Saturday, December 30, 2006

First of all, I hope everyone reading this post has a happy and prosperous new year.

Having noted that, I admittedly did not comment on the passing of Gerald Ford but certainly I hope the Good Lord rests his soul. I am thinking in the new year of addressing some asssertions about the late president which were made by one of the Lew Rockwell contributors. Though I am to some extent hesitant to spend time debunking the nonsense that so frequently permeates that site, occasionally it seems appropriate to deal with some of the stuff as an example of why generally speaking they are not worth taking seriously. That therefore is under consideration for the new year after other projects are completed (of course).

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A Long-Overdue Weblog Update:

Well, I mentioned in late November that I was working on a weblog update bit by bit and it is now completed. Sorry for the wait folks but these things take time and I did not have much of it alas. But without further ado, here is what was added section by section (occasional comments interspersed):

Weblog Special Reports, Commemorations, Retrospectives, Miscellaneous Stuff, Etc.

A Tribute to Freddy King

For those who do not know of Freddy King, the thread can perhaps serve as an introduction to the late great "Texas Cannonball." (May he rest in peace.)

Miscellaneous Sports Predictions--An Audio Post

I posted this thread to show that despite being quite accurate with my prognostication overall, with sports subjects it is not there. I want to take this time to reverse my previous prediction and say that the Seahawks are going to lose in the first round of the playoffs...hopefully my streak of wrongness on sports picks can continue with that one ;-)

On Blogging in General, What is Blogged on Subject-Wise and Why, Etc.

Pretty straight forward. I cannot for the life of me figure out how anyone could have "nothing to write about" when it comes to blogging but then again, that is why as a rule{1} refusing to narrow my subjects of discussion is a wise approach to take.

2006 Holy Souls Memorial

"Excerpts From Classic Literature" Dept. (On the Cremation of Sam McGee)

Admittedly I am not sure how "classic" that poem is but it does take me back a long ways so that is good enough for me :)

On the Blues and Painting a Lyrical Picture of Reality (With Albert Cipriani)

I am reminded of Jesus' saying about the Centurion who had more faith than in all of Israel when I think of my friend Albert. As for the rest, it is more indirectly said in the post but presumably some of those I had in mind with the criticism are known to some of the readers of this humble weblog.

Reflecting on Chris' Passing One Year Later

God rest your soul Chris.

On the Christmas Season and Giving

The above thread was written to provide a Gospel lesson on giving that many who claim to be "lovers of the poor" do not get.

My Political/Social Musings

On Political/Social Subjects in General

On Another Example of Mainstream Media Lack of Basic Ethics and Other Tidbits

If all I wrote on were media double standards, there would be nothing else to write on. Nonetheless, on occasion a particular double standard interests me enough to write on and I will do it. The above one had to do with the 2006 National Intelligence Estimate dealing with the war in Iraq: a double standard I found of no small interest to put it mildly.

Revisiting and Reissuing the Challenge of Finding the So-Called "Neo-Con"

The challenge is still out there folks: I do not believe these so-called "neo-cons" actually exist!!! Why should I when those who refer to such fabled beings (and blame them for everything except bad breath) are unwilling to actually define their terms and tell me how a so-called "neo-con" is to be identified??? But I honestly do not expect those who prattle on using that term in a kind of cultic deadagenting fashion to explain themselves. The latter after all would require some intellectual fortitude and integrity which all too often the frequent users of that term (in a derogatory fashion) do not possess. Moving on...

On Flags of Our Fathers and the Late Indian Hero Ira Hayes

I really enjoyed the movie Flags of Our Fathers when I saw it at a pre-screening. It dealt well with many of the horrors of war in general and some of the excesses that were involved to keep the homefront focused on the importance of the task at hand. Basically, nothing new under the sun in other words. The post also has lyrics for a Johnny Cash tune about the late great Indian patriot Ira Hayes one of the featured characters in Flags. (May he rest in peace.)

On the US Constitution, the Fundamental Rights of Man, Etc.

Miscellaneous Musings on Rights (Real or Perceived), the Problems a Lot of Non-Theistic Evolutionist Proponents Have With Logical Consistency in Claiming Certain "Rights", Briefly on Bastiat's "Three Fundamental Rights" Theory, Etc.--An Audio Post

Basically, I winged the audio and covered a lot of stuff briefly in one recording.

