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Sunday, July 14, 2002

I'd like to blog more...

...honest. But Blogger won't let me. If it's not a 503 error, it's something else and it's driving me absolutely crazy! So I'll keep forcing myself to blog in the hopes that it somehow sees the light of day. Personally, I think these errors are intentional so we all pony up the dough it costs to switch to Blogger Pro.

I'm published!

Well, it's a small article in the Epicentre Forum, the house organ for Epicentre, a molecular biology company which we employ for a variety of biological tools. It's not a peer reviewed journal, so it doesn't count for my thesis (I need to work on that small aspect of my degree) but it's a step in the right direction. At least I hope it is!

Anyways, if you want to be dazzled by my scientific brilliance, check out the following article and go to pages 6 and 7. You'll need Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader to view it.

Friday, July 12, 2002

Veggie Tales Music? Who cares?!?!

While various entities within St. Blog argue the *ahem* finer points of Veggie Tales music, I contend that they're skipping over an even better genre of music, that of the love song. Given below is my opinion of the "Best Love Song Ever":

Never My Love (by: The Association)
You ask me if there'll come a time
when I grow tired of you;
never my love, never my love.

You wonder if this heart of mine
will lose its desire for you;
never my love, never my love.

What makes you think love will end
when you know that my whole life,
depends on you?

Never my love, never my love.

You say you fear I'll change my mind
I won't require you;
never my love, never my love.

How can you think love will end,
when I've asked you to spend your
whole life with me?

Thursday, July 11, 2002

You want to talk "sports hero"?

Look first at Lance Armstrong, and then look no further.

I wonder what would have happened if they had decided...

... to freeze Jesus' body instead of placing Him in the tomb?

Cure for HIV?

Over at Mark Shea’s Blog he talks about an article that says that some researchers claim to have a cure in 5 years. He also speaks about a friend of his who said this would never happen. I have to agree with his friend. I’m a PhD candidate in Microbiology/Immunology (which includes studies in Virology) and I’m also what you would call a “gene jockey” (i.e.: molecular biologist). In the history of man, there has only been one virus that has ever been eradicated (that being smallpox), and smallpox ain’t HIV folks. Smallpox was easy to target and eliminate because it did not employ the immune evasion techniques that are the hallmark of HIV. It had stable epitopes (i.e.: targets) on the surface, which allowed for antibody production, making a vaccine highly effective. HIV has a penchant for changing the epitopes that are exposed on its surface (thanks to the inefficiency in the reverse transcriptase, which inserts mutations through the original sequence upon replication), making an antibody vaccine (which has been proposed) virtually impossible.

Do I hope they can do it? Yes.

Do I think they can do it? No.

My PhD revolves around the studying of a sexually transmitted disease, gonorrhoeae. There is also no vaccine for gonorrhea, and people always ask me when such a vaccine will be developed. I tell them that we already have the means to eradicate this disease and it’s 100% effective. They’re stunned when I say this, and then they ask me how this is possible.

My reply? Abstinence followed by marriage followed by monogamy.

Sometimes the hardest things to implement are the things that just make too much sense.

But you know what? HIV can be eradicated the same way nowadays. At least in the United States of America.

Friday, July 05, 2002

Add this to the "You've Got To Be Kidding Me" Files...

Controversy At Hot Dog Eating Contest

Don't people have better things to worry about?


Thursday, July 04, 2002

Respect the Flag

Happy 4th of July everyone.

Wednesday, July 03, 2002

For those who...

... thought that appointing Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating as the chairman of this new laity oversight committee was a "Good Thing (tm)".

Guess again.

I'll touch on this subject again in a later blog... like when I can find something charitable about this man. The problem is, he's always opening his mouth and saying something really stupid.

Pr 17:28
Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.

Tuesday, July 02, 2002

Say what?

Over at Verus Ratio, on the topic of the recent ruling against the death penalty, he states:

But here, the judge has set himself up as a legislature, overruling the expressed will of the vast majority of the American people, who view the death penalty as just and necessary.


If it truly is a majority, and I do not think it is any longer, the majority must be 51% (Yay) to 49% (Nay). More and more states are coming to the conclusion that the death penalty is not a deterrent, it is more costly and innocent people have been convicted. We do not yet know if an innocent person has been executed, but we know they have been convicted.

