Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Fareed Zakaria Makes Sense

The Future of Freedom by Fareed Zakaria was one of the best books I've read this millennium, and I'm happy to see that, despite his past association with some leading neocons and his being wrong about Iraq, he's correct about the "hysteria over Iran"─Stalin, Mao And … Ahmadinejad?

Happily, the article ends with a dissing of Bernard Lewis, who offered a blurb of praise for Mr. Zakaria's book linked to above, for his "op-ed in The Wall Street Journal predicting that on Aug. 22, 2006, President Ahmadinejad was going to end the world:"
    The date, he explained, "is the night when many Muslims commemorate the night flight of the Prophet Muhammad on the winged horse Buraq, first to 'the farthest mosque,' usually identified with Jerusalem, and then to heaven and back. This might well be deemed an appropriate date for the apocalyptic ending of Israel and if necessary of the world" (my [Zakaria's] emphasis). This would all be funny if it weren't so dangerous.
Of course, the patriots at Antiwar.com are unwavering in their making of sense─Attacking Iran for Israel? by Ray McGovern and For Neocons, Iran Aim Is Still Regime Change by Gareth Porter.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Gwangju City's Weolsandong Catholic Parish

This charming little church with exquisite stained-glass windows is typical of the new parishes one finds in the many new, planned residential areas that have sprung up all over Korea in the past decade─천주교광주월산동성당.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Blessed Teresa Cejudo

A mother of a 10 year-old daughter among the thousands murdered by those darlings of the Left, the Spanish Republicans─Granddaughter recounts moving story of grandmother’s martyrdom in Spain. Her story:
    “She was very strong at that time,” [granddaughter Pilar] Caballero continued. “She said goodbye to her only daughter, my mother, and she was shot last because that was what she requested. She asked not to have her eyes covered, she wanted to die looking at death in the face, which she did not fear, because she was dying for God. She encouraged her seventeen companions not to deny God or their faith.”

    “My mother always told us about the visits to the prison during that month. She said she never imagined something so traumatic was going to happen. When they told her to say goodbye to her mother, she thought they were going to move her somewhere else. In fact, they told my mother they were going to move her. The only thing she said, being a small girl of course, was that she wanted to go with her,” Caballero said.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Efficiency, Schmefficiency

Benjamin Terrall, from his review of Bill McKibben's book─'Deep Economy' a Sobering, Necessary Read:
    McKibben writes of the U.S. obsession with "efficiency": "On its altar we have sacrificed a great deal: our small farms were inefficient compared with factory farms; our local retailers were inefficient compared with working more hours. Relationships were inefficient compared with things. And in a certain, limited sense, each of these ideas is correct. If you leave certain factors (pollution, say, and unhappiness) out of account, we've built a society more efficient than any the world has ever seen." And though industrial agriculture supports a system that provides starvation wages or, in the case of some areas of Brazil that McKibben looks at, slave labor, "if people were paid more along the way, that efficiency would be compromised."

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Priests vs. Samsung

South Korea's Catholic Priests’ Association for Justice has a new target─Priests’ association vows to stamp out corruption at Samsung.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Ron Paul's First Action as President

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Was the A-Bombing of Nagasaki a Deliberate Attack on Catholicism?

I've heard the claim before, but never from someone as eminent as His Eminence Giacomo Cardinal Biffi, quoted here by Sandro Magister─Nagasaki, the City of the Atomic Bomb – And of the Christian Martyrs:
    We can certainly assume that the atomic bombs were not dropped at random. So the question is inevitable: why is it that for the second slaughter, out of all the possibilities, that very city of Japan was chosen where Catholicism, apart from having its most glorious history, was also the most widespread and firmly established?
Whatever the answer to the question may be, the fact remains that on August 9th, 1945, "two thirds of the small but vibrant Japanese Catholic community disappeared in a single day." Two thirds! (Κύριε, ελέησον, Χριστέ, ελέησον, Κύριε, ελέησον.) Keeping in mind that Urakami Cathedral (dedicated to Mary, Mother of God, and at the time the largest church in the Far East) was the sighting target, and that Truman the War Criminal, the 33rd president, was first a 33° Freemason, one begins to wake up and smell the brimstone.

The rest of the article deals with Father Petro Kassui Kibe and his 187 Companions (orate pro nobis), to be beatified next month. For more on my thoughts on one of my most beloved cities, do a search for "Nagasaki" at the top left of this blog or read this post and its links─Nagasaki, Mon Amour.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Boycott Sierra Nevada Beer!

To the company's pretentions to "the promotion of children’s and family issues," Jeff Culbreath suggests that "children are not particularly well-served by killing them" and that "that families are not particularly well-served by eliminating their youngest members"─A Response From Sierra Nevada Brewing Company.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Some Ideas Are More Worthy of "Tolerance" Than Others

Father John Flynn on "laws that require [Christians] to treat homosexuality as equal to heterosexuality"─Imposing "Tolerance". Who'd have thought two decades ago that this would be the issue with which they'd nail us? This is, as of yet, but a "soft" incarnation of The Humanitarian with the Guillotine, but how soon will it be before The Catholic Faith is simply declared illegal?

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Messieurs Bush and Greene

Joseph Pearce uses the "dangerous naïveté" of "President Bush’s invocation of Alden Pyle" as an entry into a fascinating exploration of the complex faith of a great writer─The Unquiet Graham Greene.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Spengler Wants More War

"The West has no choice but to attack Iran," concludes the pseudonymous Asia Times Online columnist, whom some have speculated may be Henry Kissinger─ When you can't deal with the devil.

Of course, I disagree with and am disgusted by his opinion, but he's usually been correct in his predictions, which means the war will likely occur soon. He begins, "A year later than I expected, the drumroll has begun towards a Western attack on Iran's nuclear capability." He says that "the American media are slow to grasp how profoundly the landscape has shifted during the past week." Almost two years ago, he "predicted 'war with Iran on the worst terms'" and now believes "that is what the West is likely to get." He says "it's worth it" even while acknowledging that "this attack will destabilize the entire region, past the capacity of the king's horses and king's men to reassemble it."

I fail to see how Iran, even the possibility of a nuclear Iran a decade from now, poses any threat to America, especially if we were to return to United States non-interventionism as advocated by Dr. Ron Paul, which, the good doctor reminds us, was The Original American Foreign Policy.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Monday, October 29, 2007

I Approve Ron Paul's Message

In his second New Hampshire ad, the good doctor reminds us that he's "the only one in either party who's pledged to bring our troops home from Iraq immediately" and that "once we stop wasting trillions overseas, we can cut the budget and still help people who need it:"
[link via LewRockwell.com Blog]

Labels: , , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Inquisition, What a Show!

Or, rather, what a black legend, as this article linked to by Tea at Trianon demonstrates─No One Expects the Spanish Inquistion!

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Wal-Mart Would Not Be Wal-Mart in a Free Market

John Médaille explains something the folks at LewRockwell.com seem to often ignore─Subsidizing Wal-Mart.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Stephen Hand Interviewed

His answers are those I might give, if I were as articulate─Traditional Always, Traditonalist No, Modernist Never: A Brief Correspondence.

Labels:

Bookmark and Share

Another Austrian Patriot Blessed

Bookmark and Share

Catholic Japan

Hope is, after all, a theological virtue─After fatalism, Japan opens to faith. Japan's so-called Catholic Century, the heyday of the Kirishitan, was but a mere four centuries ago. For the country's place in my own journey of faith, see this earlier post of mine─Nagasaki and Me.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

The Young Fogey on Religion and Politics

Bookmark and Share

Of Course Seoul Wants Us Here

This news from South Korea's main leftist organ comes as no surprise─Seoul wants U.S. troops to remain in Korea after Korean peace treaty. This article by yours truly explains how the world's twelfth largest economy benefits by being a protectorate─America's Entangling East Asian Alliances.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Absurd Horror of Abortion

Dave of Intimations has an excellent post based on an article by a writer who is confident that "given advances in ultrasound and other medical technology which testify to the humanity of the unborn, we will eventually come to reject abortion with the same vehemence we now denounce slavery"─How will future generations view abortion?

The author invisions a museum that would "buy up a 20th-century hospital building as its space, and take visitors round, showing them how, in one ward, staff were trying to save the lives of premature babies while, in the next, they were killing them."

