Sunday, August 31, 2008
Palin electrifies conservative base
Jonathan Martin 2 hours, 1 minute ago
ST. PAUL – The selection of Sarah Palin as John McCain’s running mate has electrified conservative activists, providing a boost of energy to the GOP nominee-in-waiting from a key constituency that had been previously had been lukewarm – at best – about him.
By tapping the anti-abortion and pro-gun Alaska governor just ahead of his convention, which is set to start here Monday, McCain hasn’t just won approval from a skeptical Republican base – he’s ignited a wave of elation and emotion that has led some grassroots activists to weep with joy...
If this woman was truly pro-life and pro-gun - she would not accept the VP position from a liberal zionist like McCain!
Saturday, August 30, 2008
St. Augustine of Hippo (354-430AD) on Apologetics
Her Doctrine and Morals
Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost
31 August 2008
Christ after having healed the man with the dropsy on the Sabbath set out to heal the Pharisees of a spiritual evil _ pride.
Every one that exalts himself shall be humbled. Pride is a terrible evil. It is like a virus that infects everything it touches. It is perhaps worse because it is very clever at disguising its presence. It has a way of hiding under any number of good works or virtues. Pride sometimes even presents itself to us as virtue.
Pride makes us exalt ourselves. When we make ourselves out to be more than we are we are proud. How many a woman paints and decorates her body with the illusion that she is beautiful when in reality she is a laughing stock to everyone that lays eyes on her? Or in the spiritual realm, some filled with pride talk piously and pray so that the superficial observer will conclude that they are saints. Sometimes there are those who seek out the first place and wish to be honored and respected far beyond what they truly deserve.
This pride leads us to ascribe all the glory of what we do to ourselves rather than to God — who is the source of all goodness. We must remember that God allows us all the fruit or the utility of everything, but He reserves for Himself all the glory and honor. We must honor and glorify God in everything even though we are granted the privilege of using and gaining the advantages of these good things that God has given us. As St. Paul says: "I am what I am by the grace of God."
The proud man tends to despise his neighbor. He imagines that he is better or greater, when in reality he has nothing that he can truly claim as his own. Also we must consider the fact that our neighbor has been created, nurtured and redeemed by the same God as we have been. It is sinful to despise that which God has created in His own image and likeness and loves to the point of offering Himself on the cross for his sins.
Let us realize that there is nothing so detestable in the eyes of God as pride. Christ had nothing but compassion to the greatest of sinners. He readily pardoned the public sinner Mary Magdalen, the publican Zacheus, and even the thief on the cross. But, Christ had the harshest of words for the proud Scribes and Pharisees. He even referred to them as a brood of vipers and children of the devil _ all because of their pride.
Pride draws down upon us the wrath of God. And the humiliations of the proud man are a terrible suffering in eternity, but men often see the misery of the proud even here on earth. The proud man is a very miserable man. St. Augustine says: "Pride brings forth envy as its legitimate child, and the bad mother is always accompanied by her bad child." When the proud man sees others esteemed and himself slighted, anger and envy at once arise in his heart; he gets excited, peace departs from his soul, and he feels nothing but ill humor and discontent.
Pride robs us of any merit in eternity. When the proud man does any deed it is for his own honor and glory. He seeks the praise of men. Nothing is done for the honor and glory of God so he gives no honor or glory to God. He seeks the vain and fleeting praise of men and our Lord says to him: you have already received your reward and have none to expect in eternity.
St. Bernard says that in order to keep the spirit of pride away from us we must often make the following questions the subject of our reflections: What were we? What will we be? Remember whence we came and be abashed.
Let us also reflect upon the fact that Jesus and all the saints were humble.
Let us never say of ourselves without a special reason anything that may redound to our honor; let us disregard the praise of men and the applause of the world, for they are vain. On the contrary, let us endeavor to merit praise from God on account of our virtues for this alone has value. "Be you humbled, therefore, under the mighty hand of God; that He may exalt you in the time of visitation." (1 Peter 5:6)
MATTERS OF LIFE AND DEATH
California plans to drug depressed patients to death'
Nothing in the bill prohibits this horror'
Posted: August 29, 200811:40 pm Eastern
By Bob Unruh© 2008 WorldNetDaily
Just as Democratic presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama was in Denver preaching to a crowd of thousands of fans about the "change" he wants to see in the United States, his party compatriots in the California Legislature were making a "change," by approving a controversial plan that would allow nurses to assist terminally ill patients with suicide.
"AB 2747 allows a physician assistant or a nurse to opine that a patient is 'terminal,' and then push for unnatural death by 'palliative sedation,'" said Randy Thomasson, chief of the Campaign for Children and Families shortly after the vote.
