The Privacy Commission released their report yesterday, clearing the CHRC of breaching Nelly Hechme’s privacy rights. You can read it here. Here is their conclusion:
Technological experts have indicated that, most likely, but without certainty, the association of the complainant’s IP address to the CHRC was simply a mismatch on the part of a third party, which could have occurred in a variety of ways not involving the CHRC.
What is certain is that there is no evidence of the CHRC having ever collected or improperly used, disclosed or retained any personal information about the complainant.
The technological experts are not the ones who determine whether the CHRC was guilty of hacking into a private citizen’s account. They only tell you what is possible and what is not. Notice the report’s caveat identified above in red.
There is, in fact, PLENTY of evidence that SOMEONE at the CHRC – even if it was not the investigators or third parties associated with this case – knew very well that the connection used was going to breach someone’s privacy.
Did the Privacy Commission even ask what method the CHRC used to login to the Stormfront account? The CHRC has admitted using other ISPs and cloaking software in the past to avoid the CHRC’s IP address showing up on the log files of the discussion boards they spy on. What did the CHRC use when they logged into Stormfront on December 8, 2006? Why doesn’t the CHRC produced this evidence?
For the Privacy Commission to conclude that there is “no evidence” of using Mr. Hechme’s connection is absurd IF one is interested in the testimony given at the CHRT last year. During the March 25, 2008 hearing, Dean Steacy admitted to being logged on to the “Jadewarr” account at the same time that Hechme’s IP address showed up on Stormfront’s logs. And not only that, but he indirectly refers to the Bell representative’s testimony about Hechme’s account to help him place the date and time when he logged in to Stormfront discussion board! (And we even have hard evidence from another case that indeed Steacy had logged in on December 8, 2006. See also Part A, Section 3C-5B of The Blogosphere Cross Examination ).
Why would Steacy use the Bell representative’s testimony concerning Hechme’s internet account if it was totally unrelated and coincidental to the CHRC’s access of the Stormfront board? This is the question I want answered. The Privacy Commission would have us believe that it was one big coincidence — that the CHRC and Hechme’s IP address were both accessing the Jadewarr account at the same time. How absurd is that? If that were the case, then Steacy’s testimony above makes NO sense.
“No evidence?” Not quite.
Gentle reader, does this sound to you that the CHRC never “collected or improperly used, disclosed or retained any personal information about the complainant“? If you think so, I seriously doubt that all the Kool Aid in Lake Ontario would change your mind.
The Privacy Commission simply didn’t do its job or review the case properly. Nor has it addressed what the Blogosphere has discovered. It even refused to accept over 200 pages of evidence from Marc Lemire, a person who is at the center of the whole controversy with the CHRC’s rogue tactics.
According to the summary provided by the Privacy Commissioner, they conducted “numerous on-site interviews with CHRC officials.” While the Privacy Commissioner did interview the Canadian Human Rights Commission, they refused to accept close to 200 pages of documents filed by Marc Lemire which documented the allegations. (Source)
Of course, when you’re interested in the truth, you stop drinking the government Kool Aid and you open the investigation to receiving evidence from EVERYONE, especially those connected to the case — not just accepting testimony from the agency under investigation. Where did the Privacy Commission learn this kind of Kangaroo Kourt tactics? Let me guess, the CHRT perhaps?
I don’t know what is more pathetic – the fact that this is happening or the fact that I’m not surprised anymore at the law enforcement and their pseudo-satellites in this country.
According to Joseph Brean’s column in the National Post, “Ian Fine, senior general counsel to the CHRC, said he is pleased his investigators have been exonerated, and said he has no explanation for how the apparent mix-up occurred. “We remain in the dark,” he said.”
That’s the problem, isn’t it? Where Canadians are asking for some light, all the investigators give us is darkness.
Vatican could offer personal prelature for Anglican group A conservative Anglican group could be offered the status of a personal prelature if it enters into communion with the Catholic Church, according to the Australian Catholic weekly The Record. The Record reports that the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC), a group that has been exploring entry into the Catholic Church, might be given its own semi-autonomous structure, allowing members to retain many of their traditional Anglican liturgical practices. Such a prelature could also entice other discontented Anglicans to enter the Catholic Church.
First the SSPX and now the Trad ‘Glics. Benedict is on a mission!
An interesting but unusual story recently hit Catholic cyberspace. It appeared in ZENIT, the news agency run by the Legionaries of Christ. Entitled “Believe-it-or-Not Cancer Drug: CellAdam is Natural, Successful and Ethical,” its author interviewed the chariman, president and public relations officer of Biostemworld, the company manufacturing and marketing this supposed wonderdrug. The journalist does a straightforward, one might say uncritical, interview. The “non-profit company” claims its homeopathic drug called “CellAdam” has an astonishing 75% success rate. ZENIT later posted a short note saying they do not endorse the drug: “The views expressed were those of the writer, who was impressed by the faith and sincerity of the company’s Catholic directors and their belief in the treatment’s effectiveness. We recommend that readers interested in the drug do their own research, or wait for the results of the clinical trials that will be completed in the next few years.” That’s if any real and independent clinical trials are actually intended. I would like to believe such a safe and simple cure is possible and is already available. I would also be tickled pink if some devout Catholics were marketing it relatively cheap due to altruistic and religious motives. But what I would like to believe is neither here nor there. “Counterknowledge,” a website dedicated to “exposing conspiracy theories, cults, quack medicine, bogus science and fake history” dissects the ZENIT interview. Note, it is done in a mocking fashion. Some of the comments and links at the end of the article are helpful. Damian Thompson, editor-in-chief of Counterknowledge, writes an online article for the Telegraph reiterating his skepticism of the claims. Matthew Hartfield, a PhD student in genetics and contributor to Counterknowledge, critiquesCelladam.com‘s scientific language. Finally, the same website finds potentially suspicious things with Biostemworld’s business practices. The Competition Bureau of Canada has created a webpage to help one discern online health scams and cancer frauds.
