Thursday, May 31, 2007

ZenTiger Car Smoking and ASBOs

Well, it had to happen. The workplace, restaurants, pubs. And now cars.

South Australia has banned anyone lighting up in their car while carrying children as passengers. It will attract a $75 on-the-spot fine, with increasing fines for repeat offenders.

Is this draconian? Well, given that children can't provide informed consent to risk their health...the government can do anything as long as they think of the children.

And if the offense doesn't relate to members of your immediate family...then an ASBO should do the trick. I heard Helen Clark discussing banning gang patches (something I'm not in favour of for various reasons) and she mentioned Annette King was off in the UK learning up about Anti-Social Behaviour Orders - ASBOs - as the solution to the problem. Why can't we just have clear cut laws that are enforced and applied, and take into account repeat offenses, without having to resort to these bureaucratic parlour tricks that do little to solve the problem, and have such potential for abuse?

Just when I thought Labour couldn't make things any worse.

Related Link: Car Smoking

Update: Idiot/Savant has a good summary on ASBOs.

Fletch If not Christian, then What?

After all this talk about us being a Christian country or not, I thought I'd start with printing below the Ten Commandments.

  1. You shall have no other Gods but me.
  2. You shall not make for yourself any idol, nor bow down to it or worship it.
  3. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God.
  4. You shall remember and keep the Sabbath day holy.
  5. Respect your father and mother.
  6. You must not kill.
  7. You must not commit adultery.
  8. You must not steal.
  9. You must not give false evidence against your neighbour.
  10. You must not be envious of your neighbour's goods. You shall not be envious of his house nor his wife, nor anything that belongs to your neighbour.
Perhaps some haven't seen these for a while (and some may not have seen them at all!). These are the laws, or the Ten Commandments that God gave to Moses in the Bible (Exodus 20)- the rules that his people should follow. They are also the laws that we as a Christian country, and other Christian countries, base our laws on or used to anyway.

Let's see, how many of these commandments have our lawmakers deigned to change? 'Do not Kill' for one. Babies are killed in the womb every day in this country and many others. 'Do not steal'? Helen's pledge card comes to mind.. And that's only the tip of the iceberg.

Yesterday I read some of the comments made by Herald readers criticizing Brian Tamaki for his statement; some of the readers said things like, 'oh but what about the Maori gods? They were here first', and a Michelle B wrote
'Frankly, if NZ is declared to be a 'Christian Nation', where our laws/legal system, and discussions on rights are all based strictly on Christian principles (as in adherence to the Bible), then this is not a place I want to live. '
Guess what, Michelle? Our laws/legal system is already based on those principles. I'd challenge any non-Christian or atheist (even were they to disregard
the first four laws which talk about honoring God) to point out where our law should deviate from these commandments.

Yes, the Maori were here first with their gods and laws, but I hardly think we would like to go back to eating each other or to return to the child sacrifice rituals of the Mayans and other cultures.

If we don't have these immutable laws, then all we have is the opinion of those who rule us to create the rules we should live by, based on their personal thoughts and interests, and we all know what their opinions are worth today (witness the smacking, prostitution, and civil union laws among others).

ZenTiger The Thursday DomPost

A quick scan of today's rag and what do I see?

The Wellington District Licensing Agency has written to schools to tell them that pubs are off limits for the school ball, but students can always try strip joints and lap dancing venues such as Mermaids. And knowing the way the current liberal government works, it will be seen as a real opportunity for our young women to gain valuable work experience (have they added pole dancing to NCEA yet? "Could try harder; Will go far, perhaps all the way"). If it's legal, it must be OK.

And speaking of pole dancing, the world section carries the story of a young female pole vaulter, who was photographed by an ardent fan while she did her thing. The photos have been circulated around the internet generating the interest of men and boys everywhere, as they have downloaded the snaps to ogle and leer at her image in the privacy of their own fantasies. The DomPost of course, sees fit to print two full colour photos of the young lady, even as they try to explain how uncomfortable that makes her feel. There's no such thing as irony to a newspaper.

Which is why they are also covering the story of the young boy who was beaten up as part of a You-Tube video stunt. He's requested name suppression, worried that the media will only hound him for a story. (No way - you think they would?) Seems he is feeling extremely humiliated that not only was he beaten up, but that his image was loaded on to the net for all and sundry to be entertained. Ah, if only those kids had an android to beat up, film and publish [related story]; then it wouldn't have come to this.

The front page of course, speaks of the tragic case of a mother of four who died Tuesday, hours after her electricity was cut off. There appears to be more speculation than fact at the moment, so I'll leave the family to grieve in what little peace I can offer. But I'm not impressed with all of the groups coming out pushing their agenda ("end capitalism" says the Alliance Party - No doubt they'll run on a political platform of "Power for the People"). Geez guys, wait for the report before printing your NWO brochures. My thoughts go to her family.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Lucia My favourite prayer

This prayer is from the 14th century and is typically said after receiving Communion.

Anima Christi (Soul of Christ)

Soul of Christ, sanctify me
Body of Christ, save me
Blood of Christ, inebriate me
Water from the side of Christ, wash me
Passion of Christ, strengthen me
O good Jesus, hear me
Within Your wounds hide me
Let me never be separated from You
From the evil one protect me
At the hour of my death call me
And bid me come to You
That with Your saints I may praise You
Forever and ever
Amen

Anima Christi, sanctifica me.
Corpus Christi, salve me.
Sanguis Christi, inebria me.
Aqua lateris Christi, lava me.
Passio Christi, conforta me.
O bone Iesu, exaudi me.
Intra tua vulnera absconde me.
Ne permittas me separari a te.
Ab hoste maligno defende me.
In hora mortis meae voca me.
Et iube me venire ad te,
ut cum Sanctis tuis laudem te
in saecula saeculorum. Amen.


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

ZenTiger Canadians appoint their own Pope

The cousin of the neighbours of some-one who once went to school with some-one who was baptised a Catholic, today appointed several new bishops, deacons, priests and alter boys. In a bold move, they appointed women, a married man, and a cat called Russell. After a moment of deep prayer and reflection they held a secret ceremony and also appointed a new Prime Minister of Canada, and replaced Robert Mugabe with a spare Mufti they had lying around from a previous conversion.

Related Link: Canadians promote new fantasy role play game

ZenTiger Bollard caught in foul tackle

"Housing is the only thing Dr Bollard can hammer, writes James Weir in todays DomPost. "He would like to hammer dairy cows, and the government [spending], but the housing market is the only thing he can tackle."

Tackle? Grab around the neck, kick in the balls and stomp on the face more like, with the prediction of two more rate rises in the next few months. His tackle style is not very sporting, and as it happens, he's tackling the man without the ball.

This game needs a referee.

ZenTiger Trust me, I'm number 58

Prime Minister Helen Clark ranks 58, one below Ian Wishart on the "most trusted" list. Perhaps that's why I treat a press release from Helen about an article from Investigate as far less credible.

And in a display of the kind of logic that make the liberal lap-dog subcategory of newspaper reporters the least respected profession, reporter Hank Schouten says more parents preferred their kids to go into the sex industry than drive a bus or a cab. This was because bus drivers featured on the "least favoured" career by parents for their children, and sex workers were listed as "least trusted". The fool.

NZ's most trusted survey?