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Gwangju City's Bukdong Catholic Parish

This gem of a church from 1937 has Traditional Latin Mass written all over it─천주교광주북동성당.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Live Free Or Die

Dr. Ron Paul's first campaign ad is simple, frugal, and to-the-point:
[link via The New Beginning and League of the Scarlet Pimpernel]

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

A Confucian Libertarian 'Blog

In my post a few days back about the Chinese Austrians I encountered after my article Ron Paul Tzu, I failed to mention the man whose email introduced them to me, the "Confucian Libertarian" from Australia behind Bianzhengnazi's Blog.

Here are two of his outstanding posts among many─Scientism: The Fatal Conceit and How Real Capitalism is the Opposite of Consumerism.

In that second post, he makes this startling, and in my opinion absolutely accurate, claim that "the West today may be considered a decadent net-value consumer in material economic goods, feeding off the value creation, savings and thrift of Asia, and giving not enough (materially or otherwise) in return."

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Blessed Are the Peacemakers



Pictured above is the Austrian conscientious objector who was guillotined for refusing to serve Hitler's war machine─Franz Jägerstatter beatified by church in Linz ceremony. Also pictured above is his 94-year-old widow, Franziska, who attended her husband's beatification.

[Images from Katolische Kirche in Oberösterreich.]

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

When (Artificial) Beauty Bores

Cho Se-hyon reports on something that my wife told me a while back, "that an increasing number of television commercials are turning to 'ugly girls,' presumably to attract the attention of more viewers"─Plastic Surgery Craze (II).

Labels:

Bookmark and Share

Gwangju City's Modern Catholic Churches

Bookmark and Share

El Cid's List

Here it is─Incomplete List of Ron Paul Blogs. Xenophiles will be particularly interested in the international list.

Labels:

Bookmark and Share

A Bit of the British Empire in Korea

Anglophiles will enjoy Robert Koehler's latest photo-essay, which takes him to a very remote island with a British cemetary─Old Port Hamilton.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Taking Up the Habit in China

The Crunchy Con links to a delightful tale of "[a] middle-aged Western journalist living in China [who] decides to do like many, many Chinese men and start smoking"─All the Tobacco in China.

When I visited China ten years ago, I, too, took up the habit after having been a non-smoker for a couple of years. It seemed the thing to do, and I enjoyed it. I quit soon after my return to Korea.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

America Is About to Get an Education

Bookmark and Share

Godwardness Online

Bookmark and Share

We're Doomed

"From Turkey to Iraq to Pakistan, the mounting chaos proves the White House is just winging it," observes Juan Cole─The Collapse of Bush’s Foreign Policy.

Michael S. Rozeff notes that the potential blowback from this incompetent administration's actions should cause alarm for all patriots─On Track for U.S. Collapse.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Real Isolationism

Bookmark and Share

Something for Alpinists

These two Kiwis are now nearing my neck of the Korean woods in their historic trek─Two New Zealand hikers pioneer Korea's mystical mountain trail.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

But One Murdered Monk

From Burmese exiles a plea "to make these images known to as many people as possible, so that the world knows that simple condemnation of these bastards [the junta] is not enough"─THE HORRENDOUS PHOTOS OF SHAME.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

We're Back

From their trip to Everland have returned the Pohang Snyders. It was a great trip.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Light Blogging Ahead

No, I'm not going on a Culbreathian Blogfast. Rather, the Pohang Snyders are taking a vacation. I may be able to post, but regular posting will resume at the end of the week.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Ron Paul's Answers

Bookmark and Share

Distributivism in Asia

Bookmark and Share

Town and Country

El Cid's vision─The Way Things Should Be - Home. An excerpt:
    I love land, I believe land is tied directly to home, hearth, kirk and kin. Land should mean something, it is the sort of thing a family should identify with, love and cherish. The hundreds of thousands of acres occupied by suburbs and the ancillary strip malls and wal-marts that service them mean nothing. These places will be sold when the current owners die - these are not family treasures they are "investments".

    People should be free to choose their own destiny and become whatever they want. I do not dislike people that want to work in jobs that are urban in nature. I do not believe a society and culture can long sustain our current lifestyle. These people are not free to destroy in their pusuit of happiness.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Monday, October 22, 2007

Collateral Damage?

"The body of Ali Hamed, who was killed in a raid in Baghdad by U.S. troops, is prepared to be washed for burial in the Shiite holy city of Najaf"─US: Raid of Baghdad's Sadr City kills 49. Same age and size as my son.

Jesu, mercy, Mary, pray.

The Goyaesque image, reminiscent of The Disasters of War, is a reminder of why we must never, ever, undertake a war unless it is absolutely necessary.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Dollar, Almighty No More

A report from Korea on another of President Bush's legacies─U.S. Shaken by Weakening Dollar. I agree with Joseph Sobran, "The Reactionary Utopian," as to the identity of Our Worst Enemy.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Oil Peaked Last Year

Now begins The Long Emergency about which James Howard Kunstler wrote─Steep decline in oil production brings risk of war and unrest, says new study.

As evidence, the The Korea Herald's top story today is the effect of the more than 40% increase in the cost of crude within the past six months─Lofty oil price threatens economy.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Naju's Noan Catholic Parish

A pretty little church dating from 1927, but tragically wreckovated with childish stained-glass windows and the most appalling crucifix I've ever seen─천주교나주노안성당.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Lucky Dube, Rest in Peace

"He was dropping his teenage son and daughter off in a Johannesburg suburb when he was attacked by car thieves"─Fans Across World Shocked and Saddened Over Reggae Star Shooting. Shot dead on the pavement in front of his children.

Here's a video clip of my favorite song of his, the title track to Lucky Dube - Prisoner (1989), an anti-crime message with ironic images of the singer committing the same crime from which he died:


    They won't build no schools anymore,
    They won't build no hospitals.
    All they build will be prisons, prisons,
    All they build will be prisons, prisons.
From Cameroon, Njei Moses Timah, noting that Dube was "killed in the same way as his idol Peter Tosh," came across the singer at the same time and for the same reason I did─Africans Mourn Reggae Star:
    The first time I heard the music of Lucky Dube was in 1988 shortly after criminals had cut short the life of Peter Tosh, a popular reggae star in Jamaica, in a similar way. Lucky Dube's style of reggae bore a close resemblance to Tosh's. This nostalgic link to Tosh is what pushed me to make more research into the music of Lucky Dube.

    I soon found that the rhythm of Lucky Dube's reggae was very pleasing to the ear. In addition, the lyrics of his songs carried potent messages that decried the injustices of our world. For reggae fans like me, there was consolation that someone had really emerged to replace Tosh. It will be recalled that Tosh used reggae as a weapon to confront ills such as racism, apartheid and nuclear proliferation.
He died on the eve of Peter Tosh's birthday. Both men were 43, and their killers, though described in the press as robbers, took nothing.

Some reaction from his homeland and further afield─Lucky Dube is dead, murdered — it’s enough to make you scream and Lucky legacy to live in Fiji.

Our prayers are with the family of Lucky Dube.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Louisiana Marsala

From Eunomia, some good news this morning─Jindal Triumphant in Louisiana. He is "the nation's first governor of Indian-American descent and the youngest chief executive of any state." (We share a birthday; he's exactly one year younger than me.)

I've been following the career of the Catholic convert from Hinduism since 2003. Perhaps the most interesting moment was when his wife went into labor and he delivered his own son─Catholic Congressman and Amateur Obstetrician.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

B52 Nuke Story

The milbloggers at the League of the Scarlet Pimpernel bring their learned opinions to the late August incident in which six armed nuclear cruise missiles were flown over the United States in launch opinion─Dr. Strangelove and Re: Dr. Strangelove. They also share some links:

Speculation that the nukes may have been intended "for a tactical strike on an Iranian nuclear processing or research site, or for a 'false flag' type attack"─Nukes Over America: All a Stupid Mistake. Sure It Was.