Pope Benedict XVI reaffirms his “full and indisputable solidarity” with the Jewish people in mourning the Holocaust, during his regular weekly public audience on January 28. Although the Pontiff did not explicitly mention the fierce controversy over the published remarks by Bishop Richard Williamson denying the severity of the Holocaust, the intent of the Pope’s remarks was clear as he pointed to commemorations of the genocidal Nazi drive as “an admonition against oblivion, negation, and reductionism.” The Vatican’s new YouTube channel drove home the message of solidarity, offering short videos of the Pope’s visit to Auschwitz and his talk at a synagogue in Cologne.
I can’t believe I just wasted my time trying to defend such ridiculous accusations. All of the anti-Catholic yocals on this board should apologize for slandering the Pope.
I doubt very much that most non-Catholics here really understand what a sacrament is, much less what holy orders is and what it is not. Once you have been baptized or receive holy orders, you receive a spiritual “mark” on your soul. So, when you die that mark will continue on for eternity — whether in heaven or in hell. That is why sometimes you will hear the phrase “a priest for life” because once you have been ordained then you retain that spiritual existence FOREVER AND EVER AMEN. Now what can be REMOVED is your capacity as a priest to administer the sacraments like confect the Eucharist (i.e. change it from bread and wine to the body and blood of Jesus) and forgive sins (by virtue of the Priesthood of Jesus Christ) and even to teach in the Church’s name. So, while you remain a priest and CAPABLE of doing these things, the Church may PROHIBIT you – sometimes permanently — from doing so. Sometimes a priest seeks to enter the lay state voluntarily and this sanction will be imposed. Other times, the Church will impose it — as in the case of sexual abusers.
So this is the difference between being “laicized” i.e. having your “legal powers” stripped and being “unordained” which is impossible according to Catholic teaching. Just like it is impossible to become “unbaptized”, much to the chagrin of a few Italian atheists who were in the news attempting such a thing — as if erasing the baptismal record from the books would change what happened as a historical fact.
#2 – Code of Canon Law:
In lifting the excommunication, the Pope was acting in the capacity as Supreme Pontiff and Judge over the law that he is ultimately responsible for – the Code of Canon Law:
The Code of Canon Law, for your information, is not merely an ecclesiastical set of rules but played a significant role in our current secular legal system. People who like to separate the State and Religion are really quite ignorant of their own heritage even in the area of law, and how much they owe to the Catholic Church on this front.
And so the Pope lifted the excommunication on the matter before him which was the excommunication of Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre and the four bishops he consecrated in defiance of John Paul II back in 1988. The Pope told him he could consecrate one bishop acceptable to the Holy See. Lefebvre consecrated 4, none of which were acceptable to Rome at the time. Hence, the excommunication. Williamson, a former Anglican no less, was one of those 4.
And so, the lifting of the excommunication had nothing to do with Williamson’s anti-semetic views. Nothing. I must confess, I am getting a little sick and tired of this anti-semitic “boogeyman” being played on an issue where anti-semitism is merely ancillary to the central question at hand. What sane person would accuse a judge of negligence when he seeks to hand down a sentence on the case before him instead of what the accused has done in the past? The case was about papal authority and seeking to establish communion with ONE MILLION LOST souls. One flaky bishop is hardly going to stand in the way of that, whatever his views on a historical question.
#3 – Excommunication: Lifting of excommunication does not necessarily mean the person is back in full communion with the Catholic Church. Back in the 60s, Pope Paul VI lifted the excommunication on the Patriarch of Constantinople (and the Patriarch did the same to the Pope ). Did that mean that both Churches are in Communion with one another? Of course not. Likewise with Williamson and the other three SSPX bishops. They still have to submit to papal authority and tone down their rather uncharitable language in dealing with the Holy See. Lifting of excommunication is the first step, not the last one in restoring full communion.
So this business of Williamson being “reinstated” that the yocals on this board keep yammering on about is completely bogus. What “reinstatement” are we talking about? Since his illicit consecration, he was a valid bishop before, during, and now after the excommunication so there was no “reinstatement” on that front. And there was no reinstatement of anything since as far as jurisdiction goes either.
#4 – End Game: Much as it will come as a surprise to the “speak-first-think-later” types on this Board, Williamson’s days of anti-semitism – at least the way it was – are already numbered. Being excommunicated, the Pope would not exercise his authority and universal jurisdiction over them. They were “free birds” to say what they liked with no oversight or submission. But, now that they are moving towards full reconciliation, once that point is reached, Williamson is going to be given a direct order from the Pope to shut up. I see that Bishop Fellay, the superior general of the society, has already silenced him because of the uproar. It won’t get any better for Williamson once he kisses the Pope’s foot either. Either Williamson will shut up permanently or he will break off again — this time by himself and perhaps with a few hundred devotees, and become a footnote in history. Either way, the Pope and the Church wins. Bring the whole SSPX in and then peel off the undesirable elements.
So for all the bleating and moaning of the Zionists on this board, the Pope (like previous Popes before him) will have succeeded in being a Jew’s best friend.
Well, I saw a comment in the linked thread above which is rather disturbing to say the least….
It may interest readers of this article to know that the university is now planning to charge the involved students from the Campus Pro-Life Club with Non-Academic Misconduct: “conduct which causes injury to a person and/or damage to university property… the unauthorized removal and/or possession of university property, and conduct which seriously disturbs the lawful educational and related activities of other students/staff.”
If this is true, it will take the free speech debate to another level completely. It’s not simply about denying “club status” any more, but it becomes about making Pro-Lifers and Christians second class citizens who are not welcome at Canada’s universities.
Dark times ahead.
Or perhaps, we’ll simply create our own universities and let the pro-abort ones die off. We will, after all, have the numbers.
A young student friend e-mailed me on Tuesday night.
“Have locked myself in my room because the place is full of little idiots — who cannot spell Barack Obama’s name and could not name one of his foreign or domestic policies — running around screaming obscenities about George Bush, conservatives and how Sarah Palin is a bitch. I love democracy!”