"Depressed patients who succumb to this pressure will be drugged unconscious and die from dehydration, usually within five to 10 days. Nothing in the bill prohibits this horror," he said.
Forty-two Democrats in California voted in favor of the plan: 30 Republicans and two Democrats opposed the plan.
"AB 2747 pushes suicide through the back door at the hands of non-physicians taking advantage of depressed patients," Thomasson said. His organization has been alerting Californians to raise their concerns about the plan for sudden death with floor alerts, phone calls and e-mails.
"AB 2747 cheapens the value of human life by endorsing suicide as an option. Gov. Schwarzenegger should pledge to veto this very dangerous bill," Thomasson said, describing how the author, Assemblywoman Pattie Berg of Eureka, "deceptively changed" the bill to appear that "voluntarily stopping of eating and drinking" and "palliative sedation" no longer were on a list of "symptom management" options.
But the final bill "is broad enough to easily include these suicide techniques," Thomasson said.
The specific references to those treatments simply were changed to "other clinical treatments useful when a patient is actively dying."
According to the CCF report, Assemblyman Van Tran of Costa Mesa warned the bill has no protections for patients "who could be mistakenly diagnosed as 'terminally ill' but would have many, many full years of life ahead."
"The bill does not otherwise attempt to expressly define terminal illness that each of these health care professionals would have to diagnose to trigger the offer of counseling end of life options. It is not clear why nurse practitioners and physician assistants could make such a significant diagnosis. It is further not clear from the bill how making such significant diagnoses on a case-by-case basis can be done by such practitioners and assistants based on so-called 'standardized procedures and protocols' not further defined by the bill. The potential effect of AB 2747 is extremely broad and could cause irrevocable harm."
Added Republican Doug La Malfa of Yuba City: "We really go down a slippery slope when we contemplate the ending of life in such a way that it could be coerced. You have people in a very precarious situation, in a very awkward situation, that when thrust upon them with options to end their life, you have people that may feel like they have no use anymore. They feel like they're not of value anymore, and that taking one of these options, they may feel, is the only way out, that they've become a burden to their family or to someone else. I would hate to put people in that kind of position. They're already feeling vulnerable, and now, confronted with ways to end your life – this is a very delicate and, I think, dangerous idea here. You could have people like heirs that are anxious to get the estate started and quietly coercing people into making decisions like this."
"Total sedation (TS) – called by some 'terminal sedation,' 'palliative sedation,' or 'slow euthanasia' – is a protocol recently added to the lexicon of contemporary medical interventions and is a construct actively promulgated by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO)," wrote Dr. Howard M. Ducharme, past chair of the philosophy department at the University of Akron. "It is defined as 'the application of pharmacotherapy to induce a state of decreased or absent awareness (unconsciousness) in order to relieve the burden of otherwise intractable suffering. However, any quick acceptance of TS would be ill-advised because of the many 'devils in the details.'"
Friday, August 29, 2008
8:09 PM CDT, August 28, 2008
GREEN BAY, Wis. - Green Bay's new Catholic bishop livened his installation ceremony by breaking into song during his sermon with parts of a couple country songs -- including one called "Drop Kick Me, Jesus."
Bishop David Ricken, former bishop of Cheyenne, Wyo., first told the assembled church leaders, family members and others from the Green Bay and Cheyenne dioceses about traveling to his Cheyenne assignment after being ordained a bishop.As he drove, he was listening to Mozart's "Ave Verum," but he began wondering what music appealed to Wyoming residents. "I switched on the radio, and this is what I heard," Ricken said, then started singing Conway Twitty's "Truck Drivin' Man." "Pour me another cup of coffee/ For it is the best in the land/ And put a nickel in the jukebox/ And play the truck drivin' man."
After the roars of laughter died, Ricken said he was making another shift of cultures with his move to Wisconsin, where "I understand there's a famous football team" -- referring, of course, to the Green Bay Packers -- and it reminded him of another song. Then he launched into Bobby Bare's "Drop Kick Me, Jesus." "Drop kick me, Jesus, through the goal posts of life/ End over end neither left nor to right/ Straight through the heart of them righteous uprights/ Drop kick me, Jesus, through the goal posts of life."
After more laughter, Ricken said he actually felt the song carries "a certain profundity," and he went on with a sermon focused on St. Augustine's discovery of meaning through the teachings of Christ. He ended the sermon with "God bless you and let the drop kick begin." With his installation, he becomes the new leader for more than 350,000 Catholics in a 16-county area. Ricken takes over for Bishop David Zubik who was reassigned about a year ago to his original Pittsburgh diocese. ------ Information from: Green Bay Press-Gazette, http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com
ISN'T HE HILARIOUS???
