Third Party & Independents Archives

The Pope Loves America

I have been listening to the Pope.
I am not Catholic. I don’t have a church that I belong to.
How many people around the world have actually listened to what he had to say this week?

The Pope.
What does he represent? What do non-Catholics think of him?
Does he have any effect on the conflicts around the world? Should he?
Will his visit effect our Presidential election?

Pope Benedict XVI is calling for Catholics to act like Catholics.
He loves America... the America we were and can be again?
My point? It doesn't matter who you are.... where you come from... your religion or not. The Pope is there to bring people together peacefully. No other religion has a representative like the Pope.

All of us should be able to understand his message and try to live by it.
He loves America.... the America we should be.
What does that mean to a non-Catholic?
I was baptised Russian Orthodox in Buffalo,NY.
Something that happened when I was a baby and had absolutely no say over. We did not go to that church on a regular basis. We were taught that God is in our hearts ...that he is everywhere we go.

I now live in the 'Bible Belt'. Churches on every corner like some places have 7-Elevens.

Where I grew up.... we had neighbors who went to the catholic school. Until we got to junior high we thought, for no good reason, they were better than us. Most generally they were the kids who got in more trouble and ended up in jail.

The difference is mind boggling.
Where I grew up ... if you went to church it was ok.. if you didn't ... it was okay.
I now feel like I have to make my kids go to church or they will be outcasts. I don't like it.
I like the way I was taught... God is in my heart... not in a building where you have to give your last dollar to keep the church going.

The place where I grew up has changed aswell. Those who go to church are looked down on.

What is going on? If it were up to me ... time would have froze somewhere between Martin Luther King and Bill Clinton.

Posted by Dawn at April 20, 2008 1:29 AM
Comments
Comment #251033

The Pope’s words thus far have been encouraging. I personally believe the Catholic Church peddles false doctrine, but with regard to the issues Benedict has raised, he has been spot on. I hope his influence will sway enough people to wake this nation up from its slow drift toward secular humanism. Maybe we’ll be able to keep the reins of this country from slipping into the grasp of Barack Obama and the far left zealots who wish to annihilate faith from all walks of life in this country.

Posted by: Duane-o at April 20, 2008 5:32 AM
Comment #251036

Wow!

Barrack Obama, who from all appearances is a church going man, wants to “annihilate” faith?

Has anybody told him that?

Dawn, I was raised a Catholic. I went to parochial school, and went to church daily through grade school as a result. I also was an altar boy.
When I was in grade school (this was in the late ’50s, early ’60s), I was taught to think for myself, not to accept anything merely on face value, and to not feel that it was important to be part of “the crowd”.
I also attended a parochial high school, and it was there that I began to ask questions that nobody seemed to want to answer. It was at this time that I became less interested in “faith”.
During the late ’60s I came to recognize the “my church is better than your church” syndrome that infects this country. This served to further alienate me from Christianity, and the “mega” churches and the charlatans that run them, pretty much turned me off to Christianity all together.

I, like you, believe that faith/spirituality should be a personal thing. I could care less what/who anyone worships, as long as I am allowed to live my life as I see fit, and that also means not having to wade through endless prostelatizing.

The Pope should be a leader, and an arbitrator, if you will, to bring together the disparate faiths to the one common goal of peace.

That is going to be a difficult task in a “my church is better than your church” world.

Posted by: Rocky at April 20, 2008 10:42 AM
Comment #251038

BTW, I just read a headline about the Pope blessing “ground zero”, and asking God for peace.

Personally I think that peace will come about faster if mankind actually worked toward that end.

Posted by: Rocky at April 20, 2008 11:16 AM
Comment #251041

What is going on? If it were up to me … time would have froze somewhere between Martin Luther King and Bill Clinton.

If you wait until 2015, I hear Calvin Klien and this professor will invent something to help you out.

My favorite religious quote this week came from a member of FLDS, ” Our prophet tells us how to purify ourselves”. Of Course, that prophet is Warren Jeffs convicted child rapist.

It’s almost as hilareous as the Pope talking about morality, as the Vatican did it’s best to avoid it’s own child molestation coming to light.

