27 May 2016

"Certainly, almost all Heresiarchs were either bishops or priests"

"...although democracy is absolutely the worst form of government nevertheless, it appears more pernicious for the Church than aristocracy. Accordingly, the worst thing for the Church is heresy: however, heresies are more often excited among the aristocrats, than among the common faithful. Certainly, almost all Heresiarchs were either bishops or priests; therefore, heresies are almost like factions amongst aristocrats, without which there would be no sedition in the Church of the people. But factions never arise more easily or frequently than when aristocrats rule, as can be proved not merely from example, and the testimony of philosophers, but even from the confession of Calvin himself."

--St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice

Good to Keep in Mind

When He Returns

The iron hand it ain’t no match for the iron rod
 The strongest wall will crumble and fall to a mighty God
 For all those who have eyes and all those who have ears
 It is only He who can reduce me to tears
 Don’t you cry and don’t you die and don’t you burn
 For like a thief in the night, He’ll replace wrong with right
 When He returns

 Truth is an arrow and the gate is narrow that it passes through
 He unleashed His power at an unknown hour that no one knew
 How long can I listen to the lies of prejudice?
 How long can I stay drunk on fear out in the wilderness?
 Can I cast it aside, all this loyalty and this pride?
 Will I ever learn that there’ll be no peace, that the war won’t cease
 Until He returns?

 Surrender your crown on this blood-stained ground, take off your mask
 He sees your deeds, He knows your needs even before you ask
 How long can you falsify and deny what is real?
 How long can you hate yourself for the weakness you conceal?
 Of every earthly plan that be known to man, He is unconcerned
 He’s got plans of His own to set up His throne

 When He returns

--Bob Dylan

26 May 2016

Corpus Christi

...Jesus brings us to the Father, the Father draws us to Jesus. A Christian cannot do without Christ; He is, in the strictest sense of the word, our Pontiff, the great Bridge-builder who has spanned the abyss between God and us. At the end of the liturgical cycle in which we commemorate the mysteries of the Savior, the Church, who like a good Mother knows that our spiritual life cannot subsist without Jesus, leads us to Him, really and truly present in the Most Holy Sacrament of the altar. The solemnity of the Corpus Domini is not just the simple memorial of an event which took place almost two thousand years ago at the Last Supper; rather, it recalls us to the ever-present reality of Jesus always living in our midst. We can say, in truth, that He has not "left us orphans," but has willed to remain permanently with us, in the integrity of His Person in the fullness of His humanity and His divinity.

-- from Divine Intimacy, by Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D.

Therefore whosoever shall eat this bread, or drink of the chalice of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the Body and of the Blood of the Lord. But let a man prove himself; and so let him eat that bread, and drink of the chalice. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the Body of the Lord.

-- from the Epistle for today

25 May 2016

75 Years of Bob Dylan

Yesterday was Bob Dylan's 75th birthday. I knew it, but forgot to blog it.

STLToday has this nice little photo retrospective for your enjoyment.

Bob: proof God exists and that He loves us.

For your enjoyment, a little ditty from Dylan's The Times They Are a-Changin', and apropos of nothing:

Boots of Spanish Leather (1963)

Oh, I’m sailin’ away my own true love
 I’m sailin’ away in the morning
 Is there something I can send you from across the sea
 From the place that I’ll be landing?

 No, there’s nothin’ you can send me, my own true love
 There’s nothin’ I wish to be ownin’
 Just carry yourself back to me unspoiled
 From across that lonesome ocean

 Oh, but I just thought you might want something fine
 Made of silver or of golden
 Either from the mountains of Madrid
 Or from the coast of Barcelona

 Oh, but if I had the stars from the darkest night
 And the diamonds from the deepest ocean
 I’d forsake them all for your sweet kiss
 For that’s all I’m wishin’ to be ownin’

 That I might be gone a long time
 And it’s only that I’m askin’
 Is there something I can send you to remember me by
 To make your time more easy passin’

 Oh, how can, how can you ask me again
 It only brings me sorrow
 The same thing I want from you today
 I would want again tomorrow

 I got a letter on a lonesome day
 It was from her ship a-sailin’
 Saying I don’t know when I’ll be comin’ back again
 It depends on how I’m a-feelin’

 Well, if you, my love, must think that-a-way
 I’m sure your mind is roamin’
 I’m sure your heart is not with me
 But with the country to where you’re goin’

 So take heed, take heed of the western wind
 Take heed of the stormy weather
 And yes, there’s something you can send back to me

 Spanish boots of Spanish leather

24 May 2016

"…but it’s not like we haven’t already figured it out…"

Call it the Hilary White Must-Read Trilogy.  And it's now complete

Of course, she doesn't call it that. It's my own shorthand for three recent posts concerning Reality, the reality of what has happened, where we are, and what if anything to do about it.

