Omnes Sancti et Sanctæ Coreæ, orate pro nobis.

Now Blogging Afresh at Ad Orientem 西儒 - The Western Confucian

Monday, July 25, 2005

Prayer Request
This will be the last post for a while. I hope to be without Internet access for at least a month.

We're leaving on Wednesday for St. Louis, so that our daughter Joy can receive some medical treatment unavailable to her in Korea. Our doctor, providentially, is a Korean-American who is by all accounts the best at what he does and has even been called "God's gift to children."

Joy is scheduled to meet him on August 1st and if all goes according to plan, receive the procedure the next day. If you feel so inclined, please keep Joy in your prayers, especially on August 2nd.

At our last mass at our parish last night, our priest gave us copies of the Miraculous Medal. Today, I discovered that the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal is providentially located in nearby Perryville, Missouri. More about this devotion can be learned at the Association of the Miraculous Medal.

O Mary conceived without sin,
pray for us who have recourse to thee.

Please also consider offering this litany for Joy:
Today, we remember...

Saint James the Greater
The Killing of Jean Charles de Menezes
As more details emerge, this story becomes more disturbing. The Brazilian electrician was held down by plain-clothes police officers and shot five times in the head.

Here's an eye-witness account, from Final minutes of the innocent man mistaken for a terrorist, linked to today by TCR News Musings:
    By far the most controversial claim comes from a number of witnesses who have cast doubt on police statements that they shouted a warning or identified themselves to the suspect before opening fire.

    Lee Ruston, 32, who was on the platform, said that he did not hear any of the three shout “police” or anything like it. Mr Ruston, a construction company director, said that he saw two of the officers put on their blue baseball caps marked “police” but that the frightened electrician could not have seen that happen because he had his back to the officers and was running with his head down.

    Mr Ruston remembers one of the Scotland Yard team screaming into a radio as they were running. Mr Ruston thought the man that they were chasing “looked Asian” as he tumbled on to a waiting Northern Line train.

    Less than a minute later Mr Menezes was pinned to the floor of the carriage by two men while a third officer fired five shots into the base of his skull.

    Again, Mr Ruston says that no verbal warning was given.
[image from Man Shot by London Police Had No Terror Ties]
An Iraqi Sandstorm and a Korean Abu Ghraib
The GI Korean Blog today links to some amazing photos of a Sandstrom in Iraq, and offers his own personal experience in a shumali.

He also posts disturbing photos of the ROK Army abusing its own: Now This Is Digusting.
Mobocracy in South Korea
'Populism' Looms Over Politics [via Connect Korea]
A Royal Funeral
The nine-day period of mourning is over: Son of Joseon's last crown prince is laid to rest.

Here are some photos:

From the Digital Chosunilbo (English Edition):

From INSIDE Joong Ang Daily:

From The Korea Times:

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Pastoral Letter on Embryonic Stem Cell Research
Bishop Francis Xavier Ahn Myong-ok, president of the Korean Bishops’ Commission for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Commission for Bio-Ethics:
    The embryo is life. We have all been embryos. We have no right to meddle with human life....

    [Dr. Hwang's] research... is a manipulation of human life, it offends the dignity of the human person by treating the embryo as an object of research and experiment.
-- from ASIA/SOUTH KOREA - “We must offer hope to the world and promote a culture of life”: Bishops issue pastoral letter on bio-ethics and stem cell research
The Consequence of Fear
From British police kill Brazilian in bomb probe blunder:
    Anti-terrorism expert Robert Ayers of the Royal Institute of International Affairs said police have "demonstrated that they are operating on the premise right now that if they suspect that someone is a bomber, and that the public is going to be endangered by him, they have shoot-to-kill orders."

    Massoud Shadjareh of the Islamic Human Rights Commission said the killing was a direct consequence of British police officers being sent to Israel to receive training on how to prevent suicide bombings.

    "To give license to people to shoot to kill just like that, on the basis of suspicion, is very frightening," Azzam Tamimi of the Muslim Association of Britain said.

    But former London police chief John Stevens defended the tactics.

    "I sent teams to Israel and other countries hit by suicide bombers where we learned a terrible truth," he wrote in the News of the World.

    "There is only one sure way to stop a suicide bomber determined to fulfil his mission -- destroy his brain instantly, utterly. That means shooting him with devastating power in the head, killing him immediately."
Jean Charles de Menezes, Requiescat in Pace.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Embryonic Stem Cell Research
Here's a news flash from Agenzia Fides:
    ASIA/SOUTH KOREA - "We must offer hope to the world and promote a culture of life": Bishops issue pastoral letter on bio-ethics and stem cell research
There's no story yet, just a headline. I'll be sure to post it when it comes out.

Neither is the letter yet posted on the CBCK English Website, but this is there: * 66% of Catholic Netizens Oppose Embryonic Stem Cell Research.
Orestes Brownson on Pontifications
The Pontificator, a 21st Century convert like myself, has been posting extensive pieces by Orestes Brownson, the great 19th Century convert. Here are links to two:The quotes come from the Orestes Brownson Society.
Hanoi Jane's Husband Pyeongyang Ted
Influential Americans Plan Visits to North Korea [via the GI Korea Blog]
From Father Huneycutt, On Being Judgmental:
    There have always been people without judgment but this is the first era in which being nonjudgmental is considered good -- though how anything can be considered good if you are nonjudgmental is another puzzle.
-- Thomas Sowell

[via A conservative blog for peace]
I'm a Conservative-Libertarian
At least according to my results from the World's Smallest Political Quiz:
[via A conservative blog for peace]
Aztec Child Sacrifice
One of many reasons why the evangelization of the New World was a good thing: Mexican Archeologists Find Rare Sacrifice
Classic Jazz -- "Magnificently Old Culture"
Murray N. Rothbard, in 1973: Jazz Needs a Melody!

This blogger's journey into Jazz began with the Free Jazz of Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane. I'm now hooked on the tradionalist Dixieland of the master George Lewis.
Korea's New Five-Day Work Week
It's not that popular. Many are longing for a return to the six-day work week. Their complaints are legitimate: Short work week generating anxiety among Koreans unused to too much leisure time.
Sexual Slavery and Islam
This is very a disturbing inside view, written by a Muslim convert for a Muslim publication: Traditionalist View on Sex Slaves.

