Tag Archives: ignorance

Less than a tithe

This is our neighborhood church. Built, I’m guessing, in the 1500s.

WE USUALLY don’t answer the doorbell because it’s often passing kids goofing around or someone selling something we don’t want. And it’s almost a two-block round trip from inside the house to the front gate and back. That more than anything.

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A Catholic spell

I come from country people who were never anything but Baptists or Methodists that I know of.

In spite of that, I was deposited in a Catholic school for kindergarten and First Grade in Albany, Georgia, about 10,000 years ago. My mother did it because it had the best reputation in town, education-wise.

My sister was sentenced there too. My sister had imagination, however, or maybe it was just childish ignorance. She came home one day and announced that she’d changed the Holy Water, freshened it up with stuff from the tap.

Neither the priest nor the nuns ever noticed, which tells me that Holy Water’s fame is overstated somewhat.

My mother, before enrolling me, made the nuns promise they wouldn’t try to turn me into a Catholic, and they did so promise because, one imagines, our money looked green.

However, one day I came home with the report that, after having misbehaved in some way, I was made to kneel on rice before a painting of the Virgin and beg forgiveness.

Mother took me out of the school at that point, and I left Catholicism forever if you don’t count that my second ex-wife is a recovering Catholic, and Mexico is full of Catholics.

My child bride does not seem to be a Catholic, but the environment rubs off. Her father was an atheist and her evil stepmother, after father died too young, became a Jehovah’s Witness, one of those pests at your front door.

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Speaking of doorbells

As I was saying, we rarely respond to the doorbell here at the Hacienda unless we are expecting someone.

But my child bride was toiling in her pastry workshop the other day when the doorbell rang — it rings both out there and here in the house — and since there was little walking involved, she opened the little speakeasy portal in the steel gate.

Two ladies were there, and they were not pesky Jehovah’s Witnesses, but Catholics on a collecting mission.

You see our neighborhood church up top? It is very old, and it’s in bad condition. We were informed that City Hall has agreed to chip in a percentage for a much-needed restoration, but residents here in our poor barrio have to pony up too.

We were being asked to pony up, so we ponied.

We learned that the amount one is asked to contribute is based on how well-off you look. In our hardscrabble neighborhood, we look quite well-off, so we were asked for 1,000 pesos.

We paid for the sake of architecture.

I think the Vatican should pay for the entire restoration, but it doesn’t seem that Headquarters pays us much mind.

I hope enough money is raised because I like the church. I see it every weekday morning during our exercise walk. I’ve rarely been inside, but I hear singing at times, and I see funerals and weddings there. All part of the tapestry hereabouts.

Two birds, one stone

upstairs

FIRST BIRD:

This lovely photo of the upstairs terraza was taken years ago, but don’t be fooled. It’s the worst spot of the house.

Doing a 180, and taking another shot, you get this below, which was taken within the last year.

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The chairs are the same, but the table now lives on the balcony of our downtown Casita, and the umbrella rotted from blazing sun and scorching heat.

For years I had a hammock under the roof tile, which covers a small percentage of the overall terraza, but in time I found myself rarely using it, so I gave it away.

Nowadays nobody goes out there much. No plant survives there except for cacti. Due to the floor being too level, a pond lives out there, ignoring the drain holes, covering about a fifth of the area, through the five rainy months.

A few years ago, a big section of the ceramic floor buckled from the heat and sun, and had to be replaced.

The spot should have been planned better during the construction, but it wasn’t. A darn shame. Mistakes happen when you’re too cheap to hire an architect.

SECOND BIRD:

new-imageCan’t let a post slip by without a political element, at least not these glorious days.

Fidel Castro died. This may be the best month in decades. First, Donald Trump wins. Then Castro dies. Some are suggesting a connection, but I doubt it.

I was saddened, but not surprised, to see Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto expressing sorrow for the pendejo’s overdue death. I voted for Peña Nieto.

But even more appalling is the reaction of Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who described Fidel as a “remarkable leader” and “legendary revolutionary.”

You cannot argue with either of those descriptions, but Trudeau meant them positively, not negatively.

Trudeau is a world-class ignoramus, and Canadians must be so proud. I guess he’s never been in Cuba, and if he has, he got the standard whitewash tour delivered by despots.

I have been in Cuba. A snarky hats-off to the Canuck nincompoop PM for inspiring me to link to this.