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
The campground my brother Tom and I stayed at.
below - Me and Rick
below: Tom and Raul
St. Bonaventure (1221-1274AD)
St. Ignatius of Antioch (50-107AD)
A Newchurch "Nun" (Note the Gothic Black Fingernail Polish and Charismatic Posture)Suitable for Running in the "Sister Italia" Beauty ContestBeing Sponsored by a Newchurch Presbyter in Benedict-Ratzinger's Own Back Yard
Good Catholics, don't you wonder these days whether Benedict-Ratzinger knows what's going on in his own Newchurch? Near Naples, just south of Rome, one of Benedict-Ratzinger's presbyters is expecting over 1,000 Newchurch "nuns" to enter his "Sister Italia" beauty pageant, which he hopes will rival the Miss Italy pageant.
Presbyter Antonio Rungi wants the "nuns" to be fresh meat, what he calls "attractive presences." They must be "young and attractive," and under 40. Habits are not required. Rungi has some experience with merchandizing bodies. He has organized Novus Ordo "Beach" Messes on Naples' beaches, where Newchurchers in bikinis (or perhaps not) can lie in the sand during the "service. Rungi says that it was actually the Newchurch "nuns" themselves, while they were stretched out on the Neopolitan beach, who got the idea to parade around as beauty contestants.
For those of you who are repulsed by the cheap secular merchandizing of the "nun" body in which Newchurch is involved here, presbyter Rungi has a response: you have a "closed mentality." That says all you need to know about the lack of Catholicism in Newchurch. [Some information for this Commentary was contributed by Corriere della Sera.]
Brother Roger Schutz, the founder and longtime leader of the ecumenical Taizé community, regularly received Communion at Taizé, and before his death in 2005 he also received the Eucharist personally from Pope John Paul II and the future Pope Benedict XVI (at his predecessor's funeral). Yet Brother Roger remained a Protestant minister, and the Taizé community denied reports of a secret conversion.
Cardinal Walter Kasper attempts to explain how someone can be both Protestant and Catholic. Sandro Magister observes: "According to Kasper, it is as if there had been an unwritten agreement between Schutz and the Church of Rome, 'crossing certain confessional' and canonical limits."
» Chiesa analysis by Sandro Magister of a text by Cardinal Kasper
Monday, August 25, 2008
Four twisters touch down near Parker, Castle Rock
Rocky Mountain News
Originally published 05:44 p.m., August 24, 2008Updated 10:10 p.m., August 24, 2008
Bob Dunn © Special to The Rocky
At least four tornadoes touched down Sunday afternoon southeast of Denver between the towns of Castle Rock and Parker, but somehow managed to twist dangerously by new housing developments.
The thunderstorms also unleashed a sudden deluge of rain and hail on several subdivisions.
"It was like it snowed during and after the tornado," said Stephen Klein, 15, who lives in the Sapphire Pointe subdivision with his family about a mile-and-a-half southeast of where the tornado touched down. Klein, his mother and two brothers headed to the basement after a neighbor alerted them of the twister.
The storm also triggered a spectacular lightning show around Douglas and Elbert counties.
Clouds and dark skies lingered throught the evening.
Jim and Paulette Vigil were driving through Parker and heading to Franktown with their two sons when they spotted the tornado west of town. The Vigils pulled over at South Parker and East Hilltop roads to take videos of the twister.
"It was a strand, and then it just widened and broadened at the bottom," Paulette Vigil said.
"It seemed like it was hitting right on top of a house, but it may have come to the south of the house. It was incredible to see," her husband added. Jim Vigil has lived in Colorado all his life and it was the first tornado he had seen in person.
Several sightings of the dusty twisters were reported, but there were no reports of damage or injuries except for downed trees.
There were additional reports of funnel clouds near Larkspur and west of Sedalia, said Douglas County sheriff's spokeswoman Cocha Heyden. Deputies and firefighters were dispatched, but none reported any damage.
Because of the Democratic National Convention, the county had opened its emergency operations center as a precaution prior to the tornado sightings, Heyden said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Beauty pageant for Italian nuns
A beauty pageant for nuns called "Miss Sister Italy" will be launched next month in the southern Italian diocese of Modragone.
Last Updated: 11:34PM BST 24 Aug 2008
Father Antonio Rungi, who is organising the pageant, said he expected around 1,000 contestants to enter.
"Nuns are above all women and beauty is a gift from God," Father Rungi told the daily Corriere della Sera.
"This contest will be a way to show there isn't just the beauty we see on television but also a more discrete charm," he added.
Father Rungi plans to carry out the pageant online, with hopeful nuns submitting pictures to his blog and readers voting on their charms.
Entrants must fill out a profile form with snippets of information on their lives and a photograph - either wearing the traditional veil or going bareheaded.
"You really think all nuns are old, stunted and sad? This isn't the case any more, thanks to the arrival in our country of young and vital nuns," notably from Africa and Latin America, he added.