Here's an excerpt:
    Years ago, when I first learned about Islam, one point that bothered me was that Islam appears to tolerate slavery, at least according to traditional opinion. My Muslim friends responded to my concern with the usual traditional apologetic logic: They said, Islam tolerated slavery only to avoid a social and economic collapse and therefore made slavery vanish not suddenly but slowly over time. When I heard this the first time, I assumed slavery disappeared in the course of a few generations. Several years after I became Muslim I was shocked when I learned that in fact, slavery lasted on for more than a thousand years, until the nineteenth century, when international agreements between Muslim and Western countries banned slavery, and it clearly seems the Western countries were the driving force behind this move.

    But there was something even more shocking: According to traditional schools of thought, not only was slavery permitted, but they also approved that every male master had the right to force any of his female slaves to have sex with him. This fact not only shatters any illusion one might have about the dignity a slave enjoyed according to traditional schools, it also smashes any hope to find a social or economical rationale for it. To me, this became a prime example for the necessity to reconsider the traditional rulings. I thought that any reasonable person would agree that the case of slavery and sex with slaves showed clearly that the traditional schools could not be relevant for us without major revision. Unfortunately, I had to learn that traditionalists do not agree.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Industrialization and the Family
    As we close the Second Christian Millennium, this natural family is disappearing as a culturally significant presence in most of the Western world. Declining rates of first marriage, soaring divorce, low levels of births within marriages, mounting illegitimacy, rampant promiscuity, cohabitation, and abortion, and the sexualization of popular culture: These developments have been especially pronounced in the very nations where the triumph of industry has been most complete.
- Allan C. Carlson, in Toward a Family-Centered Economy
Today, we remember...

Saint Mary Magdalen
Apostle to the Apostles
Alberta's Premier Speaks
    It's a sad day for the majority of Albertans who believe in the traditional definition of marriage.
- from Alberta's Klein shows frustration over first marriage licences issued to gays
Looks Cool
From Catholic News Service:

    Pope Benedict XVI, donning a white cap and
    quilted jacket, stops to talk with visitors
    at Mont Blanc July 20. The pope is spending
    his vacation in the mountain region of
    northern Italy. (CNS/L'Osservatore Romano)
Dress Modestly, Even Though...
"It's Hot Out There!" says a blogger who lives in Winnepeg.

Here in Pohang, it's much, much hotter, but I still try to follow his advice and avoid wearing shorts in public. I have given up on ties this summer, though.

[link via Hallowed Ground]
American Julia Mullock...
is the wife of the recently departyed Yi Gu, the last crown prince of the Chosun Dynasty: 'Last Princess' Denied Final Meeting With Ex-Husband.

Here is part of her sad story, from [Opinion] "Were You Happy?":
    However, she found herself sterile, which was the greatest obstacle to her life in such a country as Korea that treats sterile women as sinners. The fact that she was the wife of the prince made such a thing much more difficult. The royal family that saw her in skewed eyes due to her status as foreigner pushed for a divorce, which finally led to their divorce in 1982. After this, the former wife of the eldest grandson of the Emperor of the Joseon Dynasty has struggled with loneliness and poverty without any help.
How to Stop Suicide Terrorism
Congressman Ron Paul, MD, Republican from Texas, seems to be the only politician who regularly makes any sense. I believe it was he who called for a repeal of the 17th amendment.

Here's what Dr. Paul has to say about stopping Suicide Terrorism:
    The best news is that if stopping suicide terrorism is a goal we seek, a solution is available to us. Cease the occupation of foreign lands and the suicide missions will cease. Between 1982 and 1986, there were 41 suicide terrorist attacks in Lebanon. Once the U.S., the French, and Israel withdrew their forces from Lebanon, there were no more attacks. The reason the attacks stop, according to Pape, is that the Osama bin Ladens of the world no longer can inspire potential suicide terrorists despite their continued fanatical religious beliefs.
Ron Paul in 2008!
End of Patriarchy in Confucian Korea
Sad news greets lovers of tradition and order today in Korea: Supreme Court Rules Against Male-Centered Family System.
Immaculate Conception Church in Shanghai
Saint Andrew Kim Taegon, the patron of this blog, was ordained there on August 17, 1845: Shanghai church draws Korean pilgrims.
In India's Catholic Enclave
Crosses desecrated in Goa
A "Distortion of God's Plan for the Family"
Vatican Paper Condemns Canada Gay Marriage
No Religious Test
Article VI, section 3 of the The Constitution of the United States of America clearly states that "no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States."

We'll see if the Secular Left remembers that: Conservative Catholics on Watch for Questions on Nominee's Faith.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Islamic Europe
Some folks are predicting that that will be a reality before the end of the century, in A Crescent Over Europe?, linked to today by Serge of A conservative blog for peace, who observes that "Europeans contracepting and aborting themselves [is] not only a sin but shortsighted."
A Cistercian-Trappist Monastery
Open Book's Amy Welborn links to an article, California monastery offers respite from busy world, about a trip to the beautiful Abbey of New Clairvaux, which I have visited a couple of times.
Re-evangelizing Mexico
Mass in Mexico takes African twist
A "Pro-Catholic" Film
Pat Buchanan does a film review: Cinderella Man: A Film For Us.
Niger famine crisis 'at 11th hour'

Κύριε, ελέησον
Lord, have mercy.

[link via TCR News Focus]
From this article, I learned that Supreme Court nominee Roberts is from Buffalo, NY: Nominee would be fourth Catholic justice on current court.

That's one more reason to be optimistic about his nomination. Here's another: Religious leaders call Roberts nomination to Supreme Court 'an answer to prayer'.
From Seattle Catholic today comes a link to this post about a Belgian church that has been "transformed into exhibition stands for the works of modern art from an art collective": The Devil and all his works.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Batista was Black!
Learn this, and other surprising facts about pre-Castro Cuba in The Real Fidel: A Discussion With Humberto Fontova [via A conservative blog for peace].
A Fourth Catholic on the Supreme Court?
Mr. President, you chose well. May God preserve Judge John G. Roberts. May Saint John of Capistrano, patron of judges, pray for him.

We'll soon get a taste of the Secular Left at its worst: Fidelis on Roberts Nomination: 'Hearings Are Ripe For Anti-Religious Bigotry'.
"Finding My Religion"
SF Gate has an interesting on-going column with the above title.

Here are two Catholic tales, the first of a revert, the second a convert:More can be found at the Finding My Religion Archive.
"The Backstoke of the West"
That's how the title of latest Star Wars* installment was rendered on a pirated DVD made in China, reported on by a fellow in Beirut in a post, Backstroke of the West, which was in turn picked up by Lida of Veritas. Quid est veritas? in San Francisco.

