BE READY FOR TROUBLE ELECTION DAY Apparently nobo…

BE READY FOR TROUBLE ELECTION DAY

Apparently nobody’s doing much about it. Or, some are doing too much of the wrong things about it!

What should you do if there’s a “voting” machine problem…or a problem with polling-place personnel or procedures…or they don’t provide help in cases of disability or non-English-speaking…or they try to keep you from voting at the polling place…or they move your polling place without notice…or they try to keep you away from the polling place…or they count the votes funny…or the “official counts” don’t jive with exit polls…or there are shenanigans at the County Election Board…or mainstream media shenanigans…etc.?

Expect trouble. Take a cellular phone if you can. Speak loudly, make a fuss, tell others what’s going on, ask if anyone present – even a normal civilian in line – can help, call relatives, call the election board downtown, call the media (but don’t bother with Fox TV unless they’re all you’ve got!), call a lawyer, go online and tell your story, anything else you can think of.

If they arrest you, do not resist arrest or assault the police officer – these are crimes and do not help your case or our cause…even if they assault you. Go with them politely and proudly, and tell everyone you see what’s going on, even in jail. Remember, it’s an honor to undergo inconvenience for what’s right! DO, HOWEVER, TELL THEM RIGHT UP FRONT, LOUDLY, WITH WITNESSES AROUND, IF YOU’RE ON MEDICATION YOU CAN’T DO WITHOUT IN JAIL, OR IF YOU’RE ON A SPECIAL DIET.

OTHERWISE, DO NOT LEAVE, DO NOT TAKE ELECTION ABUSE AND THEFT AND CORRUPTION LYING DOWN!

WHEN YOU STAND UP FOR YOURSELF, YOU’RE STANDING UP FOR ALL OF US…YOU’RE STANDING UP FOR AMERICA…YOU’RE STANDING UP FOR DEMOCRACY…YOU’RE STANDING UP FOR FREEDOM!

TAXPAYER-SUBSIDIZED REPUBLICAN CAMPAIGNING Bush j…

TAXPAYER-SUBSIDIZED REPUBLICAN CAMPAIGNING

Bush just used his “weekly radio address” as a not-thinly-veiled-at-all GOP campaign ad, free of charge on the radio station I was listening to. Completely inappropriate. Not to mention full of lies. But that goes without saying.

ELECTION THEFT MAY BE IN THE WORKS We’re poised t…

ELECTION THEFT MAY BE IN THE WORKS

We’re poised to retake not only the House, but also the Senate now. Remember the “mysterious Republican turnaround” in the Georgia U.S. Senate race in ’02??? Watch the pre-results exit polls…unless they’ve bought them too this time, to cover their tracks.

Remember, the Senate is especially important because without a Senate trial and conviction, an impeached president and vice-president remain in office.

And – aha! – sneaky Diebold ‘fixed’ machines in Maryland. I’m sure they did.

And Rove tells NPR it’s in the bag, just like Jeb told W. in ’00.

DRUG WAR IMMORAL? CRIMINAL? UNJUST? POLITICAL? COR…

DRUG WAR IMMORAL? CRIMINAL? UNJUST? POLITICAL? CORRUPT? TOO EXPENSIVE? NONSENSICAL? EXCESSIVE?

I wasn’t sure till I read this. (No thanks to Her Majesty’s Canadian border guards, I’m sure!!!) Now, marijuana has numerous bad health effects – some directly attributable to its relegation to the illegal economy – and some rumored good ones. But it’s smelly (I’m told). OTOH, alcohol has almost no good health effects (research unfunded by the Booze Marketing Council or some such) not shared by grape juice…and plenty of bad health AND WORSE SOCIETAL effects, but is perfectly legal, if regulated and taxed to the hilt. Makes me wonder.

I started down this road when I was researching poppy seed tea for my IBS, and wondered if anything made by God should be outlawed in and of itself. After all, poppies are beautiful flowers (according to pictures I’ve seen on the internet)! But I’ve read it is too easy to go from poppies to heroin, whose medicinal value may have been commonly believed in a century ago, but has probably been long since outstripped by pharmaceuticalized extracts (like Paregoric, which helps my IBS alot!!!), leaving only its nasty/lethal abuse and addiction problems.

From what I understand, marijuana is less harmful than alcohol, maybe even than tobacco. And we do spend an awful lot of money and energy “fighting” it at every level of government. An awful lot. And not enough researching and possibly developing its potential good effects. Or at least getting rid of the nasty smell (I’m told)!!!

Where does the Common Good lie here?

