Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I beg your pardon

Don't include me, please. 

Enteng Romano was quoted by the Philippine Daily Inquirer saying that "each Filipino is partly to blame for the failed impeachment complaint against President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo ... “Every single Filipino citizen is partly to blame. We are all accountable for what is happening to our country."

I am not party to your impeachment complaint.  You brought this failure upon yourselves.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

"In Spite Of A SJ Education"

Inside Catholic's Deal Hudson writes about Joseph Cao in "The Jesuits Produce A Great Political Candidate." As I was reading Hudson's article, I remembered some things I have written in this blog on many occasions about my Jesuit education (just search for them as I will not link this time).

Then I scrolled down to the comments. I found some that echo my own sentiments precisely. The title of this blog is copied from one comment's title.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Darn the cafeteria

“I pick and choose”

“I start every one of my days praying,” says Maria Shriver, wife of California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. “I go to church every week. I went to Catholic schools my entire life.” But, says Shriver, when it comes to Church teachings, “I pick and choose… I think I’m probably a ‘Cafeteria Catholic.’”

The greed continues

Businessweek publishes the story FHA-Backed Loans: The New Subprime.  Where is the change?  See also ST, who says, this won't help a bit.

As if they haven't done enough damage. Thousands of subprime mortgage lenders and brokers—many of them the very sorts of firms that helped create the current financial crisis—are going strong. Their new strategy: taking advantage of a long-standing federal program designed to encourage homeownership by insuring mortgages for buyers of modest means.

You read that correctly. Some of the same people who propelled us toward the housing market calamity are now seeking to profit by exploiting billions in federally insured mortgages. Washington, meanwhile, has vastly expanded the availability of such taxpayer-backed loans as part of the emergency campaign to rescue the country's swooning economy.

For generations, these loans, backed by the Federal Housing Administration, have offered working-class families a legitimate means to purchase their own homes. But now there's a severe danger that aggressive lenders and brokers schooled in the rash ways of the subprime industry will overwhelm the FHA with loans for people unlikely to make their payments. Exacerbating matters, FHA officials seem oblivious to what's happening—or incapable of stopping it. They're giving mortgage firms licenses to dole out 100%-insured loans despite lender records blotted by state sanctions, bankruptcy filings, civil lawsuits, and even criminal convictions.

Pass it on

When we "err on the side of life" (KL), we end nicely, actually.
Pass this on. (by way of MM).

And, it pays to wait. Lauren will live -- parents now in agreement: their daughter must live.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Here's the racist?

How come no one calls him racist? Maybe he is crazy, that is why? Of course his words were called "demeaning racial term", but he is never called racist.

H/T: MM. Will they talk to him, dialogue with him now?

We must also engage, however, in the more difficult task of understanding the sources of such madness. The essence of this tragedy, it seems to me, derives from a fundamental absence of empathy on the part of the attackers: an inability to imagine, or connect with, the humanity and suffering of others. Such a failure of empathy, such numbness to the pain of a child or the desperation of a parent, is not innate; nor, history tells us, is it unique to a particular culture, religion, or ethnicity. It may find expression in a particular brand of violence, and may be channeled by particular demagogues or fanatics. Most often, though, it grows out of a climate of poverty and ignorance, helplessness and despair.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Who is a racist?

The Philippine Daily Inquirer (on-line) today published Why Fil-Americans Tried to Defeat Obama. I find this typical writing of a racist. Why? Simple. It almost says "If you did not vote for Obama, you are racist."

But it has been very obvious that a lot voted according to race. Now, who is being racist?

Then again, US electoral history has shown that when the economy fizzles in an election year, the incumbent in the White House or Congress gets the boot.

Sore losers

You have been warned

Warning! Graphic!

More here. IF you have the stomach for it.

On the pro-life front

The Uruguayan President vetoed legislation that would make the small nation one of the few in the region to legalize abortions. President Tabare Vasquez made good on his promise to veto the legislation the Congress approved. Read here.

Check this site:
The group behind this put out ads in New York City's subways, and the site has had a lot of hits in a short time.

H/T: JillS

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Global warming has been licked

And it is nothing that we did.  All natural.  Prof. Don J. Easterbrook tells as why here.

He starts:

Despite no global warming in 10 years and recording setting cold in 2007-2008, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climatic Change (IPCC) and computer modelers who believe that CO2 is the cause of global warming still predict the Earth is in store for catastrophic warming in this century. IPCC computer models have predicted global warming of 1° F per decade and 5-6° C (10-11° F) by 2100 (Fig. 1), which would cause global catastrophe with ramifications for human life, natural habitat, energy and water resources, and food production. All of this is predicated on the assumption that global warming is caused by increasing atmospheric CO2 and that CO2 will continue to rise rapidly.

