Friday, March 22, 2013

The Copperhead

A collaboration between Bill Kauffman and director Ron Maxwell. Trailer:


It's a sincere effort, but it may be borderline with respect to theatrical quality. (Some of the acting seems more appropriate for cable television.)

Dissent in Wartime: 1860s Edition by Daniel McCarthy
Bill Kauffman, See You at the Movies

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Will he have time to reconsider?

Wendell Berry’s Marriage Reversal by Christopher C. Roberts
NPR: What's Worked, And What Hasn't, In Gun-Loving Switzerland by SORAYA SARHADDI NELSON

There's a short soundbite with Stephen Halbrook.
Today I picked up Sarge, who is in town for a weekend retreat. We had lunch at Korean Bar-B-Que in San Bruno, notable for its use of a charcoal fire rather than gas. I thought the quality of the kalbi might have been better than what you might find at Palace, but the marinade, while tasty at first, eventually struck me as having too much sugar. There was a good selection of side dishes, including the soy sauce potatoes, which Palace does not have. If I had to choose between Korean BBQ and Brazilian, I think I would choose Korean. If I'm in search of a meal and in the San Bruno area, I would consider going there again.

(We went around 1:30 - not too many people there at that time; maybe many had already finished eating.)

Star Trek Into the Darkness International Trailer

Boy captain to save the day?

Has JJ Abrams ever made a movie featuring a real man as the hero? While his films have featured male protagonists, none of them really seem to be "dangerous" or "manly." Kyle Chandler was a minor character in Super 8; I haven't seen that movie so I don't know how effective (i.e. competent, taking charge and assertive) his character is. (I suspect the character is manly, but he is just overpowered by the strength of the Fed. government.) Abrams's Spock may be better than Kirk, but that's because he doesn't have to emote like an adultlescent.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

I know what I said to myself on Saturday but today's class was a  handful, so it was a choice between Chick-fil-A and Five Guys. I decided on the latter; didn't feel like paying $$ for a fast food chicken sandwich. Maybe next time. Attended the Loafer's Glory performance at DQ, wanted to get a photo of the band but didn't have a chance to. Maybe next time - I hope they get a bigger venue somewhere closer.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Failure of Bishops

From A New World Pope (Some National and Social Context) by Timothy J. Cullen:
This writer has lived in South America for nine years now, and began spending “non-tourism” time on the continent more than twenty years ago. Persons unfamiliar with South America—regardless of how many films they have seen that are set in it—cannot easily grasp the social conditions in even the more prosperous nations, let alone in those marked by a very high degree of social inequality. The Church—Her hierarchy in particular—has long been perceived by the poor as allied with the wealthy and powerful families that have dominated the region for centuries but have now lost political power to the “resuscitated” revolutionaries of the Sixties and Seventies who to a certain extent have put the promises of Liberation Theology into practice. Traditional Catholicism in particular is often viewed as “elitist” and out of touch with the masses if not with the Mass. The SSPX, largest of the Traditional Catholic priestly fraternities, has no presence in Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia, the three South American nations with the most left-leaning governments, and precious little presence outside of the major cities of the others. In my own rural village, to go no further, outside of one family, there is no interest in the old Mass and nearly no one has heard of the SSPX or has any interest in it, dismissing it as either “the rich people’s Church,” or worse, “the oppressors’ Church”. A goodly number of the villagers reject the Church entirely for this same reason, although they claim nearly to a man to be Catholics.

Hilary Hahn and Hauschka Instrument Interview: Violin and Piano (Sleepover Shows)

Another Piece on Dorothy Day

The Dorothy Day Few of Us Know by Stephen Beale

Also at Crisis: The Logic of the Court and the Prospect of Homosexual Marriage by Robert R. Reilly

Feast of St. Joseph, March 19

I did not know he is patron of China. (Read about the "Canton Conference.")

This image was shared by Leah Darrow - I don't know its origin. Why doesn't it produce the same psychological effect as an icon? Is the difference in perception due solely to familiarity? Is it too "cartoon-like" while icons are not? (The halos should be redone.)  I think parts of my reaction is caused by the background - if it were against the typical yellow or gold background, it would be slightly better. Too western? Their appearances seem more "European" - like Russian icons of the 19th century, but to an even greater degree?

Inaugural Mass of the Pontificate

Text of the homily:
Vatican News
Radio Vaticana

Pope Prays at Tom of St. Peter Before Inaugural Mass at Square

Monday, March 18, 2013

Ridley Scott Should Retire

Or humble himself enough to seek out good scripts. What happened to the Blade Runner project?

Ridley Scott Wants Christian Bale to Play Moses in His Biblical Epic, Exodus

I do not think it will be as good as Ten Commandments, and I wonder if it will be sufficiently respectful to the religious content of the story, though it probably has a better chance since it is not identified as being a "Christian" story for many.

Mass for the Inauguration of the Pontificate of Francis on EWTN


Mass For The Inauguration Of The Pontificate Of Pope Francis
Tues. Mar. 19 at 3:30 AM ET, 6 PM ET, 12 PM ET
A Mass of Inauguration for the 266th Successor to St. Peter, Pope Francis.