Got to love these guys, they’re better than Jon Stewart.

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 20, 2008 12:01 PM
Comment #251058

It is easy for cynics to see this person of faith as some sort of Uber-salesmench to the world, not realizing that cynicism is simply an angry lashing out at the hopes that once we lost in anguish. I’m privileged to have a number of former angry-athiest friends, the majority of whom are now Catholics, interestingly enough.

As one of the intellectual leaders of the church this pope is a very interesting study for me. He is a serious thinking man leading a movement (and the Christian church should always see itself as a movement, not an institution) in a Continent to which it is now truly alien. In a sense, regardless of the controversies to which he comes in America, he is more at home here than he is in Europe, and he knows it. We talk about religion, and not just as some quaint curiosity. It really moves us.

It is good that he has come. It is good that he has made the moves to recognize the bond we Christians share with other communities of faith. Most of all it is good to live in a place where the faithful need not accept being demeaned for carrying, as part of their conceptual toolbox, ideas much of the rest of the world seems to have forgotten how to use.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at April 20, 2008 6:59 PM
Comment #251063

No, Dawn, the Pope is there to insure the wealthiest single entity organization in the world retains its wealth and political clout, through diplomacy, bureaucracy, and politics, international and social.

Secondarily, the Pope is there to carry on the tradition of the Church, ministering to those seeking spiritual guidance or hiding and shoveling its failures to minister, in deference to the first priority in the paragraph above. Actions tell the truth when they stand in contradiction to the words.

What CEO in the world would come to America, a source of so much of its wealth, and say they do not LOVE America. Think about it. But, this the same organization that hid, and shuffled child abusers to other parishes to abuse even more children, rather than risk the truth coming out if at all avoidable.

There has never been a time when the Catholic Church was not at odds with own founder’s teachings. If Christ were head of the church, he would, by his own words and deeds, sell the Church’s assets and feed, clothe, and educate the poverty stricken children of the world so that they may create a better future for their children and find redemption as persons of conscience. He would make fisherman of the poor, not capitalists of the clergy, profiting from war and peace.

It is interesting indeed that so many having taken a vow of poverty, yet control such vast wealth and power in the secular world. If I could control trillions of dollars of assets in the account names of others, I too would choose to leave it just so. I would then appear to be what I say I am, a poor servant of the people, rather than what I really am, a master power broker in the social events of the secular world, up to and including political involvement, but in other’s names. The Mafia and Cosa Nostra and the Roman Catholic Church have similar strategies for avoiding being caught at the games they play and the wealth they control.

It is about time the Catholic church parted with some of that wealth in making reparations to the families of the victims at the hands of its priesthood, and the bishops and cardinals who protected not only the perpetrators, but, their continuation as molesters of children of faith.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 20, 2008 8:49 PM
Comment #251071

From today’s Chicago Tribune:

JERUSALEM - Dozens of Greek and Armenian priests and worshippers exchanged blows at one of Christianity’s holiest shrines on Orthodox Palm Sunday, and used palm fronds to pummel police who tried to break up the brawl.

The fight came amid growing rivalry over religious rights at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, built over the site in Jerusalem where tradition says Jesus was buried and resurrected.

It erupted when Armenian clergy kicked out a Greek priest from their midst, pushed him to the ground and kicked him, according to witnesses.

When police intervened, some worshippers hit them with the palm fronds they were holding for the religious holiday. The Eastern Orthodox churches, including the Armenians and Greek Orthodox, follow a different calendar from Western Christians and celebrate Easter next Sunday.

Two Armenian worshippers who attacked the Greek Orthodox clergy were briefly detained by Israeli police. Scores of Armenian supporters then protested outside the police station during the questioning of the two, beating drums and chanting.

The Holy Sepulcher is shared by several Christian denominations according to a centuries-old arrangement known as the “status quo.”

Each denomination jealously guards its share of the basilica, and fights over rights at the church have intensified in recent years, particularly between the Armenians and Greeks.

Father Pakrad, an Armenian priest, said the presence of the Greek priest during the Armenian observances violated the status quo. “Our priests entered the tomb. They kicked the Greek monk out of the Edicule,” he said, referring to the tomb area.