IF you are Catholic, or want to be, and IF you really want to deal with the reality of the current mess, and IF you want to know how to be and remain Catholic once you face reality, these three posts make for productive reading.  Well, as much as blog posts can-- no one is saying to throw your bibles or missals or catechisms away.

I'll get to the final installment, but here is a link to the first one, on the road to waking up and the concomitant "tradversion", along with my own post discussing it.

The second one is here, and covers some necessary authors and works to provide the context to our little 50+ year stuff-storm.

And the third, today, in my opinion, marks the perfect post to put a bow on the first two. Using the intended to astound and confound "news" of Msgr. Georg Ganswein's published comments on the "expanded Petrine ministry" caused by the actions and relations and coordination of the Pope and a Bishop dressed in White, 'we had the impression that it was the Holy Father' (roles as yet unconfirmed-- wait for the Third Act!), Miss White does a wonderful job of not being impressed. 

In other words, whatever the game being played, of which we are to be the dupes, she is having none of it.  And in this post, now describing the matters for daily care, now coming back to the mess, now again focusing on the real, she lays out quite the plan for "action" for the faithful remnant.  That is to say, be Catholic, focus on the real, forget the distractions, and pray.

Prayer is the only difference we are going to make here.  It is the only power we have, and it is the task Our Lord has given us.  By praying, we are able to most effectively cooperate with Divine power and grace. And isn't that enough? At the least, if we are not praying very well, what hope have we of acting well?


...Anyway, you know, this speech by Ganswein is pretty damning, to be sure. “An expanded petrine ministry…” Good grief. Seriously, do they actually expect people to buy this crap?

I dunno, maybe he meant to spill it, tell us what was really going on, while still sounding like he was on their side, like it’s a coded message or something. “Everything’s great! It’s just FINE THAT WE HAVE TWO POPES, isn’t it? Right? Wink-wink, nudge nudge… Oh, did I just say that out loud? Heh… ahem…”

Sigh… You know, I’m kind of at the stage when when I hear stuff like this, I’m more inclined to eye-rolls than anything else. Blah blah blah… world’s ending …blah blah… invalid Conclave… blah, blah…two popes … blabbity-blabbity… Great Chastisement… yadda yadda…


As for the anti-pope thing, I’m just going to stick with my original theory: it’s possible Bergugsie is an antipope. It’s possible that Benedict was coerced and this whole resignation thing has been bullshit from the start and the Conclave was a lie that everyone went along with. In fact, I’m going to go so far as to say that I think that’s getting to look more and more likely all the time. But it still isn’t my call to make. I’m officially agnostic on the antipope question.

The doo-doo hit the fan three years ago, and we are in no position, whilst swimming in the midst of it all, to make such determinations. In the history of the Church, these have always been the things that future popes and ecumenical councils have had to work out. Previous ages of chaos have required a lot more work than a blog post to sort out. I’m just glad it’s not going to be my job.


As a Traditionalist Catholic, it’s a great deal easier not to get into a tizzy over it all. I Tradded 13 years ago because the logic attached to the observable facts led to precisely this conclusion. The abandonment of the Principle of Authority and adoption of “make-reality-up-as-we-go-along” Modernism. When you’ve got people who refuse to pay attention to the Logical Principle of Non-Contradiction, who deny ontology, who can’t define “is”… it was going to lead to this exact moment; utter chaos, bad prelates just doing whatever the hell they want, saying whatever the hell they want, despoiling the Church for every nickel they can get, using their Modernist excuses to bugger the choir boys with impunity…

The things I observed 13 years ago were like looking down and seeing that I was standing on a road. It was the work of a moment to look down the length of the road and see where it led, and to say, Erm… no thanks.

So I changed roads. I had to wade through some tall weeds and hike around a bit to find the Old Road, and it was pretty difficult to see, all hidden and ignored as it was and sometimes grown over. But it was there, and seeing it made it possible to look along its length and see that this was where I was supposed to be going; somewhere much nicer than where NOChurch was going....

23 May 2016

I Try to Analyze These Things Like a Lawyer Would

Last week witnessed the brouhaha surrounding the report at OnePeter5 that Pope Benedict XVI (the still-living Bishop of Rome, wearing white, still bearing the title of Pope, residing in Rome-- remember him?) admitted that the full Third Secret of Fatima has not yet been released.  Opposed to this idea, in addition to the usual suspects in the liberal "Catholic" media and their cuckservative counterparts in the blogosphere, was, notably and surprisingly, Rorate Caeli.  

I have no inside information in the Vatican, obviously.  So, the sourcing of the alleged statements, both from OnePeter5 and Vatican Radio, I cannot properly evaluate.  Yes, I mentioned the Vatican Radio report when I said "alleged" statements. 

