Saturday, February 21, 2004
Is the Albany County Coroner on vacation?
If it was an apparent suicide, I have never known for it to take over a week to make a preliminary announcement if it was death by natural causes, an accident, a suicide or a suspicious homicide.
If it is still suspicious the police ought to start a regular homicide investigation before the physical evidence is lost, witnesses begin to lose their the details in their memory, etc.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:34 PM Permalink
A Reluctant Champion.
It took a few days, but Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is saying the right things about gay marriage.
How unexpected that his insertion into national politics comes on this issue. I suspect that he wanted his mastery of the budget deficit to be that issue that would get him invited to the talking-head shows.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:18 PM Permalink
Lead us not into temptation
The near occasions of sin didn't make it into the Catechism of the Catholic Church, although paragraph 2847 discusses the discernment of temptation.
Part of the tradition form of penance is not only sorrow for past sins, but a resolve to avoid the occasions of sin.
For those of you wondering what the distinction between temptation and the occasions of sin, it is:
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:21 PM Permalink
Life Goes on in Phoenix
The atmosphere inside Aryanfest was that of a Renaissance Fair gone over to the dark side, with "Heils" in place of "Huzzahs." Costumed attendees wore Iron Cross medallions and black bomber jackets emblazoned with swastika patches instead of studded leather armor and princess dresses.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:24 AM Permalink
Friday, February 20, 2004
An outbreak of sanity
A recess appointment for Bill Pryor.
Next let us have Robert Bork, Kenneth Starr, Ted Olson. I'd even go for Rudy Giuliani as recess appointment if he'd take the pay cut.
Bring it on.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:14 PM Permalink
An outbreak of anarchy
At the 2PM ET newsbreak there was a clerk who said
On my own authority, I see no law barring the issuance of marriage licenses to gay couples, so I will do so until I receive an opinion otherwise from the attorney general.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:08 PM Permalink
What Rush Limbaugh was struggling with...
Thinking out loud, Rush said that something didn't add up in the pressure for legal Gay Marriage in Mass. and the civil disobedience for Gay Marriage in San Francisco.
I'm disappointed he didn't recognize it right away. Let's see if it mentions it after 1PM ET:
Liberals use the rule of law, they don't follow it.
They expect conservatives to follow the law, respect the law, not amend the constitution, etc. on one hand
On the other hand, they don't believe themselves to be constrained by the law because they believe it is their right to change the law and while that change is pending to disregard it.
Rush's weak defense of Bush's inaction
Rush said that the political timing wasn't right for Bush to take immediately action. Let's see how this plays out.
Why should the constitution be amended to affirm what it's always meant?
Because we can no longer trust the judges/justices to regard precedent in liberal hot buttons. Just as the Roe majority thought abortion to be inevitable-unstoppable, I think there's a majority now who would regard gay marriage the same way.
Bush, Hastert, and Frist should make a joint television appearance today to put the FMA at the top of the Congressional schedule.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:00 PM Permalink
Islam Online: Controversy Rages on “The Passion of The Christ”
Well, the verdict is still out on The Passion of The Christ. Is it unfair to Jews? Is it an accurate Biblical portrayal? Is the buzz justified? For Muslims, the fiery debate does not matter much, since Islam’s view of the crucifixion story is entirely different. The Qur'an’ says Jesus was not killed or crucified, only the likeness of that was shown to the people, and Jesus was saved and raised up unto Allah. (4:157-158.)
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:09 AM Permalink
Albany Times Union: Bishop Hubbard gets a probe at $770 per hour
[Mary Jo White] only agreed to this assignment because of its importance and because the employer -- the [Albany] diocesan review board, not the bishop [Hubbard] or diocese proper -- was willing to meet all her conditions of accessability to information, and the discretion to look into just about anything she deems appropriate.
I may have been hasty in my judgment that this is a whitewash. I really like the part about a simultaneuous release of the report.
I expect a resignation -- either Hubbard's as he knows the evidence that is out there to lay guilt at his feet -- or Ms. White's as she is certain to be blocked in her attempt to get access to files.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:00 AM Permalink
Thursday, February 19, 2004
Tell your friends, start now...