Pope to keep his bishops' coat of arms and motto
Pope Francis’ coat of arms and motto, explained


I hope Sunday was the last time I go to Five Guys. Not that I'll back it up with some sort of solemn promise. (Still need to finish the post about people who wear thug fashion in public.)

Sunday dinner hours were quite busy - a lot of families feeding there. I overheard some middle school boys (pre-teens/or maybe 13?) talking since they were sitting next to me. One of them called another, "Bro." This sort of causal intimacy, which habitually comes out of the mouths of young (and not-so-young) men strikes me as being a form of fake, casual intimacy. Maybe pre-teens and teens understand something about brotherhood from real brothers; but have they lived long enough to know what it means to stick out hard times with their buddies?

I can't imagine vets of WW2 calling each other bro, even though they had earned each other's respect and affection. But I have heard Iraq vets use that word. The males of our generation and younger may have picked up this habit, but what does the habit really signify? Anything genuine with respect to the relationship? Or is it more of an indicator that men are noticing the loss of close friendship and fraternity among men in our "society" and are trying to make up for it with this sort of a term of casual intimacy or endearment?

Did adelphopoiesis (made infamous by John Boswell) arise in the Byzantine Empire, not only as an alternative to the blood-brotherhood ceremonies found in other societies (too pagan?), but because of the scale of the cities precipitated a loss of friendship between men? Does it originate in causes similar to teh development of oaths of brotherhood  in gangs and secret societies?

I am reminded of Jack Donovan's post on Geoffroi de Charny and true chivalry, and how Donovan encouraged men to read it as a source of the Western martial way. Are knights too "aristocratic" or tied up to feudal notions of nobility? I have to say that I prefer Greek or Roman republican model, but it may be that republicanism is not wholly foreign to the Germanic nations. It seems to me that the pre-Christian Germanic tribes may have been more "republican," electing their own leaders (the kings). I do not think Christianity was the cause of greater social stratification, but their success in conquest and trying to maintain their political system while growing too big. (Sound familiar?) Nonetheless, knights and such are not a republican institution? While there has been a resurgent interest in the Spartans, they may not be an ideal commendable to Americans, either.

At the restaurant I also saw a Caucasian man (with a Hispanic wife?) wearing a front baby carrier. Such men are mocked by others (especially Roissy) for being less than manly. Besides the visual association of baby carriers with women, is there something inherently less manly about a man wearing a baby carrier? A man should keep his arms free for defense; not only that, but concealed carry seems to be impossible when one is wearing a front baby carrier. A rear baby carrier also gets in the way of combat - who would want to put an infant at risk if he could help it? The mother should be taking the child to safety, fleeing or seeking cover. If a man holds a child, he should do it with his hands so he can pass the child off to the mother when necessary. Men should remember the Boy Scout motto of their youths, "Be prepared."

Now, this sort of defensive warrior mindset may be unfamiliar with the sheeple of California, who entrust defense (as well as leadership and liberty) to the political elites. They might even reject it as being unnecessary to a "civilized" age. So be it. But they deserve the scorn they receive from other men as a result.

What of the herb's entitled queen? Does she carry anything? Usually, no, though she may have a child or two in two, maybe not.

"Macho" culture... may not be so macho after all?
1. Are a lot of "patriarchs" just betas demanding unearned alpha status with their women? They do not generate attraction or respect (even if that is owed, along with obedience). It may be that modern career women have disdain for the "ordinary" male - was this true also in the past, in the traditional "patriarchal" culture of China? Or were the women too busy to judge whether their men deserved their respect?

2. They may think of women as being "inferior" men and show a lack of respect towards women, but they are unable to lead them (or love them). Is a lot of Latino "machismo" just talk/bluster/maybe even physical abuse, but no real masculinity other than raw strength or aggression? A man resorting to brute force to deal with his woman, without anything else to make up for it? Would a resentful woman mind it so much if that sort of talk was coming from a man to whom she is attracted?

Conflicts for Married Priests?

1. I think priests are now allowed to fight in [just] wars, even in defense of a city under seige.
I think the prohibition against shedding blood in warfare is an old one (maybe in the ancient canons)? I do not know if such a prohibition also applies to instances of legitimate self-defense. Are married priests allowed to shed blood in order to defend his family?

2. What about married priests acting like alphas in the home, in particular, in the bedroom? Or with how they handle their wives? (Rather than an "egalitarian" sort of friendship, companionate model.) It might seem to the pious that the married priest, above all, fits the TOB model or stereotype of the always sensitive/gentle lover. (Note that I do not use the word "considerate" here - what if your wife actually wants you to be alpha?)

Should a husband have spiritual authority over his wife as a priest over a parishioner? Is this probably not advisable? Or is this only applicable to spiritual direction, as opposed to being the spiritual "leader" of the parish, and by extension his wife and their family. The authority of the priest over his flock is different from the lay leadership of the parish.* Perhaps the authority of a priest is more limited than we who have a clericalist mindset might think.

