IT IS HARD TO BELIEVE THAT The New York Times, Founded in 1851, the “Gray Lady” became the journal of the new Republican Party and was destined to become the mouthpiece for the Democrat Party

JANUARY 23, 2019

Infamous Scribblers: Virtue Signalers on the Warpath



From October 22 to November 30, in 1878, a large fair was held in the Cathedral of Saint Patrick in New York City before its dedication. It took advantage of the magnificent open space before pews were installed to the distress of the architect, James Renwick, who objected that Protestant furniture had no place in a Catholic shrine. Renwick was a Protestant himself, but also an aesthetic purist and an Anglican, and no Puritan; however, Archbishop McCloskey needed money and, as with having a fundraising fair, renting pews out was a way to get it.

Six months earlier, and exactly one block north in her huge mansion on the same side of Fifth Avenue, Madame Restell had reclined in her bathtub and slit her throat. She left a fortune of over twelve million dollars in today’s money, after a career as the nation’s most notorious abortionist. Not unfamiliar with prison, her dismal career had been haunted by what we would now call investigative journalists in the employ of The New York Times. Founded in 1851, the “Gray Lady” became the journal of the new Republican Party and helped with the demolition of the corrupt Tweed Ring.

Times change, even for The New York Times, which over more recent years has abandoned its foundational moral rectitude. Although not proud of its whitewashing of the Ukraine famine and Stalin’s show trials by the complicit reporter Walter Duranty, the newspaper has not yet renounced his Pulitzer Prize, nor has it demurred from the praise heaped on it by Fidel Castro when he visited their editorial office in a gesture of thanks for their support. There was also that problem with Jayson Blair’s plagiarism, and the misrepresentation of the young men falsely accused of sexual violence at Duke University. The latter bears some resemblance to the recent incident in our nation’s capital when youths from Covington Catholic High School were accused of racist bullying. But The New York Times has had the decency, along with some others, to regret the haste with which it moved to condemn the innocent.

Unlike Mark Twain who noted that reports of his death were greatly exaggerated, those who now say that journalism is dead may have a good case. Thus one should not expect much from those who report the activities of others and by so doing arrogate to themselves the importance of the actors. Despite the fact that he was a journalist himself, G.K. Chesterton said that writing badly is the definition of journalism.

When hieroglyphics were the best, if static, medium of telling the news in the thirteenth century BC, Rameses the Great advertised himself as the victor of the Battle of Kadesh, although truth-tellers knew that he had lost. The city of Trent spread a “blood libel” against Jews in 1475 that led to a massacre, and not even Pope Sixtus IV could stop it, though he tried.  In 1765, Samuel Adams, whose only worthy legacy is beer, falsely claimed in print that Thomas Hutchinson, a Loyalist, supported the Stamp Tax, with the result that the helpless man’s house was burned to the ground. In 1782, five months after Yorktown, Benjamin Franklin produced a hoax news release during his sojourn in Paris, claiming that King George had induced American Indians to commit atrocities, and he also forged the name of John Paul Jones to another libel. And, of course, Marie Antoinette never said “Let them eat cake” (actually it was “brioche”), but those who wanted to believe it did so. George Washington had enough of journalists, and told Hamilton that he was quitting public life because of “a disinclination to be longer buffitted [sic] in the public prints [sic] by a set of infamous scribblers.”

There is no need to recount the details of the latest incident in our nation’s capital, when the high school boys were defamed by journalists with the accusation that they mocked an elderly Native American who was trying to calm a confrontation with a radical group of anti-white, anti-Semitic racists. Videos proved that there was no truth to this, but a flurry of demagogic “virtue signaling” berated the boys without giving them a chance to testify. In the eyes of the secular media, the lads were at a portentous disadvantage, being white Catholic males, some of whom were wearing MAGA hats. The “Native American” was described as an elderly Vietnam War veteran. But few 64-year-olds today would qualify as geriatric. And in the last year that any US combat units were stationed in Vietnam—1973—he would have been 18 years old. Mr. Phillips, a professional “activist” for the Indigenous Peoples March, also claims to be a marine veteran, which may be the case, but to have been a Marine veteran in Vietnam when the last Marine combat divisions left in 1971, he would have been 16 years old. This information has been ignored in some quarters. Journalists were supposed to expose hoaxes pretending to be facts, but now they prefer to call facts hoaxes. I speak without prejudice; having been born in New Jersey, I can also claim to be an Indigenous Person. Besides that, as a teenager, I was schooled in a college originally established for the education of what used to be called Indians.

This brings up a contiguous complaint. As soon as this incident was reported, The Washington Post, in its role as the intemperate sibling of The New York Times, ran an essay decrying “the shameful exploitation of Native Americans by the Catholic Church.” For secularists, any missionary venture must have been exploitative and destructive of native culture, even though Christian evangelists have thwarted infanticide, human sacrifice, the cremation of widows, polygamy, caste systems and, yes, slavery.  The article in the Post made no mention of the Jesuit Martyrs who endured torture and death to bring the Gospel to dejected tribes and peace to internecine tribal slaughterers. Absent was mention of Saint Kateri Tekakwitha, who was exiled by her own tribe, the Mohawks, for her love of Christ, Saint Junipero Serra who transformed the fortunes of the indigenous “gatherer” culture, Saint Katherine Drexel who donated her vast inheritance to establish fifty missions among the native peoples, the heroic Bishop Martin Marty who brought science and literacy to the Dakota territory, or Father Jean-Pierre DeSmet who fashioned the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868, and so befriended Chief Tatanta Iytake (“Sitting Bull”) that the venerable chief,  impeded from his own reception into the Church by having two wives, wore a crucifix to his dying day and saw to it that Buffalo Bill Cody was baptized the day before he died. Defamation by journalists is unethical in the professional sphere and sinful in the economy of God, but to submit saints to detraction is blasphemous.

The scene of Pope Leo XIII applauding the Wild West Show of Buffalo Bill and Chief Sitting Bull on tour in Rome would probably confound journalists at The Washington Post. Buffalo Bill and his entourage were wined and dined at the North American College there, an event that might have been inaccurately reported by CNN. But these are facts, and Catholics who do not know their history are accountable for letting it be maligned.

The incident with the Covington boys may be more significant than some transient scandal.  One remembers Senator Joseph McCarthy using the media to his advantage, and to this day his foes will not admit that he did indeed expose some real threats to the nation. The young Robert Kennedy was his assistant attorney and McCarthy was godfather to Robert’s first daughter, Kathleen, although he died four years later and obviously had no catechetical influence. But when his actions became extravagant, the Army attorney Joseph Welch asked, “Have you no sense of decency?” Therewith the whole deck of cards collapsed. Perhaps the media are beyond a sense of shame now, wallowing as they are in destructive polemics, but fair-minded people may be moved by this Covington incident to recognize the indecency of political correctness. Such correctness is most demeaning when it cloaks itself in an affected moralism which agnostic subjectivism has otherwise displaced from social discourse.

Our Lord condemned “virtue signaling” in his parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector in the Temple. “I thank you, Lord, that I am not like this sinner.” There are Pharisees in every corridor of society, but they find a most comfortable berth in the Church. So it was that the very diocese of the Covington students, without interviewing them or asking for evidence outside the media, promptly threatened to punish them. There was no reference to the hateful racism and obscene references to priests chanted by the cultic Hebrew Israelites as they threatened those Catholic youths. Instead, bishops issued anodyne jargon about the “dignity of the human person” without respecting the dignity of their own spiritual sons. The latest advertisement of the Gillette razor company portraying examples of “toxic masculinity” did not accuse any bishop, but only ecclesiastical bureaucrats would consider that a compliment. Pope Francis, off-the-cuff and at a high altitude in an airplane, once asked, “Who am I to judge?” There might at last be some application of that malapropism to shepherds who jump to judgment and throw their lambs to the wolves of the morally bankrupt media in a display of virtue signaling and in fear of being politically incorrect.

(Photo credit: Wikicommons)

Tagged as anti-Christian bigotryChurch scandal / corruptionidentity / group politics,media biasThe New York Timesvirtue signaling220

Fr. George W. Rutler

By Fr. George W. Rutler

Fr. George W. Rutler is pastor of St. Michael’s church in New York City. He is the author of many books including Principalities and Powers: Spiritual Combat 1942-1943 (South Bend, IN: St. Augustine’s Press) and Hints of Heaven (Sophia Institute Press). His latest books are He Spoke To Us (Ignatius, 2016); The Stories of Hymns (EWTN Publishing, 2017); and Calm in Chaos (Ignatius, 2018).

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Pope Francis’s Parade of Embarrassing Friendships

Marco Tosatti

Marco Tosatti

January 22, 2019


The least we can say is that the figure of Pope Bergoglio is embarrassing. Perhaps not so much for who he is as a person in himself – but then again… But more so for the people whom he obviously favors, protects, and defends. Or for those who actively contributed to his election.