To read the passion accounts in the four gospels.
For a some of us, we'll be able to recite the dialog Ecce Homo and Quod scripsi scripsi but for others of us, we will see these 12 hours as we've never seen them before because:
Do not underestimate this: Millions of people will see, hear, and think about the suffering and death of Our Lord who have never done so before.
I don't plan on taking my 10-year-old son to see the movie in the theater by the way -- it is R-rated.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:57 PM Permalink
NRO: She Was a Teenaged Blogger
My 14-year-old blogger daughter got Instalanched last week, after she wrote about how her English teacher had ridiculed her in front of the class for writing an un-p.c. paper. I've heard what happens when the mighty Instapundit's Glenn Reynolds links you but never seen it up close, and it really is amazing: From 100 hits a day (typical for a teenager's blog) to 100 an hour, with links to dozens of other blogs and almost 200 posted comments from Edinburgh to Auckland.
Sorry this is a few days old, but a very interesting read nonetheless of how deep the political-correctness reach goes.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:14 PM Permalink
AP: Stern's Stuttering John goes to Jay Leno
Jay Leno's new announcer on NBC's The Tonight Show will be "Stuttering" John Melendez from Howard Stern's radio show, a spokeswoman said.Stuttering John was one of the reasons I listened to the Stern show -- in the mid-90's when it was funny. As Stern's marriage was falling apart the show become relentlessly sexual and infused with his depression. His life became a train wreck -- and so was the show.
Howard Stern was born about a month before me in Jackson Heights only 10 blocks away from me. So I was always interested in the progress of his career.
A baby sitter for my kids once had a baby sitter -- Stuttering John's mom. Small world, eh?
The attraction of Stern for me (that is to around 1998) was how ordinary and small problems affected him and his cast of characters -- he poked fun at everyone in show business in a funny. not a cruel, way. He changed and maybe I changed too.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:00 PM Permalink
AP: Faith and fury propel Gibson's 'Passion'
It's a clash of power, religion and history more fit for the apocalyptic Book of Revelation than the pages of Variety.
Abe Foxman left the Vatican a disappointed man. He got no statement labelling TPOTC an anti-Semitic film.
Just as I predicted here.
Things have moved on now: Going after Hutton Gibson, Mel's father.
How come Woody Harrelson gets a Hollywood pass when this is his dad?
Father, Charles Voyde Harrelson, has been convicted twice for committing paid murders. Once in 1968 and again in 1978 (for the murder of Federal Judge John Wood).
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:05 PM Permalink
New York Post: Nativity Scene ruled "religious"; Menorah and Islamic Crescent ruled "secular"
February 19, 2004 -- A federal judge has ruled that a city can continue to ban the display of nativity scenes at its public schools - while allowing other "secular" holiday symbols, including Christmas trees, menorahs and the Islamic star. A Catholic Queens mom had filed a suit against the city Department of Education in 2002, claiming the policy discriminated against her two sons and other Christian students.
We will see more reaction on this from Catholic and Christian sources in the hours and days to come.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:16 AM Permalink
Loser-faux-Catholics for loser-Dean-loser
Be sure to check out Catholics For Dean one more time before it goes to that great Webmaster in Heaven for judgment.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:47 AM Permalink
Who is Mary Jo White?
ALBANY, N.Y. -- A former US attorney best known for prosecuting terrorism cases will investigate sexual abuse allegations against Albany Roman Catholic Bishop Howard Hubbard, a diocese spokesman said yesterday.Mary Jo White is perfect for a whitewash of Hubbard. Just Google her name and "Torricelli" or "Teamster pardons" or "Rich pardon" or "New Square pardons" and you will see what I mean.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:43 AM Permalink
Who killed Fr. Minkler? (2)
For a case where there was a suspicious death, it seems odd to me that murder has not been ruled out 5 days after the discovery of the body.
Troy Record: Editorial: James V. Franco: Debate sparked by Hubbard allegations has many layers Discusses the letter accusing Hubbard of homosexual acts.