Even so, the people spoke. A victory for the hysterical Oprah Winfrey, the mad racist preacher Jeremiah Wright, the mainstream media who abandoned any sense of objectivity long ago, Europeans who despise America largely because they depend on her, comics who claim to be dangerous and fearless but would not dare attack genuinely powerful special interest groups. A victory for Obama-worshippers everywhere.
A victory for the cult of the cult. A man who has done little with his life but has written about his achievements as if he had found the cure for cancer in between winning a marathon and building a nuclear reactor with his teeth. Victory for style over substance, hyperbole over history, rabble-raising over reality.
A victory for Hollywood, the most dysfunctional community in the world. Victory for Streisand, Spielberg, Soros and Sarandon.
Victory for those who prefer welfare to will and interference to independence. For those who settle for group think and herd mentality rather than those who fight for individual initiative and the right to be out of step with meagre political fashion….(Source)
I’m growing in my appreciation and admiration of Michael Coren. He is one of the few contrary and courageous journalist/columnists in Canada. These are the ones (along with some AM radio talk-show hosts, bloggers and web pundits) that the new statist governments infecting the West, and their lagdogs in the Mainstream Media (MSM), are trying to silence through intimidation via Human Rights Tribunals, anti-hate laws, and endless complaints or threats of suits to their publishers and editors. Statist group-think does not suffer independent thinking and dissent. The leftist faceless bureaucrats want to do the thinking for you. And all you have to do is just pay and obey. And truth is, most of the masses – from university students to the public “intellectuals” – willingly do. They are either too caught up in feeling good about themselves (i.e. feeling more “open,” “intelligent,” and “tolerant” than the redneck bigots to the right) or are happily distracted with contemporary societies equivalent to bread and circuses (i.e. shopping, sex, and socializing). To be fair I guess many people are simply preoccupied with their own careers and families to take much note of the world sinking into a moral and spiritual morass.
“There was a time when the church was very powerful in the time when the early Christians rejoiced at being deemed worthy to suffer for what they believed. In those days the church was not merely a thermometer that recorded the ideas and principles of popular opinion; it was a thermostat that transformed the mores of society. Whenever the early Christians entered a town, the people in power became disturbed and immediately sought to convict the Christians for being “disturbers of the peace” and outside agitators. But the Christians pressed on in the conviction that they were “a colony of heaven” called to obey God rather than man. Small in number they were big in commitment. They were too God-intoxicated to be “astronomically intimidated.” By their effort and example they brought an end to such ancient evils as infanticide.” Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (Letter from a Birmingham jail, June 12, 1963)
Somehow I think FOCA would have appalled Dr. King.
Praised by Jesus Christ and Blessed Be His Mother for All Generations (Luke 1:48)!!!!
The 40 Days for Life is in full organizational swing. Here are some developments…
1)And then there were five!Edmonton has joined Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal in representing Canada in this international effort. There are about 115 U.S. cities participating, 5 Canadian, and even 1 in Australia (Brisbane). 40 Days for Life is catching like fire around the world — the fire of the Holy Spirit to burn away the complacency and self pity in the pro-life movement. It is precisely during these days that God uses to bring about remarkable transformation — when things look hopeless is when things are really the most hopeful because it is then that God raises up the powerless and the meek to crush the strong and the arrogant. Take a look around today at the social and political landscape surrounding abortion. Does it not look like the other side has won everything? Indeed it does, but that will be their downfall. As Jesus said, “The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” (Matthew 7:27)
2)February 3 Information Meeting – Just a friendly reminder that the Ottawa Campaign will be holding its General Information Session for all participants, including Parish and Group Representatives to promote the 40 Days For Life Campaign. Time & Place: next Tuesday February 3 at St. Pat’s Scavi from 7 to 9 pm. This is a very important meeting. Please plan to be there as there are many important matters to discuss.
3) Promotion Campaign – As part of our efforts in this 40 Days Campaign, we will be looking to use your generous donations in various media outlets. In particular, we would like to focus on the airwaves in Ottawa to get the word out about the 40 Days Campaign. We also need to shine the light and remind people in Ottawa that 2300 abortions take place at the Morgentaler Abortion Mill every year.
4) Manly Men – We need 3 or 4 manly looking men under 50 to pose at Ground Zero (at the regular prayer zone outside of the Morgentaler Mill) for some banner ads which we are developing. The target of these ads is to awaken the men in our churches to step up and take some responsibility for witnessing against abortion. If you are one of these manly men, please contact me at 40days @ socon.ca. 5)Vigil Time Frame – We have to decide on a time frame for the vigil — whether it will be 12 or 24 hours for at least part of the 40 days, due to the colder weather. Your presence at the Information meeting will be beneficial in finding out which way we will go. Personally, I would prefer to keep the 24 hour vigil since progress on the spiritual front comes from sacrifice and keeping the bar high. However, since many of the early morning hours were taken by our seniors during the last campaign, there has to be a shift in demographics during this time period if we end up taking the harder road. The younger people need to step up and commit to filling in the early morning slots. It’s time to step up, folks.Regards,
SANREMO, ITALY, January 23, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Italian singer Giuseppe Povia is making waves in Italy with his new song recounting the conversion of a homosexual to heterosexuality.
The piece, which is to be performed for the first time at the Sanremo Festival in Sanremo, Italy on February 21, tells the true story of Luca di Tolve, a young man who recently spoke of his conversion in the Italian newspaper Il Giornale.
Tolve attributes his former homosexuality to the divorce of his parents during his childhood, when his father left. “I remained alone in a feminine environment, playing with dolls. It is a mistake to believe that people are born gay,” he said in the interview. “You fall in love with a man because that is what you would have wanted to be.”
That might be the most devastatingly true statement you will ever hear about homosexuality.
“Homosexuals experience a frenetic emotional nomadism,” he went on to say. “It is understandable, like anyone, they look for something different from themselves. If in the other they find only something similar, the relationship can’t be more than fleeting and compulsive. Stability and fidelity can’t exist in the gay world.”
Povia stated last December that he has converted two homosexual friends to heterosexuality, both of whom are now married, and said that “one is not born homosexual, but is converted to it.” He is also known to have participated in the 2007 Family Day in Rome, organized to defend the right to life and family values.
