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Quote of the Day

March 2, 2015

FROM A COLLEGE professor writing in response to this piece about trashing college books by Thomas F. Bertonneau:

I have had the privilege, so to speak, to observe the self-destruction of the humanities from the inside. The main characteristic of the products of modern graduate schools of the humanities is that they know exactly what they are supposed to say and how to say it as pretentiously and awkwardly as possible.

 

Girl Soldier

March 2, 2015

 

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THE INSANITY of placing women in combat is once again illustrated by this recent photo of soldiers in the Army Ranger’s training course, including this woman, who appears quite petite and as if she is just barely holding herself up. Twenty-six women tried out. Five passed.

In any normal age, this would be considered female oppression. In ours, it’s emancipation. Read More »

 

Ego Amo Te

March 2, 2015

THE Prayer of St. Xavier, sung here, describes the love of God at its highest:

O Deus, ego amo te,
O God I love Thee for Thyself
Nec amo te ut salves me,
and not that I may heaven gain
Nec quod qui te non diligent,
nor yet that they who love Thee not
Æterno igne pereunt.
must suffer hell’s eternal pain.
Read More »

 

March 2, 2015

NOTE: On some operating systems, such as Androids and iPads, this new format is appearing without the full margins. We are working on the problem. In the meantime, you might try viewing it on another computer if you are having difficulties.

 

H-1B Visas and the Tech Industry

March 2, 2015

FROM a report on the displacement of Americans by foreign high tech workers in Sacramento:

“Hiring younger H-1Bs instead of older Americans means you save money,” [Computer Science Professor Norm Matloff] said.

“It doesn’t matter whether an H-1B takes the job here that you would have taken or, on the other hand, if the job is sent overseas. Either way, you as an American programmer or engineer, [don’t] have that job,” Matloff said, comparing the visas to the controversial practice of outsourcing American jobs to other countries.

“It’s not any different than what illegal aliens have done to construction workers,” said Kim Berry, the webmaster of two sites that almost exclusively address the influx of foreign workers in the U.S. IT job market. “Why hire an American to do the roofing when you can have a truckload of illegals do it for $30 per day each?”

 

Feminist Girls

March 2, 2015

SOPHIA writes:

In a way I’m sorry to share this with you! I got it through about 50 seconds of this video with the volume down very low. There appears to be some feminist organization called “FCKH8″ that got little girls dressed as princesses to cuss repeatedly while lamenting inequality. I’m really without words to describe how disgusting it is. Perhaps you already heard about it, but here it is. Read More »

 

The Man Who Made Notre Dame Anti-Catholic

March 1, 2015

 

Theodore Hesburgh presiding over the Protestant-Masonic rite falsely known as the Catholic Mass.

DON VINCENZO writes:

After a long life, the Rev. Theodore Hesburgh died on Feb. 26; he was 97. From 1952 through 1987, Fr. Hesburgh, a member of the Congregation of the Sacred Cross, served as President of Notre Dame University, whose football heroics once garnered the name “the Fighting Irish,” although the number of Hibernian Americans on the team was small and increasingly smaller with each year. After leaving as head of the university, he still exercised a great influence not only on Notre Dame, but on the path other Catholic universities and colleges would follow.  In short, although he would probably object to the title, Fr. Hesburgh became something of an icon to many in the Church. Whether or not that sobriquet is deserved I cannot say, but what can be said beyond cavil was that in seeking to change Notre Dame, he reflects the post Vatican II clerical mindset: the Church must be brought up to date; the Church and its institutions of higher learning must be modernized.

Read More »

 

March 1, 2015

NOTE: On some computers, this new format is appearing without the full margins. We are working on the problem. In the meantime, you might try viewing it on another computer if you are having difficulties.

 

Crying Angels

March 1, 2015

 

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ONE WINTER NIGHT, about thirty years ago, I stood in The Pen and Pencil Club in Philadelphia, listening to a man in his thirties tell me stories of his childhood.

A woman we both knew walked by, smiling, and said, “Are you listening to tales of Chester?”

I laughed. “As a matter of fact, I am,” I said.

I can’t recall what episode I was hearing for the first time that night. I think it might have been about Jonesy, who went to the store in fairly good health to buy his funeral suit and died a week later. Or maybe it was the time Buttons was almost arrested for killing a Persian cat while on vacation at the Jersey shore.

I can’t recall which true story it was, but I pretty much decided that night I wanted to marry that man.

Listening to his memories was like standing by a burning hearth. The warmth penetrated me, the room and the world beyond it. I figured anyone who could so love the flawed and idiosyncratic people of Chester could possibly love me too. For a long time. Through thick and very thin.

I married Anthony Wood and, for 27 years, I have lived by the warmth of that fire.

Compared to the human landscape in a depersonalized suburb, the people of this industrial city on the banks of the rat-gray Delaware River, living with us intangibly all this time, are brimming with personality. They are exotica. Eccentricity and its sharp singularity seem to be among the fruits of economic hardship and God’s sanctifying graces.

Though the industrial and social microcosm of my husband’s Chester is long gone, almost completely demolished and replaced with a hulking casino, vacant lots, crime-ridden streets and government offices, his stories evoked something permanent and undying. Chester was alive still.

Enough from me.