Let us forget for the moment the priest/parishioner fantasy; this probably would not come into play if the wife had already been accustomed to the idea of a married priesthood. Is a priest always a priest? Is the king always the king, even when dealing with his family within the boundaries of his home? Or is he father and husband as well? One or multiple roles? Does he wear one hat all of the time? Or does he switch hats as the situation demands?

*And lay leadership of the parish (which should be in the care of men) may not be identical with political leadership, as the Church is not identical with the polis, though there is "overlap."

CNS: Francis called ecumenical pope

(thoughts by Ukrainian Catholic Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk)

Catholic "Culture"?

New from Sophia Institute Press: Rebuilding Catholic Culture by Ryan Topping

From the description:
Rarely does a book come along that so succinctly explains the decline of modern culture, articulates a defense of the Church's teachings, and offers a hope-filled path for building a civilization grounded in Catholic truth.

In these pages, Dr. Ryan Topping does all three, pulling back the curtain on the false philosophies of the secularists and showing that in the West today the most formidable threat to freedom is not failing economies or Islam, but secularism. Our best defense, he claims, is a vibrant Catholic culture, and our best hope for creating it lies in the principles found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

This book takes you on a masterful journey through the relevant portions of the Catechism, distilling sophisticated theological concepts into words that are simple, clear, and direct, while unpacking its core teachings on faith and morals that nurture true civilizations.

In Rebuilding Catholic Culture, you'll also discover sensible ways to begin restoring Catholic culture — right now — in your own life and family, and in our larger communities as well: in the theater, the classroom, in our hospitals, and even in the public square.

This profoundly accessible book will renew your confidence in the world-transforming character of our Creed and in the potency of our Faith to shape and redefine the culture of the West.

Fr. Aidan Nichols has endorsed the book. Still, can you have a culture without first having a people? And when we are talking about the people of God, are "natural" means sufficient for constituting this people? A new Catholic Culture must be preceded by the New Evangelization, but baptisms are not enough, telling famlies to be "more Catholic" isn't enough - families must be strengthened through solidarity with other families of the local parish. They must bear a common witness to Christ and hold up one another.

But the author appears to address sex egalitarianism and feminism. From Reading the Catechism, Rebuilding Catholic Culture:

CWR: What are the three main prejudices against the family and what can be done to rebut and rebuff them?

Dr. Topping: The first prejudice derives from Marxism and constitutes the initial wave of attack upon the family. Marx and Engels called marriage the primordial institution of slavery. Since marriage – and above all the act of begetting and raising children – normally requires woman to work more within the domestic sphere, Marxists argued that it subjected women to unequal treatment. Philosophically, this claim is weak. Whenever one speaks of equality we always have to ask: according to what unit of measurement? Man and women are manifestly unequal in all sorts of ways (average weight, for instance). Marxists claim political power and money are the correct units of measurements. Do we need to accept this? While money matters, the correct unit of measurement, according to Jews and Christians, is virtue. Men and women are equal in terms of their capacity for wisdom, and courage, and because they equally bear the imago Dei.

The second wave came from feminists who argue that sexual fidelity works against freedom. The argument during the 1960s went that woman should be as free to be unfaithful as are men. It is true that it has always been easier for men to walk away from women. The pill and then abortion made it possible for women to walk away from their children. Here again, Christians propose an alternative vision. Authentic freedom, in our view, comes not through license but through sacrificial love. We gain through giving, and give most fully in a marriage open to children.
The third prejudice, the third wave of the attack on the family, comes from the gender theorists. For a generation already college students – and now elementary school students – have been taught to blink obediently before the claim that “gender is a construct.” This is foolish. Nouns have gender. Men and women have sex. The gay lobby now suffers no dissent. Their persecution carries forward a long war aimed at asserting the rights of sexual freedom over nature.

Sometimes Christians wonder: why not let gays marry? As with everything, our response must be as clear as it is charitable. But let us not be fooled: against the gay lobby we are fighting a zero sum political contest. Every advance of gay marriage rights issues an assault on a child’s right to a mom and a dad. Sex, and the obligations which flow from masculinity and femininity, are not mental constructs. Sexual distinction is rooted in our biology; maleness and femaleness each uniquely reflect back the glory of God. The success of the gay lobby will destroy the freedom of every family in America to educate their children in this most basic of truths: that boys and girls are created to grow up to become men and women.
Of course argument and defense through law is necessary to preserve marriage in our time. But above all else, what our battered and wounded society needs are more witnesses to the joy of faithful and fruitful married love.

Critical Acclaim For Professor’s New Book

The League of the South

(via Rebellion)

official website
The danger? The assumption that the Holy Spirit is behind your election and endorses all of your personal preferences and opinions. Thinking with the mind of the Church is something that applies to all?

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Anthony Wong Has His Own Yip Man Movie

Twitch: HKIFF 2013 Review: IP MAN - THE FINAL FIGHT Displays Both Humility and Strength
Went to Palace tonight to join in a celebration of HS's birthday. I enjoyed doing most of the grilling. "Oooooo fire." Maybe I will have time tomorrow to do a couple of posts.