(PS: You may have heard of Mrs. Nall more recently – or more specifically, her ta-ta’s and/or underwear habits – because she’s now the Libertarian Party candidate for governor of Alabama. A regular Erin Brockovich! I have some problems with her platform, but I like her spirit!)

(PPS: I do not endorse the illegal possession or use of any controlled substance.)

CANADA TO MOVE FROM BUSH-LITE TO BUSH-HEAVY? For …

CANADA TO MOVE FROM BUSH-LITE TO BUSH-HEAVY?

For now the country is stuck with “Conservative” Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s minority government. Would “Liberal” leadership frontrunner Michael Ignatieff (yes, he’s Canadian…supposedly) actually be worse?!! Some are saying Harper is starting to show true Tory ‘colours’ after years seeming like a U.S. Repuglican. Remember, the Liberals are traditionally Canada’s big business party, because “liberal” there traditionally means what “conservative” here does…even if they’re forced to deceptively “campaign from the left” or actually throw us the people a bone every few years.

"TRUTH IN ADVERTISING" A somewhat exaggerated (I …

TRUTH IN ADVERTISING

A somewhat exaggerated (I hope!), but hilarious, series of video scenes from an allegedly slightly-longer and overpriced DVD. That fact may be a commentary in itself! (WARNING: Adult language.)

PS: Who’s the blonde? She looks familiar.

DEATH STAR Ever notice the Death Star looks like …

DEATH STAR

Ever notice the Death Star looks like one of those spherical Chinese ornaments?

BUSH TO BRING BACK JESUS?!! I just had a scary th…

BUSH TO BRING BACK JESUS?!!

I just had a scary thought: If Bush believes he’s on a mission from God, and we know he’s a conservative evangelical Protestant, he may think that if he destroys the world (nuculer war, global warming, Armageddon with Israel and Islam, environmental devastation, arsenic in the water, etc.), he’ll usher-in the Second Coming of Christ. He probably also thinks he and his will be “raptured” away before the worst of it hits.

This is my professional analysis as a theologian. Please bear with me.

An acquaintance of mine once called certain kinds of Protestants “economic Pelagians.” Normal Pelagians were the ancient Christian heretics who believed you could earn your salvation plain and simple, do something(s) so God owes it to you. Now, on the one hand, the more recent “economic Pelagians” – mostly since the Reformation, especially the Calvinistic reformations in Scotland and England, where so many powerful Americans’ ancestors come from (including some of mine, even though I’m not powerful!) – believe or fear, like most true, unreconstructed Calvinists, that God has pre-ordained who will be “saved,” so there’s nothing anyone can do about it by being good or bad or whatever. But on the other hand, they work hard to acquire and hoard wealth, so they can believe they’re blessed by God and thus “saved.”

(These are the people who have inflicted not capitalism, but modern rationalized capitalism, on the rest of us – the systematic, tightwad kind ironically condemned by the Old Testament, e.g., Don’t reap your fields all the way to the edges and corners, leave some for the poor people and the wild animals. Not to mention the New Testament [“evangelion” = “Gospel” or “good news”!], e.g., Sell all you have, give the money to the poor, and come follow Me. One of the big “light bulb” moments of my life was when I realized just how cancerous rationalized capitalism is: It’s like Walmart driving a town’s small businesses out of business, not necessarily because they’re big or convenient, but stingy enough to find and/or provide stuff cheap enough to undercut all the locals. Maximizing profit as an obsession, even a religious obsession. Like the Ferengi on Star Trek.)

What does this have to do with Bush and the Second Coming? Well, many conservative Protestants are also what I’ll call eschatological Pelagians. (Eschatology is theology of the End, a human being’s and the world’s.) Christ plainly says no human being knows when the End will come or even how exactly, not even He, but only God the Father. And St. Paul tells one of his Churches not to worry about it at all, just to trust and have hope in God. So whatever, whenever, it’s in God the Father’s hands. Yet these guys think if they can bring about, usually through government policy or opposition to same, the end of the world, or come close to it, they’ll make Christ come back, even on their timetable! I’m not making this up! And they think that by doing so they’re doing good, perhaps fulfilling certain obscure verses in their (edited) Bibles – hence the “Bible prophecy” sermons and TV shows – and presumably saving themselves, or displaying themselves to be doing God’s will, and thereby saved.

Obviously it is extremely dangerous to have someone with this kind of belief system high in the United States government, especially the Executive Branch, which in this country is virtually unchecked by Congress, the Courts, or the States…especially under a Republican President. (In recent years, even when Democrats supposedly control Congress, they do nothing about a Republican President, Nixon [eventually] excepted.) Unfortunately, with the theft of our election system, it seems there’s little we can do about it…but say our prayers.