Heretic! Heretic! Call the Rainbow police! We are mightily offended! Call the Human Rights Commission! Call the Hate Crimes Unit! There ought to be a law! Fine them. Imprison them. Shut them up!
Homosexual activists, enraged by Tolve’s account and Povia’s song, have accused Tolve of lying, and have begun a Facebook account to bring together those who wish to prevent Povia from singing at the Sanremo Festival. The organization “Arcigay” has reportedly threatened to disrupt the event.
In addition, European Parliament Deputy Vittorio Agnoleto has reportedly presented the case to the European Court of Human Rights and has asked the Parliament to review the song, claiming that its lyrics constitute a violation of the rights of homosexuals.
Like there’s such a big surprise here at the Rainbow Crowd’s reaction, eh? How can this movement survive beyond the foreseeable future when it is so brittle and weak that it cannot withstand even the mildest criticism or rejection? Homosexualism is the most protected and fascist sexual movement ever.
As the only practicing Catholic in my workplace, my ‘lifestyle choice’ is frequently a topic of discussion. The majority of my co-workers simply do not understand the Church’s teaching around contraception and family planning. Most know that the Church officially condemns all forms of contraception, but they also understand that many Catholic’s choose to ignore the Church’s prohibition regarding contraception.
In many ways, my workplace could be seen as a microcosm of society. There is a pervasive ignorance about why the Church teaches what it does. There is also a misunderstanding of how some Catholics are able to conform their will to these teachings. It is therefore imperative that married Catholic couples be able to explain the Church teaching as well as how they have been able to live up to it.
One approach is to call a spade a spade when confronting the current culture. In other words, you tell the pagans why they are wrong, why you are right and why they will go to hell if they don’t stop doing what they are doing. While this approach may have its place (i.e. telling a priest who should know better to stop promoting homosexual behaviour) in most cases, it would lack charity. Additionally, I would argue that many individuals who contracept probably do not meet all of the conditions necessary to be committing mortal sins.
With this in mind, faithful Catholics must discern how they should go forth and make disciples in their everyday lives. In my experience, I have found that it is better to discuss what the Church is for rather than what the Church is against. The old saying that you attract more bees with honey is the idea here. Secondly, we must also be able to explain in simplest terms the philosophical difference between contraception and natural family planning so that more people will see NFP as a viable alternative to contraception.
In his book Sex and the Marriage Covenant, John Kippley provides a simple explanation for those who argue that NFP is nothing more than a Catholic form of contraception. Kippley points out that the end does not justify the means; that is, the same end or purpose does not make all the means of achieving that goal moral. For example, owning a nice car is a reasonable goal, yet no one would argue that stealing a car or working five days a week at McDonalds in order to buy the car are morally the same. Secondly, Kippley says that there is an infinite difference between DOING and NOT DOING. The couple that uses contraception is DOING something that acts to prevent the possible creation of a new human being. In contrast, the couple using NFP to avoid or postpone pregnancy is simply NOT DOING intercourse during the fertile times.
Ultimately, however, I have found that people respond positively to stories of love. Any story that compels the listener to consider the divinity of Christ is the most effective means I know to change the culture.
When explaining the difference between natural family planning and contraception to my co-workers, I encourage them to visualize a scenario that was described to me a few years ago. I begin by telling them to imagine for a moment that Christ has come to the door of their home. Christ then knocks on the door and desires to come in to your home and have dinner with you and your family. The NFP couple that desires to have a child has left the door open and they rush to the front door upon hearing the gentle knocking of Christ. They then fully embrace Him and invite him to share a piece of his cross with them. If the NFP couple does not want a child at that time, they have at least left the door unlocked. They recognize the depth of their sin and may not want Christ to enter their home. In their hearts however, they say to Christ “We are not worthy to have you in our presence, however, if you so will it, come on in, the door is open.” In contrast, those who use contraception lock the door to their home and ignore the One who desires to come in. In essence they say, “go away, for you will be a burden and we will have to feed you.” The motivation for the NFP couple is an uncertain future, but one that is filled with trust. The contracepting couple, in contrast, is motivated by fear and in some cases selfishness.
Make no mistake about it, contraception, if taken to its logical conclusion, is the death of the human race. Throughout centuries of war and conflict, Satan has always sought this end, but to no avail. Contraception is a hidden war as the body rages against itself. It is a re-ordering of the natural biochemical processes within the body so that there is conflict and chaos. Death enchroaches on the beginning of life through stealth as if life itself was the enemy.
While the future looks bleak, we must remind ourselves that there is always hope. Life will spring forth from those who leave the contraceptive culture and the forces of light will grow strong again. NFP couples will bring forth new reinforcements for the culture war. The new recruits will stand firm until Christ makes his return. Victory is assured, although many souls will be lost. Recalling the last instalment of the Lord of the Rings, the poor, deluded souls who serve the contraceptive culture will share the same fate as the orcs at the gates of Mordor: after the defeat of Sauron and the return of the KING, they will be swallowed up into the abyss.
VATICAN CITY, JAN. 19, 2009 (Zenit.org).- There’s no place like home when it comes to learning life lessons such as peace, work, concord and respect, says Benedict XVI.
The Pope affirmed this Sunday in a talk he gave via video link to crowds gathered at the shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City. The group had just concluded the closing Mass of the 6th World Meeting of Families, which began in the Mexican capital last Wednesday.
The Pontiff sent as legate to the event his secretary of state, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, who presided over the closing Mass.
Benedict XVI assured the group that he had participated actively in the Family Meeting, particularly through his prayer, but also though guidelines and follow up of the preparations.
In his message Sunday, he encouraged families to stay close to God in prayer.
“How beautiful it is,” the Pope said, “to gather as a family to allow God to speak to the hearts of the members through his living and effective Word. In prayer, especially with the praying of the rosary, as was done yesterday, the family contemplates the mysteries of the life of Jesus, interiorizes the values that it meditates and feels called to incarnate them in their lives.”
The Holy Father called the family an “indispensable base for society and for peoples, as well as an irreplaceable good for children, worthy of coming into life as a fruit of love, of the parents’ total and generous surrender.”
