Monday, July 16, 2018

Madame Royale, l'orpheline de la Révolution

Here is a French documentary about Madame Royale, with authentic sets and costumes, and beautiful scenery.


The President I Didn’t Want

From USA Today:
First, he picked Mike Pence as his running mate. As I’ve written before, I’ve known Pence for over 20 years and he has the conservative bona fides. So, of course, I supported this decision. Then, after taking office, Trump began to reverse President Barack Obama's executive orders and burdensome regulations on businesses. He approved the Keystone XL pipeline. He cut taxes and the economy picked up steam. Again, I supported these decisions. Sure, he failed to repeal Obamacare, but its individual mandate was repealed in the tax-cut bill. 

As a Christian, I have been accused of hypocrisy and my faith has been questioned for not condemning Trump's past extramarital affairs, his language and treatment of women. Look, I know he is a deeply flawed man. So am I. The Bible says we all are. But evangelicals believe in grace and forgiveness and are commanded to pray for our leaders. So I support him in prayer.

Trump has proven to be pro-religious liberty, pro-life and pro-Israel. He moved the American embassy to Jerusalem, pulled out of the Paris climate agreement and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and began negotiations to denuclearize North Korea. I support all of these policies. There have been a few hiccups. Trump signed a budget bill that increased the national debt, which is now over $21 trillion. The Russia probe is still a cloud over his administration, and I don't like trade wars. 

But here’s the dominating reason I’ve changed my mind about Trump's ability to lead: judges. I support his picks of Justice Neil Gorsuch, his new U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the host of conservative federal judges that Trump has gotten confirmed. I shudder to think of the activist judges that a President Hillary Clinton would have picked.

In my opinion, Trump has had the most successful 18 months as president than any other I've ever drawn. So yes, I support his presidency. I admit that I was wrong about Trump. He's not a clown. He's a businessman, entertainer, and now the president that I didn't want but now think we need. (Read more.)
Pictures of President and Mrs. Trump in the UK, HERE and HERE. Share

The Man Behind Pears’ Soap

From All Things Georgian:
The development of cosmetics and perfumes have been part of life since time immemorial, but did you know that the original Pears’ soap was a product of the Georgian era? A bar of soap that is still used today by many, had it origins in 18th century London. Andrew Pears was born on 4th April 1768 the elder son of William, a farmer and Elizabeth Pears at St Ewe, near Mevagissey, Cornwall. He and his two siblings, Edward and Maria appear to have been raised by their father, their mother died when he was around 7 years old. At the age of 21, Andrew moved to London to serve an apprenticeship as a barber; eventually owning his own business. (Read more.)

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Bastille Day and the French Revolution Were Not Caused by Marie Antoinette

From The New American:
July 14 marks another anniversary of Bastille Day, the day the Paris mob rioted and stormed the Bastille, a prison fortress in the city. The popular image of the incident is that of the French Revolution itself, which is that the liberty-loving French folk in Paris spontaneously rose up against a tyrannical king and his arrogant wife, and heroically stormed the symbol of the Old Regime — liberating hundreds of political prisoners. This led to an abolition of the monarchy and the establishment of a government dedicated to liberty for all the people of France.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Almost everyone has heard that Queen Marie Antoinette said, “Let them eat cake,” in haughty response to the plea of the poor starving masses of France: “We have no bread.”

That is also untrue.

And it is widely believed that Antoinette caused or at least was the principal cause — of the entire French Revolution.

That is ridiculous.

Whereas Louis XVI and his wife, Marie, are usually pictured in the history books and in the popular culture as tyrants of the worst sort, the truth is quite different. The real Marie Antoinette was a charitable woman, who lodged and fed 12 poor families, at her own expense, at Trianon. She founded the Society of Ladies of Maternal Charity. She even once stopped her carriage for over an hour to aid an injured person, waiting until a surgeon was located.

Historian Antonia Fraser disputed the cruel libel in her book Marie Antoinette, the Journey. “As a handy journalistic cliché, [“Let them eat cake”] it may never die,” Fraser wrote, adding “such ignorant behavior would have been quite out of character. The unfashionably philanthropic Marie Antoinette would have been far more likely to bestow her own cake impulsively upon the starving people before her.”

If the Revolution was not caused by Marie Antoinette, then just who did cause it? (Read more.)

Old and New Tyrannies

From Crisis:
Assaulting age-old truths, norms, legal and constitutional principles, political practices and structures, and even religious beliefs, and forcing people to conform for the sake of justifying sexual immorality is nothing new. Consider the Protestant Reformation in England. As one writer has stated, it happened because of King Henry VIII’s lusts. To get his divorce and to give an aura of legitimacy to his taking up with Anne Boleyn, Henry not only severed England from the Catholic Church and ushered in the long period of persecution against Catholic believers, but began a sweeping and destructive transformation of the country’s politics and law. As Professor Richard O’Sullivan wrote, at Henry’s behest, and to carry out his aims, Parliament assumed absolute power—when in fact, it was the king who had the absolute power—which went against the country’s entire previous tradition. This new governmental absolutism shredded the country’s common law tradition—and the liberty of subjects that it guaranteed—and discarded the natural law behind it.

This is why, O’Sullivan says, at St. Thomas More’s trumped up trial for treason—which at bottom, as the dramatic moment in the movie A Man for All Seasons makes clear, was because he would not accept Henry’s illicit marriage—his appealing to the common law rule that a defendant’s silence could not be used to convict him was just brushed aside. After the guilty verdict, O’Sullivan says that More castigated the law he was accused of violating, which required Henry’s subjects to take an oath acknowledging him as the head of the Church, as “contrary to the law of God, the law of reason, and the law of the land.” As O’Sullivan noted, this was a “major disruption” to the “common law thought pattern” that made all of these, in this order, the basis of English legal, political, and social life. (Read more.)

Euthanasia is a Declaration of 'No Confidence' in Medicine

From the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition:
I've been opposing assisted suicide and euthanasia for 20 years. I see it as a form of abandonment, when you have somebody who is suffering. To say to them: "Yes, the way to eliminate suffering is to eliminate the sufferer," is to confirm the person‘s worst fears that they are a burden, that they will be less worthy of being loved if they continue to survive, and it's almost a declaration of no confidence in medicine. On the one hand, the euthanasia movement is saying we can't trust doctors to make us comfortable and to alleviate our symptoms. On the other hand, we're saying we should allow those same doctors to kill us or prescribe lethal drugs so that they we can kill ourselves. It turns thousands of years of medical ethics on its head. (Read more.)