Let’s begin with this last group. Among them there are Cardinal Danneels, immortalized as the one standing next to the pontiff on the loggia on the night of his election. Danneels covered up a bishop who had abused his own nephew, and a petition from laypeople had in fact requested that he not participate in the Conclave. But Danneels was then invited by the pope to be part of the Synod on the Family. Those who worked to elect Bergoglio also included McCarrick (he said so himself) and Mahony of Los Angeles, who a judicial investigation revealed had covered up dozens of abuser priests and who was ordered to lead a secluded life of prayer by his successor, Archbishop Gomez (who, strangely, was never made a cardinal, perhaps because he did not have any skeletons in his closet and is a member of Opus Dei…). Mahony was supposed to go to an important event last year as a pontifical representative despite the ban on his presence at public events, but a protest of laypeople prevented him. Yet Roger Mahony is scheduled to speak this coming March at the Los Angeles Education Congress – an evident sign of papal favor persisting despite abuse and cover-ups. Then there was – may he rest in peace – Cardinal Murphy O’Connor. He had transferred a serial abuser priest (later found guilty) from one place to another, where he had repeatedly abused. O’Connor was particularly favored by the pope: the pope interrupted Cardinal Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, during the middle of the celebration of Mass and angrily ordered him to close the investigation of Murphy O’Connor for abuse. And then there is Cardinal Errazuriz Ossa in Chile (who covered up the notorious sexual abuser Father Fernando Karadima), and probably we are still forgetting some others.

The past is the past, you will say. However, the problem is that the present, the current mess, appears to be not at all different. Let’s leave aside the case of the Chilean bishop Juan Barros, who was given charge of a diocese despite justified protests and the lies spoken by the pontiff regarding the victims. Let’s look at the case of Bishop Juan José Pineda, right-hand man of Cardinal Oscar Maradiaga of Honduras, forced to resign by a letter from seminarians accusing him of sexually molesting them. Pineda had lived with his one of his lovers in Maradiaga’s villa in Tegucigalpa. Is it possible that the Honduran cardinal, himself the right-hand man and great inspirer of the pope, seeing a handsome young man at breakfast in his house, did not ask, “Who is this?” Monsignor Ricca, whose diplomatic career was swept away by a homosexual scandal, was nominated by the pope as director of the Vatican Bank (IOR). Now we have the case of Bishop Gustavo Zanchetta of Argentina, who was not only taken in at the Vatican after fleeing Argentina, but also had a position created just for him that previously did not exist, as assessor of APSA, the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See, the treasury of the Holy See. This despite the financial scandals that had taken place in his diocese of Oran (to say nothing of the sexual ones). The accusations and suspicions do not even exclude the new Sostituto of the Secretariate of State, Archbishop Edgar Peña Parra of Venezuela, close friend of Pineda (see above) and of Maradiaga.

And then there is case of the United States. The latest news we hear is that Archbishop Kevin Farrell, a man of the McCarrick line, named by the pope as prefect of the Dicastery for the Laity and the Family (in 2016), was investigated by the Dallas Police Department for an accusation of abuse when he was bishop there. Farrell was named vicar general of Washington by McCarrick, and for six years he lived in the same apartment with McCarrick and never noticed any misconduct – or so he says. And the latest news of Cardinal Donald Wuerl, of his cover-up of McCarrick and his unsettling excuses that he “forgot” about the accusation against McCarrick that he himself had sent the nuncio to the United States – oh, really?! – and of the most recent lies he has told. And then there is Cardinal Joseph Tobin with his strange messages sent on Twitter to – he says – his sister. Tobin has declared that he did not investigate the rumors in Newark about McCarrick because he thought they were unbelievable. He was also made a cardinal (by McCarrick), as was Farrell.

Within a framework like this, it appears ridiculous that Cardinal Kasper is speaking of a “plot” against Papa Bergoglio based on charges of abuse. As they say in Rome, you had better throw yourself forward so as not to fall back. Because certainly the list of abuse scandals – especially those regarding Argentina – is not exhaustive. Can anyone explain why, six years after his election, this pope has never – let’s say that again: never – thought of returning to his homeland? Strange, no? What is he afraid of? That other cases of abuse will emerge? Such as that of Father Julio Grassi, condemned to jail, for whom Cardinal Bergoglio prepared two tomes of defense to send to the judges of the appeal process? A fact that he then denied, lying about it on French television? Bergoglio was the spiritual father of Grassi, as he was of Zanchetta, and of others we are not mentioning, all of whom who are Argentines and who had careers within the Church marred by less than exemplary sexual conduct.

And then there is the silence of the pope, which has now lasted since August 26, on McCarrick. The pope was informed by Archbishop Viganò about McCarrick’s malfeasance a few months after his election, but nevertheless, he used McCarrick as his more or less official envoy, and also as his counselor for nominations of bishops and cardinals in the United States (see above). Did he know? And if he knew, why did he choose to use a person so – at the very least – questionable?

The fact that McCarrick may not be an isolated case leads us to think that the pontiff chooses or prefers people who have a past, and at least one skeleton in their closet. Who is more obedient and more faithful than men who are afraid? Is this a pope who governs, not with the Gospel, but rather with dossiers? It is difficult to dispel this suspicion. And Kasper speaks about “plots.” Oh, please!

This article was translated from Italian by Giuseppe Pellegrino. The original can be found at Marco Tosatti’s blog.



++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++AN OPEN LETTER TO THE CARDINALS OF THE HOLY ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH

Recently many educated Catholic observers, including bishops and priests, have decried the confusion in doctrinal statements about faith or morals made from the Apostolic See at Rome and by the putative Bishop of Rome, Pope Francis. Some devout, faithful and thoughtful Catholics have even suggested that he be set aside as a heretic, a dangerous purveyor of error, as recently mentioned in a number of reports. Claiming heresy on the part of a man who is a supposed Pope, charging material error in statements about faith or morals by a putative Roman Pontiff, suggests and presents an intervening prior question about his authenticity in that August office of Successor of Peter as Chief of The Apostles, i.e., was this man the subject of a valid election by an authentic Conclave of The Holy Roman Church?  This is so because each Successor of Saint Peter enjoys the Gift of Infallibility.  So, before one even begins to talk about excommunicating such a prelate, one must logically examine whether this person exhibits the uniformly good and safe fruit of Infallibility.

If he seems repeatedly to engage in material error, that first raises the question of the validity of his election because one expects an authentically-elected Roman Pontiff miraculously and uniformly to be entirely incapable of stating error in matters of faith or morals.  So to what do we look to discern the invalidity of such an election?  His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, within His massive legacy to the Church and to the World, left us with the answer to this question.  The Catholic faithful must look back for an answer to a point from where we have come—to what occurred in and around the Sistine Chapel in March 2013 and how the fruits of those events have generated such widespread concern among those people of magisterial orthodoxy about confusing and, or, erroneous doctrinal statements which emanate from The Holy See.

His Apostolic Constitution (Universi Dominici Gregis) which governed the supposed Conclave in March 2013 contains quite clear and specific language about the invalidating effect of departures from its norms.  For example, Paragraph 76 states:  “Should the election take place in a way other than that prescribed in the present Constitution, or should the conditions laid down here not be observed, the election is for this very reason null and void, without any need for a declaration on the matter; consequently, it confers no right on the one elected.”

From this, many believe that there is probable cause to believe that Monsignor Jorge Mario Bergoglio was never validly elected as the Bishop of Rome and Successor of Saint Peter—he never rightly took over the office of Supreme Pontiff of the Holy Roman Catholic Church and therefore he does not enjoy the charism of Infallibility.  If this is true, then the situation is dire because supposed papal acts may not be valid or such acts are clearly invalid, including supposed appointments to the college of electors itself.

Only valid cardinals can rectify our critical situation through privately (secretly) recognizing the reality of an ongoing interregnum and preparing for an opportunity to put the process aright by obedience to the legislation of His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, in that Apostolic Constitution, Universi Dominici Gregis.  While thousands of the Catholic faithful do understand that only the cardinals who participated in the events of March 2013 within the Sistine Chapel have all the information necessary to evaluate the issue of election validity, there was public evidence sufficient for astute lay faithful to surmise with moral certainty that the March 2013 action by the College was an invalid conclave, an utter nullity.

What makes this understanding of Universi Dominici Gregisparticularly cogent and plausible is the clear Promulgation Clause at the end of this Apostolic Constitution and its usage of the word “scienter” (“knowingly”).  The Papal Constitution Universi Dominici Gregis thus concludes definitively with these words:  “.   .   .   knowingly or unknowingly, in any way contrary to this Constitution.”  (“.   .   .   scienter vel inscienter contra hanc Constitutionem fuerint excogitata.”)  [Note that His Holiness, Pope Paul VI, had a somewhat similar promulgation clause at the end of his corresponding, now abrogated, Apostolic Constitution, Romano Pontifici Eligendo, but his does not use “scienter”, but rather uses “sciens” instead. This similar term of sciens in the earlier abrogated Constitution has an entirely different legal significance than scienter.] This word, “scienter”, is a legal term of art in Roman law, and in canon law, and in Anglo-American common law, and in each system, scienter has substantially the same significance, i.e., “guilty knowledge” or willfully knowing, criminal intent.