"I hope the next (pageant) won't just take place online but that we can organise a real show that can take place during the Miss Italy contest," he said.
Father Rungi said it was nuns who had first suggested the idea to him, but some Catholic groups were critical.
"It's an initiative that belittles the role of nuns who have dedicated themselves to God," said Alberto Giannino, a Catholic activist.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH
Her Doctrine and Morals
24 August 2008
Today's gospel shows Christ choosing His twelve apostles. It is interesting to note that before choosing and calling the twelve He "went out into a mountain to pray, and He passed the whole night in the prayer of God."
Christ shows us Himself in prayer before He begins any important work: before He begins His public works; before choosing His apostles; before His crucifixion; etc. We must not understand that these are the only times Christ prayed. It would be more appropriate to say that He was always praying. He was constantly in union and "communication" with the Father and the Holy Ghost, because They are One.
Our Lord deliberately shows Himself in the Gospel praying at various times to instruct us in the necessity of prayer. We too must pray and pray always, but especially before we begin any important event in our lives.
It is of utmost importance that we not make a mistake at these junctures of our lives because such a mistake could make our lives here on earth miserable and perhaps cause us eternal pain and suffering in Hell.
In order to make the right decision we need advice and enlightenment.
All too many people begin a vocation on a whim. We ask our children what they would like to be or what they would like to do when they grow up. They are told to think about what they would like to do, or what they think they would like to do. Yet, they have never done any of these things and are expected to make comparisons, and choices without any real knowledge or understanding.
We are surrounded with people who have no real goals in life. They just go to school without any direction of what they should be studying; then they wander around from one job to another, never finding that one that makes them "happy". Or they go from one "spouse" to another never finding the "right" one.
What is missing from their lives? Direction. And where should they find this direction? In serious reflection and prayer. If Christ would not choose His Apostles without prayer, how can we be so foolish as to think we can make correct decisions for our own lives without prayer?
God has a plan for each and every one of us and unless we cooperate and fulfill this specific goal that He has created us for, it is very likely that we will never find true happiness either here on earth or in eternity.
How will we know if He does not tell us or send someone to tell us? In order to be instructed then, we must learn to ask. "Seek and you shall find". We must ask in prayer.
We will not expect that God will appear or that we will hear His voice coming to us as thunder from heaven. But, having prayed and asked with as much fervor and devotion as we are able then we will see that God will make His will manifest to us in the circumstances that we find ourselves in or in the sound advice of a superior or true friend.
As long as we leave God out of the picture and pursue our own wills and not His we will never find the right place for us nor will we ever find true happiness.
It seems obvious that too many people fail to seek to do God's will in their lives. They never even consider God's will. They are too busy running around like a chicken without a head hoping to somehow stumble upon the right vocation or the right spouse. And almost invariably they make a choice which they spend the rest of their lives and perhaps even the rest of eternity regretting.
Let us teach our children to consult God, their consciences, and their superiors for direction in their lives. They should fear making any important decision without first praying. Let those who are in positions that represent God and His authority (This includes not only priests and religious, but also parent, teachers, etc.) also pray that they might advise and guide according to the will of God rather than their own will.
Our choices have very serious consequences both for time and eternity. Let us always seek to have those choices in conformity with the will of God, and then we will have nothing to fear, but will find happiness both now and forever.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
STEINHATCHEE, Fla. — Tropical Storm Fay crossed into the Florida Panhandle on Saturday, becoming the first storm of its kind in recorded history to hit the state four different times.
Fay's center made landfall around 1 a.m. EDT about 15 miles north-northeast of Apalachicola, Fla., according to the National Weather Service's National Hurricane Center.
Fay was expected to skirt across the Panhandle's coast Saturday and the coast of Mississippi and Alabama on Sunday, forecasters said.
Though Fay never materialized into a hurricane, its zigzagging downpours have been punishing and deadly.
Florida authorities said 2 more people were killed by Tropical Storm Fay Saturday, raising death toll to 10. The state attributed an additional death, before the storm hit, to hurricane preparedness after a man testing generators died of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Click here for photos.
Click here for satellite, radar and tracking maps at MyFOXHurricane.com.
5 Dead as Fay Dumps Buckets of Rain on Florida for 5th Day
Forecasters: Floridians Should Prepare for Hurricane
At Least 30 Feared Dead in Haiti From Tropical Storm Fay
"The damage from Fay is a reminder that a tropical storm does not have to reach a hurricane level to be dangerous and cause significant damage," said Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, who toured flooded communities this week.
Crist on Friday asked the White House to elevate the disaster declaration President Bush issued to a major disaster declaration. Crist said the storm damaged 1,572 homes in Brevard County alone, dropping 25 inches of rain in Melbourne. ...................
