Saturday, April 19th, 2014 | Uncategorized | No Comments

I’ll tell you what’s sad.  What’s truly sad is that there are alleged Christians who believe that certain parts of the Bible are nothing more than ancient Middle Eastern poetry.


Saturday, April 19th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 22 Comments

Mathematicians refer to this object as a Pelosi bottle.  It graphically illustrates the outstanding, off-the-charts, pedal-to-the-metal, positively otherworldly ability of the former Speaker of the US House of Representatives to talk out of her own ass:

To “honor the dignity and work of immigrants,” Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi helps Bishop Marc Andrus wash the feet of two children Thursday at Saint John the Evangelist Episcopal Church in San Francisco.

Pelosi also used the occasion to talk about passing HR15 – bipartisan immigration legislation that her office says would “reduce the deficit by nearly $1 trillion, secure our borders, unite our families, protect our workers and provide an earned pathway to citizenship.”

Nanner McBotox went on to say that passage of HR15 will also:

(1) Reduce the greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere by 50-75% in two years.
(2) Guarantee that Social Security and Medicare will not merely become solvent but will run annual multi-trillion dollar surpluses until at least the year 4379.
(3) Reduce the cost of new iPads to $6.75.
(4) Turn the entire United States of America into a free wireless hotspot.
(5) Give mankind the ability to domesticate any animal he wants (although the advantage of this escapes me if Webster Groves demands that people clean up after their pets and I’m out walking my pet grizzly bear Auberon some evening).
(6) Discover a method for turning human urine into automobile and heating fuel, thus providing the poor, those on fixed incomes or the middle class with entrepeneurial opportunities out the wazoo.
(7) Get a movie or two or three made based on the cool American TV series Leverage.
(8) Invent wind-up automobiles!
(9) Move Rutherford B. Hayes up the US presidential assessment list from “crappy” to “surprisingly underrated.”
(10) Find me a date.

Among other things.


Friday, April 18th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 33 Comments

The good people at Think Maoism Progress direct your attention to a “scientific” study which claims to have detected high levels of bigotry and intolerance in a substance not previously thought to have contained them.  Here’s a hint: you inhaled quite a bit of that substance yesterday and will continue to inhale that substance for as long as you live:

A study produced by the University of Minnesota concluded that race is a determining factor in who is most affected by air pollution. Specifically, non-white people breathe air that is substantially more polluted than the air that white people breathe.

According to Julian Marshall, who led the University’s research, race outweighed income in regards to who is most affected by poor air quality. When low-income white people were compared to high-income Hispanic people, the latter group experienced higher levels of nitrogen dioxide. Altogether, people of color in the U.S. breath air with 38 percent more nitrogen dioxide in it than their white counterparts, particularly due to power plants and exhaust from vehicles.

“We were quite surprised to find such a large disparity between whites and nonwhites related to air pollution,” Marshall told the Minnesota Post. “Especially the fact that this difference is throughout the U.S., even in cities and states in the Midwest.”

Other evidence has also pointed to disproportionately high levels of air pollution in low-income and non-white communities. A 2012 study conducted by Yale University researchers revealed that “potentially dangerous compounds such as vanadium, nitrates and zinc” exist in locations with high concentrations of people of color, including African-Americans, Hispanics, and Asians. Unfortunately, people of color contribute the least amount of air pollutants, despite being the most heavily impacted by them.

Racist air.  The United States of America has racist air.  A concept so titanically and bonecrushingly stupid that only True Leftist Believers like Think Lenin Was A Great Man? Boy Howdy, So Do We!! Progress could take it seriously.

It would be easy but awfully time-consuming to point out all the logical flaws in this concept.  Like the fact that bad air automatically migrates to where minorities live and never leaves.  Or the fact whites have somehow stolen all the good air, leaving crappy second-class air for non-whites to breath.  Or the suggestion that a homeless white crack addict still breathes better air than a black or Hispanic neurosurgeon.

You can see why we’re having a tough time buying all this unadulterated crap, Think North Korea For Your Next Vacation Getaway Progress.  But that may not matter.  Jeff Goldstein points out the definite public-policy implications.