Thus, it clearly appears that Pope John Paul II anticipated the possibility of criminal activity in the nature of a sacrilege against a process which He intended to be purely pious, private, sacramental, secret and deeply spiritual, if not miraculous, in its nature. This contextual reality reinforced in the Promulgation Clause, combined with:  (1) the tenor of the whole document; (2) some other provisions of the document, e.g., Paragraph 76; (3) general provisions of canon law relating to interpretation, e.g., Canons 10 & 17; and, (4) the obvious manifest intention of the Legislator, His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, tends to establish beyond a reasonable doubt the legal conclusion that Monsignor Bergoglio was never validly elected Roman Pontiff.

This is so because:1.  Communication of any kind with the outside world, e.g., communication did occur between the inside of the Sistine Chapel and anyone outside, including a television audience, before, during or even immediately after the Conclave;2.   Any political commitment to “a candidate” and any “course of action” planned for The Church or a future pontificate, such as the extensive decade-long “pastoral” plans conceived by the Sankt Gallen hierarchs; and,3.  Any departure from the required procedures of the conclave voting process as prescribed and known by a cardinal to have occurred:each was made an invalidating act, and if scienter (guilty knowledge) was present, also even a crime on the part of any cardinal or other actor, but, whether criminal or not, any such act or conduct violating the norms operated absolutely, definitively and entirely against the validity of all of the supposed Conclave proceedings.

Quite apart from the apparent notorious violations of the prohibition on a cardinal promising his vote, e.g., commitments given and obtained by cardinals associated with the so-called “Sankt Gallen Mafia,” other acts destructive of conclave validity occurred.  Keeping in mind that Pope John Paul II specifically focused Universi Dominici Gregis on “the seclusion and resulting concentration which an act so vital to the whole Church requires of the electors” such that “the electors can more easily dispose themselves to accept the interior movements of the Holy Spirit,” even certain openly public media broadcasting breached this seclusion by electronic broadcasts outlawed by Universi Dominici Gregis.  These prohibitions include direct declarative statements outlawing any use of television before, during or after a conclave in any area associated with the proceedings, e.g.:  “I further confirm, by my apostolic authority, the duty of maintaining the strictest secrecy with regard to everything that directly or indirectly concerns the election process itself.” Viewed in light of this introductory preambulary language of Universi Dominici Gregis and in light of the legislative text itself, even the EWTN camera situated far inside the Sistine Chapel was an immediately obvious non-compliant  act which became an open and notorious invalidating violation by the time when this audio-visual equipment was used to broadcast to the world the preaching after the “Extra Omnes”.  While these blatant public violations of Chapter IV of Universi Dominici Gregis actuate the invalidity and nullity of the proceedings themselves, nonetheless in His great wisdom, the Legislator did not disqualify automatically those cardinals who failed to recognize these particular offenses against sacred secrecy, or even those who, with scienter, having recognized the offenses and having had some power or voice in these matters, failed or refused to act or to object against them:  “Should any infraction whatsoever of this norm occur and be discovered, those responsible should know that they will be subject to grave penalties according to the judgment of the future Pope.”  [Universi Dominici Gregis, ¶55]

No Pope apparently having been produced in March 2013, those otherwise valid cardinals who failed with scienter to act on violations of Chapter IV, on that account alone would nonetheless remain voting members of the College unless and until a new real Pope is elected and adjudges them.  

Thus, those otherwise valid cardinals who may have been compromised by violations of secrecy can still participate validly in the “clean-up of the mess” while addressing any such secrecy violations with an eventual new Pontiff.  In contrast, the automatic excommunication of those who politicized the sacred conclave process, by obtaining illegally, commitments from cardinals to vote for a particular man, or to follow a certain course of action (even long before the vacancy of the Chair of Peter as Vicar of Christ), is established not only by the word, “scienter,” in the final enacting clause, but by a specific exception, in this case, to the general statement of invalidity which therefore reinforces the clarity of intention by Legislator that those who apply the law must interpret the general rule as truly binding.  Derived directly from Roman law, canonical jurisprudence provides this principle for construing or interpreting legislation such as this Constitution, Universi Dominici Gregis.  Expressed in Latin, this canon of interpretation is:   “Exceptio probat regulam in casibus non exceptis.”  (The exception proves the rule in cases not excepted.)  In this case, an exception from invalidity for acts of simony reinforces the binding force of the general principle of nullity in cases of other violations. Therefore, by exclusion from nullity and invalidity legislated in the case of simony: “If — God forbid — in the election of the Roman Pontiff the crime of simony were to be perpetrated, I decree and declare that all those guilty thereof shall incur excommunication latae sententiae.  At the same time I remove the nullity or invalidity of the same simoniacal provision, in order that — as was already established by my Predecessors — the validity of the election of the Roman Pontiff may not for this reason be challenged.”  

His Holiness made an exception for simony. Exceptio probat regulam in casibus non exceptis.  The clear exception from nullity and invalidity for simony proves the general rule that other violations of the sacred process certainly do and did result in the nullity and invalidity of the entire conclave. Comparing what Pope John Paul II wrote in His Constitution on conclaves with the Constitution which His replaced, you can see that, with the exception of simony, invalidity became universal. 

In the corresponding paragraph of what Pope Paul VI wrote, he specifically confined the provision declaring conclave invalidity to three (3) circumstances described in previous paragraphs within His constitution, Romano Pontfici Eligendo.  No such limitation exists in Universi Dominici Gregis.  See the comparison both in English and Latin below:Romano Pontfici Eligendo, 77. Should the election be conducted in a manner different from the three procedures described above (cf. no. 63 ff.) or without the conditions laid down for each of the same, it is for this very reason null and void (cf. no. 62), without the need for any declaration, and gives no right to him who has been thus elected. [Romano Pontfici Eligendo, 77:  “Quodsi electio aliter celebrata fuerit, quam uno e tribus modis, qui supra sunt dicti (cfr. nn. 63 sqq.), aut non servatis condicionibus pro unoquoque illorum praescriptis, electio eo ipso est nulla et invalida (cfr. n. 62) absque ulla declaratione, et ita electo nullum ius tribuit .”] as compared with:Universi Dominici Gregis, 76:  “Should the election take place in a way other than that prescribed in the present Constitution, or should the conditions laid down here not be observed, the election is for this very reason null and void, without any need for a declaration on the matter; consequently, it confers no right on the one elected.”  [Universi Dominici Gregis, 76:  “Quodsi electio aliter celebrata fuerit, quam haec Constitutio statuit, aut non servatis condicionibus pariter hic praescriptis, electio eo ipso est nulla et invalida absque ulla declaratione, ideoque electo nullum ius tribuit.”]Of course, this is not the only feature of the Constitution or aspect of the matter which tends to establish the breadth of invalidity.