He said it was Jesus himself who revealed the importance of families, in “honoring the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph.”
The family, the Pontiff continued, which “occupies a primary place in the education of the person [...] is a true school of humanity and perennial values. No one has given being to himself. We have received life from others, which is developed and matured with the truths and values that we learn in relation and communion with the rest. In this sense, the family founded on the indissoluble matrimony between a man and a woman expresses this relational, filial and communitarian dimension, and is the realm where man can be born with dignity, grow and develop in an integral way.”
The Bishop of Rome said that the family’s educative task is made difficult today by a “deceptive concept” of freedom, which exalts whims and impulses “to the point of leaving each one locked within the prison of his own ‘I.’”
“The true liberty of the human being comes from having been created in the image and likeness of God, and therefore should be exercised with responsibility, always opting for the true good so that it becomes love, gift of self,” he said.
And it is here that the family has such a big role to play, Benedict XVI explained.
“For this,” he said, “more than theories, the intimacy and love characteristic of the familial community are needed. It is in the home where one learns to truly live, to value life and health, liberty and peace, justice and truth, work, concord and respect.”
I think our government mismanaged medical system is a lemon. I have thought so since the 1970s. I do not agree with it in principle or in fact. I remember years ago listening to a man giving a presentation on the glories of OHIP. He actually traveled the world promoting it to other governments. It was part of his job. I was taking philosophy at the time and decided to use an argument given to me by my esteemed Aristotelian professor. I cannot present it in its completeness now but in a nutshell:
Food, shelter, and health care are basic human needs, this we all agree. And most of us would agree that it is an obligation of society to ensure that these basic needs are adequately provided for for all its members insofar as it is possible. (I would add: That no one goes without food or shelter through no fault of their own.) Now in the case of shelter I do not think any of us would want to see someone living on the street for lack of means to adequately house themselves. We would see it as a common obligation to ensure that such a person be given the opportunity to be properly housed, at least with basic accomodations. But I do not think any of us would hold that in order to be fair to this person all persons should be required to live in exactly the same type of basic accomodations as this person. Those who have greater means, or are willing to save and sacrifice more to buy themselves better accomodations, should be allowed to do so. The same holds true for food. While we would not want to see anyone starving and would consider it a common obligation to ensure the destitute are fed, we would not hold that all should eat only what the destitute eat. If someone has the means to eat more or better food than the destitute then most of us would consider it within his right to do so. So, while we should do our best to ensure all receive adequate food and shelter we would not hold that all should receive only adequate or the same food and shelter. Those who have greater means – or may simply be willing to save and sacrifice more for it – should not be denied opportunity to acquire better food or housing. Why not the same thing with medical care? We would not want to see anyone denied basic medical care. But does that mean everyone should be allowed only the same medical care? If someone has greater means, or is willing to save or sacrifice more in order to purchase for themselves better medical care, should they not be able to do so? Yet our current medical system (OHIP) does not permit this (except with things like dental treatment). Is it not just that a person can use what is his own for his own benefit?
… The presenter stared at me like a deer in the headlights. He gave no answer.
I get so tired of media personalities and people you meet talking about how many Americans are without medical insurance. I ask, does that mean they receive no medical care? Where are the news stories about the millions dying in the streets from lack of medical care? The poor receive medical care for free (courtesy of the taxpayer). It is the middle class who often suffer – carrying much of the burden of the poor and having to pay high insurance rates for themselves. Some choose not to be insured and either hope for the best health-wise, or save money for a rainy day. That is their choice. But a major problem with the American system is that when these uninsured middle class go to the hospital they are charged an exaggerated rate for their treatment (the “full rate”) while insurance companies and Medicare pay a much reduced rate for their clients to receive the same treatment. That is a serious flaw.
San Francisco Set to Tax Catholic Church Millions in Suspected Prop 8 Retaliation
By Kathleen Gilbert
SAN FRANCISCO, January 16, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A San Francisco assessor has called for the Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco to hand over $15 million in taxes because of an internal restructuring of the archdiocese, a move that some are describing as “retaliation” for the Church’s opposition to Proposition 8.
Assessor Phil Ting concluded that the Catholic Church owed the city taxes after the archdiocese was restructured and its property, which is almost all used by parish facilities, was consolidated seven months ago.
“Because we knew the accusations (of unfair treatment) could be out there, we worked to look at every single document so we could totally and completely understand their argument,” Ting said. “We looked at all the various exemptions that could have been applied, and we felt that none of them were applicable in this case. That meant it was our determination that this was a taxable event.”
Ting claimed that because the restructuring involved “separate legal entities,” it was “not just a cosmetic” change and therefore liable to be taxed.
The archdiocese immediately filed legal action and questioned the precedent for Ting’s decision.
“San Francisco Recorder Phil Ting has taken a step that is unprecedented in the history of the state of California. He has determined that an internal reorganization of church property, within the family of corporations of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, constitutes a ‘sale’ and is subject to a property transfer tax,” archdiocese spokesman Maurice Healy told the San Francisco Chronicle.
“A tax on transfers of property, all owned by the Catholic Church, within the same family of Archdiocesan corporations, is unprecedented in the history of the state of California and the law is overwhelmingly in our favor on this subject,” said Healy.
Many are decrying the move as retaliation for the church’s support of California’s same-sex “marriage” ban, as pro-homosexual “marriage” San Francisco residents and politicians have made no secret of their ire at the Catholic Church and other religious groups for supporting Proposition 8.
“This is fishy at the least and evil at the most,” Randy Thomasson of California’s Campaign for Children and Families told LifeSiteNews.com. “Phil Ting is doing to the Catholic Church what has not been done in other venues, taking away the Church’s tax-exempt status in regards to property.”
Thomasson said that Ting, “who went head to head with the Catholic church over marriage between a man and a woman … is aiming his rifles … right at the Catholic Church, and this is something that a higher court should be more just in its analysis.”
The call to tax the Catholic and Mormon churches, which helped propel Prop 8 fundraising and campaigning, became a mantra of same-sex “marriage” supporters ever since the amendment passed in November.
