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Showing posts from December, 2012

Louisa Wall: Gay Marriage debate to divide Grandparents and Grandchildren, should really ask if pornography is the main divider

The Labour MP behind the bid to legalise gay marriage expects the debate to divide grandparents and grandchildren. With Labour MP Louisa Wall's Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill tipped for a final reading in May, same-sex marriage could be passed into law next year. Ms Wall said the bill was a "talking point" with the potential to split families this summer. "For me, it's an issue like the Springbok tour: you're either for it, or against it. I'm happy for it to be one of the topics of holiday conversation." She said debate over marriage equality reflected a "generational issue", with pensioners proving to be the minority in opposition. Oh, she wishes. Plenty of women my age (mid-40's) that I know are against it as well. A recent Dominion Post readers' survey also reflected the divisiveness of the issue. Of the 613 readers polled from December 13 to 20, 35 per cent identified themselves as being in suppor

People as objects

It's sad to hear that the Indian women who was gang-raped, beaten and abused on a bus has died from her injuries. "Give the harshest of punishments" said the father of some-one being questioned by the police in the matter. Apparently, many rapes and attacks on women go unreported in India, and the cases that do go to court can languish in the backlog of cases, as the justice system cannot keep up. Hopefully, this case will galvanise the Indian government into action. Maybe they can outsource? Harshest of punishments is deserved

Dawkins is an embarrassment says particle physicist Peter Higgs, postulator of the "God Particle"

In an artist's conception, a Higgs boson erupts from a collision of protons. (Source: National Geographic ) This will be a blow to those who think Dawkins is right about everything, and that science always trumps religion. Peter Higgs, the particle physicist who postulated the existence of the Higgs Boson, the so called ‘God particle’ has criticized Richard Dawkins as an embarrassment for his fundamentalist attacks on religion: “What Dawkins does too often is to concentrate his attack on fundamentalists. But there are many believers who are just not fundamentalists. Fundamentalism is another problem. I mean, Dawkins in a way is almost a fundamentalist himself , of another kind. He agreed with some of Dawkins’ thoughts on the unfortunate consequences that have resulted from religious belief, but he was unhappy with the evolutionary biologist’s approach to dealing with believers and said he agreed with those who found Dawkins’ approach “embarrassing”. In the El Mundo inte

NEW POLL: David Cameron splitting his party over "same sex marriage"

A new poll of Conservative Party members in the UK has found that Conservative MP, David Cameron, is out of step with his own party over gay marriage. David Cameron has been warned that his backing for gay marriage is splitting the Conservatives and that he has underestimated the strong opposition to it in his own party. A survey of more than 2,500 Conservative Party members for The Independent found that a huge majority reject his arguments for legalising same-sex marriage. The findings come amid renewed speculation among some Tory MPs that Mr Cameron could face a leadership challenge before the next general election. His critics fear that the UK Independence Party will exploit the opposition to gay marriage among natural Conservative supporters. They claim he will alienate Tory MPs further and if he fails to offer an "in or out" referendum on Britain's EU membership in a speech in the new year. "Gay marriage is a toxic mix, " one Tory MP said. "

Whale Oil has included this blog in his worst political blog awards [UPDATE]

You've got to laugh, really. We should do a poll on the most anti-Catholic blogs in New Zealand. Whale Oil Beef Hooked would be right up there. Related link: Whaleoil Awards – Worst Political Blog UPDATE: I treat online conversations like I treat real conversations. If someone is being an asshole, I won't talk to them. Anyone that wants a conversation after acting like a real jerk needs to apologise and grovel profusely, and then accept that they don't have a right to have me respond to them. Continuing to attack me just makes it worse. I really wonder if some people on blogs actually know how to talk to real people face to face, or if all their interaction is just limited to the keyboard.

