The Thinking 
Housewife
 

Hurray for Tears!

February 27, 2017

1827 or 1829 A Figure Weeping Over a Grave pen and brown ink 8 x 12.7 cm Metropolitan Museum of art, New York

EYES AND TEARS
—-  by Andrew Marvell

HOW wisely Nature did decree,
With the same eyes to weep and see;
That, having viewed the object vain,
They might be ready to complain!

And, since the self-deluding sight
In a false angle takes each height,
These tears, which better measure all,
Like watery lines and plummets fall.

Two tears, which sorrow long did weigh
Within the scales of either eye,
And then paid out in equal poise,
Are the true price of all my joys.

What in the world most fair appears,
Yea, even laughter, turns to tears;
And all the jewels which we prize
Melt in these pendants of the eyes.

I have through every garden been,
Amongst the red, the white, the green,
And yet from all the flowers I saw,
No honey, but these tears could draw. Read More »

 

Getting By

February 27, 2017

A READER writes:

Regarding Rachel Dolezal: Why is it almost always the case that any poor woman must be offered prostitution or porn? I guess when all else fails they always have that. Men have nothing really. Read More »

 

Anti-Pope Watches Circus Performers

February 26, 2017

 

SEE more here. (Warning: Vulgar images.)

 

My Betty

February 26, 2017

 

le13 Leon de Smet (1881-1966). Still Life with Flowers

Still Life with Flowers, Leon de Smet

ALAN writes:

One day recently I reread your remembrance of a woman you admired in your childhood.

There was a Betty in my life, too.  She was there before I was born, as a friend of the woman who would marry my uncle.  The two young women met before World War II when they worked at an industrial plant in St. Louis.  Betty married a Navy man sometime in the 1940s.  But he died unexpectedly of natural causes.  They had no children, and Betty had no siblings.

I first became aware of Betty in 1952 or ’53.  Her name was Elizabeth, but no one ever called her that.  She was always “Betty” to us, plain and simple.  She was of average height and had black hair.  There was nothing pretentious about Betty.  She was as honest and down to earth as they come.  A snapshot from the mid-1950s shows Betty and me sitting on the floor by our Christmas tree.

She drove a mid-1950s maroon Ford.  When I knew she was coming to visit us, I would sit by a window and watch eagerly for her car to come into view.  She chain-smoked cigarettes and helped sustain the Coca-Cola company by drinking countless Coca-Colas in the popular 6½ green-glass bottles. Read More »

 

The Beginning Point of Wisdom

February 25, 2017

 

16 Rafal Malczewski (Polish painter, 1892-1965) Spring in the Mountains 1937

Rafal Malczewski, Spring in the Mountains; 1937

“THERE is no one more rich, no one more free, no one more powerful than he who can forsake himself and all passing things and truly hold himself to be the meanest and lowest of all.”

—  Thomas à Kempis, The Imitation of Christ

 

The Bad Conscience

February 25, 2017

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NOTHING is sweeter than repentance. Nevertheless, many people in the modern world think that Lent, which begins this week, is about wallowing in guilt. They see it as a grim, masochistic, uncharitable season if they think about it at all.

They know nothing of the relief that comes with revealed guilt and true repentance. They don’t understand that Lent is the exact opposite of wallowing in guilt. It is the unburdening of guilt. They know not the beauty of repentance.

But it’s hard to believe in Lent if you don’t believe in the concept of sin.

I read somewhere recently — I can’t remember where — that all we need to do in order to be good and happy is trust in our own consciences. Did the author know anything about human nature? We are so good at lying to ourselves. We are so good at deflecting pangs of conscience.

The Rev. Franz Hunolt wrote in the 18th century about the many ways in which we deceive our own consciences. His essay, “On the False Peace of a Sinful Conscience,” includes the sort of pious language that is off-putting to cold, modern sensibilities, but Fr. Hunolt makes perceptive observations about the psychology of self-deception:

It is true, my dear brethren, that at first conscience cries out in that way to every one who is guilty of sin; but what can one do to silence this voice of conscience, and to free himself from the tortures of remorse? Self-love supplies all kinds of pretexts and false arguments to pervert a man’s judgment and to persuade him that there is nothing wrong in what he is going to do, that it is even good and praiseworthy. Read More »

 

Milo, Moral Nominalism and Rage

February 25, 2017

KIDIST Paulos Asrat considers the reaction by the atheist Alt-Right figure Richard Spencer to the Milo Yiannapoulos case. She wonders what grounds Spencer has for being scandalized by Milo’s controversial remarks. If God does not exist, she asks,

Why is pedophilia immoral? What is wrong with loving little children? After all pedophiles can argue that their behavior is a form of love. Unless it is a “rapist pedophile,” most pedophiles are attracted to one (or two or three) children and maintain long term interactions with them. The young children become attached to them.