Pakrad accused the Greek Orthodox Christians of trying to step on the Armenians’ rights. “We are the weak ones, persecuted by them for many centuries.”

And so on and so forth into many future centuries.

Posted by: ohrealy at April 20, 2008 10:16 PM
Comment #251106

lol, ohrealy,

Must have been some of those former angry atheists…

Lee,

Uber-salesmench is that church speak for con -artist?

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 21, 2008 4:14 PM
Comment #251114

googlumpugus,
If he is, perhaps I am also. Then again, isn’t everyone on this site (and virtually every other one as well) trying to “sell” something?

Posted by: Lee Jamison at April 21, 2008 6:21 PM
Comment #251115

The problem that the Catholic church now has is being reliant on the secular, diocesan clergy, rather than the regular clergy, people in religious orders. The secular clergy are more like protestant ministers. Those in religious orders, like Cardinal George of Chicago, a member of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, not to be confused with the Oblates of the Virgin Mary, are generally more spiritual. Popes generally come from the secular clergy. Benedict XVI Ratzinger came here to address the UN. He should also meet with the Dalai Lama, who was in Ann Arbor Michigan yesterday. GWBush invited his other holiness to the White House twice.

http://www.dalailama.com/news.htm

Posted by: ohrealy at April 21, 2008 6:27 PM
Comment #251119

The Pope actually said very little this week. He apologized, yes, and so he should. But will he do anything about the priesthood? No. The idea of unmarried priests originated in the Middle Ages as a means of the church avoiding paying for families and widows. It has no basis in scripture. If Benedict really wanted to take a step forward he would allow priests to marry and have normal lives. Then he should allow women priests. What does it matter who delivers the message?

Posted by: Rob at April 21, 2008 6:57 PM
Comment #251131

The Pope did a good job. He obviously has the abilty to move people.

Posted by: Jack at April 21, 2008 9:41 PM
Comment #251151

In the popemobile?

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 22, 2008 12:45 AM
Comment #251152

Rocky, goodlump, and David, some good comments.

I’ve always felt that if Popes really wanted to act like a holy men, they’d give away all the wealth and flashy fripperies, and live like Capuchin Monks.

Just for a laugh: The Rude Pundit on the “Holy Visit.”

Posted by: Veritas Vincit at April 22, 2008 12:54 AM
Comment #251153

Lee,

The first rule of salesmanship, is don’t insult your target, like bitter and angry atheist. They might just think you are an Uber paranoid, insecure, witch burner with a Napoleonic complex. Besides WWJD?

While I’m guessing that you intentionally refered to nihilist Neitche’s Nazi adopted term, Uber Mensch, your tone seems to make the irony a bit too real for comgort.

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 22, 2008 12:58 AM
Comment #251156

or comfort as some might say.

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 22, 2008 1:11 AM
Comment #251171

googlumpugus,
While I’m guessing that you intentionally refered to nihilist Neitche’s Nazi adopted term, Uber Mensch, your tone seems to make the irony a bit too real for comfort.

The fact that Nazis would borrow the credibility of Neitche to put a patina of gravitas on their own sorry efforts does not mean that when I use him to poke fun at athiests I am trying to play Nazi. It does, however, play to the unavoidability of religious-like thought in human beings. This is a sort of forest-and-trees subject where people think that, because they avoid what they have identified as the weaknesses of “religion”, they are not being religious (but they are).

Truth is, there is an awful burden of orthodoxy even in the expressions of “free” thinkers, but since they don’t recognize the influence of an orthodox culture on their train of thought they are “free” to think themselves free to think.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at April 22, 2008 9:06 AM
Comment #251212

Lee,

Of course, there is orthodoxy in most of us. That is my point. Worship whether it be of man, institution, or conjured up deities elevates believers above the rest of us poor mortal slobs. It relieves them of the task of constantly seeing our own foibles, in my opinion. The believers are safely tucked in the womb of knowing they have found truth. Those of us not so safely esconced continue struggling, in bitter, unhappy ways, of course, because we’re doomed. Call me a cynic—-because I am.