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Anthem of Royal France

Here is the hymn of the French monarchy, Tchaikovsky's version, used in his ballet of Sleeping Beauty. It is also known as Vive Henri IV.
Vive Henri IV
Vive ce roi vaillant !
Vive Henri IV
Vive ce roi vaillant !
Ce diable à quatre
A le triple talent
De boire de battre
Et d'être un vers galant.
(de 1800 à 1899 : ) 
Au diable guerres, 
Rancunes et partis. 
Comme nos pères,
 Chantons en vrais amis 
Au choc des verres, 
Les roses et les lys ! 
Au choc des verres, 
Les roses et les lys ! 

(en 1774 : ) 
Chantons l'antienne 
Qu'on chantera dans mille ans, 
Que Dieu maintienne 
En paix ses descendants 
Jusqu'à ce qu'on prenne, 
La lune avec les dents. 
Jusqu'à ce qu'on prenne, 
La lune avec les dents.  
Originally from the sixteenth century, the royalist anthem Vive Henri IV was featured in  Collé's 1770 opera La partie de chasse d'Henri IV. In 1774 it was often sung to honor Louis XVI, became popular again during the Restoration in 1814, as is told in the novel Madame Royale. The lyrics celebrate the monarch who was seen by the French people as the epitome of justice, kindness, and virility. It was an attempt to identify the Bourbon dynasty with the popular first Bourbon monarch, Henri IV. Louis XVI had also been seen as sharing with the King from Navarre an easy manner with the common folk, as well as a strong sense of justice and love of the hunt. Early in their reign, the King and Queen held a costume ball where everyone came in dress from the era of le bon roi Henri, with Marie-Antoinette herself garbed as Henri's beloved mistress, Gabrielle d'Estrées. It was part of the Queen's attempt to show that she was loved by her husband, and that she was his mistress as well as his wife. During the Restoration, members of the Bourbon family, especially the daughter of Louis XVI, the Duchess of Angoulême, were frequently welcomed with the anthem. After the fall of the Bourbons in 1830, the anthem was no longer played, and soon became a relic of the past.

Another version.

And another.

And another, along with the ancient coronation hymn, Domine Salvum Fac Regem.


Assassination of Marat

From The Daily Telegraph:
Marat, born in Boudry, Switzerland in 1743, had been a well-known doctor, specialising in skin and eye conditions, in London where he published research papers in the 1770s. In 1777 he was appointed as physician to guards of the comte d’Artois, later Charles X, youngest brother of Louis XVI, and also called to consult at the Palace of Versailles. After failing to be appointed to the French Academy of Sciences, Marat quit his medical post to publish articles pleading for the drafting of a liberal constitution when the States General met in June 1789, the first since 1614.

In September 1789 he published a daily newspaper, Le Publiciste Parisian, later changing the name to L’Ami du peuple, or the people’s friend. Forced to flee to London in late 1789 because of his virulent attacks on royalty, he returned in May 1790 to condemn monarchy, government and the aristocracy in his newspaper. (Read more.)

Hungarian Fertility Rates Rise

From Breitbart:
“The country is not just experiencing a fertility spike; Hungary is winding back the clock on much of the fertility and family-structure transition that demographers have long considered inevitable,” writes the author of “Is Hungary Experiencing a Policy-Induced Baby Boom?” from the Institute for Family Studies website. “That’s unusual,” author Lyman Stone wrote, “as most countries around the world are currently experiencing stable or falling fertility, especially in Europe.”

Mr Stone suggests that fiscal implications — such as subsidies for married couples buying houses, a change in tax deductions for children, and a growing economy — likely only played a small part on their own and estimates that those factors, coupled with cultural policies, were what had brought about the rise in fertility rate.

Stone points to Hungary’s pro-family constitution adopted in 2011 which stated that “We believe that our children and grandchildren will make Hungary great again,” and which defends “the institution of marriage as the union of a man and a woman… and the family as the basis of the nation’s survival.” (Read more.)


From Geri Walton:
Scurvy was first noticed as a disease in the time of Hippocrates, and, during the Crusades, soldiers reported suffering from some mysterious ailment that Jean de Joinville described as a disorder that “soon increased so much in the army … barbers were forced to cut away very large pieces of flesh from the gums to enable their patients to eat.”[1]

Between 1500 and 1800 some two million sailors died from the “scourge of sailors” and it appeared to be medical mystery. One twentieth-century historian provides details of what sufferers experienced:
“After about three months with no vitamin C, the sufferer begins to feel tired and listless. Within another two months, the skins is affected, first becoming rough and dry; by around the end of the sixth month, hemorrhages in the legs appear and wounds will not heal. At seven and a half months the victim’s gums soften, swell and turn purple − historical sources add that teeth became loose as well, and that old wounds opened up again. The conditions appears to become life-threatening in the period between seven and nine and a half months.”[2]
A British naval physician, named James Lind, learned about the dangers of scurvy because of the voyages of the British Commodore George Anson, 1st Baron Anson, who circumnavigated the globe. He brought it to Lind’s attention noting that he “lost 1,855 men out of his original complement of 2,000; numerous causes of death were listed, but most of the sailors had died of scurvy.”[3] Lind’s interest was piqued. He investigated scurvy and wrote “A Treatise of the Scurvy” in 1753, which he dedicated to Anson.

Around the same Lind also learned that a British surgeon named Edward Ives had given crew members cider to prevent scurvy and no one suffered from scurvy until the cider ran out. This greatly interested Lind and he decided to set up a trial in 1747 to test the efficacy of antiscorbutics. At the time, Lind and others believed beer was the best antiscorbutic, but because it was difficult to carry on ships, Lind resorted to giving his crewmen either citrus fruit, cider, or other substances. Lind used twelve sailors suffering from scurvy for his trial. To guard against bias and confounding factors, he ensured the twelve men were as similar as possible, and he maintained a similar environment for them and had them eat the same diet. (Read more.)

Friday, July 13, 2018

The Royal Barge

For the canals of Versailles.


The original prow


A Huge Accomplishment

From The Washington Examiner:
President Trump has selected Judge Brett Kavanaugh as his “Gorsuch 2.0.” While many in Trump’s base supported Amy Coney Barrett, others say that Kavanaugh has also been a staunch and faithful defender of religious liberty and fundamental rights during his tenure on the D.C. Circuit Court and is a proven textual originalist. He will also likely be much easier than Barrett to confirm.