However, records of past climate changes suggest an altogether different scenario for the 21st century. Rather than drastic global warming at a rate of 0.5 ° C (1° F) per decade, historic records of past natural cycles suggest global cooling for the first several decades of the 21st century to about 2030, followed by global warming from about 2030 to about 2060, and renewed global cooling from 2060 to 2090 (Easterbrook, D.J., 2005, 2006a, b, 2007, 2008a, b); Easterbrook and Kovanen, 2000, 2001). Climatic fluctuations over the past several hundred years suggest ~30 year climatic cycles of global warming and cooling, on a general rising trend from the Little Ice Age.

And ends thus:

Global warming (i.e, the warming since 1977) is over. The minute increase of anthropogenic CO2 in the atmosphere (0.008%) was not the cause of the warming—it was a continuation of natural cycles that occurred over the past 500 years.

The PDO cool mode has replaced the warm mode in the Pacific Ocean, virtually assuring us of about 30 years of global cooling, perhaps much deeper than the global cooling from about 1945 to 1977. Just how much cooler the global climate will be during this cool cycle is uncertain. Recent solar changes suggest that it could be fairly severe, perhaps more like the 1880 to 1915 cool cycle than the more moderate 1945-1977 cool cycle. A more drastic cooling, similar to that during the Dalton and Maunder minimums, could plunge the Earth into another Little Ice Age, but only time will tell if that is likely.

Jennifer Rubin writes

But why should it end? The MSM championed Barack Obama throughout the primaries, clubbed his opponent, lauded him during the general election, and is now marveling at his transition. There’s no reason to stop now. If the mainstream media cared about unbiased reporting and exacting investigation, they would have made some effort earlier to balance the coverage. And now that the election of Obama has fulfilled their dreams and aspirations, why should they return to the humdrum tasks of quibbling with the press secretary, investing inter-agency squabbles, and questioning the lack of progress or the outright repudiation of campaign pledges? That might scuff up the President’s image. And it might put them on the outs with their hero.

Really, I think it’s too much to expect that the lapdog media will turn into attack-dogs or watchdogs anytime soon. After all, they have a President to help succeed.

The whole piece here. H/T: ST

Monday, November 17, 2008

Camille Paglia writes

Camille Paglia, known also for her pro-abortion stance, writes what some have called post-election confessionals.  Last week, she wrote at Salon.  Read her views about how MSM botched the job.  Excerpts:

In the closing weeks of the election, however, I became increasingly disturbed by the mainstream media's avoidance of forthright dealing with several controversies that had been dogging Obama -- even as every flimsy rumor about Sarah Palin was being trumpeted as if it were engraved in stone on Mount Sinai. For example, I had thought for many months that the flap over Obama's birth certificate was a tempest in a teapot. But simple questions about the certificate were never resolved to my satisfaction. Thanks to their own blathering, fanatical overkill, of course, the right-wing challenges to the birth certificate never gained traction.

But Obama could have ended the entire matter months ago by publicly requesting Hawaii to issue a fresh, long-form, stamped certificate and inviting a few high-profile reporters in to examine the document and photograph it. (The campaign did make the "short-form" certificate available to, a project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania.) And why has Obama not made his university records or thesis work widely available? The passivity of the press toward Bush administration propaganda about weapons of mass destruction led the nation into the costly blunder of the Iraq war. We don't need another presidency that finds it all too easy to rely on evasion or stonewalling. I deeply admire Obama, but as a voter I don't like feeling gamed or played.

Another issue that I initially dismissed was the flap over William Ayers, the Chicago-based former member of the violent Weather Underground. Conservative radio host Sean Hannity began the drumbeat about Ayers' association with Obama a year ago -- a theme that most of the mainstream media refused to investigate or even report until this summer. I had never heard of Ayers and couldn't have cared less. I was irritated by Hillary Clinton's aggressive flagging of Ayers in a debate, and I accepted Obama's curt dismissal of the issue.

Hence my concern about Ayers has been very slow in developing. The mainstream media should have fully explored the subject early this year and not allowed it to simmer and boil until it flared up ferociously in the last month of the campaign. Obama may not in recent years have been "pallin' around" with Ayers, in Sarah Palin's memorable line, but his past connections with Ayers do seem to have been more frequent and substantive than he has claimed. Blame for the failure of this issue to take hold must also accrue to the conservative talk shows, which use the scare term "radical" with simplistic sensationalism, blanketing everyone under the sun from scraggly ex-hippies to lipstick-chic Nancy Pelosi.