I noted here some time back that the feds under Obama, specifically via HUD, were tracking neighborhood “diversity” with an eye toward “fixing” the “problem” of segregated neighborhoods through some future social engineering policies that would most likely look to create neighborhood quotas based on race. And now it’s clear how they plan to do this:  by appealing to  “public safety” (air quality among minorities is worse than air quality in places where air-stealing whites are coughing out their poisonous CO2) and a more pristine “environment.”  Call it “air-quality inequality,” have Nancy Pelosi (and Colin Powell) declare it almost certainly racist, and run with it!

Forget the fact that social engineering created the kind of low-income, racially-divided housing projects that have been a blight on so many “liberal” cities.  Because that was then, and shut up, racists!  Now, the progressives are again the “civil rights” champions who will fix what they started out in good conscience to do — create a safe, affordable space for people of color — that it turns out has been a failure precisely because of the racism they now find embedded in global warming. Which they are alone willing to fight.

If this idiocy gains traction, expect leftist “churches” like the Episcopal Organization, which passed this at GenCon 2006, to weigh in sooner rather than later.  Were I a betting man, I’d wager that a resolution dealing with this very subject is being written as you read this, will make it to the floor of next year’s GenCon and will pass overwhelmingly.

Because this country has just got to do something about its racist air.


Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 31 Comments

He was smiling when he said it so one fervently hopes that former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg was joking.  But for some reason, I suspect that he wasn’t:

Mr. Bloomberg was introspective as he spoke, and seemed both restless and wistful. When he sat down for the interview, it was a few days before his 50th college reunion. His mortality has started dawning on him, at 72. And he admitted he was a bit taken aback by how many of his former classmates had been appearing in the “in memoriam” pages of his school newsletter.

But if he senses that he may not have as much time left as he would like, he has little doubt about what would await him at a Judgment Day. Pointing to his work on gun safety, obesity and smoking cessation, he said with a grin: “I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

“Hello?  Hello?!!

“May I help you?”

Why is this gate locked?!!

“Well, we generally keep it locked because we can’t have just anybody wandering in.”


“Don’t you know who you used to be?”

“I am…was New York City Mayor MICHAEL BLOOMBERG?!!

“Oh yeah, I heard you just bought the farm.  Nice to meet you, Mike.”

Mayor Bloomberg!!

“Mayor Bloomberg.”

“And you are…were?

“Esther P. Winkenmueller, Goodland, Kansas.  Uh…formerly.”

“Are you a saint?  I’ve never heard of you.”

“Nah, I was just a church secretary at Pool of Siloam Baptist Church in Goodland.  We Baptists never went in for that saint stuff.”

“Listen, I’m…”

“As far as I’m concerned, the only people who should be ever to be considered saints are people who, if you ask them while they’re still alive if they should be considered saints after they die, scream in terror at the suggestion and start throwing things at you to make you go away.”

“Doesn’t St. Peter usually do this job?”

“We don’t use the term ‘saint’ here.  Seems kind of pointless.  But yeah, Peter takes a turn at the gate now and then.  We all do.  Even Mary, sometimes.  I’ve got no idea how that “St. Peter meets you at the gates of heaven” thing got started.”

“That’s great but…”

“Fact is, Peter was supposed to be here right now but he and Paul got a chance for a round of golf with Ben Hogan and Sam Snead.  And what sane person turns that opportunity down, am I right?  So I told him I’d delighted to fill in.”

“All right, listen!!  I’m supposed to be in there so I would greatly appreciate it, you repulsive little non-entity, if you’d unlock the gate RIGHT NOW!!

“Love to, Mike…”


“Mayor Bloomberg, but you’re not on the list.”

“I’m not on the…what do you mean, I’m not on the list?!!

“You’re not on the list.  The management here is pretty strict about that.  If they’re not on the list, they don’t get in.  No exceptions.”

I’m going to need to talk to your supervisor!!