Fay has been an unusual storm, even by Florida standards. It set sights on the state last Sunday and first made landfall in the Florida Keys on Monday. The storm then headed out over open water again before hitting a second time near Naples on the southwest coast. It limped across the state, popped back out into the Atlantic Ocean and struck again near Flagler Beach on the central coast. It was the first storm in almost 50 years to make three landfalls in the state, as most hit and exit within a day or two.
Friday, August 22, 2008
St. Ambrose of Milan (340-397AD)
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Jane Frances was wife, mother, nun and founder of a religious community. Her mother died when Jane was 18 months old, and her father, head of parliament at Dijon, France, became the main influence on her education. She developed into a woman of beauty and refinement, lively and cheerful in temperament. At 21 she married Baron de Chantal, by whom she had six children, three of whom died in infancy. At her castle she restored the custom of daily Mass, and was seriously engaged in various charitable works. Her husband was killed after seven years of marriage, and she sank into deep dejection for four months at her family home. Her father-in-law threatened to disinherit her children if she did not return to his home. He was then 75, vain, fierce and extravagant. Jane Frances managed to remain cheerful in spite of him and his insolent housekeeper.
When she was 32 she met St. Francis de Sales, who became her spiritual director, softening some of the severities imposed by her former director. She wanted to become a nun but he persuaded her to defer this decision. She took a vow to remain unmarried and to obey her director.
After three years Francis told her of his plan to found an institute of women which would be a haven for those whose health, age or other considerations barred them from entering the already established communities. There would be no cloister, and they would be free to undertake spiritual and corporal works of mercy. They were primarily intended to exemplify the virtues of Mary at the Visitation (hence their name, the Visitation nuns): humility and meekness.
The usual opposition to women in active ministry arose and Francis de Sales was obliged to make it a cloistered community following the Rule of St. Augustine. Francis wrote his famous Treatise on the Love of God for them. The congregation (three women) began when Jane Frances was 45. She underwent great sufferings: Francis de Sales died; her son was killed; a plague ravaged France; her daughter-in-law and son-in-law died. She encouraged the local authorities to make great efforts for the victims of the plague and she put all her convent’s resources at the disposal of the sick.
During a part of her religious life she had to undergo great trials of the spirit—interior anguish, darkness and spiritual dryness. She died while on a visitation of convents of the community. Comment:
It may strike some as unusual that a saint should be subject to spiritual dryness, darkness, interior anguish. We tend to think that such things are the usual condition of “ordinary” sinful people. Some of our lack of spiritual liveliness may indeed be our fault. But the life of faith is still one that is lived in trust, and sometimes the darkness is so great that trust is pressed to its limit.
St. Vincent de Paul said of Jane Frances: “She was full of faith, yet all her life had been tormented by thoughts against it. While apparently enjoying the peace and easiness of mind of souls who have reached a high state of virtue, she suffered such interior trials that she often told me her mind was so filled with all sorts of temptations and abominations that she had to strive not to look within herself...But for all that suffering her face never lost its serenity, nor did she once relax in the fidelity God asked of her. And so I regard her as one of the holiest souls I have ever met on this earth” (Butler’s Lives of the Saints).
St. Jerome (342-420AD) on Tradition
**LUTHERANS, CALVINISTS, METHODISTS, BAPTISTS ETC.......
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Diane PathieuKatie DeLong
MILWAUKEE – A TODAY’S TMJ4 follow up: have you seen them? Real billboards of real families, opening up their lives to be accepted.The signs are now up for the first time. They’re bright, colorful and attention-getting…and they were unveiled Tuesday morning.“I think it’s a good idea. There’s nothing wrong with it,” one passer-by said Tuesday.That’s the idea: acceptance. Thirty billboards and signs are going up all across Milwaukee and Waukesha counties. The idea is called the “Gay Neighbor Initiative” and was created by several organizations, and backed financially by local donors. The billboards feature local people and the idea is to get people talking about and being open to gay families and support fairness for everyone.“I think it will be more effective because people can actually look at them and get the time to read what it says and absorb what it says,” one person said.Click on the link under related content for more information on the campaign.
By Kathleen Gilbert
KANSAS CITY, MO, August 19, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - If the bodies on display at "Bodies Revealed" could speak, they might tell a more horrifying tale than the morbid fascination their visitors pay for.
The company behind "Bodies Revealed," an exhibition featuring preserved corpses variously posed, sliced and flayed, has shipped hundreds of corpses and organs around the United States in numerous displays. These displays attract visitors by claiming to inspire a "reverence for life" by respectfully displaying bodies in a way "that informs but doesn't overwhelm."