Let’s take both these birds and flip them toward Prime Minister Trudeau, using two hands.

Epic cluelessness

HERE’S A priceless demonstration of the divide between bona fide black people and leftist, elitist nincompoops.

The video showcases the usual leftist complaint about voter-ID requirements, that they discriminate against blacks who are, of course, too helpless to obtain official identification.

And then it gives a sampling of black reaction in Harlem to this condescending, leftist attitude toward them.

It’s fun. However, you can’t help but be mystified by blacks’ habitual support of the leftist Democrat Party.

And don’t forget the official election schedule: Republicans vote tomorrow, Nov. 8, and Democrats vote Nov. 9.

Leave balls at border

WE’RE DRIVING to San Miguel de Allende this week for a couple of days. The primary purpose of visiting that Gringo-infested outpost is to renew my expired U.S. passport.

Now sure exactly why I’m bothering to do this, especially since it’s going to set me back over $100, money I could more profitably use to keep myself in tacos for many years.

We do little (next to none) international travel, and my Mexican passport will serve for anywhere except the United States, a place that is not hollering my name anymore.

That nation is on a downward trajectory, something that grows more painfully obvious by the day. Pathetic and ignorant people are now running the American farm.

The U.S. Marine Corps has been forced to remove the word “man” from 19 job titles. I can easily see this happening on university campuses, but the Marines?!

New ImageI predict that soon the Marine Corps will consist of troops who look like Pajama Boy and this smug news lesbian.

Just below is a brief discussion about the issue of feminism by the wonderful Christina Hoff Sommers and the always interesting Camille Paglia.

Meanwhile, the neutering of a once-great nation marches on, and nobody seems to be able to apply the brakes.

The Russians and/or Chinese will do it in time.

Or maybe the Mohammedans.

Sowell’s wisdom

Sowell

(Today, we hand The Moon over to a guest columnist, one of the world’s most intelligent men, Thomas Sowell. Since Sowell is black, if you take issue with anything that follows, you are a racist and not fit for civilized company.)

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Random thoughts on the passing scene:

One of the problems with being a pessimist is that you can never celebrate when you are proven right.

If what you want from politicians are quick and easy answers, someone is sure to supply them, regardless of which party you follow. History can tell you where quick and easy answers lead. But, if you don’t want to bother reading history, you can just wait and relive its catastrophes.

What is “economic power”? What can Bill Gates stop you from doing?

I don’t understand how people who cannot predict the weather five days in advance can predict the climate decades from now.

One of history’s painful ironies is how often people on the brink of disaster have been preoccupied with trivialities. With a nuclear Iran with intercontinental missiles looming on the horizon, our intelligentsia are preoccupied with calling achievements “privilege” and playing other word games.

Of life’s many surprises, encountering an old flame, years later, is in a class by itself.

Some people seem to think that Donald Trump has great abilities because he is a billionaire. But being born rich and getter richer is not exactly a Horatio Alger miracle.

Of all the disheartening signs of the utter ignorance of so many American college students, nothing so completely disheartened me as seeing on television a black college student who did not know what the Civil War was about. Fifty years ago, it would have been virtually impossible to find a black adult, with even an elementary school education, who did not know what the Civil War was about.

Global warming, due to greenhouse gasses, is the latest in a long series of one-factor theories about a multi-factor world. Such theories have often enjoyed great popularity, despite how often they have turned out to be wrong.

One of the most richly rewarded skills in politics is the ability to make self-interest sound like idealism. Nowhere is this tactic more successful than in so-called “campaign finance reform” laws — spending restrictions that prevent challenger candidates from buying enough publicity to offset the free publicity that incumbents get from the media.

At one time, it seemed as if the free world had defeated the world of totalitarian dictatorships twice — first the Nazis and then the Communists. But, with the slow but steady expansion of government control over our lives and the spread of the idea that people who deny “climate change” (are) criminals, it seems as if totalitarianism may be winning, after all.

People who want to redistribute wealth often misunderstand the nature and causes of wealth. Tangible wealth can be confiscated, but you cannot confiscate the knowledge which produced that wealth. Countries that confiscated the wealth of some groups and expelled them, destitute, have often seen the economy collapse, while the expelled people became prosperous again elsewhere.