Age divide on gay marriage should really be an ignorance divide

In my teenage years, I was your very typical, rebellious, indoctrinated Gen-Xer. When I left college, I didn't believe in marriage, had met lots of cool people who didn't seem to either, including quite a number of gay and lesbians. My hairdressers were gay men, and I deliberately sought them out as hairdressers, for they created more interesting haircuts than young women the same age. I was even a hair model in the local competitions in Wellington for a gay hairdressing couple in the late 80's. Those two men are both dead from AIDS, by the way. When I moved to Sydney in 1990, I found myself another gay hairdresser and reacted with, oh how wonderful to a friend that came out gay to me. That same friend, a year later, I stayed up with all night trying to get him to see reasons to live as he admitted that his plan was to come over and then go kill himself. Earlier this year, when I visited my sister and her husband in Sydney, I met up with a lesbian friend and her si

Who will inherit the earth?

An old fashioned Christian Family A Modern Family These relationships are not equivalent and it is absurd to try and pretend that they are.

Merry Christmas!

Thank you to every one that visits and reads this blog, and especially to those that comment. I have enjoyed interacting with you all, even though some of you might be profoundly annoying. I hope that you all have a wonderful day today, and that the Christ Child might be born in your hearts, if He doesn't live there already. Merry Christmas!

No Virginia, the Christ Child didn't have congenital syphilis

Countdown to Christmas replete with seasonal silliness. Here is a beauty, the implication that the gifts of the Magi, the gold frankinsense and myrrh were in fact an eye ointment . To be fair having introduced syphilis into the stable the writer does posit "(t)his theory is, of course, speculative in the extreme" . The flaws in " this theory " and the article that contains it are manifest, c'est Noel circa 2012. And then from the sidebar this . A comic's claim that the Nativity story is stolen from that of Mithras, high on humour and short on historical vericity. It matters not - it's seasonal filler. Of course there are other birthdays around this time of year, of other historical figures and myths people might weave ......

Dawkins Scare Little Children

Richard Dawkins' latest rant against religion is actually a good example of the evil he speaks about.  He becomes guilty of the same sin, if only he was rational and logical enough to understand it. Firstly, Dawkins view of Catholic theology is terribly flawed and incomplete. What he presents is only a weak caricature of Catholic Theology and focuses on the aspect of hell. Then he weaves that in with stories of the stereotypical pedophile priest. He reveals he was fondled once by a Latin schoolteacher. He doesn't bother to clarify, so the reader can assume the Latin Schoolteacher was a Catholic Priest in his spare time. So the nub of his argument is that it is child abuse to teach children the Catholic religion because it is a form of mental abuse to scare people about going to hell. That form of mental abuse is worse, he suggests, than the sexual abuse, and he'd be all for the ruin of the church on lawsuits alone if he didn't hate lawyers slightly more. He

Benedict XVI: The Church supports families and values

ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS BENEDICT XVI ON THE OCCASION OF CHRISTMAS GREETINGS TO THE ROMAN CURIA ~ Vatican Cue, outrage ... Pope Benedict Takes Anti-Gay Marriage To New Level In Christmas Speech On Family Values from the Huffington Post. Except that same-sex marriage is not mentioned in the speech, though it could be derived from what the Holy Father is saying about the nature of man himself. On the family, the full paragraphs: The great joy with which families from all over the world congregated in Milan indicates that, despite all impressions to the contrary, the family is still strong and vibrant today. But there is no denying the crisis that threatens it to its foundations – especially in the western world . It was noticeable that the Synod repeatedly emphasized the significance, for the transmission of the faith, of the family as the authentic setting in which to hand on the blueprint of human existence. This is something we learn by living it with others and suffering it

Dusting St Peter's for Christmas

Video set to gorgeous music.

Hekia Parata is being savaged in the Dom Post this morning [UPDATE]

I've voted for Hekia Parata, as she has been the National candidate for the Mana Electorate for the number of years, or so. Around mid-year, we generally get a Happy Matariki card and calendar, with a picture of Hekia Parata and John Key on one side. Strangely enough, though, we never get a Happy Christmas message. I would have though Christmas would be a far more important time of year to acknowledge than Matariki. To me, that misjudgement typifies Hekia Parata's style, what she focuses on and thinks important isn't in step with the mainstream. Not that I'm mainstream, but I think most people in NZ would rank Christmas much higher up the festival scale than Matariki. So, here's Tracy Watkins with a devastating article on Hekia Parata. I almost feel sorry for her. When Hekia Parata was promoted to the education portfolio, she was pegged by some as a future leader , ruffling a few feathers among her colleagues. All the ingredients were there - a rags to r

Why The Rainbow?