Speculation that this was to be part of "a U.S. attack on Iran using nuclear and conventional weapons was scheduled to coincide with Israel's September 6 air attack on a reputed Syrian nuclear facility" and that "elements of the Air Force, supported by U.S. intelligence agency personnel, successfully revealed the ultimate destination of the nuclear weapons and the mission was aborted due to internal opposition within the Air Force and U.S. Intelligence Community"─It's About That Mutiny: Air Force Covers Its Tail With Transparent Feathers.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Tomorrow's Memorial


His Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty, Blessed Charles of Austria

God our Father, through the gift of Blessed Emperor Karl You have given us an example to follow. In extremely difficult times he performed his burdensome tasks without ever losing his faith. He always followed Your Son, the true King. He led a humble life, sincerely loving the poor and giving himself heart and soul to the search for peace. Even when his life was in danger he trusted in You, putting his life in Your hands. Almighty and Merciful God, by the intercession of Blessed Emperor Karl, we pray that You may give us his unconditional faith to support us in our most difficult situations, and the courage to always follow the example of Your only Son. Open our hearts to the poor, and strengthen our commitment for peace within our families and among all peoples. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Gender Imbalances

A report that "half as many boys as girls are being born in places around the world"─Are Boys An Endangered Species?

The suspected cause of the imbalance─Dioxin pollution leads to more baby girls: study.

A report on an old story, the opposite problem and its global implications─China's surplus of sons: A geopolitical time bomb.

[links via EnergyBulletin.net]

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Military Men vs. the Military-Industrial Complex

It is instructive to contrast whom they support respectively─Ron Paul Tops for Military Donations and Defense Industry Embraces Democrats, Hillary By Far The Favorite.

[link to second article via the Lew Rockwell.com Blog]

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Friday, October 19, 2007

Farewell, Deborah Kerr

From A conservative blog for peace, news of the passing of the beautiful, redheaded star of two of my favorite films─Actress Deborah Kerr dies at age 86. They don't make actresses like her anymore, nor do they anymore make movies like Black Narcissus (1947) and Quo Vadis (1951).

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

A Marian Holy Day

Today's feast─Inner Life of Mary.

Labels:

Bookmark and Share

Communist Apostasy and Deathbed Conversion

An interesting story from India─Church and Marxists clash over conversion of legislator. The details:
    The Catholic Church in Kerala state and the Marxist state government are at loggerheads over the conversion of a legislator before he died of cancer last year.

    Pinarayi Vijayan, senior leader of Communist Party of India (Marxist), speaking last week at the first death anniversary of Mathai Chacko in Kozhikode city, lashed out at Bishop Mar Paul Chittilapally for saying that the late legislator had converted in his hospital bed before succumbing to cancer.

    Calling the bishop a "liar", and a "wretched creature", Vijayan charged that the bishop's claim was an attempt "to denigrate a true Communist even in death".
Click on the link to read the rest.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Last Gasps of a Dying Nation

As if its astronomically low birthrate (still higher than South Korea's) were not enough, this─Japan: Medical association approves euthanasia.

From the article: "A person can be euthanized if they ask for it in writing, if a review is done by a panel of doctors when the will of the patient is unknown, or if the family is unable to make a decision." How many of these cases will be decided on purely fininacial grounds?

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Bush Checked

Let's pray Srdja Trifkovic is correct─Eurasia Strikes Back: No War With Iran Likely. Notes, the author, "Mr. Putin is effectively helping President George W. Bush avoid an adventure that would bring ruin to all involved, save the promoters of an Islamic end-times scenario."

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The So-Called Two Party System

AnarchoCatholic suggests that "America's current 'two-party' system consists of one 'party,' the global statists─Two Wings of Totalitarian Statism. This note is most important:
    A note on Abortion is warranted. This issue is used by both sides to garner support for their cause, but is not a specter. The dead babies and injured mothers are very real. This makes the establishment's use of abortion as bait all the more despicable. The left cries that abortion rights are being eroded when they really aren't, and the right promises to protect the unborn when they really have no intention of doing so. Of course, many on the right have a very strong intent to protect the unborn, but they are systematically marginalized and their influence nullified. The Partial Birth Abortion Ban, and its passage through the Supreme Court, while a "step in the right direction" is nothing more than a token, I suspect. It keeps the passionate pro-lifers supporting the neoconservative globalization machine, and not completely disillusioned. Would that they were disillusioned enough to defect or revolt!
Whether you call them the The RepubliCrats of The War Party, they amount to the same thing, and whether Hitlery or Ghouliani is elected will make no difference. Concludes AnarchoCatholic, "Thankfully, Ron Paul will change much of this, whether he wins or not."

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Scutellaria barbata

Read this article linked to by Tea at Trianon before you dismiss Chinese medicine as quackery─Can Ancient Herbs Treat Cancer?

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Thursday, October 18, 2007

普洱茶

"This unique tea is only just starting to become known in the Western world"─Pu-erh Tea.

My boss gave me a cake of the pressed leaves today and I'm drinking my first cups as I 'blog. My boss said that he drinks it to reduce his chloresterol, which is an issue for me as well. It's also said to reduce lipids, which might just give my Fatty Liver some relief. My boss said it tasted horrible, but I find its rich, earthy taste better than any Korean, Japanese, or Chinese tea I've ever had.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Boston Confucians or Confucian Bostonians?

"An ancient sage makes a comeback to serve the Communist party’s purposes in China," begins Yenni Kwok─You Can’t Kill Confucius. The article details the comeback after decades in which the reds denounced the philosophy as reactionary. I found this bit interesting:
    During those decades, however, Confucian thought survived overseas and in the periphery of mainland China. New Confucianism movement, which believes the Chinese thought should incorporate Western ideas such as democracy, first emerged among the academics in Hong Kong and Taiwan and later thrived in the United States. The Boston Confucians, with leading figures including Professor Tu of Harvard University, Robert Neville and John Berthrong of Boston University, played a major role in introducing the thought in the West.

    It was during its venture overseas that Confucianism evolved through its encounter with Western thinkers. Professor Tu, who says he is influenced by both Confucian philosophers and Christian theologists like St Augustine and Søren Kierkegaard, has introduced the Confucian idea of ‘salvation’. (This isn’t the first religious encounter; the Neo-Confucians of the Song and Ming dynasties drew greatly from Buddhist thought).
Here are a brief introduction to the group, their manifesto, and a personal reflection on them─Boston Confucians; Boston Confucianism: Portable Tradition in the Late-Modern World ; and Opus Dei and the Boston Confucians.

While on the theme, I would be remiss not to include a link to Jim Kalb's excellent essay which demonstrates that "[w]e [Americans] have lost by our failure to attend to him" and have much to learn from his "way of drawing a workable and highly ethical way of life out of things of a kind found in every society: myth and tradition, natural human impulses, and the practicalities of daily life"─Confucius Today.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Chinese Austrians

My Ron Paul Tzu article has put me in contact with a couple of people of Chinese descent who are interested in the The Austrian School. Also, I've come across two 'blogs by Chinese Austrians─The China Desk and Two Fish's Blog.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Ron Paul's Money

Stephen Dinan, writing for our capital's Moonie newspaper, says "he's now in such a good financial situation that he should be considered one of the top contenders for the Republican presidential nomination"─Ron Paul's stashed cash.

Furthermore, as the only true fiscal conservative in the race, he'll be able to get more bang for the buck than anyone else. Certainly, he won't be paying himself a six-figure salary à la Alan Keyes.

Here's an article explaining whom our men (and, alas, women) in uniform are supporting─Paul leads in donations from military voters, with Obama next.

Finally, Andrew Sullivan offers a map of donations─Ron Paul's America. Most interesting is the fact that first and second in per capita donations are New Hampshire and Washington, D.C.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Paleos Quiz Prez

Professor Clyde N. Wilson in top form─The Presidential Press Conference That Will Never Happen. If only Justin Raimondo, Chilton Williamson, Paul Craig Roberts, William Lind, et. al. would really have the opportunity to pose questions to George Bush.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Naju's Dashi Catholic Parish

Small, simple, and to-the-point─천주교나주다시성당.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

St. Nicholas Cathedral in Famagusta, Northern Cyprus

Bookmark and Share

A Hit from Inner Mongolia

Occidentalism posts the video of a catchy, family-oriented song that's sure to warm the cockles of your heart─Cute Mongolian/Chinese song.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Han Fei Tzu Would Love Modern America

Sinologist Sam Crane's latest post is remarkably perceptive, a must-read if there ever was one─America: A Legalist Society.

He is referring to Legalism, the ancient Chinese school of thought which held that "we are all selfish and venal and that the only way of attaining order and stability in society is through extensive legal regulation of everyday life and, most importantly, harsh punishments applied with no exceptions."

(Interesting that the Chinese pronuciation of "The School of Law" (法家), fa-chia, should sound so close to a similar system first made popular in Italy in the 1920's.)

