Monthly Archives: July 2010

Protecting assets

Incorporate, advises commenter Benjamin, at Carpe Diem, where the talk is the Americans With Disabilities Act, now 20 years old, as foolish, expensive, and dictatorial, thanks, says Benjamin, to judges and lawyers with “no concept [of] costs, or the costs they are imposing on society”:

[Y]ou can almost always avoid any personal liability by forming a corporation. The corporate shield is a marvelous fiction, and ensconced behind it, you are nearly impervious. Just keep few assets in the corporation, and declare bankruptcy if met with untoward judgments.

A word to the wise, to be sure.

(HT News Alert)

Eighty and out, says Big O.

Get outta here, Charlie!

President Barack Obama has kept mum on the fate of Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY) for days — but he tells CBS News that it’s time for the embattled 80-year-old former Ways and Means Chairman to end his career “with dignity.”

Why, besides “troubling” allegations?

 [H]e’s somebody who’s at the end of his career. Eighty years old. I’m sure that– what he wants is to be able to– end his career with dignity. And my hope is that– it happens. “

What the hell, what is he a one-man death panel?

Kenneth Howell back at work

Alliance Defense Fund, one.  Hate speech, nothing.

An adjunct religion instructor barred from teaching by the University of Illinois after defending the Roman Catholic stance on homosexuality has been invited back to teach this fall.

Adjunct associate professor Kenneth Howell was reinstated on Thursday — a day after the deadline when his lawyers said they would sue the university for violating his academic freedom if administrators failed to reinstate him.

Faculty investigators soldier on.

But the reinstatement is temporary. It does not affect an ongoing faculty review, which has been investigating whether Howell’s immediate removal violated his academic freedom or right to due process.

Another faculty committee appointed to examine the circumstances of Howell’s compensation concluded that the university’s relationship with St. John’s Catholic Newman Center, the Catholic ministry on campus, was improper.

Though Howell taught Introduction to Catholicism and Modern Catholic Thought in university classrooms, he served on the payroll of the Newman Center funded by the Diocese of Peoria — an agreement that remained in place despite scholars’ objections when a religious studies program was established in 1971.

Longstanding objections, therefore?  Reported at the time?  Known by how many even now?  Chi Trib’s Brachear is slipping something in here: It’s what interests her.

Question: Any names to go with the Howell decision to reinstate?  Passive voice irritates: “has been invited . . . was reinstated.”  By whom?  Weak reportage, I fear, all that’s available for now maybe.

The king of trite

We pick on Obama for his statist policies, but do we pick on him for his regular use of bromides and nostrums?  We should.  Just today on The View, where a gaggle of admirers were joined by their usual conservative Hasselbeck, he came up with these that flash across his TelePrompter mind:

So why did Obama decide to go on the daytime chatfest? “I was trying to find a show that [First Lady] Michelle [Obama] actually watched,” the President said on the show.

Here’s a case of playing to the expected, or expecting.  It’s what the old boy says deprecatingly of the lady of the house, you know, accompanied by boyish grin.  He has the moves, yes.

. . . he talks about the economy, the oil spill and a “whole host of other issues.” He says the economy has started to stabilize and grow again.

Passing over what he says the economy is doing, how about that “whole host” business? 

“Politics is a contact sport,” says Obama. But he says “We shouldn’t be campaigning all the time.”

Passing over the second part, at which coming from him many would gag, “contact sport” is sure telling.

Told (by Hasselbeck) we’re “very divided,” he said,

“My hope is that I try to set a tone” that we can disagree without being disaggreable. He says the media loves conflict, and doesn’t report on agreements.

Can’t say enough for this trifecta of “my hope is” (vs. “I hope”), “disagree without” etc., and media as loving conflict.  At least he didn’t blame it on Bush.

That’s all for now.  more more more to come . . .

Interesting question

Caller to Rush Limbaugh, noting that Obama had said Afr-Ams are mongrels, asked if now it’s safe to say, “The son of a bitch has to go” and would it not make a good campaign slogan.

What to do with priest abusers

“Blessed are the invisible for they remind us not of the potential for cruelty in all of us,” says Mary Gail Frawley-O’Dea in NC Reporter.  She presents an argument against “amputating” clerical abusers.  Out of sight, we lack them as there-but-for-the-grace-of-God examples.

We also cut loose predators into the general population:

Recidivism is a problem among sexual abuse perpetrators. . . .   Priests . . . may be at particular risk. One analysis of sexual offenders found that men who were unmarried and who abused boys that were not family members were somewhat more likely to re-offend than other perpetrators.

Further, we know that significant life stressors can induce psychological regression in which even men who stopped abusing begin again. A priest who loses his vocation, home, manner of dress, and circle of colleagues is at risk to regress and to re-abuse.

She proposes “a Penance, Productivity, and Provisioning Program for these men.”

The penance would be voluntary, as the price of remaining a priest:

. . .  in a containment and healing center administered and secured by secular professionals. . . .  these men would agree to live here for the remainder of their lives. They could not leave the center without a security guard accompanying them. There would be no TVs, computers, or phones in their rooms and reading material, like magazines, would be screened to prevent pornography from entering the centers. Each man would work with a therapist and/or spiritual director to develop an individual penance program, including prayer. Residents would turn over their assets, retirement funding or salaries to the centers to defray the costs of their care. [Italics added]

O’Dea means business.

They’d have to be productive:

Baking bread, tilling the soil, candle making and other crafts, teaching other residents are all possibilities. Some could generate income to help sustain the centers at less cost to Catholics. In addition, residents could make themselves available to researchers seeking to learn more about commonalities among abusive priests.