The display has frequently drawn criticism for what some consider its tacky exploitation of human bodies: one corpse, for example, flayed with a chunk missing from its head to display the brain, takes a ride on a bicycle. Among the critics is Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City, who according to NZ Catholic newspaper called the display a sort of "human taxidermy" that "degrades the actual people who, through their bodies, once lived, loved, prayed and died."
But Premier Exhibitions, the producer of "Bodies Revealed" and "Bodies: The Exhibition", justifies the display by highlighting their dignity and educational value as medical specimens. They explain on the "Bodies Revealed" website that, like all human specimens used for medical purposes, "A human body must be obtained through a legal, willed body donation program. Willed body donation is an anonymous process with donor names universally withheld to protect the privacy of the individual donors and their families."
But when the exhibit arrived at Union Station in Kansas City last February, the Catholic Key, the diocesan newspaper of Kansas City, asked for proof that the donors of the bodies had actually signed any anatomical gift form.
What they found was alarming.
Although Union Station presented one such form, claiming that it was a translation of the one the body donors signed, the newspaper discovered it was only an example of a form, written by a non-affiliated company. Premier later confirmed this. The Catholic Key, as well as the press and legislatures in other states where the exhibits are displayed, are now questioning whether the body donors ever signed such a document.
Not one of the bodies that curious American consumers are shelling out $24 to see are American: they are Chinese. A scholarly article published online by the Nanjing Medical University reveals an eerie discrepancy: while hundreds of Chinese bodies tour the U.S., Chinese medical universities suffer from a dearth of donated cadavers.
Dr. Jiong Ding, one of the authors of the report and Chair of Anatomy at the University, explained to the Key that the problem is inherent in Chinese culture, which pays great respect to the bodies of the deceased. As a result, Nanjing Medical University receives less than 30 bodies per year, when they need at least 80 for teaching purposes.
But if not from the medical community, where did Premier Exhibitions' bodies come from?
ABC's "20/20" investigated the facility that provided Premier with the bodies - Dr. Hong Jin Sui's Dalian Medical University Plastination Co. When ABC's reporter asked the manager of the facility about the source of the cadavers, he claimed ignorance. But according to the Key, Dr. Hong Jin Sui said in a sworn affidavit, "All of the specimens are unclaimed bodies initially received by the Bureau of Police and then donated to the University and other universities in China for education and research."
LifeSiteNews reported in 2006 that Premier Exhibitions, asked about the steady supply of bodies from China, claimed that they "want to do what is morally and legally correct." They told the New York Times that they "traced the whole process. None of these [bodies] would be executed prisoners." (See http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2006/aug/06080907.html)
Congressman Chris Smith (R.-NJ) thinks otherwise. He told ABC, "There is a due diligence that has to be done, particularly coming from a totalitarian dictatorship where execution of prisoners and a general lack of value for human life are paramount." According to Amnesty International, state executions are so frequent in China that the government dispatches "execution vans," and may lethally inject as many as 8,000 people per year.
Smith plans to request that the attorney general investigate Premier Exhibitions, and is calling for a moratorium on the shows.
The Catholic Key reports Democratic Assembly member Fiona Ma is taking similar action in California, and her bill requiring specific written permission for bodies in such exhibits has garnered strong support in the state legislature.
As a Chinese American who visited a "Bodies" show in Sacramento, Ma grew suspicious when she discovered the cadavers' Chinese origins. "I know that few people in China would voluntarily donate their organs or bodies," she said.
Calling the shows "grave robbing and abuse," she condemned companies who have not obtained written consent as benefitting "at the expense of someone's son, father, daughter or unborn who did not want to be there."See Related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:
Plastinated Body Display "Objectifies" People Edmonton Bishops Warnhttp://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2008/may/08052705.html
Flayed and Partially Dissected Human Bodies Displayed in Ontario Science Centre Exhibithttp://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2005/oct/05101405.html
Rest in Pieces: Ghoulish Corpse Display Industry Creates Mummy Demand in Chinahttp://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2006/aug/06080907.html
St. Peter's Basilica and Other Traditional Catholic Sites Attracting Fewer Newchurcher Pilgrims The Government of the City of Rome Is Therefore Planning to Build a DisneyRome To Attract the Money of the Faithless Newchurchers
The theme park, based on EuroDisney in Paris, is expected to be built on a lot of more than 4,000,000 square metres in three to four years. Pilgrims, who formerly were attracted to the traditional Roman churches, would instead be offered rides through a replica of the Colosseum, where they could watch gladiators fighting each other or wild animals, as Julius Caesar looks on. The park would offer attractions based on life both in republican Rome, ending with the murder of Julius Caesar and civil war, and the power and might of the Roman Empire.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
WHAT IS GOING ON IN CALIFORNIA?? FIRST THEY ALLOW QUEERS TO "MARRY", THEN THEY BAN HOMESCHOOLING AND NOW THIS!!:
Monday, August 18, 2008
College presidents from about 100 of the nation's best-known universities, including Duke, Dartmouth and Ohio State, are calling on lawmakers to consider lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18, saying current laws actually encourage dangerous binge drinking on campus.