Personally, I feel it was the right decision, and I applaud the ruling. I know many others feel the same way. Perhaps if Verus Ratio put aside his desire for revenge, and saw the ruling in light of some Christian charity and mercy, he'd see the value in it.

Saturday, June 29, 2002

Intense.

The fleecing of the American public

Can you believe it? Starting June 30th, a stamp for a first class letter will cost you 37 cents. When I was born, a stamp was 8 cents. That is an increase of 460% over the span of almost 30 years. This change will net the U.S.P.S. 500 million dollars extra, a month.

Compare that to the value of a fetus. During that same time, a fetus' value was downgraded from priceless (protected under law) to around 300 dollars (the average cost of an abortion). This change has robbed the United States of countless individuals who could have made tremendous ethical, moral, philosophical, scientific and theological impacts on our world. Just imagine if Martin Luther King or Jonas Salk's parents had decided to get abortions.

Now, you tell me that the inhabitants of the United States aren't getting fleeced. Oh, and say it with a straight face.



Eye Can Knot Believe It!

First eye get snubbed bye the Vatican, end now eye get snubbed bye Nihil Obstat? My paranoia must bee flaring up, everyone is out two ignore me!

Mail Call Deux - Prop/Plug

Received the following email from Charles:


Dear Mr. Joseph,

I am a Catholic who experiences same sex attraction and who endeavors to live chastely in accordance with Catholic teachings. I have written a website on this topic called the "Same Sex Attraction Morality League", which is at "http://www.ssaml.com". Please feel free to check it out if you wish and recommend it to anyone who might be helped by it.


The hotlink for the site is : Same Sex Attraction Morality League. Checked out, and now recommended to my readership. Looks pretty orthodox to me... quite a difference from most agendas you see nowadays. Keep up the good work Charles.



Mail call!

Received the following from Peter Sean, the fellow who runs Lex Communis:


Subject: Tale of Two Brothers

I first read a version of the Tale of Two Brothers in a collection of stories by Manley Wade Wellman called Who Fears the Devil. The common character in the collection was a John, a wandering folksinger, who would wander into Appalachian folktales. The story was Over the Hill and Everywhere and was first published in the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction in 1956.

Do you know if your story comes from Wellman's story, or was Wellman's story based on a rescripting of an earlier folktale? And, if you don't know, that's cool too. Just curious. I always liked the story, especially around Christmas.


Unfortunately, I have no idea where the story comes from. I received the story in the mail from the deacon of the parish I attend. However, Peter does give us more info on his theory over at his blog in this blog entry.



New additions to my Catholic Blog's list

First up is John Mallon who blogs to Mallon's Media Watch and the other is Anthony Marquis who blogs to Veni Sancte Spiritus. Also, I should make mention of the man who reneged on his comment to quit blogging "cold turkey", Mike Hardy of Enemy of the Church? fame. I know you've been back awhile Mike, but it's good to have you around.

P.S.: Found out that my major in-flux of people a few days ago were Shea-ites. Welcome and I hope you guys found something worthwhile! And if anyone knows anyone at the Vatican, can you send them here? I'm still waiting for my hit from the Vatican... so far... nada! :(

Friday, June 28, 2002

Sick, sick, just plain sick

Add this to the You've Got To Be Kidding Me files.

Quote: “What’s all the fuss about? It was all a joke.”

Yes, just a joke. I guess when I have children it'll be a regular laugh riot to dress them up as David Koresh and Timothy McVeigh.

Some people are just plain morons. Hundreds if not thousands of Jews have been killed in suicide bombing attacks, hundreds if not thousands of Palestinians have been killed in counter-attacks and this Palestinian family thinks dressing their child up as a suicide bomber is nothing more than a joke?

Oy vey!

Thursday, June 27, 2002

Can you say "militant atheist"?

I certainly can, especially after I read the following interview from the guy who filed the lawsuit that got the words "under God" yanked from the Pledge of Allegiance.


Neville: At what point did your daughter come home to you and say she was ostracized for not saying the Pledge of Allegiance?