 Faithful must hope and pray that only those cardinals whose status as a valid member of the College remains intact will ascertain the identity of each other and move with the utmost charity and discretion in order to effectuate The Divine Will in these matters.  The valid cardinals, then, must act according to that clear, manifest, obvious and unambiguous mind and intention of His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, so evident in Universi Dominici Gregis, a law which finally established binding and self-actuating conditions of validity on the College for any papal conclave, a reality now made so apparent by the bad fruit of doctrinal confusion and plain error. It would seem then that praying and working in a discreet and prudent manner to encourage only those true cardinals inclined to accept a reality of conclave invalidity, would be a most charitable and logical course of action in the light of Universi Dominici Gregis, and out of our high personal regard for the clear and obvious intention of its Legislator, His Holiness, Pope John Paul II.  Even a relatively small number of valid cardinals could act decisively and work to restore a functioning Apostolic See through the declaration of an interregnum government.  The need is clear for the College to convene a General Congregation in order to declare, to administer, and soon to end the Interregnum which has persisted since March 2013. Finally, it is important to understand that the sheer number of putative counterfeit cardinals will eventually, sooner or later, result in a situation in which The Church will have no normal means validly ever again to elect a Vicar of Christ.  After that time, it will become even more difficult, if not humanly impossible, for the College of Cardinals to rectify the current disastrous situation and conduct a proper and valid Conclave such that The Church may once again both have the benefit of a real Supreme Pontiff, and enjoy the great gift of a truly infallible Vicar of Christ.  It seems that some good cardinals know that the conclave was invalid, but really cannot envision what to do about it; we must pray, if it is the Will of God, that they see declaring the invalidity and administering an Interregnum through a new valid conclave is what they must do.  Without such action or without a great miracle, The Church is in a perilous situation.  Once the last validly appointed cardinal reaches age 80, or before that age, dies, the process for electing a real Pope ends with no apparent legal means to replace it. Absent a miracle then, The Church would no longer have an infallible Successor of Peter and Vicar of Christ.  Roman Catholics would be no different that Orthodox Christians. In this regard, all of the true cardinals may wish to consider what Holy Mother Church teaches in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, ¶675, ¶676 and ¶677 about “The Church’s Ultimate Trial”.  But, the fact that “The Church .   .   .  will follow her Lord in his death and Resurrection” does not justify inaction by the good cardinals, even if there are only a minimal number sufficient to carry out Chapter II of Universi Dominici Gregis and operate the Interregnum. This Apostolic Constitution, Universi Dominici Gregis, which was clearly applicable to the acts and conduct of the College of Cardinals in March 2013, is manifestly and obviously among those “invalidating” laws “which expressly establish that an act is null or that a person is effected” as stated in Canon 10 of the 1983 Code of Canon Law.  And, there is nothing remotely “doubtful or obscure” (Canon 17) about this Apostolic Constitution as clearly promulgated by Pope John Paul II.  The tenor of the whole document expressly establishes that the issue of invalidity was always at stake.  This Apostolic Constitution conclusively establishes, through its Promulgation Clause [which makes “anything done (i.e., any act or conduct) by any person  .   .   .   in any way contrary to this Constitution,”] the invalidity of the entire supposed Conclave, rendering it “completely null and void”. So, what happens if a group of Cardinals who undoubtedly did not knowingly and wilfully initiate or intentionally participate in any acts of disobedience against Universi Dominici Gregis were to meet, confer and declare that, pursuant to Universi Dominici Gregis, Monsignor Bergoglio is most certainly not a valid Roman Pontiff.  Like any action on this matter, including the initial finding of invalidity, that would be left to the valid members of the college of cardinals.  They could declare the Chair of Peter vacant and proceed to a new and proper conclave.  They could meet with His Holiness, Benedict XVI, and discern whether His resignation and retirement was made under duress, or based on some mistake or fraud, or otherwise not done in a legally effective manner, which could invalidate that resignation.  Given the demeanor of His Holiness, Benedict XVI, and the tenor of His few public statements since his departure from the Chair of Peter, this recognition of validity in Benedict XVI seems unlikely. In fact, even before a righteous group of good and authentic cardinals might decide on the validity of the March 2013 supposed conclave, they must face what may be an even more complicated discernment and decide which men are most likely not valid cardinals.  If a man was made a cardinal by the supposed Pope who is, in fact, not a Pope (but merely Monsignor Bergoglio), no such man is in reality a true member of the College of Cardinals.  In addition, those men appointed by Pope John Paul II or by Pope Benedict XVI as cardinals, but who openly violated Universi Dominici Gregis by illegal acts or conduct causing the invalidation of the last attempted conclave, would no longer have voting rights in the College of Cardinals either.  (Thus, the actual valid members in the College of Cardinals may be quite smaller in number than those on the current official Vatican list of supposed cardinals.) In any event, the entire problem is above the level of anyone else in Holy Mother Church who is below the rank of Cardinal.  So, we must pray that The Divine Will of The Most Holy Trinity, through the intercession of Our Lady as Mediatrix of All Graces and Saint Michael, Prince of Mercy, very soon rectifies the confusion in Holy Mother Church through action by those valid Cardinals who still comprise an authentic College of Electors.  Only certainly valid Cardinals can address the open and notorious evidence which points to the probable invalidity of the last supposed conclave and only those cardinals can definitively answer the questions posed here.  May only the good Cardinals unite and if they recognize an ongoing Interregnum, albeit dormant, may they end this Interregnum by activating perfectly a functioning Interregnum government of The Holy See and a renewed process for a true Conclave, one which is purely pious, private, sacramental, secret and deeply spiritual.  If we do not have a real Pontiff, then may the good Cardinals, doing their appointed work “in view of the sacredness of the act of election”  “accept the interior movements of the Holy Spirit” and provide Holy Mother Church with a real Vicar of Christ as the Successor of Saint Peter.   May these thoughts comport with the synderetic considerations of those who read them and may their presentation here please both Our Immaculate Virgin Mother, Mary, Queen of the Apostles, and The Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.N. de Plume
Un ami des Papes


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 Just How Many Muslims Won Political Office In 2018? The Numbers May Surprise You!

Many of you are familiar with a couple of congressional seats that were picked up by Muslim women and the first Muslim state attorney general put into office in Minnesota.  What you may not realize is just how many political offices were filled by electing Muslims in 2018.  Note the high percentage of Muslims voting, and their openness to promote the fact that they want to “change” our culture and society.

All of this information comes from the Muslim organization,  JETPAC, which stands for Justice Education Technology Political Advocacy Center.  According to their Mission Statement:QUOTE:“Jetpac (Justice Education Technology Political Advocacy Center) seeks to build a strong American Muslim political infrastructure and increase our community’s influence and engagement.We will take our place at the table across all levels of government.

Our philosophy of change is rooted in a community-based approach, grassroots mobilization, civics training. We have developed our own training curriculum, as well as proprietary social media technology and automation tools, to give our Fellows the skills and resources they need to win elections.” 
Let’s break down the Muslim wins from federal to the local level, and then we’ll sort them by states:
Rashida Tlaib (D)    MI 13th Congressional District    WON
Keith Ellison (D)    MN Attorney General    WON
Ilhan Omar (D)    MN 5th Congressional District    WON
Andre Carson (D)    IN 7th Congressional District    WON

Sheikh Rahman (D)    GA State Senate District 5    WON
Safiya Wazir (D)    NH State House Merrimack 17 District    WON
Robert Jackson (D)    NY State Senate District 31    WON
Nasif Majeed (D)    NC State House District 99    WON
Mujtaba Mohammed (D)    NC State Senate District 38    WON
Mohamud Noor (D)    MN State House District 60B    WON
Jason Dawkins (D)    PA State House District 179    WON
Hodan Hassan (D)    MN State House District 62A    WON
Charles Fall (D)    NY State House District 61    WON
Ako Abdul-Samad (D)    IA State House District 35    WON
Aboul Khan (R)    NH State House Rockingham 20 District    WON
Abdullah Hammoud (D)    MI State House District 15    WON
Abbas Akhil (D)    NM State House District 20    WON

Sam Baydoun (D)    MI Wayne County Commission District 13    WON
Sadia Gul Covert (D)    IL Dupage County Board District 5    WON
Sabina Taj    MD Howard County Board of Education    WON
Mohammad Ramadan    NJ Passaic County Board of Education    WON
Cheryl Sudduth    CA West County Wastewater District Director    WON
Babur Lateef    VA Prince William County School Board    WON
Assad Akhter (D)    NJ Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders    WON
Abdul “Al” Haidous (D)    MI Wayne County Commission District 11    WON

Salman Bhojani    TX Euless City Council Place 6    WON*
Dawn Haynes    NJ Newark Public Schools School Board    WON*
Yasir Khogali    MI City of Plymouth District Library Board    WON
Mohamed Khairullah    NJ Prospect Park Mayor    WON
Mohamed Al-Hamdani    OH Dayton Public Schools Board of Education    WON
Mo Seifeldein    VA Alexandria City Council    WON
Maimona Afzal Berta    CA Franklin-McKinley School Board    WON
Jihan Aiyash    MI Hamtramck Public School Board    WON
Javed Ellahie    CA Monte Sereno City Council    WON
Hazim Yassin    NJ Red Bank City Council    WON
Haseeb Javed    VA Manassas Park City Council    WON
Farrah Khan    CA Irvine City Council    WON
Ali Taj    CA Artesia City Council    WON
Alaa Matari    NJ Prospect Park Borough Council    WON
Alaa “Al” Abdel-Aziz    NJ Paterson City Council Ward 6    WON
Aisha Wahab    CA Hayward City Council    WON
Ahmad Zahra    CA Fullerton City Council District 5    WON
Salim Patel    NJ Passaic City Council    WIN
Sabina Zafar    CA San Ramon City Council    WIN

Shahabuddeen Ally    NYC Civil Court, NY County    WON
Sam Salamey    MI District Courts, District 19    WON
Rabeea Collier    TX District Courts, 113th District    WON
Halim Dhanidina    CA Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Three    WON
George Abdallah Jr.    CA Superior Court of San Joaquin County, Office 12    WON
Adel A. Harb    MI Wayne County Circuit Court    WON

In breaking these down by state, Deplorable Kel formulated a list.