ZenTiger Betrayal

The betrayal is complete: "Spy a former security guard" blazes the front page headline in this mornings DomPost.
A student who admits that he spied on anti-mining activists is a former Wellington Security Guard. .. But Mr Paterson-Rouse is a former security guard -- a revelation that has left his former friends and environmental protesters feeling "betrayed, angry, appalled and sickened"

Quelle horreur! A former security guard! This is too much. As a student, there was always the chance he'd graduate a communist and thus was redeemable. But a security guard?! This spy is nothing but a fascist bully boy. Oh the pain!



Spokeswomen Mountier said they would demand to know what information he supplied and why. Does she really have no idea? I can see it now:

"Did you tell them about our plan to chain ourselves to the railway track thus endangering lives and delaying the train for three hours?

"Did you raise the alarm when two of our team went missing in the blizzard conditions?"

"Did you let on we knew there were thousands of snails lurking in the bush, but forced Solid Energy to spend millions of dollars moving the 'last' 500 snails in the world?"

"Have you revealed our plans to use disruptive and illegal tactics at any time in the future?"

"Err, no. I thought the plan was to out myself as a spy, thus causing irreparable harm to Solid Energy, as any good double-agent is meant to do?"

"You fool, that was supposed to be a secret".


Well, there you go. Never trust a security guard.

Monday, May 28, 2007

ZenTiger Which Supervillain are you?

Well, from the list available, Dr Victor Von Doom from Latveria was my favourite villain, but they have missed a lot of other good villains - from Darkseid and Elektra to Sabretooth and Kang the Conqueror.

And who could fail to reflect upon the subterfuge of the kralc neleh?

You are Dr. Doom

Blessed with smarts and power but burdened by vanity.



Dr. Doom
72%
Lex Luthor
69%
Apocalypse
64%
Dark Phoenix
62%
The Joker
62%
Venom
60%
Green Goblin
59%
Magneto
58%
Juggernaut
55%
Kingpin
53%
Mr. Freeze
44%
Riddler
43%
Two-Face
31%
Catwoman
30%
Mystique
27%
Poison Ivy
27%

Click here to take the "Which Super Villain am I?" quiz...

Hattip: G-Man (Lex Luthor)

Fletch It's Started Already

Yes, according to the news just now, Labour are already hinting at "tax threshold tweaks" ahead of next years election. Peter Dunne has had a chat with Cullen, who has said he has an agenda for personal tax cuts next year. No surprises there, of course - we all knew there would be a bribe next year.

Peter Dunne says he doesn't have any specific numbers in mind but -

"..when you have 12 percent of people caught by the top rate, when you are only supposed to have five percent, there is significant room for movement."

Of course, it didn't matter before when they were raking in the money hand-over-fist but it's an issue now that election year is fast approaching.

ZenTiger Spying is OK says Ruth Dyson

[Satire On] Government Minister Ruth Dyson has come out fighting hard for Solid Energy's right to spy. "As Minister of ACC, Ruth Dyson has signed off on over 2 million dollars worth of spying to track down bludgers" said an email sent anonymously to NZ Conservative from Ruth's office.

Speculation mounts as to whether Cindy Kiro, the Children's Commissioner, will be keen to engage spies to fill out the "Every Child is on our database" plan that will track the life of every kiwi child.

Is this simply a case of "If people have nothing to hide, then they needn't worry about spies?" They are our government, so we can trust them, surely? [/Satire Off]

Related Link: The Enemy Within - Nicky Hager

Related Link: Accidental Spying - ACC spend 2 million

Related Link: Cindy Kiro wants to track every child

ZenTiger Driving people to drink-driving

Human Rights organisations are outraged that Police have requested the power to pull motorists to the side of the road and breath test them.

Ahmed Versi, editor of G&T News, a newspaper for British Alcoholics, said that extending police powers would be "counter-productive" in the effort to improve relations with motorists and could drive some towards drink-driving if stopped in this manner.


But that's not the only way to recruit terrorists:

"Guantanamo Bay, which was an international abuse of human rights, acted as a recruiting sergeant for dissidents and alienated Muslims and alienated many other people across the world."

On the plus side, 80% of the world's terrorists are now on their way to North Korea, now that Osama Bin Laden was learned tens of thousands of people are being held in NK Gulags without proper legal grounds. Those North Koreans are toast.

Related Link: Osama to pay commission on all terrorists recruited by the UK Police Forces

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Lucia Human Breeders

The word "breeders", in relation to human parents, has now turned up in a Sunday Star Times article titled, "The Passion Killers".

I find the use of the word incredibly offensive as it relegates the procreation of human beings to the same level as that of animals. This is done by inference, as the phrase "to breed" has only ever, until recently, been used when referring to animals. It also calls to mind those periods in history when human being were bred for racial purity - the Lebensborn breeding farms of the Nazi period.

Last night I put up a post on the continuing Swedish experiment on creating gender confusion in small children. Further on in the article I linked to, was a paragraph from the New Totalitarians, explaining how in Sweden during the sixties, the much valued housewife was denigrated and therefore encouraged to go out to work by a media campaign to change the word used for housewife. A simple word change was all it took.
“When sexual equality was promulgated, and it was decided that a woman’s place was not at home but out at work, there was a rapid change in the language. The customary Swedish for housewife is husmor, which is honourable; it was replaced by the neologism hemmafru, literally ‘the-wife-who-stays-at-home’, which is derogatory. Within a few months, the mass media were able to kill the old and substitute the new term. By the end of 1969, it was almost impossible in everyday conversation to mention the state of housewife without appearing to condemn or to sneer. Swedish had been changed under the eyes and ears of the Swedes. Husmor had been discredited; the only way out was to use hemmafru ironically. Connected with this semantic shift, there was a change in feeling. Women who, a year or so before, had been satisfied, and possibly proud, to stay at home, began to feel the pressure to go out to work. The substitution of one word for the other had been accompanied by insistent propaganda in the mass media, so that it was as if a resolute conditioning campaign had been carried out. Very few were able to recognize the indoctrination in the linguistic manipulation; in the real sense of the word, the population had been brain-washed.”
It looks to me like a similar thing is happening here. On purpose or not, I don't know. But what I do know is that there are many people in NZ who support the idea that there are too many human beings on this planet. There are also a great number of university educated women, who, if you remember from another post of mine, are less likely to want children themselves (40% chance of not having children if a woman is university educated), and our media tends to be left wing. So, using the word "breeder" for those sorts of people shows their disdain for children and all who would beget them.

The use of the word "breeders" may seem cute and harmless, but, in reality it is a dangerous development in the word wars. It needs to be fought and resisted.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Fletch Is This Some Kind Of Record?


Here you'll see some photos taken today of a calculator that was bought in 1985. The display shows that the power is on and the calculator is working.
The thing is - THE BATTERIES HAVE NEVER BEEN CHANGED! HONEST!
Yes, it still has the original Sharp batteries (see second photo).

I suppose the calculator was used extensively in the first 3 or 4 years for exams and such and then used at home whenever something wanted adding up.
The batteries seem to have some kind of plastic wrap around them and have never leaked or anything.

Perhaps batteries these days are made to fail after a certain time so that one has to buy more?

[edit] Perhaps I didn't say explicitly, but yes, it is my calculator - this is not just an interesting article I found on the net somewhere...

Lucia You have to wear a dress!