While rumors have been vacillating between the four most likely nominees, Trump really had all excellent choices to pick from. Varying branches of the GOP base supported one nominee over the other since Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement, but the bottom line is that when Kavanaugh is confirmed—which will most likely happen prior to the November 2018 midterm elections—the majority of the Supreme Court will now be conservative. President Trump said during the announcement that selecting a Supreme Court justice is a “profound responsibility of the president” and “what matters is not the judge’s political views […] but whether they can do what the law and Constitution requires.” (Read more.)
From Return to Order:
With the choice of Brett Kavanaugh as candidate for Supreme Court Justice, the confirmation hearings will soon begin with a now familiar ritual of evading Roe v. Wade. Liberals will ask the nominee to define himself on the infamous 1973 decision that liberalized abortion. He will find ways of evading the question in strictly legal terms such as admitting it is the present law of the land. With the collaboration of the media, they will then try to paint the person as a religious zealot forcing the nominee to find a Kennedyesque way of explaining how he will separate his religious beliefs from his judicial decisions.

Throughout it all, both sides will insist that Roe v. Wade must not be a litmus test that will decide who the next justice is. As much as public figures and the media try to frame the debate in other terms, the abortion question is the elephant in the room. Indeed, even those who are pro-life are encouraged not to bring the subject up. Sarah Huckabee-Sanders confirmed that the President, when meeting with candidates, did not intend to ask any of them about their views on Roe v. Wade.

Houston’s Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, has pleaded that Roe v. Wade not be made the litmus test for the decision. He claims the flawed nature of the ruling makes it a bad standard for judgment that also excludes other social issues. In any case, this long-observed ritual of evading stands against Roe has served to keep abortion legal. As things become more polarized, however, this tactic is failing. (Read more.)

A Living Hell

Pray for Nigeria. From The Christian Post:
Nigerian Christians were have been displaced by the thousands due to mass slaughter in the villages surrounding Jos in Plateau state are in a "living hell" and agony, a watchdog group assisting the victims said. "The displaced Christians were in a pathetic situation," an Open Doors USA worker, identified as Kerrie, said on Tuesday. "Life has become a living hell for them. They have lost loved ones, houses, and all they labored for in the twinkling of an eye. The agony they are going through is hard to describe.

"We saw people who were still in a haze over what they have just gone through. Children were crying hysterically, perhaps because of hunger or perhaps because of hunger and the trauma."

Open Doors, which along with some indigenous churches is helping bring aid to the people in the area, estimates that at least 3,000 believers were displaced by the slaughter of over 200 people in a series of raids at the end of June. Christian leaders in Nigeria have said that as many as 6,000 people, mostly women and children, have been killed by Muslim Fulani herdsmen since the start of the year. (Read more.)

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Ladies in Wide-brimmed Hats

A collection.


Parade of the Aborticrats

From Michelle Malkin:
Last fall, actress Martha Plimpton (of “Goonies” fame long, long ago) bragged publicly that her first and “best” abortion took place at a Seattle Planned Parenthood. Plimpton promotes a movement to #ShoutYourAbortion. Adoring fans cheered and laughed as she assured them it was “heads and tails above the rest” of her multiple abortions. “If I could Yelp review it,” she cracked, “I totally would.”
Goodbye, “Goonies.” Hello, ghoulies.

Nothing to date, though, can top the Independence Day holiday display of grotesqueries committed in the name of “choice.” On the day we should unite as a nation to celebrate life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, prominent Aborticrats and their Hollywood court jesters were throwing a parade — literally — over the mass slaughter of the unborn. Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer tweeted: “Today, I am celebrating the FREEDOM of women to make their own health care decisions, as established by the Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade.”

Schumer has lied about Planned Parenthood providing “mammograms, maternity care, cancer screenings & more.” As pro-life Live Action’s Lila Rose reported, “The reality is, Planned Parenthood does zero mammograms, performs less than two percent of women’s cancer screenings in the U.S., offers virtually no prenatal care, yet does over a third of the nation’s abortions — 887 abortions every day.” One of NARAL and Planned Parenthood’s most ardent champions, Schumer high-fived colleagues in January after spearheading efforts to kill a bill banning late-term abortions past 20 weeks. Three bloody cheers for butchery!

Riding the same wicked wavelength, “comedian” Michelle Wolf starred in a patriotic holiday special last week on Netflix to lead “The Break’s” 10th Annual Salute to Abortion. (Read more.)
From Live Action:
Wolf should stick to comedy instead of attempting to explain anything having to do with life or science. Here are four truths she missed.

1. Abortion doesn’t “stop a baby from happening.” It kills a living human being.

“Look, access to abortion is good and important,” she said. “Some people say abortion is ‘killing a baby.’ It’s not. It’s stopping a baby from happening. It’s like Back to the Future and abortion is the DeLorean.”

This, of course, is false; science has proven that a preborn child is not a “potential” human; the humanity of the preborn is not up for debate. From the moment of fertilization, the baby has his or her own unique DNA, separate from the mother. Research shows that within just 16 days, the baby’s heart begins beating. Just a few weeks later, brain waves can be measured. By the end of the first trimester, most of the baby’s major organs have formed. This isn’t almost a baby, or a potential person. The preborn child is a human being. This isn’t a matter of belief, but of scientific fact, and that abortion advocates continue to deny it shows how willing they are to turn their backs on science if it doesn’t fit their ideology.

2. Being “pro-life” means being in favor of allowing human beings in the womb to live.
Wolf also argued that pro-lifers are not truly pro-life, but instead are “anti-abortion.” While many pro-lifers would not dispute that term and frequently embrace it, Wolf argues that the difference between the two is that people who are truly pro-life would also be “fighting hard for health care, child care, education, gun control and protecting the environment.”

Abortion fans tend to twist the term “pro-life” into meaning whatever they want it to mean at any given time. ‘You aren’t pro-life unless you are for (fill in the blank)’ is commonly heard. But in no other movement do you have people suggesting that opposing the killing of other human beings isn’t enough. “You’re against domestic abuse? Then you’d better be willing to feed and house all the women who are being beaten by their partners!” 

Pro-lifers — like those who were in favor of abolishing slavery — shouldn’t have to solve all of possible ramifications of ending a human injustice before that injustice is treated as such.
Wolf also ignores the wide spectrum of views among pro-lifers; One-third of Democrats, for example — who often support universal healthcare or state-funded child care — are also pro-life. Supporting liberal policies does not preclude one from opposing abortion, yet Wolf seems to think this is a rarity among pro-lifers.

3. Women don’t create life on their own.

The segment also exposed Wolf’s misandrist views. To men, she said:
I’m sure this brings up a lot of feelings and thoughts and points you want to make, and I just want you to know that’s all very irrelevant. Abortion is a woman’s right. And I know acknowledging that is hard for some of you, because that would mean you’d also have to acknowledge that women are naturally equipped to do the most powerful thing in the world: give life. While you guys are naturally equipped to do what? Lift suitcases into the overhead compartment?
She added, “If women embrace the fact that they control life, that makes it a lot harder for men to control women. Of course men are uncomfortable with that. They won’t even let us control a little bit of Star Wars.”