The "English subtitles are a direct translation of the Chinese translation of the original English script." Here is an example:
"Jedi Council" was perhaps translated into the Chinese as "長老會" (elders' meeting), and then translated back as "Presybterian Church."

I lot of these expressions look like the papers I get from students who use translation software.

*I haven't seen it and probably never will.
Orestes Brownson on the Incarnation
The Pontificator today posts this excellent piece by the "American Newman": "The church grows out of the Incarnation, and is inseparable from it".
The Liturgy
Jeff Culbreath dissects a disturbing answer to this question: WHAT IS LITURGY?

A must-read.
"American Hiroshima"
Cor ad cor loquitur's Dave Armstrong links to this article, which he describes as both "perhaps the most frightening thing [he's] ever read" and "[o]ne [r]eason to [f]ight [t]errorists in Iraq and [e]lsewhere":Let me say that I agree with Mr. Armstrong on the former but strongly disagree on the latter, if only about the "Iraq" part.

Here's what we face, according to the article:
    According to captured al-Qaida leaders and documents, the plan is called the "American Hiroshima" and involves the multiple detonation of nuclear weapons already smuggled into the U.S. over the Mexican border with the help of the MS-13 street gang and other organized crime groups.
Mr. Armstrong is right that this is extremely frightening, but I cannot see how Mr. Bush's War will in any way prevent it; rather, the "pre-emptive" war will more likely only precipitate an American Hisoshima.

Are these terrorists even in Iraq or even Iraqis abroad? No. Are terrorists aiming at the United States because of our freedoms, as our leaders assert? No. They are after us because of our empire, which is doing us no good anyway. It's high time to get rid of it.

Wake up, Americans. Wake up, Catholic neoconservatives. Wake up, even though it is already probably too late.
Property Under Threat in South Korea: The Spectre of Land Reform Looming
South Korea's "Participatory Government" recently released these statistics, aimed at causing alarm:
    [T]he top 1 percent of the population own 51.5 percent of privately-owned land, and only 28.7 percent of the people own any land at all, while 71.3 percent or 35 million are landless.
Knowing well that statistics can be manipulated to prove anything, South Korea's top consevative daily did some analysis in an article entitled The Truth About the Land-Owning Classes, which included this:
    The dumbfounding fact is that the 70 percent despondent landless include newborn infants. The government, it turns out, prepared the land ownership statistics by individual, not by household, which would have been the sensible way since home and land ownership is mostly recorded in the name of a householder. To ignore that principle is tantamount to the farcical act of telling young children living at home that they are serfs.

    The average size of our households is 3.1 persons. That 28.7 percent of the population own land, therefore, means that about 70 percent of the population belong to the land-owning classes. That is the exact opposite of what the government wants us to believe.
Here's another article on this theme: [EDITORIAL]Public land ownership.
A Royal Passing
Crown Prince Yi Gi passed away last Saturday in Tokyo:His story is quite sad.
The Mother of God in Art
Today's CathNews email provided a link to a great site that I was aware of but will present here to readers to whom it might be new: World's Great Madonnas. The site includes a Found Madonna Image of the Week Archive. The Korean image of our Lady above, a detail from Glory to God by artist Ki-Chang Kim, can be found on the main page with a helpful description.
The Day of Rest
Here are two from Seattle Catholic on Sunday:Secular pro-labor types (I'm a religious pro-labor type) would be wise to thank the God of Israel for introducing the idea of a day of rest to humanity. Had paganism triumphed, we might well be working seven days a week.
Susan Torres
She is being kept on life support for the sake of her baby: 'Miracle baby' could be delivered any day.

It costs $1500 a day to keep her on life support. Here's how we can help: Susan M. Torres Fund.
De-Latinization of Eastern Catholicism
This is good news: Catechism will help Ukrainian Catholics recover identity, bishop says.

I am thouroughly Western and cannot see myself as a member of anything but the Latin Rite, but I appreciate the Eastern Rites and recognize their indispensibility in the Universal Church.

This description of the current state of affairs in Eastern Catholicism comes from The Other Catholics: A Short Guide to the Eastern Catholic Churches, linked to by Open Book and picked up by A conservative blog for peace:
    Today, many Orthodox are fearful of losing their distinct traditions in a world dominated by the Latin Church. Making matters worse, some of the Eastern Catholic Churches have adopted Latin customs and haven't been very good examples of how union with Rome should work. This is tragic, since the traditions of these Churches are themselves apostolic and help preserve the catholicity of the Church with their own unique development of the gospel message. For example, unlike a good Latin parish, in a traditional Eastern Catholic parish you won’t find musical instruments, statues, rosaries, or stations of the cross. Indeed, the priest may well have a wife and children, and the church might be without pews or kneelers. In some circumstances, even the Bible might have a larger canon and include Third and Fourth Maccabees. Unity does not mean uniformity.
Here's one tantalizing tidbit: the article from which the above quote comes states that the Patriarchal Chaldean Catholic Church (of present-day Iraq) might have been the first to send Catholic missionaries to this peninsula:
    The Church was a very active missionary force and expanded into India, Tibet, China, Mongolia, and perhaps even Korea and the Philippines.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Soloviev and O'Connor
Today, I finished The Russian Church And The Papacy by Vladimir Soloviev. This excellent but mistitled book, an abridgement of the author's Russia and the universal church (out-of-print), really has little to say about the Russian Church, except that it should be under the Pope. The book offers an astonishingly thourough defense of the Papacy, using scripture, tradition, history, and common sense to illustrate why the Pope is and always has been essential to the unity and orthodoxy of the Christian Faith.

I've given this book a permanent link on my sidebar under "Recommended Books on Catholicism," the first time I have added a book to that category since this blog was created. The book is that good. I'd highly recommend it to anyone who seeks an answer to the question of why the Catholic Church has and needs a Pope.

Hans Urs von Balthasar ranked Soloviev second only to Thomas Aquinas as "the greatest artist of order and organization in the history of thought." I'd really like to get my hands on a copy of Soloviev's unabridged tome.

Now, I begin The Habit of Being : Letters of Flannery O'Connor. "The Hillbilly Thomist" is perhaps my favorite American writer. One of these letters contains the author's famous quip about the Eucharist: "Well, if it's a symbol, to hell with it."

Fans of Miss O'Connor's work might like this: If Flannery Had A Blog...
Why My Sidebar Slipped Down to the Bottom of the Page
The TrueFresco Referrer Feed Service I use picked up a hit from a link that for whatever reason does not fit into the width of the sidebar.

