Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Small Town to arrest President Bush? - UPDATE

Well, here it is. The ongoing town's struggle to eliminate it's tourism...

Vermont anti-Bush petition lambasted

We've Been Smurf'd ! - - Quirky News Items

Okay, I don't know about you, but I need a break from all these election polls, analyst, commentators, campaign junk mail etc.....

... so I searched the net for some quirky news items to break the chain... if only momentarily.

Hundreds of Croatians painted themselves blue and put on silly hats to beat a world record - only to find they were too late.

This next story brings to mind only one word: EEEWWWWWWW! (if that's a word)

Human Tongue in the Risotto!

A human tongue has been served up in a hospital canteen's chicken risotto — and bosses reckon it was accidentally dropped into the food by a doctor.

Slovenian officials are investigating after a doctor complained about a strange piece of meat on his plate. revealed the doctor insisted it was not chicken and after some intense bickering it was sent away for tests — and found to be part of a human tongue.

Inspectors have closed the canteen in Izola, southern Slovenia, to review hygiene standards.
Bosses believe a doctor could have unwittingly dropped the tongue in the food after treating a patient.

A hospital spokesman insisted: "I can say clearly that we have never used patients' parts in any of our dishes."

like I said, "EEEEEEEEWWWW"

...want more?

Here's the ultimate website for "Strange, Bizarre, weird and wacky news items (beware, I haven't review all the content of this site.)

Nothing like a good Read....or a good Listen

Here's what I'm reading (listening to) presently....

Just started this one...

I have the unabridged CD set I've been listening to on my commute to and from work...about 1 1/2 hrs each way.

You can view his latest debate with Michael Shermer HERE
There are 4 parts, this link is to the last part. You can find the other parts at the same link.

Jesus of Nazareth - Pope Benedict XVI

I've been switching between the this CD set and the D'Souza CD set. I also have both on my iPod.

Reading this one just fun...

This one I found on the internet. You can download it. I've also purchased it on . ...for those rare, out of print, hard to find books. This one is a jewel.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Did Michelangelo really Paint the Sistine Chapel?

Read this this morning:

It's anniversary time. The genesis of the Greatest Work of Art Ever, Anywhere – so popular that the curators of the Vatican Museums have made seeing it insanely complicated and expensive in an effort to reduce the crowds – began 500 years ago this spring, when Pope Julius II persuaded a reluctant Michelangelo Buonarroti to take on the painting of the Sistine Chapel ceiling. But even before the festivities can properly begin, they have been overshadowed by the return of an ancient controversy.
In contrast to other great Renaissance figures such as Shakespeare, of whose lives we know practically nothing for certain, Michelangelo was intimately chronicled during his own lifetime – in dozens of letters he wrote to his beloved father and brothers, and in two biographies, one by Vasari. We know in vivid detail what the great artist was up to month by month, often day by day. His tortured relationship with the warrior pope who was his greatest patron emerges vividly from the chronicles of his age.
We can even picture him at work, thanks to a sketch he drew illustrating a humorous poem on the torment of painting the ceiling – head thrown back, bottom thrust out to give him support, "belly hanging like an empty sack,/ beard pointing at the ceiling... my face, from drips and droplets/patterned like a marble pavement..."
We can also readily imagine the speed at which he worked, slapping paint on to wet plaster, driving himself across the enormous surface to get it covered in time.
The critic Waldemar Januszczak, who had the chance to scrutinise the ceiling from close quarters from the top of a television scaffold, wrote: "I could see the bristles from his brushes caught in the paint, and the mucky thumbprints he'd left along the margins. The first thing that impressed me was his speed. Michelangelo worked at Schumacher pace. Adam's famous little penis was captured with a single brushstroke: a flick of the wrist, and the first man had his manhood."
But behind the rich, almost cinematic certainties that history has given us about the painting of the ceiling – concerning the people, the relationships, the materials, the time frame, the technology – lies an impenetrable area of shadow.