Gates of Vienna has a new post up by Fjordman on the continuing horrifying goings-on of that Socialist Utopia up north - Sweden.
In a kindergarten in Stockholm, the parents were encouraged by the preschool teachers - apparently ideological pioneers - to equip their sons with dresses and female first names. There are now weeks in some places when boys HAVE TO wear a dress.
Our own socialists are most likely already taking note. First anti-smacking (just like Sweden), next gender confusion indoctrination for 3 to 6 year olds. Probably not for a number of years, though. Don't want to scare the populace too much, too soon. Just wait for complacency to settle in and then go for it.

Friday, May 25, 2007

ZenTiger Cullen sees red over greens

Cullen has "fired a broadside at the Green Party, warning that its opposition to Transmission Gully funding threatens to derail its own pet project of improving Auckland's trains".

It seems the Greens are beginning to flex their newly found political muscles, and are having a friendly "debate" with Labour over taxation.

Both are in agreement on one thing - taxpayers should pay more tax. They just disagree over what particular spending is best for us. Here's an idea - why don't they tax us DOUBLE of what they were planning, and then they can both spend to our benefit. Surely that will make us really happy?

Related Link: Cullen threatens Greens who threatened Cullen

Lucia Friday Night Free For All

If anyone's up for a chat.

Fletch Clark re-opens Mangere Office

Yep, according to what I heard on the radio today (and read HERE), Helen Clark has re-opened Labour's Mangere electorate office and installed list MP Darien Fenton within.

Looks like it's going to take more than the Philip Field case to dampen their enthusiasm for the electorate....

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Fletch Phoning Debtors - Work-related Question

Hey all.
I have a question which relates to my job.
I work in administration, and part of my job is phoning debtors; like everyone who does the job, it's really not my most favourite time of the month.
The thing which especially peeves me is that our terms (much like most businesses) are that people pay us by the 20th of the following month. This is all well and good, but my boss wants me on the phone RIGHT ON the 20th of the month asking debtors when they are going to pay.

This strikes me as being very rude and most unbusinesslike. I don't mind phoning people if they are a week to 10 days late or perhaps at the beginning of the next month, but right on the 20th just seems too soon to me.

My boss has even given me a written warning because of my reluctance to do it.

What is the generally accepted practice?
I know our business usually doesn't get phoned until we're in 30 days or 60 days.
The boss says he has to know for cash-flow reasons, but still....

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Fletch Shampoo - What's In It?

I went and bought some shampoo yesterday from the supermarket. There are a lot of shampoos and conditioners and moisturizers and such. These days I get a fright when I look at the list of chemicals on the back of the bottle. What are they? What do they do? And, more to the point, are they safe?

So, I had a nosey around the internet.

I found a list HERE of common shampoo ingredients and what they are supposed to do.
OK, fair enough, but are they safe?

Apparently not all of them are. I found this site with a plethora of articles (check out the one about chloroform in your toothpaste). According to this site and others, a lot of these fragrances, shampoos and health products aren't tested because the FDA doesn't require companies to test their own products for safety.

To check on your favourite cosmetic or fragrance check out the Skin Deep site - enter the name or the company that produces it and check if it's safe or not.

I'm not trying to scaremonger, but it's good to know what's in the stuff we buy if you're curious. One of the articles no newstarget even suggests that some ingredients may cause obesity.

I think my next stop is going to be The Body Shop. Maybe their stuff will be different.
Note: this post does not mean I agree with the Govt restricting health supplements and what-not. I think that prescription drugs do more harm than any supplement.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Lucia South Park - Bloody Mary episode

The Catholic Bishop's fight over the Bloody Mary episode of South Park is a fight for civilisation itself.

Some see it as an issue of free speech - where the ability to be as offensive and crass as possible is equated to much needed freedom to express unpalatable ideas. This is an example of the type of the confusion that is rampant in society today.

Screen "Bloody Mary" to the civilised world of one hundred years ago, and the reaction would be far more aggressive than that of the Catholic Bishops today. The men of hundred years ago would be very aware of the grave insult to women that the "Bloody Mary" episode represents, and would not leave it to Bishops to point out the obvious. That today's cravens cannot see it shows just how much we have degenerated over the years.

Lucia If the Da Vinci Code is real, is Lucifer fictional

Everyone knows the Da Vinci Code is fiction, right?

I ask, because I've met people that believe that what the Da Vinci Code "reveals" to be truth.
As the Catholic Church demanded the Da Vinci Code film be started with a message reminding people it is fiction, will they also demand the Lucifer film have a disclaimer that this is not the real Lucifer?
Just wondering if David Farrar is being tongue in cheek or if he falls into the above camp.

For the Catholic Church knows the Da Vinci Code to be fictional while as Lucifer is real.

Maybe David is just confused. Seems to be going around.

Related Link: David Farrar - Lucifer

Lucia Women more successful than men

It's official. Women are more successful than men.
New Zealand now has one of the largest gaps in the world between male and female achievers, with the men coming out as the losers, according to Massey University's pro vice-chancellor in education, James Chapman.
The definition of "success"? Getting a university degree in Education.
Professor Chapman's remarks followed a Massey University College of Education graduation in which only 15 of the 158 graduates were men.

Related Link: Women dominate at the chalkface
Strange that success is a university degree in Education. A few months back I read that a university educated woman is 40% likely to never have children. I wouldn't call that a success, unless I was a communist or a greenie.
In the absence of detailed research into why this was happening, observers were left to speculate, he said. There were probably many factors involved, but one of the main ones was the gradual "feminisation" of education in New Zealand, in terms of policies as well as teacher gender.
Maybe it's because teaching is one of those areas where it doesn't matter how good or bad you are, you still get paid as much as the next teacher. Maybe that's got something to do with it. That and the hotbed of Marxist thought that dominates teacher's colleges that maybe men, more than women, don't want to touch with a twenty foot barge pole.

Lucia Excommunication, Abortion and Sex

GayNZ has a politics opinion page on their website. With all the politicking that has been going on lately in NZ, I would have thought that there might have been something posted on a local political event. Maybe something on chickens or unfair imprisonment or maybe even the Budget. But no, last week excommunication was more exciting.

I think I'm beginning to detect a pattern. Later on last week, a post on Gordon Coupland and his defection from United Future appeared. This week, we have Sour William? (On Bill English), that worryingly "conservative Catholic" who believes anything can change if the public supports it and then the most recent, Religion vs. homosexual marriage.

As I've already posted on my approval of the automatic excommunication of politicians who vote to legalise abortion, and since it's come to my attention that there currently is no excommunication on those grounds; that Pope Benedict's words on excommunication referred to an excommunication that had not occurred, but that he supported if it had occurred, I feel I need to both do a correction, and at the same time, point out a number of major errors in the opening paragraph of GayNZ: Ex-Communicate! Ex-Communicate!.
Pope Benedict XVI wants to excommunicate all pro-choice Catholics from the church when it comes to abortion, and Archbishop George Pell across the pond already denies communion to LGBT Catholics. So why aren't clergy paedophiles receiving the same treatment?


First off, the Pope does not want to ex-communicate all pro-choice Catholics from the Church.