Again, Wolf ignores science. Women give birth, which is a powerful and amazing thing. But they do not control life, or give life on their own. Fertilization requires a man’s participation. Women and men create life together, and it’s a sad statement on the strength of her views that she has to demean an entire class of people — men — in order to argue them.

4. The legality and availability of abortion hasn’t helped women.

In addition to trashing men as uniformly useless and misogynist, she argued that abortion should be common. “Abortion shouldn’t be a luxury,” she said. “It shouldn’t be the new, ‘I summer in Montauk.’ It should be on the dollar menu at McDonald’s!” She concluded by saying, “Women, don’t forget: you have the power to give life! And men will try to control that. Don’t let them! God bless abortions and God bless America!”

But the choice to advance abortion comes at the expense of women — something the founding feminists understood. They didn’t want women to have to choose between their children and their education, careers, or futures. They wanted more support, better resources, a family-friendly culture — barriers against coercing women into abortions. Legalizing abortion addressed none of these issues; it allowed them to flourish. Women still have difficulties attending school or building careers while pregnant or parenting, in part because the cultural mindset is that there’s no need to give women better support, because abortion is available. (Read more.)

Philanthropy Gone Wrong

From The Federalist:
Earlier this year, a team of reporters from the Wall Street Journal published a story detailing the treatment of ten of the women who escaped or were rescued from Boko Haram then came to the United States to attend school. With its cast of characters including fervent and deluded nonprofit leaders, a scheming attorney, and a colorful congresswoman, the story feels like one Tom Wolfe might have written, if he forgot to include humor.

A cautionary tale of disgraceful, predatory philanthropy unfolds. After all the goodwill that was marshalled, the awareness that was raised, and the money that was collected, the end result of #Bringbackourgirls for these women was continued harassment and exploitation, not liberation.

 After their escape from Boko Haram, these ten women immediately sought to continue their education, enrolling in special scholarships offered at the American University of Nigeria, in the northeastern state of Adamawa. Soon after they began school in the fall of 2014, the human-rights lawyer and activist Emmanuel Ogebe, a Nigerian national influential in Washington, descended on the campus. Ogebe demanded the school’s administrators allow him to bring a group of women from Chibok to weekend meetings in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja. (Read more.)

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

"In Society"

From Blouin Art Info:
The Louvre in Paris is showcasing its glorious collection of European pastels from the 17th and 18th centuries in its exhibition titled “In Society.” The works on display illuminate the genius of celebrated artists Rosalba Carriera, Maurice Quentin de La Tour, Jean-Baptiste Simeon Chardin, Jean-Baptiste Perronneau, Jean-Etienne Liotard, Jean-Marc Nattier and Elisabeth Louise Vigee Le Brun. The exhibition also shows works by some of the lesser known artists of the time. Mostly featuring artists of the Enlightenment society, the exhibits at “In Society” dates from the time of Louis XV and Louis XVI. The works can be displayed for only short periods because of its extreme fragility.

“These pastels illustrate the genius of the artists who produced them as artworks in their own right rather than preparatory studies enhanced with color. Many of them still have their original frame, and sometimes their original glass,” writes the Louvre. “The exhibition takes a new look at masterpieces such as Maurice Quentin de La Tour’s Portrait of the Marquise de Pompadour, and features new acquisitions such as Simon Bernard Lenoir’s portrait of the actor Lekain. It is also an opportunity to compare these works by French artists with others by eminent international pastel artists such as Rosalba Carriera in Venice, Jean-Etienne Liotard in Geneva and John Russell in London.”

The exhibition presents over 120 pastels from the Louvre’s collection, mostly dating from the 18th century ― the golden age of pastel ― together with works that may have been looted during WWII and was entrusted to the Louvre in 1949. The show is organized to celebrate the publication of curator Xavier Salmon’s inventory of the museum’s extraordinary collection of pastels that amount to a staggering number of 160 works. (Read more.)

Karl Marx: Hate and Totalitarianism

From Life Site:
The thought of Karl Marx, a German political agitator whose theory of “scientific socialism” wreaked havoc on the world for most of the 20th century, would seem to have been consigned to the ash heap of history following the fall of the Eastern Bloc communist regimes from 1989 to 1991. After decades of mass murder claiming tens of millions of victims, as well as the totalitarian oppression of hundreds of millions more, the reputation of Marxism had been destroyed almost completely, seemingly assuring its final demise.

However, a resurgence of interest in Marx’s thought has been ongoing since 2008, when the global economic crisis led many to question the viability of the capitalist system, always the main object of Marxist criticism. Now the 200th anniversary of the birth of Marx (on May 5th) is being hailed openly by mainstream thinkers and even Catholic clergy as a cause for respectful commemoration, if not outright celebration.

The New York Times published an open endorsement of Marx’s thought, “Happy Birthday, Karl Marx. You Were Right!” in which a philosophy professor praises Marx’s “ruthless criticism of all that exists,” and congratulates activists for applying Marxist class theory to race and gender. Britain’s left-wing Guardian newspaper also praised Marx in a recent article commemorating his birthday, but was more circumspect in its tone, claiming that he had prophesied the excesses of modern capitalism, but regarding his solution for “how to get out of it” as “less helpful.”

Official government commemorations of Marx’s birthday have also contributed to the celebratory atmosphere. The German government issued a commemorative postage stamp with an image of Marx on a red background. The government of China, which is still officially Marxist while actually capitalist, has paid for the erection of a statue of Marx in his hometown of Trier, Germany. Chinese President Xi Jinping, who has been pushing for a revival of Marxism in China to shore up his increasingly dictatorial regime, gave a speech in April beneath a portrait of the Communist saint, praising Karl Marx as “the greatest thinker of modern times,” adding, “We must continuously improve the ability to use Marxism to analyze and solve practical problems.”

Amazingly, even highly-ranked Catholic clerics, such as Cardinal Reinhard Marx, are openly praising the communist’s writings as “fascinating,” opining that the Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto has “an energy” and “a great language” which “quite impressed” him. Cardinal Marx is close to Pope Francis, who has made both positive and negative statements about Marxism, contributing to an atmosphere of ambiguity on the topic. (Read more.)

The Last Hermit of Ireland

From Lens in Focus: 
Fr. David was born in Wales and raised in the Baptist Church. In his mid teens he spent most of his life trying to convert Catholics until he happened to stumble into his local Catholic Church one day in the late 60's. He was immediately blown away by the Latin chants, the billowing incense and the sense of the mystical that encompassed the entire liturgy.