Newdow: My daughter is in the lawsuit because you need that for standing. I brought this case because I am an atheist and this offends me, and I have the right to bring up my daughter without God being imposed into her life by her schoolteachers. So she did not come and say she was ostracized.


And the gem...

The framers were quite wise in recognizing what religion can do and how it can cause hatred and how it can cause death.


My opinion? What an ass. This fool (he's a lawyer and a doctor?) has never heard of Stalin or Pol Pot or Mao Tse Tung? Give me a break. More people have died under communist rule (which imposes a strict atheism for the Masses, and when it allows religious worship it does so under a very tight noose) than all the Crusades, Inquisitions and witch burnings combined.

For the facts, check out the following article at Stand to Reason dot Org.

Pathetic... truly pathetic. This guy used his daughter as a pawn to advance his own personal agenda. Now THAT is true love for you. NOT!

Humanae Vitae hits the nail on the head once again...

Found this following article saying that men are afraid of committment and so are not getting married. Here is an excerpt:

Researchers say one of the biggest reasons that men are delaying marriage is that more and more couples are choosing to live together before marriage. As a result, sex -- traditionally one of the main reasons for men to marry -- is relatively easily available, they say.

"In a sense, with cohabitation he gets a quasi-wife without having to commit," said David Popenoe, co-director of the National Marriage Project at Rutgers University in New Jersey.


An excerpt from Section 17 of Pope Paul VI's encyclical Humanae Vitae states the following:

Another effect that gives cause for alarm is that a man who grows accustomed to the use of contraceptive methods may forget the reverence due to a woman, and, disregarding her physical and emotional equilibrium, reduce her to being a mere instrument for the satisfaction of his own desires, no longer considering her as his partner whom he should surround with care and affection.


Whoever doesn't think Pope Paul VI was a prophet needs to examine those two things very very closely.


Grass Roots Movement?

I know a lot of people bought flags in the days immediately following September 11, 2001. How do I know? The local Wal-Mart was sold out of flags for weeks afterwards, and we couldn't buy one anywhere. My wife and I actually flew the flag she received at her Girl Scout Gold Award ceremony (a flag flown atop the Capitol) until we could purchase a new one.

My question is... how many people are still flying those flags that they purchased after 9/11/01? On my block, I count only one family flying the American flag in front of their house each and every day (weather permitting)... my wife and I. No one else.

Gee, that patriotism sure lasted long, eh?

Well, this threat to the Pledge of Allegiance is an attack on this great nation, but now it is an attack from within. Just like we rallied around our country immediately following the attacks of 9/11, and flew the flag as a sign of that support, I suggest that we fly those flags again in support of our Pledge of Allegiance. Fly those flags day in and day out, and let your voice be heard. Contact every law-maker you can and tell him or her how tragic you think the decision handed down by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was.

Do it... now.

What would Red Skelton say?

The following was taken from USFlag.org.

--Start--
As a schoolboy, one of Red Skelton's teachers explained the words and meaning of the Pledge of Allegiance to his class. Skelton later wrote down, and eventually recorded, his recollection of this lecture. It is followed by an observation of his own.

I - - Me; an individual; a committee of one.

Pledge - - Dedicate all of my worldly goods to give without self-pity.

Allegiance - - My love and my devotion.

To the Flag - - Our standard; Old Glory ; a symbol of Freedom; wherever she waves there is respect, because your loyalty has given her a dignity that shouts, Freedom is everybody's job.

United - - That means that we have all come together.

States - - Individual communities that have united into forty-eight great states. Forty-eight individual communities with pride and dignity and purpose. All divided with imaginary boundaries, yet united to a common purpose, and that is love for country.

And to the Republic - - Republic--a state in which sovereign power is invested in representatives chosen by the people to govern. And government is the people; and it's from the people to the leaders, not from the leaders to the people.

For which it stands, One Nation - - One Nation--meaning, so blessed by God.

Indivisible - - Incapable of being divided.

With Liberty - - Which is Freedom; the right of power to live one's own life, without threats, fear, or some sort of retaliation.

And Justice - - The principle, or qualities, of dealing fairly with others.

For All - - For All--which means, boys and girls, it's as much your country as it is mine.