“Let’s see.  Okay, okay, okay, blah, blah, blah, hey, here it is.  Well, what do you know?  Seems that my Supervisor did leave a message for you.”

Out with it!!

“It says, ‘I never knew you.  Depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’”


Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 50 Comments

At Salon (natch), Adam Hamilton Episcopalians all over everything:

I want to say a word about Jesus. Some are quick to point out that while Jesus never addresses homosexual relationships, he does describe heterosexual marriage as God’s will. That is true, but the context of these passages is never in reference to loving same-sex relationships. The context of his reference to heterosexual relationships is, if I remember correctly, always about divorce. I don’t think we can take Jesus’s silence on this issue as approval of same-gender relationships. But it is important, given that Jesus is God’s definitive Word by which all other words about God are judged, that he does not speak to this issue at all.

I have suggested above that the handful of passages in the Bible that seem to speak directly to a prohibition against same-sex marriage and companionship could be prohibitions against something entirely different from what we mean today when we talk about two people sharing their lives as loving companions. But even if they are directly condemning same-sex relationships, we’ve seen already that not everything explicitly taught in scripture captures God’s timeless will. Some scriptures seem clearly shaped by the cultural norms and the theological and social presuppositions of their authors. They do not seem to reflect the heart of God revealed in Jesus Christ. We have seen that the New Testament church took the bold step of acknowledging that much in the Old Testament did not reflect God’s continuing will for his people, setting aside circumcision, kosher laws, and much more.

Dear LORD.  We know that You can create entire universes while we can’t create anything anywhere near as impressive as that.  And we claim to believe Your Holy Spirit inspired the writers of Holy Scriptures.  But some of the Scriptures that Your Holy Spirit inspired, “seem clearly shaped by the cultural norms and the theological and social presuppositions of their authors,” and do not reflect Your continuing will for your people.


Adam?  Big man?  If the Lord Jesus Christ spoke of male-female marriage as God’s will, as you quite correctly assert that He did, then why in name of Frank freaking Griswold should “the context of…loving, same-sex relationships,” assuming that such things existed in that time, which they didn’t, matter in the slightest?

Do you really want to trot out that “Jesus never directly addressed homosexual activity” cliche again, Adam?  After all, Jesus never directly addressed lots of issues.  Racism, sexism, polluting the environment, “homophobia,” genocide, overdue library books, etc.

If that’s the standard now, A, I hope you have some great “theological reasons” lined up as to why that man, that woman, that additional woman and that Ford F-150 pick-up over there can’t “marry” inside of a Christian church.  Because you can be damned sure that they’ll use your “theological reasons” for homosexual marriage against you.


Monday, April 14th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 27 Comments

Seriously, South Fayette, Pennsylvania School District?


The mother of a South Fayette High School student convicted of disorderly conduct for recording classmates bullying him wants a judge to reverse the decision and the district to apologize.

Shea Love, 40, of South Fayette questioned why school officials contacted police to discuss a possible violation of wiretap laws but refused to confront the students whose voices she says were captured on an iPad tormenting her son.

Love requested the identity of her son, 15, a sophomore diagnosed with a comprehension delay disorder, ADHD, and an anxiety disorder, be kept private out of fear of retribution.

“The whole thing has been a horrible nightmare,” Love told the Tribune-Review on Sunday. “This whole ordeal has made my son miserable.”

Asked to discuss the case, school board President Len Fornella said: “I can’t comment on that.”

Other school board members, Superintendent Bille P. Rondinelli, high school principal Scott Milburn and assistant principal Aaron Skrbin did not return calls or could not be reached during the weekend. South Fayette police could not be reached.

According to a transcript of a March 19 hearing before South Fayette District Judge Maureen McGraw-Desmet, the boy said he made the seven-minute recording “because I always felt like it wasn’t me being heard.”

He said classmates harassed him for several months, and even though he told his mom, he didn’t have anything to show for it.

“I wanted some help,” he said. “This wasn’t just a one-time thing. This always happens every day in that class.”

Milburn called South Fayette police Lt. Robert Kurta on Feb. 12 requesting he come take a report because he believed he “had a wiretapping incident.” State law generally prohibits secret audio recording.

