Monday, July 29, 2013

If You Are Reading This...ANYONE!

Please switch over to my blog on Wordpress...I am done with Blogger...Blogger screwed me. My new blog is Ratfuck Journal...


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Just As Soon As I Figure This Out

I am leaving Blogger. They just screwed me royally. I inadvertently deleted four months-worth of Blogs and there is no way I can get them back and no way I can contact Blogger and no way I can talk to an actual human person.

With Blogger it's all one-way. No dialoging. NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!! If there are human persons on the other end of this site...there is no way to contact them. 

So...I am done. I am starting Ratfuck Journal over at WordPress.

A Workable Plan for the Elderly

To refine Robert Benchley's notion that there are two kinds of people in the world—the kind that divides the world into two kinds; and the kind that doesn’t—there is a third kind: the kind that has no sense of humor.

In devising a plan for the Elderly, we must divide the elderly into four kinds: 1) the kind that complains and talks about their ailments 24-7, 2) the kind that doesn't and has a great sense of humor 3) the kind that complains and talks about their ailments 24-7 and has no sense of humor; 4) the kind that doesn't complain but has no sense of humor.

I propose that everyone over the age of 70 have free-of-cost-access to an unlimited supply of happy pills and booze.  

I propose that Kind No. 1, 3 and 4 be required by law to use pills and/or booze until they stop complaining.

I propose that if Kind No. 3 and No. 4 do not stop complaining and develop a sense of humor they be used for target practice by the NRA.

I see no downside to this plan. It seems clear to me that two very large segments of our population would be made instantly happy one way or the other: The Elderly and the NRA. And the rest of the USA population will be the recipients of secondhand happiness and peace.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Lenten Orgies of Shame and Guilt

I used to get off on the Lenten Rites in the Episcopal Church of denial, and shame and recrimination over the Crucifixion of Christ. I used to love the hymns and the liturgy, the reminders of what Christ went through  He did it for us, the church says.

Some time ago I found the Good Friday reenactment of Christ's Passion tiresome and I stopped going to Good Friday services. Eventually, I got tired of the whole Episcopal Church and I stopped going. But four-and-a-half years ago, I came back to the Episcopal Church. I had missed it. I missed the tradition of getting up and getting dressed up and going to church on Sunday. I decided if I was going to come back, I would do it whole-hog. I started going to Evening Prayer, became involved in the Altar Guild. I wrote a column for my church newsletter. I started attending Bible Study. And I went to classes for those interested in joining the Episcopal Church, those desiring Baptism and those desiring to reconfirm their commitment, which is what I wanted to do and did.

But now…not so much.

I cannot bear to go to Lenten Services leading up to Good Friday which I do not relate to. I didn't even go to Palm Sunday services this year. I had always loved getting the palms and turning them into little crosses—admittedly, a distraction during the Palm Sunday sermon, but still, I liked Palm Sunday and looked forward to the denouement the next week…the joy of Easter.

But this year, I probably won't go to Easter Services either.

Maybe I'll feel like going to church again after Easter. I always liked Pentecost.

You could say I'm depressed about getting old and finding it difficult to walk anywhere, including church. And if you did say that, you'd be right.

But there is more going on. Yesterday, in a Facebook comment, I suggested the Anglican Communion needed to look inward to find the reason for a declining membership. I suggested that when any design does not work or is difficult to operate, it is not the user's fault, it's the design's fault.

And now I am trying to decide if my continued presence in my church can be a positive catalyst to effect the change that I feel is necessary, when I have no idea what that change should be.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Vatican Reality Show

It's impossible not to be a Vatican-watcher these days. Just as it's impossible to surf past Dance Moms without stopping to check out the latest loathsome behavior of stage mothers and fat dance divas, it's impossible to ignore the dithering, backing and filling, and desperate coverups overspreading the Roman Catholic Church

The most recent juicy item to emanate from the Holy See in Rome came out yesterday, February 25th, when Britain's top Cardinal Keith O'Brien resigned midst accusations that he had made homosexual advances on four younger priests. Cardinal O'Brien was born in Ireland but raised in Scotland and will reach the age of 75 on March 17th. He has been the head of the Catholic Church in Scotland since 1985.

Just last week Cardinal O'Brien made news by claiming the Roman Catholic Church should stop requiring priests to be celibate.

There is so much startling information in this story.

1) Cardinal O'Brien will not be attending the conclave to elect a new Pope even though Bishop Juan Ignacio Arrieta, the secretary for the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts said that a cardinal remains eligible to vote for the next Pope under any circumstances, even if he has been excommunicated. Why was the Pope so quick to accept O'Brien's resignation? O'Brien had told the Pope months ago that he would retire after his 75th birthday…no date had been set…why the rush to kick him out?

2) The allegations of Cardinal O'Brien making unwanted homosexual advances have not been investigated and the men making the accusations have not been named. Only recently (but not in the past), O'Brien has made unforgiving and nasty comments about homosexuals and homosexuality.