I note that St Matthews in the City has another billboard this year (which I won't bother posting an image of) which depicts the baby Jesus with a rainbow halo around his head, and (they say) begging the question of how do we know Jesus wasn't gay? It made me think: why is the rainbow now a "gay" sign?  I still take issue with the gay crowd trying to appropriate it is as their symbol. Why should they? What has a rainbow got to do with same-gender sexual conduct? Nothing really; in fact, in the Bible it is given as a symbol from God to his people that he will never destroy the Earth by flood again - "God said, “This is the sign of the covenant which I am making between Me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all successive generations; I set My bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a sign of a covenant between Me and the earth.“It shall come about, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow will be seen in the cloud, and I will remembe

Employing married women and Stuff Nation posts

Stuff Nation posted a story on a man not employing married women, and saying that they should be home raising their children instead , gained a bit of notoriety and generated discussion on talkback shows a few days ago.  Soon after, David Farrar posted about it and another opinion post, complaining that about these sorts of opinion type posts from Stuff Nation mascarding as news items devalue the work of the Stuff journalists. But here’s an example of what I was complaining about. I follow NZ Stuff Politics on Twitter . My expectation is that tweets from that account will be linking to stories written by journalists on politics. One tweet this afternoon was : Call for new Education Minister I clicked through on this, thinking it was a significant story. That a lobby group or school or union or MP had called for a new Education Minister. Instead the link was to this Stuff Nation story . It was basically a letter to the editor, or a short piece by a reader called Peter Condon t

The end of the world explained, it's like 31 Dec, 1999

The world is not going to end, it's just a calendar click over, kind of similar to our change from 31 December, 1999 to 1 January, 2000. There was a bit of worry about the year 2000 bug, but luckily programmers around the world worked really hard to ensure that the apocalypse that might have been, didn't happen. If you are still worried, read Jimmy Akin's explanation of the Maya Calendar . You'll feel much better.

Ruminations on Blogging and Links to Blogs

I started blogging in early 2005 on the now defunct blog, Sir Humphrey's. A couple of years later I moved to this blog and soon after, Sir Humphrey's died, with some of the remaining bloggers moving over to No Minister. Generally bloggers are quite a helpful bunch. Most will link to other blogger that post regularly on their sites, unless that particular person trolls or they have a major aversion to them. If you look at my sidebar, you'll see quite a few sites that I do not agree with, but that I have some sort of history with, so I link. Bloggers normally link to other sites, as we all benefit when this is done. Over the last few years, live updates showing the latest post of linked blogs has greatly enhanced the blogging experience. I've noticed quite a few readers use this blog to keep an eye out for new posts of interest in our sidebar. It's unusual for blogs not to have a sidebar of blogs. When I was at Sir Humphrey's, which was a very popular

Sandy Hook killer was a Satanist

Now it all starts to make sense. The mother and the children killed would have been sacrifices to the devil before the sacrifice of his own life. The Sandy Hook gunman worshiped the devil and had an online page dedicated to Satan, a former classmate revealed, as his childhood barber recalls Adam Lanza never spoke and would stare at the floor every time he had his hair cut. Lanza's worshiping page had the word 'Devil' written in red, Gothic-style letters against a black background, Trevor L. Todd told The National Enquirer, something which he said was 'weird' and 'gave him the chills'. The FBI are trying to piece together his smashed up hard drive to see if his online footprint will reveal any motive for the killing, but they strongly believe he made use of devil-worshiping and suicide sites and boasted of his murder plans on message forums. My younger son came across a teenage Satanist on Instagram. She had tried to commit suicide a number of times,

John Key in a mock gay marriage ceremony [UPDATE]