I remember visiting the History Museum in San Diego a couple of years ago when they had an exhibition of artifacts from the Vatican Achieves. These included some sketches of the great artist himself. Awesome exhibit.

Some day I'll make to Rome.

It was in any event an impossible commission, from the artist's most demanding, impossible patron. Raphael's painting of Pope Julius II as a hollow-eyed, white-bearded figure clutching a money bag in one hand and the arm of his throne in the other, fails to do justice to one of the most bellicose megalomaniacs ever to occupy St Peter's chair, which is saying a bit.

Julius was, writes the papal historian Eamon Duffy, "a very dubious Father of all the Faithful, for he had fathered three daughters... while a cardinal, and he was a ferocious and enthusiastic warrior, dressing in silver papal armour and leading his own troops through the breaches blown in the city walls of towns who resisted his authority."

He was, however, the greatest papal patron of the Renaissance, giving inspired commissions to Raphael, Bramante and Leonardo as well as to Michelangelo.

Michelangelo's relationship with the pope was tormented. The artist from Arezzo, who turned 33 in 1508, was already famous as the sculptor of David, completed in 1504, and recognised as the genius of the age. Julius summoned him to Rome and commanded him to create a preposterous thing – a vast sepulchre worthy of a Pharaoh more than a pope, which was to contain 40 life-size figures and would become the eighth wonder of the world.

Perhaps fortunately, this monstrous monument was never finished, but what the artist called "the tragedy of the Tomb" pursued him long after Julius's death and interment in 1513, with rows over lousy assistants, inadequate budgets and revisions of the contract. In 1506, after one nasty spat, Michelangelo bolted from Rome on horseback.

But Julius, for all his megalomania, had a clear view of Michelangelo's worth, and after the artist had been prevailed on to apologise, got him to execute a bronze statue of him – subsequently melted down into a cannon.

Then, even while the agonies of the tragic tomb continued to pile up, Julius threw another amazing job at Michelangelo. The walls of the Sistine Chapel, the private chapel of the papal household, were already adorned with works by 15th-century masters including Botticelli and Perugino. The ceiling was painted blue, dotted with gold stars. The chapel had long been in disuse because of a large crack in the ceiling. Now Julius wanted it to be drastically renovated, and commanded him to paint 12 large figures of the Apostles on the ceiling.

At first, Michelangelo was reluctant because, as he told the pope, painting "is not my profession". The discussions continued through March and April. Finally, in May the artist grudgingly agreed, writing stiffly on the receipt for the initial payment of 500 ducats, that he, a sculptor, had received 500 ducats for the painting in the Sistine Chapel.

Did he actually paint it? bet he did.

Additional links:

Pope Julius II-New Advent

Small Town to arrest President Bush?

Now this story takes us off the beaten path a bit.

Brattleboro residents will vote at town meeting on whether President George Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney should be indicted and arrested for war crimes, perjury or obstruction of justice if they ever step foot in Vermont.

The Brattleboro Select Board voted 3-2 Friday to put the controversial item on the Town Meeting Day warning.

According to Town Clerk Annette Cappy, organizers of the Bush-Cheney issue gathered enough signatures, and it was up to the Select Board whether Brattleboro voters would consider the issue in March.

Cappy said residents will get to vote on the matter by paper balloting March 4.

Kurt Daims, 54, of Brattleboro, the organizer of the petition drive, said Friday the debate to get the issue on the ballot was a good one. Opposition to the vote focused on whether the town had any power to endorse the matter.

Seems some folks of Brattleboro, Vermont in the good old U.S.A are actually discussing whether or not they will arrest President Bush and Vice President Cheney if they happen to wonder through their little town.


I looked up the place on the internet and from the pictures it looks like a very nice quaint town of 12,000+ . Picturesque, one of those small towns you think about getting away to.

Now I don't believe for one minute this is more than a small group of individuals pushing this absurd idea, but I get a little scared when I hear that the law enforcement of the town is for this petition.