Given that Obama had served on a Chicago board with Ayers and approved funding of a leftist educational project sponsored by Ayers, one might think that the unrepentant Ayers-Dohrn couple might be of some interest to the national media. But no, reporters have been too busy playing mini-badminton with every random spitball about Sarah Palin, who has been subjected to an atrocious and at times delusional level of defamation merely because she has the temerity to hold pro-life views.

How dare Palin not embrace abortion as the ultimate civilized ideal of modern culture? How tacky that she speaks in a vivacious regional accent indistinguishable from that of Western Canada! How risible that she graduated from the University of Idaho and not one of those plush, pampered commodes of received opinion whose graduates, in their rush to believe the worst about her, have demonstrated that, when it comes to sifting evidence, they don't know their asses from their elbows.

Liberal Democrats are going to wake up from their sadomasochistic, anti-Palin orgy with a very big hangover. The evil genie released during this sorry episode will not so easily go back into its bottle. A shocking level of irrational emotionalism and at times infantile rage was exposed at the heart of current Democratic ideology -- contradicting Democratic core principles of compassion, tolerance and independent thought. One would have to look back to the Eisenhower 1950s for parallels to this grotesque lock-step parade of bourgeois provincialism, shallow groupthink and blind prejudice.

I held a beating heart in my hand

Waiting for him upon his arrival at the hospital that morning was a cousin along with his girlfriend. They had booked an abortion with him. Four months pregnant, the woman was about to do away with her ninth consecutive child. Adasevic refused, but his cousin was so importunate that he gave in: OK, but this was the very last time. On the USG monitor he clearly saw the child with its thumb in its mouth. Stretching the uterus, he inserted the forceps, took hold of something, and pulled. In the jaws of the forceps was a little arm. He placed it on the table, but in such a way that one of the limbs' nerve endings touched a drop of spilled iodine. Suddenly, the arm began to twitch. The nurse standing beside him almost screamed out. Just like frogs' legs in a physiology lab! Adasevic shuddered, but went on with the abortion. Again he inserted the forceps, gripped, and pulled. This time it was a leg. Just as he was thinking: "Better not let it touch that drop of alcohol", a nurse standing behind him dropped a tray of surgical instruments. Startled by the crash, the doctor released the forceps, and the leg landed right beside the arm. It too began to move.

The staff had never seen anything like it: human limbs twitching on the table. Adasevic decided to mash up what was left in the womb, and pull it out in a formless mass. He began mashing, squashing, crushing. Upon withdrawing the forceps, now certain that he had reduced everything to a pulp, he produced a human heart! The organ was still beating. Weaker and weaker it beat, until it stopped altogether. It was then that he realized he had killed a human being. The world turned dark around him. He cannot recall how long this lasted. Suddenly he felt a tug on his arm. A nurse's terrified voice called out: Doctor Adasevic! Doctor Adasevic! The patient was bleeding. For the first time in years, the doctor began praying earnestly: "Lord! Save not me, but this woman". Normally it could take up to ten minutes to clean the womb of all remaining embryonic matter. This time two insertions of the instrument through the vagina were enough to complete the task. When Adasevic removed his gloves, he knew this was the last abortion he would ever perform.

That was an excerpt of the story that appears in of Stojan Adasevic, one of Belgrade's champions of abortion -- even made more famous when he decided to stop his abortion practice and join the pro-life advocacy. Read the rest here.

H/T: Jill

Stop the War in Mindanao -- What War?

I have been receiving facebook invitations to the cause Stop the War in Mindanao.  I have ignored all of them.  There is no war in Mindanao.

There are battles in some parts of Mindanao, but these are to flush out the bad elements, rogue rebels who are not under the control of their leaders.  Even as some say that the MILF leadership actually supports these bad apples to continue with what they do, and they continue to fight the government, there is no war in Mindanao.

The NPA's have been attacking many areas in the Philippines, does this mean the Philippines is at war?

Mindanao is not at war.  Battles there (in small areas relative to the whole island) are law enforcement.

I know.  I spend 7 days a month in Mindanao.  There is no war.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

y'see y'see

The copying has started.

And here too. Well, they are both "tanned". Young and handsome, riiiiiight.


Update: And more. Goren.

Regulation more than rescue

In today's Gallup Daily poll, Americans would rather have BHO pass new, stricter regulations on financial institutions.

