HT Steve Ray
for referring to this at Just Being Plain
-- full sized image at bottom
Are you Joost? (revised with review)
PLEASE NO MORE REQUESTS FOR INVITES. I HAVE UNINSTALLED THE PROGRAM UNTIL THEY SOLVE THE ROUTER ISSUE
From their web site
Joost is a new way of watching TV on the internet. With Joost, you get all the things you love about TV, including a high-quality full-screen picture, hundreds of full-length shows and easy channel-flipping.
Inside the box
You get great internet features too, such as search, chat and instant messaging, built right into the program - so you find shows quickly and talk to your friends while you watch. And with no schedules to worry about, you can watch whatever you want, whenever you like - as often as you want. Joost is completely free, and works with most modern PCs and Intel Mac-based computers with a broadband connection. Get Joost today!
I have had a little time to play with Joost tonight. As far as I am concerned this (or something similar) is the future of television. The channel I added that I am most pumped about?Classica
- I cannot wait to WATCH The Planets - Gustav Holst -- watched it last night
Here is my basic review now that I have had a few days to play with it. THE GOOD
First off I want to start this off by saying that the code is beta code. They have released it for public testing for the reason of resolving some of the issues I will point out below. The software is stable. I think the program selection is better than others have stated. I like Rocky and Bullwinkle. I like Classica. I like Ren and Stimpy (at least the first season gems they have up right now). You cannot beat Transformers and GI Joe. I am enjoying the selections. THE NOT SO GOOD
The channel selection and navigation is a little clunky. You have to select channels from the list and then look at what the channel offers to select a program. Its a somewhat intuitive interface. It even looks really nice but it is a TIME CONSUMING menu system. It also has a bad habit of adding new channels to your "My Channels" list. I really do not want MTV or adult swim on my channels. The video quality overall is marginal although at times it really does look spectacular. The audio quality is not getting me too excited. I don't know if it improves with a better connection to the Internet but I would hope it does. I have a 3.0 Mbps connection at home which should be sufficient. THE BAD
The ad placement is terrible. I saw 4 ads during The Planets. They were all the same ad. Rewind a little ... I saw 4 ads DURING The Planets. That means in the middle of Jupiter, or Saturn (most irritating as that is my favorite piece) .. That is not going to cut it for a channel that shows classical music performances. THE REALLY UGLY
This program uses WAY too many network resources. In fact, it crashed my router at home and then when I left it running in the task bar at work it crashed our router there. This is a major problem that will need to be resolved or users will exit the scene entirely. CONCLUSION
I think Joost shows promise but it really needs to hammer through the issues above before I think it is ready for prime time. For people like me the novelty is going to keep me reviewing it and hopefully helping them resolve these issues. Don't buy into the hype ... yet.
Finally, I have unlimited invites and there are others on the Internet giving them away. Just keep in mind it is beta software and care needs to be taken with its use ... If anyone is interested post a comment here and I will forward you an invite. PLEASE NO MORE REQUESTS FOR INVITES. I HAVE UNINSTALLED THE PROGRAM UNTIL THEY SOLVE THE ROUTER ISSUE
Are there any useful Widgets?
OK, I signed up at Widgetbox. I thought about adding my favorite videos from YouTube. Interesting widget but in reality I don't keep up with my favorites all that much so you would get to see a bunch of VW ads for the next 3 years. Then I figured I would switch to the last.fm widget they have. Cool but not as cool as the one available on their site (which I have to the right and happens currently to NOT be showing my recent tracks - Bela Fleck right now) ...
The most useful one I have found reads in RSS feeds but it has ads ... and the other most useful one allows you to place any HTML in it, which is useful if you are managing lots of items from it BUT I have complete control of the blocks in this blog and I know HTML well enough to get away with doing it here. I am not saving any time managing widgets elsewhere. There are too many good widgets external to Widgetbox for it to be worth my time. Besides, if I want you to play PacMan I am not adding it to my blog. I am sending you to an arcade.
I'll dig through it again in a few days .. for now though, I am finding it hard to sift through the majority of the lame widgets to find the useful ones.
The Catholic Summer Reading Program
He Could No Longer Explain Why He Wasn’t Catholic
He Could No Longer Explain Why He Wasn’t Catholic
Fascinating interview with Francis Beckwith.