After questioning the boy, district officials forced him to erase the recording and punished him with a Saturday detention, which he served, according to the hearing transcript. Kurta, who testified that he did not hear the recording, charged him with disorderly conduct, a summary offense.

Kurta did not return calls. He told the judge that he didn’t think the case warranted a felony wiretapping charge but made the decision to pursue a summary charge “because I believe that he committed a crime.”

McGraw-Desmet found Love’s son guilty. She fined him a minimum of $25 and ordered him to pay court costs. McGraw-Desmet could not be reached.

Love said her son is appealing the judge’s decision.

The family intends to file a civil lawsuit against the school district.  If this had been my son, the only damages I would ask would be the deed to the property of South Fayette High School and enough money to hire a wrecking crew to tear the entire building down while I watched.  Then I’d drive to a local fast food establishment and order lunch just so I could listen to South Fayette HS’s former principal ask me if I wanted “fries with that.”

But I’d pay for my lunch with my own money.  I’m not greedy.


Monday, April 14th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 9 Comments

Furniture companies have dozens of nail guns
in their wood shops as a result of how great they succeed.
That way they will have more chances of landing a job and of
moving forward to higher career goals. Reaching the
perfect horizontal or vertical line is not that easy
with the traditional accessories such as bubble leveler.

From today’s comment spam.


Monday, April 14th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 23 Comments

Kyle Smith put together a list of what he considers to be the five most overrated sports movies.  I can’t argue with three of his selections although I (slightly) dispute the inclusion of Rocky IV.

That’s because just about everybody knows going in that most movie sequels are complete wastes of time.  Of all the movies I’ve seen in the Sequel Era, the only sequel I ever saw that was better than the original was Superman II.  The rest were either blindingly obvious, disappointing, painfully embarrassing or all three. 

Ghostbusters II, anyone? 

So when you get to the third sequel of your movie series, you’ve been a cartoon for a long time so you might as well have a little fun with the franchise.  Stallone was a genius at coming up with great villains and he invented an outstanding one here.

Admit it.  When Ivan Drago finally went down and didn’t get back up, you screamed with joy at the top of your lungs and shouted, “U. S. A.!!  U. S. A!!” as loudly as you could.

Silently and inwardly, of course.

But with his choice for the most overrated sports movie of all time, Smith goes completely off the rails:

Sorry, sports fans, but God doesn’t waste His time organizing fantasy old-timer baseball games, and sentimental rubbish like [Field of Dreams] trivializes belief in the Almighty. This is a brain-dead ghost story that could have been written by the staff of a Hallmark commercial.

Kyle?  Buddy?  Hate to burst your bubble here, champ, but Field of Dreams was never a sports movie and was never intended to be.

Ladies?  Here’s a little Inside Male for you.  If youve never seen Field of Dreams before, you’re watching it at home with your Significant Male Other some evening and he starts crying at the very end, you can infer two things about your guy. 

Your old man didn’t have as great a relationship with his father as he wanted to have.  And he’d enthusiastically give up everything he owned if he could somehow change that. 

Or just have one more game of catch.


Sunday, April 13th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 22 Comments

Tolerance has had a bad stretch lately.  The new CEO of Mozilla, the makers of the Firefox Web browser, which I do not currently and will never again use, was forced out after less than two weeks when it was discovered that he had contributed to the campaign for the passage of California’s Proposition 8, which attempted to legally codify the definition of marriage in that state as between a man and a woman.

World Vision, a Christian charitable institution, recently changed its policy and declared that its branches were now free to hire the same-sex married if they so desired, only to reverse itself a day or so later after a firestorm of criticism from Christian traditionalists.

WV’s second reversal caused the left to accuse conservative Christians in general and World Vision in particular of WANTING TO KILL EVERY SINGLE CHILD IN THE ENTIRE WORLD while simultaneously affording brain-dead, leftist drama queens like Rachel Held Evans the chance to publicly sob into their fainting couches.