This link should disappear within 24 hours and the problem should be resolved. If not, I'll have to get under the hood and fix it.

UPDATE: This is, of course, not a problem on my iMac at home.

UPDATE 2: The problem can also be solved by adding the "www" to the URL:
In Why My Generation Loved Western Movies, author Gary North identifies the four grand themes of the genre: "cowardice vs. honor, the defense of private property (land), law enforcement, [and] the moral limits of vengeance."

Monday, July 18, 2005

Can I Live?
It is so rare that American pop culture produces anything morally uplifting, let alone unobjectionable, that when it happens it begs to be reported on.
I've read about this song in the blogosphere, but just yesterday heard it for the first time. Apparently, the very moving autobiographical pro-life song by a singer named Nick Cannon is sweeping the nation. JIMMY AKIN.ORG has linked to an article, Popular Singer's Music Video Brings Abortion Into Limelight, which provides the lyrics of the song, copied below, and this site where it can be heard online:

Here are the lyrics:
    I'm Talking Ma

    I know the situation is personal, but it something that has to be told;

    as I was making this beat you was all I could think about; you heard my voice

    Yeah Just think Just Think, what if you could Just… Just blink your self away…

    Just Just wait just pause for a second. Let me plead my case.

    Its the late 70's Huh

    You seventeen huh.

    And having me that will ruin everything huh; it’s a lot of angels waiting for their wings you see me in your sleep, so you can't kill your dreams. 300 dollars that's the price of living, what?

    Mommy, I don't like this clinic; hopefully you'll make the right decision and don't go though with the Knife Decision; but it hard to make the right move when you in high school
    how you have to work all day and take night school

    hopping off da bus when the rain is pouring; what you want morning sickness or the sickness of mourning?

    I'll Always Be a part of you
    Trust Your Soul Know His Heart Is True
    If I Could Talk I Would Say To You
    CAN I LIVE …. CAN I LIVE? (Repeat)

    I'm a child of the King ain't no need to go fear me and I see the flowing tears so know that you hear me when I move in your womb that's me being scaring cause who knows where my future holds

    yo the truth be told you ain't told a soul yo; you ain't even showing I just 2 months old; though your clothes try to hide me, deny me, went up 3 sizes
    your pride got you lying saying ain't nothing but a migraine; it ain't surprising you not trying to be in WIC food lines

    Your friends look at you funny but look at you mommy; that's a life inside you, look at your tummy what is becoming ma; I am Oprah bound you can tell he's a star from the Ultrasound;
    Our Spirits Connected Doors Open Now Nothing But Love And Respect Thanks For Holding Me Down She Let Me Live...

    I'll Always Be a part of you
    Trust Your Soul Know His Heart Is True
    If I Could Talk I Would Say To You
    CAN I LIVE …. CAN I LIVE? (Repeat)

    It's uplifting for real y'all I ain't passing no judgment; ain't making no decisions; I am just telling y'all my story — my love life. I love my mother for giving me life. We all need to appreciate life. A strong women that had to make a sacrifice. Thanks for listening. Thanks for listening. Mama thanks for listening.
In his song, Mr. Cannon gives a voice to the most voiceless members of our society. How many lives will this one song save? How many young scared girls, thrown to the wolves by the valueless society in which they were raised, will remember its chorus on their way to the "clinic" and choose to do the right thing?

[photo from Nick Cannon The Official Fan Club Website, where the video can be seen and the t-shirts ordered]
History and Ideology in South Korea
Here are some photos of yesterday's demonstration in Incheon, linked to by this article, Gen. MacArthur Statue Spawns Korea Protest:

I don't make out any of the anti-MacArthur protesters in the photos.

The women in the first photo, holding the American flags, are from the "Hwanghae Province Residents Association." Hwanghae Province is in North Korea, meaning that these women fled from the communists in the wake of the Korean War. They know from whence they speak.

The best quote from the article above comes from former South Korean U.N. Ambassador Park Keun: "Not even dogs forget their benefactors."

Be sure to check the GI Korea Blog, which will surely provide excellent analysis.
TCR's Cross
    If we criticize and reject Mr. Bush's war in no uncertain terms, or his economic premises, we lose many theological conservatives and stir up a bees nest of stinging opposition. If we affirm traditional Catholic doctrines, and traditional morals and teachings with respect to artificial contraception and the Natural law, we lose many theological liberals; if we affirm with thanksgiving the teachings of the Second Vatican Council, we lose many traditionalists.

    This is our cross.

    But with the conservatives we hold to the Credo of the Church in the same sense and meaning as the Church everywhere and always; and with the liberals we emphasize the spirit of the law and not only the letter, orthopraxis and not only an intellectual assent to the faith; and with the traditionalists we affirm traditional piety and devotions, the spirituality of the saints as well as the right to the "old" Mass everywhere---without prejudice to the normative reform of Vatican II and assent to the teachings of the living magisterium.
[from TCRNews Musings, Opinion, News Notes, Traditional Catholic Reflections and Reports,]

The reasons stated above make Traditional Catholic Reflections & Reports one of the most interesting, most provacative, most controversial, most thought-provoking, and, in this blogger's opinion, most Catholic sites on the Internet.

Although we don't always "think the same," we most definitely "think alike," to borrow the phrasing from this page of distinguished endorsements: What People are Saying About TCR.
On the Way to Jesus Christ
That's the title of the Holy Father's forthcoming book: In new book, Pope Benedict challenges idea of pop-culture Jesus.

In it, the Holy Father demolishes the false image of our Lord as someone who "demands nothing, never scolds, who accepts everyone and everything, who no longer does anything but affirm us: the perfect opposite of the Church, to the extent that she still dares to make demands and regulations."

Sovereign Hawaii
Given the Federal Government's history of managing the affairs of Indians, Native Hawaiians have every reason to agree with this woman and oppose the Akaka bill, however well-intentioned it might seem:

    Kelikina Kekumano of Waianae, Hawaii, stands in front of a anti-Akaka
    Bill sign on the hightway in Waianae, Hawai, Friday, July, 15, 2005.
    Kekumano was leaving for Washington, D.C. where she spends much of her
    time lobbying for Native Hawaiian rights. She and other native Hawaiians
    are objecting to the Akaka bill siting the loss of Hawaii as a sovereign
    nation and the classification of Hawaiians as native Indians.
[from Senate to Vote on Hawaiian Self-Rule Bill]

Here is a site that should be of interest to monarchists and those who agree that the 1893 overthrow of the constitutional government of the Hawaiian Kingdom by the United States was a despicable travesty: Hawaiian Kingdom Government.