Legally society can decided that having sex with five-year-old children (who can say “yes” and “no,” and make decisions) is perfectly acceptable and that it is not a crime.

In a related post at The Orthosphere, Kristor writes that individuals who don’t believe in objective moral truth are prone to political rage: Read More »

 

St. Thomas Aquinas Against Open Borders

February 24, 2017

 

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THOMAS D. WILLIAMS, PH.D. explains in a few words why the famous saint and theologian would have opposed today’s open borders.

 

What’s Wrong with Our Financial System?

February 24, 2017

M. OLIVER HEYDORN writes at the Clifford Hugh Douglas Institute for the Study and Promotion of Social Credit:

At the very heart of the modern economy we find this thing called ‘finance’. Finance is to the economy what an operating system is to a computer. For it is the financial system which allows an economy’s ‘hardware’ (i.e., its raw materials, labour, machinery, etc.) to be actualized in the service of specific ‘software applications’ (i.e., production programmes). As far as the formal economy is concerned, it is true to say that finance is the essential interface and animating principle.

But the financial system, i.e., the banking and cost accountancy system, is also a purely human artefact composed of institutions, laws, and conventions. This means that it can function more or less adequately. If it is properly designed, it will serve the common good in an effective, efficient, and fair manner. If it is not properly designed, it will tend, instead, to serve the vested interests of those who own and operate the financial system, thus transforming financiers (both national and international) into an economic and political oligarchy.

Social Credit holds that the conventional financial system is not properly designed and that, in consequence, it has become impossible for any economic association operating under its rules to fulfill its true purpose (i.e., the delivery of those goods and services that people can use with profit to themselves with the least amount of labour and resource consumption) to the extent that such a fulfillment is physically possible. In other words, because there is a ‘bug’ in the economy’s operating system, the economy’s hardware is artificially constrained and its activity is misdirected. Chronic dysfunction in the form of poverty, servility, the recurring cycle of boom and bust, constant inflation, heavy taxation, economic waste and sabotage, forced economic growth, ever-increasing indebtedness, and the centralization of wealth, privilege, and power in fewer and fewer hands is the inevitable result. Read More »

 

Patience Is Best

February 23, 2017

 

Working Title/Artist: Shepherd and shepherdess scene Department: Am. Decorative Arts Culture/Period/Location: HB/TOA Date Code: Working Date: ca. 1740 photography by mma 1989, transparency #1a scanned and retouched by film and media (jn) 3_16_04

FROM the wonderful little book, Patience, Meditations for a Month, by Richard F. Clarke, S.J., that makes good Lenten reading:

On Impatience

1. Impatience is one of the most foolish of all faults. It gains nothing for us; it does not relieve our sufferings, but aggravates them. No one enjoys any peace as long as he is yielding to feelings of impatience; he is discontented, miserable, uneasy. He finds intolerable what he could bear well enough if only he would make the necessary effort, and gulp down the rising irritation or suppress the angry words. He is always in a fever, and is a nuisance to himself and to all around him. Do not I know this by experience? If not, I must thank God for giving me so happy a disposition.

2. Impatience is also one of the most ridiculous of all faults. There is something laughable and contemptible in the fuming of the impatient man over some trifle, in his rage because he cannot overcome some difficulty or have his own way as he desires. An impatient man always makes a bad impression. If I could see myself as others see me when I give way to impatience, I should be thoroughly ashamed and very careful not to make myself so foolish again.