It was this harsh school of thought focusing on state power that replaced humanistic Confucianism when China was first forged into an empire. Sound familiar, anyone? George Santayana, ¿qué dijo Vd.? I explore the similarities between Imperial China and Imperial America at the end of my article Ron Paul Tzu.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Words Fail When It Comes to Abortion

But Richard Stith attempts to describe the horror and scale of the holocaust─Abortion Is More Than 'Murder'. The first paragraph:
    Suppose we were to find out that over a quarter of the nation's grandparents are killed each year by their teenaged grandchildren, usually through deliberate dismemberment. Wouldn't responses such as "This is murder!" somehow understate the matter? Wouldn't this response be even more inadequate if grandparent-killing had been declared to be a constitutional right?
(Here in South Korea the number would be two-thirds; yes, two babies are chopped up for every one that is born.)

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

What's on Iranian TV



It sounds a lot better than American TV, if we are to judge from the program descriptions listed in this article from the Grey Lady─To Compete, Iranian State TV Adapts. This show, pictured above, will really surprise the neocon propagandists:
    One popular mini-series, called “Zero Degree Turn,” depicts the Iranian Embassy in Paris during World War II, when employees forged Iranian passports for European Jews to flee to Iran. The series is built around a love story between an Iranian-Palestinian man and a Jewish Frenchwoman he helps escape to Iran.

    Scenes of terrified Jewish men, women and children being loaded into trucks by Nazis are arousing feelings of sympathy for Jews at a time when President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has denied the Holocaust.

    But the series has a more subtle message: that there is a difference between Jews and Zionists. One Jewish character, the uncle of the Frenchwoman who escapes to Iran, is depicted as brutal and manipulative. He has ties to Israel.
[link via the Lew Rockwell.com Blog]

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Another Irrational and Amoral Atheist Calls for Mass Murder

He is exposed by the ever-great Justin Raimondo─Christopher Hitchens and Genocide. This comes as no surprise. "If there is no God, then all things are permissible," wrote Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky into the speech of one of his characters, presaging the horrors of the coming century of gas chambers and gulags.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Natural Law, Not Rights

Matthew Roberts on the "rights industry"─The Wrongs of “Rights”. An excerpt:
    Modern rights are creations of the Enlightenment. Created by philosophes, rights were perpetuated (often violently) by revolutionaries, Jacobins, and other radicals. Some based them in nature; others, in the god Reason, or yet others, in the state. But they all adhere to a Procrustean universalism. These rights are “natural, imprescriptible, and inalienable” said the revolutionary French National Assembly in 1789. These ‘rights’, always in opposition to long-standing tradition or community custom, require large governmental, if not international, force to institute their authority.

    For these new rights to exist, they had to supplant the older authority, often with the help of a centralized government to do so. Natural rights eventually replaced ancestral traditions, statute supplanted customary law, and entitlement usurped obligation.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Judy Woodruff Interviews the Good Doctor

Here's something for those interested in "more than a sound bite"─Ron Paul on the PBS NewsHour. What a wonderful man! He has wisdom, sincerity, and charm. Is he really running for president?

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Saint Flannery and Her Christ-Haunted South

Father Jim Tucker quotes an archbishop on one of their and my favorite authors─Archbishop Niederauer on Flannery:
    Paul Elie points out that Flannery O'Connor, a Catholic writer living in and writing about the overwhelmingly Protestant South, often indicated what she thought the Catholic Church and the Protestant South had in common: "the Bible, a religious heritage, an awareness of human limitation, a respect for the concrete and the actual, and a recognition that 'good and evil in every culture tend to be joined at the spine.'"
The book to which His Excellency refers is The Life You Save May Be Your Own, by Paul Elie, one of the best reads I've had in recent years. The book interweaves the biographies of Flannery O'Connor, Walker Percy, Thomas Merton, and Dorothy Day.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Free Market China

Wu Zhong lets us know where it's leading─How bourses bring democracy to China.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

A New Blessèd?

Bookmark and Share

Naomi Wolf, the New Thomas Paine

"This is long but worth it - for most of us this is Civics 101 (simple stuff) but true all the same," says El Cid in linking to an excellent video─Talk By Naomi Wolf - The End of America. "She speaks simply and says 'like' too often but her message is on target."

The video, which outlines the similarities of the current American political situation with the early days of Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia thoughts. The thought came to mind that maybe the neocons are right and it really is 1939, just not in the way they mean it. She mentions the founders with a reverence that was quite surprising and welcome coming from a feminist, a self-described "Short, Jewish girl from New York." She also mentions Thomas Paine several times.

Whenever I look back to the quarter of the 18th Century, I'm struck by how people of different political persuassions worked together for a common cause, and when they disagreed, they could do so with civility. Thomas Jefferson would be paleolibertarian today, and John Adams a paleoconservative. The aforementioned Paine would be a paleoliberal or a radical, yet even as an outsider he helped the cause. Today's "conservatives" and "liberals" couldn't be more different.

If there's an election next year, supporters of Hitlery and Ghouliani will be slinging mud and epithets at each other to no end, never realizing that these two welfare-warfare statist non-choices from The War Party are identical in every way.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

America First! U.S. Out of Asia!

Bookmark and Share

"Heaven is high, and the emperor is far away."

Lionel Chan, a reader of my Ron Paul Tzu article, sends along this fascinating article about the "high degree of de facto freedom under China's nominally 'absolute' monarchy"─Chinese Liberalism vs. Western Authoritarianism.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Anarchy, or Spontaneous Order, on the Streets of the World

Here are some responses to my most recent article, reporting similar experiences in the Philippes, Egypt, Mexico, and small towm America─Anarchy, or Spontaneous Order, on the Streets of Saigon:
    Good article. The same sort of "spontaneous order" prevails on the streets of Manila, which I visited in September. On my first ride in a taxi, I was astounded by the casual disregard for traffic laws: no one drove within the white-striped lines, no one completely stopped at the stop signs, pedicabs and jeepneys merged into traffic without apparent warning. After observing and experiencing these things for a few days, I came to the realization that Manila drivers obey a number of rules hammered out in a decentralized fashion. They use their horns to signal each other, they slow spontaneously to let drivers into the flow of traffic, they constantly make allowances for pedestrians and pedicabs. I saw no accidents whatsoever, even though vehicles pass very close to each other.

    I took some videos from a pedicab meandering through the traffic. My colleagues can hardly believe what they see: it looks like a choreographed dance!

    ─Christopher R. Duggan

    Your article on Saigon traffic was enlightening and fun. It reminded me of an almost 100% similar experience in Cairo some twenty years ago. Cairo is huge. Its streets have no lane lines. Its intersections no stoplights or stop signs. Traffic is noisy, as horns are used in code. The full effect reminded me of corpuscles moving in a bloodstream. Everyone's movement (pedestrians, cars, scooters, bikes) was purposeful and respectful of the presence of others. The big downside was that all the cars have many dings because the close quarters result in many minor touches, but no real damage. Traffic moves slowly, but steadily. No time lost at intersections or in fully stalled traffic. Because the pace is slow by Western standards, there are hardly any serious collisions. Spontaneous order rules!

    Thanks again for a great article.

    ─David Bergland

    I've enjoyed your articles on LewRockwell.com. Today's was particularly interesting because I saw the same phenomenon (greater safety from lack of traffic signals) in Guanajuato, Mexico. I visited this city this past May and found that in the central part of the city, dating from the 16th century, there are no traffic signs. The streets were narrow and winding, with many intersections of multiple streets as you might expect from their origin as horse or donkey trails. Yet, during my three weeks there I saw no accidents, not even a close call. Also, the countless children who are still free to walk to school have no problem crossing streets and have no fear of the cars and motorcycles driving past because the drivers have intelligently adjusted their behavior to accommodate the circumstances.

    If this anecdotal evidence of "order out of chaos" and adjustment of behavior according to circumstances weren't enough, I have also read of a study that has shown that the apparent safety of a vehicle in which someone is driving causes that person to alter his driving style so that the resulting injury from accidents is about equal, no matter the absolute safety of the vehicle's design. In other words, a person driving a Hummer, feeling more safe, will drive more recklessly than someone driving a Toyota Tercel, who will naturally drive more carefully out of a perceived lack of safety built into the vehicle. The end result is that the expected injury rate from an accident is the same for both.