As they say, prayer changes things!

(Not that there’s not much we should do, however!!! Not to “save ourselves,” but because it’s right. Saving ourselves, so to speak, has to do with doing God’s real will, as discerned for 2000 or more years in the Tradition of o/Orthodox Faith in God the Holy Trinity.)

BUSH TO GIVE TERRORISTS NUKES?!! "As splendidly a…

BUSH TO GIVE TERRORISTS NUKES?!!

“As splendidly as the endless occupation of Iraq and the blitzkrieg on Lebanon have turned out, such a new war of aggression {on Iran} as a first response would be condemned by every civilized nation of the world, leading most likely to a fundamentalist coup in Pakistan, putting full fledged nuclear warheads in the hands of terrorists immediately.”

This brought to you by peaceteam.net.

SUCCESSION Since 9/11 there’s been some speculati…

SUCCESSION

Since 9/11 there’s been some speculation about the Succession to the Presidency, if some catastrophe were to strike Washington, D.C. Some even allege that the statute that places the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the President pro tem of the Senate, in the line of succession, is unconstitutional, for inserting the Legislative Branch into the Executive. And some say imaginable scenarios are so chaotic as not to be remedied by the Constitution or any existing statutes as written.

The Commonwealth Crown, OTOH, has at least several thousand in its line of succession, today scattered throughout the world. (All those listed belong to European families, but many of them live outside Europe – some even in the United States.) If London were wiped off the face of the earth, the Crown would fall automatically by act of law to the next living successor. That person would presumably appear somewhere in Britain, assemble a provisional government from among surviving members of the Privy Council (e.g., former Ministers of The Crown) and representatives of the surviving Hereditary Lords, call a general election having determined there were no survivors of the House of Commons – all of this by way of reassembling Parliament, and parliamentary government, as quickly as possible. That person would also have inherited the Command-in-Chief of the UK’s military, though they would probably only act on the advice of the provisional government.

I would even argue that if by some bizarre catastrophe all the living Protestant descendants of Electress Sophia of Hanover who have never married Catholics, vanished at once, the Crown would automatically fall by Common Law to the senior heir of the most recent Monarch of Great Britain or of England (i.e., before William and Mary), being Protestant and having never married a Catholic. But this is apparently not a universal opinion.

In any event, this would have no affect on the governments of the Commonwealth Realms outside the UK, since their Governors-General and parliamentary governments would continue in office untouched. And if tragedy should strike Ottawa or Canberra (or elsewhere), the Monarch in Britain would probably appoint a provisional Governor General to put things back in order in those countries – maybe even the previous surviving GG, having experience of the job – in the absence of governmental Advice.

As a republic, we are crippled!

ZONING RELIGION? If Congress may make no law…in…

ZONING RELIGION?

If Congress may make no law…infringing the free exercise…of religion (1st Amendment), certainly states and localities may not either!

Besides, don’t churchgoers’ cars need fuel? Don’t they eat and drink and shop after worship…some denominations even before?

However, I don’t think denying liquor licenses on the basis of proximity to a church is Constitutional, either. Churches aren’t supposed to get such special treatment or deference. Although I will point out that it’s only certain types of churches that scream about alcohol…. In any case, who’s buying liquor at 9:00 on a Sunday morning?!

Anyway, is there really an explosion of downtown churches in this country?! An average of one call a month to an organization is hardly newsworthy. Must’ve been a slow holiday weekend.

(NB to the mayor of Stafford, Texas: Who does he think is patronizing his churches, out-of-staters? commuters from Mexico? Or are his new churches spontaneously-generating parishioners?! Aren’t most of them Staffordians?)

ME TARZAN. YOU JANE. "Army strong."

ME TARZAN. YOU JANE.

Army strong.”

"MILITANT SECULARISM"? Is there such a thing? If…

“MILITANT SECULARISM”?

Is there such a thing? If so, is it good or bad, desirable or not? From Orthodox Russia, the following assessment came from Bishop LONGINUS of Saratov and Volsk a couple years ago:

The ideology that used to be the Church’s foe for a century exists no longer, the ‘ghost of communism’ that Marx wrote about has now more or less dissolved. But it’s being replaced with something just as frightful – the ideology of militant secularism: the Church and everything that is connected to the spiritual, religious life of an individual is steadily driven into some kind of underground existence, there are ceaseless attempts to make them marginal in a person’s social life, so that religion wouldn’t be the basis of a person’s social and private life.

