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Patrick Sweeney 19711971
Patrick Sweeney 20032003
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Thursday, July 03, 2003
Episode 64 - Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up
Wintry February night, the present. Order of events: a phone call from a frightened woman notating the arrival of an unidentified flying object, then the check-out you've just witnessed with two state troopers verifying the event, but with nothing more enlightening to add beyond evidence of some tracks leading across the highway to a diner. You've heard of trying to find a needle in a haystack? Well, stay with us now and you'll be part of an investigating team whose mission is not to find that proverbial needle. No, their task is even harder. They've got to find a Martian in a diner, and in just a moment you'll search with them because you've just landed in the Twilight Zone.

Just got home, the Sci-Fi Channel has a Twilight Zone Marathon is on. Markets closed early. Where's my family?

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:13 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Slate, Michael Kinsley: Abolish Marriage
That solution is to end the institution of marriage. Or rather (he hastens to clarify, Dear) the solution is to end the institution of government-sanctioned marriage. Or, framed to appeal to conservatives: End the government monopoly on marriage.

Wait, I've got it: Privatize marriage. These slogans all mean the same thing. Let churches and other religious institutions continue to offer marriage ceremonies.

Let department stores and casinos get into the act if they want. Let each organization decide for itself what kinds of couples it wants to offer marriage to. Let couples celebrate their union in any way they choose and consider themselves married whenever they want.

Let others be free to consider them not married, under rules these others may prefer. And, yes, if three people want to get married, or one person wants to marry herself, and someone else wants to conduct a ceremony and declare them married, let 'em.

If you and your government aren't implicated, what do you care?

How ignorant of history and sociology he is.

One only has to look at the Domesday Book to get an idea that there's a connection between government and marriage. The recording of marriages is an important function because there are legal rights that are enforceable during marriage and of course, the government involvement is intensive in the matter of rights "after" the dissoution of a marriage in divorce. Inheritance or legacy refers to the dissolution of a marriage after death. The rights, of course, are the distribution of children, property, and in some cases claims to future income.

Such rights during and after marriage require in a practical way the registration of marriages, births, and deaths.

The idea is that marriage is more than a simple contract, but a connection to a new unit of society called a family that carries the responsbility for procreation and the raising of children:

Man, Woman, Sex, Babies (wait approx. 20 years) Mix well, repeat

Society has an interest in making sure that happens with some stability, education, and love in that approx. 20 years. It's about surivival. We need a definition of marriage amendment. It takes a some time to get the Constitution-changing machinery working.

For the record, if people without spouses or children want to designate an heir by registering their choice with a government, I'm in favor of that. I oppose laws that require employers who grant spousal benefits to grant the same to registered "domestic partners", we have such laws in New York.

PetersNet-HPR: Peter Riga (1982) Marriage and Indissolubility: a Historical Note is a good place to get a review of the ends of marriage.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:17 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Washington Times AP: Pope likely had few Boston options
The appointment of Bishop Sean O'Malley to head the Boston Archdiocese just months after he was sent to rebuild the church in Palm Beach, Fla., shows he is trusted by the Vatican but has raised questions about whether the Roman Catholic Church has too small a pool of capable leaders.

Hey, kids! We can put up a show. You can do scenery, and you can do the costumes, and I can direct.

American Bishop

The contest takes place in three rounds at three locales: Dallas, Phoenix, and the final, of course, in Boston:

Round 1: Political Can these bishops deal with pro-abortion Catholics including politicians and celebrities? Can they shut down schools, hospitals, and parishes that conflict with Catholic doctrine and practice? Can they encourage faithful Catholics? Look for your favorite anti-Catholics to play whack-a-mitre here.

Round 2: The World, The Flesh, and The Devil More demons (daemons) here than in an apocalyptic film! Bigger and better mansions than in the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous. All the way from a recent St. Sebastian's Angels Mr. Hedonism contest, male flesh to tempt and for those who go the other way, mistresses from Washington and New York fashionable fetish clubs. Note: all demons have obtained advanced theology degrees, this is not all about lust - but a diversity of perversity. All will be tempted, few will pass through with their souls intact. Special note: in the event that no bishops pass round 2, the series will be canceled.