Catholicism does not teach “works righteousness.” It teaches faith in action as a manifestation of God’s grace in one’s life. That’s why Abraham’s faith results in righteousness only when he attempts to offer his son Isaac as a sacrifice to God.
Then I read the Council of Trent, which some Protestant friends had suggested I do. What I found was shocking. I found a document that had been nearly universally misrepresented by many Protestants, including some friends.
I do not believe, however, that the misrepresentation is the result of purposeful deception. But rather, it is the result of reading Trent with Protestant assumptions and without a charitable disposition.
For example, Trent talks about the four causes of justification, which correspond somewhat to Aristotle’s four causes. None of these causes is the work of the individual Christian. For, according to Trent, God’s grace does all the work. However, Trent does condemn “faith alone,” but what it means is mere intellectual assent without allowing God’s grace to be manifested in one’s actions and communion with the Church. This is why Trent also condemns justification by works.
I am convinced that the typical “Council of Trent” rant found on anti-Catholic websites is the Protestant equivalent of the secular urban legend that everyone prior to Columbus believed in a flat earth.
The Holy Spirit isn't good enough
Vatican doctrine office overhaul
Its censure in March of Father Jon Sobrino, a leading liberation theology proponent, prompted an appeal for a thorough overhaul of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the modern-day successor of the Inquisition.
“The structure of the CDF must be reformed,” said Peter Huenermann from Tuebingen, Germany.
“It still operates just like the censorship bureaus most European countries had until the end of the 19th century,” Huenermann, the appeal’s author and a retired theology professor from Tuebingen University, said.
Other gems include:
He said the CDF should work like an academic review board, using modern methods such as peer review for publications to allow theologians to test out new ideas. He said he and some colleagues were considering drawing up a proposal for reforms.
and a supposed need for
“modern quality control” for Church theology.
I guess the Holy Spirit isn't good enough to lead the Church into all truth.
Vatican Goes Solar
... meanwhile ... Other Christians criticize move
I am not sure I understand how adding solar panels at the Vatican and suggesting that people do their part to frugally use resources that are available to us isn't simply supporting good stewardship. Also, to criticize the Vatican for failing to mention the evils of population control in the same breath with climate change simply means the Vatican sees them as two separate issues. It doesn't follow that the Vatican will throw its weight towards supporting Kyoto just because they like solar panels. Besides, I have a feeling the whole world knows how the Vatican stands on population control. After all, that teaching on contraception has been kind of controversial in recent decades.
Along with the "live" blogroll
, which I am pleased with, I added the following images to my sidebar ... My wife has a degree in graphic design and she says she always likes to know why people make certain design decisions. I just like pictures ... really ... Here is why I chose each
Because this blogroll is supposed to be "fresh" I wanted to choose a scene outdoors.
get it ... I know ... not funny ... but there is your reason.
I love electronic music. This is a shot of a famous synthesizer from years past.
I was originally looking for a map of the London Undeground but I wanted one with a black background and was too lazy to do the work myself to make it that way.
This is better IMHO. All roads lead to Rome. Fitting for a Catholic blog. Almost all of my links lead to Rome.
I specifically chose older books because the things I have listed in this section are pretty old works. The historical nature of my faith is really what I wanted to convey here.
I really just wanted one of those signposts with the 5000 arrows pointing to different cities within 5000 miles of a location. This one with the natural scenic beauty just fit the bill better than others that I found.
CatholicDaily latest: Balancing Technology with the Spiritual Life
In subsequent Digital Catholic articles I have indulged in the glory of reading numerous blogs and surfing through the near endless Catholic content on YouTube. In a perfect world each of us would schedule a sliver of time per day aimed at satisfying a positive spiritual need of learning something new about our faith. In reality though, we all know that a fine line can be crossed that sends us on a downward spiral. Tools that we once used to strengthen our faith can become a constant distraction standing between us and our families, employers and worst of all, God.(more)
More on Youtube Catholics
In light of my recent article on CatholicDaily
and Tim Drakes recent article in the National Catholic Register
I wanted to take the time to point out an effort being made by Nicholas Hardesty over at the phatcatholic apologetics blog ...YouTube Summer Project
This post will be home base for the YouTube Summer Project. As you find good, solid, orthodox, Catholic videos on YouTube or Google Videos, leave a comment providing the title of the video and a link to it. As new videos are provided, I will add them to the list. Before you submit your video, check the list and make sure it has not already been submitted.Amy Welborn
also comments on Tim's article.