The 1P5 report was based upon hearsay, in that the words of Pope Benedict are attested to by a third party-- a priest in the trust of the blog's author, Steve Skojec.  The report may be accurate or not, I'm just mentioning the hearsay nature of the source.  So, that weighs the scales in favor of Vatican Radio, yes?

No.  The Vatican Radio report is also hearsay, and in fact we have no information on the person reporting Pope Benedict's words, or how they were obtained. All we have is the assurance of the communique from the Holy See press office that Pope Benedict said them.

As an aside, I don't trust the veracity of Vatican Radio on the subject of Fatima, as if there has been a cover-up of the Third Secret (as there has undoubtedly been; open-minded skeptics can begin reading here), this is the type of release we would expect. And in this pontificate my trust level has gone way down. I have a high regard for Mr. Skojec's work, but to be fair I cannot analyze his report based upon the source either.

As a result, let me just analyze the alleged statement from Pope Benedict as related by the official communique:

“Several articles have appeared recently, including declarations attributed to Professor Ingo Dollinger according to which Cardinal Ratzinger, after the publication of the Third Secret of Fatima (which took place in June 2000), had confided to him that the publication was not complete. 

“In this regard, Pope emeritus Benedict XVI declares ‘never to have spoken with Professor Dollinger about Fatima’, clearly affirming that the remarks attributed to Professor Dollinger on the matter ‘are pure inventions, absolutely untrue’, and he confirms decisively that ‘the publication of the  Third Secret of Fatima is complete’.”

That's the communique in its entirety.  No signature from either bishop in white on this one, no foundation of when and where and with whom the alleged interview with Pope Benedict took place. But again, let's read the words used:

"... never to have spoken with Professor Dollinger about Fatima." That is a modifier with possible import. Obviously, the communique wishes to deny any conversation with Dollinger, but it doesn't take Bill Clinton to parse those words such that a conversation about something else (Vatican press procedures, the New Mass, Cardinal Sodano's personal hygiene, etc.) could have produced an opinion about the 2000 release on Fatima.  And if there is any defect of memory on the exact words attributed to Pope Benedict, as opposed to the point of message, one could technically call them "pure inventions, absolutely untrue."

Please don't think that I cannot comprehend that the intended message, and the first one that comes to mind, is that the entire conversation never happened and that the 1P5 report is untrue.  Got it.  I'm just saying, if there is a press office that wishes not to lie (maybe because Catholics shouldn't) and is employing a whopper of a mental reservation (which it might find justifiable) this is one way to do it. Note that one of the "absolutely untrue" statements from the source at 1P5 is that the vision released in 2000 (of the bishop in white whom "we took to be" the pope) was in fact authentic. Is the Vatican taking that back? I doubt that. 

Recall that no matter what the reality is, by definition one of these bishops in white we have today IS NOT THE POPE. The obvious correlation with the Third Secret's vision released in 2000, when none of this could have been humanly contemplated, should put us on guard about the heady nature of these times.

Finally, consider this part of Pope Benedict's alleged statement: "the publication of the Third Secret of Fatima is complete." The publication is complete. To me, that says, "That publication is all you're going to get.  We are not going to publish any more. Or, alternatively, "The publication (of the vision released in 2000) is complete. That is the vision the children saw.  The vision Sr. Lucia wrote down.  It makes no comment on the words of Our Lady that Sr. Lucia attested had been made, and which have not been published. And that is the whole ballgame-- and maybe the heavenly, official hermeneutic of Vatican II?  

One other way of parsing this, a notion made in the past, and discussed extensively by Antonio Socci, is that the entire Fatima secret semi-release and cover-up involves a large scale mental reservation, but in the end is true-- the vision, JPII's statements at Fulda and at the beatification ceremony of visionaries Francisco and Jacinta, the Marian apparition at Akita, and other Vatican press releases, taken together and in their entirety, have produced a full release of the Third Secret overall.

But timman, you are reading this too strictly, and are straining gnats while swallowing camels! I answer that God gave us brains for a reason, and no less an example than St. Thomas More argues for a careful reading of words, when words' meanings are important.

Well, that's my take. I have no way of verifying the 1P5 report, and I have no way of verifying the Vatican Radio report.  The record of the Vatican on Fatima has not been stellar.  You can make your own call. I have no doubt that the words of Our Lady surrounding the vision of the bishop in white have been hidden from us, and that we are all on the brink of learning what they were the hard way.

Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.

Everything is Awesome

Pope embraces "Imam" in Rome.

Pope doesn't like conservative American Catholics.

Of course, don't file these items under "news".  There's nothing unexpected here.

