.

Our Lord told us this in Matthew 13. Whenever Jesus uses the phrase "kingdom of heaven," He is referring to the Roman Catholic Church. He is not talking about Heaven itself as He discusses how the enemy, the Devil, has sown weeds into the field. Heaven is free of such weeds, so the kingdom of heaven and Heaven itself are not synonymous. Nor is He talking about the world because the world is certainly not the kingdom of heaven. It is the Catholic Church which is the kingdom of Christ on earth.

SOCIETY OF JUDAS

In His parable of the wheat and the weeds, Jesus tells us that the wheat was planted, but the weeds were the work of an enemy who came and planted his evil seed. We can see that this is what happened with the Catholic Church virtually as soon as it was established as even the Apostles themselves had to struggle and battle with heretics at the outset like the Judaizers and the Gnostics. These heresies would flourish alongside orthodoxy all the way to the present day. Some of the lowest points for the Church were the virtual domination of the Arian heresy that came later, the Cathars, the Protestant Revolt, and the modernism of today. All of these weeds are the work of Satan.

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't read about some scandal involving a priest or a bishop. Their actions are criminal in an extreme way that would make a mafioso blush. Additionally, many prelates and priests exhibit no belief in the Real Presence and actively push and promote heresy in a multitude of ways. Now, we have a pope who seems to be firmly on the side of the modernists.

All of the scandal and heresy in the Church begs a question. The question isn't why is the Church so corrupt. The real question is why corrupt people would want to be in the Church. Think about it. If you were gay and an atheist, why would you ever become a priest? Why would you ever take vows to join a religious order? And if you despised the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church, why be Catholic when there are literally thousands of Protestant denominations and sects to suit you? This behavior would be like the Democrats deciding they didn't care about winning elections and that the better way to go would be to become Republicans to tear the party down from the inside. That is insanity and virtually no Democrat does this. But this is what has happened and still happens with the Roman Catholic Church.

The heretics, liars, thieves, and perverts inside the Roman Catholic Church arrive there and remain there under satanic inspiration. They are literally agents of the Devil himself. They do the work and bidding of Lucifer. They are the Devil's weeds in the wheatfield of the Lord, and their mission is to corrupt and subvert the mission of the Church.

The servants in the parable ask a pertinent question. Should we go and root out these weeds? The good man tells them no. For the sake of the wheat, the weeds must be allowed to grow. This is because you cannot tell the difference between one and the other. It is only when the wheat yields its grain that we can tell the wheat from the weeds. This is because the Church is made up of sinners. I am one of those sinners believing at one time in things that I now oppose. I was a Protestant, a Calvinist, an atheist, and on and on. And, then, God opened my eyes, and I repented. It is for the sake of people like me that God tolerates the evil in the world and in the Church.

In conclusion, the only thing I can tell you is to be the wheat. This means embracing the One True Faith, holding firmly to the Magisterium, and working on becoming a saint through the sacraments, devotions, prayer, examination of conscience, and works of mercy. The parable concludes with the harvesting of the wheat into the barn and the binding of the weeds to be burned. The barn is Heaven. The fire is Hell. The evildoers in the Church and all those who work for the Devil will receive their reward. They will be tormented in everlasting damnation forever. Be the wheat.