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 22, 2008 5:15 PM
Comment #251214

“I’ve always felt that if Popes really wanted to act like a holy men, they’d give away all the wealth and flashy fripperies, and live like Capuchin Monks”

Does that mean that if liberals really wanted to help the poor, they’d give away more of their own wealth and foamy fraps, and live a more modest life in order to help those they “say” they care about?

Naw, of course not. What was I thinking. It’s easier to just use govt and take it from everybody else.

Posted by: kctim at April 22, 2008 5:44 PM
Comment #251233

kctim:

Does that mean that if liberals really wanted to help the poor, they’d give away more of their own wealth and foamy fraps, and live a more modest life in order to help those they “say” they care about?

No, but then, we don’t claim to be Holy, or make bogus vows of poverty.
Instead, we’d rather be more like Robinhood.
We’re going to take some of the money that rich have been stealing from the middle class, take a little of it back for ourselves, and give the rest of it to the poor.
If we do, maybe the rich will be forced to get off their own lazy asses and go get their own foamy fraps, rather than simply order their butlers to serve it to them.

Posted by: Veritas Vincit at April 23, 2008 12:02 AM
Comment #251250

vv,
Nonsense. Liberals are all about being morally superior, hence your claim to be taking from those who have “stolen” from the middle class. It is out of appeals exactly like that that Comrade Obama brazenly ignores the fact that raising capital gains taxes REDUCES REVENUES so that he can say that raising those taxes will increase “fairness” in taxation (even though doing so will, without any doubt whatsoever, increase the burden of federal taxation that really falls on the middle class.)

His is, as such policies usually are, an appeal to ignorance in the hopes that his constituencies are either too ill-informed or too bitter to look history in the eye for guidance in developing good fiscal policy.

Funny, that, another way for someone to look good while stealing from the middle class!

Posted by: Lee Jamison at April 23, 2008 9:35 AM
Comment #251263

EXPERTS AGREE THAT CAPITAL GAINS TAX CUTS LOSE REVENUE

Posted by: Veritas Vincit at April 23, 2008 11:57 AM
Comment #251265

Kctim,

Does that mean that if liberals really wanted to help the poor, they’d give away more of their own wealth and foamy fraps, and live a more modest life in order to help those they “say” they care about?

How about rich conservatives, I mean they are always telling us how they provide us with jobs and bootstraps, couldn’t they provide more and better jobs by taking a fair share rather than all the cream? Perhaps they wouldn’t have to be heavily publicized as philanthropists, then, handing out dimes like old John D during his public image makeover.

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 23, 2008 12:51 PM
Comment #251266

“Liberals are all about being morally superior, hence your claim to be taking from those who have “stolen” from the middle class.”

With ridiculous comments like this one you lose much credibility Lee, you need to take those red lenses you seem to be using as reality filters off of your glasses, it has been the cons and the far right fundementalist beating everyone with the moral superiority stick the past 3 decades.

“It is out of appeals exactly like that that Comrade Obama brazenly ignores the fact “

Really Lee Comrade, Comrade Obama? You can do better than this petty untrue name calling cant you, afterall the Pope loves Obama to, right? :)

Posted by: j2t2 at April 23, 2008 12:57 PM
Comment #251273

On cappucinos and frappacinos, this was one of the most important developments in history. People drinking coffee, tea, and chocolate woke up out of the drunken stupor of earlier societies, at least for part of the day, anyway.

Worldwide trade was required to get these products from Asia, Africa, and America, and land in Europe was freed from growing crops used in making alcoholic products, to produce surpluses in food, which helped create the age in which it became possible for our nation to be formed.

Posted by: ohrealy at April 23, 2008 2:11 PM
Comment #251277
it has been the cons and the far right fundementalist beating everyone with the moral superiority stick the past 3 decades

Um, this is one of those areas where the left and right are about equal in, where there is little real difference, only in the details of what they are being morally superior about.

Posted by: Rhinehold at April 23, 2008 2:58 PM
Comment #251278

Googlumpugus
“couldn’t they provide more and better jobs by taking a fair share rather than all the cream?”

I don’t know, but then again, I am not the kind of person who believes it is my duty or business, to tell another person what their “fair share” is.