Come on peoples!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Boston and Catholicism

A new book by Philip Lawler entitled "The Faithful Departed" describes the Catholic community in Boston from early times to its present state.

You can read the Introductory Chapter here: The Faithful Departed

It's sounds like a story not totally unique to Boston.

I'll have to read this one.

WCC +<><

Marijuana ...From a Vending Machine

Marijuana Vending Machine

Like buying a can of Coca Cola...wild cherry! So it has been described.

The first Marijuana (excuss me.. Cannabis) vending machine in the nation and for that matter the rest of the world for all I know. Wow, something for Los Angeles to be proud of.


Hey why not a vending machine for Viagra ... already in the planning stages so the video claims. If you're going that far, why not Zanax, Condoms, bullets, you name it.

Now so far this is only at one location in Los Angeles...and I'm not telling you where, but there are plans for other locations, which will encourage other types of products I'm sure. This location says that the distribution of this product is very controlled. You get finger printed, a special access card, and a guard will be present.

Oh, and you have to have a prescription. Which sounds to me like you can get for almost any ailment. The video sounds like getting the prescription is the least of your worries. And hey, if worry is what you do, you can probably get a prescription for that too.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

World Gloats Over USA Economic Woaws

I read this article yesterday and came away with a bad taste in my mouth.

So I read it again, hoping that it was just that tuna sandwich I had for lunch.

Nope, that bad taste in my mouth was still there. I attributed it to the content of the article which talked about the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland.
The picture of George Soros didn't help much either.
(Photo Thanks:Daniel Acker/Bloomberg News)

It appears that much of the hub-bub was about the U.S. economy and it's possible affects on the rest on the world. Okay expected.

But the overall tone, at least to me, seemed to be of salivating over the dilemma the U.S. economy is in. Sort of like, "It serves them right!" and "Yah, watch them squirm..."

Wow, with friends like that who needs enemies?

Tough times seem to be on the horizon for us on this side of the pond, but we shall overcome.

Just wish our Friends would show some support.

What Was Happening On The Day Of Your Birth?

Here's a cool site.

Just type in the year of your birth or any year for that matter, and find out what news events happen then.


Anything from who won the Academy Awards that year, who was President, what the world population was at that time. etc....

Check it out...

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Is McCain Pro Life?

I'm still undecided on whom I should support for the President. So I'm still gathering facts.

I think my list of who I'm definitely not going to vote for is longer than my list of possible candidates to vote for.

I know that voting Pro-Life is definitely at the top of my list. All the other very important issues are stacked after that.

I've been wondering how McCain's voting record is on Abortion and Stem Cell. Now I'm not claiming to be a McCain supporter... as I said I'm still gathering facts. But I'm finding out that McCain may not be as Pro-life as he claims to be ( any candidate?).

Anyways here's the info...

Vox Nova (vote for Stem Cell Research)

Fewer Abortions?....1.2million/yr is fewer?

So I'm reading through this article this morning; "Number of abortions lowest in decades" and I'm thinking "This is good news!". "Actually this is great news!"

The number of abortions being performed in the United States has dropped to 1.2 million a year - the lowest level since 1976, according to a new report.
more stories like this

But when I do some quick mental math: Let's see 1.2 Million abortions a year. That's 1,200,000.000 divided by 12 months in a year = 100,000 abortions in the nation a month. Then, 100,000 divided by 4 weeks in a month = 25,000 abortions a week (wow). Then 25,000 divided by 7 days in a week = approximately 3,571 abortions a day.

That's like a 9/11 event everyday.

Then the article goes on to say: At the same time, the long decline in the number of abortion providers appears to be stabilizing, at least in part because of the availability of the controversial abortion pill RU 486, the report found.

"It could be more women using contraception and not having as many unintended pregnancies. It could be more restrictions on abortions, making it more difficult for women to obtain abortion services. It could be a combination of these and other dynamics," said Rachel Jones of the Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive-health research organization publishing the report in the March issue of the journal Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health.