The movement called the Amethyst Initiative began quietly recruiting presidents more than a year ago to provoke national debate about the drinking age.
"This is a law that is routinely evaded," said John McCardell, former president of Middlebury College in Vermont who started the organization. "It is a law that the people at whom it is directed believe is unjust and unfair and discriminatory."
Other prominent schools in the group include Syracuse, Tufts, Colgate, Kenyon and Morehouse.
But even before the presidents begin the public phase of their efforts, which may include publishing newspaper ads in the coming weeks, they are already facing sharp criticism.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving says lowering the drinking age would lead to more fatal car crashes. It accuses the presidents of misrepresenting science and looking for an easy way out of an inconvenient problem. MADD officials are even urging parents to think carefully about the safety of colleges whose presidents have signed on.
"It's very clear the 21-year-old drinking age will not be enforced at those campuses," said Laura Dean-Mooney, national president of MADD.
Both sides agree alcohol abuse by college students is a huge problem.
Research has found more than 40 percent of college students reported at least one symptom of alcohol abuse or dependance. One study has estimated more than 500,000 full-time students at four-year colleges suffer injuries each year related in some way to drinking, and about 1,700 die in such accidents.
A recent Associated Press analysis of federal records found that 157 college-age people, 18 to 23, drank themselves to death from 1999 through 2005.
Moana Jagasia, a Duke University sophomore from Singapore, where the drinking age is lower, said reducing the age in the U.S. could be helpful.
"There isn't that much difference in maturity between 21 and 18," she said. "If the age is younger, you're getting exposed to it at a younger age, and you don't freak out when you get to campus." (I disagree!! There is a HUGE difference between 18 & 21).
McCardell's group takes its name from ancient Greece, where the purple gemstone amethyst was widely believed to ward off drunkenness if used in drinking vessels and jewelry. He said college students will drink no matter what, but do so more dangerously when it's illegal.
The statement the presidents have signed avoids calling explicitly for a younger drinking age. Rather, it seeks "an informed and dispassionate debate" over the issue and the federal highway law that made 21 the de facto national drinking age by denying money to any state that bucks the trend.
But the statement makes clear the signers think the current law isn't working, citing a "culture of dangerous, clandestine binge-drinking," and noting that while adults under 21 can vote and enlist in the military, they "are told they are not mature enough to have a beer." Furthermore, "by choosing to use fake IDs, students make ethical compromises that erode respect for the law." (They are binge drinking because they are covering up the guilt of their sins - THEY NEED A GOOD CONFESSION)
"I'm not sure where the dialogue will lead, but it's an important topic to American families and it deserves a straightforward dialogue," said William Trout, president of Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn., who has signed the statement.
But some other college administrators sharply disagree that lowering the drinking age would help. University of Miami President Donna Shalala, who served as secretary of health and human services under President Clinton, declined to sign. (Some common sense from liberal Donna)
"I remember college campuses when we had 18-year-old drinking ages, and I honestly believe we've made some progress," Shalala said in a telephone interview. "To just shift it back down to the high schools makes no sense at all." (We have enough high schoolers drinking now!)
McCardell claims that his experiences as a president and a parent, as well as a historian studying Prohibition, have persuaded him the drinking age isn't working.
But critics say McCardell has badly misrepresented the research by suggesting that the decision to raise the drinking age from 18 to 21 may not have saved lives.
In fact, MADD CEO Chuck Hurley said, nearly all peer-reviewed studies looking at the change showed raising the drinking age reduced drunk-driving deaths. A survey of research from the U.S. and other countries by the Centers for Disease Control and others reached the same conclusion.
McCardell cites the work of Alexander Wagenaar, a University of Florida epidemiologist and expert on how changes in the drinking age affect safety. But Wagenaar himself sides with MADD in the debate.
The college presidents "see a problem of drinking on college campuses, and they don't want to deal with it," Wagenaar said in a telephone interview. "It's really unfortunate, but the science is very clear." (These are supposed to be highly intelligent , highly paid professionals)
Another scholar who has extensively researched college binge-drinking also criticized the presidents' initiative.
"I understand why colleges are doing it, because it splits their students, and they like to treat them all alike rather than having to card some of them. It's a nuisance to them," said Henry Wechsler of the Harvard School of Public Health.
But, "I wish these college presidents sat around and tried to work out ways to deal with the problem on their campus rather than try to eliminate the problem by defining it out of existence," he said. (Amen!)