So why did the US Senate and Congress pass all of those bailouts? A case of Legislature not listening to the people? Earmarks, huh?

Not far from RP's case, I guess.

Monday, November 10, 2008

alumni respond to their profs


A response to the position paper Catholics Can Support the RH Bill in Good Conscience

To the community of the Ateneo de Manila University:

We, alumni of our alma mater, wish to respond to the position paper authored by 14 members of our faculty. We laud our professors for a wide-ranging presentation on the Philippine social situation, most especially the undesirable effects of an unmanaged population growth to women, the poor and our young people. We commend their dedication to the integral human development of the Filipino people in these troubling times. However, with respect and fraternal charity towards them, we respond that Catholics cannot support the RH Bill in good conscience.

The question of which method Catholics can and should use in the regulation of birth has been resolved in the encyclical letter Humanae Vitae (quoted as HV) of Pope Paul VI. "…the Church teaches that married people may then take advantage of the natural cycles immanent in the reproductive system and engage in marital intercourse only during those times that are infertile, thus controlling birth in a way which does not in the least offend the moral principles" (HV 16).

Several questions—and indeed objections—arise from this teaching. We ask, "Is this teaching of the Holy Father definitive?" While the fact remains that Pope Paul VI did not issue the above-mentioned encyclical ex cathedra, it is also a fact that the Pope and the bishops are "authentic teachers, that is, teachers endowed with the authority of Christ" (Lumen Gentium 25). "The ordinary and universal Magisterium of the Pope and the bishops in communion with him teaches the faithful the truth to believe, the charity to practice, the beatitude to hope for" (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2034).

We therefore distinguish between a solemn magisterium of the Church and an ordinary and universal magisterium (cf. Code of Canon Law 750). Catholics are exhorted to believe those things which are "proposed as divinely revealed either (italics ours) by the solemn magisterium of the Church, or by its ordinary and universal magisterium" (ibid.). "All are therefore bound to shun any contrary doctrines" (ibid.). Since Humanae Vitae is an exercise of the ordinary teaching faculty of the Holy Father, we can rely on it to be a truthful and faithful interpretation of the teachings of Jesus Christ.

A second question arises, "How did Pope Paul VI arrive at such a pronouncement? " An extensive commentary on the encyclical is beyond the scope of this letter, but it will suffice for the moment to say that the Holy Father considered two points: the social situation of his time (and indeed of ours) and an authentic interpretation of the moral law. Very early in the encyclical, Pope Paul VI recognizes that "the changes that have taken place are of considerable importance" (HV 2). He comments on the rapid increase in population and the incommensurate increase in resources, and therefore the difficulty of raising a large family.

However, he is quick to clarify that while the Church encourages parents to be responsible in planning their families, responsible parenthood "concerns the objective moral order which was established by God and of which a right conscience (italics ours) is the true interpreter" (HV 10). Neither the Church nor the Pope can invent the truth about the sanctity of human life and the divine gift that is the sexual faculty. They can only articulate and clarify it, but never create it.. In our effort to be a Church for the Poor and to look at reality from the poor's perspective, we remember that it is only Jesus who is "the Way, the Truth and the Life" (John 14:6) and we look to the Church and the Pope, to whom the keys were given, for guidance and counsel.

A third objection surfaces, "What of the primacy of conscience?" The position paper of the professors states, "Catholic social teachings similarly recognize the primacy of the well-formed conscience over wooden compliance to directives from political and religious authorities" (page 13). While it is true that our conscience always bids us to follow its voice, "in the depths of his conscience, man detects a law which he does not impose upon himself, but which holds him in obedience" (Gaudium et Spes 16).

Following one's conscience is therefore not a matter of what one "feels" or "thinks" to be right or wrong. Rather, conscience must stand as a "witness to the authority of truth (italics ours) in reference to the supreme Good to which the human person is drawn" (Catechism of the Catholic Church 177). The Catechism quotes John Henry Cardinal Newman who says, "[Conscience] is a messenger of him, who, both in nature and in grace, speaks to us behind a veil, and teaches and rules us by his representatives" (ibid. 1778). The task of conscience is therefore not to invent truth, but to discern what is true by listening to the voice of Jesus echoed by and through the Church.

It is important to understand that this argument does not lead to a "wooden compliance to directives." Our faith, in St. Anselm's words, is a faith that seeks understanding, fides quaerens intellectum. Catholics therefore do not blindly obey teachings just because they come from the Church. Rather, their faith bids them to seek to understand the mind, heart and spirit of the Church and make them his own.