... Jones noted the introduction of the French abortion pill RU 486, now more commonly known as mifepristone. The drug, which was approved in 2000, allows women to terminate their pregnancies without the need for a surgical procedure.

So don't we think that any change in the recorded number of abortions could be that those who use this pill are not reporting the abortion? Along with the more usage of contraception, the availability in schools.... I have a hard time thinking this is really a reduction in abortions at all.

... Mmmmm

"We found that there were providers who previously didn't offer surgical abortions and are now only providing early medical abortions," Jones said. "If it wasn't for those providers, the number of providers would have declined by far more."

Please don't write this issue off as a non-election year issue. For the candidates, if you can't stand up for these innocent ones (babies) I don't think I can trust you to stand up for all the other important issues.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Catholic Dem. vs Catholic Rep. vs Catholic Libertarian

Three articles with individuals explaining their support for either the Democrat party, the Republican party or the Libertarian party. The give their arguments for and against the three political platforms as they see it.

I thought they were interesting views. All three given from the same Catholic website (

Take a read...

Why I'm a Democrat Catholic

Why I'm a Republican Catholic

Why I'm a Libertarian

Thursday, January 10, 2008

How Catholic is Their Voting?

Interesting report from on the voting record of Catholics in our House of Representatives and the Senate on issues of Catholic importance.

Catholic Congress Voting

New Catholic Radio...In San Francisco!

Exciting news!

New Catholic Radio in the San Francisco Area.
Immaculate Heart Radio.
Catholic Online website has a piece on it, how it was created and who was involved.
Their website:
Welcome to the front-lines KSFB-AM 1260.
WCC +<><

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

The Theology of Joy Behar - "The View"

(Photo: Thanks Google)
Joy is quickly becoming the new "Rosie".... speaking her mind... offending everyone.

Now she has entered the world of theology, letting everyone know why we don't have Saints today.

...I know...just bare with me...

...and this...

Behar mentioned the recently-revealed doubts Mother Teresa struggled with regarding her faith and contended that the Catholic Church’s standards for sainthood have changed due to medical advances.

"That’s why Mother Teresa had issues. Let’s not forget, she didn’t really believe 100 percent like those saints who were hearing voices. She didn’t hear voices," Behar said.
"So the church said ‘OK, she does good deeds. Let’s make her a saint.’
"In the old days it used to be you heard voices. You can’t do that anymore."

Makes one wonder why she gets away with kind of stuff. Do people actually believe what she says?

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Number 1 Person of the Year - Beckwith

Insightscoop points out this article in Inside the Vatican Magazine on the Number 1 perosn of the Year ....Dr. Francis Beckwith.

Read his story HERE magazine.
Here's his website:

ELECTIONS: Candidate Calculator

I don't know how accurate these things are but they are kind of fun and sometimes surprising...

Give it a try....

Vote Help Link:

A friend sent this one to me:

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Happy New Year

Happy New Year to all.

Lot's to look forward to this year. The obvious Election Year is officially here. I plan on posting some thoughts, especially since I live here on what has been called the "Left Coast"

I like to refer to it as the "Front Lines". I will lean more towards my Catholic beliefs in my election thoughts...feel free to chime in.

I'm definitely not a know-it-all. However, everyone should have an opinion and one should not be afraid to voice it.

Also, lot's happening in the Church and B16 is leading the way.

Let's see... Here in So Cal.... the first rains of the year should be showing up today or tomorrow. I'm not looking forward to my work commute, but the weekend is almost here.

I missed the Dead Sea Scroll exhibit down in San Diego. Wouldn't you know it, I had a week off from work during Christmas and most of it I was sicker than dog. I didn't get sick all year and the first break I end up at Urgent Care. At least I was able to get some rest.

This is year two for the West Coast Catholic blog... I'm looking forward to posting and hopefully many more 'Comments' from you.

WestCoastCatholic +<><

Hope everyone had a great Christmas and New Year. T