And recently, Brandeis University, which used to be a pretty liberal college, caved in to pressure from Big Islam and withdrew its award of an honorary degree to Ayaan Hirsi Ali,* a woman described by Big Islam as an “Islamophobe” and someone who has been a fierce critic of both Islamic religion and Islamic culture.  With outstandingly good reason.

What’s going on here?  Are we seeing the rise of some sort of new radically-activist American Bolshevism?  Not at all, says Tom Krattenmaker.  It’s just that some of you people have absolutely no understanding of what tolerance really means:

Following revelations that recently appointed Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich had supported California’s anti-gay-marriage Proposition 8, he is out. And so is tolerance in this country — at least according to critics of the pressure campaign that led to Eich’s involuntary resignation, and other campaigns like it.

For those involved in the religion, culture and politics debates, the Mozilla episode has sparked new rounds of recriminations. With it has come the now-customary rhetorical question from conservatives: How do gay-rights liberals get away with calling themselves the “tolerance” people when they show such nasty intolerance toward anyone who disagrees with them?

How? Because they believe in tolerance — a good thing — and it only makes sense that they not tolerate actions and words that exclude gays or represent other forms of intolerance.

So if you’re intolerant of what you, and you alone, consider to be intolerance, you’re tolerant.  Right.  Almost immediately realizing how bonecrushingly stupid that assertion is, Krattenmaker then proceeds to walk it back.  A bit.

There is much to argue with here, but Tooley’s and Dreher’s perspectives are right in one respect. Sometimes liberals — and conservatives too, as Dreher admitted — take their principles to extremes and turn them into rigid ideologies and purity tests.

This can be downright counterproductive. At no time was that more apparent than when Toms shoes, which donates millions of free pairs to poor children, faced a boycott drive for having the temerity to consider a distribution partnership with Focus on the Family. Toms had broken the cardinal rule that states that thou shalt never cooperate with an evangelical group that actively opposes gay marriage. Never mind shoes for the needy kids.

See if the following sounds familiar.

From the viewpoint of this principled tolerance, it is utterly ridiculous to expect a shrug and “whatever” in the face of disrespect and bigotry against racial or sexual minorities. This tolerance can tolerate a lot — pretty much everything, in fact, except intolerance. But here’s my call to tolerance champions: Except in the direst situations, please confine the condemnations to actions, ideas and words, and resist the temptation to write off entire individuals, organizations and religious movements. Sometimes a little patience is in order too. Those with strong religious beliefs about marriage are not all going to change overnight.

If you’re scoring at home, the fundie term for that is “hate the sin but love the sinner.”  Krattenmaker’s not at all happy about having to borrow that concept in its entirety.

There’s a saying associated with evangelicals and homosexuality that goes, “Love the sinner, hate the sin.” It’s highly debatable whether the coiners of that phrase live up to the “love” part, but there’s something in that notion that the tolerance brigade might well appropriate and apply the next time word seeps out about a CEO or anyone else in the spotlight who opposed, or still opposes, gay marriage:

Intolerance for the offending act, and tolerance for the person.

But Tom knows that it’s the only way that he can make his ridiculous “argument” work.

*This, by the way, is what Ms. Ali would have told Brandeis students.

UPDATE: As bad as things are here, they’re way worse in other places.  Fuinseoig?  You’re up.


Saturday, April 12th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 15 Comments

Some of the comments on various Anglican blogs about the recent Justin Welby controversy suggest two odd conclusions, at least to me.  Amazingly, the Anglican Communion doesn’t exist and never has.  And if there is a split in what I used to think was the Anglican world, the Anglican left may end up being the people who walk away from Canterbury.  At ENS, Jeremy Bates goes all 1776 on Welby’s narthex:

And would someone please remind the Archbishop that the Anglican Communion is NOT, as he puts it, a “global church”? He has no authority here. He has no authority in Africa. The sooner he acknowledges these facts, the better.

Indeed, because the Anglican Communion is not a global church, Episcopalians do not “need to learn to live as a global church” under Canterbury’s direction.

The idea that the Anglican Communion is a “global church” is complete nonsense.