In the Gospel of St. John, when the Lord told the crowd, "I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world" (6:51), some of his disciples said, "This is a hard saying; who can accept it?" (6:60). "As a result of this, many of his disciples returned to their former way of life and no longer accompanied him" (6:66). GK Chesterton poetically articulated this attitude when he said, "The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried."

We are similarly faced with a "hard saying"—a faithful and true saying, but hard nevertheless. The Church is not blind to the plight of women, the poor and our young people, but as Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales recently affirmed, this issue is not simply a matter of demographics, economics or sociology. "It's an ethical issue… It's a moral issue." The Church cannot alter the truth about the sanctity of life and the sexual faculty to provide a ready answer to our social dilemma. Catholics whose consciences are good and well formed, and are docile to the honest but firm voice of the Church are bound by conscience not to support the RH Bill. Rather, faced with strong opposition from every side, they turn to our Lord together with St. Peter and exclaim, "Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life!" (John 6:68).

Paul Christopher Cheng
AB Economics-Honors 2008

Varsolo Sunio
BS Physics-CE 2007

Gino Antonio Trinidad
AB Political Science 2008

H/T: jvincentsong

Friday, November 07, 2008

CA Prop 8 Almost a Yes II

I wanted this particular data before I posted the first CA Prop 8 Almost a Yes, but I did not have it until today through MM.
So, who supported the traditional marriage initiative in California?

Black and Latino Obama voters, according to exit polls.


Keep this in mind when you hear liberals ranting about the homophobic, intolerant California voters who oppose gay marriage.

She links to here.
Proposition 8 overturns a May California Supreme Court decision legalizing gay nuptials and rewrites the state constitution to define marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

Exit poll data showed seven in 10 black voters and more than half of Latino voters backed the ballot initiative, while whites and Asians were split.

Though blacks and Latinos combined make up less than one-third of California’s electorate, their opposition to same-sex marriage appeared to tip the balance. Both groups decisively backed Obama regardless of their position on the initiative.

Obama has said he is not in favor of gay marriage but supports civil unions. The president-elect opposed Proposition 8.

Please enforce

Despite the pundits' desire for Jill Stanek to hang up her gloves now that BO has won, she won't.  She now tells him, in her statement in

“President-elect Obama and his supporters protested loudly that he opposes infanticide of abortion survivors, contrary to what his own record confirmed.

“If it is true that Obama does not support what the late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan deemed infanticide, then he should fully support the introduction of Born Alive Infants Protection Act enforcement bills.

“There is significant evidence that babies who survive abortion are either being outright killed or shelved to die despite BAIPA’s 2002 passage. This indicates the need for the President of the United States and its government officials to truly uphold the “right to life” dictated by our Founding Fathers. We hope to have their full support to aid these babies who are born alive after abortions and provide them with necessary medical care.”
She says more in her most recent WorldNetDaily commentary on what it means for the pro-life movement, considering that:

Meanwhile all three state pro-life initiatives failed Tuesday: the California Abortion Waiting Period and Parental Notification Initiative, the Colorado Equal Rights Amendment (defining personhood as beginning at conception) and the South Dakota Abortion Ban Initiative.

And both state anti-life initiatives passed: the Michigan Stem Cell Initiative (allowing human embryo experimentation) and the Washington Death with Dignity Initiative (allowing physician assisted suicide).

Thursday, November 06, 2008

CA Prop 8 almost a Yes

Although the results for the California state ballot measures included in Tuesday's election will have to be certified, it seems that Proposition 8 will pass (52-48), and a change in California's constitution will be effected. Strange,though, that Proposition 4 did not pass. With a quick look, it seems Californians are less likely to accept gay marriages than to put additional requirements for one to procure abortions.

Arizona (56-44) and Florida (62-38) also voted for a similar measure. Arkansas passed an initiative that will ban unmarried "sexual partner(s)" from adopting children or from serving as foster parents. Colorado's Amendment 48 did not pass. It was to define the term "person" to include "any human being from the moment of fertilization", and would have effectively banned abortion in Colorado. South Dakotans also refused to impose more limits to abortion.

Washington passed Initiative 1000, to allow doctor-assisted suicide.

What next? NPA off the terrorist list?

Maybe B. Hussein Obama's winning the Presidency is truly a sign of unity.  Even the communists are rejoicing.  See the post by Michelle Malkin.  Watch the video -- comes in at about 50 seconds.

So what's next?  The US taking off the NPA from the list of foreign terrorist organizations?  Cricky.