Some people think that Ted Cruz would not have as good a chance against Hillary Clinton as would Donald Trump. They say that Cruz does not have a sparkling style of speaking. But, after months of hearing childish insults from Trump, the public may be ready for some serious adult talk by someone with substance, who can cut right through Hillary’s shallow evasions.

To me, beautiful music is whatever music makes you glad to be a human being, whether it is “Musetta’s Waltz” from “La Boheme” or “Muskrat Ramble” from New Orleans. Much of what passes for music today makes me wish that, if there is such a thing as reincarnation, I can come back as a dolphin.

Republican leaders seem to be worried that Donald Trump will get the nomination and lose the election. Those of us who are not Republicans should worry that Trump will get the nomination and win the election. After all, the fate of the country is a lot more important than the fate of a political party — and in far greater danger.

As this country continues to degenerate, we hope that it never reaches the desperate stage where only a military coup can rescue it from catastrophes created by feckless politicians. But, if that day ever arrives, we can only hope that the military will do their duty and step in. It is one of the few institutions dedicated to something besides individual self-interest.

Anarchy lovers

dennis_pragerI FIRST ENCOUNTERED Dennis Prager on his television show in the early 1990s when I lived in Houston. Now, however, I keep in touch via his online columns.

Prager is sober and perceptive with a laser-like consistency.

An April 26 column headlined Why the Left Loathes Western Civilization is particularly excellent. You are aware, I hope, that the left does indeed loathe Western Civilization.

As Prager mentions, Stanford University students recently voted down, 1,992 to 347, a proposal to require — as it did until the 1980s — a survey course on Western Civilization.

This is lamentable. It is today’s Democrat Party.

Prager says the left loathes Western Civilization because the left hates standards, rules to play by, which is the very essence of any civilization, the opposite being anarchy.

Leftists dislike standards because with standards comes judgment, and leftists don’t want to be judged. Rules of right and wrong cramp their styles.

They prefer anarchy. In theory, at least. It’s one of those things that has a libertine appeal until it punches you in the face.

Those who believe in nothing are very, very jealous and angry with those who believe in something. — Dennis Prager.

Guest lecturer

BEFORE WE introduce today’s guest lecturer, the Unseen Moon’s first, let me preface with a few words.

I oppose the phenomenon of political correctness — a somewhat cute term for a cultural cancer — and everything connected to it. Its source is the political left, and its party in the United States is the Democratic. Barry’s people.

And Hillary’s and Bernie’s people too.

I don’t write about it much anymore because I view its opposition as an exercise in futility. Its damage is done. America and Europe are spiraling down. The crash into the mountainside is imminent. Brace yourself.

But I happened upon the following column that focuses on one element of the cancer, that of renaming things, which smells of Stalin’s having opponents airbrushed from photographs.

After he’s murdered them.

And I liked the column. I want to share.

Changing history is a longtime tool of tyrants. What’s going on now is not changing history so much as it’s altering how we should view it, nearly as bad. It is elevating ignorance.

With no further ado, let’s give a big Moon welcome to Bill O’Reilly who needs no introduction.

Know that armed guards wait in the lobby to show the exit door to any of you who try to shout him down.

This is not Yale or Mizzou.

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bill“As you may know, some students at Princeton University are requesting – demanding! – that Woodrow Wilson’s name be obliterated from campus buildings.

Not only did Wilson graduate from Princeton, he was president of the school, governor of New Jersey and an impeccably ‘progressive’ president of the United States. So what’s the beef?

Well, our 28th president was a dyed-in-the-wool racist who re-segregated the federal bureaucracy.

His retrograde racial views have long been known to anyone who has taken the time to read about Wilson, and this latest campus dustup raises a question:

Why stop with Woodrow Wilson?

The town of Princeton and the university itself are named after William III, Prince of Orange, whose family was deeply involved in the slave trade. Princeton has streets and buildings honoring native son Paul Robeson, the singer, athlete, actor, and unapologetic Stalinist.

Robeson, undeniably a remarkable and talented man, clung to his affection for communism and the USSR even after being told that the Soviets were persecuting Jews. Perhaps his name should be vanished, Soviet-style, from the town square.

To the north in Connecticut, Wesleyan University got its name from John Wesley, founder of the Methodist Church.

A couple of centuries before San Bernardino, Paris, ISIS, and all the other Islamic-related mayhem, Wesley described Muslims as ‘destroyers of human kind.’ So shouldn’t the trustees consider re-naming their ultra-liberal university?