Cheryl Sudduth – West County Wastewater District Director
George Abdallah Jr. – Superior Court of San Joaquin County, Office 12
Halim Dhanidina – Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Three
Maimona Afzal Berta – Franklin-McKinley Board of Education
Javed Ellahie – Monte Sereno City Council
Al Jabbar – Anaheim Union High School District Board of Trustees
Ahmad Zahra – Fullerton City Council District 5
Aisha Wahab – Hayward City Council
Ali Taj – Artesia City Council
Farrah Khan – Irvine City Council
Sabina Zafar – San Ramon City Council

Amira Dajani Fox (R) – State Attorney

Sheikh Rahman (D) – State Senate District 5

Sadia Gul Covert (D) – Dupage County Board District 5

Andre Carson (D) – 7th Congressional District

Ako Abdul-Samad (D) – State House District 35

Sabina Taj – Howard County Board of Education

Rashida Tlaib (D) – 13th Congressional District
Abdullah Hammoud (D) – State House District 15
Abdul “Al” Haidous (D) – Wayne County Commission District 11
Sam Baydoun (D) – Wayne County Commission District 13
Adel A. Harb – Wayne County Circuit Court
Sam Salamey – District Courts, District 19

Ilhan Omar (D) – 5th Congressional District
Keith Ellison (D) – Attorney General
Hodan Hassan (D) – State House District 62A
Mohamud Noor (D) – State House District 60B
Siad Ali (D) – District 3 member of the Minneapolis Board of Education

New Hampshire 
Aboul Khan (R) – State House Rockingham 20 District
Safiya Wazir (D) – State House Merrimack 17 District

New Jersey 
Assad Akhter (D) – Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders
Alaa “Al” Abdel-Aziz – Paterson City Council Ward 6
Mohammad Ramadan – Passaic County Board of Education
Alaa Matari – Prospect Park Borough Council
Dawn Haynes – Newark Public Schools School Board
Hazim Yassin – Red Bank City Council
Mohamed Khairullah – Prospect Park Mayor
Salim Patel – Passaic City Council

New Mexico 
Abbas Akhil (D) – State House District 20

New York
Charles Fall (D) – State House District 61
Robert Jackson (D) – State Senate District 3
Shahabuddeen Ally – NYC Civil Court, NY County

North Carolina 
Mujtaba Mohammed (D) – State Senate District 38
Nasif Majeed (D) – State House District 99

Mohamed Al-Hamdani – Dayton Public Schools Board of Education

Jason Dawkins (D) – State House District 179

Rabeea Collier – District Courts, 113th District
Salman Bhojani – Euless City Council Place 6

Babur Lateef – Prince William County School Board
Haseeb Javed – Manassas Park City Council
Mo Seifeldein – Alexandria City Council

Those judiciary wins are extremely significant considering how judges don’t seem to be concerned about the Constitution anymore and look to foreign law and “precedent” in many of their rulings.

However, numbers from a report by Hamas-CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations) in coordination with JETPAC indicates that a high percentage of Muslims voted in 2018.

The report claims:

95% of Muslim voters participated in this year’s midterm election.• 78% of Muslim voters primarily voted for the Democratic Party candidates and 17% for Republican Party candidates.
• 46% of Muslim voters consider themselves liberal on social issues, while 35% consider themselves conservative.
• 43% of Muslim voters consider themselves fiscally conservative, while 40% consider themselves liberal.
• 26% of Muslim voters who primarily voted for Democratic candidates perceived themselves as being conservative on social issues. Moreover, 36% perceived themselves as being fiscally conservative.
• 68% of Muslim voters thought Islamophobia and anti-Muslim sentiment in the U.S. increased while 17% thought it decreased in the past year.
• 100% of Muslim voters who primarily voted for Democratic Party candidates thought Islamophobia increased in the past year.  (Is it any wonder that, with one exception (state level), they all ran on the Democatic ticket -federal and state levels – in Democrat controlled jurisdictions where they couldn’ t lose!) • 53% of Conversely, only 33% of Muslim voters who primarily voted for Republican Party candidates thought Islamophobia increased in the past year.Muslim voters became more interested in politics since the 2016 presidential election, while 34% maintained the same level of interest in politics and 13% became less interested in politics.• 55% of Muslim voters have become more actively involved in politics and/or civically engaged since the 2016 presidential election, while 45% have not.• Out of those Muslim voters who have become more actively involved in politics and/or civically engaged since 2016 presidential election:
• 20% have primarily donated money to a political or social campaign.
• 25% have primarily donated their time by volunteering with a local charity or civic-minded or religious organization.
• 18% have primarily donated their expertise by using their skills and/or network to advance social/political engagement.
• 37% have primarily been involved in another way.If you don’t think they have an agenda to conform America to Islam, you need to pull your head out of the sand.

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Covington Catholic student involved in incident at Washington, D.C. march releases statement By Briana Rice | January 20, 2019 at 6:50 PM CST – Updated January 21 at 11:24 AM PARK HILLS, KENTUCKY (FOX19) – The student at the center of the viral videos involving Covington Catholic High School students and Native American marchers issued a statement on Sunday night. [ New video shows more of incident involving Kentucky high school students at Indigenous Peoples March ] Nick Sandmann, a junior, is releasing what he calls the factual account in order to “correct misinformation and outright lies being spread about my family and me.” This is the statement in its entirety: Statement of Nick Sandmann, Covington Catholic High School Junior, Regarding Incident at the Lincoln Memorial I am providing this factual account of what happened on Friday afternoon at the Lincoln Memorial to correct misinformation and outright lies being spread about my family and me. I am the student in the video who was confronted by the Native American protestor. I arrived at the Lincoln Memorial at 4:30 p.m. I was told to be there by 5:30 p.m., when our busses were due to leave Washington for the trip back to Kentucky. We had been attending the March for Life rally, and then had split up into small groups to do sightseeing. When we arrived, we noticed four African American protestors who were also on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. I am not sure what they were protesting, and I did not interact with them. I did hear them direct derogatory insults at our school group. The protestors said hateful things. They called us “racists,” “bigots,” “white crackers,” “f*****s,” and “incest kids.” They also taunted an African American student from my school by telling him that we would “harvest his organs.” I have no idea what that insult means, but it was startling to hear. Because we were being loudly attacked and taunted in public, a student in our group asked one of our teacher chaperones for permission to begin our school spirit chants to counter the hateful things that were being shouted at our group. The chants are commonly used at sporting events. They are all positive in nature and sound like what you would hear at any high school. Our chaperone gave us permission to use our school chants. We would not have done that without obtaining permission from the adults in charge of our group. At no time did I hear any student chant anything other than the school spirit chants. I did not witness or hear any students chant “build that wall” or anything hateful or racist at any time. Assertions to the contrary are simply false. Our chants were loud because we wanted to drown out the hateful comments that were being shouted at us by the protestors. After a few minutes of chanting, the Native American protestors, who I hadn’t previously noticed, approached our group. The Native American protestors had drums and were accompanied by at least one person with a camera. The protestor everyone has seen in the video began playing his drum as he waded into the crowd, which parted for him. I did not see anyone try to block his path. He locked eyes with me and approached me, coming within inches of my face. He played his drum the entire time he was in my face. I never interacted with this protestor. I did not speak to him. I did not make any hand gestures or other aggressive moves. To be honest, I was startled and confused as to why he had approached me. We had already been yelled at by another group of protestors, and when the second group approached I was worried that a situation was getting out of control where adults were attempting to provoke teenagers. I believed that by remaining motionless and calm, I was helping to diffuse the situation. I realized everyone had cameras and that perhaps a group of adults was trying to provoke a group of teenagers into a larger conflict. I said a silent prayer that the situation would not get out of hand. During the period of the drumming, a member of the protestor’s entourage began yelling at a fellow student that we “stole our land” and that we should “go back to Europe.” I heard one of my fellow students begin to respond. I motioned to my classmate and tried to get him to stop engaging with the protestor, as I was still in the mindset that we needed to calm down tensions. I never felt like I was blocking the Native American protestor. He did not make any attempt to go around me. It was clear to me that he had singled me out for a confrontation, although I am not sure why. The engagement ended when one of our teachers told me the busses had arrived and it was time to go. I obeyed my teacher and simply walked to the busses. At that moment, I thought I had diffused the situation by remaining calm, and I was thankful nothing physical had occurred. I never understood why either of the two groups of protestors were engaging with us, or exactly what they were protesting at the Lincoln Memorial. We were simply there to meet a bus, not become central players in a media spectacle. This is the first time in my life I’ve ever encountered any sort of public protest, let alone this kind of confrontation or demonstration. I was not intentionally making faces at the protestor. I did smile at one point because I wanted him to know that I was not going to become angry, intimidated or be provoked into a larger confrontation. I am a faithful Christian and practicing Catholic, and I always try to live up to the ideals my faith teaches me – to remain respectful of others, and to take no action that would lead to conflict or violence. I harbor no ill will for this person. I respect this person’s right to protest and engage in free speech activities, and I support his chanting on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial any day of the week. I believe he should re-think his tactics of invading the personal space of others, but that is his choice to make. I am being called every name in the book, including a racist, and I will not stand for this mob-like character assassination of my family’s name. My parents were not on the trip, and I strive to represent my family in a respectful way in all public settings. I have received physical and death threats via social media, as well as hateful insults. One person threatened to harm me at school, and one person claims to live in my neighborhood. My parents are receiving death and professional threats because of the social media mob that has formed over this issue. I love my school, my teachers and my classmates. I work hard to achieve good grades and to participate in several extracurricular activities. I am mortified that so many people have come to believe something that did not happen – that students from my school were chanting or acting in a racist fashion toward African Americans or Native Americans. I did not do that, do not have hateful feelings in my heart, and did not witness any of my classmates doing that. I cannot speak for everyone, only for myself. But I can tell you my experience with Covington Catholic is that students are respectful of all races and cultures. We also support everyone’s right to free speech. I am not going to comment on the words or account of Mr. Phillips, as I don’t know him and would not presume to know what is in his heart or mind. Nor am I going to comment further on the other protestors, as I don’t know their hearts or minds, either. I have read that Mr. Phillips is a veteran of the United States Marines. I thank him for his service and am grateful to anyone who puts on the uniform to defend our nation. If anyone has earned the right to speak freely, it is a U.S. Marine veteran. I can only speak for myself and what I observed and felt at the time. But I would caution everyone passing judgement based on a few seconds of video to watch the longer video clips that are on the internet, as they show a much different story than is being portrayed by people with agendas. I provided this account of events to the Diocese of Covington so they may know exactly what happened, and I stand ready and willing to cooperate with any investigation they are conducting.

