Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Monday, July 30, 2007
I guess there's no harm to it, but something seems off-kilter to me. It's a strange sort of literary immortality. One of my favorite authors as a kid, John Bellairs, has the same setup. I enjoy the books, but sometimes I think it would be better if people would just write as themselves and let the characters create the sense of continuity.
Sunday, July 29, 2007
For example, the idea that professional traders collude to drive up stock prices. It's just as likely that a pro is short, say, the S&P 500, so any rise in stock prices would hurt him. Or that he's direction neutral, but he's long volatility, so he wants variation. Or that he's direction neutral, but short volatility, so he wants prices to stay where they are. Just saying. If you're going to hold forth on a topic, even on blog comments, you should do some research.
Saturday, July 28, 2007
Friday, July 27, 2007
Thursday, July 26, 2007
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Beijing, Jul. 24, 2007 (CWNews.com) - The leading figure in China's Catholic Patriotic Association has praised the Pope Benedict's message to the Church in China, and said he hopes that the Pontiff will visit his country soon.
In an interview with the Italian daily La Repubblica, Liu Bainian, the vice-chairman of the Patriotic Association, said that the papal message released on June 30 was a "positive" development.
Liu went on to say: "With my whole heart, I hope that one day, I will see the Pope here in Beijing celebrating Mass for us Chinese. Italian Catholics do not know how we very much want to see him." He asked La Reppublica to convey the message that "we pray for him continuously and for a papal visit."
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Monday, July 23, 2007
The unassuming international champion of universal health care, Michael Moore, was asked (New York Sun, June 29) whether, while filming "Sicko," he inquired about the condition of Cuban journalist Normando Gonzalez, a political prisoner since 2003. He has contracted severe chronic illnesses while in a Castro gulag. Moore answered that he asked only about Cuba's health care system while he was there.
Among other suffering prisoners in Cuban cells who would have added further dimension to "Sicko" are independent librarians, put away for more than 20-year sentences for the crime of giving Cubans access to books and other publications forbidden in state libraries. Dr. Jose Luis Garcia Paneque, for example, director of a Las Tunas library, is not being treated meaningfully for intestinal problems, hypertension and other ailments.
Healthcare for all, except those the government doesn't like. What a wonderful world.
Mingle2 - Online Dating
Really amazing that I could get this and TWA could get NC-17. Just goes to show you that it's all politics.
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Many moral absolutists figure ethical relativism means accepting whatever anyone decides they want to do. That isn't the case. Moral relativism means acknowledging that what is and isn't moral changes with one's point of view. That means each of us has to accept responsibility for the moral code we practice, and for deciding where the boundaries have to be in the societies we live in.
It's more complicated than moral absolutism. But then, relativity makes physics more complicated, too. That isn't a reason to discount it.
The problem, of course, is that you don't have any principles to argue from except your taste. As the article says, "each of us has to accept responsibility for the moral code we practice, and for deciding where the boundaries have to be". What this ends up being is the stronger party imposes its vision of morality on the weaker party. How else could you come to a social morality? So while the Church is accused of imposing its absolutist views on others, I think that in fact it's relativism that can't help but to be little more than an imposition of irrational taste by one party on another.
Just my 2 cents.
Saturday, July 21, 2007
Friday, July 20, 2007
Thursday, July 19, 2007
HEREFORD, April 5, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In a test case of the UK’s just passed Sexual Orientation Regulations (SOR’s), an Anglican bishop is defending himself in the dock for refusing to hire a man who was pursuing an active homosexual lifestyle.
The Right Rev Anthony Priddis, the Anglican Bishop of Hereford, rejected the accusation of unjust discrimination, saying that he declined to hire John Reaney as a youth worker because he admitted to engaging in sexual activity outside of marriage.
Reaney, 41, from Llandud-no, North Wales is bringing an action against the Hereford Diocesan Board of Finance, claiming that he was refused the job on the grounds that he was a homosexual. His complaint is being backed by the homosexual group, Stonewall, the notoriously anti-Christian political lobby group largely responsible for the imposition of the SOR’s.
Glad to see that courts are now competent to deny freedom of association to churches in the fine land of Great Britain.
New Website for the Vatican City-State!
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
A couple of weeks ago, the Korean market on the corner closed. It wasn’t an especially sudden thing. There was a month of destocking — or un-restocking — that filled the store with the strange feeling of accumulating absence. Then there was a brief sale — half-off anything left — and finally darkness.
I walked past the store again last night. A window had been broken and taped over, and a woman leaned against the dark storefront and asked for spare change. I had never realized how much light that store cast upon the neighborhood, how much briskness it gave its sidewalk frontage.
When the market closed, I found myself thinking, “Now what do I do with this?”
I seem to recall a quote - you're a New Yorker when what isn't anymore is more real than what is now.
Monday, July 16, 2007
Sunday, July 15, 2007
Recommended Sunday Sanity Reading
Saturday, July 14, 2007
R - e - c - y - c - l - e Recycle!