VV
“No, but then, we don’t claim to be Holy, or make bogus vows of poverty.”

No, but you do claim to care about the poor, but instead of doing everything you can to help them, you would rather use govt and force others to do it for you.

“Instead, we’d rather be more like Robinhood.”

Whose actions were still criminial, or in our case, unconstitutional.

“We’re going to take some of the money that rich have been stealing from the middle class, take a little of it back for ourselves, and give the rest of it to the poor.”

Yes, I know, I have witnessed that plan in action and can only say, great job on creating those millions of people now dependent on govt.
The mere fact that you believe other peoples property is yours for the taking speaks volumes.

“If we do, maybe the rich will be forced to get off their own lazy asses and go get their own foamy fraps, rather than simply order their butlers to serve it to them.”

Thats funny. Goo just said the rich should provide more jobs and here you are saying they should fire people and just do the things themselves.

How about if we just make everything govt owned, everybody works for the govt and everybody gets the same $100 weekly paycheck, less taxes of course.
That would take care of the evil rich people.

Posted by: kctim at April 23, 2008 3:07 PM
Comment #251279

Rhinehold,
You’ve hit the nail on the head.

We all look at what we think is the best way to be morally superior and, yes, j2t2, occasionally express them in ways that are over the top. We all think we’re doing a better job of seeing the big picture than the other guy. (What, really though, is the problem with sniping just a little at the senator who, by everybody’s measure has the most liberal voting record in the Senate?)

I think, for instance, that VV’s source is just plain wrong, not just because cap gains revenues have stayed strong at the lower rate they’ve been at for several years now, but because years ago they stayed stronger at the Clinton Administration’s lower but not as much lower rate than they had been at the previous much higher rate. If they were going to start falling off to produce lower returns don’t you think they would have done so after more than a decade? Today’s article from the same people really kicks it for me. Sure my INCOME TAX rate is below 18%, but my total tax rate (SS, Medicare, etc.), especially including state taxes sure as heck isn’t! Don’t tell me the middle class doesn’t suffer at the hands of the Federal government.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at April 23, 2008 3:22 PM
Comment #251284

Kctim,

So I see you care when “liberals” talk about solutions, other than that, you just plain don’t give a ……. In other words, I got mine, screw you.

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 23, 2008 4:08 PM
Comment #251286

Goog
Actually, I only care when people use govt to force their “solutions” onto everybody else, instead of doing all they can to support it themselves.

“you just plain don’t give a ……. In other words, I got mine, screw you”

Ah, but I do give a damn Goog, I just don’t believe its right for govt to force others to do what I think should be done, I do all I can myself.

In other words, I work for mine, you should too.

Posted by: kctim at April 23, 2008 4:53 PM
Comment #251290

Lee:

I think, for instance, that VV’s source is just plain wrong,

My link cited findings from the Congressional Budget Office, the Joint Committee on Taxation, the Congressional Research Service, The Bush Administration Treasury Department, a study by Federal Reserve economists, and Leonard Burman, one of the nation’s leading tax experts who is the director of the The Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center. And according to you, they’re all just plain wrong?

Posted by: Veritas Vincit at April 23, 2008 5:38 PM
Comment #251291

Okay, from the Pope to Robin Hood to frappacinos.
Robin Hood was a fertility figure, a successor of the Green Man. Why is our money green? Robin Hood and Maid Marian were eventually supplanted by Romeo and Juliet. Romeo represents life and Juliet death.

Romeo:
Act I, scene 4
my mind misgives
Some consequence yet hanging in the stars
Shall bitterly begin his fearful date
With this night’s revels and expire the term
Of a despised life closed in my breast
By some vile forfeit of untimely death

Juliet:
act 3 III, scene 5
O God, I have an ill-divining soul!
Methinks I see thee, now thou art below,
As one dead in the bottom of a tomb.

Posted by: ohrealy at April 23, 2008 5:41 PM
Comment #251296

The church has yet to discover that actions speak louder than words…the way they treat lay employees is sinful!

Posted by: Rachel at April 23, 2008 6:01 PM
Comment #251298

vv,
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about an article on religious thought. Your comments to me based on trusted sources is a great example. Orthodoxy, as in the Earth-centered universe based on the many many experts of the times, trumps experience and the fruits of observation and experiment.