WXXA-TV Albany NY: Unanswered Questions Read to get a local flavor of what's going on.
Capital News 9: Controversy surrounds priest's death Has statements from Stephen Brady of Roman Catholic Faithful and Paul Likoudis of the Wanderer.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:30 AM Permalink
Wednesday, February 18, 2004
A daily habit
Keep reading the messages regarding the condition of Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:12 PM Permalink
Jayson Williams in court showing the cross.
Jayson Williams is on trial for manslaughter -- he was criminally negligent in fooling around with a shotgun among friends and a chauffeur -- shooting and killing Gus Christofi, the chauffeur.
Williams panicked moved the body, delayed in calling 911, attempted to remove the physical evidence, etc. And maintained that Christofi shot himself square in the chest.
From the moment the police arrived, they knew it wasn't a suicide.
Besides the 2 inch silver cross, there's a used well-thumbed copy of the Bible.
Yesterday's testimony: he kept all six of his guns loaded.
The prosecution alleges that Williams and his companions were drunk and abusive towards Christofi. Williams was in the middle of cursing at Christofi as he pulled the trigger.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:17 PM Permalink
Pete Vere has proposed a get-together for Catholic bloggers in the New York City area
Details on Envoy's blog
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:47 PM Permalink
For those of you who want to see inside the mind of a bishop
In another blog disagraced Archbishop was mentioned. He resigned after being accused of having multiple affairs with women but particularly women under the age of legal consent.
He denied the allegations made on 60 Minutes. They were never the subject of a civil or criminal case. I have suspected that blackmail was attempted and declined in this case.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:27 PM Permalink
New York Post: Jews Take Battle Over Mel's 'Passion' to Vatican
February 18, 2004 -- A prominent Jewish critic of Mel Gibson's upcoming movie, "The Passion of the Christ," visited the Vatican yesterday and asked the Catholic Church to tell its faithful the film is "Mel's gospel" and not an accurate rendition of biblical truth.
Has anyone in the Vatican ever hinted that Gibson's account was not faithful to the Gospel?
I think Abe is going to be embarassed on this attempt. The Vatican might affirm that The Passion of the Christ is the Gospel.
For one thing Abe Foxman is out of his depth: as a non-believer he can't accept any account as "true" or "accurate" which would portray Jesus as Lord. Abe doesn't believe in "Gospel truth", not even in the "Gospels" themselves.
For another thing, I don't think the Vatican wants to be used in an ADL publicity campaign: Vatican opposes film which quotes Gospel accounts of the passion doesn't look right to me.
As Mel said his critics don't have a problem with him, they have a problem with the New Testament.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:29 AM Permalink
Who Killed Fr. John Minkler?
I tried to find the press conference that disclosed the existence of the nine-year-old letter to Cardinal O'Connor -- you know -- the one that accused Bishop Hubbard of being a homosexual, requiring priests to be his sexual slaves, abuse of his office, etc. and asked for an investigation. Of course, nothing was done by the Cardinal and the only consequence of the whole thing was to put Fr. John Minkler under the screws.
I can't find a press account of that press conference.
I wish a real journalist could connect the dots and explain how a press conference that apparently no one covered could be the trigger to get Bishop Hubbard to make Fr. Minkler an offer he couldn't refuse: put your signature on a statement denying your authorship of a nine-year-old letter that was ignored.
If that nine-year-old letter was false, why bother?
Knowing now what happened to Fr. Minker, if you had the truth, would you want to step forward now and tell your story?
Perhaps you would be the first witness in the Church's sexual abuse scandal to join the federal witness protection program.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:37 AM Permalink
Is it just me?
Or has the sin (or crime) that dare not speak its name, become the sin the just won't shut up?
This is a cultural movement that is working on us, exhausting us, wearing us down like Sugar Ray Leonard on Roberto Duran in 1980: "No mas".
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:41 AM Permalink
Tuesday, February 17, 2004
The World of Ragnarok Online
It's a virtual world. You play through these characters who appear on the screen. It's a MMORPG -- massively multiplayer online role playing game.