Duke faced accusations of ignoring the heavy drinking that formed the backdrop of 2006 rape allegations against three lacrosse players. The rape allegations proved to be a hoax, but the alcohol-fueled party was never disputed.
Duke senior Wey Ruepten said university officials should accept the reality that students are going to drink and give them the responsibility that comes with alcohol.
"If you treat students like children, they're going to act like children," he said.
Duke President Richard Brodhead declined an interview request. But he wrote in a statement on the Amethyst Initiative's Web site that the 21-year-old drinking age "pushes drinking into hiding, heightening its risks." It also prevents school officials "from addressing drinking with students as an issue of responsible choice."
Hurley, of MADD, has a different take on the presidents.
"They're waving the white flag," he said.
( I turned 18 when they changed the law to 18 in 1971 and I can promise you that this would be the BIGGEST mistake they could make. If they think they have binge drinking now, they haven't seen ANYTHING yet!)
Infants’ hearts removed before brain death
A recent New England Journal of Medicine article (NEJM) backs up the objections of various pro-life groups, as well as some scientists and physicians, to vital organ donation that occurs after the diagnosis of “brain death.” The problem, say the authors of the NEJM article, is that in many cases these patients may not be dead at all.
On the heels of the NEJM article is an ABC News article about doctors removing infants’ hearts, to be used in transplants, before “brain death” has set in. As the NEJM article and recent stories have illustrated, brain death is an unsupportable criterion for true death.
From ABC News:
Doctors are locked in debate over a new approach to infant heart transplants, in which surgeons remove the organs of babies before they are declared brain dead.
Some say the approach saves lives by providing more viable organs to babies who have a chance at survival. But others say the practice devalues one life to try and save another.
The protocol, known as transplantation after declaration of cardiocirculatory death (DCD), allows for the transfer of organs following the stoppage of the heart, rather than brain death. In cases where the parents choose not to resuscitate, their infant's organs could be removed about a minute-and-a-half after the heart stops beating.
This type of organ transplant has previously been done with adult donors, and a new study looking at the use of the method in three infants determined that the transplants were just as successful as those taken from infant donors following brain death.
Read the rest of the ABC News article here:
About the NEJM article, from LifeSiteNews:
Key experts in the medical field have, since its inception, considered the 1968 invention of 'brain death' and the more recent criteria of 'cardiac death' as unsupportable criteria for true death. If it is true, however, that brain death and cardiac death are invalid as criteria for true death, it would make morally illicit vital organ donation, since such donation would in some cases result directly in the killing of the donor for the purpose of harvesting his organs.
The two authors of the article in the NEJM, both proponents of organ donation, argue that "as an ethical requirement for organ donation, the dead donor rule has required unnecessary and unsupportable revisions of the definition of death."
The article was co-authored by Dr. Robert D. Truog, a professor of medical ethics and anesthesia (pediatrics) in the Departments of Anesthesia and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and the Division of Critical Care Medicine at Children's Hospital Boston and Dr. Franklin G. Miller, a faculty member in the Department of Bioethics, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda , MD.
The many cases hitting the media of patients pronounced 'brain dead' and living to tell their stories have already led the public to question the notion of 'brain death'. A recent case in France where a patient revived on the operating table as surgeons were about to remove his organs, is only the latest in a string of such events.
Read the rest of the article here:
New England Journal of Medicine claims that only about 10 percent of drug-induced side effects are reported
Critics say that the reasons to avoid using the HPV vaccine, Gardasil, continue to pile up in the form of thousands of instances of severe side effects, including numerous deaths. In response to the mounting evidence that the vaccine may not be safe for widespread use, the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) is slated to release a study in October that will attempt to determine the validity of these reports.
Judicial Watch, a public interest group, has closely monitored Gardasil since it was released by creator Merck in 2006, periodically detailing statistics on the numerous side effects users have experienced. The most recent report alleges that the drug has been responsible for 21 deaths and 9,749 adverse reactions, including 78 outbreaks of genital warts and 10 miscarriages.
As daunting as these current statistics are, it seems that even they may be gravely underestimating the health risks associated with using Gardasil. A study by the New England Journal of Medicine claims that only about 10 percent of drug-induced side effects are reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS).
Furthermore, FiercePharma.com claims that experts have criticized the actual effectiveness of the cervical cancer vaccine, saying Merck has exaggerated the drug's usefulness.
Monday, August 18, 2008
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Also - please pray for my friends Bob and Carol - Carol has a large tumor that some doctors think might by ovarian cancer - they are going to do surgery on her on Tuesday morning - we pray that it is not cancer, but most importantly we pray that Bob and Carol become true Catholics and save their souls. Bob is very scared - they have no children or family anywhere near them.
They are decent moral people - please keep them in your prayers.
Bridget - you're on your own for a week or so.