On Capitalism, Economics, the Fundamental Rights of Man, Free Trade, Etc. (With Kevin Tierney)

One of my chats with Kevin Tierney which was blogged with his concurrence.{2}

On Political Election Topics

On the Election and the Attitudes of Self-Identified Conservatives

Self-explanatory. The above thread was blogged on the day of the election before the polls were closed.

Some Post-Election Humour

Courtesy of the greatest comedy series of all-time in my humble opinion.

A Synopsis of Our Overall Prescience Viz. the 2006 Elections

Yes my friends, we at Rerum Novarum were (as we quite often are) amazingly accurate overall in our prognostications as that dip into the blog archives and a few chat logs well testifies to.

On the Election, "Lost Causes", and Activism

Responding to an emailer after the election who took the results with no small degree of difficulty. For reasons noted in the posting, your host was not melancholy.

On the Incoming Senate Democratic Majority

Boy, it did not take long for one of our post-election observations to come to fruition to some extent.

On the Recent War and War in General

A Pearl Harbour Prayer for the Soldiers

Self-explanatory. I will be responding to a criticism of the prayer in one of the first postings of the upcoming new year.

Bridging Reason and Faith: My Philosophical/Ethical Musings

On Particular Philosophical/Ethical Subjects

Setting the Record Straight on Old Controversies

Much as I loathe historical airbrushing when it happens to the past and to others, I am particularly intolerant when it happens to me. The purpose of the above thread was to correct some attempted historical airbrushing from a party I shall not mention here.

Apologetics Provincialism In a Nutshell

Responding to a criticism of a post from August 5, 2006 dealing with problems of the apologetics methodology.{3} In a nutshell, the critic's modus operandi is that if someone who agrees with them acts unethically that it is okay but not those who disagree with them.

Miscellaneous Musings on Integrity

Continuing a line of thought from the previous posting on provincialism but in a more systematical fashion argumentationally.{4}

On David Armstrong's Tragic Mental Meltdown

The above post was originally supposed to be my bowing out of a drawn out dead-horse-beating but (unfortunately) was not to be.{5}

Miscellaneous Musings on the Importance of Vetting Sources--An Audio Post

The moral of the story: make sure your sources are reliable before you use them lest you be made to look foolish due to your own ignorance/negligence.

Points to Ponder on Apologetics Methodology (David Palm)

While I do not necessarily agree with those whom I quote in this blog feature, on this one David summarizes my view up quite succintly.

Miscellaneous Midnight Musings on Reason, Logic, Consistency, and the Importance of Scholastic and Ethical Integrity in Public Disputation--An Audio Post

Some audio musings on principles which are often sadly neglected today -even amongst those who oughta know better.

Miscellaneous Musings on Reason and Logic Revisited, Pope Benedict XVI, and Islam--An Audio Post

In a nutshell, me and the pope are simpatico on a significant subject matter that seems to be ignored by not a few who consider themselves "Catholic apologists."

On the Subject of "Refutation of a Theory or Thesis" Revisited

I find that the above post needed to be written to be as good a piece of evidence for what is wrong today as anything I can think of offhand. I mean, this is pretty basic stuff really but you would be surprised how many do not grasp what should be as obvious as the sun rising in the east at dawn. In a nutshell what is pointed out in the above thread is this: something is or is not proven false by objective evidences and cogent argumentation not by subjectivist criteria whatsoever it is and whomsoever says it. This is pretty simple stuff which anyone with a normal intact functioning brain can grasp without a problem. That there are many who cannot (or choose not to when it suits their agenda) is no small problem indeed but enough on that for now.

Points to Ponder on Faith and Reason (Pope Benedict XVI)

A healthy excerpt from the controversial Regensburg, Germany speech where His Holiness spoke on faith and reason far more eloquently than most people could.

An Open Note to the Participants on Dave Armstrong's Weblog on the Subjects of Apologetics and General Ethics


Miscellaneous Musings on Basic Ethics Both Public and Private--An Audio Post

Again, how sad is it to have to explain what should be obvious to anyone with even ordinary intelligence.