His Grace’s use of the phrase “ideology of militant secularism” is important in seeing his perspective, because in Russia Communism was often referred to by its religious foes as “the ideology of militant atheism.” Many in the Former Soviet Union honestly perceive little difference between the two; many also point out that both originated in “the West.” A related view comes from Father Sergei Sveshnikov in Oregon (I don’t know where he was born), of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR):

The fact of the matter is that Western European culture, since ancient times, was Christian. For this reason, laws and traditions are based on religion, which until fairly recently did not need to be defended or explained. Since the time of the separation of church and state, the latter is undergoing a gradual de-Christianization, when the remnants of Christian underpinnings and traditions (for example, prayer in schools, Christian symbolism, traditional marriages, etc.) are attacked one after the other through the courts and removed, since there is no foundation for them in a godless society.

Another Russian source I recently read alleged – with some justification, as I thought about it! – that beginning with the French Revolution, the first target of every (small-R) republican regime, after overthrowing a monarchy, has been religion.

Is “separation of church and state” good for either? for society? Obviously it’s not so good for the formerly-established religion! What if what’s established is heresy? Of course, Orthodoxy considers all non-Orthodoxy to be heresy (at best), and wishes to be free to evangelize everywhere. So does everybody else! Is it better for Orthodoxy to exist in a devout but heretical society, than a “militantly secular” one? Should Orthodoxy defend “civil religion,” even when it is predominantly Protestant? Some Orthodox see the alleged secularization of the West together with the growth of Orthodoxy here, and say that after all, we too reject Catholicism and Protestantism. Is Orthodoxy’s task of evangelization easier or harder in a “secularized” society? Many “seculars” feel they’ve heard the Gospel, and rejected it. But I’m under the impression that more converts to Orthodoxy (not by marriage) are from devout heterodox Christianity, than from atheism or other religions.

The Fathers of the Church have never considered non-Orthodoxy to be “undifferentiated darkness.” Some heretics and sects are closer to the Church than others, and perhaps than non-Christians; (continuing) Jews, and possibly Muslims, might be closer than polytheists and atheists. Then there are those born into sects and heresies not by their own choosing. But living in a non-Orthodox society is traditionally considered spiritually tricky for Orthodox. And living among Christian heresies, which can be very tempting, can be even more dangerous. Orthodoxy prefers an Orthodox society and culture, though it’s not necessarily inimical to freedom of conscience therein.

Should Orthodoxy form common cause to defend “religion,” even “Christianity” (or “Judeo-Christianity”), in the First and Second Worlds, or only itself?

Good question, if I do say so myself.

RONA AMBROSE Someone thinks pretty highly of hers…

RONA AMBROSE

Someone thinks pretty highly of herself. Really, a practically life-size photo on her official website?!! It’s offered on the homepage as “Hi-Res Print Ready Photo.” Puh-lease. OK, I heard she was hot. Well, it doesn’t show here. She’s a “Conservative” MP from Alberta – yes, a Harperette. Self-described libertarian; IOW, American-influenced. FYI, she seems to pronounce her first name “Ronna.” Probably to rhyme with Ronald, as in Reagan.

WE HAVE AN ORDER OF PRECEDENCE?! If this is corre…

WE HAVE AN ORDER OF PRECEDENCE?!

If this is correct, it’s laughable! The very idea of an anti-traditional republic having a (civilian) Order of Precedence! And there’s very little rhyme or reason to it, it seems almost randomly put together!

You wanna hear about precedence? Internationally, all Monarchs precede all presidents. So the Reigning Prince of Liechtenstein (no offense) comes before the President of the United States of America! In fact, I believe Roman Catholic Cardinals, as “Princes of the Church” (don’t get me started!), also outrank our Fearless Leader!

Anyway, so, don’t tell me Americans forsake the trappings of Monarchy! Actually, it can seem that the “Founding Fathers” thought themselves ‘princes of the new order’….

ABRAMOFF UPDATE The update is – there is no updat…

ABRAMOFF UPDATE

The update is – there is no update!

Why haven’t we heard any more about the allegedly dozens of Republican members of Congress involved with this sleezeball? Could it be because Republicans control the Justice Department…and there’s an election coming up?!?!?!

Since they won’t tell us, play it safe: Vote out all Republicans!

(Or try, anyway. We know they’ll steal this one, just like ’04, ’02, and ’00.)

FUHRER SIGNS BILL, EXPLICITLY SAYS HE’LL DISOBEY I…

FUHRER SIGNS BILL, EXPLICITLY SAYS HE’LL DISOBEY IT

AOL buried the lede. See the last two paragraphs. But he also does assert the right to lie to Congress in its Executive oversight power. Even a Republican Congress should demand he present his sorry face on Capitol Hill and answer for this – not some peon, but he himself!

How long, O Lord! What did we do to deserve this guy?!!!