Thursday, October 30, 2008

where have you gone Joe Dimaggio

Excerpts from a book called Why the Democrats Are Blue. byMark Stricherz (via Amy Wellborn)

It all came to a head in 1972, as most of us know, but even if you do know, Stricherz’s account of the 1972 convention is helpful and even riveting at times. What’s most interesting to me is that the abortion issue more or less came out of the blue. It was only the feminists who wanted it and McGovern’s people were actually rather frantic that it not become a part of the platform, knowing full well what it would do to the traditional party base.
It really is quite amazing to consider the transformation in the priorities of the Democratic party in just those few years - who in 1964 could have imagined that gay rights and abortion rights would become such a focus just a decade later.
As interesting as that was, I’ll tell you that the segment of the book that interested me the most was the material dealing with Carter in 1976. Only three years after Roe was decided, abortion was an ever bigger issue than it had been four years previously and a Human Life Amendment of some sort was a matter of serious discussion as a realistic possibility in many quarters.
Carter played both sides, but the party platform remained clearly in support of abortion rights, with a stated opposition to a constitutional amendment overturning Roe - a fact that prompted many bishops to make extremely strong statements, including - and this might surprise some - Cardinal Bernardin:

Archbishop Joseph Bernardin of Cincinnati, the head of the National Conference
of Catholic Bishops, blasted the party platform as ‘irresponsible’ and ‘morally
offensive in the extreme.’ On the eve of the Democratic convention, ten thousand
people rallied under a blazing sun in Central Park and marched to Madison Square
Garden to urge the party to oppose the abortion plank….The priest chosen to give
the closing benediction at the convention backed out, citing Carter and the
party’s stand on abortion.
It was soon realized that Carter had a “Catholic problem,” one not alleviated even by the efforts of staffers hired to specifically address it. On August 31, he met with six bishops in DC, including Bernardin:

At the August 31 meeting, [Bernardin] left no doubt about the importance he
assigned to the rights of unborn infants. Reading from a prepared statement, the
archbishop stressed the prelates’ insistence on a constitutional amendment that
‘will give the maximum protection possible to the unborn.” As Bernardin
explained, “If there is agreement that aobriotn is a moral evil because it
violated a person’s most basic right, then the only logical conclusion is that
something must be done to correct the evil; and the only remedy is a
constitutional amendment….Indeed without such a remedy, the effort to promote
other human life causes for individual and social betterment, about which we are
concerned, is seirously weakened.”
Carter continued to finesse, being vage about some things, expressing his personal opposition to abortion at times, and pleasing pro-lifers and infuriating pro-abortion feminists by signing the Hyde Amendment in 1977.
In 1980, Carter and his supporters worked against pro-gay rights and pro-abortion rights planks in the platform but were handily defeated, on the latter, by a margin of 2-1 voting in support of planks supporting unrestricted abortion and taxpayer-funded abortion, the vote achieved in great part by maneuverings and decisions made over the previous years to enact a quota requiring a 50-50 female-male split on delegates.
And then came Reagan.
Gee. I wonder why the pro-life activists starting doubting the Democratic party was open to their concerns?

Monday, October 27, 2008

So Crates

this could easily be Axelrod's advice to The One. The 1st part is totally Palin.

They will tell you that the just man who is thought unjust will be scourged, racked, bound --will have his eyes burnt out; and, at last, after suffering every kind of evil, he will be impaled: Then he will understand that he ought to seem only, and not to be, just.


Micheal Barber reminds me of something I really need reminding of often.

All Sacrifices Will Cease But One
Some of you may know this already, but there is an ancient Rabbinic tradition regarding sacrifice in the the Messianic Age. Although I've read it dozens of times, I'm still stunned every time I see it. According to Leviticus Rabbah 9:7 and Pesiqta Rabbati 12, several ancient Rabbis taught the following:
In the Age to Come all sacrifices will cease, but the thank offering will never cease;
all songs will cease, but the songs of thanksgiving will never cease." (Cited in
Hartmut Gese, Essays in Biblical Theology 133). In Hebrew, the word for "thank offering" is todah; in Greek, it is eucharistia. The thank offering was a special sacrifice that consisted of both a bloody offering (of a lamb or goat) and an unbloody offering (of bread or wafers) (see Leviticus 7). According to the prophet Jeremiah, the saved will celebrate with thank-offerings at the coming of the Messiah and the ingathering of the exiles (Jeremiah 33). The obvious question raised by this is: Did Jesus see the Last Supper as the eschatological sacrifice which would replace all the other sacrifices in the Age to Come?

The obvious answer?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Judgement Day is coming

Saint Isaac the Syrian (7th century), monk at Nineveh, near Mosul in present day Iraq
Ascetical discourses

"Light your lamps"

Prayer offered during the hours of night possesses great power, even more than that offered during the day. That is why all the saints were in the habit of praying at night, combating the body's drowsiness and the sweetness of sleep and overcoming their bodily nature. The prophet also said: «I am wearied with sighing; every night I flood my bed with weeping» (Ps 6,7) as he uttered heartfelt sighs in impassioned prayer. And elsewhere: «At midnight I rise to give you thanks because of your just ordinances, O just God» (Ps 119[118],62). For every request for which the saints desired to importune God they armed themselves with nocturnal prayer and at once received what they were asking for. Satan himself fears nothing as much as prayer offered during the night watches. Even if they are accompanied by distractions it does not return fruitless so long as something inappropriate is not being asked for. That is why Satan engages in severe combat against those who keep watch at night so as to deter them from this practice if he can, especially if they show themselves to be persevering. But those who are in any way defended against his pernicious wiles and have tasted the gifts God grants at these times of vigil and have had personal experience of the greatness of the help God gives them, wholly despise him, he and all his craftiness.