Shortly after his conversion, although he was too young to enter the monastic life, they bent the rules in his favor. With his parents blessing he went to be a Monk in France where he spent most of his life before moving around the monasteries of Europe, ending up in Italy and finally arriving in the village of Duleek, Ireland, where he now resides indefinitely. (Read more.)

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Severed Heads During the French Revolution

From Geri Walton, via History's Untold Treasures:
Suppose you see a severed head dripping blood on a pike. What do you feel? Revulsion? Terror? Severed heads were often a common image associated with the French Revolution. Why were they so prevalent and how prevalent were they?

One of the first stories related to severed heads occurred two days before the storming of the Bastille on 12 July 1789. Madame Tussaud reported that protestors arrived knocking on the door of Philippe Mathé Curtius, her uncle and owner of a wax museum called the Salon de Cire. The museum was home to numerous wax figures that included a display of the French royal family dining or rather “exhibited in a ceremony called Grand Couvert [where] “the good  honest people from the country, after visiting the menageries to see the lions, tigers, and monkeys … hastened to the palace to see the king and queen take their soup.”[1]

According to Madame Tussaud, the protestors wanted two wax heads to carry in protest march. One was the Duke d’Orléans and the other was Louis XVI’s popular finance minister Jacques Necker, whom Louis XVI had dismissed. The protestors also wanted a full-size figure of the king, but Curtius refused stating that it would fall apart if carried, and, so, the protestors settled for the heads of d’Orléans and Necker.

After the protestors got the heads, they placed them on pikes, held them aloft, and marched through Parisian streets beating drums. A journalist and dramatist named Louis-Abel, Beffroy de Reigny was informed about the protests and left the safety of his home to investigate. When he reached the Boulevard du Temple, he reported:
“There I saw about five or six thousand men marching fairly fast and without any order, some of them armed, others with sabers, spears, and pitchforks. They triumphantly carried the wax busts of the Duc d’Orléans and of M. Necker, whom they had asked of M. Curtius.”[2]
An engraving of the event soon surfaced. On 12 July, after journalist and politician Camille Desmoulins learned that Necker had been dismissed, he leapt onto a table and delivered an impassioned speech, calling the people to arms. Soon after the above engraving circulated showing Desmoulins rallying the protestors and them carrying the wax heads of Necker and the Duke. (Read more.)

Dear Cardinal Dolan

From Life Site:
Your Eminence, when it comes to abortion, and the formal, obstinate, and manifest support of abortion, we’re talking about an “unspeakable crime” that “poison[s] human society” [LG 51, 27]. And it is that objective evil which you combat with every breath, a battle in which your brother bishops have made you their leader.

Your Excellency, your fellow prelates elected you to lead them – and us – in the battle to save the lives of unborn children. But many of them seem to spend most of their time advocating their prudential agenda on issues such as health care, taxes, welfare, the weather, and amnesty for illegal aliens. Unfortunately, many of them employ truly shocking epithets to attack those among the faithful laity who disagree with those prudential views.

Yet, as you helpfully clarified for Congressman Ryan, all of these are issues on which good Catholics – and good citizens – can and do disagree.

Your Eminence, you are the USCCB’s spokesman and designated leader on pro-life issues. You are uniquely qualified to urge your brother bishops to focus on the truly scandalous and objective evil of abortion that demands their attention and action. Specifically, you can encourage them to apply the magisterial teaching of the Church consistent with the binding Church law contained in Canon 915.

This clarion call will provide all of our shepherds the opportunity to raise high the standard of truth which has, alas, been hidden for decades. As you told the Wall Street Journal in 2012, our shepherds have had “laryngitis” on Humanae Vitae since “the mid- and late '60s.”

Isn’t fifty years of silence enough, Your Eminence? (Read more.)

New Citizens

I admire the people who made sacrifices to become citizens LEGALLY just like my grandmother Magdalena. They respect our country and its laws. From Fox News:
At a naturalization ceremony in New Hampshire, 102 people hailing from 48 different countries became citizens before an audience that included the state’s two senators, Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan, and Gov. Chris Sununu. In New York, Karina Borbon, who arrived in the U.S. from the Dominican Republic ten years ago, explained how it felt to realize her dream. “I am so excited…It was a long journey but finally, I did it,” Borbon, 32, told the New York Daily News. “Now I have become a part of the nation. I want to help my community and help the people become citizens, too.” (Read more.)

Monday, July 9, 2018

Rubies of Catherine II

From East of the Sun, West of the Moon. Share

A Manchurian Candidate

From The Washington Times:
After returning from a tour of some of the war zones in the Middle East — which ended with the Free Iran Gathering 2018 in Paris — I am struck by the realization that America really did have a Manchurian Candidate in The White House for eight years. If you look at the evidence, there really is no other conclusion. The calamitous consequences of the Obama presidency will be felt for the foreseeable future.

In the short year and a half that President Trump has been in office, he has put in place policy that has mitigated the damage that President Obama inflicted on our national security and on our allies. The speed with which Trump has been able to turn things around points to the diabolical depths the Obama administration went to in order to undermine our national strength and way of life. All Trump had to do was stop doing things that hurt America; America could then take care of itself. The results are plain as day. However, it will take decades for the Obama damage to be completely undone. The deviousness of the Obama sedition runs deep.

Think about it for a moment. If you wanted peace in the Middle East, why would you throw away the trillions of dollars spent, as well as the lives of thousands of American souls, by irresponsibly pulling out ALL American troops from Iraq? No matter your thoughts on starting the war, pulling out was an irresponsible thing to do. We still have troops in Germany, Korea and Japan, for God’s sake. Why? For stability, that’s why. As Colin Powell said, we broke it, now we own it. It was a given that instability would follow the force withdrawal. When you combine this act with the reality that Obama never really did try to defeat the Islamic State, what conclusion can you come up with? Trump defeated them in a few months. The conclusion is obvious: Obama really didn’t want to destroy them.
Why did Obama and Hillary take down Moammar Gadhafi, who had already given up his nuclear weapons? Was it to destabilize Libya, where ISIS could gain another foothold? Why did Obama help install the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt? What was the agenda behind the so-called Arab Spring? (Read more.)