And as an aside, here is an interesting history of the Hawaiian Reformed Catholic Church, which was in reality Anglican Protestant.
فتوى (Fatwa)
    Who has given anyone the right to kill others? It is a sin. Anyone who commits suicide will be sent to Hell... What happened in London can be seen as a sacrilege. It is a sin to take your life or the life of others....

    We equally condemn those who may have been behind the masterminding of these acts, those who incited these youths in order to further their own perverted ideology.
-Mufti Muhammad Gul Rehman Qadri, chairman of Britian's Sunni Council, quoted in Sunnis in Britain Condemn London Bombings

Edward Yong answers this question today: What do Indonesian and Korean Burglars have in common?

I'd never heard of this, but a student confirmed it.
Myeongdong Cathedral's Place in Korean Architectural History
    The first major church to be built in Korea was Myongdong Cathedral, which still stands at the center of the capital. Nowadays, shadowed by the skyscrapers around, it does not appear very imposing but well into the 1950s, this Gothic building was a major landmark in downtown Seoul. It was built in 1898, soon to be followed by a number of other churches large and small.

    Myongdong Cathedral is not simply and architectural monument. It was to become the site of dramatic events related to the special role that the Korean churches would play in the political life of the country. But that is another story…
[from [The Dawn of Modern Korea] (307) Bricks and Mortar]

Here are two photos, from then and now, taken from the cathedral's official website, †한국천주교 서울대교구 주교좌 명동교회:

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Happy Constitution Day!
In honor of this day, here is the complete text in English: Constitution Of The Republic Of Korea.
Mariology and Country Music
My friend Jason Choi of Musings of an orthodox Korean Catholic... links to this fascinating article: Jesus and Mama: The intercessor par excellence in country music.
Yesterday was the 60th anninversary of the world's first atomic explosion. Naming the site "Trinity" was correctly labeled as "blasphemous" by none other than Archbishop Fulton Sheen, according to Serge of A conservative blog for peace, linking to these two articles: Thousands Mark World's First Atomic Blast and Hiroshima Survivor Recalls Devastation.
Classical Music in Korea
Commie or not (and the jury is still out on that), he is one of my favorite composers: Concerts to Be Held to Remember Russian Composer Shostakovich.
Mac Under Attack (Again)
South Korean progressivists are again trying to get the statue of General Douglas A. MacArthur removed from Incheon, the site of his famous landing:The "Hwanghae Province Residents Association" and other conservatives are fighting to keep the statue.

The GI Korea Blog has a lot to say on this: If Mac Goes I Go.
I'm sure this news will be welcomed by ORTHODIXIE's Father Joseph David Huneycutt: Orthodoxy on the rise in the South.
A Royal Visit from Nepal

    Their Royal Highnesses the Crown Prince and
    the Crown Princess taking a tour of the historic
    Chandeokgung Palace in Seoul, Saturday.

[from Their Royal Highnesses visit major sites in Seoul]
"The Caucasian Actor Scene in Modern Korean Cinema"
The author of this article finds out that if you're white, you're only likely to be able "to play the role of the obligatory evil westerner":I'm reminded of an Italian actor named Bruno who had fifteen minutes of fame here in Korea several years ago as a television actor. He was fluent in Korean. His career was over once he questioned the inherent contradiction of the character he was playing who, despite being fluent in Korean, was unable to address the father of the girlfriend he was dating in honorifics and ate only bread.

The webpage of the Canadian Embassy in Korea used to say that Koreans tend to see foreigners only as a set of stereotypes. That's very evident from the media's portrayal of Westerners. It seems that every third music video has a scene of white or black guys trying to rape a Korean girl before the Korean male hero shows up to save the day.

[That said, driving back from Ulsan today, I stopped at a small convenience store to buy a bottle of soju and a group of ajummas (middle-aged Korean women) greeted me in the warmest way, and one of them told me that Koreans liked foreigners. I told her that I liked Koreans.]
Anti-Catholic Bias
I guess they don't agree with their slightly less clueless brethren that "there are Christians in the Catholic Church": U.S. Christian Adoption Agency Rejects Catholic Couples.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Free China
The Angry Twins today have an informative post with a photo of Madame Chiang Kai-shek & Discalced Carmelites.

What more could you ask for?
Today, we remember...

Saint Vladimir I of Kiev

We also remember the "band of forty Spanish and Portugese Jesuit missionaries martyred by the Huguenot pirate Jacques Sourie while en route to Brazil" on this date in 1570, among them:

Blessed Ignatius de Azevedo

Blessed Gregory Escrivano

Blessed Gundisalvus Enriquez

Blessed James Andrade

Blessed Joannicus of Saint John

Blessed John de Baeza

Blessed John de Zafra

Blessed John Fernandez

Blessed John of Mavorga

Blessed John of San Martin
God Save the Queen! Your Majesty, Save Marriage!
Queen Elizabeth II apparently has the authority to block the gay "marriage" bill in Cananda. Here is part of the text of David Mainse letter to Her Majesty, quoted from Activist wants Queen to block same-sex marriage
    Our beloved Queen Elizabeth II, I know that the refusal of the Governor General to give royal consent would precipitate a crisis. Millions have nowhere else to turn but you..

    Should you act in this, millions of us would surely become more fervent supporters of the monarchy than ever...

    Please help humanity everywhere to begin a reversal of this morally and socially destructive trend.
Mr. Mainse' site, Marriage Canada, has information on how to appeal to the Queen. The site also carries the full text of David Mainse' Letter to the Queen.

[link to article via The Shrine of the Holy Whapping]
"Why is this less newsworthy..."
"...than the London bombings?" asks Patrick Roach of Procrastination Central, linking to this article: Raids, Reprisals Kill 71 in Kenya.
The Holy Father and Bad Mass-Market Fiction
Jimmy Akin dissects this non-story in these two posts:Once again, the mainstream media is having a conniption fit over a non-issue involving the Catholic Church.
The Seamless Garment
    Serving human dignity begins with ensuring every person’s right to life from conception to natural death. That always means defending the disabled, the terminally ill and the unborn child. But our obligations go beyond that. The right to life implies other rights. It implies the right to adequate food, clothing and medical care, justice under the law and opportunities to earn a living. It also implies a right to adequate shelter; to a place each of us can call "home."
- Archbishop Chaput, quoted in Homelessness: Issue goes to the heart of living the Gospel [via The Curt Jester]
Discrediting Democracy, "the god that failed" as Professor Hans-Hermann Hoppe* called it, is one of my favorite topics. Two stories on the theme caught my today:

First, here's one point of view from a Korean (in English) on the so-called "Participatory Government" of President Roh: [LETTER TO THE EDITOR]Let the elite decide.