    ─DeMar Southard

    Thanks for the fine article on Lew Rockwell. I thought you might find this amusing:

    Our county recently paved our lightly-traveled gravel rural road. When application of the lovely, smooth-as-glass asphalt was complete, workers hastily put up signs warning, "No Center Stripe." I suppose we're assumed to be so stupid that we wouldn't be able to deduce the absence of a center stripe simply by looking at the road and not seeing one!

    ─Roland Walkenhorst, New Haven, MO
UPDATE: Carlos from Brazil shares his first-hand experience:
    I live in Brazil. My work consists, among other things, of inspecting vehicles that suffered accidents in which someone got hurt. In my town (95,000 people), we have more or less the same kind of "natural order" you talk about (an American friend confided she would not dare driving here), plus a few scattered traffic lights (I never counted them, but it is certainly less than 10 in the whole town, within hundreds of intersections).

    Most traffic accidents with victims (those that I see...) happen in the corners that have street lights.

    A Swiss friend, who was here last week, thought it strange how people who ride bycicles (there are more or less three bikes per car) do not keep to the right side. I told him they go where they fit, and that's it.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

"Ron Paul Tzu" in The Seoul Times

Ron Paul Tzu, my article for LewRockwell.com comparing the good doctor to the Chinese sages of antiquity, has been picked up by The Seoul Times as well─Ron Paul Tzu.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Sage of Kentucky on the Culture of Death

Rod Dreher quotes from an essay in which the author "likened our society's acceptance of abortion to its easy acceptance of capital punishment and war"─Wendell Berry on abortion.
    The issue of abortion, so far as I understand it, involves two questions: Is it kiling? And what is killed?

    It is killing, of course. To kill is the express purpose of the procedure.

    What is killed is usually described by apologists for abortion as "a fetus," as if that term names a distinct kind or species of being. But what this being might be, if it is not a human being, is not clear. Generally, pregnant women have thought and spoken of the beings in their wombs as "babies." The attempt to make a categorical distinction between a baby living in the womb and a baby living in the world is as tenuous as would be an attempt to make such a distinction between a living child and al iving adult. No living creature is "viable" independent of an enveloping life-support system.

    If the creature in the womb is a living human being, and so far also an innocent one, then it is wrong to treat it as an enemy. If we are worried about the effects of treating fellow humans as enemies or enemies of society eligible to be killed, how do we justify treating an innocent fellow human as an enemy-in-the-womb?

    As for the "right to control one's own body," I am all for that. But implicit in that right is the responsibility to control one's body in such a way as to avoid dealing irresponsibly or violently or murderously with other bodies.

    Women and men generally have understood that when they have conceived a child they have relinquished a significat measure of their independence, and that henceforth they must control their bodies in the interest of the child.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Schumacherian Appropriate Technology

Hats off to Popular Mechanics for hosting a conference on the theme─Big Tech Companies Can’t Forget Simple Gadgets, Inventors Say. I, for one, am much more impressed by the super-efficent cookstove and wind generator described in the article than I am by the latest meaningless feature in a cell phone designed to fall apart within eighteen months.

[link via EnergyBulletin.net]

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Hitler's Pope?

Two myth-busting articles today─'Righteous Among the Nations' and Why Pope Pius XII Was Right.

The Hitler's Pope myth has managed to stick despite the author of the book reversing himself in the Economist on Dec. 9, 2004. I can think of no other case in which an author has renounced his own theory and yet that theory has held on so tenaciously. The herd, it seems, desperately wants to believe that holy men like Venerable Pope Pius XII were hypocritical pigs.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Naju's Geum-am Catholic Parish

Here's a cute little parish with a beautiful crucifix, but ugly stations of the cross─천주교나주금암성당.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Pedophile English Teachers in Korea

Allow me to pull a Mark Shea and suggest that this case would have never happened if English teachers in Korea were allowed to marry and if women were allowed to be English teachers in Korea─Wanted Pedophile Taught English in South Korea. Just as the 2002 priest scandal proved beyond doubt the falsity of the Romish religion, so this scandal proves beyond doubt the falsity of the English language.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

A Glimpse Into Musselman Heaven

Here is the "cute part" of a story on a German taken hostage by bandits in Afghanistan─More hostage money in Afghanistan:
    Blechschmidt’s guards smoked hashish and told their prisoner stories about a paradise where they would lie around on tables, served by dwarves carrying jugs of fine wine. When Blechschmidt asked the Pashtun men whether the dwarves were also Muslims (because only the faithful are granted entry into paradise), they were silent. The group, Blechschmidt later reported, was “completely fanaticized.”

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

Ron Paul and the Swiss Confederation

A reader sent along this charming little story that lovers of freedom and good governance might enjoy─Switzerland's president learns about Ron Paul.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Blessed Franz Jägerstätter

Fr. Emmanuel Charles McCarthy on the man "legally killed by the German Military for refusing to kill for the German Military" and what his beatification means─The Man Who Chose To See.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Distributivism on the Streets of Saigon

My second article for LewRockwell.com, an anecdote about "spontaneous order" arising from seeming chaos, will be up soon─Anarchy, or Spontaneous Order, on the Streets of Saigon.

With this post, I want to offer another brief anecdote from my 1997 visit to Vietnam, one that I did not include in the article although it is somewhat related. In Saigon, every private motorbike doubles as a taxi it seems. If you need to get somewhere, you simply signal and within seconds one of the multitudes of young fellows on motorbikes will pull over, ask your destination, and negotiate with you a price.

What is this if not Distributivism? How wonderful to see this small example of the unregulated free market in action, even in a socialist state! It illustrates that the entrepreneurial spirit cannot be crushed, even by state socialism.

G. K. Chesterton famously said, "Too much capitalism does not mean too many capitalists, but too few capitalists." On the streets of a city renamed after a communist, there are a plenitude of capitalists.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Christ Avatar

An interesting story from Nepal─The crucifix a sign of love, even for Hindus.

I'm reminded of a visit I made to a Hindu home in Singapore, where on the home altar among Lord Ganesh, Lord Vishnu, and other dieties, was a crucifix. Hindu Iconography, by the way, has always interested me.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Those Tolerant Buddhists

Bookmark and Share

Sterile Crops

Support the Catholic development agency Progressio in its fight against "the genetic modification of plants to make their seeds sterile"─Say no to Terminator seeds campaign launched.

On the same theme, another article with a Catholic angle─Columbans warn pro-GM food lobby has eyes on Australia.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

SSPX Schism Healed?

Bookmark and Share

Dr. Ron Paul's Big Tent

The Socialist Case for Ron Paul, made by Jeiel Schalkwijk of the Christian Socialist Party in the Netherlands.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Guaraní Republic's Catholic Socialism

Stephen Hand recounts a fascinating but nearly forgotten chapter of human history─Jesuit Missionary Colonialism---The Untold story. An excerpt:
    Guided by the Jesuits, the Indios had advanced laws, founded free public services for the poor, schools, hospitals, and suppressed the death penalty. A kind of society based on the principles of the primitive Christianity was established. All the inhabitants of the reducciones worked in the "tupambae" lands property of the community, and all the products which they produced were fairly divided among them. The Guaraní were very skilled in handicraft works, sculpture, woodcarving etc.; the reducciones, were the first "industrial" state of the South America. Indeed, such advanced products as watches, musical instruments, etc. were produced. The first typography of the New World was built in the reducciones. The working day was of about 6 hours (in Europe at that time it was 12-14 hours), and the free time was dedicated to music, dance, bow-shot contests and to prayer.
What is described above is nothing less than Catholic socialism, and it seems to me given the circumstanmces and the people, entirely legitimate. That it wouldn't work in the U.S. of A. is both obvious and irrelevant.

Again, it seems time to pull out that quote from His Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty Otto von Habsburg: "...I am a legitimist: I am for legitimate government. You could never have a monarchy in Switzerland, and it would be asinine to imagine Spain as a republic."

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

When Bishops Fail

Stephen Hand has a reminder─One of the Twelve Was Judas...

Labels:

Bookmark and Share

The Young Fogey on Ayn Rand

"Narcissism and social Darwinism. She no more represented the depth and breadth of libertarianism than Jim Bakker did Christianity"─What’s wrong with Ayn Rand.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Monster Che

I neglected to post anything about him on the fortieth anniverssary of his death, sickened as I was by the hagiographic pieces I chanced upon. Dave at Intimations has a great, link-laden post denouncing the monster for what he was─Idolization of a Murder.