Don John Unmasks the Prince of Orange

From Nobility:
Faithful to the policy of peace which had been enjoined on him, D. John wished to confer with Orange, and sent the Duke of Arschot to tell him that the Provinces of Holland and Zeeland were the only two which had not signed the “Perpetual Edict,” and as they were under his command D. John confided this task to him. Orange then threw off that mask, which had gained for him the surname of “Silent,” and with which he had covered his ambitions and mischievous designs, and answered Arschot that Holland and Zeeland would never sign the “Perpetual Edict,” as both these provinces were Calvinistic and neither would promise to keep the Roman faith, and taking off his hat and showing his bald head, he said to the Duke, with a smile, “You see my head is bald (calva)! Then know that it is not more so than my heart.” This play upon words signified that the traitor meant he was also a Calvinist, and his apostasy being now known, all hopes of agreement were at an end. (Read more.)

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Our Gaelic Christian Heritage (Part 1)

Cattle Raid of Cooley
From The Catholic Heritage Association of Ireland:
The various Annals of the Gaelic Race attest to the historic devotion of the Irish to Christ. However, if it is an Irish claim worthy of mention it should be an extraordinary one. Such a claim is the claim made for Conor Mac Nessa, King of Ulster about the time of Our Lord and, incidentally, associated with the famous Cattle Raid of Cooley. His death is recounted in the Book of Leinster and referred to in O'Curry's, Lectures on the Manuscript Materials of Ancient Irish History

King Conor witnessed, it was said...the Earth shaken and darkened at the death of Our Lord upon Calvary. He understood through the prism of Natural Religion from Bacrach, his Druid, its true significance. At the cost of his own life, [he] struggled to defend the God-Man.

That a certain knowledge of the supernatural order might also be given to mere pagans is a strange idea but not an impossible one. The Oracle at Delphi and even Virgil in his Eclogues, had some intimation of the Incarnation. Teste David cum Sybilla, as the Dies Irae puts it. That Mankind, who had once walked in the Garden with God and who had been promised a Redeemer as they were expelled, might retain some notion of the Truth is not inconceivable.
The poem of T.D. Sullivan recounts the story as follows:

The Death of King Conor Mac Nessa
The princes, the chieftains, the nobles, who met, to consult at his board,
Whispered low when their talk was of combats, and wielding the spear and the sword:
The bards from their harps feared to waken the full-pealing sweetness of song,
To give homage to valor or beauty, or praise to the wise and the strong;
The flash of no joy-giving story made cheers or gay laughter resound,
Amid silence constrained and unwonted the seldom-filled wine-cup went round;
And, sadder to all who remembered the glories and joys that had been,
The heart-swaying presence of woman not once shed its light on the scene.
 (Read more.)
King Conor with his nobles and chieftains
Queen Maeve
 More HERE. Share

Anti-Trumpers Need to Get Out More

Yep. From Townhall:
It’s an important lesson. With the election of Donald Trump many liberals have dumped parents, siblings, friends and colleagues for the sole reason that they supported Trump. It’s horrible and hurtful and unfair. It’s really deplorable. And the dumping didn’t happen after a sober, civil, considered conversation or debate. It’s a summary judgement. I recently met a lovely man in Northern California, whose grown children haven't spoken to him in over a year. He writes, sends messages of love and concern and his adult daughters won’t write back. They didn't even have a fight, they just stopped talking to him. He is heartbroken. 

It’s happened to me. I wasn’t even a full-on Trump supporter when an Italian friend who I had shared an apartment with 30 years ago sent me a message out of the blue telling me we were done, she couldn't be friends with me anymore because of Trump. Apparently I had posted something on Facebook that was not sufficiently anti-Trump and she didn’t want a discussion, she was done. She's not the only one. (Read more.)

Jordan Peterson Tackles Cain and Abel

From Life Site:
In his safe space tilling the land near home, Cain does not develop self-reliance or skill in violent means of protection. "Abel is, by all appearances, dancing his way through life," writes Peterson. "Worse of all, he's genuinely a good person. Everyone knows it. He deserves his good fortune. All the more reason to envy and hate him." Cain's envy intensifies.

"In the course of time, Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the ground, and Abel brought of the firstlings of his flock and of their fat portions" (Genesis 4:4). Some modern readers might dismiss the idea of sacrifice as a superstitious practice of primitive savages, but Peterson offers a radically different interpretation. Our own suffering is undeniable, so what can we do about it? "If you want to make things better in the future," writes Peterson, "then you make sacrifices in the present." Human beings project their existence into the future, and so can work now to make their futures better. "It's our knowledge of the possibility of tragedy and suffering in the future that motivates us to sacrifice in the present, so that we can reduce the unnecessary anxiety, uncertainty, and pain that awaits us." Far from exhibiting primitive superstition, "the sacrifices that people were making to God were the dramatic precursors to the psychological idea of sacrifice that we all hold as civilized people in the modern world."

To sacrifice is human, and to sacrifice for the sake of the greater good is to act with human wisdom. "Modern people have by no means stopped making sacrifices to God, regardless of what they think," writes Peterson. "Our very belief that hard work and discipline will bring success is a precise but abstracted and refined restatement of the idea that God will shower his grace on the individual who makes the right offering."

"And the Lord had regard for Abel and his offering, but for Cain and his offering he had no regard" (Genesis 4:5). Like Augustine in the City of God, Peterson notes that it is unspecified why God prefers Abel's sacrifice. This nondisclosure in the story universalizes the message. We often do not know the reason why our sacrifices fail. We can set ort minds to achieve some end, strive mightily in employing all available means at great cost, and come out with nothing but ashes. (Read more.)

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Madame de Lamballe's House in Passy

From Geri Walton:
In the mid 1770s, Passy was about three miles outside Paris. It drew wealthy people, because of its bucolic setting. Located on the hillside of the Seine’s right bank, Passy also had a renowned mineral spring owned by Passy’s first mayor, Louis-Guillaume Le Veillard. The spring purportedly had healing waters described as “copious blue.” Moreover, its location made Passy the perfect distance between Versailles and Paris. That was part of the reason that the United States’ first Ambassador to France, Benjamin Franklin, called it home for the nine years—1776-1785, and why the Princesse de Lamballe purchased a home in Passy in February of 1783.

Passy drew other people. Besides Princesse de Lamballe, numerous other well-known people resided there in the 1700s. Among them was Alexandre Le Riche de La Poupelinière, a wealthy fermier général. He lived there in the mid 1700s and threw lavish suppers that included the best operatic and dancing entertainment. The Irish revolutionary who served France in the 1700s, Charles Edward Jennings de Kilmaine, also moved to Passy with his wife before they were imprisoned during the Reign of Terror. Lastly, the well-known Italian composer Niccolò Piccinni became a resident and died at his Passy home in May of 1800.  (Read more.)

Vilifying The Founders

From The Federalist:
A recent documentary asked college students: “What’s the first thing that comes to mind when I say ‘George Washington’?” One student’s response: “him owning slaves.” Another believed that Washington was just “not as important” today. If this is what students think, maybe we need to study the Founders and the American Revolution more.