It also smacks of self-serving English imperialism.

Some wiseass blogger responds.

So Gene Robinson was never an Anglican bishop then? Good to know.

Since Cecil Rhodes is apparently still alive, Bates ducks the question.

The whole point of being Anglican is that foreign prelates do not have jurisdiction in other provinces.

That was the principle on which Henry VIII founded the Church of England as a church independent from Rome. That is the principle on which The Episcopal Church ordained Gene Robinson and Mary Glasspool.

The attempt by two successive Archbishops of Canterbury to mis-portray a family of independent churches as one “global church” — headquartered in, where else, London — is nothing more than a transparent power grab by Englishmen pining for erstwhile imperial influence.

Lambeth should cease forthwith these foolish attempts at theo-political imperialism. Nothing could be less Anglican.

Wiseass blogger FTW!!

Really want to go there? Then explain to me why Gene Robinson and his supporters were so angry when Rowan Williams barred him from the last Lambeth Conference. According to you, “theo-political imperialism” is a really bad thing so the Episcopal Church shouldn’t have been allowed to impose Robinson on the rest of the Anglican world. Nothing could be less Anglican.

Yet TEC insisted upon it then and still does today. But you and I both know that you can’t have it both ways. You’re either part of an international Christian tradition or you’re not. If you claim that you are, then you have certain obligations to others who share that tradition but who may have committed the unpardonable sin of disagreeing with you. If you no longer wish to be “Anglican,” then the sky’s the limit.


Saturday, April 12th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 12 Comments

You are FAR too emotionally invested in a scientific theory when you find yourself hoping that tens of thousands of innocent people die just so you can publicly and smugly declare with as much “sorrow” as you can fake, “If only people had listened to me.”

Part of being a science communicator is hoping a natural disaster kills as many members of the audience as possible, as soon as possible, with as much media exposure as possible. As a communicator myself, I’d like nothing better than for thousands of middle-class white people to die in an extreme weather event—preferably one with global warming’s fingerprints on it—live on cable news. Tomorrow.

The hardest thing about communicating the deadliness of the climate problem is that it isn’t killing anyone. And just between us, let’s be honest: the average member of the public is a bit (how can I put it politely?) of a moron. It’s all well and good for the science to tell us global warming is a bigger threat than Fascism was, but Joe Q. Flyover doesn’t understand science. He wants evidence.

So we’ve probably reached the limits of what science communication can achieve. At this point only nature herself can close the consensus gap—or the fear gap.

UPDATE:  D’OH!!  A commenter informs me that this is a parody site.  Click on the “About” button.


Saturday, April 12th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 36 Comments

I graduated from high school in 1974.  And the other day, I got to thinking about the bands that I really liked back then and realized that there weren’t all that many of them since, well, most of the bands I used to love when I was a kid were actually garbage.  Here are my five favorites from that era:

(5) KISS – These guys went national when I was in freaking HIGH SCHOOL and I’m 58 years old.  So if you’re between 30 to 40 years old and you think that KISS “kicks ass,” as the kids say, then, for the love of God, get help and get help now.

(4) The Electric Light Orchestra – A friend of mine and I saw these guys live when they came to town on their “Out of the Blue” tour in the late 70′s.  InCREDible show.

(3) The Rolling Stones – The last truly great recording these guys did was 1972′s “Exile on Main Street.”  I absolutely wore that baby out back then and I still listen to it on CD all the time.  But I basically hated all the Stones recordings that followed it and I’ve only sporadically enjoyed Stones’ songs ever since.

(2) Pink Floyd – Before Roger Waters turned into an über-leftist, anti-Semitic crank, the musical Bobby Fischer, Pink Floyd albums were, unique among pop music recordings then or now since they were inner-directed rather than outer-directed.  That resonated with a titanically-lonely personality like me.  And since they didn’t record them very often, Pink Floyd albums were events, something to eagerly anticipate, often for a very long time.