She also reaches into the history of the church.  So far, this is looking like a monastery.

Provisioning (?), they would be fully authorized to do sacramental ministry among themselves and

would receive room and board, medical treatment, psychotherapy, and spiritual direction according to individual plans. Bishops would commit to visiting their priests annually to extend pastoral care and to remain conscious of the role of sexual abuse in the lives of these men, their victims, and the wider Catholic community.

Bishops would have reminders they need to protect all concerned, including victims.  These priests would be buying into the highest spiritual, supernatural goals of the priesthood.

Even offenders who turned down this program, choosing rather to “be separated from the priesthood without salary or other benefits canonically possible to withhold” would remain the bishop’s responsibility, reminding them men that they are “priests who betrayed their vocations and should be making reparation.”

Amputate a limb and feel “phanton pain,” she would have the Vatican remember when it considers cutting off offenders, O’Dea says.

The “diseased” part is gone but suffering continues. Maintaining the abusing priest’s attachment to the body of the church keeps him, his victims, his crimes, and his needs visible to hierarchy covenantally required to hold all of that in their sights.

She packs an awful lot into that — and in this program of rehabilitation and renewal that seems truly churchly.

Who is she?

Mary Gail Frawley-O’Dea, a clinical psychologist, was the only mental health professional to address the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops on the sexual abuse crisis at their 2002 Dallas meeting, and she was one of the clinicians speaking about sexual abuse to the Conference of Major Superiors of Men that year. Frawley-O’Dea is coauthor of Treating the Adult Survivor of Childhood Sexual Abuse, and coeditor of Predatory Priests, Silenced Victims.

I read the latter book and recommend it.

Later: Reader John, who had monastery experience many years ago:

I would agree with Frawley-O’Dea but feel that not enough attention has been paid to sexual abuse by ministers of other denominations. I have heard from several persons who were victims. When a Protestant minister abuses he is held responsible personally, but a Catholic priest is in part protected by the diocese he serves.

Which has been part of the problem.  O’Dea wants dioceses to claim their own, accepting responsibility without simply protecting offenders in the sense John means it.

Later: Reader D approves:

I appreciated seeing this. It reminds me of the AA facility at Guest House in Minn. for priests, which is a 6 month or so (spa-like) treatment center, with clinical psychologists, classes on alcoholism, doctors, AA meetings, priestly camaraderie, etc.
This plan goes much deeper, is more rigorous of course and is for the duration. Sounds more Christian to me than turning them out into the world to fend for themselves or as predators.
A redemptive plan. She’s on to something.

Barack, we hardly knew you . . .

Two Dem pollsters in WSJ:

During the election campaign, Barack Obama sought to appeal to the best instincts of the electorate, to a post-partisan sentiment that he said would reinvigorate our democracy. He ran on a platform of reconciliation—of getting beyond “old labels” of right and left, red and blue states, and forging compromises based on shared values.

He lied!


Just posted at Not for Attribution:

Latin Mass Mag also goes small-c catholic:

If you haven’t read P.G. Wodehouse, you have no business saying you have lived . . . .

They know what sells

Gang of leakers going for broke:

WikiLeaks, frustrated at the lack of splash of recent leaks on its whistle-blowing website, has rolled the dice to try to raise its profile by teaming up with news organizations in its latest dump of classified documents.

And they know the expose of Chinese torture of Tibetans, N. Korean, Russian stuff, etc. will never have the legs of an expose of the U.S.  Or of madrassas indoctrinating kids, Islamists plotting terror (another man’s name for freedom-fighting), flabby willingness of Western sell-outs to paper over and mollify-by-any-means Islamists in their midst.  (Chi Trib still respectfully quotes CAIR — in this case, TribCo-owned Sentinel — stuck in fear of Islamaphobia.)

Some places they can’t get into (they depend on U.S. intelligence for that), others they can but aren’t interested.  Atrocities by Americans!  There we go.  (Or by Israelis, pretty much the same thing.)

In releasing a “War Diary” of 76,000 secret U.S. military reports from the war in Afghanistan , the web site was unapologetic about its agenda. “We hope its release will lead to a comprehensive understanding of the war in Afghanistan and provide the raw ingredients necessary to change its course,” the authors said.

That’s in Chi Trib about WikiLeaks, where a fellow with an intriguing organization predicts more of the same:

That [extreme difficulty in finding leakers] means that more partnerships between WikiLeaks and the mainstream media could be on the horizon, said Tom Rosenstiel, founder and director of the Project for Excellence in Journalism.

Intriguing, and very wise.  Who can object to excellence?  Realizing that, I am on the verge of announcing my new organization, Project for Excellence in Everything (PEE), which is bound to take off.  Motto?  “Everyone PEEs.”

Come out, get out, says vicariate

Local RC authorities in Rome distance selves from recently outed same-sex acting-out priests:

Rome, July 23 – Catholic Church authorities in Rome on Friday urged gay priests to come out after an Italian newsweekly ran an expose’ claiming many of the clerics in the capital led a “double life”.

“No one is forcing them to stay priests, only getting the benefits,” said a statement from the Vicariate of Rome, led by Cardinal Agostino Vallini, one of the Vatican’s top figures.

“Coherence demands they should come out into the open,” it said. “They never should have become priests”.

They also throw down the already-thrown gauntlet.  A great struggle here, gay-life-appreciators vs. faith-defenders.  Much more to come on this extremely important Catholic-church issue.

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