The team of programmers and artists in South Korea who developed it appear to have borrowed freely from the symbols of European history.
The one I enlarged from the knight above is The Sacred Heart of Jesus and rather than a single crown of thorns, it is a double belt of fire.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:54 PM Permalink
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:47 PM Permalink
AP: Phoenix bishop convicted in deadly hit-run
PHOENIX - Bishop Thomas O'Brien was convicted of hit-and-run Tuesday for leaving the scene after killing a jaywalking pedestrian with his Buick, a crash that ended his career as head of the Roman Catholic diocese.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:03 PM Permalink
I confess to this court...
A Catholic priest has pled guilty to stealing approximately $50,000 from Martin of Tours Roman Catholic Church in Bethpage, the Nassau district attorney said.
No action taken yet on this guy's laicization.
He lived about 10 blocks from me. According to his neighbors, nobody knew he was a priest.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 3:10 PM Permalink
Washington Post: Turning Librarians Into Babysitters
If there's snow on the ground and school is canceled, the phones at George Mason Regional Library are likely to begin ringing an hour before the doors open.
I know the New York Times and other papers have run stories on the same topic. It's happening everywhere.
I became aware of this is a personal way when a 7-year old child was running around bleeding in the library and I asked "Where's your mom or your dad?"
I got no answer and brought the librarian over to the child. I learned that she was a "drop-off". The librarian had no choice but to call an ambulance for a cut that would be taken care of with a band-aid because of fear of being sued if the parent who would come shortly before the 8 PM closing and didn't believe the story that the first aid given at the library was inadequate.
I asked "Why not invite a caseworker from Child Protective Services over to inquire why these children were running around without supervision from 3 to 8PM?" I was told that the parents would make up some phony complaint of abuse by the librarians in retaliation.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:10 PM Permalink
Beliefnet: John Dominic Crossan loses a "debate"
He tries to answer the question "Why did Jesus die?" and comes up empty-handed -- or should that be empty-headed?
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:21 PM Permalink
Leaks. Expect more.
Children accused more than 4,000 priests of sexual abuse between 1950 and 2002, according to a draft survey for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Now, that's what I call getting your arms around a problem.
Knowing this was coming -- that's the best comment you can make? Heaven help us!
CNN observes the proper protocol in not identifying the age or sex of the victims, lest the reader conclude that this is a homosexual problem.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:53 AM Permalink
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:51 AM Permalink
New York Post: Mystery surrounds priest's "suicide"
February 17, 2004 -- ALBANY - Police are investigating the strange death of a longtime priest - a leading critic of Albany Bishop Howard Hubbard, who is fighting charges of homosexual activity.
Very suspicious. This is a critic of Hubbard with a spotless record who tried and to alert Cardinal O'Connor of the problems in Albany and was ignored by the Cardinal (for that matter, like every other person who brought a complaint against any bishop) back in 1995.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:44 AM Permalink
ABC News: Pain and Passion
About the interview. It is not a transcript. If I find a link to that , I will certainly post it.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:29 AM Permalink
Diane: Are you an anti-semite?
Mel: Are you?
In reality, he took the question as a non-insult and proceeded to deny he was an anti-semite and to condemn anti-semitism in any form.
It was so interesting to see Diane maintain her aloofness looking on Mel not as a fellow performer in "Show Business" but as some sort of alien life form.
I liked his "God made my bed this morning comment." Some Aquinas influence there - God as the ultimate efficient cause.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:06 AM Permalink
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:34 AM Permalink
Monday, February 16, 2004
Newday: Accused Priests Still on Job
B'klyn diocese says abuse charges unsubstantiated so far
The whole article is a masterpiece of doubletalk.
Yes -- we know while an investigation is pending they are supposed to be suspended but...
For me this is a huge disappointment in our new Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio that these accused priests are in ministry before they are cleared.
