Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Braddock and Washington

From The Fellowship of the King:
  The British General Edward Braddock and his young colonial aide George Washington are often portrayed as symbols of the antagonism brewing between Britain and her Colonies during the French and Indian War, which would soon burst forth in the form of the American Revolution. This is partly true, but their relationship and the relationship between Britain and America were and are much more complex than has often been portrayed in grade school history texts and Hollywood motion pictures. There was also something deeply human about their interaction that is often overlooked in favor of a more easily understood narrative that chooses sides rather than seeks out the middle way.
   In February of 1755, Edward Braddock, a 62-year-old veteran of the prestigious Coldstream Guards and native of Perth, Scotland, was sent to North America to ostensibly “put the French in their place” and push them further west to make room for the expanding British colonies in the Ohio River Valley. The colonists themselves were enthusiastically behind this push for supremacy, and initially welcomed the regular troops sent from the Mother Country to aid them in the territorial struggle, known as The French and Indian War in America and The Seven Years War in Europe.

     But problems arose almost immediately, involving the proper accoutrement of these newly arrived troops and misunderstandings on both sides. The British viewed the colonists, by and large, as low-life opportunists who tried to get best edge on every deal and refused to obey orders or conform to disciplinary regulations. The colonists, on the other hand, resented the pompous and bullying attitude of the British officers, including Braddock, who refused to acknowledge that the Americans could ever stand on equal footing with them in social, political, or military spheres. (Read more.)

Trump's Fifty Points

The facts on Hillary Clinton, via NewsMax. A must-read. To quote:
Donald Trump is releasing a 35-page document that takes down Hillary Clinton's foreign policy and economic stances — a 50-point attack that pulls together news articles, documents and speeches critical of the former secretary of state.

The presumptive GOP presidential nominee tweeted out the release of "Top 50 Facts About Hillary Clinton From Trump 'Stakes of the Election' Address" on Sunday afternoon. (Read more.)

On Christian Monarchy

From an Orthodox blog, The Soul of the East:
While Enlightenment political thought was less violent in America, the French Revolution was a bloodbath that ended in tyranny. And it’s philosophical heirs, particularly Russia’s Bolshevism, lay claim to the greatest genocides in human history. According to cultural and philosophical critic Jay Dyer:

“French Revolutionary demagogues, such as Danton, Robespierre, the Duke of Orleans, Marat, and St. Just, were all members of secret societies and Illuminist orders. Many communists leaders such as Vladimir Lenin were also “Illuminists.’ Through infiltrating Freemasonry, many of these bloody men were also inducted into a deeper, darker society within the ranks known as the Illuminati.

“The Illuminati had been formed in 1776 by an ex-Jesuit canon lawyer named Adam Weishaupt, in Bavaria. Weishaupt, who was immersed in rationalism, intended to organize an elite group that would eventually install a one-world, socialistic order and abolish theology. Weishaupt seems to have been the key ideological figure behind the revolutions of the 18th and 19th centuries that ultimately removed all forms of monarchy and effectively cut off Christianity from having any cultural influence.”

Modern governments have no contract with God but rather claim a “social contract” between the government and its subjects. Instead of God being the highest authority, that role now belongs to “the people.”

Jesus Christ is not part of the contract. Compare this to the vows made by a King such as Russia’s Czar Nicholas II at his coronation:

“May my heart be in Thy hand, to accomplish all that is to the profit of the people committed to my charge and to Thy glory, that so in the day of Thy judgment I may give Thee account of my stewardship without blame; through the grace and mercy of Thy Son, Who was once crucified for us, to Whom be all honor and glory with Thee and the Holy Spirit, the Giver of Life, unto ages of ages. Amen.”
(Read more.)

Monday, June 27, 2016

Mme de Staël and the Mystery of the Public Will

One of my favorite characters who makes an appearance in both Trianon and Madame Royale. From The New York Review of Books:
Mme de Staël did not present this problem as a matter of political philosophy. Although she frequented philosophers, notably Benjamin Constant, one of her many lovers, she was known primarily as a literary figure—a salon lioness, a romantic novelist, and the woman who defied Napoleon, preferring exile to subjection. Yet she grasped something that had eluded political theorists and that is still worth pondering. It was the importance of public opinion at the deepest level of political life—neither the shifting, short-term views of policies and politicians nor a preference that could be tallied in the form of votes, but rather a visceral, collective emotion that linked a people to its leaders.