And now, boys and girls, let me hear you recite the Pledge of Allegiance:

I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic, for which it stands; one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

Since I was a small boy, two states have been added to our country, and two words have been added to the Pledge of Allegiance: Under God. Wouldn't it be a pity if someone said that is a prayer, and that would be eliminated from schools, too?

--End--

Oh, if you only knew...

Wednesday, June 26, 2002

Welcome!

205 visitors yesterday! 195 the day before. I don't know where all you folks are coming from, but I hope you enjoy your stay! Please visit often!

God bless.

P.S. on the Pledge of Allegiance

The words "one Nation under God" were added to the Pledge in 1954. Why? A campaign led by the Knights of Columbus, (a Catholic organization), lead Congress to add the words. Ironically enough, I bet all the anti-Catholics right now are trying their hardest to see this decision of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court reversed though. If the situation wasn't so horribly pathetic, I'd say it was funny.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals can stick it in their ear

'I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all, (born and unborn*).'

*Newest addendum (see above) added by the Knights of Columbus, to be said at the beginning of all meetings.

Tuesday, June 25, 2002

Random musing...

I like to consider myself a history buff, it was always my best subject in grade school and high school. Unfortunately, for me anyways, I never saw much of a career in history so I went into the life sciences for my degrees in college. So far that decision has paid off well, though with the length of time it's taking me to get my doctorate, I might need to rethink it all (no turning back now son!). Anyways, one of my favorite speeches came from Winston Churchill. It's the famous "We shall never surrender!" speech and was delivered on June 4, 1940 to the House of Commons. The part that strikes me the most is the following excerpt...

We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this Island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God's good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old.

Given the depths to which we have sunk into the Culture of Death today, could we liberate anyone from anything?



Article on another firefighter's prayer

Found this article over at the National Catholic Register. It's a good read, and deals with a story from September 11th. It also has a second, but similar, version of the prayer found just in the blog entry just below this one.

The Firefighter's Prayer

When I am called to duty, God - wherever flames may rage,
Give me strength to save a life, whatever be its age.
Help me embrace a little child - before it is too late,
Or save an older person from the horror of that fate.
Enable me to be alert, and hear the weakest shout,
Quickly and efficiently to put the fire out.
I want to fill my calling, to give the best in me,
To guard my friend and neighbor, and protect his property.
And if according to Your will - I must answer death's call,
Bless with your protecting hand,
my family one and all.

This prayer goes out to all those firefighters who protect each and every one of us, day in and day out. Your sacrifice and service are appreciated. This prayer is said especially today for those firefighters who are battling the blazes out in Arizona and Colorado.

Sheesh.

Are you telling me that Jennifer Aniston's diamond-studded crucifix didn't cover things up enough?

Monday, June 24, 2002

The rich always get richer...

To tell you the truth, I never liked Martha Stewart's materialistic approach to things. I mean, who cares if the napkins for dinner match the curtains. Now with the ImClone fiasco busting out on the scene, it turns out she's also a criminal. Lovely.

First it was the Enron scandal where the executives and big-wigs bailed out, leaving their middle class, blue and white collar workers and shareholders to foot the bill. Now we've got people like Ms. Stewart being exposed for the frauds that the rich and powerful always seem to be. Jesus hit the nail on the head when He said (Matthew 19:23-24):

And Jesus said to his disciples, "Truly, I say to you, it will be hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

No doubt it will be difficult for these people to enter into Heaven because their greed and avarice leads them down a road devoid of charity. They'd gladly step on the skulls of the poor (including the middle class which is seemingly shrinking day by day) to get more. No, I'm not bitter... I just hate being abused for the profit of others.

Saturday, June 22, 2002

What is wrong with people?!?

Come on folks, really... grow up already!

PETA sez:

It is OK to have consensual sex with chickens, but it's wrong to play tic-tac-toe with them.

Can someone please explain to me why PETA is so screwed in the head?

Friday, June 21, 2002

Apologies

My apologies for those who come to this blog, looking to read some new blog entries from me. Let me say that I appreciate the visits, it means a lot to me to know that people actually care [some of you might, at any rate :) ], and allow me to apologize for slacking in getting out something worthwhile for blog entries. Alas, my graduate career beckons, and I've neglected it far too often. Ergo, my time blogging hasbeen restricted, and while I hope to blog more, I need to get myself organized. So please, pray for me, that I can prioritize and organize so I can do the things that I love to do (blogging being one of them) while doing the things I need to do (like doing my work so I can graduate)!