Mentioned is the fact the "Che is estimated to have presided over the executions of between at least 200 people, possibly as many as 500." Here's a related quote of his I came across the other day, "We don't need proof to execute a man. We only need proof that it's necessary to execute him."

This quote demands to be countered by Albert Camus what said, "It is the job of thinking people, not to be on the side of the executioners." Those wise words could have been levelled at fellow Frenchman Jean-Paul Sartre, who infamously called Che "our era's most perfect man."

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Taliban and My Tax Money

Reports Massoud Ansari, "Millions of dollars handed over to secure the release of South Korean hostages in Afghanistan have been used to buy weapons deployed against British and American forces in the country, the Taliban claims"─Taliban use hostage cash to fund UK blitz.

I'm working on a long article detailing why the United States should stop covering South Korea's defense and it appears that I have come across another reason.

[link via Occidentalism]

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

An Asymmetric 'Blog

Nelson Guirado is the man behind a new 'blog offering "heterogenous opinion and commentary"─Asymmetric. He came a across mine because of a shared interest in Cuban music, and then learned that we were both Catholic and interested in Korea. (He's learning the language in Los Angeles.)

Says the Iraq vet, "I also want peace and have tried to make Al Qaeda see how useless it would be for them to continue fighting for a Taliban-like state in Iraq." Mr. Guirado has as one of his goals "to begin a moderate club for people who disagree, but aren't nuts." That's a goal I can get behind.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Monday, October 15, 2007

Buddhist Wisdom About the State

A message I received in response to my article─Ron Paul Tzu:
    As a long-time student of Oriental wisdom traditions and culture (and a practicing Buddhist) I very much enjoyed your article. Here's another quote I came across you might enjoy:

    "Governments and royal rule, Ananda, are nuisances like robbers, pestilence, famine, mosquitoes, gnats, and so forth. It is a wise man indeed who has learned to endure them with fortitude." - Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha (ca. 500 BCE)

    Unfortunately, I don't have the reference for it; need to contact a scholar of the Pali Scriptures.

    Andrew Main
Enjoy it I did. Thank you.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Gereja Ortodoks Indonesia

Eastern Orthodox missionary activity made it as far as Java─Interview with the Indonesian Archimandrite.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

President Bush Changed Everything

I'd like to take up the theme expressed in the title of David R. Henderson's latest─How George Bush Changed My Life. Did George Bush change your life, and, if so, how?

My answer is probably the obvious one; he pushed me toward Paleoconservatism and Paleolibertarianism, although I had always been leaning in that direction without knowing it. I thank him for clarifying things when it comes to state power.

His foreign policy has made me ever more convinced of the truth of these words of his from the Presidential Debate - October 12, 2000: "If we're an arrogant nation, they'll resent us; if we're a humble nation, but strong, they'll welcome us."

Finally, more often than should be the case, he has me nodding in agreement with CounterPunch and gritting my teeth at TownHall.com, knowing full well that in a just world the opposite should be the case.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Why I'm not a Priest

I might end up doing something like this─Drunken Mexican priest punches cop.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Brouhaha Over Atwood's Tale

Catholic libertarian Ryan W. McMaken has two excellent posts on the reaction to a Catholic college requiring freshman to read the book─Catholic Hysteria over The Handmaid's Tale and Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale, and Oppression, pt II.

I read the book and found it entertaining, but not great. Catholics would not be comfortable in the evangelical totalitarian dystopia the novel depicts. Heck, from what I remember, Baptists were waging a guerilla war against the state!

The brouhaha reminds of what Francis Eugene Cardinal George, O.M.I., once said: "[Americans] are culturally Calvinist, even those who profess the Catholic faith."

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

My LRC Debut

My first piece for LewRockwell.com is currently the second most popular article on the site─Ron Paul Tzu by Joshua Snyder. Here is a sampling of some of the responses I've received:
    I hope that more people that profess to be in alignment with Eastern philosophy come to understand the deep resonance Austrian Economics has with wuwei and the Dao.
    ─Lionel Chan

    Have you thought of writing a manifesto for the Paul campaign? Ron Paul Tzu, and the Art of Peace comes to mind. Wow!
    ─Gary

    I liked what you wrote about Ron Paul. He is indeed a man of integrity who will be a great President if elected.
    ─Caolan

    I just finished reading your excellent article in LRC. I agree that Dr. Paul is indeed “our American sage” in the best Taoist tradition. I only hope he’s not too late.
    ─Gordon Althauser

    I appreciated your Ron Paul article today. In the spirit of that article I would like to mention that the thing that sets him apart is that he is wise. Other politicians in the American spirit are busy being smart. They have used their smarts to contrive a program for just about everything. They are so busy being smart that they have an idea on how just about everything should be central planned. What makes Dr. Paul so special to me is that he isn't busy trying to show how smart he is (this is not to imply that he isn't very smart in the conventional way), instead he shows his wisdom. It takes wisdom to know what can be done and what can't. It takes wisdom to know the problems that will arise before the solution is tried. Keynes was smart, Mises was wise.

    Sometimes it seems as if there is no place for wisdom in American society. Then we see the success meeting Dr. Paul and I wonder if I am just being a pessimist. Perhaps wisdom does have an audience. Perhaps America is hungering for it.

    I tend to see the very things you described in your article. I couldn't have said them nearly as well; you did a masterful job. I hope you will take this theme and develop it with more variations. Your message, like Dr. Paul's, was very positive. More messages like it could only lift more spirits ans spread more good karma.

    ─Paul Binder

    Joshua, I enjoyed your article and felt compelled to drop you a line. There has been so much wisdom in this world and so much sage thinking
    and advise. I wish we could get back to the ancients teachings and
    wisdom. I back Ron Paul and anyone who thinks like him. Which is also
    the way I think.

    ─Gerry

    Hi Josh, so well said , I too believe R P is a great man , honest, wise, experienced. a very rare thing in Washington D.C.

    Mr. Paul would stand in unity with Jesus and the other wise and holy ones who have traveled the road of time.

    One of his assets is that he isn't a lawyer, the fact that he is a Dr. and understands the value of life and has sworn to do no harm holds great weight, and stands far above his rivals.

    ─Leonard

    I like your idea of Ron Paul as a Taoist sage, and agree with you that the character of a statesman is just as important as the policies he advocates. Like you I am a "Paulist" and an expatriated gentleman scholar languishing in the Far East.

    I wonder if there are grounds for cooperation between us? I just set up a new blog where I am dealing with libertarian/paleoconservative fusion which contains some stuff on Richard Weaver and Ron Paul. However Dr. Paul deserves exclusive billing. Hows this for a crazy half-baked idea: Why don't you and I, and anyone else we can drag along with us, set up a "Ron Paul International" a la those socialist internationals which the lefties used to propagate themselves with? Of course it would just be a blog...or what in the pre-net days was dismissed as a "letterhead." But today much can be accomplished just in cyberspace...and I suspect that there are a lot of expatriated Americans who are every bit as revolted as you and I are with the madhouse that the US's politics (not to mention other aspects of its culture) has become.

    ─Mark Sunwall
For their comments, I also thank Bill, Basil (Bazz) Childress, mx44, Tim, and sunny.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

A Story with a Local Bent from India

Our local steelmaker has some enemies─Four Posco officials abducted in Orissa.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

The Precautionary Principle

Michael Cook on "[t]he real problem with this year's Nobel Peace Prize"─A victor in wars which haven’t happened.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

John Bolton Doesn't Like Ron Paul's Foreign Policy

Bookmark and Share

St. Paul, Brazil

Seth Kugel on "the ugliest, most dangerous city you'll ever love"─36 Hours in São Paulo.

I felt the same way whgen I visited the place in 1995, and 'blogged my impressions here─São Paulo's Lei Cidade Limpa:
    I visited São Paulo twelve years ago and found it absolutely overwhelming, much moreso than Mexico City. As I walked the city streets, I could not get out of my head the Spanish word acoso, which my dictionary inadequately defines as "harassment" or "relentless pursuit." Despite the friendliness and physical beauty of the people, I found myself always looking over my shoulder. It was the city itself, described in the article as "a very vertical city" and "very frenetic," that threatened.
Mr. Kugel's article mentions a place I whiouyld have gone to for some peace, "a stately monastery and church... with Gregorian chants accompanying the 10 a.m. Mass"─Mosteiro de São Bento de São Paulo.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Best Quote on Al Gore's Nobel

"It's as ridiculous as if they'd given Goebbels one in 1938," says leftist Alexander Cockburn─Al Gore's Peace Prize.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Reactionary Utopian on tyhe Good Doctor

I like the scenario Joseph Sobtan outlines here─President Paul? An excerpt:
    By rights Paul should be the hero of a Molière comedy, or a Frank Capra film. Politics is mostly hypocrisy, and the man of simple good faith can be a disruptive force, like the driver who observes the speed limit when all the others are flooring it.