Friday, July 13, 2007
The looting and rioting that afflicted a wide swath of neighborhoods left indelible memories. D. Dolphin was a 7-year-old watching “Star Wars” at an Upper East Side movie theater with employees of his father’s Harlem bicycle shop when the screen faded to black; the group rushed back uptown to deter robbers from breaking into the store. Brenda Perryman, who had just traveled from Detroit with family members to visit her brother in Brooklyn, watched the looting: “Out the window we witnessed young and old running to the stores on the corner. The gates protected the doors for only a little while. Folks hooked chains to the bumpers of their cars and pulled those gates down. A free-for-all ensued.” Nancy, who was 17 at the time, recalls shop owners sitting in their stores on Flatbush Avenue, armed.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Got CPU cycles to spare?
Monday, July 09, 2007
What I was trying to get at
However, Father Stehlin noted, the traditionalist group is not yet ready to return to full communion with the Holy See. The papal document strongly affirmed the use of the Novus Ordo Mass, and the SSPX priest observed: "The post-conciliar rite of the Mass in unacceptable."
"We also criticize the Vatican position on the subject of religious freedom," the SSPX spokesman said.
Too bad the Pope says that the post-conciliar rite is acceptable. I'm not sure it's enough to make you wrong, but I'm pretty sure it's enough to make you quite questionable.
Sunday, July 08, 2007
I wonder how this would sound today. I mean, I don't think we're supposed to emulate the mission of the 72 quite so literally, but there must be a message in there - radically trusting in God to provide for you, etc. I tried to translate a few lines as a mental exercise:
"Take no MetroCard with you"
but decided it wasn't worth it as the text is quite capable of taking care of itself.
VATICAN CITY, JULY 6, 2007 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI's apostolic letter concerning the Roman Missal promulgated by John XXIII in 1962, will not reinstate a prayer for the conversion of "perfidious Jews."
The Vatican press office announced today the Pope's letter issued "motu proprio," on his own initiative, is titled "Summorum Pontificum," and will be released Saturday at noon, accompanied by an explanatory letter.
Several media reports erroneously contend that the letter could in effect reinstate a prayer offensive to Jews from the Good Friday liturgy of the Tridentine Mass, which dates back to 1570. The prayer stated: "Oremus et pro perfidies Judaeis" (Let us pray for the perfidious Jews).
On the first Good Friday after his election to the papacy in 1959, Pope John XXIII eliminated the adjective "perfidious" from the prayer. Since then the expression "Let us pray for the Jews" has been used.
Saturday, July 07, 2007
Summorum Pontificum cura ad hoc tempus usque semper fuit, ut Christi Ecclesia Divinae Maiestati cultum dignum offerret, «ad laudem et gloriam nominis Sui» et «ad utilitatem totius Ecclesiae Suae sanctae».
Friday, July 06, 2007
Even the debate pitting creationism against evolution never raises the argument that the galaxy is a secret that ought not be explored. Both sides cite science that looks at our galaxy’s present, weigh recorded history against empirical data, and hypothesize about our origins.
So how is it that the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) -- an odious piece of lobbyist-written legislation if there ever was one -- can make a crime of reverse engineering? The DMCA circumvents laws governing copyright, patent, property, and free speech by declaring unlawful the most essential right of all: The right to know.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
The drunken night with iPhone is over, and now as we wake up next to our new love, the sober reality is not as good looking as we thought.
As we learn more about the device and its battery shortcomings, as night follows day, bad press is following good.
Wednesday, July 04, 2007
Happy 4th everyone!
It is a tragedy when a force for good becomes a force for evil. But such is the case with Amnesty International.
A brief discussion of AI's newfound support for abortion.
Just finished this little book about the history and justifications for interest by an uncle of my friend. It's a little theoretical in parts, but the relations discussed between interest, savings, and capital formation are rather well explained. I'm still not convinced enough thought has gone into these sorts of things in Catholic circles, the Mosaic prohibitions aside. There is certainly something quite invasive about debt at the lower ends of the scale that was captured in the traditional prohibitions but is now absent from serious discussion.
Rome , Jul. 3, 2007 (CWNews.com) - Italy's health minister has said that the country's new laws restricting in vitro fertilization (IVF) are responsible for a decline in the number of babies conceived using IVF.
Also file under common sense making some progress.
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
Monday, July 02, 2007
Bulwayo, Jul. 2, 2007 (CWNews.com) - Archbishop Pius Ncube of Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, has openly called for the overthrow of the government led by President Robert Mugabe.
In an interview with the Sunday Times of London the archbishop said: "I think that it is justified for Britain to raid Zimbabwe and remove Mugabe."
Archbishop Ncube later told BBC that while he suggested intervention by Great Britain, the former colonial ruler of the African country, he could justify action by any other power to ease the suffering of the people of Zimbabwe. Some action is required, he said, to oust "a government which is ready to sacrifice the lives of its people."
Come to think of it, I think Rev. Sharpton has expresses vaguely similar sentiments with regards to President Bush.
Sunday, July 01, 2007
The United States now has more than two million people behind bars, a number that has been rising steadily for decades. But state lawmakers who once would have rushed to build new prisons have begun to see that prison-building is not the best or most cost-effective way to fight crime or protect the public’s safety.
Several states have instead begun to focus on developing community-based programs that deal with low-level, nonviolent offenders without locking them up. And they have begun to look at ways to control recidivism with programs that help newly released people find jobs, housing, drug treatment and mental health care — essential services if they are to live viable lives in a society that has historically shunned them.
I'm quite excited that people are thinking about this stuff, especially in the great state of Texas, home to many a criminal. I'm not entirely sure what the feds have to do with it though.