The creation story of the nation has diversified tremendously in recent decades. Still, at a June meeting of early American historians, the Founders’ writings were mocked as “ego documents” filled with lies, and the unity of Revolutionary ideology was ridiculed as “bullsh-t.”

The public cares about the Founders, and their ideals are accessible to all, as the success of “Hamilton” has proven. American liberty, freedom, and equality should transcend their creators’ flaws. Let’s use the term “Founders” rather than “Founding Fathers” to symbolize that people of different races and sexes helped to found the nation. But including other figures shouldn’t be at the expense of Washington, Jefferson, or Franklin. (Read more.)

Of Nursery Rhymes, Castles and the Cross

History and legends of Colchester. From Regina Jeffers:
Local legend places Colchester as the seat of  King Cole (or Coel) of the rhyme Old King Cole, a legendary ancient king of Britain. In folk etymology the name Colchester was thought of as meaning Cole’s Castle, though this theory does not have academic support. In the legend Helena, the daughter of Cole, married the Roman senator Constantius Chlorus, who had been sent by Rome as an ambassador and was named as Cole’s successor. Helena’s son became Emperor Constantine I. Helena was canonised as  Saint Helena of Constantinople and is credited with finding the true cross and the remains of the Magi.  She is now the patron saint of Colchester. This is recognised in the emblem of Colchester: a cross and three crowns. The Mayor’s medallion contains a Byzantine style icon of Saint Helena. A local secondary school – St Helena’s – is named after her, and her statue is atop the town hall, although local legend is that it was originally a statue of Blessed Virgin Mary which was later fitted with a cross.

Colchester is also the most widely credited source of the rhyme Humpty Dumpty. During the siege of Colchester in the Civil War, a Royalist sniper known as One-Eyed Thompson sat in the belfry of the church of St Mary-at-the-Walls (Humpty Dumpty sat on the wall) and was given the nickname Humpty Dumpty, most likely because of his size, Humpty Dumpty being a common insult for the overweight. Thompson was shot down (Humpty Dumpty had a great fall) and, shortly after, the town was lost to the Parliamentarians (all the king’s horses and all the king’s men / couldn’t put Humpty together again.) Another version says that Humpty Dumpty was a cannon on the top of the church. The church of St Mary-at-the-Walls still retains its Norman tower until the top few feet, which are a Georgian repair. (Read more.)

Friday, July 6, 2018

"Petit Trianon and Marie-Antoinette: Representation, Interpretation, Perception"

Here is the thesis "Petit Trianon and Marie-Antoinette: Representation, Interpretation, Perception" by Dr. Denise Maior-Barron for the University of Plymouth (U.K) in which I have the honor of being mentioned. Denise wrote to me years ago with questions concerning Marie-Antoinette and we had a wonderful exchange of ideas. She has a book coming out this month, HERE. Her paper is a must-read for any serious student of the French Revolution and especially of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette. To quote:
The thesis examines Petit Trianon and Marie Antoinette in the context of four major narratives that are relevant to the contemporary heritage interpretation of the Estate of Marie-Antoinette as well as its perception by the majority of its visitors. Fieldwork research has detected these to be the historical, cinematic, architectural and heritage narratives of Petit Trianon and Marie Antoinette. The Estate is part of the Château de Versailles UNESCO heritage site, and has recently been subjected to a restoration and renaming as the Estate of Marie-Antoinette, designed to strengthen its identity as home to the last Queen of France.


UNESCO inscribed the heritage site of the Palace of Versailles in 1979. The second most visited museum in the world after the Louvre (UNWTO 2013 Report), Versailles remains a symbol of the French Monarchy, mainly represented by two historical characters: Louis XIV or the Sun King, the founder of the Royal Court of Versailles since the end of the 17th century, and Marie-Antoinette, the last Queen of France who reigned at the end of the 18th century. Despite the fact that both figures belong to the Ancien Régime, the first is generally regarded in a positive light, whereas the latter is renowned as iniquitous. This ubiquitous cliché, deeply rooted in French collective memory, was the initial instigator to the present analysis which attempts to dispel many myths surrounding this  perception, by unpacking the narrative of Petit Trianon, the residence identified as the home par excellence to Marie Antoinette.

The controversy surrounding the historical character of the last Queen of France provided motivation for the research project. To fulfill the first aim of the analysis (see A1) - the thesis needs to analyse the representations of Marie-Antoinette (O1). In order to achieve this on a practical level, all collected data are filtered via assessment, in the final thesis chapters (Chapters 7, 8), against the impact of each of the four investigated narratives on the majority of visitors at Petit Trianon (O2), along with the emergent images of Marie Antoinette resulting in the commodification of this historical figure. The results of the assessment establish the ranked prevalence of these main narratives within the perception of the majority of visitors at Petit Trianon, enabling not only the detection of the range of contemporary images associated with Marie Antoinette (A1) but also an explanation for the existence of these images, which supports the second aim of the thesis and its objectives (see A2; O3; O4). (Read more.)

What a Difference a Week Makes

From The American Spectator:
At the beginning of last week the left was gathering steam. Their sudden discovery of family life, of the inhumanity of breaking up Latino families at the Texas border, of denying Latino children their sacred right to sit in a cell with their law-breaking parents, all seemed a sure winner for Democrats in this year’s forthcoming elections. Then too the Democrats discovered what they thought were vote-getting possibilities when the celebrated Red Hen restaurant denied service to Sarah Sanders, the President’s mouthpiece — forget about how Democrats have for years been very approving of the penalizing of bakers for refusing to serve wedding cakes to homosexual clients. The early part of last week was a promising time for the party of the jackass.

Then came, July 2. The lefties had had time to think about what had taken place during the last part of last week. The Supreme Court decided that in California it was unconstitutional to force pro-life groups to distribute pro-abortion information on their premises. The Court further ruled that unions could not force non-union members to pay union fees, which by the way were then passed on to the Democratic Party. What is more, the Court decided that President Trump’s travel ban was constitutional. In the case of the first two decisions the Court decided in favor of the First Amendment. To which Justice Elena Kagan replied the Court had been “weaponizing the First Amendment.” The Court’s majority made up of five Republicans might have retorted that all the Court was doing was enforcing the First Amendment against leftist encroachments, encroachments that, in the cases of the anti-abortion advocates and the bakers, had become flagrant.