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Ted Cruz NAILS IT !!!

WATCH: Ted Cruz Nails It About Why Pelosi Delayed Trump’s State Of The Union Address

Photo by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images 

By HANK BERRIEN January 17, 2019 

On Wednesday, asked about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s stance to postpone President Trump’s State of the Union Address and why she would take that position, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) gave a biting answer that was dead right: Pelosi doesn’t want Trump to directly address the American people because then they will get a different message than the mainstream media will give them.

Pelosi wrote to President Trump on Wednesday, “Sadly, given the security concerns and unless government re-opens this week, I suggest we work together to determine another suitable date after government has re-opened for this address or for you to consider delivering your State of the Union address in writing to the Congress on January 29.” She later told CNN, “This is a housekeeping matter in the Congress of the United States, so we can honor the responsibility of the invitation we extended to the President. He can make it from the Oval Office if he wants.”

The interviewer started with Cruz by commenting, “So we’re seeing some efforts from House Democratic leadership to either postpone or put off the State of the Union address because of the shutdown.” He asked Cruz, “Does it really make any sense whatsoever to try to do that, and do people honestly believe that they are going to silence President Trump or end the partial shutdown by talking away the House chambers cameras from him?”

Cruz responded:

Listen, if you’re Nancy Pelosi it makes a lot of sense. Nancy Pelosi is terrified, number one, of her extreme left-wing base; she is captive of that; and number two, the position of Congressional Democrats in this shutdown is objectively unreasonable. In 2013, Chuck Schumer and every Senate Democrat voted in favor of 350 miles of border wall. They have right now shut the government down to stop 234 miles of border wall. I don’t know how you explain that you voted in favor of 350 miles but you shut the government down to stop 234 miles. That is incoherent.

The honest answer: It’s not a substantive disagreement; it’s that they’re terrified of their extreme left wing, who hates Trump. And that’s why we’re having a shutdown. So why does Nancy Pelosi not want the State of the Union? Because the State of the Union is an enormous platform for the president to speak directly to the American people, and she doesn’t want people focusing on the substance of this issue. She wants their information to come from the mainstream media rather than the president.

Listen, it’s the same reason, You remember, back right before the shutdown, when the president met with Pelosi and Schumer in the Oval Office and it was a remarkable meeting. I thought the funniest and most revealing moment was when Pelosi said multiple times, “Please, can we turn the cameras off? Can we get the reports out of here” She didn’t want people to see then that their position was objectively unreasonable. The president has said he’s willing to compromise; he’s willing to negotiate but we need to secure the border. The president’s right on that. Their position is not defensible so of course she’s trying to hide from the cameras and I don’t think we should let her.

Watch below:

Sen @tedcruz: Pelosi’s #Sotu delay is because she’s terrified of Trump speaking directly to the American people #maga— Matt Batzel (@MattBatzel) January 17, 2019

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   The nineteenth-century churchman John Henry Newman has shaped many of my views and how to apply them. With the credit of a second miracle to his intercession, it is likely that he will be canonized in short order.   

Our culture as a whole is conflicted about the course of events and moral failing in dealing with them, and this is glaringly so in the Church, which is made by God to be a beacon and ballast for all people. Newman reminds us in one of his letters (Vol. XXV, p. 204) not to be surprised by this, as it fits the predictable strategy of the Anti-Christ: “Where you have power, you will have the abuse of power—and the more absolute, the stronger, the more sacred the power, the greater and more certain will be its abuse.”   

For Catholics, present problems are weightier than at any time since the sixteenth century, with its political and theological upheavals. Even the assurance of a stable and centrifugal reference in Rome itself is being tested. It is helpful to recall what Newman said in another of his letters (Vol. XXVII, p. 256): “In the times of Arianism the great men of the Church thought things too bad to last. So did Pope Gregory at the end of the 7th century, St. Romuald in the 11th, afterwards St. Vincent Ferrer, and I think Savonarola—and so on to our time.”   

It would be falsely pious to sweep the scandals of our day under the rug. And it is stunningly evident that, in cases of moral abuse, bureaucratic attempts to buy silence have been a very bad investment.   In the  Historical Sketches, Newman refers to “the endemic perennial fidget which possesses us about giving scandal; facts are omitted in great histories, or glosses are put upon memorable acts, because they are thought not edifying, whereas of all scandals such omissions, such glosses, are the greatest.”   

Present experience attests to what Newman wrote in his book Via Media: “The whole course of Christianity from the first . . . is but one series of troubles and disorders. Every century is like every other, and to those who live in it seems worse than all times before it. The Church is ever ailing . . . Religion seems ever expiring, schisms dominant, the light of truth dim, its adherents scattered. The cause of Christ is ever in its last agony.”   

Scandal is “an attitude or behavior which leads another to do evil” and it “takes on a particular gravity by reason of the authority of those who cause it or the weakness of those who are scandalized” (Catechism of the Catholic Church #2284-2285). Our Lord, who faulted the scribes and Pharisees for giving scandal, is the author and head of the Church, and the good news is that, despite the vicissitudes and dissembling of the Church’s mortal members, His Good News is not “fake news.”

-Father George W. Rutler
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slideshow 5

The Impact That Wiped Out the Dinosaurs 


Paintings and text copyright William K. Hartmann

Web page design by W. K. Hartmann and Daniel C. Berman

What Happened in Brief

According to abundant geological evidence, an asteroid roughly 10 km (6 miles) across hit Earth about 65 million years ago. This impact made a huge explosion and a crater about 180 km (roughly 110 miles) across. Debris from the explosion was thrown into the atmosphere, severely altering the climate, and leading to the extinction of roughly 3/4 of species that existed at that time, including the dinosaurs. Many asteroids of this type are now known; their orbits pass through the inner solar system and cross Earth’s orbit. Some of these could potentially hit Earth in the future. Most, but not all are smaller than the one that hit us 65 million years ago.

Gaps in the Fossil Record

Fossils found in soil layers of different ages show a record of slow, gradual changes in species, with simple organisms gradually being replaced by more complex organisms, apparently by evolutionary processes driven by natural selection. For example, 1000 million years (abbreviate My) ago, the oceans held only simple organisms like algae, while the land was relatively lifeless. Fish fossils appear in strata after about 500-600 My ago; dinosaurs and giant reptiles were on the land by 200 My ago. Mammals were not common until after 65 My ago, and humanlike creatures appeared only in the last 4 My.

[Side comment: The above description has been challenged for two centuries by religious fundamentalists. Fundamentalists are defined as people who believe that the primary way of learning about nature should not be the scientific method, or compilation of evidence tested in different labs in different countries, but rather interpretation of ancient manuscripts, such as the Koran, the Old Testament of the Bible, the New Testament, or other ancient writings. The scientific method was hammered out mainly in the 1600s, when naturalists of that period agreed that information about nature could best be determined by direct observations of nature, and experiments, which would be published openly, in international literature. The key to the method is that assertions published by one scientist can be tested by new, independent observations and measures made by other scientists. Daniel Boorstein’s book, “The Discovers,” gives an excellent overview of how the scientific method was established. This method of learning about nature continues to be under challenge in America from fundamentalist groups, for example in school boards and state legislatures. In 1998, the Arizona state school board recommended that the term “evolution” be dropped from public school curriculum in the state, only to reverse themselves some months later after a public outcry. In 1999 the Kansas sate school board dropped evolution and the Big Being theory of the universe’s origin from the subjects tested in their school system. Several other state school boards subsequently followed in their footsteps. This battle is not new; it is four centuries old!]

Ever since the fossil sequence began being mapped around 1800, geologists noticed that striking “breaks” occurred in the sequence, when one group of fossilized species gave way to other groups during short intervals. Indeed, these breaks were the basis for dividing geologic time into different eras with different names. For example, the Paleozoic era gave way to the Mesozoic era of middle life forms, which in turn gave way to the present Cenozoic era of recent life. Prior to the 1980s, the causes of the breaks were unknown…

How Was the Impact Event Discovered?

In the late 1970s, a team of geochemists headed by Luis Alvarez and his son Walter Alvarez, both with connections to the University of California at Berkeley, was studying chemical changes in soil layers corresponding to breaks in the fossil record. In the soil layer that separates the Mesozoic Era from the Cenozoic Era, dating 65 My ago, they found an excess of the element iridium, which is common in meteorites. Meteorites are believed to be fragments of asteroids. Therefore, the Alvarez team theorized that an asteroid had hit Earth at this time, and that the debris ejected from the explosion were spread in the soil layer. 

For about ten years, this theory was extremely controversial. However, compelling evidence has accumulated to support the theory.

Evidence for the Impact Event

There are now many lines of evidence to prove that a relatively large impact happened 65 My ago.