Second, while I don't agree with everyting author Zahari Varbanov says in this article, he makes some good points: The Democracy Trap: [Analysis] Today's most pressing problems call for an alternative to one of our most hallowed ideas.

* His book is available in Korean:
Cut-throat Capitalism in Communist China
Red China combines the worst of both worlds: Owners hide bodies and run after mine explosion.
John Paul the Poet
Sainthood and Poetry
A New Basilica
Santa Fe's great church is now a basilica: St. Francis Cathedral receives more prestigious name.

This was one of the many beautiful New Mexican churches we visited on our trip across the Southwest last year*. The story of the building of the St. Francis Cathedral is told in Willa Cather's semi-fictional Death Comes for the Archbishop. The cathedral's altar screen has beautiful icons of saints from the Americas, from Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton to Saint Rose of Lima.

* For an account of this trip, read our Impressions of the Southwest (you'll have to scroll down).

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Bastille Day
The inglorious day is almost over here in Korea, thank God. Serge offers us Something to think about on Bastille Day. In fact, he offers us many things to think about, including this:
    [I]n parts of France Bastille Day was a day of mourning because the godless revolutionaries massacred the local populations who were loyal to the king.
North Korea in the Coalition of the Willing?
The GI Korea Blog's latest post is a must-read:Speculating on the news that a top South Korean diplomat disclosed that what "North Korean leader Kim Jong-il really wants is for his secretive state to become an ally of the United States," the GI offers this:
    Could you imagine North Korea as a US ally? Maybe we can sign them up to join the Coalition of the Willing and they could run Abu Graib and Gitmo for us. The US could avoid the constant criticism it receives from operating those two installations. If the North Koreans ran them and reports of torture and executions arose people would just say that the North Koreans were just being themselves, no big deal. I think I am on to something here. Condi Rice are you listening?
    Darwin's theory of evolution is the last of the great 19th century mystery religions. As we speak, it is now following Freudianism and Marxism into the nether regions, and I am quite sure that Freud, Marx and Darwin are commiserating in the dark dungeon where discarded gods gather.
- Dr. David Berlinsky, quoted on TCRNews Musings, Opinion, News Notes, Traditional Catholic Reflections and Reports,
    Do I seem to be making a large claim in behalf of the Vicar of Christ? Does not every one who rejects the living voice of the Church virtually make the same claim for his sect and for himself? He disclaims infallibility, but he is confident that that he is in the right: that the Catholic interpretations of the Scriptures are erroneous, and his are certain. Churches that are fallible, it seems, never err, at least in their own esteem; and all the multiplication of their perpetual contradictions fail to bring them to a sense of their aberrations
- Cardinal Manning, quoted by Father Alvin Kimel, who asks of his blog, "Does Pontifications have a future?"

I hope it does, because I have finally gotten around to adding to my sidebar the blog of this convert from Anglicanism.

Father Kimel posted Cardinal Manning's quote in response to an ad hominem attack from a particularly obnoxious self-styled "Confessional Lutheran" blog (think "South Park Conservative" gets religion). This blog causes me to reconsider the generally positive opinion I have of the denomination I grew up in.

[link to post via A conservative blog for peace]

UPDATE: Here is the post from the "Confessional Lutherans" that I alluded to above: Sunday, July 10, 2005.

The blog, Here We Stand, has 11 members. "Josh S" (be sure to check out the sacriligious "icon" he made of himself), is the poster who leveled the ad hominem attacks against "ol' Ponty" and left this question in his post:
    On a related note, here's a 90% serious question for any papists who might read this: what's it take to not be "invincibly ignorant?" Seriously, I'd rather be told I'm going to rot in hell for my heresy than be told I'm ignorant.
I left a brief, but politely worded response that given the tone of the post and the blog, the blogger might consider being more concerned with pride than ignorance. My comments were deleted immediately. This explains why among the 100 comments left there are none by a "Papist."

[To add insult to injury, one of the bloggers goes as far as to impugn the reputation of Francisco Franco! ]

I learned an appreciation for the Liturgy from the same LCMS some of these guys attend. Reading their blog, I'm glad I got out when I did. Having to maintain the untenable position that the Holy Spirit was silent in the Church as a body for 1500 years until an infallible Augustinian monk came along might make me equally bitter, hostile, and defensive.

If these "Augsburg Evangelicals" are in anyway indicative of what the 19th Century reformers were like, they serve has a helpful reminder for Catholics of the great heresy that was the Protestant Reformation.
This is Revolting
Ryan McMaken of the Blog links to this story today:Mr. McMaken notes:
    Back in the much more civilized middle ages, at least two witnesses were required to see a person actually commit the crime for conviction of a capital offense. No such luck in the Land of the Free.
[link to blog post via A conservative blog for peace]
Today's Gospel Reading
    "Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.

    "Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for your selves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light."
- Mt XI: 28-29 (NAB)
Today, we remember...

Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha
Lily of the Mohawks

Prayer for the Canonization of Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha:
    O God who, among the many marvels of Your Grace in the New World, did cause to blossom on the banks of the Mohawk and of the St. Lawrence, the pure and tender Lily, Kateri Tekakwitha, grant we beseech You, the favor we beg through her intercession; that this Young Lover of Jesus and of His Cross may soon be counted among her Saints by Holy Mother Church, and that our hearts may be enkindled with a stronger desire to imitate her innocence and faith. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
Our Brave New Evil World
Very disturbing news from The New Eugenics, an article linked to by Seattle Catholic today:
    EACH YEAR IN AMERICA fewer and fewer disabled infants are born. The reason is eugenic abortion. Doctors and their patients use prenatal technology to screen unborn children for disabilities, then they use that information to abort a high percentage of them. Without much scrutiny or debate, a eugenics designed to weed out the disabled has become commonplace...
Adolf Hilter and his American protogée Margaret Sanger* would be very happy.

* For more, see the following:
Something to Look Forward To Forward to Which to Look
Pope to write first encyclical during vacation
Stem-cell Research
It can be ethical: Cardinal urges Senate to support umbilical cord blood stem-cell research.