During the Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast last year, which was attended by Archbishop Niederauer, Mayor Gavin Newsom lambasted the Catholic Church and the archdiocese for their support for Proposition 8. The crowd reportedly responded with a standing ovation – minus the archbishop and a handful of other religious leaders.
Jack Smith of the Catholic Key blog suggested that Ting, who at a No on 8 rally declared he was “proud” to have signed several same-sex “marriage” certificates, had political motives for the aggressive move.
“Any clear-eyed observer might view this action by Ting, who’s rumored to want the Mayor’s chair after Newsom, as pandering to the anti-Catholic sentiment of voters in San Francisco,” said Smith.
Most people in North America and Europe do not go to church anymore and have no real loyalty or concern about the survival of Christianity. Many have deep-seated anger and even hatred of Christianity for a number of reasons, not least of which is its moral teachings on sex. The “secular” West is really largely made up of ex-Christians or person’s of Christian background rebelling against their heritage. That reality helps explain the contradiction in their intolerance toward Christianity and yet their pandering tolerance of Islam; their indifference to the sufferings of persecuted Christians around the world but their seeming concern about the Falun Gong in China and Muslims in Darfur. So the idea of destroying the Church is not beyond them. Years ago someone asked me when I thought the persecution might intensify in our country (we were talking about the clamour to remove the churches’ tax exempt status among other things). I said it would possibly happen after the older generation of church-goers is gone. They will not do it while they are around – it is their parents and grandparents after all. The secular Boomers may not love the Church but they may love their parents and grandparents – just blame a lot of the conflict between them on the odious beliefs their parents grew up with, due to that damnable Christianity. But after they’re gone… Well we are getting pretty close to there. The only thing that might save us is the Boomers are aging and diminishing in numbers themselves (yet are currently the movers and shakers in our society) while many of the immigrants filling the void are practicing Christians. The immigrants do have a high fall-off rate but those practicing the faith still represents a significant number. This may soften some of the more overt forms of persecution but make financial assaults more attractive. High litigation settlements for various scandals and loss of tax-exempt status are just two of the ways this can be done. – Fr. Elijah
BEIJING, January 16, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) – China’s government-enforced “one child” policy has spurred a tragic spiral of killing, ending with the sentencing to death of a woman found guilty of hiring a hit man to murder her own son so that she might have another child with her new husband.
Li Yingfang was recently sentenced to death by the Shaanxi Higher People’s Court, reports the Shanghai Daily, after a lower court in 2007 had granted her the opportunity to instead serve a life sentence. The lower court had found that she suffered from depression caused by two abortions she had in order to comply with the population law. But due to protests from family and friends of the victim, the higher court ordered her execution.
In 1997, Li, a bank clerk in northern China, gave birth to a son, Cao Yifan, before her husband passed away in 2002. The 36 year old remarried a man surnamed Hou in 2004, who also had a child from a previous marriage.
During her new marriage, Li was coerced into having two abortions by China’s “one child” policy. The policy states that if both partners of a remarried couple have a child from a previous marriage, they are forbidden to have more children upon the threat of severe financial penalties.
Wanting to have a child with her new husband, Li paid a hit man named Wang Ruijie 70,000 yuan (US$10,238) to kill Hou’s daughter. Wang’s November 23, 2006 attack on the young girl failed, so Li turned her attention to her own son, who was living with his grandmother who had taken custody of the boy after his father’s death.
Li planned a meeting between herself, her son and Wang, who had rented a car. Wang drove the nine year old out to the country and, with a piece of cloth provided by Li, proceeded to strangle the boy before dumping his body on the roadside.
Both Li and Wang were given the death sentence but Wang was granted a two year reprieve – meaning he will spend his life in prison if he behaves well enough during the first two years. Both perpetrators have been ordered to pay the grandmother of Cao Yifan 65,000 yuan.
According to the Guardian, China’s official media has suggested that the population policy may be reformed by the government after it released a survey revealing the majority of Chinese women want more than one child. Jiang Fan, vice-minister of the National Family Planning Commission said, “Our research shows that 70.7% of women would like to have two or more babies.”
Fan also noted the growing gender gap among new births, which is at 103-107 boys to every 100 girls, is a “very grave” problem.
However, it was only earlier this week that the chief of Beijing’s family planning commission revealed the Chinese government’s plans to continue its population control policies as well as crack down on families violating the nation’s one-child policy with higher fines. Deng said that the country’s notorious population-control program, which includes forced sterilizations and abortions, would remain unmoved “for another 20 years, when the country’s population reaches a projected peak of 1.5 billion.”
Laws permitting abortion are sick. Laws forcing abortion are sicker. It is emblematic of a very sick and diseased culture that would enforce sterilization and abortion while denying our nature as human beings. And yet, that’s what’s happening. The abortion and the homoerotic onslaught seem bent on running civilization into the ground and it really doesn’t give a damn who it takes down with it.
We are only at the beginning of the demographic collapse and all of the social consequences that are going to come about because of it. All of the fools in charge of the sexual anarchy today will be long buried when the whole thing shakes out. Some future generation will be left with the hefty tab of cleaning up the mess. Just like a liberal, no? And just like what’s happening in the financial markets.
20/20, a popular cable human interest television show, recently had a piece about the growing popularity of so-called “re-borns”. These very life like baby dolls that many women spend a small fortune to acquire, are then dressed, nurtured, and taken for walks in strollers. Some women create elaborate nurseries and even celebrate their birthdays. This absurdity must be a direct consequence of the culture of death. Some of the women interviewed said that they received all the joys of motherhood without the poopy diapers, crying and sleepless nights. It would be very interesting to find out just how many of these women have had abortions or deeply regret their decisions to limit the size of their families. Some may have even waited too long and their fertility has passed them by. Guilt must also be a part of this twisted reality in some way or another. A popular conservative talk show host made an interesting observation. Maybe Planned Parenthood should offer a new re-born with each abortion in order to lessen the guilt of their clients. The slogan could be something like this, “all the nurturing without the mess” or “all the love, without the financial burden” or maybe “no diapers and lots of sleep, who wouldn’t want this baby to keep?” Sad, truly sad.