Here is Part II of my husband’s own recollections, “Tales of Chester.” For Parts One and Two, you may go here and here.

 

 Crying Angels

When day broke that morning, Renner was sitting in my father’s easy chair, his legs propped over the arms, smoking a corncob, a bowl of cold oatmeal on the coffee table.

“Terrible thing to lose your home,” he said.

No doubt it was. To me, though, the loss of his home was the best consequence of the fire. Since he had lost his home, he would have to stay with us. I wouldn’t have to visit him; he would be right here. More immediately and excitingly, we had become the central figures in a high drama. A neighborhood legend had lost his house in a fire that everyone would be talking about. We were giving him shelter.

School that day was endless. How could the tedium of learning decimals and fractions and penmanship compete with the excitation of being a star of such a drama? When at long last school ended, when the dismissal line finally approached my house, I burst into the front door to resume my starring role and to comfort the neighborhood legend who had lost his home.

Renner wasn’t there, to my immeasurable disappointment. I went to find him at his brother-in-law’s tobacco shop on Eighth Street.

Read More »

 

A New Look

February 28, 2015

Computer programmers are geniuses. They have minds with lots of secret passageways. You open up a door and all this code comes tumbling out, like gold coins and jewels stored away in a castle. I don’t get it how they navigate between everyday existence and all that code, but I attribute it to their genius. Thanks to a generous and extremely smart reader who is a web designer, there is a new look at The Thinking Housewife. I am very grateful to the reader who has worked on this site for his time and expertise.

There are still a few tweaks that need to be made. I ask for your patience as we get it going. I think you will find this new theme and the Merriweather font much easier on the eye.

 

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Bonfire of the Humanities

February 28, 2015

 

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THOMAS F. BERTONNEAU writes:

Regarding “Books in the Trash,” in the 1990s when I taught and did other things in Michigan, I knew many senior faculty members who, coming to their retirement and considering a move to smaller quarters, wanted to sell off the books that they had acquired over a lifetime of scholarship.  In those days it was still possible to invite one of the second-hand book dealers in East Lansing, Ann Arbor or Kalamazoo to take a library off its owner’s hands for a fair price.  When my wife and I left Michigan to come to Upstate New York in 2001, I was able to sell a cumulus of several hundred “academic titles” to a dealer in East Lansing who fully expected to resell them swiftly to humanities graduate students at Michigan State.

More recently, however, this situation appears to have changed.  In various journals dedicated to teaching in the humanities – and on various websites with the same focus – anecdotes have appeared about how very nearly impossible it is to get rid of books.  The second-hand dealers have become extremely selective even as they have diminished in numbers.  It might have been in Academic Questions that I read the sad story of a retiring English professor who, unable even to donate his library, ended up consigning much of it to a bonfire simply because in smaller quarters there would be no space for the many volumes.  A colleague of mine who is about to retire after thirty years of teaching college English also can find no one to take his books.  Not even the campus library is interested in them. Read More »

 

Pizza’s Empire

February 28, 2015

 

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ASTUTE analysts in many spheres are coming to a conclusion reached here a long time ago: “Pizza is going to rule the world in the next twenty years.” Actually, I would say it is much less time than that, and my pizza prophecies have generally proved to be true. Pretty soon, it may even be mandatory that each person report to the government on pizza intake and prove consumption of at least 6,000 slices a year, which is just about the national average. The Pizza Complex has, as we all know, already extended its reach into the highest levels of government.

U.S. President Obama delivers pizza to volunteers at his campaign office in Williamsburg

 

Books in the Trash

February 27, 2015

 

DAN R. writes:

A California public library has thrown away more than a hundred-thousand books in the past two years.  Some were in a state of disrepair, but most were regarded as “outdated” and were disposed of in order to make way for newer books. While on principle I find the throwing away of books to be reprehensible, I can’t help but reflect on an irony: in homeschooling our children, the bulk of books we bought were older ones from library sales and thrift stores because the great majority of children’s books, beginning with those published in the mid-1970s, reflected the “progressive” values we most definitely did NOT want to impart to our children. Read More »

 

The Unprincipled Exception of the Bridal Gown

February 26, 2015

 

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A READER writes:

It is almost odd, considering how casual modern life has become, that one of the Western wedding traditions still around is that brides in formal weddings still wear a long white dress.  You would think by now they would be in white slacks (and if it meant more money for fashion and retail she probably would be).

 

A Healthy Black Nationalism and its Benefits for Blacks

February 26, 2015

 

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BRETT STEVENS writes:

David J. raises an interesting point when he talks of the possibility of a black homeland versus separation into what would amount to a separate state in North America. I would like to speak to the benefits  of this arrangement for African-Americans.

Before I examine that, I would like to object to the negative characterization of blacks. Yes, there are fundamental differences  between tropical people and northern people regarding morality, which is the basis of civilization. And surely there is an IQ gap. But is it that distinct from the 95 IQ average in Ireland or Russia, since the African-American IQ average is somewhere between 89-90?

[EDITOR’S NOTE: The negative comments about intelligence were made by the black commenter, David J.]

As a Southern man, I have known and loved black people my entire life.  There are many good men and women among them, but they will never be featured in the news because doing so would not support the leftist  agenda of integrating the Other in order to destroy the majority.

Read More »