We had the umbilical cord blood of both of our kids frozen.
Pat Buchanan asks...
Why Are They Killing Us?
Something Completely Different
Young Woman Tortured by Teenage Lesbians
    One thing cool about being Catholic is that I am free to believe in a literal six day creation or a God guided evolution. Or if another new and better scientific theory comes out I am also free to accept that too. I was a lot less free and more dogmatic when I was an atheist. Meaningless random evolution was pretty much all I was allowed or allowed myself to believe. As a Catholic I am free to believe in miracles and in certain Church approved apparitions, though I am also free to disbelieve those apparitions. As an atheist I was not free to believe in apparitions or miracles. Yet it is generally Catholic who are called dogmatists. Chesterton said that man is a creature who creates dogmas and that is certainly true since everybody holds to dogmas, they just vary on what are to be held as dogmas. Or they at least hold to the dogma that there are no dogmas.
- The Jester, from Freedom in the Church
Christian Terrorist?
    They have been so nice I would hate to break it to them that I really prefer Nietzsche to the Bible.
- Eric Rudolph, bomber of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, two abortion clinics and a gay nightclub, speaking of born-again Christians in a letter to his mother, quoted in THE CHRISTIANIST CONSPIRACY

Author Maggie Gallagher goes on to suggest that the "grand liberalist metanarrative portraying religion as an irrational, backward force for evil" is behind our view of Islam:
    Even Islamists, as many have pointed out, have far more in common with Marxist and other avant-garde ideologies than with traditional Islam. Random bombs that kill women and children on London buses do not represent a return to the Muslim past, but avant-gardism in a new context.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Photos of the Kids
These don't work on my Mac (an advertisement shows up), but seem to on a PC: Luxury Baby Photo Studio - 박조엘 ( 2005-07-13 17:31:38, 조회수 10 ).
Today, we remember...
two Latin American blesseds and a saint; a Puerto Rican, a Colombian, and a Chilean respectively:

Blessed Carlos Manuel Cecilio Rodriguez Santiago

Blessed Mariano de Jesus Euse Hoyos

Saint Terese of the Andes

As it is always profitable to learn about holy people from modern times, click on the links to learn their interesting stories.

It was my third week of a year-long stay in Chile when Santa Teresa de los Andes was canonized. It was still almost a decade before I was to become a Catholic, and I didn't quite know what to make of the national celebration the heralded the country's first saint. Everywhere one looked, the were Santa Teresa banners, Santa Teresa posters, Santa Teresa cards, Santa Teresa stamps, etc.

Looking back on the event, it was a beautiful synthesis of nationalism and religion, of the particular and the universal. Very Catholic, indeed!
This is good news: Glass of vodka snaps Massachusetts town's dry spell.

This is more serious news: Police sued over man's right to get drunk.

The man was arrested on private property and was himself causing no disturbance. The police just wanted to make an example of someone.

First, they came for the drunks...
Endless Terror
    If this Prodigal Nation does not cease its mindless interventions in quarrels and wars that are not America's concerns, our lot will be endless acts of terror until, one day, a weapon of mass destruction is detonated on American soil. What is it about global empire that is worth taking this risk?
- Patrick J. Buchanan, from TO HELL WITH EMPIRE, linked to today by TCRNews Musings, Opinion, News Notes, Traditional Catholic Reflections and Reports,
Plastic Surgery Disasters (Not the DKs' Album)
I find cosmetic surgery a bit grotesque. This story is truly grotesque: It reminded me of this unfortunate woman, familiar to those of us in Korea, who in pusuit of beauty injected her own face with homemade silicone over a period of several years:
Fascinating Thoughts of an American Sufi
Dappled Things' Father Tucker links to this article today:It's author, Stephen Schwartz, is an American convert to Sufi Islam. Sufism has long attracted many Traditionalists in the West, and Mr. Schwartz, noting "the new alliance of radical Islamists and the radical left," sees in Traditional Islam the answer to the problems of the Middle East and beyond. He looks to Saint Josemaría Escrivá for inspiration:
    Opus Dei is well known for its positive role in reforming the economy of Spain, late in the Franco era, when it acted to energize entrepreneurs as well as to promote transparency and accountability in the Iberian business environment. This modernization was predicated on defense, rather than destruction, of traditional and conservative Spanish Catholic religious culture. Escrivá incited his acolytes to ridicule leftists and secularists for their attachment to 19th century ideas, comparing belief in them to insistence on traveling by stagecoach. Similarly, Opus Dei has become associated with the improvement of Catholic university education, especially schooling in management, in Latin America as well as in Spain....

    I do not believe the transformation of the Muslim world in a democratic direction can be achieved through compulsory secularization. Opus Dei showed in Spain that a modern and prosperous society, which would become the seedbed of legitimacy and stability, could be constructed without surrendering the essential values of traditional and conservative religiosity. I believe that is what moderate Muslims seek today; it is perhaps no paradox that a useful example for participants in this effort should come from Spain, the West European country with the most authentic and resilient Muslim heritage. The rest of Europe learning from Spain is old news; but for those with influence in London, no less than Washington, Spanish spirituality, in its Islamic, Jewish, and Christian forms, as well as the cries of pain from Madrid last year, offer significant lessons.
Korean Protestantism
It appears that Lew Sang-tae has made some valid points in his book, Korean Churches Betray Jesus, as described in this article:The most valid criticism is one that can be leveled at Protestantism in general: the all-importance of the pastor. This is ironic, as most Protestants cringe at the idea of the Catholic priest as alter Christus. Our doctrine, however, only serves to de-emphasize the man and, focusing rather on his role, emphasize Christ our Lord.

Much of Mr. Lew's criticism, however, seems to be aimed at reshaping Korean Protestantism along modernist mainline American lines, and having it preach a gospel which, in the famous words of H. Richard Neibuhr, preaches that "A God without wrath brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment though the ministrations of a Christ without a cross."
Too Much English, not Enough Korean, in Korean Schools

I find much to agree with in this statement by Ross King, associate professor of Korean Language and Literature at the University of British Columbia, quoted in Korea Stingy in Globalizing Language:
    A Canadian professor Tuesday called for more national investment in the Korean language and in Korean studies programs to foster Korean specialists, warning against an excessive boom for English learning here.
One cannot learn a second language effectively without first being proficient in one's mother tongue.
The parish I attend for daily morning mass is near a train station, and neighborhoods near train stations in Korea tend to be full of vice. At 6:00 AM, I can often see prostitutes out and about as I go to and from mass.