Round 3: Meet the Family Do you think the scandal in the Church was accomplished solo by your predcessor? No way! Here's your team who will undermine any attempt to bring orthodoxy or orthopraxy to your diocese. In Rounds 1 and 2, you knew who your enemies were, now you don't! Did you slip earlier in the game? Then you've accumulated blackmail vulnerablity points that will bring down your score. As you eliminate enemies from your team, you have to replace them -- you conceive your own game within the game:

Who wants to be part of a diocesan administration?

Lightning Round: Only if you dare! Exchange your troubled priests for another diocese's troubled priests. Anything can happen!

The uncompensated judges are Saints Peter and Paul, and from the modern era St. Charles Borromeo and Pope St. Pius X.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:04 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Wednesday, July 02, 2003
AP: O'Brien was not alcohol-impaired during hit-and-run, prosecutors say

(re: Bishop Thomas O'Brien, former Bishop of Phoenix) I'm thankful that's the case. Arraignment on Monday July 7.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:50 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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July 2, 2003 -- The hunky male model who was Carolyn Bessette Kennedy's lover before she met John F. Kennedy Jr. still carried a torch for the last Queen of Camelot after her ill-fated marriage. Michael Bergin - whose chiseled good looks and muscular physique once loomed over Times Square in a 96-by-70-foot Calvin Klein underwear ad - had twice proposed marriage to Bessette, a one-time Klein publicist.

She turned him down - but continued to see him and sleep with him after moving in with young Kennedy, author Edward Klein reports in his book, "The Kennedy Curse: Why Tragedy Has Haunted America's First Family for 150 Years."

The linked article has a real hunky guy's photo.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:30 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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News From the first royal family of the United States


Andrew Cuomo decided to end his 13-year marriage to Kerry Kennedy Cuomo after learning she was having an extramarital affair, The Post has learned.

"She broke his heart - he's devastated," a friend of Cuomo's said yesterday.

Sources revealed details of Kerry's cheating and the couple's struggle to keep their failing union together the day after Cuomo's lawyer publicly charged that Kerry "betrayed" Andrew during their marriage

Kerry Kennedy is the daughter of Robert Kennedy, who Senator from New York in the 1960's. They were married in 1990 and have three pre-teen children.

From the adultery master himself:

Even Donald Trump, who's no stranger to divorce court, was surprised by Andrew's tone.

"I thought it was a terrible statement," Trump said. "If it didn't work, you get out. You say we both love each other, it's wonderful, but we're going our separate ways.

"I mean, he really seems to be taking it very hard. I don't think I've ever seen a statement like that from somebody, he's almost accusing her of infidelity . . . he's really much better off getting on with life."

No one less than Bill Clinton pulled Cuomo out of the race for governor in 2002 to let Carl McCall lose to George Pataki.

This is the end of Andrew Cuomo's political career. All because he expected a Kennedy to be faithful.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:15 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Slate: Incest Repellent? If gay sex is private, why isn't incest? By William Saletan

Back in April Saletan wrote this. With the decision in Lawrence advancing legal recognition to the marriage of homosexuals. This is worth another read.

His conclusion assumed the Lawrence outcome and is that there prohibitions against incest will not survive this constitutional test.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:27 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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There are many sound reasons for voting Republican in elections, but resisting the cultural revolution is not one of them. We live, not in a degenerate pagan society whose individuals are open to moral and spiritual conversion, but in a post-Christian society whose every principle is opposed to us. No election will change that reality.
He also makes the point that so-called "moderates" appointed by Republicans were at the heart of this: 7 including Kennedy who wrote the opinion. Only Ginsburg and Breyer were appointed by Clinton.