Our deep love for felt banners
The Seventies Are Over, Burn The Bloody Things
As sovereign autocrat of this miserable blog and all its lands ( It doesn't have any, so forget that part. ) I have decided to found an Order of Chivalry. The Militant and Just Bloody Rotten Order of the Torch begins. What, you ask, is the purpose of the Order? Simple, really. We're going to declare war. On what? That disgusting relic of the fraudulant, defunct and stinking "spirit of Vatican II"....
....those friggin felt banners.
Back when I was Protestant I used to attend a church that had a felt banner ministry. They would make them and take them to other Evangelical churches in the region. I didn't like them then and I still don't ... hand me a torch.
Right on Rich ... The apologetics we need
The apologetics we need
Countless books have been written to counter the claims of Protestants against the Catholic faith. But
what's needed is a book of apologetics that corrects the catechetical canards that are passed on to unsuspecting Catholics in places like RCIA.
I have a few suggested titles based on current popular apologetics works
Catholicism vs. Indifferentism
Feelings Are Not Enough
Born Affirmed, Born Again Catholic
National Catholic Register - YouTube Catholics
Bishops Conference Responds To 18 Democrats Critical Of Pope
Pro-abort politicians and The Lord's Supper, prayer and homeschooling
Haven't been able to post but I have collected some reading over the past few weeks ... Augustine on "The Lord's Supper"
First off, I found a blog on the Theology of the Body which I am interested in following. What drew my attention however was this post regarding Augustine's beliefs regarding the Eucharist. I need to review these. Augustine on "The Lord's Supper"
... and continuing on that theme ... Experience of Lord's Supper in Protestant Churches
This is a discussion my wife and I have on occasion. The PhatCatholic apologetics blog is outstanding BTW. The Experience and Reality of the Lord's Supper in Protestant ChurchesCanon law and pro-abortion politiciansCanonical consequences for supporting pro-abortion legislation
Ed Peters, canon lawyer reviews the pertinent canons regarding pro-abortion politicians. A couple items from the Pope while in BrazilChurch grows by attraction, not proselytism, Pope saysParents, pray with your children, Pope says10 Prayers God always says YES to
Go check them out at Happy Catholic
. Short read. Very edifying. Homeschooling Corner
Since homeschooling is back on the front burner in our lives, a couple of interesting short reads ... Home school kids learn socialization
"Far from being a drawback to home schooling, as the myth would have it, socialization is actually one of home schooling's greatest virtues."Homeschooling and Freedom of Thought
- profiling a case of an extraordinary example of a scientist who was homeschooled in an unbelieving household.
Also, my thoughts on socialization - Homeschooling: So what about socialization?
The devil as an apostate angel
... is not an invention of Milton
It may not be explicit in the Old Testament; but the idea of fallen angels is a part of Jewish rabbinic tradition. Stories of fallen angels exist in the Talmud.
I found this reading a post on spiritual attacks
... It includes references to the ECFs on the matter. May add it to my chart although it is not a particularly controversial doctrine so it might be more a clutter than not. Irenaeus writes:
"The devil, however, since he is an apostate angel, is able, as he was in the beginning, to lead astray and to deceive the mind of man for the transgressing of God's commands. Little by little he can darken the hearts of those who would try to serve him, to the point that, forgetting the true God, they adore him as if he were God" (Against Heresies 5:24:3 [inter A.D. 180-199]).Origen writes:
"In regard to the devil and his angels and opposing powers, the ecclesiastical teaching maintains that these beings do indeed exist, but what they are or how they exist is not explained with sufficient clarity. This opinion, however, is held by most: that the devil was an angel and, having apostatized, he persuaded as many angels as possible to fall away with himself; and these, even to the present time, are called his angels" (Fundamental Doctrines 1:Preface:6 [inter A.D. 220-230]).