    My own hope is that Ron will run for president on the Constitution Party ticket, as the two big liberal parties nominate Hillary and Rudy. It’s not so much that I want him to win — wonderful though that would be — as that even if he lost, he could outshine his opponents and change the terms in which American politics is discussed.

Labels:

Bookmark and Share

A Political Mea Culpa

Tracy Fennel admits to voting for Bush twice in a great post─Blame Me. He also voted for Bush as governor of Texas, but he's no longer "the delusion that the Republican party is the lesser of two evils." He's also voted for Dr. Ron Paul, being a resident of his district, a fact which more than exonerates him in my opinion.

While we're making confessions, I admit that while I did not vote for Bush in '04 (neither did I vote for Kerry), I wanted him to win and was happy he did so.

If '08 comes down to Hitlery vs. Ghouliani, or anyone else other than Dr. Ron Paul for that matter, I'll echo Scott P. Richert and hope that we end up with a Mrs. President─Hillary in '08! It'll serve us right; as the old syaing goes, people get the government they deserve.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Ever Thought of Opening a House of Hospitality?

Bookmark and Share

Enemies of the Faith Within

On why a modernist megachurch design was chosen─Fatima shrine given €80m facelift to counter zealotry. The relevant paragraph:
    The work is also intended to smarten up the sanctuary's image and eliminate what its rector, Luciano Guerra, calls "exaggerations in the devotion to Fatima". Pilgrims from the poor north of Portugal often make the stony final approach crawling on hands and knees, with cloths to bind their bleeding wounds. Such extremes of zeal lend the sanctuary an atmosphere of medieval fanaticism that church authorities seek to discourage.
[link via A conservative blog for peace]

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Samrye Catholic Parish

Bookmark and Share

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Chinese Realism

Interesting that the one place traditional Western oil painting survives and thrives is China, as evidenced by the painting pictured above, part of a recent exhibition in Seoul reported on in this story─중국그림 경매‥예상 밖 '고가' 낙찰.

"Realistic master-pieces may have become 'fossils' at the Louvre in Paris, but realism never goes out of date in China, it's never a cliche"─Chinese realism, never out of date.

The painting of this 'blog's namesake, Matteo Ricci, S.J., pictured on the sidebar, is one of the first if not the first example from this school.

My co-religionists will appreciate these traditional Chinese paintings of Catholic themes─Icons of the Celestial Kingdom.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

An Abrahamic Peace Plan

Some good news for a change─Muslim scholars call for peace with Christians. I think that Hilaire Belloc would agree with me that in The Modern Phase, or "the Modern Attack" as he called it, we find a greater threat than in what he called The Great and Enduring Heresy of Mohammed.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Portugal, Pray For Us

Elena Maria Vidal reminds us that today is the anniversary of a miracle witnessed by thousands─October 13, 1917: The Dance of the Sun.
Staying in 20th Portugal, here's the brief story of a remarkable blessed of whom I had not before heard, pictured above─Blessed Alexandrina Maria da Costa.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

More Gore

"Al Gore - as vice-president under Bill Clinton between 1993 and 2001 was never heard or seen as a peace-maker"─Gore's Peace Prize, a Grand Misjudgment.

"[T]he Nobel organization has denigrated all past awards by giving its prize to the politically correct Gore"─Nobel 'Peace' Prize Awarded to De-Population, Abortion Advocate Al Gore.

His "doomsday forecasts[' is] purpose is to praise the Gaia Cult and the Earth whilst attacking Christianity" and "[f]or him birth control, including abortion, is the solution to pollution"─Nobel Prize for Al Gore’s war.

I remaim unconvinced that he's wrong about global warming, but even if he's right, he doesn't deserve the prize.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Chattanooga Declaration

Bookmark and Share

Friday, October 12, 2007

Who Am I?

In celebration of this 'blog's hit counter entering into six digit figures, I've decided to interview myself so that readers might get to know me better. Please bear with this exercise in narcissism.

Who are you?

As the blurb on my sidebar says, I'm "[a]n American Catholic son-in-law of Korea, [who] lives with [my] wife and two children in Pohang, where [I] serve as an assistant visiting professor of English at a science and technology university."

When and why did you come to Korea?

I arrived at the end of August in 1997. I was sent by the American university from which I had graduated and for which I had taught in America and later in Malaysia. As I often tell people, I didn't choose to come, but I chose to stay.

What made you stay?

Well, about three hours after setting foot in the country, I met the lovely woman who was to be my wife and the mother of my children. She was and is the main reason, but other than her, there are several reasons. Life is easier here than it would be for me in the United States; I work less and get paid more than I would back home. Living abroad gives me a certain freedom that I enjoy. Also, I can pretentiously refer to myself as a "self-emposed exile."

Do you anticipate that your, ahem, "exile" will be permanent?

No. We're saving up to buy a house and land, both of which are ridiculously expensive here. Also, I prefer American culture and want my children to grow up as free people, which I think Koreans are not and never will be.

What? Aren't you an America-hater? Doesn't your 'blog focus on all the evils of AmeriKKKa while extolling the virtues of Korea?

Don't get your drawers in a bunch. I'd say that yours would be a very selective reading of this 'blog. I tend not to focus on the dark side of Korea and Korean culture because that is the typical bitter expat thing to do, and there is nothing more tiresome. Besides, Korea doesn't impose her will on others militarily.

I criticize America's culture and foreign policy because I love the country. She's the best country ever, as far as I'm concerned, but she's best for me. I don't know about anyone else. She needn't impose her ways on anyone else.

To those who accuse me of anti-Americanism I throw the epithet back and then again. I'm a better American than they are or ever will be. They're the ones dragging the country into the mud and sullying her reputation around the world. My children and grandchildren will pay the price for their foolishness, and that makes me mad.

Whatever. If you're not an anti-American, you're at least a xenophile. Are you also a polyglot?

No. In addition to Korean, I'm conversant only in Spanish, having been an exchange student in Chile and having travelled throughout Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Brazil (they understood me; I couldn't understand them), Paraguay, and the Argentine. I've also studied German, Swahili, French, Vietnamese, and Chinese; and I have dabbled in Malay, Thai, New Testament Greek, and Ecclesiastical Latin.

Your 'blog has a strange name for a Catholic 'blogger, are you some kind of syncretist?

No. Confucianism is not a religion, but a philosophy, and a darned good one at that. This 'blog is named after Matteo Ricci, S.J. , the man who brought The Catholic Faith to China. He called himself a "Western Confucian (西儒)." After having dressed and lived for years as a Buddhist monk, he realized the Confucian scholars were more revered and that their philosophy was closer to Catholicism than was Buddhism. I like that reinveting of oneself, as I have done it many times.

Paradoxically, I'm probably much more of a Taoist than a Confucian, although the two are never mutually exclusive as we from the West tend to think. But paradoxes have never bothered Christians.

Is this your first foray into 'blogging?

No. For years I 'blogged as the Katolik Shinja. I decided a needed a new name as my 'blog drifted further away from strictly religious topics. Also, I didn't want anyone to think that my political positions represented the Catholic position, as if there were such a thing. Also, I wanted to distance myself a bit from the "puffed up" posturing I took as a recent convert.

Politics and religion seem to be your chief concerns. Can you describe yourself in religious terms?

Catholic.

No qualifiers?

No qualifiers. It's a wonderful word by itself, and is only spoiled by qualifiers. From the Greek καθολικός, literally, "according the whole" and meaning "general" or "universal."

You said you were a convert. Can you describe your conversion experience?

More than a conversion to, it was an entrance into the fullness of The Catholic Faith. I had been raised in High Church Lutheranism and after some years of wandering in various spiritual deserts, I found myself a welcomed guest of the Anglican Communion for six years. The slippery slope of Anglo-Catholicism led me directly to Popery.

Moving on to politics, can you describe yourself in political terms?

No.

You're being coy.

If anything, I'm a legitimist. As His Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty Otto von Habsburg said, "...I am a legitimist: I am for legitimate government. You could never have a monarchy in Switzerland, and it would be asinine to imagine Spain as a republic."