It's never been more clear that the only votes prepared to overturn Roe or at least get Roe implemented to protect the last three months of pregnancy are Rhenquist, Scalia, and Thomas.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:19 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Tuesday, July 01, 2003
Rod Dreher: Will sodomy decision invite social disorder?
The court's rash action brings to mind an exchange in the play A Man for All Seasons between Thomas More and the zealous crusader William Roper. More, arguing for the importance of law as a protective institution, tells Roper that he would leave the devil himself untouched until he broke the law.
Roper: So now you'd give the devil benefit of law!

More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get to the devil?

Roper: Yes! I'd cut down every law in England to do that.

More: Oh? And when the last law was down and the devil turned round on you – where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat?

The "great road" the court cut through American law in the Lawrence vs. Texas decision was the flattening of a rational jurisprudential basis to uphold a number of laws worth keeping. Justice Scalia writes, "State laws against bigamy, same-sex marriage, adult incest, prostitution, masturbation, adultery, fornication, bestiality and obscenity are likewise sustainable only in light of Bowers' validation of laws based on moral choices. Every single one of these laws is called into question by today's decision."

I been writing along the same lines since Lawrence was announced. here and in Mark Shea's blog and in Amy Welborn's blog.

This is the true slippery slope, a Supreme Court as an umbrella and uber city council, state legislature, and federal Congress. Privacy is so undefined. It's hard to believe where it can end.

Because the Supreme Court has created what amounts to special rights for homosexual persons. It will be interesting to see how there's going to be any constitutional principle to oppose gay marriage, group marriage, the civil benefits granted by marriage without a marriage (i.e. unmarried cohabitating heterosexual couples).

Rod's label of Social Disorder is accurate.

Transcript of the oral arguments (from March) still worth reading.

text of the judgment

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:21 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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BETA Google Toolbar

This is really cool. Cuts down on the time to add entries. So use it to link to extreme catholic

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 7:48 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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What we are.

We are engines of thought, word, and deed created for eternity.

We are not passive receptacles: food for the body, grace for the soul. We're the ghost in the machine and the machine is powered-on. (flesh robots? meat puppets?)

What are we? This is a question being asked in movies I like or love (and their sequels):

  • Lord of the Rings
  • Matrix
  • Terimnation

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:17 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Catholic League: Elites Promote Twisted Sense of Morality
Earlier this month, a defrocked Catholic priest from Missouri was sentenced to nearly five years in prison on charges he possessed child pornography.

Earlier this week, a former New York Law professor was sentenced to six months in jail for collecting 150,000 pictures of the most cruel and obscene portrayals of child pornography (the judge said she struggled over whether to send Professor Edward Samuels to jail). In the latter case, the professor was kept on the payroll by New York Law School for nearly a year after he was turned in by two technical staff members; the two who reported Samuels were instantly fired.

Bill Donohue has a good point. I would have headlined it "Double Standard Exposed".

Some of this may have to do with the venue as opposed to the occupation of the felon, but I agree that it's the fact that Samuels was one of the elites that gave him a pass until he was convicted.

See the St. Louis Dispatch for details on James Beine.

The outrage is that the heros in the Samuels case are not getting their jobs back or back-pay. The New York Post has the details.

Dorothea Perry and Rob Gross were fired by Collegis, Inc. which serviced computers for the New York Law School after reporting the porn on Samuels computers to the state authorities.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:16 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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The Nation: book review of My Brother's Keeper: A Memoir and a Message by Amitai Etzioni

Etzioni's disparate projects coalesced in 1990. The central idea of communitarianism--which he expounds on in The Spirit of Community: Rights, Responsibilities and the Communitarian Agenda (1993), The New Golden Rule: Community and Morality in a Democratic Society (1997) and Next: The Road to the Good Society (2001)--is that a society must balance liberal rights with community responsibilities.

Harvard Law professor Mary Ann Glendon has likened communitarianism to "democracy's environmentalist movement, helping to heighten awareness of the political importance and endangered condition of the seedbeds of civic virtue."