On Torture and General Norms of Theological Interpretation Contra Certain "Apologist" Fundamentalist Hermeneutics (Parts I-III)

There were four posts on the subject of torture since the last update. The problem was figuring out how to classify them so I decided to put the three part initial posting in the section on ethics and the other three in the section of theological musings. Not sure if that is the best way to categorize them but oh well.

Points to Ponder on Building One's Character (Mike Mentzer)

Highlighting a Key Problem With Common Apologetics Methodology (With Jimmy Akin)

Unfortunately, it seems Jimmy and his oligarch amigos are going to continue to pretend that the Emperor has clothes on. Hopefully that will change in the new year. I would like to leave that issue be but if things do not change, I will write more on this subject including (quite possibly) some stuff that apologist enemies of the Catholic apologetics oligarchy would love to get their hands on for an even further discrediting of the aforementioned oligarchy.

Points to Ponder on Combatting the Herd Mentality (Mike Mentzer)


Some Additional Outlining of the Public and Private Double Standards of the Apologetics Oligarchy

"See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil", and the Double Standard of the Apologetics Oligarchy and Their Fawning Sycophants

Imagine that folks, I actually expect people to act consistent and not allow in their friends what they condemn in those who are not their friends!!! It is called respect for reason and logic and again, this should be something everyone is concerned with. But the nature of positional pundits is to try and defend their view no matter how illogical and inconsistent it happens to be.

We at Rerum Novarum tend to irritate pundits, agenda provocateurs, and apologists of various stripes because of an inherent refusal on our part to accept uncritically any position whatsoever. And in doing this, there is consistency on our part because when the present writer takes the time to set down a position, he expect those who are genuinely interested in ideas to weigh the position set forth by objective criteria and nothing else.

Unlike the lions share of people from various outlooks who set forth opinions in the public square, the present writer does not expect anyone to accept any of his statements as some kind of arbitrary out of context injunction simply because he says it. This would base the veracity or lack thereof of his statements on a subjectivist context and would imply that truth does not objectively exist.

If you learn to think in principles you learn to think logically. Principles make thinking a lot easier and one of the goals of your host is to focus as much on principles themselves and in how those principles are to be fruitfully applied. For that reason, we will continue to press certain parties who do not seem concerned with principles and logic -either wholly or on arbitrary subject matters- to reconsider their positions.

On the Intensity/Duration Equation, Physics, and Trying to Understand Engineering Majors (With Tim Tull)

The moral of this story is either (i) I do not well understand the language and terminology of the advanced physics, (ii) engineering majors who move too quickly to into advanced physics-speak need to get lives of their own, or (iii) some combination of the two.{6}

Of or Pertaining to 'Progressivist' Philosophies (Falsely So-Called)

On Historical Revisionism Surrounding the New Deal, History Since the New Deal, the 1984 Election, Etc. (Parts I-III)

This is a post that frankly is of no small importance because in it I debunk a fair amount of the mythology surrounding The New Deal, history since The New Deal, The Great Society, and the Reagan presidential years. All that is left essentially is to deal with the myth that the middle class was "created out of The New Deal" which is frankly laughable. The middle class as we knew it in twentieth century America was not a result of The New Deal but instead was a result of industry and a specific historical context.{7} But I will deal with that subject in the new year if I remember to. Moving on...

My Theological Musings

On Certain Controverted "Hotpoint" Theological Subjects

On Justification and Catholic Understandings Thereof (With Tim Enloe)

On Justification Revisited (Dialogue With Tim Enloe)

On Torture and General Norms (With Dr. Scott Carson)

More on Torture and the Problems With Trying To Discount the Historical Record Explicitly or Otherwise

On Torture, the Limitations of Dignitatis Humanae, Logic, Etc. (Dialogue With Dr. Michael Liccione)

On "Implicit Faith"

Revisiting the Subjects of Atheism and Rational Thought in General (With Beth Cleaver)

Recommended Articles on Various Subjects

To make it easier to update this weblog in the future -and also to not have to concern myself with adding and removing articles written by others from the side margin with each update- I have decided to inaugurate a new weblog specifically for articles written by others. The two divisions are socio-political and religious-theological. I may also go back at some point and add to that weblog scroll articles deleted from past updates (but left in this weblog's archives) if they were removed due to space constraints.

