Monday, July 24, 2006

Let's stay out of Israel's war!

Concerning the recent violent clashes between the state of Israel and the Hezbollah militia stationed in Lebanon, what role(if any) should the United States play within the current conflict? My opinion is the same as Pat Buchanan's in flat out stating that "No, this is not 'our war'". It's Israel's war plain and simple. Hezbollah has attacked Israel, not America. America has absolutely no vital interests at stake within the region (unless you consider cheap oil a vital interest), so we should stay out. We already have problems in concern to Iraq, we don't need any more. Quite frankly, I feel America should not get involved in the Middle East period! It's caused us far too many unnecessary geo-political headaches.

One thing I find particularly ironic is how just a year ago, George W. Bush was praising Lebanon as a true beacon for democracy in the Middle East.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Switzerland - A Folkish model state

As a Christian who believes in original sin and the fallen nature of man, I cannot believe in any form of utopia (at least one created by man himself). However, if one country in the world today represents my own socio-political idyll, that country would have to be Switzerland. Why is this so? Several reasons really...

The Swiss model of government for one thing is based upon decentralized control (in full compliance with the principle of subsidiarity outlined in Catholic Social Doctrine); which of course means that much of the power is concentrated at the local level, which helps limit the potential of the abuse of such powers. So the Swiss certainly do not have to deal with the nonsense of 'big government' that other Western democracies have to.

Also unlike other Western societies, the Swiss system of democracy works because it is built upon organic communities which are of course small and local-based. This only helps to promote a genuine sense of patriotism among the Swiss people; a sense of patriotism that is quite different from the fraud of statist nationalism, which has plagued the world for too long.

This is quite the contrast with other Western societies (especially American society), which have basically destroyed any and all organic communities on the local level through several social programs, such as suburbanization. The destruction of these natural communities has only served to further any sense of genuine patriotism and national pride within Western societies; which has opened the door to the crisis of mass-immigration and multiculturalism that plague us today.

Not only that, the Swiss military, which is based upon an armed citizenry, avoids the two statist extremes of having a professional military or conscription. Not to mention, the Swiss army altogether kicks butt!

John Zmirak, whose website I just recent added to my links, wrote an astonishing article which provides us with a very good picture of how the Swiss system operates and what lessons we Traditionalists and other folkish-minded people can learn from its example. Zmirak also makes mention of how the social and economic philosopher Wilhelm Ropke(whose ideas I've only recently became interested in) upheld Switzerland as a model of how any true free society should organize andconducty itself.

My only problem with Zmirak's article is his constant praise for "middle-class" capitalism, but I'll have to articulate that in another post.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Pope prefers Medieval music for mass

[I can't say how much this makes me smile! This has to be one of the best things Pope Benedict has done for the Church so far in his pontificate. Maybe now we shall see a return to Catholicism in its true form.]

Silence modern music in church, says Pope
By Malcolm Moore in Rome
(Filed: 27/06/2006)

The Pope has demanded an end to electric guitars and modern music in church and a return to traditional choirs.

The Catholic Church has been experimenting with new ways of holding Mass to try to attract more people. The recital of Mass set to guitars has grown in popularity in Italy; in Spain it has been set to flamenco music; and in the United States the Electric Prunes produced a "psychedelic" album called Mass in F Minor.

However, the use of guitars and tambourines has irritated the Pope, who loves classical music. "It is possible to modernise holy music," the Pope said, at a concert conducted by Domenico Bartolucci the director of music at the Sistine Chapel. "But it should not happen outside the traditional path of Gregorian chants or sacred polyphonic choral music."

Read more here: Telegraph News

Many young students are choosing to stay virgins

[This is certainly good news to read, apparently there's a strong minority of Christian students who are choosing to follow the path of sexual purity over against the laxed morals of today's society. Certainly they are following Pope Benedict's calls for Christians to be the 'creative minority' to help revive society as a whole.]

Students make case for virginity
A confident minority choose chastity, going against the grain of popular culture.

By Mary Beth McCauley | Correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor

You won't find Cristina Barba's shorts advertising "JUICY" across the backside. Nor will her necklines plunge or her belly button make an appearance. And when she dates, the 22-year-old Penn State grad may part with a simple kiss. But that's it. She's saving herself for marriage and doing whatever it takes to hold true to her intentions.

Ms. Barba is an alien, it seems, in a culture draped in ever more aggressive layers of sexuality. By many accounts, the random hookup has become this generation's peck on the cheek.

According to Nichole Murray-Swank, an assistant professor at Loyola College in Maryland, general surveys as well as her own research indicate that 70 percent of 19-year-olds have had sexual intercourse. Just last month, a study in the American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) even called into question an earlier statistical link between virginity pledges, first popularized by Christian groups, and a delay in teen sex.


Virgins seem to have gotten lost in the numbers. But a confident minority do still choose virginity, their decisionmaking seemingly impervious to statistical expectations or the imprimatur of popular culture.

Many of them are motivated by religious beliefs. Ms. Murray-Swank, who tracks spirituality, religion, and sexuality in adolescents and adults, has found that those who regularly worship, pray, and consider themselves religious see sexuality as part of a broad faith journey. Their views are often shaped since childhood by church and home. "Most major world religions do tend to encourage abstinence," Ms. Murray-Swank says, and the more religiously conservative the believer, the less the likelihood of sex before marriage. The correlation between abstinence and strong religious belief is "robust, persistent, and consistent over time," she says.

Paul Wiegner, like many young people, seeks to live a service-oriented life, an outlook that influences his personal relationships and his sexual activity. A student at Eastern University, a Christian liberal arts school in suburban Philadelphia, Mr. Wiegner was raised by missionary parents in Bolivia and Costa Rica, and belongs to both Baptist and Mennonite congregations. Wiegner says his pacifist, Mennonite side frames his moral decisionmaking. When asked by an 11th-grade Spanish teacher to write a personal statement, he recalls, he included the intention to save sex for marriage. "When I'm in a relationship, it's always in the back of my mind," he says.

The call to chastity is an offshoot of his attempt to model his life on Jesus, adds Wiegner, who aims to work in mediation or conflict resolution. "I've tried to center my life around serving others and serving God, and being a virgin fits into that," he says. "I don't see it as a bunch of rules to follow, but a lifestyle to lead."

Read more here: Christian Science Monitor

This blog is back!

Hey, after my long absence I have returned to blogging. I must say these past few weeks have been very trying. Basically I've been going through a long bout of mental burnout. Among the most tragic events to happen recently was the sudden death of a friend I knew in childhood.

So yes, I have returned.