Not to be outdone, Winston Churchill, whose name adorns numerous American schools, wrote that ‘no stronger retrograde force exists in the world’ than Islam.

And let’s not overlook President John Quincy Adams, who warned that the Koran advises ‘perpetual war’ against infidels. Yes, JQA was an Islamophobe, but don’t mention it to the good folks of Quincy, Massachusetts.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt, a saint in the church of liberalism, had some serious issues with homosexuality. As secretary of the navy, FDR went on a crusade to find and weed out ‘sexual perversion’ in the Navy.

The Great Emancipator Abraham Lincoln opined that the white race must always retain ‘the superior position.’

Think of all those ‘Lincoln Elementary Schools’ and “Roosevelt High Schools’ across the USA and the big payday in store for stone masons.

In West Virginia, pretty much everything not nailed down is named after long-serving Democratic Senator Robert Byrd, whose career included a stint as Exalted Cyclops in the local Ku Klux Klan chapter. If there are calls to have his name sandblasted from all those edifices, we have not heard them.

Most towns, probably yours included, have streets named after slaveholders Washington, Jefferson, and Madison. Yes, a stroll on Madison Avenue in New York City may require a ‘trigger warning’ for some of today’s more delicate college students.

The point of all this is not to say that everything should be renamed, but rather that nothing should be renamed. Unless, that is, some horrible new disclosure comes to light.

Anyone with a pulse and curiosity could have known that Woodrow Wilson was a stone-cold racist, that Honest Abe honestly felt blacks were lesser beings, and that Churchill loathed Islam.

These were men of their times expressing views that were common then, but which we now consider repugnant. They should be judged by the standards of the eras in which they lived, not by our notions of what is acceptable.

Demonizing FDR for his views of homosexuality makes as much sense as criticizing his fondness for cigarettes.

However, if we suddenly discover that Wilson was, say, a pedophile, or that Lincoln was a serial killer in his spare time, a re-examination will be in order.

Short of that, how about we just leave things the way they are? Sorry to all you bricklayers out there.

As an aside, back in 1964 Shirley Ellis had a runaway hit with ‘The Name Game.’ If you’re of a certain age, you can still recite her unique lyrics — ‘Lincoln, Lincoln, bo Bincoln, Bonanana fanna fo Fincoln.’ It was a light song infused with fun and joy.

But today’s Name Game is one of bitterness, usually played by left-wingers who revel in feeling ‘oppressed.’ And if they really want to start down the slippery slope of erasing past leaders from public streets and buildings, why not go all the way?

Out with Washington and Lincoln and Roosevelt, down with Churchill and Wilson and Madison. Let the re-naming begin!”

Voter card

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I RENEWED my Mexican voter ID card. It’s laminated and has my color mugshot. My child bride did the same.

This is my first renewal. It was almost a decade back when I got the initial one. It was a simple process. We went today to a nicely appointed, modern office right off the main plaza.

There were few people waiting, two or three.

I had to show a proof of residence, so I took my latest light bill. And, yet again, I had to show paperwork proving I’m a made Mexican, if not a born one.

My wife just showed a birth certificate and light bill.

After displaying the required paperwork, I was told to step into the next room and have a seat. I waited less than five minutes till I was called to a window where I had to sign a few forms, leave fingerprints and have my photo taken.

All was done with high-tech gear.

Come back in two weeks and pick up the new card. Now, that wasn’t so bad, and it makes perfect sense, proving who you are, that you’re a citizen before getting to vote.

One can’t help but snicker at how the Democrat Party above the Rio Bravo screams discrimination at such a process. It’s an imposition on poor people, they yell. Yet somehow the poor people of Mexico do it just fine. And no gnashing of teeth.

Nobody feels put upon.

It’s a convenient card, used not just to vote, but it serves as a national ID, and you’re asked for it fairly often for this, that and the other. I flash it proudly.

It’s understandable that the Democrat Party up north wants to make voting as easy as possible because if it required much effort, the ignorant wouldn’t bother, and Democrat politicians rely on the ignorant to stay in power.

So I’m set to vote for another decade, assuming I last that long, and in a few months I’ll renew my Mexican passport, which will go smoothly too. And no gnashing of teeth.

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(The photo is not from my town. I forgot to take my camera. It’s an election office elsewhere in Mexico.)