Feed on

‘Trust me’

by Susie
A man who wears a gold dress warns priests they should support whatever he says without question.

There were no laws about clerical celibacy until the 12th century, when church officials drew up such restrictions – mostly because they were worried about the legal claims of priests’ bastard children. If the church was wrong before they made those rules, who’s to say they’re not wrong now?

One of my aunts was complaining about women wanting to be priests. “Jesus only picked men to be apostles,” she told me. “Well, Aunt Aggie, if you really want to be accurate, Jesus only picked Jews to be apostles. So maybe you should have to be a Jew to be a priest.” She was speechless.

Aunt Aggie’s dead now, and soon the rest of the people who think like her will be gone, too. So if Benedict wants a smaller, purer church, he’s going to get one.

As predicted

by Susie
There will be a lot of pain in the coal industry, especially on the workers’ side. But breathing is pretty basic, too.

Holy Thursday

by Susie

St. Adelbert’s on Allegheny Avenue.

The local Polish shops were packed today, because tomorrow is Good Friday and a lot of people will be in church instead of shopping. At the Krakus supermarket, located on a busy artery and a bus route, it was even more difficult to find a parking spot than usual. I saw many out-of-state plates from people headed back to the old neighborhood for their traditional holiday treats.

I gave up on getting kielbasa at Krakus because the line was so long. Instead, I bought a cheese babka and some chrusciki (Polish cookies made from scraps of fried dough and covered in powdered sugar). Then I headed over to the Polish butcher near my house, where I got some smoked kielbasa and some potato pierogis. There was a line of people waiting all the way around the store to place orders at the butcher counter, so they weren’t making hoagies today. I was starved, so after I was done, I headed over to the Korean Polish grocery, where they make a very nice hoagie. No lines there, even though they carry a lot of the same Polish food. But at the other store, it’s homemade.

Anyway, I’m done, I’m home and as ready for Easter as I’m going to get.

You’ve got mail — for now

by Odd Man Out
Bernie Sanders is fighting the reactionaries who are trying to put the U.S. Postal Service out of business, but where are Obama and the Democrats?

‘Heroes and Villains’

by Odd Man Out
A reminder of why Paul McCartney was a major fan of Brian Wilson:

Worse than Richard J. Daley?

I’m referring to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, the man who once dismissed progressive critics of “moderate” Democrats as “fucking retards.” Rahm helped put into place major restrictions on protesters in preparing for the G8 summit that was to be held in Chicago, perhaps to recreate the conditions that led to a police riot at the 1968 Democratic Convention. More here.

Define self-interest, please

By Odd Man Out

I remember reading Thomas Frank’s What’s the Matter With Kansas? a few years ago and feeling as perplexed as the author, whose book included a series of brave, convoluted attempts to explain why so many poor people vote for the politicians who are working to ensure they remain poor.

Yesterday, Digby helped shed light on the subject by linking to an interview of Corey Robin, author of The Reactionary Mind: Conservatism from Edmund Burke to Sarah Palin.

Her summary of Robin’s remarks:

They believe that giving up their private power would be far more destructive than giving up political power. Sure, right wing politicians are all liars and cheats and do anything they can to hold on to their public power. That’s the gig. But to the true believers their central concern is losing the privilege that defines them. And it isn’t really about money, although that’s tangentially part of it. It’s about hierarchy, status and dominion.

Gang of 5 stripping away our rights

Worth repeating, from Robert Parry of Consortium News:

Last week, the five Republican partisans who control the U.S. Supreme Court were all about protecting American “liberties” against the threat of compulsory broccoli purchases. This week, they are defending the rights of prison guards to strip search a nun arrested in an anti-war protest or a black guy who got nabbed by mistake for not paying a fine that he had actually paid.

But the Court’s strip-search ruling on Monday was more about the future than the past. One could almost see the GOP Five rubbing their hands together at the prospect of mass strip searches of young men and women arrested for challenging corporate greed in Occupy protests. Perhaps the justices would like to take a page from Rush Limbaugh’s playbook and suggest the videos be posted online so they could watch.

“Every detainee who will be admitted to the general population may be required to undergo a close visual inspection while undressed,” wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy for the Republican majority.

Of course, the justices don’t expect that they and their powerful friends would ever be subjected to such humiliation. That’s more for the lesser beings – or those with lesser money – especially those who find themselves disproportionately tossed into America’s massive prison system: the poor, the minorities and the protesters.

The GOP Five’s 5-4 ruling was so extreme that it even caused the usually solicitous New York Times to note that “the procedures endorsed by the majority are forbidden by statute in at least 10 states and are at odds with the policies of federal authorities. According to a … brief filed by the American Bar Association, international human rights treaties also bar the procedures.”

Every day is going in the wrong direction
The doctor wants to give me more injections

By Odd Man Out

Tense and tight, “Connection” has lyrics that convey the rocker’s familiar lament, that life on the road, especially when you’re famous, will drive you crazy. The Stones sound extra-funky on this one — i.e., focused entirely playing as a unit. I picture them recording in a walk-in closet, elbowing each other. Richards’ guitar is so rude, it honks, and his vocal harmonies with Jagger add a convincing note of desperation.

Bush’s legacy: ‘black sites’

By Odd Man Out

George W. Bush is in semi-seclusion, presumably clearing brush. Dick Cheney has a new heart. But is there any way America can recover from the damage done to its reputation by these odious men and their gang of fellow war criminals? And what about the countries that Bush used to host his CIA-controlled “black sites?” From Juan Cole:

Poland’s Prime Minister Donald Tusk is now more or less admitting what has long been suspected: The Bush administration established a secret CIA prison in Poland and had Polish security officials help torture al-Qaeda suspects there.

These steps were unconstitutional in Poland on two grounds: first, high Polish officials surrendered sovereignty over Polish territory to the US Central Intelligence Agency. Second, torture is forbidden in Poland. In addition, it contravenes European Union conventions and treaties.

Poland had only escaped the grip of the Soviet Union in 1989, and so its democracy was a fledgling one. For the Bush administration to seduce its high officials into committing torture risked permanently marring its politics and undermining that democracy. Polish human rights workers have been deeply critical of Soviet-era torture, and to be put in the position of having to acknowledge this practice in their own country weakens their moral standing and besmirches the name of those tortured in the Stalinist era.

Waterboarding and extreme stress techniques are also illegal in US law and practice.

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »