A short work week, but one filled with one or two significant events . . . one of which is not the increasing volatility of the stock market. People have yet to realize that the stock market is NOT a “leading economic indicator.” It’s not, strictly speaking, an economic indicator at all. It’s a lagging emotional indicator. It gives a good idea of the emotional state of the gamblers on Wall Street, and that’s about it. As for more significant events:
• Coalition for Capital Homesteading. Sometimes we get so caught up in new things that we don’t pay enough attention to what we already have. That about describes the website of the Coalition for Capital Homesteading. It has much of the same sort of material as the CESJ website but is not quite so overwhelming. Take, for instance, the page with the videos. There are a dozen or so videos, none of which are very long (you won’t get caught as easily watching them at the office . . . which, of course, you’re only doing on your lunch break, right?). Whenever you find the time, pay a visit and look it over.
|A secret and inconspicuous subversive organization?|
• Subversive Organization? No one at CESJ HQ is a member of the Knights of Columbus (and the majority are not even Catholic), but we were rather surprised to learn that the venerable K of C appears to be on some kind of unofficial list of subversive organizations. Evidently belonging to an organization that supports the principles taught by a major religious body, whose existence is protected under the United States Constitution disqualifies someone for a government position . . . which is unconstitutional, as it establishes a de facto religious test for office (Article VI, Clause 3). According to Eugene F. Rivers III, a Pentecostal minister writing in the Wall Street Journal (“Another Religious Test in the Senate,” 01/04/19, A-13), a number of Senators are insinuating that Brian Buescher of Omaha, Nebraska, is not qualified to sit on the bench as a federal judge because he is a member of the Knights of Columbus. The organization takes a stand on issues that opposes the views of the Senators, which the Senators claim disqualifies him. Both the Nazis and the Fascists did this in their judicial systems before World War II, getting rid of any judges who refused to toe the party line and convict people who had not broken any laws of going against popular feelings.
• One Country, Two Systems. Mainland China is reaching out to Taiwan and promising them virtual autonomy within Greater China, an arrangement not uncommon in Europe where, e.g., Sicily is an autonomous region within the Italian Republic. Unfortunately, the example the Chinese are using, the case of Hong Kong, might not be calming fears very well (“Xi’s Promise to Taiwan Sounds Like a Threat,” Wall Street Journal, 01/04/19, A-13)..
|Paris Commune: the fruits of socialism and modernism.|
• Research Discoveries. Every now and then we come across an unexpected “find” in our research. Only a couple of weeks ago we located half a dozen articles by Judge Peter S. Grosscup that had lain forgotten for over a century, the gist of which is that to save America, we need to have “re-people-ize” America’s corporations by having as many people as possible own them and make them subject to the same laws as everyone else. This week we seem to have discovered not only four uncatalogued articles by G.K. Chesterton (containing nothing spectacular, but still . . .) and an article from the Catholic World magazine of August 1871 describing important aspects of Catholic social teaching that clearly led into Pope Pius XI’s breakthrough in moral philosophy regarding a particular act of social justice! What will astound, even outrage many of today’s experts in Catholic social teaching is that the article is strongly opposed to socialism of all kinds, modernism, and New Age thought. Translated from an article that first appeared in La Civilta Cattolica, the article is unsigned (that being the policy of the Catholic World under its founder, Father Isaac Thomas Hecker), but we suspect on the basis of style that the translator was Father Augustine F. Hewit, while on the basis of content the original author may have been Father Matteo Liberatore.
|Pius IX: doing hard time on the Rock?|
• Surprising Facts Department. It turns out that before his election to the papacy, Pope Pius IX (Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti, 1792-1878, elected 1846) served as a soldier and was a jailbird. It seems that when as a young man he was sent on a mission to South America, he and the other priests in the group on board ship were a little too free in voicing their opinions of some of the more radical revolutionaries in Chile . . . some of whom, unbeknownst to the priests were among their fellow passengers. When they stopped in Spain, the Chileans reported them to the authorities out of spite, and they were detained in prison for a new days before the matter was straightened out. (Cecilia Ascher, “Pius IX in South America,” The Ladies Repository: A Monthly Periodical Devoted to Literature, Arts, and Religion, Vol. 6, No. 1, July 1870, 24-26.)
• Shop online and support CESJ’s work! Did you know that by making your purchases through the Amazon Smile program, Amazon will make a contribution to CESJ? Here’s how: First, go to Next, sign in to your Amazon account. (If you don’t have an account with Amazon, you can create one by clicking on the tiny little link below the “Sign in using our secure server” button.) Once you have signed into your account, you need to select CESJ as your charity — and you have to be careful to do it exactly this way: in the space provided for “Or select your own charitable organization” type “Center for Economic and Social Justice Arlington.” If you type anything else, you will either get no results or more than you want to sift through. Once you’ve typed (or copied and pasted) “Center for Economic and Social Justice Arlington” into the space provided, hit “Select” — and you will be taken to the Amazon shopping site, all ready to go..
• Blog Readership. We have had visitors from 20 different countries and 34 states and provinces in the United States and Canada to this blog over the past week. Most visitors are from the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, India and Canada. The most popular postings this past week in descending order were “News from the Network, Vol. 11, No. 52,” “The ‘Marketplace of Faith’?” “On Usury and Other Dishonest Profit, Part VII,” “Labor, Capital, and Alienation,” and “G.K. Chesterton v. Modernism and Socialism.”
Those are the happenings for this week, at least those that we know about. If you have an accomplishment that you think should be listed, send us a note about it at mgreaney [at] cesj [dot] org, and we’ll see that it gets into the next “issue.” If you have a short (250-400 word) comment on a specific posting, please enter your comments in the blog — do not send them to us to post for you. All comments are moderated, so we’ll see it before it goes up.