Anyway, having noted that, I transferred to the new blog the scroll of threads as it previously read and added to it these threads from "miscellaneous threads" installments -most of which were subsequent to August 16, 2006:

U.N. 'Peacekeepers' Rape Women, Children [>>>]

Iraq on the Verge of Nukes in 2002??? [>>>]

WMD's? What WMDs? (Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]

Sr. Benedict's Boxing Club: Join Now and Take Advantage of Summer Discounts--Only $19.95 Per Session (Fumare) [>>>]

Boer Farm Murders (The Right Perspective) [>>>]

Stop the Murders (The Right Perspective) [>>>]

Sr. Benedict's Boxing Club: Join Now and Take Advantage of Summer Discounts--Only $19.95 Per Session (Fumare) [>>>]

Added to the blogroll this time around was the blog called The Outlaw Republican.

Anyway, that brings it current through the end of 2006. Hopefully in 2007 I can do updates every two months because in the past year it has been in four month increments on the average. That is way too much stuff to review and figure out what to add and what to leave in the archives not to mention the formatting involved. At least by the next update I will not have to worry about the articles part of the update --inaugurating a new blog for just that makes those updates independent of the main weblog. And with beta, all updates are immediate rather than waiting five or more minutes for the adjusted template to take as we have had to do for going on two years now.

But anyway, it is done now (all things to the contrary notwithstanding) and I am looking forward to the coming year in more ways than one. Hopefully y'all are too :)


{1} Of course it helps to be informed on a whole plethora of subjects also. Nonetheless, there are some subjects which I will discuss in private but do not feel I know enough about to handle in a public forum. Would that all people handled things this way but alas, that is not the case.

{2} I suppose technically I could blog it in accordance with this site's posting protocol but it was not an email correspondence so I decided to not assume in this case.

{3} The principles involved apply to apologetics in any sphere not just the religious one even if some of the particular applications noted are of a more limited basis.

{4} Yeah, that is probably not a real word but oh well.

{5} Basically, I allowed myself to be goaded into responding again about three weeks later.

{6} Just kidding Tim, it was cool to hear from you. (The email subject you chose to cover was refreshingly unexpected which is fine with me.)

{7} Indeed, to go into where the middle class as we knew it in twentieth century America actually came from would not make the proponents of The New Deal or various forms of socialist economics very happy for reasons which will be obvious should I actually discuss this subject in the new year as I would like to. (The handing over of at least the House to the Democrats --the Senate situation in question as per my notes from 12/07 --will provide a convenient historical circumstance with which to delve into this subject.)

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"None Dare Call It A Zionist Conspiracy" Dept.
(With no apologies to Gary Allen)

With that title, we have a third installment of a thread started here. Apparently this guy is not going to "go gently into that goodnight" (cf. D. Thomas) as I had hoped he would.

Mr. McElhinney,

I hope you and your family's Christmas was a good one. Having said that, I am growing tired of your neo-connish rhetoric and obtuseness. It would not surprise me one bit if I found that you are connected with the bomb-shell I am soon to reveal. For those "in the know", the name of this Zionist collaborator will come as a shock! This neo-con American apologist has tried to distance himself from Zionism but he can no longer hide from the truth. The evidence is almost completely compiled now and it is ironclad, I assure you. Yet, there is a part of me that still expects denial from the likes of you, living the in the fools paradise that you inhabit.

Soon, all of your snide comments will be exposed for the stupid arrogance that they represent. And whether or not you print the evidence I will supply you with shortly, be certain of this: the evidence of the depth of this apologist's duplicity will come forth and I will not be silenced. I plan to contact two or three Traditionalist publications shortly and I ***know*** they will be interested. Somehow, I think you will suddenly find yourself mute, Mr. McElhinney. And all of those inane little comments will be silenced.

Look for this to be revealed in the new year. And when it is, the Zionist influence in the Catholic Church, the Novus Ordo Church, will be bright to light for all to see. So be prepared to scatter, little cockroaches!

Henrik Hassen

I wonder if this fella got his writing style from Stephen Hand ;-) Oh well, send me your stuff "Henrik" and we shall see.

To be Continued...


Thursday, December 28, 2006

As it is now, I am on pace to have the weblog update completed before the end of the year -possibly as early as tomorrow afternoon. Once that is completed, I will resume work on the other projects I noted in this post were to be completed soon.


Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Points to Ponder:

History has a way of catching up to public liars. [T. Fleming]