Should that tie be broken, Staël maintained, the public could develop such a sense of estrangement that the political elite, whether royal ministers or elected officials, could no longer manage public affairs. This kind of disaffection ultimately explained the failure of the French Revolution, she argued, and she made the argument by working it into a full-scale history, Considérations sur les principaux événements de la révolution française (Considerations on the Principal Events of the French Revolution), her last and most ambitious book, published posthumously in 1818. (Read more.)

Catholic Outreach and the Clergy

From The Christian Review:
  1. Good-willed, but naive, Catholic laypersons go to one of their priests to talk about supporting “pro-life” in the election only to be rebuffed, either outright, or with a lecture about social justice, or with a nod of head which leads to nothing being done.
  2. These same lay Catholics then begin to talk to others in the parish only to find many are also hostile, or fear “politicizing” the church, or are worried about what “father” will think: “Have you asked Father?” they will ask.
  3. These same lay Catholics are bewildered by the fact those in the parish are not responsive to political engagement on the side of protecting life and end up doing little or nothing, and becoming cynical about the Church’s commitment to life.
  4. It’s become standard practice in US parishes not to talk about abortion, especially during a campaign season, for many reasons, the most ridiculous one being the charge that to preach against abortion is a partisan activity. (Read more.)

A New Religious Persecution?

From TFP:
America has never experienced the butchery of bishops and priests that characterized the persecution of the Church by atheistic Communism during the twentieth century or the Jacobins during the French Revolution’s Reign of Terror (1793-1794). However, our nation may soon witness the same wholesale confiscation of Church property that accompanied these bloody persecutions.

Aided by a secularist media, an orchestrated effort is under way by Survivors Network for those Abused by Priests and Other Clergy (SNAP), Voice of the Faithful, and other liberal Catholic advocacy groups, to lift or extend retroactively civil statutes of limitations nationwide.

California was the first state to do so. In 2003, the Golden State approved a one-year “window of opportunity,” a “look-back” period that suspended the civil statute of limitations and allowed lawsuits to be filed regardless of when the abuse is alleged to have taken place. Media reports say 1,000 lawsuits were filed.

State legislatures across the nation are now being asked to amend their civil statutes of limitations for childhood sexual abuse crimes in similar ways, or to abolish them altogether. If such changes become a national trend, we can expect to see the Church paying out billions of dollars to defend itself and to fund the resulting awards and settlements. As Prof. Patrick J. Schiltz, Saint Thomas More Chair in Law at St. Thomas University in Minneapolis, observed:

It’s like warfare… Phase One was for plaintiff lawyers to maximize bad publicity and destroy the credibility of the Church. Phase Two is to use that publicity to push for legislative changes. Phase Three will be to collect.[1]
Estimated awards and settlements for the Church sexual abuse scandal already exceed two billion dollars. But with legislative changes, the total cost may be many billions more before the storm blows over.

Once insurance limits are exhausted, these billions will come from Church bank accounts and then from the sale of Church assets on the auction block. This means real property such as churches, schools, and hospitals and personal property like vehicles, vestments, and chalices. (Read more.)

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Summer Place

From Victoria:
“My father was very Hemingway-esque, very much a bon vivant,” Margot adds. “He was always saying, ‘Look at this!’ He was informing my eye, training me to appreciate beauty and good design.” As a result of these excursions, the young girl’s creative side blossomed, and her father’s enthusiasm took root in her soul. Margot’s interest in design took a different form years later, when she worked with noted Birmingham, Alabama, floral designer Sybil Sylvester. Under her masterful tutelage, Margot says she “learned to think outside the framework of normal, expected arrangements.

”When she married, twenty-two years ago, she and her husband, Gates, moved into her house while searching for a residence for their newly blended family. Fortunately, the couple didn’t have to look far; they found a charming farmhouse on a 3-acre lot just a stone’s throw away. Among several structural changes they made was converting one bedroom into two baths—a necessity with three daughters between them. (Read more.)


Is Progressivism the New Communism?

From Western Journalism:
Although Progressive share much in common with CPUSA and DSA, they are shrewd enough to understand the terms “communist” or “socialist” are unpalatable for most Americans. Hence, the word “Progressive” was injected into American political verbiage. While the words are not interchangeable, one thing is for sure: The CPC is doing its part to further the goals of modern Communists and Socialists who have found a voice in the Democratic Party.

In 2002, Communist Party USA PAC leader Joelle Fishman reported CPUSA uses the Congressional Progressive Caucus as “an important lever” to “move the debate to the left.” A February 2, 2010 Communist Party USA article “Convention Discussion: A Time to Grow” explained they plan to meet their goals by running for office “within the auspices of the Democratic Party” because “conditions rarely if ever allow us to run open Communists for office.” (Read more.)