The Pope was asked by a journalist if he supported the excommunication of Catholic Mexican politicians who voted to legalise abortion in that country. The story that I originally linked to inferred that the Pope agreed that politicians ought to be excommunicated. However, it seems that excommunication was not meant. What was meant was that if the politicians were excommunicated, the Pope supported that. Here's What does the Prayer Really Say, trying to understand what was meant by what exactly was said:
So what did the Pope say? Is there a fuller quote of the Pope in response to the original question?
Yes, this excommunication was not an arbitrary one but is allowed by Canon law which says that the killing of an innocent child is incompatible with receiving Communion, which is receiving the body of Christ.
Going on the Pope spoke about pro-abortion Catholic politicians:
Selfishness and fear are at the root of (pro-abortion) legislation. We in the Church have a great struggle to defend life…life is a gift not a threat. The Church says life is beautiful, it is not something to doubt but it is a gift even when it is lived in difficult circumstances. It is always a gift.
Now what the Pope meant has been clarified:
To a question about politicians in Mexico who supported the law to decriminalize abortion, the Pope underscored the necessity of coherence for Christian politicians, repeating that the Church announces the Gospel of life: "Life is a gift, not a threat."

The director of the Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi [who just happens also to be the director of Vatican Radio] commenting on some news flashes about the Pope’s response clarified that since no excommunication was declared on the part of the Mexican bishops neither did the Pope mean to declare one. The legislative action favoring abortion, Fr. Lombardi said, is not compatible with participation in the Eucharist. "So are they excommunicated?" he was asked: "No", Fr. Lombardi clarified, "they have excluded themselves from Communion."
For more, see also : Italian coverage of the Pope's excommunication answer and The Pope's airplane comments and the left's obsession and Cannon lawyer - Towards clarity on abortion, excommunication, and the Eucharist

From all the above, you can see that was a little confusion over whether or not Mexican politicians that voted to legalise abortion have been excommunicated. It seems not. It's a pity, really. Excommunication would have been appropriate in my opinion. However GayNZ has incorrectly extrapolated the excommunication to all pro-choice Catholics, whether or not they have been involved in any way in abortion, which clearly wrong.

Denial of communion to
LGBT Catholics

Catholic communion is the actual eating of the Body of Christ and drinking His Blood. In other words, we eat our God. We eat the divine body of the Son of God. It's not like in Protestant churches where communion is simply done in memorial of the Last Supper.

No human being is really worthy to participate in divine life in this way, but we are commanded to by Christ to do so. But there are pre-conditions. A person must be a Catholic in good standing and free from mortal sin. (See Those in Mortal Sin Can't Go to Communion, Says Pope and Cannon lawyer - when you are supposed to stay away from communion and when the Church can stop you)

Eating the divine body of Our Lord while in a state of mortal sin is a serious mortal sin in itself. As the Bible says:
"Whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord" (1 Corinthians 11:27).
So, denying communion (the Body and Blood of Christ) to persons who publicly proclaim their sinfulness as an identity is the right and proper thing for any cleric to do; otherwise not only would they themselves would be profaning the body and blood of the Lord themselves, they would be allowing another to do so. To knowingly do either is also a mortal sin. (See also Cannon law 915)

In case anyone is confused at this point, let me explain that in the case of LGBT person, sex outside of marriage puts a person into a state of mortal sin - the type of sex (normal, gay, bestial, masturbation) doesn't matter. Since marriage is sacred and indissoluble, divorced and remarried people also put themselves and their marriage partner into a state of mortal sin if they do not undertake to abstain from sex.

However, it seems unfair that LGBT people are denied communion, when there may be others (such as the serial masturbator or a couple that are living together in an unwed state) saying nothing to anyone and going up every Sunday for communion. The only difference is that in the case of the LGBT person, they have proclaimed to the world their desire for sex and the type of sex they engage in by taking on the LGBT label or identity. The serial masturbator, who would also be denied communion if he or she did the same thing, instead stays quiet and no one therefore has any reason to deny him or her.

But hey, any reason to bash Catholics by the non-practising must be good, so let's not worry about the fine print!

Why is the Church so interested in sex and marriage anyway?
Jesus said that in the beginning God made marriage a permanent sign of his love. In marriage, Jesus said, God joins together man and woman so that they form a new life as one: "They are no longer two, but one flesh." Man and woman in holy matrimony become an icon of the Trinity, a single spiritual life made up of three "persons" - the man and the woman and God, who unites them in the bond of his love.

The marital act by which the marriage covenant is consummated is also a sign of the communion of love in the Trinity. As husband and wife give themselves to each other completely, each accepts the gift of the other in tender love.

God means sex to be an act of self-sacrifice and worship - husband and wife, shorn of all self-interest, offering body and soul to each other, loving wholly for the sake of each other, hearts penetrated with the love of God. We can hear an echo of this belief in a nuptial vow from the thirteenth century:
With this ring I thee wed ...
and with my body I thee worship.
[...]

Sex is central to the Catholic vision of the human person because it is a supernatural sign, a mysterious sacrament that takes us back to "the beginning." The marriage of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden was a foreshadowing of the relationship that God wants with each of us. The apostle Paul said that the two becoming one flesh in the marital union is a symbol of Jesus' union with his church. He said all humanity, joined in the church , was to be made one flesh with Jesus. Paul added, not without a little understatement, "This is a great mystery."
From The Catholic Passion: Rediscovering the power and the beauty of the Faith by David Scott.

So, in light of all of the above, you can see that sex to the Church is more than just physical pleasure. In fact, to use sex and another person for just physical pleasure is a great crime, perverting what sex was intended to be. We are more than just animals, we are creatures that exist both physically and spiritually. Physical like an animal, but spiritual like an angel. We could be called an animal/angel hybrid. Like animals we can be driven by our physical desires, but then like angels we have the freedom to choose as to how we act.

To say that LGBT persons have no choice in how they act sexually is to reduce them to mere animals. Like all of us, LGBT persons have been made in the image of God. They are no different from any of us, and so like everyone are called to follow the rules for their own happiness instituted by God, and made possible by and through Christ.

So why aren't clergy paedophiles receiving the same treatment?

Just last week, the Vatican defrocked two priests for the sexual abuse of children.
Cincinnati - The Vatican has removed from the Roman Catholic priesthood two men who served in southwest Ohio after considering evidence that they sexually abused children, the Archdiocese of Cincinnati said Thursday.

Kenneth Schoettmer and Richard Unwin have been permanently removed from the clerical state by Pope Benedict XVI.

[...]

Schoettmer, 65, publicly admitted in 2001 to three sexual encounters with teenage boys between 1984 and 1999. In 2003, he pleaded guilty to a charge that he fondled a 17-year-old boy in 1999 and was sentenced to five years of probation.

The archbishop said in 2003 that Unwin, 54, had acknowledged having inappropriate sexual behavior 15 years earlier. He has been on leave for almost four years.

Related Link: Vatican defrocks two Ohio priests.


I don't know if the men in the article above are allowed to receive communion. It may be that they are. But, the only circumstance where they would be allowed to receive communion would be if they had been absolved via Confession. That would require repentance and a sincere undertaking to never abuse children again.

The opinion writer asks why Priests that have fallen in this way are not treated in the same way as LGBT persons. The answer is, all are treated the same. If a person refuses to see anything wrong with what they have done and what they continue to do and publicly proclaim it to the world, then that person will most likely be denied communion.

Rather than there being any sort of discrimination on the part of the Church, the GayNZ opinion writer seems to want to redefine what the Church ought to consider sinful and how the Church resolves sinfulness. All I can say to that, when you're faced with the traditions of 2000 years and a very well-defined theology, you've got no chance. It's like flinging yourself against a brick wall - the wall's going to win.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

ZenTiger No exceptions

[Tongue in cheek alert]

For all the people that argued there should be no exceptions to the law, regarding allowing a half a glass of alcoholic wine at a mass held in prison - you will no doubt be sad to hear that sanity has prevailed and the Corrections Department has backed down and allowed Priests to use wine in communion.