Added to an article on the inablity of Hekia Parata to listen to warnings by board members and education experts over the closure of Nelson's Salisbury School, is a small addition over the way Prime Minister of New Zealand, John Key, spends his time. It emerged yesterday that he had been doing a round of private radio station Christmas appearances on the day Ms Longstone's resignation was announced, and took part in a "mock" gay marriage ceremony . What the heck was this "mock" gay marriage ceremony about? Was it some sort of renewal ceremony to ensure John Key's compliance and leadership of National in helping Labour's Louisa Wall's same sex marriage bill will pass? The mind boggles as to why the Prime Minister would spend the time to participate in a "mock" ceremony, if there weren't some other purpose in mind. Also, why "mock", rather than mock in the article. If it's not a real ceremony, then mock without t

Are guns really the problem?

In aftermath of the Newtown shooting of children and teachers in the United States, not everyone is thinking about guns being the problem. What about policies around how those who are mentally ill are cared for? The debate on gun control may be a good one if it reminds us once again exactly who these shooters are. Rather than focusing exclusively on guns themselves, the debate will be fruitful if we begin to pay closer attention to those who are committing these violent acts. A true commitment to social justice demands that we begin to take notice of the real health and safety needs of the mentally ill living among us. While progressives claim the moral high ground in their calls for gun control, they tend to ignore the fact that progressive policies on mental illness may have contributed to this dark day in Newtown. For more than 40 years, we have been defining down the risks posed by the violent mentally ill . Dismissing the potential for violence within the population of the m

The Pope Tweets

Pope Benedict XVI's English tweet page is @Pontifex .  He currently has over 1,229,000 followers. His tweets so far from last week have been: Dear friends, I am pleased to get in touch with you through Twitter. Thank you for your generous response. I bless all of you from my heart. How can we celebrate the Year of Faith better in our daily lives? By speaking with Jesus in prayer, listening to what he tells you in the Gospel and looking for him in those in need How can faith in Jesus be lived in a world without hope? We can be certain that a believer is never alone. God is the solid rock upon which we build our lives and his love is always faithful Any suggestions on how to be more prayerful when we are so busy with the demands of work, families and the world? Offer everything you do to the Lord, ask his help in all the circumstances of daily life and remember that he is always beside you This post is inspired by Whale Oil's promotion of a

Christmas is not a pagan holiday [UPDATE]

This is the time of year when we are told that Christmas is really a pagan holiday that was taken over by the Christians in ancient Rome in order to replace paganism with their own beliefs. Atheists love this and are happy to promote this idea because it reduces the historical certainty of the entry of Christ into our world, and erodes the credibility of Christianity as a whole if it's just paganism transformed into something slightly different. Some Christians also believe that the origins of Christmas are pagan, following in the footsteps of the old Puritans who hated celebrations of any kind, but I hope that if they investigate they will realise that nothing could be further from the truth. There are two major arguments: that Christmas somehow copied the Roman feast week of Saturnalia, celebrated December 17-23, or that Christmas replaced the birth of the Roman Sun god, that had been celebrated on December 25. Both are ridiculous, as you shall see. Let's start with S

Same sex divorce ramifications highlight ridiculousness of the redefinition of marriage

Gay partners who have an affair with someone of the same sex will not be able to use adultery as grounds for divorce because the legal definition involves intercourse between a man and a woman. Under the government’s plans, same-sex couples will also be unable to annul their marriages on the basis of non-consummation, for similar reasons. However, heterosexual married couples will continue to be able to use adultery and non-consummation as grounds for divorce, a discrepancy which lawyers said amounted to “clear discrimination”. The Government has suggested that creating an equivalent of adultery and non-consummation for same-sex relationships would change the law “unnecessarily”. It's like watching a train crash in slow motion. Some one in New Zealand pre-empted same-sex marriage coming in a number of years back as consummation being necessary for a real marriage in law was removed at some point in the distant past, so we are not getting the debate delving into areas that

Glynn's been gazumpted

Silly season. And an annual presser from St Matthews in the city: Was Jesus Gay? Controversial Christmas billboard at St Matthew-in-the-City Poor Revs Glynn and Clay. Powershop got in before them with the gay thing this year. What a yawn.......