  1. The iridium excess in the 65 My-old soil layer has been confirmed at many points around the world.
  2. The same soil layer contains grains of quartz that were deformed by high shock pressures, as would occur in a giant explosion. (The deformation is a microscopic structure called “twinning,” in the crystals).
  3. The same soil layer contains enough soot to correspond to burnding down all of the forests of the world. This suggests that massive fires were touched off at the time of impact.
  4. The same soil layer, especially around the Gulf of Mexico, contains massive deposits of tumbled boulders, as would be generated in a large tsunami, or “tidal wave.” The geographic distribution of tsunami deposits suggest the impact was in the Caribbean area.
  5. After a decade of searching, scientists in 1990 identified the crater associated with this material. It is no longer visible on the surface of the Earth, but is buried under sediments. It straddles the coast of Yucatan. It is revealed by mapping the strength of the gravity field over that area, and by drilling; it has been dated to 65 My old.
  6. Astronomers have charted numerous asteroids that cross Earth’s orbit. From studies of orbit statistics, it is estimated that asteroids of 10 km size can hit the earth roughly every 100 My or so — which fits with the idea that we actually did get hit 65 My ago by an object this size. (Smaller hits are much more common).

What Happened During the Impact?

Asteroids hit Earth typically at high speeds of 16 to 32 km/sec (10-20 miles/sec). During the impact, the kinetic energy in the asteroid (or energy of motion) is converted to explosive energy, blowing debris of dust, soil, and rocks not only into the atmosphere, but out into space, where it fell back into the top of the atmosphere. Early calculations in the 1980s (using in part ideas worked out by Carl Sagan and his colleagues) showed that so much dust entered the high atmosphere that the Earth was shrouded in a dust layer that blocked sunlight for several weeks or months. This would have killed some plants, disrupting the food chain.

Later calculations (especially by Jay Melosh at the University of Arizona) indicated that for the first few hours after the impact, rocky debris would have fallen back into the high atmosphere, creating a storm of glowing fireballs in the sky. The radiant energy from these would have heated the surface to boiling temperatures for some minutes, and would have been enough to kill many animals and plants on the surface. However, in regions of heavy rainstorms or snowstorms, these organisms would have survived the first few hours. Sea creatures would have been buffered from effects in the first hours, but plankton on the surface might have died out over the weeks of darkness, decreasing the food supply for small fish, which affected the bigger fish, and so on.

These examples show how hard it is to predict the exact effects of the impact. Many species who lived on the surface (such as dinosaurs) might have been decimated in hour or weeks. Species who lived in burrows, or hibernated (like some mammals) might have survived. This may explain why mammals replaced giant reptiles after the impact. Tiny primitive mammals may have emerged from their dens, to find that their giant reptile competitors were mostly gone.

Were All Breaks in the Evolutionary Record Caused by Asteroid Impacts?

Probably not. The biggest known break is the break between the Paleozoic Eara and the Mesozoic Era, about 230 to 250 My ago, when something like 90% of then-existing species died out. This has been called the “Great Dying,” but has not been explained. So far there is no evidence of an asteroid impact at that time. The second greatest break is the one that we have discussed, 65 My ago, caused by an asteroid impact.

Geologists have divided the eras into shorter intervals called Periods, such as the Jurassic Period, noted for its large dinosaurs. These Periods are also defined by breaks in the fossil record, smaller than the breaks between eras. Many species went extinct during these breaks, but not as many as in the breaks between the Eras. Evidence for impacts, smaller than the one 65 My ago, has been found at some of the breaks, but not at others.

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Steven Ahle


Jose Olegario Lopez, a 44-year-old Mexican national from the state of Sinaloa, was traveling with his son when a police officer tried to pull him over for a traffic violation.

Lopez refused to stop until a contingent of police cars surrounded him and left him unable to move. The police said he had cocaine residue on him and they brought in a drug sniffing dog, who found bundles of drugs individually wrapped. Lopez was arrested, but his son was released to his mother, when they determined he was not part of the drug smuggling operation.

ICE placed a detainer on him and they will take custody when the state is done with him.

From Breitbart News

Officers who initially searched Lopez found he had traces of cocaine on his body, authorities said.

When officers and a K9 conducted an in-depth search of Lopez’s vehicle, they discovered multiple individually wrapped packages. Detectives say they recovered 2.35 pounds of cocaine, worth $106,000, and 16.7 pounds of methamphetamine, with an estimated street value of more than $750,000.

Authorities charged Lopez with two first-degree felony counts of possessing a controlled substance with intent to distribute, one count of failing to respond to obey an officer, and one class A misdemeanor charge of drug paraphernalia possession, according to a press release from the Utah County Sheriff’s Office.U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials confirmed that Lopez is in the U.S. illegally and has been busted for illegally re-entering the country eight times.I guess this just another manufactured crises and that nearly 1 million in drugs just shows that illegal aliens are just like you and me, just trying to make a living. Democrats continue to support drug running because building a wall is immoral and that’s just not where the Democrats are as a party.

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Oxford Union Sponsors Staged Debate

January 16, 2019

Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on the latest game played by the Oxford Union:
Is the Oxford Union committing suicide? It is one thing to lie to me after being disinvited from participating in a debate on February 28, quite another to knife itself by staging a phony debate on the Catholic Church.   
“This House Believes That England Can Never Pay For Its Sins Against Irish Catholics.” Imagine a debate on this subject with representatives of the Irish Republican Army on one side and Sinn Fein (the political arm of the IRA) on the other. This is what the Oxford Union is doing by stacking the deck against the Catholic Church on the motion, “The House Believes The Catholic Church Can Never Pay For Its Sins.”
The three defending the House motion are Mitchell Garabedian, Elizabeth Coppin, and Thomas Reilly.
Garabedian is a good choice. Last year he appeared on WGBH (PBS) in Boston arguing that the Catholic Church should be stripped of its tax-exempt status. In 2011, he was accused by a reporter for the Boston Globe (not exactly a Catholic-friendly source) of maligning the good name of an exonerated priest whom the attorney was hounding. When I called Garabedian to see if he had any regrets about trying to destroy Father Charles Murphy, he went berserk, screaming like a madman. He fits in with this circus like a glove.
I do not know Elizabeth Coppin, but since she is there to give voice to alleged victims of the Magdalene Laundries, perhaps someone from the audience will ask her why the McAleese Report (the official Irish government study) on this institution found that most of the horror stories were pure bunk. For example, there is zero evidence that any woman was sexually abused by the nuns. That’s not my opinion—it is the testimony of women who lived in the laundries, as recorded in the report.
The third person making the case against the Catholic Church is also a splendid choice. He showcased his contempt for separation of church and state when he was the Massachusetts Attorney General: He said he wanted his office to be involved in the recruitment, selection, training, and monitoring of priests.
If a Boston bishop, acting on reports of corruption in the state government, said he wanted the Church to police public officials and their staffs, he would be accused of trampling on the First Amendment. Indeed, he would be called a fascist. Perhaps Reilly can be asked why he never returned a single indictment of a Boston priest in 2003, and why he thinks he was justified in wasting a colossal amount of public funds on a wild-goose chase (he knew the statute of limitations had long run out on miscreant priests).
The side that was selected to defend the Catholic Church is even better. It includes only two persons, one of whom, Dr. Jay R. Feierman, is a former psychiatrist who treated offending priests. Perhaps someone can ask him how he feels about all the glowing reports that the psychiatrists fed the bishops for decades—telling them how they “fixed” these men—knowing now how wrong they were.
The big prize is Marci Hamilton. For the Oxford Union to treat her as a champion of the Catholic Church is analogous to selecting a supporter of the Klan to defend African Americans.
To begin with, Hamilton and Garabedian are one and the same. They have jointly sued the Holy See, unsuccessfully, and have served on the same panels at anti-Catholic conferences for years. She has quite a resume.

  • Hamilton’s career attacking the Catholic Church began when she was sought out by Jeffrey Anderson, the most anti-Catholic, Church-suing lawyer in the U.S. His goal, he once said, is to “sue the s*** out of the Catholic Church.” He has made good on his promise.
  • A few years back, Hamilton teamed up with Anderson to sue the Holy See. They lost.
  • Hamilton is opposed to the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, the seminal bill protecting religious liberty that was overwhelmingly  passed by the Congress and signed into law by President Bill Clinton.
  • Hamilton falsely accused Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, of hiding $55 million from victims when he was the Bishop of Milwaukee. She has never apologized.
  • In 2013, Hamilton said that the Catholic Church’s objections to having Catholic non-profits pay for abortion-inducing drugs in their healthcare plans was proof of its “all-out war on women.”
  • Hamilton always seeks to rescind state laws on the statute of limitations so that she can sue the Catholic Church for decades-old offenses, while at the same time arguing that such legislation should not apply to the public schools. She made this case in her 2008 book, Justice Denied: What America Must Do to Protect Its Children, and worked to implement her ideas in Colorado and other states.
  • In 2016, Hamilton told the press that the U.S. bishops pay my salary. I emailed her on May 5, 2016 calling her a liar. She had no response.
  • When discussing the Muslim terrorists involved in the Danish cartoon issue, Hamilton said, “There is no meaningful difference between the reasoning of imams and the Catholic League on these issues,” thus maliciously claiming the Catholic League engages in, or promotes, violence against its critics.