There is some good news for you lot though:


An ambulance was stopped and given a ticket for speeding in a 50Kph zone. They were caught at 4am on an empty road doing 67kph. Once the ticket was issued, and the policeman had explained the importance for not allowing exceptions, the ambulance went off at a more stately 49kph, and delivered their heart attack victim to hospital. He was pronounced DOA.

The ambulance driver said - "the laws the law, and there never should be an exception, even if it is written into the law."

Further news tonight, Dr Michael Cullen announced a single flat tax rate of 39 cents in the dollar for personal tax, GST and company tax. "For too long, we have had a range of exceptions built into our tax laws, and it doesn't make sense. The entire country will now be taxed at the one rate - no exceptions."

And the Corrections Department also announced prisoners would no longer be allowed to exit the prison temporarily on compassionate grounds, such as attending a funeral relating to death in the immediate family. "We've been convinced that, apart from the issue of wine at communion, there should be no exceptions to any laws, no exemptions, no variations, no 'get out of jail free' cards, as it were."

Because to allow an exemption, for any reason just doesn't make sense.

Related Link: Corruptions Department confesses to sinning and seeks absolution

Friday, May 18, 2007

Lucia Friday Night Free For All

On tonight at Murray's.

Lucia Still feeling ill

This week has been a nightmare. It started with some truly horrible allegations against the police force, coupled with the release of David Bain from prison due to a horrendous miscarriage of justice by our own Court of Appeal. And then on Wednesday, a whole sorry bunch of sanctimonious politicians voted away parental authority, with sickening front page pictures of celebrations and happiness, getting that debate out of the way for a budget with more taxes (petrol tax for Wellington and Auckland) and a pathetic attempt at trying to enforce savings for retirement.

The only thing that has kept me sane is limiting my exposure to the radio and barely looking at my daily newspaper that arrives this morning. And going to Mass every morning. All of the priests in my area have gone on a retreat, so New Zealand's only Cardinal said Mass up in Waikanae every day this week. It was wonderful. I'd love to be able to listen to his sermons all of the time.

I think the time has past where we look to politicians to solve what is going on in NZ with this out of control government and the one in waiting that looks to do more of the same. Change has to come within each person. Not many people have really had a reason to critically look at this country and what's happening until recently when the long arm of the law could potentially reach into our homes and take our children. That more than anything has been the turning point. From this point on, I don't think how the people will react in future will be at all predictable.

As an aside, it's very interesting that there has been not a peep from the NZ MSM on the massive pro-family rally in Rome earlier this week. Something between 200,000 and 1.7 million people turned up to support the family and therefore not give their sanction to treating defactos and gay couples like married couples. Only 1000 counter protesters showed up.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Lucia Online image

My online image.
And what appears in the comments :

Unfortunately, due to the nature of the political blogosphere and my areas of interest, I still need the rather aggressive picture. I do hope to soften it in the future, but not yet.

Besides, it suits the types of characters I used to play in AD&D a number of years ago. Back when I was doing martial arts, dance and weight training at various gyms around Wellington.

Not that I do any of that now.

ZenTiger Immigration to Iraq to play cricket?

One wonders if immigration to Iraq would be more attractive for the citizens of some countries. At least the power supply is marginally better.
Zimbabwe faces shortages of bread and flour, the government has warned, which may cause even more hardship....A report in the government controlled newspaper - The Herald - says Zimbabwe's sugar industry is also experiencing problems, including industrial action by workers....Last week, households in Zimbabwe were told they would be limited to four hours power supply a day in a move designed to support the country's wheat farmers who need power to irrigate their crops.
Related Link: No bread, no sugar, no flour, no power - and Bob's your uncle

Well, Mugabe always has cricket to look forward to. Oops, looks like that has gone too. Mugabe's looking like a lame duck President: Zimbabwe-Australia Series bulldozed and left homeless

ZenTiger I thought we were an autonomous collective

Going along with Lucyna's theme of the end of democracy, it is interesting to see that with the resignation of Gordon Copeland from United Future and going independent, we have an MP only in parliament because he was a list MP of United Future. Now that he isn't part of United Future, should he really have a seat in parliament?

On the other hand, Copeland's position over the anti-smacking bill more accurately reflected the views of his constituency.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

ZenTiger Turia Excuses White Supremacists

Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia has been branded an apologist for White Supremacist Groups after she claimed the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) and The World Church of the Creator (WCOTC) were not necessarily criminal groups.
The row started after Mrs Turia, whose Te Tai Hauauru electorate includes Wanganui, rejected the idea that all members were criminals.
"There are a lot of groups involved in a lot of bad behaviour," she told Radio New Zealand. "I'm not excusing any of the behaviour. It is totally unacceptable. But just like I'm not prepared to say the police are all rapists, I am also not prepared to say that all these gangs are criminals.

I know a lot of White Supremacists that only want to kill Maori, Jews, non-Protestants, Catholics, gays and blacks in a figurative sense. Some of these people are good people, and there's nothing really wrong with them associating closely with their colleagues who form gangs and travel around inciting violence and engaging in the odd back street beating."

"A good gang member will be loyal to his gang right or wrong, but that doesn't mean that the gang member is a criminal."
Well, I guess you can't really argue with that logic. Still, does Turia really want a New Zealand chapter of the KKK moving in next door?

Related Link: Anger at Turia's defence of basic liberties

Turia is invited over to the neighbours BBQ - note that the guy in white on the far right is actually a nice guy, and not a criminal

ZenTiger The Global Warming Vegie-Burger

Apparently, the single biggest impact on reducing Global Warming, at a personal level, is to become vegetarian. So my challenge to all those that believe we must reverse our CO2 levels or die - go vegan. Leave a comment indicating that you have converted to a vegan lifestyle as part of your commitment to your cause.

And the related Link - Gore might possibly be a hypocrite - indicates that Al Gore knows fully the impact such a switch would have, being an expert and all, and yet he continues to allegedly eat meat. Another bum steer from the man whose house consumes more electricity in a month than the average American family manages in a year.

ZenTiger Death Penalty for (Accidental) Abortion?

It's tough when you have the death penalty thrown at you for killing an unborn child. Maybe Amnesty can go to bat for this guy - they believe it's a fundamental right, don't they? I'd add that they don't believe in the death penalty either - but that is now debatable. Related Link: Jury Recommends Death Penalty for Serial Abortionist

Lucia The end of democracy

The anti-smacking bill has just been passed with an overwhelming majority in parliament, despite being opposed by the majority of New Zealanders.

God save New Zealand. I don't think anyone can at this point.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Lucia Homosexual hands off Poland

Sign the petition.

Related Link: Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute

Fletch 'I took the Pepsi'

Apologies to Bob Marley.
Sung to 'I Shot The Sheriff'

'Manager Brown always hated me
For what, I don't know.
Now he trying to drag me in guilty
For the drinking of a large Pepsi,
For the price of a large Pepsi

And I sayyyy

I took the Pepsi
But I didn't take the Sub, you see
Oh no, oh nooo'


Disclaimer, trademarks or brands may have been changed for dramatic effect.