(1) The Sex Pistols – I loved their whole ”Get your asses up on stage, say whatever crap you think that you have to say, get the hell off the stage and shut the hell up!!” ethos.  And they did come up with the single most ferociously anti-abortion song ever written by anybody (the lyrics are here but make sure that none of your kids are anywhere nearby when you click on that link).

All of which means that this will either be a disaster or really, really KEWL!!  A St. Louis tour date is scheduled for July 1 so don’t count on getting a hold of me that day.


Friday, April 11th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Never forget that you have WAY more friends in the United States than you have enemies.  So if you ever have to undertake an action in self-defense that might appear controversial to the rest of the world, please don’t hesitate because we’ll back you.

Jews should have learned a long time ago that the rest of the world wants them dead and that the surest road to national suicide is to depend on the good auspices of somebody else.  Which is not to say that you don’t have enemies here because you do.  Powerful enemies.  One of which is the current United States Government:

The Obama administration has been waging a secret media war in capitals across two continents blaming Israel for the recent collapse of peace talks with the Palestinians, according to former Israeli diplomats and Washington, D.C. insiders familiar with the peace process.

Multiple sources told the Washington Free Beacon that top Obama administration officials have worked for the past several days to manufacture a crisis over the reissuing of housing permits in a Jerusalem neighborhood widely acknowledged as Israeli territory.

Senior State Department officials based in Israel have sought to lay the groundwork for Israel to take the blame for talks collapsing by peddling a narrative to the Israeli press claiming that the Palestinians were outraged over Israeli settlements, the Free Beacon has learned.

These administration officials have planted several stories in Israeli and U.S. newspapers blaming Israel for the collapse of peace talks and have additionally provided reporters with anonymous quotes slamming the Israeli government.

The primary source of these multiple reports has been identified as Middle East envoy Martin Indyk and his staff, according to these insiders, who said that the secret media campaign against Israel paved the way for Secretary of State John Kerry to go before Congress on Tuesday and publicly blame Israel for tanking the talks.

“The Palestinians didn’t even know they were supposed to be abandoning negotiations because of these housing permits, which are actually old, reissued permits for areas everyone assumes will end up on the Israelis’ side of the border anyway,” said one senior official at a U.S. based pro-Israel organization who asked to remain anonymous because the Obama administration has in the past retaliated against critics from inside the pro-Israel world.

“Then Martin Indyk started telling anyone who would listen that in fact the Palestinians were angry over the housing issue,” the source said. “Eventually, the Palestinians figured out it was in their interest to echo what the Americans were saying.”

Lurch basically admitted that the Obama Administration has chosen sides.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday that both Israelis and Palestinians were responsible for the current crisis in peace talks, but appeared to allocate the lion’s share of the blame to Jerusalem.

“Both sides wound out in a position of unhelpful moves,” Kerry said at a hearing of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, delineating what he said led to the current impasse.

“The prisoners were not released by Israel on the day they were supposed to be released and then another day passed and another day, and then 700 units were approved in Jerusalem and then poof — that was sort of the moment,” Kerry said.

The secretary of state was referring to the planned fourth release of Palestinian security prisoners, which was originally slated for March 29. Israel did not proceed with the release on time, with Jerusalem saying that it was delayed because the Palestinian Authority had demanded that Israeli Arabs be among those freed and was unwilling to commit to extend peace talks beyond their April 29 deadline. 

Good luck, Israel.  You’re going to need it.


Wednesday, April 9th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 18 Comments

Let’s get one thing out of the way at the start.  This post and the past several Anglican posts preceding it should most definitely not be interpreted as anything close to a changing of the Editorial mind about the Anglican Communion or the “official” Anglican tradition in general.  Since both are dead, both should lie down as quickly as possible.

That said, if past performance is indicative of future results, Justin Welby should have emphatically walked back his controversial remarks of the other day by now and Anglican Journal just gave him a chance to.  But my gracious lord of Canterbury wouldn’t take it:

What I was saying is that when we take actions in one part of the church, particularly actions that are controversial, that they are heard and felt not only in that part of the church but around the world…And, this is not mere consequentialism; I’m not saying that because there will be consequences to taking action, that we shouldn’t take action. What I’m saying is that love for our neighbour, love for one another, compels us to consider carefully how that love is expressed, both in our own context and globally. We never speak the essential point that, as a church, we never speak only in our local situation. Our voice carries around the world. Now that will be more true in some places than in others. It depends on your links. We need to learn to live as a global church in a local context and never to imagine that we’re just a local church. There is no such thing.