Attacks on Children

Whilst 20 children were gunned down in Connecticut, 22 children were also stabbed in Chenpeng Village Primary School in the Henan province. Thankfully none were killed, but some have apparently lost fingers and ears. If we take away guns, do we also need to take away knives? I suspect then that such people will turn to using explosives, poisons and improvised weapons. It's very disturbing in general that innocent children are being targeted. Perhaps that is the key question to answer, when we begin to search for answers. Although, I think the Boomtown Rats provided one possible answer to that riddle long ago: And he can see no reasons 'Cos there are no reasons What reason do you need to die, die?

Naked Justice

Getting to be old news now , but a high court in New Zealand has upheld the right to go jogging nude in a case involving a naked man who was arrested by police in a forest in the morning. He scared the willies out of a lady who happened to be walking in the forest, and thought perhaps the man might be insane as well as naked, and that would not be a great combo. But the judge thinks it is alright. I guess the next time a man turns up in the backyard of a neighbour with their 6 year old daughter, he can simply claim he was out jogging? But this win is fantastic for my wife, who likes biking without wearing a helmet. The next time she is arrested for riding the bike with a nude head, it's off to the High Court we go, because she can plead that she is a "head naturalist" and declines to wear such items in public places. Sure, you can argue about the need for safety, but don't you tell me a naked man jogging near gorse is a safe activity.

Powershop advertisement offensive to Catholics [UPDATE]

Thanks to John Stringer for pointing it out, in his post: Elton John opposes gay marriage. No, Elton John does not oppose gay marriage, but imagine if his image was being used to advertise that view. It would be propaganda of the worst kind, using a culturally iconic individual to potentially influence people who admire and respect Elton John's opinions with an outright lie. Likewise with this advertisement by a state owned power company, Powershop. Pope Benedict XVI, whether you are Catholic or not, represents in the mind of many, the Church and Church authority. It is highly offensive to use him in this way, to suggest that the Church and he could ever change his mind about the redefinition of marriage, and that he would be right to do so, that his current stance is wrong. Images form subconscious ideas in the mind, that's why so much money is spent on them in advertising, for advertising works. So, Pope Benedict XVI in a picture approving of a same-sex "ma

Catholic Hobbits

With Hobbit fever having gripped the capital of New Zealand, I thought I'd just point out that J.R.R Tolkien was Catholic and the world that the Hobbits inhabit is full of Catholic themes and ideas and symbols. The new film “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” (opening Dec. 14) has got action and adventure galore, just like “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy that preceded it. But the director and actors who worked on the movie are well aware of the deeper themes that lie at the heart of the work of J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973), who authored all the original books, published between 1937 and 1955. At a recent press conference about the film in New York City, Richard Armitage, who portrays the Dwarf warrior Thorin Oakenshield, said, “One of the things I find when I look into that book [The Hobbit] is a sense of Tolkien’s Catholicism, his Christianity – not necessarily in a denominational way, but in terms of his chivalric view of the world, his nobility which is expressed through kindn

Pope Benedict is on Twitter and I am one of his followers [UPDATE]

Pope Benedict XVI now has an English language Twitter account (no tweets yet) and I just joined as one of his more than 300,000 followers.  I forgot to keep track of which follower number, specifically, and the numbers are rolling on too quickly to even hazard a guess, except I think it may have been somewhere in the 312,000 range. The Twitter Blog has a welcome post for the Pope's account : Welcome Pope Benedict XVI . It looks like it's all being set up for now, with the first tweet on December 12 or 13, depending on the time it goes out from Rome. It will be awesome getting a tweet from the Holy Father, I can't wait! Related link: Pope Benedict's Twitter Account UPDATE at 5:20pm and 317,417 followers : Whispers in the Logia has published the Holy See Press Office's "Explanatory Note": The Pope’s presence on Twitter is a concrete expression of his conviction that the Church must be present in the digital arena. This initiative is best