Please gentle reader, feel free to add more lyrics.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Lucia Friday Night Free For All

I hope everyone's all set.

Fire on. Red wine topped up.

Yep.

Chat on.

Lucia Automatic excommunication for Politicians who vote for abortion

The Pope is really making waves in the news. The automatic excommunication for politicians that vote for abortion laws have really got the media excited.

Currently, there's automatic excommunication for any Catholic woman who kills her baby by abortion and any medical personnel who perform the abortion. Now there's excommunication for politicians who vote for abortion laws.
The background to the hullaballoo was the recent vote by Mexico's parliament to legalise abortion. An Italian reporter on the plane asked the Pope whether he agreed that Catholic MPs in Mexico City who voted for legalisation should be considered excommunicated. The Pope replied: "Yes. The excommunication was not something arbitrary. It is part of the [canon law] code. It is based simply on the principle that the killing of an innocent human child is incompatible with going in Communion with the body of Christ. Thus, they [the bishops] did not do anything new or surprising, or arbitrary."

The Rev John Coughlin, a law professor at the University of Notre Dame, flatly contradicted the Pope, saying there was no provision in canon law which stated that Catholic politicians who voted to legalise abortion automatically excommunicated themselves.

The Pope's spokesman, the Rev Federico Lombardi, said the Pope was not making new policy in his remarks, and that formal excommunication of offending politicians - a complicated and rare procedure distinct from the doctrine of "self-excommunication" - was not on the cards. But he endorsed the main drift of the Pope's words. "Legislative action in favour of abortion is incompatible with participation in the Eucharist," he said. Politicians who vote that way, he went on, "exclude themselves from Communion".
Related Link: Pope stirs up row over abortion on visit to Brazil

About time, really. Politicians have to be accountable for their actions in some way.

Lucia Scaring children to death

A couple of days ago, my ten year old child's teacher asked his class to write on the recent murder of the two year old by gang members. I was horrified, and went into the school to talk to the teacher about how completely inappropriate it was for ten year olds to even be having to think about such a subject, let alone write about it. The teacher confessed that she hadn't even thought about it from that perspective.

Today I came across an article by Peggy Noonan, on We're scaring our children to death. Even though it was written for an American audience, it's also very relevant for New Zealand.
Children are both brave and fearful. They'll walk up to a stranger and say something true that a grown-up would fear to say. But they are also subject to terrors, some of them irrational, and to anxieties. They need a stable platform on which to stand. From it they will be likely to step forward into steady adulthood. Without it, they will struggle; they will be less daring in their lives because life, they know, is frightful and discouraging.

We are not giving the children of our country a stable platform. We are instead giving them a soul-shaking sense that life is unsafe, incoherent, full of random dread. And we are doing this, I think, for three reasons.

One is politics — our political views, our cultural views, so need to be expressed and are, God knows, so much more important than the peace of a child. Another is money — there's money in the sickness that is sold to us. Everyone who works at a TV network knew ratings would go up when the Cho tapes broke.

But another reason is that, for all our protestations about how sensitive we are, how interested in justice, how interested in the children, we are not. We are interested in politics. We are interested in money. We are interested in ourselves.
I'm going to give the teacher a copy of the above article after school today. I need it to sink in that it is not her job to terrify my child, and that by doing so she was doing more harm than good.

Lindsay Mitchell has a post up related to this subject, on how if babies are brought up in a stressful environment, they never recover.
[...] Sue Gerhardt, in her book Why Love Matters, blames the hormone cortisol which floods the brain of a baby exposed too often or too long to stressful situations. From then on it will either over- or under-produce cortisol whenever the child is exposed to stress. Too much is linked to depression and fearfulness; too little to emotional detachment and aggression. Study after study emphasises the importance for these children of forming emotional bonds with adults ...
Lindsay relates this back to those children in state-care, but, children in child care are just as vulnerable. I'll never forget the description given to me by a child carer of how babies coped with being put into daycare. The babies knew they weren't with their parents, so shut down emotionally. Their faces would change as they were handed over by their parents and would only reanimate when their parents came back to get them.

I had a similar experience with my first born when he was three months old. My husband and I went out for three or four hours leaving him in the care of my sister. My sister loved him and enjoyed being with him and he knew her. But as soon as I came back home, he took one look at me and burst into tears as if to say that he thought I'd abandoned him. So, I never left him with anyone again, until he was much older.

That's really what adults forget; that children are not adults, that they are still emotionally as well as physically immature. They rely on us to protect them, to make them feel safe, to make them ready for the world. If they are constantly bombarded with terrifying stories, they will feel very, very unsafe in the world. And people who feel unsafe have a need to control their environment and to control others in order to feel safe.

If we keep going in this way, our political systems will continue to be used to control everyone's lives - probably in a way that is worse than now.

So, if you have children, turn off the tv (especially the news), don't let them see the paper and be careful of what's on the radio. Whatever you do, do not, under any circumstances, even if you believe it to be true, terrify your children of what will happen because of global warming. Do not even think of showing children Al Gore's propaganda film, the Inconvenient Truth. Protect your children from the horrors being broadcast over the media. Our future and theirs, depends on it.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Lucia Ten year old asked to write about murder

Today my ten year old boy told me that at school he was told to write a story, imagining he was a witness at the shooting of the two year old boy by gang members on Saturday. When the teacher was asked "Why?" by one of the children, she got annoyed and replied that we don't want this to happen again!

Apart from my kids not watching tv, let alone the news, how does getting ten year olds to imagine what it would be like to be a witness to the murder of another child somehow prevent it ever happening again? I don't want my ten year old imagining murder - anyone's murder, let alone having to write about it in school!

Looks like another visit to the principal tomorrow morning.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Lucia Confused Catholic thinks Jesus was a socialist

A while back, I came across a commenter on TBR who wholeheartedly believed that it was possible to be both a Christian and a socialist. If that were not bad enough, this person also believed that Jesus Christ was a socialist. The writings of Joseph Ratzinger condemning Liberation Theology (Catholic socialism in action) were not enough to sway her, as even though she considers herself Catholic, she and apparently many other Catholic socialists were very unhappy when he became Pope.

So, I thought, maybe something from the Catholic Encyclopaedia on Socialism would help.
[...] it is probably safe to conclude that those who profess to reconcile the two doctrines are mistaken: either their grasp of the doctrines of Christianity or of Socialism will be found to be imperfect, or else their mental habits will appear to be so lacking in discipline that they are content with the profession of a belief in incompatible principles.
Surely, I meant communism not socialism? Nope, socialism is comes from the same source as communism - the only difference is that socialism is less extreme than communism. For example, in regards to private property rights as in NZ where we are allowed to own property, but it seems it's only on paper since we do not have the right to develop our properties as we see fit - we need to apply to the government for permission. Not as bad as in a communist coutnry, where all property belongs to the state, but not far off.