Not being a universalist in politics leads one to Traditionalist Conservatism or Paleoconservatism. As an American, I am concerned with finding a legitimate political outlook for the American people, which has lead me to conclusion that Paleolibertarianism is the philosophy that best corresponds to our national character.

You've mentioned "anarchism" several times on you 'blog. Can you explain?

By anarchism, I mean the absence of rule by force, not the absence of rule. Confucius said that a king should rule by example, not force. If you will, call me an "anarcho-Catholic" like Dorothy Day. If I were English or European, I might be an "anarcho-monarchist" like J.R.R. Tolkien or Salvador Dalí. I like the term "anarcho-traditionalist."

I also like the term "retro-progressive," echoing these wise words from C.S. Lewis: "We all want progress, but if you're on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive."

So, can I conclude that you are religiously orthodox and politically heterodox?

I've come to the same conclusion myself.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

El Cid on Blackwater

The paleocon/paleolib milblogger reposts a piece he wrote "after having just returned from Iraq and still feeling disgust for these hired guns"─Mercenaries in Iraq. If there's a 'blog everyone should be reading, it's the League of the Scarlet Pimpernel.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Voices for Freedom in England

Christopher Biggins─Even a Openly Homosexual Actor has Condemned New UK Law Which Would Criminalize Criticizing Homosexuality. (I wouldn't want a law outlawing anti-Catholic speech either.) Mr. Biggins calls the proposal "yet another step in the grim march of authoritarianism now afflicting Britain, with people terrified of speaking their minds for fear of the knock on the door."

Richard Brunstrom─Legalise all drugs - police chief. He called the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 "not fit for purpose" and "immoral" and the current drugs strategy "unwinnable."

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Vicar of Christ Instructs South Korea

Roma locuta estPope to S. Korea: No Stem Cell Research. Causa finita est.

That should read "No Embryonic Stem Cell Research." Many of the graduate students and researchers I tutor work with adult stem cells, which pose no ethical concerns and have, in fact, proven to be nmore effective.

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

And You Thought Arafat Was a Nadir

As if the committee weren't discredited enough─Gore wins Nobel Peace Prize. First Carter, now Gore. Saying I dislike Bush is the understatement of the year, but this is ridiculous!

This is the man, appropriately surnamed Gore, who was number two during the bombing of Serbia and the Iraq sanctions regime that killed half a million souls, mostly children. And yet when Pope John Paul II was the leading voice for peace in 2003, he couldn't get the prize because of condoms. Instead, it was instead given to someone no one ever heard of and whom we've since all forgotten. Shameful.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Doug Bandow's Latest

Bookmark and Share

Peak Oil Gets Crunchy

Rod Dreher offers "mounting evidence that the world's oil supply has peaked" and a letter stating that "UK oil companies are quietly preparing for a much more ascetic future ... but British government and society are just muddling along in denial"─Realism and peak oil.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

African Christian Resistance to Islamic Pederasty

Rod Dreher explains "why homosexuality is such a big deal for African Christians" and how it is "vitally important in Christianity's rivalry with Islam"─St. Charles Lwanga and African homosexuality.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Bad News for Babies and Pro-Life Beer Lovers

Jeff Culbreath makes the connection─Sierra Nevada Brewing Company … and Abortion.

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share

A Little Raskolnikov

Bibliophiles will enjoy Cho Se-hyon's childhood memory from late 1940's Seoul of himself trying to steal a Japanese translation of a novel by an author whom I also "revere as the greatest novelist of all time"─Memories of Crime and Punishment.

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

A Confucian Gentlemen and Taoist Sage

My first piece for LewRockwell.com has been accepted; here's a sneak preview─Ron Paul Tzu.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Thursday, October 11, 2007

The Good Doctor's Got Seoul

The Marmot's Hole reports on "the first candidate support group to be organized among American expats in Korea"─The Seoul Ron Paul 2008 Meetup Group.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

A Palæolibertarian Appraisal of Columbus and his Detractors

Ryan McMaken says that "when judged by the standards of his own time, [he] was not a good man" and that "19th-century American nationalists invented the myth of the semi-divine Columbus"─Happy Columbus Day. After indicting him, the author quotes Pope Paul III in 1537 by way of contrast:
    notwithstanding whatever may have been or may be said to the contrary, the said Indians and all other people who may later be discovered by Christians, are by no means to be deprived of their liberty or the possession of their property, even though they be outside the faith of Jesus Christ; and that they may and should, freely and legitimately, enjoy their liberty and the possession of their property; nor should they be in any way enslaved...
Mr. McMaken also indicts "those who villainize Columbus and all of European civilization for its treatment of the Indians" and "ignore the efforts of the Europeans to extend universal rights of liberty and property to the Indians."

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Importance of the Petrine Ministry

It might be illustrated by this story─Pope asks for prayers after Russian Orthodox walk out of dialogue. The walk-out occured during while the Orthodox delegates were meeting separately; here's what happened:
    During the Orthodox meeting, Russian Orthodox Bishop Hilarion of Vienna and Austria told the other Orthodox delegates that his delegation would leave the meeting if they did not ask the Estonian Orthodox delegation to leave.

    A participant at the dialogue told Catholic News Service Oct. 10 that both Catholic and Orthodox representatives were "a bit shocked" at Bishop Hilarion's ultimatum and decision to leave, but the Catholic position was that it was an internal Orthodox matter.
This article from the Russian press explains that it was indeed "an internal Orthodox matter"─Russian Orthodox Church delegation walks out of conference. While it is true that the "'primacy of a Roman bishop' is a stumbling block in the relations between the Christians of the West and the East," this issue at hand in the walk-out was that "the delegation of the Russian Orthodox Church object[ed] to inclusion in it of representatives of the Estonian Apostolic Church."

Oremus...

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share

The Largest Beatification in History

Murdered by the Spanish Republicans, those darlings of the Left, in the Civil War─500 Spanish martyrs to be beatified. From the article:
    With these new Blessed a total 977 Spanish martyrs have been recognised by the Church, and 11 of them are already Saints. "Many more cases could be proposed" said the spokesman of the Spanish Bishops' Conference, because in Spain at that time about 10,000 people were martyred. Processes of beatification have already been started for about 2,000.

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

More Clintonian Machiavellianism

The League of the Scarlet Pimpernel links to a video "indictment of the raw, ruthless power of the Clintons"─Hillary Exposed. A must-see.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Tao of the Free Market

"What China needs is a system based on free markets and the rule of law," says James A. Dorn─The Case for Market Taoism. Some excerpts:
    Lao-tzu, thought to have been an older contemporary of Confucius, may have been the first libertarian. In the Tao Te Ching ("The Classic of the Way and Its Virtue"), he argued that if government followed the principle of wu-wei (non-intervention), social and economic harmony would naturally emerge and people would prosper.

    [....]

    The essence of Lao-tzu's liberal vision is stated concisely in Chapter 57 of his book: "The more restrictions and limitations there are, the more impoverished men will be....The more rules and precepts are enforced, the more bandits and crooks will be produced. Hence, we have the words of the wise [ruler]: Through my non-action, men are spontaneously transformed. Through my quiescence, men spontaneously become tranquil. Through my non-interfering, men spontaneously increase their wealth."

    [....]

    Good government must be in harmony with each person's desire to prosper and to expand the range of choice. By emphasizing the principle of non-intervention, Lao-tzu recognized that when government leaves people alone, then, "without being ordered to do so, people become harmonious by themselves." He thus understood, at least implicitly, that central planning generates social disorder by destroying economic freedom. When coercion trumps consent as the chief organizing principle of society, the natural way of the Tao and its virtue (Te) will be lost.

    Disorder arises when government oversteps its bounds -- when it overtaxes and denies people their natural right to be left alone to pursue their happiness, as long as they do not injure others. Lao-tzu saw taxes, not nature, as the primary cause of famine: "When men are deprived of food, it is because their kings [rulers] tax them too heavily." Likewise, he recognized that rulers could easily destroy the natural harmony people cherish by destroying their liberty: "When men are hard to govern, it is because their kings interfere with their lives."
Two previous posts of mine on the theme─Chinese Proto-Libertarians ─ Taoists or Confucians? and Taoist Libertarian Non-Interventionist Traditionalist Localism.

Labels: , , , , ,

Bookmark and Share

Omnes Sancti et Sanctæ Coreæ, orate pro nobis.