20 May 2016

Dilbert Analyzes the Political Race, and Rather Well at That

You may have noticed I have at long last linked Scott Adams, the creator of Dilbert, on the blogroll at right.  In addition to a daily cartoon strip, his blog usually has some trenchant view on modernity. Today, he surveys the Trump Train v. Wicked Witch of the West matchup.  Nevertrump-ers might want to look away-- I suspect they can't handle that their position has always been a bit foolish.

I have opined to anyone who will listen (7 people and dwindling...) that Trump would bury Clinton in an electoral landslide, subject to my usual admonition that it may not matter at all, as Hillary's emails probably contain confirmation that someone already pre-programmed the voting machines. And, as one more piece of crackpottery for long-time readers, I will just predict right now that the Democrat party nominee will likely be....

Joe Biden.
Evaluating the Political Chess Board

Trump has pulled ahead of Clinton nationally in both the new FOX poll and the Rasmussen Poll. And Trump passed Clinton in favorability according to the newest national poll on that topic. The Megyn Kelly interview (including the hyping of it ahead of time) marked Trump’s third-act turn.

Meanwhile, Clinton is losing one primary after another to a dehydrated dandelion in her own party. That doesn’t bode well for the coming cage fight with Godzilla.

And Godzilla hasn’t even started to punch hard. He’s still looking at the opposition research and humming. So that’s coming.


The New York Times did its best to make Trump look like a sexist, but they only succeeded in destroyed their own credibility when their star witness outed them for making up stuff.


Clinton’s team continues to churn out anti-Trump hit pieces that ask you to imagine President Trump in office. By November, voters will think Trump has been running the country for a year and it looked a lot like the Obama administration. That’s called “graduated exposure” and it’s a well-understood psychological phenomenon. The Democrats are working overtime to make Trump feel less scary while believing they are doing the opposite.

Now imagine Clinton and Trump selecting VPs. If Clinton picks a woman, she overplays the woman card to destruction. If she selects a beta male, it will seem cringeworthy to the sexist public. If she selects an alpha male it will annoy her base without gaining a single vote. Clinton loses on every path.

Meanwhile, Trump can pick a man or a woman and it will look natural. No VP will overshadow Trump’s energy. All he needs is a running mate that is competent and a little bit interesting.

Trump announced his list of potential Supreme Court Justices. Republicans seemed to like the list, which makes Trump seem more mainstream even if you don’t like the names on the list.

A jet on the way from France to Egypt has disappeared, and terrorism is the assumed reason. That plays to Trump’s strength, as does every act of terror everywhere.

Trump has gone a few weeks without creating any new provocations on the scale of his 2015 self. The longer he proves he can moderate his behavior to fit the situation – as he did in the Megyn Kelly interview – the more people trust that he isn’t crazy.

Trump’s insults are now understood to be more than random hate. They are weapons-grade persuasion that have been engineered and then A-B tested at rallies. The “Crooked Hillary” harpoon is already doing its damage. If history is our guide, the nickname will bleed her out before November.

Paul Manafort, Trump’s campaign manager, knows how to win. The Clinton campaign doesn’t show the same level of talent, at least in terms of persuasion. Clinton’s logo (the big H) looks like a hospital sign. And their “Love Trumps Hate” slogan is two-thirds “Love Trump.” Any trained persuader knows people put more cognitive weight on the first part of sentences.

I’m teeming with confirmation bias, but from my kitchen counter, I don’t see how it can go any direction but a Trump landslide from here.

I’ll remind readers that I have disavowed all of the candidates. My political views don’t line up with any of them. My interest is in Trump’s persuasion skills.

Bob Knows, pt. 3,043

The party's over, and there's less and less to say.

-- Bob Dylan, Highlands

If there's an original thought out there, I could use it right now.

--Bob Dylan, Brownsville Girl

Original content coming soon. sometime.

19 May 2016

Prayer to Divine Providence

O Sweet and Tender Providence of God, into Thy hands I commend my spirit, to Thee I abandon myself, my hopes, my fears, my desires, my repugnances, my temporal and eternal prospects. To Thee I commit the wants of my perishable body, to Thee I commit the far more precious interests of my immortal soul, for whose interests I have nothing to fear while I withdraw it not from Thy bosom. Though my faults are many, my misery great, my spiritual poverty extreme, my hope in Thee surpasses all. It is greater than my difficulties, stronger than death. Though temptations should assail me, I will hope in Thee, though I should sink beneath my weakness, I will hope in Thee still, though I should break my resolutions a thousand times, I will look to Thee confidently for grace to keep them at last; though Thou shouldst slay me, even then will I trust Thee, for Thou art my God, my Father and my Friend. Thou art my kind, my tender, my indulgent Parent, and I am Thy loving Child, who cast myself into Thy Arms and beg Thy blessing, who put my trust in Thee, and so trusting, shall never be confounded. Amen.