To also say that Jesus was a socialist shows extreme ignorance of what Christianity is about.
Man is here for a definite purpose, a purpose which transcends the limits of this mortal life, and his first business is to realize this purpose and carry it out with whatever help and guidance he may find. The purpose is a spiritual one, but he is free to choose or refuse the end for which he was created; he is free to neglect or to co-operate with the Divine assistance, which will give his life the stability and perfection of a spiritual rather than of a material nature. This being so, there must be a certain order in the nature of his development. He is not wholly spiritual nor wholly material; he has a soul, a mind, and a body; but the interests of the soul must be supreme, and the interests of mind and body must be brought into proper subservience to it.
As I said on TBR, Socialism is not compatible because it focuses entirely on the body, on the physical world. It's aim is to create a utopia on earth by whatever means necessary. Yet, utopia on earth is not possible until Christ's coming. Our entire focus as Christians ought to be to getting to Heaven, and then helping others get to Heaven. Christ's mission on earth was to open the gates of Heaven and defeat the ruler of this world (Satan) and to provide a way for us to follow Him (into Heaven). To say otherwise is completely wrong.

Monday, May 7, 2007

Lucia GayNZ on Panic Christians

Looks like those that want a gay adoption bill are a little freaked out by the opposition to the anti-smacking bill. So, in order to prevent the same public opposition (which they assume to be whipped up by the media), they want to start getting the message out now, so that the public is on-side.
Clearly, we must not make the same mistake whenever the awaited adoption reform bill finally materialises. We must get out there beforehand, present the case for the benefits for same sex parenting from pediatrics and developmental psychology, provide advance rebuttals of the Christian Right's antigay propaganda, and establish a Campaign for Same-Sex Parenting or Family Equality to advance our side of the case well in advance.
It's got me wondering what the "benefits" of having same-sex parents would be. All the research I've seen shows that children are better off raised in a family with biological parents of opposite sexes that are married to each other.

Related Link: Panic Christians

Lucia Chris Trotter on John Key morphing into PM

As I was somewhat distracted on Friday, I didn't get around to typing out Trotter's From the Left opinion piece from the Dominion Post. It's now appeared online, saving me the trouble.

When you deal with the devil, the devil always wins. I think it's notable that people like Trotter are so impressed with Key. So, here's Chris Trotter in full isn't he just wonderful on John Key and his deal with Labour.
Key morphs into prime minister

Okay, I admit it, I was wrong about John Key. What he did on Wednesday afternoon was quite extraordinary. Not only did he help his principal political opponent out of a very deep hole, but he also told the denizens of the far Christian Right that they should stay in theirs.

The pro-smacking lobby was positively salivating at the thought of 18 more months of promoting their creepy version of Christianity to the New Zealand public. And I'm sure their leaders were also secretly delighted at being given such a wonderful opportunity to colonise and subvert the National Party.

Don't laugh. The once proud Republican Party long ago fell prey to these holy red-necks, and even across the Tasman, the influence of Christian fundamentalism in the Liberal and National parties has grown ominously.

There is a deep and disquieting political synergy between the dark emissaries of neo-conservatism and the dogmatic proselytisers of Christian fundamentalism. The former seek an all-encompassing ideology strong enough to control the disintegrative tendencies of liberal capitalism; the latter claim to have found it.

Of late, this neo-conservative- Christian fundamentalist axis of influence appeared to be gaining an impressive amount of political traction. Certainly, something very weird was going on in the National Party.

Like those Transformer monster machines my friends' kids used to watch in the 1980s, the party was changing: reassembling itself into an older, darker and much more dangerous political mechanism. The young, confident and voter-friendly National which John Key has been marketing since the end of 2006 was beginning to look pretty shaky.

Even worse, it was Bill English, the man so many voters had hoped would steer National back into more inclusive and conciliatory waters, who was leading the transformation. The thoughtful and pragmatic representative had morphed into an angry standard bearer for the "power-at-any-price" school of politics.

The "moderate", tipped to be our next finance minister, was demanding massive cuts in government spending and further deregulation of the labour market. Could this really be the Bill English who, seven years ago, at a meeting of the Balclutha branch of the party, had boldly spelt out what National needed to do to regain power?

"The groups that vote for us are the ones who are shrinking fastest . . . We lose 1.5 seats each election just on the demographics alone. The new voters will be young and brown. If we're not getting their vote, we're not going to get into Parliament . . .

"There was a smell that came across the party early in the 90s – too focused on the dollars, not worried enough about the people who were missing out. We didn't do enough to change those impressions . . . There's a perception that rich people vote National, and it's true. I hate that. It would do us good to see us drive some of those people away."

Mr Key's strategy over the past six months has been based squarely on his deputy's Balclutha analysis. From volleyball at Ratana, to walkabouts at McGeehan Close and Waitangi, everything he's done has strobed "National wants to help the people who are missing out".

But, about a month ago, National's pollsters and focus groups started whispering in Mr Key's and Mr English's ears that Helen Clark's stubborn defence of Sue Bradford's "anti-smacking" bill was collapsing Labour's support across all demographics. "Middle New Zealand" was angry and confused about the bill's objectives. The right-wing churches' misinformation campaign was bearing fruit. National had only to keep the fundamentalist cauldron bubbling, and in 2008 New Zealand would be theirs. Or would it?

Mr English was confident that he and his boss could ride the neo- conservative-Christian-fundamentalist tiger, and saw no harm in allowing National to become the instrument of God's righteous wrath.

But Mr Key decided that he didn't want to – and didn't have to – win that way. He had gone into politics to help New Zealanders lift their game not to fight the Battle of Armageddon.

By reaching out to Ms Bradford and Miss Clark and committing his party to a principled compromise on the repeal of s59 of the Crimes Act, Mr Key has made certain that the next National government will be just that – a government.

That's a prime-ministerial transformation.

Conservatives anticipating the Rapture should call Brian Tamaki.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Lucia Back from the Principal on smacking

I visited the principal of my children's school this morning to discuss the issue of my youngest child's class being asked by their teacher yesterday as to what happened to them at home if they were naughty.

The principal didn't seem disturbed by this but he's going to find out why the teacher asked. He didn't indicate whether or not he thought it was appropriate or not, and it seems there is nothing that can be done to stop teachers asking this question of children.

The upshot is, any person can report any child to CYF if they feel a child is at risk of emotional or physical harm. There is nothing the principal can do if a teacher decides that smacking constitutes physical harm and decides to report it.

As this is a Catholic school, I gave him a copy of the Bishop's statement (initially blogged by Mr Tips), containing the following key sentences:
However, we also recognise that alongside the need to protect children’s safety and wellbeing, there is also a need to protect the subsidiarity of families, which means government should not interfere unnecessarily with decisions that families are able to make for themselves. Family subsidiarity should be respected unless a child’s safety is at risk. We do not see minor and infrequent acts of physical punishment as putting a child’s safety at risk.
I also asked when it comes to a conflict between our faith and the government, what takes precedence in a Catholic school. He said for him, the faith would, but he knows of a number of Catholic school principals that would most likely report parents for smacking.

There are also school programmes for keeping children safe, and he thinks it's likely that smacking will be included in those programmes. That means, that school children will most likely be told that they are not to be smacked as this is harmful to them.

At this point, I'm not really sure what to do next, apart from waiting to see what the teacher's reason for asking was.

Right now, I'm very, very disturbed.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Lucia Worry about teachers asking about smacking

My six year old child tonight, over dinner, told me that his teacher asked all the children in the class what their parents do when they are naughty. Many children said they were smacked.

The anti-smacking law hasn't even been passed, yet. (Or have I missed it?)

I'm going to be talking to the principal of the school tomorrow about this.

Lucia Recommended reads on the anti-smacking bill

Stephen Franks on Bradford wins complete S.59 victory

Sue Bradford on Close Up, worth watching for seeing her reaction to being asked if she would resign if there were any prosecutions for light smacking under her new bill. (When you click on the link, go to the "related video" box, and choose "Smacking compromise" to play the video.)