3. Impatience, when voluntarily indulged, is a sort of indirect rebellion against God. It is a practical refusal to bear willingly the trials that He has laid upon us; it is a kicking against the goad. No wonder that we hurt ourselves in so doing; it is only what we deserve. We all of us need trials, but if instead of profiting by them and learning patience from them, they are to us only an occasion of impatience, they simply increase our condemnation. If I give way to impatience, it shows that I am not subject as I ought to be to the law of God, and still less to the sweet yoke of Christ.

 

A Nation of Weirdos

February 23, 2017

TRUMP has dropped Obama’s federal bathroom edict, provoking the usual temper tantrums. This is a good step by Trump, but the conflict is far from over.

“The consequences of this decision will no doubt be heartbreaking,” said Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign. “This isn’t a states’ rights issue; it’s a civil rights issue.”

“Heartbreaking.”

Get a life, Mr. Griffin. It is heartbreaking when a child gets cancer. It is heartbreaking when a child does not have a normal family life. It is heartbreaking when a child lives without any bathrooms at all. It is heartbreaking when a child is fed toxic hormones because he supposedly identifies with the opposite sex. It is heartbreaking when a child is never taught the purpose of life and is led to believe human existence is an utterly meaningless struggle for achievement and material things.

It is not heartbreaking when a boy has to use the cinderblock school lavatory marked “boys” or has to wear normal boy clothes so that he will not be taunted in cinderblock lavatories marked “boys.”

This country does not deserve sewers. Read More »

 

Depleted Uranium Used in Syria

February 23, 2017

THE radioactive weapons used by the U.S. in its attacks in Syria are likely to cause cancer, birth defects and other illnesses for many years to come. See the report by Daniel McAdams. Read More »

 

Disappearing Ink

February 22, 2017

THE INVENTIVENESS that HoloHoaxers bring to the art of propaganda is truly unparalleled.

 

A Few Words about Milo

February 22, 2017

DUE to illness, I can’t post much today, but I want to say a few words about the repulsive Milo Yiannopoulos, a major celebrity in the Trump Cult. I will refrain from posting Yiannopoulos’s Cooler-Than-Thou visage. It is all over the Internet and news already. If you are not familiar with why this political performance artist and false opposition figure is in the news this week, you can catch up here.

Yiannopoulos is a change agent who, like Trump himself, receives substantial financial backing from powerful people.  How do we know the former is well-funded, aside from his already extensive visibility and the gobs of free publicity he has received for quite a while? Immediately after his resignation from the website Breitbart, Yiannopoulos announced that he would be starting his own news platform and had another publisher (Simon and Schuster canceled) already lined up for his new book. Wow! That’s quite an instantaneous comeback for someone who has been nationally disgraced by his comments about adolescents and pedophiles. Seems that he was prepared for this orchestrated controversy to happen, doesn’t it? That suggests planning. Read More »

 

The Illusion of Sexual Freedom

February 21, 2017

 

Lust, Pieter Van Der Heyden; 1558

Lust, Pieter Van Der Heyden; 1558

[T]HE effect of treating sex as only one innocent natural thing [is] that every other innocent natural thing [becomes] soaked and sodden with sex. For sex cannot be admitted to a mere equality among elementary emotions or experiences like eating and sleeping. The moment sex ceases to be a servant it becomes a tyrant. There is something dangerous and disproportionate in its place in human nature, for whatever reason; and it does really need a special purification and dedication. The modern talk about sex being free like any other sense, about the body being beautiful like any tree or flower, is either a description of the Garden of Eden or a piece of thoroughly bad psychology, of which the world grew weary two thousand years ago.”

— G.K. Chesterton, St. Francis of Assisi, Image Books, 1957; p. 29

 

Rodrigo

February 21, 2017

 

THIS RECORDING OF Spanish composer’s Joaquín Rodrigo’s Fantasía para un Gentilhombre (Fantasia for a Gentleman), a concerto for guitar and orchestra, may brighten your day.

 

Suicidal France

February 20, 2017

FRANCE makes it illegal to protect its own children with a new law criminalizing the dissemination of negative information about abortion.

 

Norma McCorvey

February 20, 2017

THE woman who was the chief plaintiff in Roe vs. Wade said her participation in the case was “the biggest mistake of my life.” She died last week at the age of 69.

She also said:

“I long for the day that justice will be done and the burden from all of these deaths will be removed from my shoulders.” Read More »