Archive for the 'Quick Hitters' Category

QH’s – worn down, hungry and not paying taxes

Thursday, April 8th, 2010

Today’s quick hitters:

  • Man I’m tired today. I was up until 1 AM last night working on a computer project that I decided today was a bad idea. Nothing like wasting time when the oil lamp is burning.
  • I saw this joke on the Disputations blog. If this verse, ‘While they were still incredulous for joy and were amazed, he asked them, “Have you anything here to eat?”‘ (Luke 24:41), proves Jesus “was a Dominican”, it most definitely proves I am too.
  • There’s been a lot of discussion around the country about the percentage of people who pay federal income taxes (how low it is). I’ll admit it, I paid ZERO dollars in federal income tax. I’m the perfect storm of government incentives: big mortgage, 3 kids, stay at home wife, donate to Church, and pay plenty of property and state tax. So even though I make a reasonable sum as an engineer, between all of the deductions and even more importantly the credits, I was actually paid (a very small amount) by the federal government to live here. Make of it what you will.

QH’s – Coal mining, Cardinal Mahoney and TGD

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

Today’s quick hitters:

  • It’s always terrible to hear about tragedies like the coal miners in West Virginia. What frustrates me is when I see people use incidents like this to make political points. Why we need nuclear (of which I’m a big fan) or solar (like it too) or hydro (thumbs up) or wind (I’m a sailor for crying out loud, we love wind!). But is this really the time for that? A year from now when debating the issue, bringing up statistics of how many people die mining coal, that’s a reasonable thing to do. But right now, it’s just a time to mourn those who have died and help save those trapped and comfort those who have lost loved ones.
  • For those not involved in “inside” Catholic politics, they wouldn’t make much of this, but it’s a big deal: Pope Names San Antonio Archbishop José Gomez Coadjutor Archbishop Of Los Angeles. This means that existing archbishop/Cardinal Mahoney, who’s both a liberal in the Church and has not had the best handling of the sexual abuse crisis (he’s a stone-wall’er) will be replaced when he reached his “mandatory” retirement age of 75. The reality is that a guy of Mahoney’s stature is generally allowed to keep going long after the retirement age or at a minimum the Pope doesn’t start looking for a replacement until after the guy’s 75th birthday. In this case, he’s named the successor a full 9 months in advance. That’s not insignificant. Here’s a fairly balanced commentary on it. Also interesting to see the local paper with an article on it.
  • I finally got my copy of The God Delusion (TGD) from the public library (as to put as little money in the pockets of Dawkins as possible. Expect to see the reviewing start shortly.

QH’s – Holy Thursday, April Fools and a sad death

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

Today’s quick hitters:

  • A blessed Holy Thursday to everyone. Of course today is most remembered for the Last Supper and for Catholics we think of the Institution of the Eucharist. We often forget the other big thing He did at the Last Supper which is wash the disciples feet, a reminder that no matter how important and prestigious our position in life is that we must use that position to serve others with great humility, being willing to get down on our hands and knees and do the dirty work.
  • Along those lines there will be no blogging tomorrow (and I usually don’t blog on weekends) in reverence for the sacrifice that Christ make for us on Good Friday. So I’ll wish you a blessed Good Friday a day in advance instead.
  • Bravo to Google and their April Fools joke today. Well played!
  • I saw a quote today “Humanae Vitae would have us believe that there is an important moral distinction between a married couple temporarily delaying conception through NFP and the same couple doing the same thing with some barrier method.” which brought to mind a thought I’ve had for quite a while: People who bash NFP like to say ‘there’s no difference’ between it and contraception, which is quite obviously not the case based on how much they protest/bash. If it was “the same” people who were even the most lightly inclined to follow the Church would do it, because it was easy. But it’s not. It’s DRASTICALLY different and the war over it is the fundamental proof of just how incompatible the two views on it are.
  • How can one not laugh at this?
  • I had hoped this would have turned out better, but sadly no. A quick prayer for him and his family: God bring healing those are suffering and peace to those who have died.

QH’s – freedom, teaching and foster care

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

More Quick Hitters (QH’s):

  • Here’s your quote of the day: “There is no absolute freedom: You can free from vice and bound to virtue or you can be free of virtue and bound to vice.” -Radio Replies. A profoundly true statement and one that reminds me of Mark Shea’s Axiom “Sin makes you stupid”.
  • Jaime Escalante died yesterday (3/30/10). In addition to saying a quick prayer for a safe passage to heaven, I wanted to share a link to a very interesting article about him: We all know the dramatized story in the movie “Stand and Deliver” but the truth is always more complicated than the drama and very few know the story of how it all came crashing down not long after the movie was released. To me, it’s a story of everything that is wrong with public education and worth reading.
  • There was an article yesterday in the Sacramento Bee about a new state rule limiting the number of children in a foster home, both natural and foster, to 6. As a believer in big families, it’s somewhat disappointing, but from a practical perspective, it’s hard to argue with. The foster system is a disgrace and a tragedy. The social workers are overloaded and can’t monitor the families properly and a lot of the foster parents aren’t really interested in being foster parents but just taking the $660 a month (or more for kids with additional needs) for each kid and using them for themselves. The real tragedy is the dismantling of the orphanage system, particularly the Catholic system of orphanages. While it’s not perfect, it was more efficient and actually prevented the level of abuse that kids today are receiving in the foster system (and I say that even aware of the sexual abuse issues that have rocked the Church).

Added at 2:42 PM PDT:
Oh, one additional one for the day. Today is the 5th anniversary of Terri Schiavo’s death: 3/31/05. So much is misunderstood about her condition by the general public. She wasn’t on life support, only a feeding tube. She didn’t have a will or medical statement asking to die, only her husbands word versus her parent’s word. And then there’s the details of her husband’s conflict of interest (new girlfriend with whom he’d had children, wanting to get married to her in the Catholic Church, medical account for which he’d get the balance after Terri died, etc.) that never seemed to rise to the level of public consciousness. Also, Terri wasn’t “brain dead”. She was profoundly cognitively disabled and perhaps in a persistent vegetative state (a horrible medical term if there ever was one), but not dead. Let’s pray that Terri intercedes on our behalf to ask God to guide those in her former husband’s position, that they not abuse the responsibility they have to care for, not kill, those who are profoundly disabled and in their care, so that an injustice like this may never happen again, to stop the injustices that go on every day around the country but don’t receive the publicity of Terri’s plight.

Quick hitters

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

I’m going to try and do a daily post with a bulleted list of thoughts I’ve had in the last 24 hours:

  • In CA there’s going to be a vote in November for legalizing Marijuana. On the radio this morning “Bishop Ron Allen” came on. So I tried to look up what church he was a Bishop for. I even signed up for facebook (something I’ve been avoiding) to see if his facebook page said. No dice, across the board. All I know is that he’s the president of the International Faith Based Coalition and he graduated from Trinity Bible College, which appears to be associated to the Assembly of God. I didn’t think they had Bishops though… strange.
  • Last night at RCIA there was a discussion about the latest round of pedophilia issues in the Church. Of course it’s a terrifying thing that this happened at all, but it’s just amazing to me how distorted it is. John Paul II was pretty ambivalent about doing anything outside of praying for healing and somehow he never took any heat, but now Benedict who’s been very proactive and should be considered an ally by those who want to see this rooted out is under attack. It’s just further proof that those who are advancing the agenda these days aren’t about fixing the Church, but about tearing it down. I take great comfort in the steps that have been taken in the US to prevent this problem and am optimistic that the same changes will happen in Europe too.
  • I should have my copy of “The God Delusion” by this weekend and I’ll start in with my thoughts on it shortly.