Yes. I think they’re wrong.

By the way, you’re missing a great opportunity to take a liberal slant on this. It is clear that one of the reasons for the continued strength of the revenues is the rash of speculation launched in the wake of the reduction in the cost of having gains to capitalize on. In light of the market stumble in part built on that speculation isn’t it worth asking if those costs should be increased to ad stability to the market?

Don’t let your religious-like thoughts get in the way of clear thinking. (Even in a conversation originating with the Pope.)

Posted by: Lee Jamison at April 23, 2008 6:29 PM
Comment #251299

The Pursuit of God
by A.W. Tozer, 1948

Every age has its own characteristics. Right now we are in an age of religious complexity. The simplicity which is in Christ is rarely found among us. In its stead are programs, methods, organizations and a world of nervous activities which occupy time and attention but can never satisfy the longing of the heart. The shallowness of our inner experience, the hollowness of our worship, and that servile imitation of the world which marks our promotional methods all testify that we, in this day, know God only imperfectly, and the peace of God scarcely at all. If we would find God amid all the religious externals we must first determine to find Him, and then proceed in the way of simplicity.

http://manybooks.net/pages/tozera2514125141-8/9.html

Posted by: ohrealy at April 23, 2008 7:32 PM
Comment #251319

ohrealy,
In the post above about religious-like thinking one of the things I mean to get at is how we run afoul of the very mechanisms by which cognition is organized. Religion is an image, an IDOL, if you will, of how the universe we perceive is organized. It, and all other images of the world by which humans operate, are functional models we keep within our brains for predicting the way the universe functions.

Once people have developed such a cognitive model they will be very jealous of it. It is, after all, the existence they think they know and the model in which they have invested and hope will be able to provide them with what they will define as success.

My insights from a career in art and from having attempted to teach people how to draw and paint, flying in the face of a word-oriented kind of cognition, have helped me to see outlines of these models at work. The fact of the matter is that all human cognition is founded in the capacity to construct cognitive models. What is terrbly difficult for us is seeing how these models are not “real”, but are representations of reality accessible to the computing capacity of our brains. As representations they are, like Genesis’s description of Mankind, images of God (or truth, or reality, or good government).

I say a lot of things tounge-in-cheek in these conversations in part because I know I can’t see the whole picture. I am a religious thinker, not because I am especially religious, but because I am human.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at April 24, 2008 9:18 AM
Comment #251334

I am usually sarcastic in much of what I write, which seems unrelentingly negative to some people. On A.W. Tozer, his last church in Toronto is apparently now a Hare Krishna Temple. I have been trying to find out if there is a relationship between him and a former neighbor of mine. This neighbor’s son died about 6 months ago. The father and son were both Presbyterian ministers, but A W was CMA, Christian Missionary Alliance at a church in Chicago at one time. The surname just might be more common than I thought.

http://www.wams.org/pages/jtozer.htm

Posted by: ohrealy at April 24, 2008 11:14 AM
Comment #251588

Kctim,
Ah, but I do give a damn Goog, I just don’t believe its right for govt to force others to do what I think should be done, I do all I can myself.

In other words, I work for mine (and got it), you should too. (I don’t mind judging your success, I just don’t want to share mine with those who are less fortunate, crippled, debiltated, discriminated against, battered or beaten, ipso facto, screw you. So what if some got theirs by theivery, deception, corruption, and manipulation., All’s fair in love, war and economics.) Never mind that fortunes are made arming warring factions killing innocents, or forming cartels to make diamonds precious, or financing Nazi’s. Never mind I make mine sucking up to those types. Never mind millions are made by defrauding investors in phony packaged credit that becomes a raid of the treasury. Never mind. It all works out— the poor, starving and dying get their just rewards. I give my tithe. My church dishes out meals at the soup kitchen. It helps a couple of local ne’er do wells. I don’t have to see a bigger picture. I’m busy with my job. If everyone else was, it’s all be OK. I don’t have to think beyond my environs.

IS that what you mean?

Posted by: googlumpugus at April 28, 2008 3:11 AM
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