The 40 Days for Life Lenten Campaign is well underway and we have many things to report….
1) Four Canadian Cities – For this upcoming Lenten Campaign (Feb.25-Apr.5), Ottawa will be joined by Winnipeg, Toronto, and Montreal! That’s right the 40 Days fever is catching on right across the country. We have four cities who are going to storm heaven with prayers and fasting to end this scourge of abortion. God willing, for the next campaign we will double this impressive number.
2) Archbishop – His Grace Archbishop Prendergast has given us his full endorsement and we hope to use it as we approach individual parishes and encourage them to participate. We hope many parishes register for the whole 24-hour days to encourage unity and solidarity as a parish community in this fight against abortion.
3) New Website – To keep up with the surge in interest in the 40 Days for Life Campaign, the National Committee has decided to join our American brothers by using their servers and web look. Check it out here:
The Ottawa site is almost fully developed. The other sites will be update in the next couple of weeks. This will be your central information and communication portal for the campaign. You will be able to learn about the entire 40 Days Campaign, keep up to date on “Ground Zero” dispatches (i.e. reports from the Vigil), note upcoming events, and register for your times, among many other features.
En français s’il vous plaît! – Oui! We will also be setting up a French sister site. We already have one set up for Montreal. Click on the above Montreal link to see how it looks. You can toggle between English and French. How cool is that? Eh?
4) Upcoming Events – As new and important events are planned, you can keep up to date, by viewing the right side bar on the home page or clicking on “Events” on the top menu.
5) Daily Prayer – To build unity around a single prayer, we ask participants to recite our daily prayer every day of the Campaign. Bookmark this link and join with thousands in Ottawa and around the country as we pray….
7) Vigil Registration & Guidelines – We have a more efficient method of collecting vigil registrations. Check out the Vigil link on the top menu. The official one developed by our American friends still has some major glitches in it, so we have developed a home grown
Canadian solution. It’s not perfect, but it’s much better than what we had last during the last campaign. Currently, only Ottawa is set up, but the other Canadian cities will be setup shortly. Some Americans have already expressed interest in using it too! Many
thanks go out to James K. from Winnipeg for developing it.
We are encouraging everyone to signup early and often. The more registrations early on, the less pressure there will be as we begin the campaign. In particular, please consider registering for the first week.
8) C-351 Campaign – 40 Days for Life is our intense period of prayer and fasting. However, in between Campaigns, we need to keep up the spiritual pressure on the Devil, and that’s where C-351 comes into play. You can read about more of this idea here:
9) Calling All Parish Reps – If you were involved in the last 40 Days Campaign as a parish representative, we hope you will consider being one again! An information meeting is being planned on Feb. 3 at St. Pat’s. Check the website for full details. Hope to see you there.
10) Donate: We want to raise more money this time around and maybe shake things up on Ottawa’s radio airwaves. Please be generous with the Campaign.
VANCOUVER, B.C. – Two top leaders of the controversial polygamous sect in Bountiful, B.C., have been arrested and charged with practising polygamy. B.C. Attorney General Wally Oppal confirmed that Winston Blackmore and James Oler were arrested Wednesday. Oppal said Blackmore is alleged to be married to 20 women, while Oler is accused of committing polygamy by being married to two women. “This has been a very complex issue,” he told The Canadian Press. “It’s been with us for well over 20 years. The problem has always been the defence of religion has always been raised.”… (Source)
It was to be expected. The unwillingness of our society to draw lines on sexual morality has brought us to this point. When the homosexual “marriage” issue was in the fore half a dozen years ago critics said next it will be polygamy. They were right. Four successive attorney generals in BC had refused to lay charges against the leaders of the Mormon community at Bountiful because they rightly feared they would loose in court under the freedom of religion provision in the Charter of Rights. Mormon leader Blackmore is such a religious man that he can’t help adding more 15-year-old girls to his harem, I mean family, and having them collect government benefits as single moms even though he is a millionaire. While the provincial and federal parliaments are not yet ready to vote in polygamy our unelected judges probably are. The case will likely go all the way to the Supreme Court. We are quickly moving toward a society that accepts polymorphous sexual relationships of any type. Already our wonderful Supreme Court has legalized public orgies with its decision about a “swingers” nightclub in Montreal (Where the judges moved from their maliable “community standard of tolerance” criteria to “no harm or risk of harm” to the individuals or the proper functioning of society. Whatever!) And unbeknownst to most Canadians your government already gives some benefits to polygamous widows so long as the marriages occurred outside the country. It is an open secret that there are many Muslim men with multiple wives in Canada. The wives are listed as single-mothers (you pay them benefits) and when asked the children often refer to their dads as “uncles.” – Fr. Elijah.
And speaking of Muslim men, the good Cardinal of Lisbon has some frank words for Portuguese women….
Cardinal Jose da Cruz Policarpo, the Latin Rite Patriarch of Lisbon since 1998, has warned Catholic women not to marry Muslim men. “Be careful with love. Think twice before marrying a Muslim, think seriously because it brings loads of hassle– and even Allah can’t say where all that will end,” he said. The cardinal added, “You can only dialogue with someone who is willing to dialogue. With our Muslim brothers, for example, dialogue is very difficult.” (Source)
Although my wife and I are a relatively devout young Catholic couple, we generally like to associate ourselves with people from all walks of life. Whether they be religious, secular, or even anti-religious, we believe that we are called to live the Catholic faith and be an example to everyone. As part of this approach, we are not terribly concerned with engaging in secular events which once had a profoundly Christian influence. One such event – however innocuous – is our City’s annual Santa Claus parade. Because our children are young (Clarissa – 5 and Emma – 3), Lara and I like to take them to see the parade because it’s a lot of fun and we all enjoy it immensely. There is a tinge of sadness, of course, since the bishop in the red suit has been stripped of his mitre and staff, and instead holds a bottle of Coca Cola in one hand and a bag of trinkets in another. Nevertheless, although it has become sanitized from its Christian heritage and the public who attend it are, by and large, ambivalent – and even some rather hostile – to Saint Nicholas’ origins, it’s still a good time for the children, and that’s why we go. One day, perhaps, our culture will return Saint Nicholas to his rightful place in a Catholic culture. Until then, we must patiently endure the prostitution of his good name in secularism and consumerism.
