Monthly Archives: July 2014

A friend brought to my attention a piece by the well-respected Dr. William Oddie, which can be found here. Its title, “Is there Growing Confusion over Church Teaching?”, is perfect because there clearly is. What has surprised me is that the confusion seems to be on the part of Oddie and the rest who have defended the orthodox-sounding statement of a Fr. Tarcisio Vicario. Here’s the backstory.

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According to writer Emma Roller, Elizabeth Warren has won the hearts of liberals these days. Hillary is the establishment candidate and so the safe, reasonable candidate; but boy do liberals want Warren to run. Roller explains that the latter has the political and rhetorical chops as well as the passion to continue the progressive movement’s move on the national stage.

At a recent rally, Warren laid out 11 tenets of progressivism. Here they are, as laid out by Roller, with my commentary.

– “We believe that Wall Street needs stronger rules and tougher enforcement, and we’re willing to fight for it.” [unless it means – as President Obama discovered – actually passing laws that hurt the Wall Street that contributes to Democrats]

– “We believe in science, and that means that we have a responsibility to protect this Earth.” [and submit the poor to increasingly oppressive prices for energy, yeah! meanwhile the U.S. scientific community’s data shows that the U.S. has cooled in the last decade]

– “We believe that the Internet shouldn’t be rigged to benefit big corporations, and that means real net neutrality.” [through oversight by the government which never ever submits to corporate cronyism, right? right?]

– “We believe that no one should work full-time and still live in poverty, and that means raising the minimum wage.” [which will really only helps a small fraction of poor households, while helping the rich a lot, but hey it makes me look good to want it, sooo]

– “We believe that fast-food workers deserve a livable wage, and that means that when they take to the picket line, we are proud to fight alongside them.” [i’m just pandering now]

– “We believe that students are entitled to get an education without being crushed by debt.” [so we’re going to enact policy to address the root cause of skyrocketing tuition costs – oh… no, we’re going to provide students with better personal financial – no… i see, we’re introducing bills that have no hope of passing and don’t actually help in order to demonize republicans. right. sorry. i forgot.]

– “We believe that after a lifetime of work, people are entitled to retire with dignity, and that means protecting Social Security, Medicare, and pensions.” [until around 2030 when even the CBO agrees it will all crumble and we can still blame Republicans for our inaction]

– “We believe—I can’t believe I have to say this in 2014—we believe in equal pay for equal work.” [unless you work for a Democratic President named Barack Obama]

– “We believe that equal means equal, and that’s true in marriage, it’s true in the workplace, it’s true in all of America.” [because marriage “equality” is a top priority for the poor in this country…]

– “We believe that immigration has made this country strong and vibrant, and that means reform.” [unless it means compromising with Republicans we don’t like, and taking away a great election year issue.]

– “And we believe that corporations are not people, that women have a right to their bodies. We will overturn Hobby Lobby and we will fight for it. We will fight for it!” [and thus trample on an overwhelmingly bipartisan law because unthinking rhetoric will always win the day.]

Apparently Warren had one other tenet to share. This is the central tenet of conservatives, according to the Senator from Massachusetts: “I got mine. The rest of you are on your own.” [which is different from saying “I’m a Native American and the rest of you can’t say otherwise.”]



I begin with this piece on an experiment on “magical thinking.” Rationalists, always so optimistic about how rational human beings want to be, were rather surprised to discover just how irrational modern men can be. A pair of psychologists from Yale University, Newman and Bloom, decided to publish a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on how people behave towards the inanimate objects once owned by famous people. Here’s what they did.

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My very good wife gave me a great gift for Father’s Day. With air miles which were going to expire anyway, she got me a subscription to the Wall Street Journal. I had never had one before. We couldn’t justify the price on our tight budget, but a former roommate and my brother had had one. WallStreetJournal

I have loved getting the paper for the last few weeks but some wonderful thing has happened that I did not even consider until I got my first copies: the format has encouraged me to read about things I would normally never bother with. Read More