How do I feel about all this? Not happy.

Lucia Experiences of motherhood and conservatism [UPDATE 2]

Along the way on my journey to conservatism, there have been a number of historical events and stories of people within those events that have really stuck and helped penetrate the fog of liberalism that I had been sucked in by over the years from my childhood to adulthood.

One such event, the stories of which I had been told from when I was a young child, were my Dad's experiences in the Soviet Union during WW2. However, it wasn't until I had grown older and read more and understood more that my Grandmother dying during the journey out of the Soviet Union gained a real significance to my own motherhood, and thereby took on a whole new meaning.

My Dad's entire family was rounded up at the beginning of WW2 from their home in Poland by the invading Soviet army, and herded into cattle cars for the trip into Siberia from Poland in the middle of winter. Apparently many children died during this trip, as the cattle cars (designed to move cattle) were not heated. Food was limited. The toilet facilities were just a hole in the side of the car. My Dad told me the kids were afraid of falling out. It was a valid fear, as I later read that children did indeed fall out.

Their family survived nearly two years in the work camps (now known as "gulags"). When the amnesty for Polish political prisoners came through after the Soviet Union was betrayed by their ally, Nazi Germany and needed new allies, my Dad's family embarked on the long journey out. It initially involved a long walk (100 miles or so) out to the train station. For some reason, my Grandfather and oldest Uncle went on a separate journey to join up with the Polish army that was gathering under General Anders, leaving my Grandmother to take the rest of the children separately. But rather than taking my Grandmother and family to the Polish army, they were left in the middle of Kazakhstan by the Soviet authorities with only 2 weeks of food and no hope of future survival.

I talked to my Uncle Ted about this two years ago. He filled me in on more of the details. He would have been the oldest of the children that remained with my Grandmother at age 18. My Dad was 14 at the time. When the food ran out, the family tried to beg for food from the Kazaks that lived there. There was very little to scavenge as the area was a desert. Eventually, they all got sick one by one. When the first child died (one of the younger ones), their mother stopped going out to beg for food. My Uncle told me what it had felt like, waiting to die. He had no energy to do anything, so like everyone else just waited for death on the ground.

By the time the burial detail had come with blankets to get them, only 3 of the older children were left alive. The 3 youngest and their mother had died. The older children were so close to death that my Uncle thinks that if the burial detail had waited any longer, they would have been dead. But, as the burial people couldn't bring themselves to leave the children, they instead fed them and helped them out of the country.

My point is this. The older children survived (just barely). The younger children died. The mother died. When I'd first heard this story, the significance of my Grandmother's death didn't register. But then I read more, similar stories. What stood out was that very few mothers made it out of the Soviet Union alive. Now that I am a mother myself, I can understand why.

No mother can stand by and let her children starve. Those mothers would have eaten hardly anything of any food they got, in order to give more to their children. Especially if they were all starving. The older children would have been able to go out and scavenge and maybe keep a little for themselves, so would have had a better chance of survival. The younger children would have been entirely dependent on what their mothers and older siblings gave them. And the mothers would not have been able to bring themselves to eat much when their children were starving.

I have experienced something like this. If we are close to running out of a particular food item that my children like, I will give it to them and eat something else myself. Of course I have the option to eat something else since there is no chance of us starving here in NZ. But I understand the inability to eat something that your child wants. How much stronger would that urge be in a starvation situation had my child not just wanted, but needed whatever food I had?

The intellectual understanding of such a situation and the visceral are two different things. Sure, a person could intellectualise that giving your children most, if not all of your food is counter-productive, because then you do not have the strength to survive and quite probably help with those children's survival in the future. It would have made sense for my Grandmother to keep herself alive at the expense of some of the smaller children - but, understanding why she did not and could not is the test as to whether or not you understand the mind of a mother.

As to how this relates to my journey to conservatism; I don't know if I can articulate it. All I can say is that it does. That blood tie to my own children is so important, important in such a way that all parents experience, that when non-parents imply in smacking debates, for instance, that they care for my own children more than I do and that they are trying to protect children from "violence" (where smacking equals violence), I know they have absolutely no comprehension of how deep a parent's care for the safety and well-being of their own child goes. It goes beyond logic and beyond life itself. And that was demonstrated to me by the story of my Grandmother's death and backed up by my own life experiences.

So that must be part of why I am a conservative now. Idealism can only take a person so far before their own experiences of life (if they are honest with themselves and examine things carefully) show them whether or not there is truth in their beliefs.

Related Links: The General Langfitt story : Polish Refugees Recount Their Experiences of Exile, Dispersal and Resettlement (update 2 21/03/15 with web archive link as original no longer accessible)
Lives Remembered: Polish Poetry in Siberian Exile

UPDATE 1: I've added a picture of my paternal Grandmother

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Lucia John Key on anti-smacking legislation

Can anyone back this up? If you saw Agenda tonight, please comment.
Just watching Agenda, with Key, Barnett, Clark & Bradford on.

Key has just trumped Bradford & Clark.

He stated unequivocally that, if parents are criminalized by the amendment for light smacking, then, if elected PM, he will change the legislation to prevent that.

What it means is that National's support for the amendment is conditional on the amendment functioning in the way that the likes of Bradford & Clark are saying it is supposed to work, and, if that turns out to not be the case, then it will be amended so that it does function that way.
Related Link: Peter S on David Farrar's blog

Fletch Smacking Law Sure to Pass Despite 'Compromise'

Yes, according to the Herald, John Key and Helen Clark met this morning and reached a compromise of sorts on the smacking bill with an amendment that reads -
To avoid doubt it is affirmed that police have the discretion not to prosecute complaints against a parent of a child, or person in the place of a parent of a child, in relation to an offence involving the use of force against a child where the offence is considered to be so inconsequential that there is no public interest in proceeding with a prosecution.
Now, to me, that isn't much of a compromise. Smacking your child will still be against the law but police will have the powers to decide whether to prosecute or not (which they already do). They will probably also have to refer the matter to CYFS, who are a law unto themselves.

So, don't be fooled. This isn't any kind of victory for parents or for families in this country.

Smacking your child will still be illegal.

UPDATE by Lucyna
: See Not PC for a more detailed post on the smacking ban

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Fletch Child Correction Expert in NZ

An expert in child correction is in the country (someone who actually knows what he is talking about) and is supposed to be meeting with the major political parties on Tuesday (today?) and Wednesday, according to info on the Family First website.

Snippet below from FF website -

"There is No Sound Scientific Evidence
to Support
Anti-Smacking Bans"

ROBERT E. LARZELERE PhD

Associate Professor of Psychology Dept. Human Development & Family Science - Oklahoma State University

Dr Larzelere has been one of the world's foremost experts on child correction for the past 30 years - including:
• One of three social scientific expert witnesses on the side of successfully defending a similar section to NZ’s s59 of Canada’s Criminal Code.
(The social scientific expert witnesses on the other side included Joan Durrant. Durrant has been painted as the authority on smacking bans in NZ yet was ignored in her own country!)
• Member of Task Force on Corporal Punishment - American Psychological Association.
• One of 7 experts invited to present at 1996 Scientific Consensus Conference on the Short- and Long-Term Consequences of Corporal Punishment - co-sponsored by American Academy of Pediatrics.