Communitarians conceive of society as a three-legged stool, held up by the forces of the state, the market and, yes, the community. They are skeptical of the rights-oriented, legalistic, interest-group politics of the liberal state.

A precursor to the "third way" movements of recent years, communitarians want to "leapfrog the old debate between left and right and focus on the role of the community, culture, and virtues rather than on either the private sector or the government," Etzioni writes.

Reasons for this item:

  • I'm fascinated by communitarians and distributists, and the Catholics that adopted this economic and political philosphy: Chesterton and Day, and the 21st century blogger brother and sisters who love it and them.
  • The linked reviewed has a few Dick Morris annecdotes.
  • I want to brag that I link to The Nation.
  • It confirms what my common sense tells me: "third way" movements are all either failures or frauds.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:59 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Monday, June 30, 2003
National Review: David Frum's Political Diary
This week, the Supreme Court overturned Bowers v. Hardwick. States will no longer be permitted to treat homosexuality as a crime. By the logic of Romer that leaves them (as this Supreme Court sees it) no option but to treat it as a protected category.

In other words, every form of distinction now drawn between homosexuality and heterosexuality – from the ban on avowed homosexuality in the military to the non-existence of same-sex marriage – has overnight become constitutionally suspect.

This is the most concise explanation I can find of the outcome of Lawrence v. Texas.

Bowers v. Hardwick upheld the sodomy law of Georgia.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:32 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Reuters: image of the Blessed Virgin Mary in window

Tens of thousands of people have come over the last several days to view this image in a hospital window that many believe resembles the Virgin Mary at Milton Hospital in Milton, Massachusetts, in the United States. Faced with a rush of pilgrims, the hospital said on Thursday it will cover the shimmering image to avoid further disruption. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

Is there a conspiracy to make sure that if people do anything that looks like traditional piety it's transformed into a silly circus like this?

For the record, this photo looks to me like nothing at all.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 3:55 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Sunday, June 29, 2003
Mystery Photo: Mud People
Filipino devotees with bodies covered in mud and wearing dried leaves and vines pray at a church in a bizarre religious tradition in the remote village of Bibiclat, Nueva Ecija province, northern Philippines on Tuesday June 24, 2003. Devotees believe that performing the ritual would grant their wishes during the feast day of their patron saint, St. John the Baptist. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:32 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Mystery Photo: Matrix Pigs
Roasted pigs dressed in costumes from the movie 'Matrix Reloaded' are displayed during a religious festival parade across Balayan town in Batangas city, south of Manila June 24, 2003. About 100 roasted pigs were featured in the parade coinciding with the feast of St. John the Baptist in the mainly Roman Catholic country. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:28 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Watching Julius Caesar on TNT
Julius Caesar Vercingetorix
As a fan of history I'm loving this movie. I guess to simplify history they left out of a few people that I would have left in. Richard Harris as Sulla was magnificent.

Jeremy Sisto played Jesus in another mini-series. I have that DVD.

But I'm rooting for Vercingetorix.

Also I discovered the same production company made a film called Good Pope John. It's aired in Italy but not in the United States. Bob Hoskins is Pope John XIII. Note that Bob Hoskins has also played Nikita Khrushchev. I've got that one on DVD as well as Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:19 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Netscape Home Page: They Said THIS In the Church Bulletin?
The sermon this morning: "Jesus Walks on the Water."
The sermon tonight: "Searching for Jesus."

Actually, I think they are including a lot of stuff they made up. After all, who is in a position to centrally collect all church bulletins?

And I think the picture of the "nuns" on the page is as phony as a three dollar bill.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 7:21 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Civics Questions

Is there an citizen of the United States reading the news now who could possibly believe that state legislatures have the authority to pass laws? It seems that the Supreme Court is supreme in all things political.

Hence, the obsession on the part of pro-abortion Democrats to keep the Supreme Court "supreme" and isolated from the small-d democracy where the person voting on law is facing voters every two or four years and he's elected with 5,000 votes.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:32 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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