There we have it. The Oxford Union is in free-fall. It is hosting anti-Catholic bigots to defend the Catholic Church, making a mockery of its once stellar reputation.
If any of these haters would like to debate me, I will arrange it and pay for all the expenses. But I won’t hang by the phone. At least Christopher Hitchens, whom I debated many times, was honest, which is more than I can say for the Oxford Union and its stooges.

Contact Oxford Union president Daniel Wilkinson:

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THE HUMAN PERSON SEXUALITY & FAMILY POLITICS & LAW EDUCATION & CULTURE BUSINESS & ECONOMICS ABORTION Bad (Though Not Entirely Bad) Pro-Life Arguments JANUARY 14, 2019BY FRANCIS J. BECKWITH Good intentions are not enough. Pro-lifers need good arguments too. We should avoid the temptation to make these popular, emotionally compelling, but badly reasoned arguments against abortion. In the Summa Theologica, St. Thomas Aquinas warned his fellow Christians, “For when anyone in the endeavor to prove the faith brings forward reasons which are not cogent, he falls under the ridicule of the unbelievers: since they suppose that we stand upon such reasons, and that we believe on such grounds.” This is true of moral and political arguments just as much as theological and philosophical ones. For those of us who believe in the sanctity of human life and seek to persuade those with whom we disagree, it is essential that the reasons we give actually support our position. Unfortunately, some well-meaning prolife advocates present arguments that are emotionally moving but shift the focus away from the essence of the sanctity of life ethic: it is always, everywhere, morally wrong to intentionally kill an innocent human person. A shift away from that focus not only gives our critics a mistaken impression about the strength of our position, but also misleads them as to what we actually believe about the nature of unborn human life. What follows are descriptions of some of these bad pro-life arguments—and explanations of why pro-lifers shouldn’t make them. The Argument from Killing Beethoven. There are variations on this argument. They are usually in the form of a dialogue, such as this one, quoted by Garrett Hardin: Two physicians are talking shop. “Doctor,” says one, “I’d like your professional opinion. The question is, should the pregnancy have been terminated or not? The father was syphilitic. The mother was tuberculous. They had already had four children: the first was blind, the second died, the third was deaf and dumb, and the fourth was tuberculous. The woman was pregnant for the fifth time. As the attending physician, what would you have done?” “I would have terminated the pregnancy.” “Then you would have murdered Beethoven.” Imagine, however, all the facts about Beethoven’s parents, siblings, and family life were also true of Adolf Hitler’s. Could not a pro-choice advocate then end the dialogue this way?: “As the attending physician, what would you have done?” “I would have terminated the pregnancy.” “Congratulations, you just saved the lives of six million Jews.” For those who defend the sanctity of life, the wrongness of intentionally killing an innocent human person does not depend on whether or not he or she will become a world class composer or a moral monster. Fetus-Ludwig and Fetus-Adolf are equally human and equally innocent, just as an anonymous homeless person, an asylum-seeking immigrant, and Jeff Bezos each possesses the same inviolable right to life. The dignity of each member of the human family is not affected by what we may think he or she is capable of contributing, whether to the country’s gross domestic product or to the world’s cultural riches. That’s why the Beethoven argument is superfluous at best and misleading at worst. The Argument from Gruesome Abortion Procedures Because the aim of an abortion is to terminate pregnancy in a way that ensures that the fetus dies, the woman is not harmed, and all the fetal parts are evacuated from her womb, abortion procedures involve the intentional dismemberment, poisoning, crushing, and/or stabbing of a living human fetus. For this reason, films like The Silent Scream and photographs of aborted fetuses are sometimes effectively used by pro-life groups in their public presentations. Priests for Life, for example, publishes these words on its website above a gallery of pictures that includes aborted fetuses: “The abortion images below show some of the grim reality of abortion. Only seeing such images of abortion can bring us to the kind of indignation needed to sustain the sacrifices that will be necessary to finally bring an end to this injustice.” But how, precisely, does this show that abortion is gravely wrong? After all, if one believes, as most pro-choice advocates do, that any being’s moral status depends on its having a certain level of conscious existence and self-awareness, and a fetus during most of its gestation has not achieved that level, then virtually no abortions are unjust, regardless of how gruesome the photos of their aftermath may appear. Moreover, there are many events and activities that have been photographed that some would find gruesome, though they are not gravely wrong, such as President John F. Kennedy’s autopsy, the bullet-riddled bodies of Nazi soldiers, the gutting of a deer, or the open-heart surgery of an elderly patient. On the other hand, suppose that a new technology allows a physician to instantly dematerialize the fetus like a Star Trek phaser set on kill. Because this new technology is cheap, efficient, and safe for the pregnant woman, no more gruesome abortions are performed. But if you think that abortion is gravely wrong, would this absence of gruesomeness make any difference to that moral judgment? Would it make the fetus any less a member of the human community? It may be that the post-abortion images are being used by pro-life supporters to rebut the claim by some pro-choice advocates that the fetus is merely a “clump of cells” or is not yet an individual human organism. But virtually all sophisticated pro-choice thinkers do not claim any such thing. They recognize the fetus’s humanity, but they deny that it has moral status. They argue, as I noted above, that because the fetus lacks certain presently exercisable powers, e.g., a certain level of conscious existence and self-awareness, it lacks moral status. This distinction has been defended in differing ways by some notable academics, including Ronald Dworkin, Michael Tooley, and Peter Singer, none of whom denies the fetus’ humanity. Of course, many of us have critiqued this position, arguing that the moral status of the fetus does not depend on what it does, but rather on what it is. For if human ability (or achievement) is the sine qua non of an individual’s right to life, then it is difficult to explain why we shouldn’t abandon the idea of human equality, since all our abilities come in degrees at every stage of human development. As the pro-choice philosopher Jeff McMahan writes: “It is hard to avoid the sense that our egalitarian commitments rest on distressingly insecure foundations” if “the properties on which our moral status appears to supervene are all matters of degree.” Nevertheless, one has to make the argument. Gruesome pictures by themselves won’t do. The Argument from Abortion Regret and Emotional Pain Beginning in the late 1990s, certain segments of the pro-life movement started shifting the focus of their opposition to abortion from the wrongness of taking innocent human life to the emotional and psychic injuries that they claim women suffer as a consequence of procuring an abortion. There is, of course, nothing untoward in drawing people’s attention to collateral harms that may flow from elective abortion. But even a pro-choice advocate could concede that point without ever acquiescing to the pro-life view of unborn human life. Emotional and psychic injuries, by themselves, cannot establish the moral quality of the act that one believes caused them. Suppose you enlist in the Army and are sent off to fight in a just war. While in combat, you kill five enemy combatants, and you know you are morally justified in doing so. Nevertheless, when you return home, you begin to regret your enlistment, since you now suffer from depression, post-traumatic stress syndrome, and anxiety. Your therapist attributes these mental struggles directly to the violence in which you engaged while in combat, even though you know that the war and the killing were both just. On the other hand, one’s actions do not become right or good just because one has no regrets about them or emotional pain resulting from them. If a sexual predator shows no remorse for his actions, and in fact thinks of his “successes” as romantic conquests that affirm his self-worth, no one would say that his actions are therefore morally just. By overemphasizing stories of abortion regret, the pro-life advocate sets himself up for the obvious counternarratives by his pro-choice critics. They can simply collect and publicize their own stories of women who either do not regret having an abortion or are pleased that they went through with the procedure, which is precisely what has happened. Advocates of the sanctity of life must take concrete actions to care for the wellbeing of both mother and child. But to tightly tether the pro-life cause to the vicissitudes of the social sciences—implying that the wrongness of abortion depends in some way, however modest, on the bad psychological effects of procuring one—teaches the wrong lesson. A Kernel of Truth Is Not Enough In each of these bad prolife arguments, there is a kernel of truth. The killing Beethoven argument appeals to our deep intuition that a human being’s intrinsic worth does not depend on the condition of her parents or the circumstances of her birth, but it fails to acknowledge that her worth doesn’t depend on the prospects of her future either. The argument from gruesome abortion procedures shows us that the unborn child is a human being, but it cannot by itself show us that abortion is the unjust killing of an innocent human person. The argument from abortion regret and emotional pain may tell us that some women who choose abortion suffer psychological injury, but such consequences cannot tell us whether or not abortion is morally wrong. Because these arguments have a kernel of truth in them, they may very well serve as a catalyst for deeper reflection that leads one to truly see the unborn child as one of us. For that reason, they are not entirely bad. Nevertheless, pro-lifers should remember that these arguments by themselves cannot establish the veracity of our position and principles, no matter how rhetorically powerful they may seem. About the Author FRANCIS J. BECKWITH Francis J. Beckwith is Professor of Philosophy & Church-State Studies, and Associate Director of the Graduate Program in Philosophy, at Baylor University. Among his books are Defending Life: A Moral and Legal Case Against Abortion Choice (2007) and the award-winning Taking Ri..

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