Here's some food for thought on the subject: Prostitution is modern slavery says Vatican & Vatican: Punish Clients of Prostitution.
China's Miners
A staggering 20,000 miners die each year in Chinese mining accidents. Yesterday, more were added to thjis grisly list: Mine explosion kills 65

Saint Leonard of Noblac, Patron of Coal Miners, pray for them.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Today, we remember...

Saint Veronica

The scenes with this saint are some of the most moving in The Passion of the Christ (2004).

Here's an image from expressions: the passion movie:

Lessons from the 19th Century Kulturkampf
There is much to be learned for today's "Culture War" in this article: All Borrowed Armor Chokes Us.

The article ends with these words from Louis Veuillot warning Catholics to be wary of political alliances both Left and Right:
    The right tactic for us is to be visibly and always what we are, nothing more, nothing less. We defend a citadel which cannot be taken except when the garrison itself brings in the enemy. Combatting with our own arms, we only receive minor wounds. All borrowed armor troubles us and often chokes us.
Saint John Paul?
Seattle Catholic links to this article today:The headline is quite misleading. First of all, beatification, not canonization is discussed. Secondly, the churchmen quoted in the article use words like "hope" and "possible," but say nothing about anything being "set."
Trotskyite Icepick
This story caught my eye: Icepick Used to Kill Trotsky Resurfaces.

One of the strangest tourist experiences one can have in Mexico City is a visit to the Museo-Casa León Trotsky:
I was impressed by the sinister ployglot's book collection: there were volumes in Russian, Spanish, French, English, German, and even Chinese!

Here's a review of the museum, in English: THE LEON TROTSKY MUSEUM - MURDER AND MARXISM IN MEXICO CITY.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Today, we remember...

Saint Benedict
Founder of Western Monasticism
Patron of Europe

With jubilation of the voice, O chant ye of our Father Benedict: The mouth of the righteous shall meditate wisdom. For wisdom hath built up a throne for herself in the bosom of the righteous man. And his tongue shall speak of judgment, seeing the Logos-teaching Pneumatos bedeweth the hidden places of his heart; for the law of his God is in his heart.

(Ps 36:33,34, trope "In jubilo" from the complete Old Sarum Rite Missal)

A Prayer to Saint Benedict:
    Glorious Saint Benedict, sublime model of virtue, pure vessel of God's grace! Behold me humbly kneeling at your feet. I implore you in your loving kindness to pray for me before the throne of God. To you I have recourse in the dangers that daily surround me. Shield me against my selfishness and my indifference to God and to my neighbor. Inspire me to imitate you in all things. May your blessing be with me always, so that I may see and serve Christ in others and owrk for His kingdom.

    Graciously obtain for me from God those favors and graces which I need so much in the trials, miseries and afflictions of life. Your heart was always full of love, compassion and mercy toward those who were afflicted or troubled in any way. You never dismissed without consolation and assistance anyone who had recourse to you. I therefore invoke your powerful intercession, confident in the hope that you will hear my prayers and obtain for me the special grace and favor I earnestly implore. {mention your petition}

    Help me, great Saint Benedict, to live and die as a faithful child of God, to run in the sweetness of His loving will, and to attain the eternal happiness of heaven. Amen.
Here is the saint's greatest work, entirely online: The Holy Rule of Saint Benedict.

Sancte Benedicte, ora pro nobis.

We also remember...

Saint Oliver Plunkett
Irish Archbishop and Martyr

Saint Oliver, pray for us.
Malaysian Dhimmitude
Here is an article on the plight of Malaysian dhimmis (non-Muslims in Muslim lands):Having lived in the country, I witnessed Malaysian Dhimmitude first hand. In fact, I made my living off it.

Dhimmitude in Malaysia has a racial element as well. Malays, the majority, are the beneficiaries of an Affirmative Action program that discriminates against Malaysian Chinese and Indians, more economically successful races. Malays are called Bumiputras, "sons of the soil." Malays are by default Muslims, as it is impossible to convert from Islam. [The only non-Muslim Bumiputras are the small various tribes of Orang Asli, "indigenous people." Most of these are from East Malaysia (the Malaysian-administered part of Borneo). Some of them are Christian. Orang Asli constitute less that 1% of the population.] It is possible for a Chinese of Indian Malaysian to achieve Bumiputra status by converting to Islam, as did the ethnically Chinese family of my forner boss, Datuk Wan Ismail Wan Mahmood, father-in-law of disgraced Deputy Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.

It is next to impossible for a non-Bumiputra to enter into a Malaysian college or university, such are the Affirmitive Action laws. Chinese and Indian Malayians have no other choice than to earn their degrees abroad. Meeting this educational need, "twinning programs" with foreign universities have sprung up in Malaysia. In these programs, like the one I worked for, students are able to earn Amwerican, British, or Australian university credits in Malaysia during two years of study, and then transfer overseas to complete their junior and sophomore years.

At the end of the day, this Affirmitive Action progranm backfires: Malays receive a sub-standard education at home, while Malaysian Chinese and Indians get a superior education abroad, only to return and continue their dominance of the economy, continuing to ask why "Malays" and "malaise" are homophones.

Mahathir bin Mohamad, thorn in the side of the West but a man I somewhat admire, examined the failings of his own race in his controversial work The Malay Dilemma.

For daily coverage of Dhimmitude in the Islamic world, see Dhimmi Watch.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Fakeness in Japan
Open Book's Amy Welborn links to two articles today on "the masters of the artificial" across the Sea of Japan East Sea.

The first is just plain sad, an indication of where many of our societies are heading: Dolls Replacing Children in Ever-Aging, Childless Japan.

The second is at worst offensive, at best culturally insensitive, but either way just plain pathetic: Fake priests in demand in Japan.

Why, pray tell? For weddings: "With Western-style weddings now the most popular choice, Japanese couples are paying for foreign men to stand in as 'priests.'''

It has been said that Japanese are born as Shintoists, marry as Christians, and die as Buddhists.

I saw the Japanese wedding-halls on a visit to the country. They look just like churches: with crosses! Here in Korea, they do faux Western weddings, but no one would ever dream of co-opting religious symbolism from a non-professed religion. The Korean wedding halls are decorated in chinsy rococo style, but there is no religious imagery.

I guess in Japan, with only 1% of its population Christian, folks can get away with such nonsense. Here in Korea, with about 35% of its population Christian (second in Asia only to the Catholic Philippines), that would be impossible.