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Friday, January 16, 2015

Vulnerability Is Funny (Sometimes)

Marti Schodt, of HelloGiggles.com, on falling in love: "I have to be vulnerable. I have to open myself up to judgment and rejection. I have to talk about my past and my pains and hope that he'll still want to hold my hand after he finds out that I drool rivers in my sleep and cackle like a witch sucking helium." Bahahaha!

Dear God...

May I please have the gifts of chastity, contentment, a job, and if it's not too much to ask...

The world champion San Antonio Spurs on national TV?

Amen.

Hillary Clinton Will Never Be The President

Got your attention, didn't I? But it's true. It's very simple: If you have some liability, some weakness, you need something powerful to cancel it out. You need goodwill, or humor, or exceptional intelligence. Hillary has at least 2 weaknesses: Her husband President Clinton, and her own unpleasant disposition, magnified by her impressive talent for pathological dishonesty and evasion. In short, people don't like her. People vote for people they like. We might say that the voting public has no good reason to like or trust someone, but if they do, they do. The American people are capable of overlooking a lot if they like you. Bill Clinton committed a felony while in office; did it matter? Nope. The people generally acted like it was the Republicans' fault that we even heard about it.

Reagan could have easily gotten impeached for Iran-Contra; doesn't matter. We liked him.

George W. Bush flat-out lied to us about their use of waterboarding; it won't matter. He'll be more fondly remembered than Clinton. Likability.

I recall in 2008, Hillary had a mildly unexpected primary win in Nevada, I think. I watched her speech. Everybody who wins has a line that touts the growing base of their appeal. They do it to energize supporters, and convince the differently committed that the train is leaving, so to speak. Hillary said something like, "And our coalition includes Republicans who've seen the light." I've never had such a negative reaction to a line, ever. It was tone-deaf. Here she was, trying to suggest that she's going to win, but essentially calling voters she'll need idiots for not supporting her earlier. She acts like she is a gift to the American people, and not the other way around.

I understand that all politicians have huge egos. It comes with the game. But you've got to be able to feign humility believably. She can't. At all. You can't win like that.

Let me say that the people do not resign themselves to their presidents, ordinarily. There has to be a large segment of people who wants to vote for someone. Tell me, which groups of people would find Hillary Clinton compelling that would not also find any other Democrat compelling? I don't see her overcoming the visceral dislike of Republicans. I don't see how she can own Obama's record without being torpedoed by it. (Benghazi, anyone?) She doesn't talk like a president; rooms don't crackle when she enters; she has power, but it's inertia, not the power of individuality.

I said Obama would be president a solid 2 years before the election. You can feel presidents coming, if you pay attention. It's a little more Student Council-ish than we'd like, but it's reality. The game of politics is distinct from the work of governing. Hillary doesn't have "it," and she never really did. Let's be real: if the "front-runner" gets beat by a freshman senator with no real accomplishments whatsoever, how fresh will she seem this time?

Thursday, January 15, 2015

I'm Not Anti-Gay, I'm Anti-Sin

Some people object to the association of homosexuality and sin, but by and large, I think they know they are fighting against their own consciences, and the law of God. This is why the activism--when the extremely generous estimates tell us that 1 out of 100 people experiences sexual attraction to people of the same sex--is so intense. When Satan has a stronghold, it's a stronghold.

I can't recall a time when such a small percentage of people was able to shift public opinion in this way. It's certainly odd. But our sexuality is powerful. Sins against it, whether by us, or others, do a lot of damage. The inverse of the total self-gift of sexual complementarity in marriage is an endless array of variations on the theme of selfishness.

I've got to wonder how many "fallen-away" Catholics and other once-practicing Christians are "allies" of the homosexuality movement because of shame for their own sins? Or even misplaced shame, because someone abused them. Someone tries to convince you of a "new normal" because holiness and goodness was so far away, or a facade, like The Brady Bunch.

We've got to simply pray and lament all that, more than anything. I'm going to remember that if someone attacks me, or makes absurd comparisons (like I'm Fred Phelps) that it could be the Holy Spirit wounding their conscience. The people trying hardest to convince you that they are happy are the most unhappy.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

He Did The Best He Could

Big-time hero. The UN--predictably--took away Dallaire's peacekeepers at the crucial moments of what would become the Rwandan genocide. The United States recalled its diplomatic personnel, and as I recall, 800 US Marines, at the same time. No one has ever advocated an attack on the Tutsi government. But it seems to me that if the Marines had been placed under Dallaire's command with an expanded mandate to intercept the weapons, the whole catastrophe might have been averted.

Rest In Peace, Romeo Dallaire.