You know what that means and I know what that means.  But over at Naughton’s, they don’t have the slightest conception of what that means.  Tobias Haller:

Justin, we understood you the first time, and your concern is noted. It is also misplaced and wrong, and it is exactly consequentialism, phrase your call for “consideration” how you will. The essence of a charge of being “inconsiderate” is based on unintended consequences. I think your comments in the interview comparing same-sex marriage to adultery are far more inconsiderate, inflammatory, and damaging, and will likely continue to fan the flames of homophobia.

Perhaps you are the one who needs a lesson in “consideration.”

I left the following comment over there but I seriously doubt that it gets in.

So you’re suggesting that it was actually wrong for the Anglican left to demand that Gene Robinson be unquestioningly accepted as an Anglican bishop? And that the Anglican left is equally wrong for condemning Nigerian and Ugandan Anglican episcopal support of laws passed in those two sovereign nations?

Because “local context” goes both ways. Just sayin’.

UPDATE:  No surprise whatsoever but Your Editor is wrong yet again.

UPDATE:  They’ll never do it, of course, since, if they actually did, they would stop being “apostolic” and start an existence as one more liberal Protestant sect along the lines of the United Church of the Zeitgeist but some of the comments following mine suggest that many Episcopalians would be quite happy to cut the Anglican Communion loose.


Wednesday, April 9th, 2014 | Uncategorized | 70 Comments

I can’t remember the last Democrat for which I voted for any office, high or low.  They’re hard leftists with their hands in my pockets, emptying my wallet, corrupt liars or both.  But if my only two choices in a general election are [INSERT DEMOCRAT NAME HERE] and Louisiana Republican Vance McAllister, I’m definitely voting for the Democrat: 

Fifth District Congressman Vance McAllister, who campaigned for office last fall as a devout Christian and devoted father and husband, admitted Monday he had engaged in an extramarital affair and asked for “forgiveness” after The Ouachita Citizen and its sister newspapers exposed his transgressions.

McAllister issued the statement to take responsibility for his actions after The Ouachita Citizen, The Franklin Sun and the Concordia Sentinel published video surveillance of McAllister passionately embracing and kissing one of his congressional aides. The aide, Melissa Peacock, was his district scheduler.

Peacock resigned from McAllister’s congressional staff Monday, according to McAllister’s chief of staff, Adam Terry.

McAllister did a full Jimmy Swaggart.

“There’s no doubt I’ve fallen short and I’m asking for forgiveness,” McAllister’s statement said. “I’m asking for forgiveness from God, my wife, my kids, my staff, and my constituents who elected me to serve. Trust is something I know has to be earned whether you’re a husband, a father, or a congressman. I promise to do everything I can to earn back the trust of everyone I’ve disappointed.”

Two things, Vance.  You’ve already got forgiveness from God just on the basis of your asking for it; He’s funny that way.  And I certainly hope that your constituents, your staff, your kids and hopefully even your wife will find it in their hearts to forgive you as well.  Since Ms. Peacock has not only lost her job but will probably lose her husband, I’m not sure about your prospects there but give it your best shot.

Because all of us have sinned and come short of the Glory of God.

Here’s the deal, Vance.  I wouldn’t count on getting back trust any time soon.  People can forgive quite a bit.  “Tax problems” aren’t as important as they once were since many regular people have “tax problems” themselves.  Since I don’t want either of these things, I don’t really give a crap if some lobbyist hooks you up with a boat or a beach house.

But as someone who wanted to be married for most of his life but could never make it happen, knowing that someone stood up and made a vow before the Creator of the universe and then pissed all over that vow is kind of a deal-breaker for me, Vance.  I hope you’ve got something lined up because your congressional career is finished.

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