Two Christmas’ ago, Clarissa, our older daughter, came down with a slight fever and we were unable to attend the Santa Claus parade. She was disappointed that she could not see Santa, but we promised her that next year we would be sure to go. As parents of small children will readily admit, the future is little consolation to children when they want something now, and this Christmas promise was really no different. Still, her disappointment quickly passed and was forgotten as Christmas approached.
As this past Christmas was approaching, my wife and I reminded ourselves that we could not miss the Santa Claus parade again, and we dutifully set aside the time to make good on last year’s loss. Sure enough, as early December approached we had forgotten about the parade until the day was upon us, and even then it was too late since we had only remembered after the parade was finished. Fortunately for us, we saw a clipping in the local paper reminding us of the Santa Claus parade just 20 minutes west of Ottawa in Kanata. My wife and I breathed a collective sigh of relief. The day of the parade came and the whole family set out early in order to find parking at the Shopping Mall. As any child knows by now, of course, Santa does not live and work at the North Pole. He works at the Malls on the weekends and weeknights during the Christmas season! Anyhow, we managed to find parking in the mall parking lot, and slowly started to make our way down to one of the nearby streets where Santa would be passing by.
As we shuffled along the side of the mall throughway, Lara and I happened to notice an elderly lady standing outside her car just a little further down the hill. Although it does not happen that often, sometimes I can just feel the Lord’s hand on a situation, and my “spidy sense” was telling me that this was one of those moments. As we approached her, I noticed that the woman looked very worried, and as we started to pass her by she asked us if we had a cellular phone. I replied that we did not, and asked her if something was wrong and whether we could help in any way. She said that she really needed a cellular phone to call home so someone could bring her second set of car keys. Apparently, she had locked her keys in the car. I was rather confused at her anxiety since she could have easily walked into the mall and called for assistance from a pay phone. So I crossed the road and as I approached her, she went on to explain that her two year old grandson was locked inside the car. Well, that would explain why she could not leave the car unattended. Sure enough, as I looked in, there was the little guy snuggly strapped into his car seat staring attentively at me. I first offered to look after the car while she went into the mall or offered to go into the mall myself and make the call for her. She hesitated somewhat but now wondered openly whether anyone was even at home. She had a spare house key available to her and could get inside if she could just get home. Sensing the hint, I offered to give her a lift. She nodded agreeably, motioning to me that she only lived about four blocks away. Lara and the children happily agreed to watch over the little boy in the car while we were away.
As we settled in for the short drive, we started to make small chat about the weather and the Christmas season. After the pleasantries were over, Daphne happened to notice the rosary hanging from the rear view mirror and how pretty it was. As I glanced at the rosary from the corner of my eye, I wondered whether she had any religious background. As my thoughts were reflecting on how I should further the conversation on to the Christian faith, she thanked me for my generosity and that the “Lord would surely bless me”. Here was my cue. As I formulated a smooth and seamless introduction in my mind, Daphne interrupted. “I am a believer as well”. “Is that so”, I said. My mind focused. What next? How should I move? The direct approach or the backdoor plan? What was she? Where was she coming from – Fundamentalist, Methodist, Lutheran, Catholic? If she was not Catholic, I needed more information in order to concentrate my approach in engaging her.
Almost providentially, she then offered it. “I’m Anglican”, she volunteered. And then she went on to relate to me some of the events in her life. I listened intently to her story. “I never knew my father, and my mother died when I was very young. I was very lonely and I missed my mother terribly so I asked the Blessed Mother to by my mother.” As she said these words, she pulled out a picture of the Blessed Mother which she always kept with her. In this moment, I knew that this little encounter was anything but coincidental, and I wondered whether our little rendez-vous was more for my benefit than it was for hers. As I sat there listening to her story, I reflected on my vocation as a Catholic Apologist and those I confront with the Catholic faith. Here I was ready to do the same with this elderly grandmother, when she unknowingly reminded me that she too was a spiritual daughter of the Blessed Mother, and that my approach to her should be one of a brother to a sister and not as a “Catholic” to a “Protestant”. As my eyes had fallen on the picture of the Blessed Mother, it became very apparent to me that although our separated brethren do not have the fullness of truth, some of them have indeed recognized a wonderful truth of the Christian faith – the identity of their Spiritual Mother. Of course, I knew this in an abstract way. I knew that the Orthodox and other Eastern Christians honoured Our Lady. I even knew that some “High Church” Anglicans did as well. But knowing something in your head is quite different than actually experiencing an encounter with a Protestant who had a “personal relationship with the Mother of Jesus”. It was a refreshing and wonderful experience, to say the least.
As I listened to her humbly recount how she loved the Blessed Mother and how Mother Mary had helped her throughout her life, I experienced a profound love and respect for this woman and her Anglican faith. To my surprise, I found myself closer to her in those few minutes than I have been to some of my childhood friends. And I asked myself: is this really a surprise? When two persons share the same mother, how can that not bring them closer together? And because Daphne recognized the Blessed Mother for who she really was, she was able to recognize our Brother and Lord more fully and authentically than if she had no spiritual mother at all. When therefore we would speak of “the Lord” in our conversation, it had a profoundly different meaning for both of us. We would know, intimately, “which” Jesus we were talking about: The Son of Mary, His Mother and Ours. My experience with this Anglican grandmother has only confirmed my belief that Christian unity comes through Mary. When she is loved and honoured the way she should be by all Christians, there will be considerably less in-fighting about what the “Gospel” is, and we can then focus on energies on evangelizing the world for Christ. Christian disunity is a sacrilege, and Our Mother is crying. Who will wipe away her tears?
The Catholic Legate
February 12, 2003
This article originally appeared in the Summer ’02 issue of Bread of Life magazine.