To cap all these signs of freedom’s rebirth in the Great Republic came the charnel news on Wednesday from Justice Anthony Kennedy’s office. He was going to rest his 81-year-old bones. He was retiring. Panic has struck the left-wing community. President Trump was free to nominate a conservative. Well, what have I been telling the left-wing brethren and — I guess we can say — sisteren? For years I have been arguing that as they go further and further left with their projects they enlarge the nation’s conservative and independent vote. That is precisely what has happened. America is not ready for a left-wing dictatorship. We have seen Cuba and Venezuela and we do not like what we see.

Yet the left is not responding as their liberal ancestors once responded. They are not moving to the center. They are becoming more ideological. They are adopting socialism. Yes, in the middle of the President ‘s economic revival the left is adopting that economic system that is even being shed by the Europeans. Their theoretician, the Hollywood filmmaker Michael Moore, on HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher, called out his storm troopers over the weekend. He will bring “a million” of them up to the U.S. Capitol and surround the building to keep Republicans from voting on Justice Kennedy’s replacement. And Senator Kamala D. Harris has called for street protests like the street protests that decorated some 700 cities last weekend. How winning a demonstration was that! (Read more.)
The case for Amy Coney Barrett. From First Things:
Selecting Kennedy’s replacement could turn out to be one of the current administration’s most consequential tasks. A Court that seemed likely, after Justice Antonin Scalia’s death in 2016, to shift in a “liberal” direction could well embrace a more “conservative” approach, not only to statutory and constitutional interpretation, but also with respect to its own role in our government, our policies, and our culture.

Because candidate Trump compiled and released a list of his potential nominees to the Court, and because as president he not only chose Scalia’s replacement from that list but has affirmed that Kennedy’s replacement will come from it as well, journalists and citizens alike feel confident about the names, resumes, and records of the leading contenders. One jurist who is consistently mentioned by all the mentioners is my friend and longtime colleague, Judge Amy Coney Barrett.

I met Barrett more than twenty years ago, when she came to Washington, D.C. after graduating with highest honors from Notre Dame Law School to clerk for one of the country’s most distinguished federal judges, Laurence Silberman of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. During the 1998-99 term of the Supreme Court, Barrett and my wife, Nicole Stelle Garnett, clerked together—the former for Scalia and the latter for Justice Clarence Thomas. (As I heard several times from other Justices’ clerks that year, Barrett was widely recognized as—after Garnett, of course!—one of the most talented and intelligent clerks in the building.) After her clerkship, I helped recruit Barrett to the small but heavy-hitting Washington, D.C. law firm where I worked, and a few years later I was delighted to welcome her as a faculty colleague at my adopted home and her alma mater.

Judge Barrett is my colleague, friend, and neighbor. She is the godmother to one of my daughters, and we have children who have been friends since birth. I know her scholarly and professional work well; I have observed her speak and teach; I am familiar with her generosity in her academic, local, and parish communities. Barrett is careful, conscientious, civil, and charitable, and blessed with an unusual combination of decency, grace under pressure, kindness, rigor, and judgment. If nominated and confirmed, she would be an outstanding justice, committed to the rule of law and to the faithful performance of her judicial duty. (Read more.)
More HERE and HERE. Share

The Harsh Reality of Pioneer Food

From Atlas Obscura:
There is perhaps no better-known account of American pioneer life than the Little House series of children’s books by Laura Ingalls Wilder, which was subsequently adapted for the stage and big screen. Over the course of nine books, set between 1870 and 1894, Wilder recounts a fictionalized version of her childhood and adolescence as the Ingalls family moves west, variously living in Wisconsin, Kansas, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Missouri.

Nowadays, however, the books are divisive. Many readers see them as a racist relic worth removing from the children’s literature canon altogether. In June 2018, in fact, the American Library Association excised Wilder’s name from the Children’s Literature Legacy Award book prize due to these concerns. Yet there are still those who love the books, celebrating them in memoirs, blogs and listicles alike—often with a particular focus on the novels’ food.

Mealtime scenes are some of the most memorable in the books, laid out meticulously in calm, deliberate prose. A salted pig’s tail, sizzling over the flames, is so good that the main character, Laura, scarcely minds that she’s burnt her finger. Hard candy, made with boiled molasses and sugar, is made by drizzling the dark syrup “in little streams” onto “clean, white snow from outdoors.” A candy heart, printed with red letters, is “wrapped carefully in her handkerchief until [Laura] got home and could put it away to keep always. It was too pretty to eat.” (Read more.)

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Imperial Crown of the Holy Roman Empire

 The crown of the Holy Roman Empire, along with regalia, jewels and relics, kept at the Kaiserliche Schatzkammer at the Hofburg in Vienna. More HERE.


Why Good Fences Make Good Neighbors

From TFP:
In the present debate about the border, there is something of Frost’s dilemma. A good part of the squabble about a border wall is not about the size and shape of an eventual barrier to bar those entering illegally. The liberal rage against the wall has much to do with the nature of boundaries. Indeed, walls, borders and fences are manifestations of restraint. They indicate that there are differences between things on one side and the other. Limits affirm that some things are better left separate to keep the peace. Boundaries secure the property of individuals against those who have none. They protect the sovereignty of nations against those who might enter without permission or do them harm. Thus, walls are not loved, because walls say “no.” Many mistakenly believe that any saying of “no” is hurtful and causes people to suffer. And so, radicals claim, fences must be eliminated; they are not inclusive. The earth belongs to everyone. Walls must come crashing down. (Read more.)

Women and Chivalry

From The Daily Wire:
According to a new study from University of Kent and Iowa State University scientists, which was published on Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, women overwhelmingly preferred chivalrous men who viewed women as needing protecting. Researchers Pelin Gul and Tom Kupfer classify this apparently "patronizing" behavior as "benevolent sexism" (BS), or well-meaning sexism. The researchers suggest that women are hard-wired to overlook the "harmful consequences" of BS, "because BS mates are perceived as willing to invest (protect, provide, and commit)," reads the study's abstract. Gul and Kupfer chalk this up to natural selection, a symptom of which women have yet to shake.

As noted by The Daily Mail, the research was collected from five study groups full of women, with the largest group comprising of 233 women, and the smallest with 104. The females were asked to view scenarios of interactions from men, which "included men who were kind but in what is considered a sexist way, and men who treated the women as equals and didn't offer any special treatment." They were then asked to rate the men's "warmth and attractiveness, and how willing they thought they would be to provide for, protect or commit to them." They also divulged their own degree of their feminist leanings, outlining how "patronizing" or "undermining" they found the behavior.

"Women find benevolent sexist [BS] men attractive, not because they are ignorant of the harmful effects, but despite being aware of them," the scientists found. "This suggests that the desirable aspects of BS attitudes and behaviors are sufficient to overcome the perceived negative effects." (Read more.)