Thank you, and God bless.

Love Begs

If thou wouldst learn, not knowing how to pray,
Add but a faith, and say as beggars say:
"Master, I'm poor, and blind, in great distress,
Hungry, and lame, and cold, and comfortless;
Oh succour him that's gravell'd on the shelf
Of pain, and want, and cannot help himself;
Cast down thine eye upon a wretch, and take
Some pity on me, for sweet Jesus' sake";
But hold! take heed this clause be not put in,
"I never begged before, nor will again."
- Francis Quarles

The real test of the Christian is not how much he loves his friends, but how much he loves his enemies.
- Fulton J. Sheen

Thursday, June 20, 2002

Question: How stupid is this?

Answer: Very.

Wednesday, June 19, 2002

God won't ask what kind of car you drove, but He'll ask how many people you drove who didn't have transportation.

God won't ask the square footage of your house, but He'll ask how many people you welcomed into your home.

God won't ask about the clothes you had in your closet, but He'll ask how many you helped to clothe.

God won't ask about your social status; He will ask what kind of class you displayed.

God won't ask how many material possessions you had, but He'll ask if they dictated your life.

God won't ask what your highest salary was, but He'll ask if you compromised your character to obtain it.

God won't ask how much overtime you worked, but He'll ask if your overtime work was for yourself or for your family.

God won't ask how many promotions you received, but He'll ask how you promoted others.

God won't ask what your job title was, but He'll ask if you performed your job to the best of your ability.

God won't ask what you did to help yourself, but He'll ask what you did to help others.

God won't ask how many friends you had, but He'll ask how many people to whom you were a friend.

God won't ask what you did to protect your rights, but He'll ask what you did to protect the rights of others.

God won't ask in what neighborhood you lived, but He'll ask how you treated your neighbors.

God won't ask about the color of your skin, but He'll ask about the content of your character.

God won't ask why it took you so long to seek Salvation, but He'll lovingly take you to your mansion in heaven, and not to the gates of Hell.

Tuesday, June 18, 2002

A Tale of Two Brothers...

Once upon a time two brothers who lived on adjoining farms fell into conflict. 
 
It was the first serious rift in 40 years of farming side by side, sharing machinery, and trading labor and goods as needed without a hitch. 
 
Then the long collaboration fell apart. It began with a small misunderstanding and it grew into a major difference, and finally it exploded into an exchange of bitter words followed by weeks of silence. 
 
One morning there was a knock on John's door. He opened it to find a man with a carpenter's toolbox. "I'm looking for a few days' work", he said. "Perhaps you would have a few small jobs here and there I could help with? Could I help you?" 
 
"Yes," said the older brother. "I do have a job for you. Look across the creek at that farm. That's my neighbor; in fact, it's my younger brother. "
 
"Last week there was a meadow between us and he took his bulldozer to the river levee and now there is a creek between us. Well, he may have done this to spite me, but I'll go him one better. See that pile of lumber by the barn? I want you to build me a fence - - an 8-foot fence -- so I won't need to see his place or his face anymore." 
 
The carpenter said, "I think I understand the situation. Show me the nails and the post-hole digger and I'll be able to do a job that pleases you." 
 
The older brother had to go to town, so he helped the carpenter get the materials ready and then he was off for the day. The carpenter worked hard all that day measuring, sawing, nailing. About sunset when the farmer returned, the carpenter had just finished his job. The farmer's eyes opened wide, his jaw dropped. There was no fence there at all. It was a bridge -- a bridge stretching from one side of the creek to the other! A fine piece of work handrails and all -- and the neighbor, his younger brother, was coming across, his hand outstretched. "You are quite a fellow to build this bridge after all I've said and done." 
 
The two brothers stood at each end of the bridge, and then they met in the middle, taking each other's hand. They turned to see the carpenter hoist his toolbox on his shoulder. 
 
"No, wait! Stay a few days. I've a lot of other projects for you," said the older brother. 
 
"I'd love to stay on," the carpenter said, "but, I have many more bridges to build." 

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