This is the week of the bishop's lecture on "Send us your money". -- The Stewardship Appeal
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:13 PM Permalink
AP via Dhimmi Watch: U.S. May Veto Islamic Law in Iraq
Paul Bremer has apparently weighed in against Sharia in Iraq. From AP:The top U.S. administrator in Iraq suggested Monday he would block any interim constitution that would make Islam the chief source of law, as some members of the Iraqi Governing Council have sought.
We can hope that there's a balance between the desire for Islamo-fascism and democracy and that the Iraqis realize that balance before it's too late.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 6:11 PM Permalink
ABC News: Mel Gibson Interview
At "the height of spiritual bankruptcy" more than a decade ago, abusing alcohol and drugs, the actor Mel Gibson said he once contemplated hurling himself out a window.Check local listings. When I see the interview I will have more to say.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:13 PM Permalink
Boston Globe: Unwelcome feeling
On Feb. 1, [Bevil] Conway, a Harvard neurobiologist, had been assisting in the 9:30 a.m. Mass as an altar server, and after Mass, he saw the table, staffed by [Karl] Wirth and another man.
Intersting spin, this is a confrontation inside a Catholic Church over Catholic teaching, and on that issue the best they can come up with is "unwelcome feeling". Who exactly in unwelcome in the Church according to Conway's own design? Would Karl Wirth be? Would Karol Wojtyla? Would Jesus?
Tore down some of the signs: The message there is next week it will be you hanging from the lampposts.
Blogger credit: Amy Welborn 61 comments there.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:31 PM Permalink
The Australian: Alexandra Polier had no time for affair with Kerry
She has the perkiness of a cheerleader and the ambition of a Hollywood starlet, but it's hard to believe Alexandra Polier ever had an affair with US Democratic presidential frontrunner John Kerry.AP: Woman Denies Affair With Kerry
A woman who has been the subject of rumors linking her to Sen. John Kerry (search) denied Monday that she ever had an affair with the Democratic presidential candidate.
It doesn't end here if there's other evidence. If Matt Drudge was fooled on this one, I'd be surprised. He doesn't like to be used like this. He makes a career of knocking all the journalists who get spun. And here he is being spun.
(Disclosure Statement: Like Fr. Benedict Groeschel CFR, for whom we should pray, and myself, Alexandra Polier is a graduate of Columbia University)
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:06 PM Permalink
Sunday, February 15, 2004
The Baltimore Catechism: The First Commandment of God
This is Wrong: (a) Buddha is God (b) Money is God (c) Science is God (d) Public Opinion is God.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:25 PM Permalink
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:25 PM Permalink
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:59 PM Permalink
Cleary, someone is lying here
After Gibson showed the film to Pope John Paul II, Gibson's publicist claimed that the pope said, "It is as it was," implying that he approved of the work. Papal secretary Archbishop Stanislaw Dziwisz later told the Catholic News Service that the pope never endorsed the movie. "Clearly, the Holy Father made no judgment of the film," he said.
The comment was passed on from Steve McEveety to Peggy Noonan of the Wall Street Journal and circulated worldwide on December 17, 2003.
That "later" was January 19, 2004, 32 days later. McEveety, Noonan, Allen, and others were accused of fabricating the quote and its confirmation from Dziwisz and Joaquin Navarro-Valls.
Neither Dziwisz or Navarro-Valls have elaborated further on how their absolute denials can be reconciled with the earlier reported statements and emails.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:11 PM Permalink
North Adams Transcript: Monsignor to lead diocese for interim
[Monsignor Richard] Sniezyk said neither he nor any other church officials have been in touch with Dupre since the allegations surfaced.
So let there be no doubt about it, Bishop Thomas Dupre has fled. If this were an orderly resignation, there would have been some provision for an administrator and communication between him and the bishop.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:15 AM Permalink
A very unfair article to the Intelligent Design movement. They mention Behe's concept in the quoted sentences above, but don't get his response to the claim from Darwinians that the microsyringe is a counter-example to his theory.
"Invoking God...is a kind of idolatry." That's an odd way to express the mystery of faith.
Behe has a problem: scientific journals print criticisms of ID, yet won't print the rebuttals supporting ID because they are not scientific enough. Being open-minded goes only so far.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:10 AM Permalink