3) Cardinal O'Brien says no one can be celibate. He says celibacy is an unnatural state and cannot be maintained.

As Frank Bruni pointed out in his New York Times editorial today, Cardinal O'Brien is not accused of pedophilia, nor has he been accused of protecting pedophile priests. O'Brien has been accused of being gay.

The can of worms here is that O'Brien wants the Roman Catholic Church to cease requiring its priests to be celibate. If that actually happens, will ending the celibacy requirement apply only to heterosexual priests and will the church still require its gay priests to be celibate? And if the Church cannot rescind its longtime claim that homosexuality is a sin, how will rescinding its celibacy requirement remove the problem of homosexual sex in the Vatican?

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Benedict XVI Does Not Deserve Kudos

This is so ridiculous…even the Anglican Church via its new Archbishop Justin Welby, has come out with an encomium worthy of a saint with regard to Pope Ratz.

That's insane.

Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger, aka Pope Benedict XVI, is a disgrace to any religion and to the entire homo sapiens race.

He singlehandedly encouraged pedophilia in the Roman Catholic Church by choosing to protect pedophiles over protecting vulnerable children.

How more egregious a crime can a human person commit?

And yet, now that he is retiring for God only knows what reason, the world has gone mad and has decided to write glowing reports of the wonderful things this criminal has done as Pope. 

Not only has he done nothing wonderful as Pope, his notorious crimes against humanity date back to when he was Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from 1981 to 2005.
Not only does he not care about children, not only does he protect pedophile priests over children, not only does he think first about the reputation of the Vatican before considering the harm pedophiles do to children, he also depises homosexuals and women and has abased both groups in every way possible during his tenure as pope.

B16 is stepping down…that is a good thing. B16 has hand-picked his successor…that is a bad thing. B16 will be gone by Easter…that is a good thing. B16 has set back the Roman Catholic Church and its mission to do good, or at least to do no harm by 1000 years and that is a very bad thing.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Pope B16 Resigns

So…it's been 600 years since a Pope has resigned. The last pope to resign, Gregory XII, ended a "church schism" in 1415 by resigning.

The Vatican's PR department says B16 decided to resign many months ago.

Why don't I believe that?

Because, leopards don't change their spots; because megalomaniacs don't quit; because control freaks don't go gentle into the night. Because Pope Benedict XVI, aka Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger--the previous pope's "enforcer"--would never resign unless forced to do so.

What are the possibles here?

It's possible Pope Ratz has Alzheimer's which has become so severe that he cannot continue his duties.

It's possible that Pope Ratz has an incurable and fatal disease, and will be dead before Easter.

It's possible the Vatican's mafia, aka The Curia, is so fed up with their insanely malevolent and inept leader that it has issued a death threat to B16: resign or die and reminding him of the fate of Pope John Paul I in 1978.

But the real likelihood is that some information about the Roman Catholic Church is going to erupt that Ratz would not be able to handle because of his age and infirmities. Ergo, the Curia has forced B16's hand.

Lots of luck to the new guy, who, the Vatican says, will be elected by Easter. If the Curia is so powerful, and it is, that it can force Joseph Ratzinger to resign, the new guy is a sitting duck. One assumes the new Pope believes in God's mercy. He's going to need it.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Good Guys/Bad Guys in the Pharm Game

I’m trying to sort through the crappola printed on the New York Times front page this morning: “Biotech Firms, Billions at Risk, Lobby States to Limit Generics”. 

The nut of this article is that big-bucks pharmaceutical firms are trying to get state and
federal l legislatures to make laws prohibiting the manufacture of generic drugs—those drugs that are just like the brand name originals but muchmuchmuch cheaper.
Where the crappola comes in, is in the parsing. Some of those cheaper drugs are called generics and some are called biosimilars—in any case, they are made by chemical processes rather than produced in living cells. The big pharms are claiming they aren’t safe because they are not really “just like” the originals and therefore should not have the same name as the originals. Laws say that generic drugs have to have the same name as brand name drugs or they cannot be used interchangeably.
Legislators who have gotten on the band wagon to outlaw generics because they are not safe are going on record bloviating about the complexity of the “molecules” which they do not understand any bettter than you and I. What the legislators do understand is that the big-bucks pharmaceuticals have elected legislators by giving huge donations to political campaigns and political parties and they expect a quid pro quo.
What is not at issue here is the safety and health of patients. 
If the pharms cared one iota about patient health they would not spend billions of dollars on ad campaigns to promote drugs that have lethal side effects and/or have not been properly tested for safety. In addition, these pharms would not put drugs on the market which the pharms themselves admit have a 5% chance of being lethal—which percentage drug companies call “acceptable”.
A 5% possibility of horrific side effects , cancer and death may not be acceptable to you and me, but it is an acceptable rate of failure to drug companies.
What is at the heart of this hue and cry about generic drugs and their so-called safety is money. If you and I and doctors and hospitals opt for cheaper drugs, the big pharmaceuticals lose billions and billions of dollars. And that rate of failure is not acceptable to the big pharms.