Two things: Article up and I'm taking a break
Check out my latest on CatholicDaily - YouTube Evangelists
Also, I am likely going to take a break. My son is two months old and it has proven difficult to get to my computer for anything other than work. I expect that will last another month or two.
Stopping a heritage of sexual sin
I added the post Stopping a heritage of sexual sin
to the Catholic Dads blog
Gents. I would like to get some input from other Catholic dads -- especially the dads of boys.
Many of us come from checkered backgrounds. There is a reason that there are many ministries to deal with sexual sin aimed at men. Satan attacks us very strongly in this manner and very little of what comes to us in the form of regular mass media assists us in any direction except TOWARDS sin. In my own life I was most affected by the air of relativism that was permeated throughout my public school education. By the grace of God, I came around, but not without injury that I wish I had avoided altogether. More ...
Article up at CatholicDaily.org
Yours truly has an article up at CatholicDaily.orgGetting more out of St. Blogs
The editor added a few links to the end of my article that I have found of great use. As a matter of fact I am strongly considering changing to Google reader because there are so many fantastic features available.
I have a test block on the right titled "..." (scroll WAY down) which are the most recent posts from my favorite blogs. It is ordered strangely right now because I just added all of my favorites to Google Reader via the OPML export from Bloglines. I MAY remove my Bloglines blogroll and replace it with that. That way it will be constantly changing but my favorite bloggers will remain there. Its a fresh blogroll.
Anyway, time has been limited recently. I will perform some more blog maintenance in the next few days including adding Catholic Dads in its rightful place of honor in the Connecting block.
So shoot me ... I found a new toy ... Google reader is in
If you are a Firefox user please, do yourself a favor ... install ALL of the followingGreasemonkey
- you should already have this right? Stylish
With Stylish you can clean up Weather Underground. Go to the page and right click on the stylish icon. Follow the directions. You'll be glad you did.Google Reader Theme
- Download and follow the instructions (requires Stylish)
If you use Gmail - Mailto Compose In GMail
Cardinal blames the 60s for Catholic Church abuse
Voters 10 Commandments - Philippines
Some in this country would come unhinged at this voters guide -- issued by bishops, not Catholic Answers mind you'Ten Commandments' for voters issued by Church
1. Promote and defend Life conception up to natural death. You shall not have false values that degrade the dignity of life and the welfare of the family, the basic unit of society.
2. You shall not compromise your pro-life and pro-family principles in your dialogue with and in selecting candidates. You shall not bow down to immoral, corrupt and inept candidates and vote them to office. Our life, our family and our country are too precious to be entrusted to such people.
3. You shall not take your vote in vain. You shall not sell it for a price or for money. You shall not vote without scrutinizing the candidate's track record both in public and private life.
4. You shall not vote for candidates that are in favor of legalizing absolute divorce and are themselves not faithful to their own marriage and family.
5. You shall not vote for candidates that are for legalization of euthanasia or mercy killing and are not caring for the older persons and the sick.
6. You shall not vote for candidates that are for legalization of abortion and any form of abortifacients. You shall not vote for candidates that advocate for reproductive rights and support contraceptive use and sterilization as a means for population control.
7. You shall not vote for candidates that promote sex education that is focused on contraceptive use and emphasize "safe sex' rather than moral values and developing virtues.
8. You shall not vote for candidates that advocate same-sex unions and the legalization of same-sex marriage in the guise of anti-discrimination.
9. You shall not vote candidates that sell our country's future to foreign and elite interest, concerned with their vested interest to the destruction of our environment and natural resources, and disregard the plight of the poor.
10. You shall not vote for candidates that are corrupt, steal from the government, that are insensitive to our people's demand and opinion; that are undemocratic, unjust and unpatriotic in their governance and programs. True development is the upliftment of the lives of the least of our brethren and the enjoyment of justice, freedom and peace.
Science too narrow to explain creation
A small experiment
Every once in a while B16 says something and there is a trickle of articles immediately following. They aren't negative, they are simply relaying what he said. Eventually this turns into a barrage of articles and editorials slamming him.
Since I saw this trickle last night, I wanted to mention it:'Science too narrow to explain creation' - Pope
Pope Benedict, elaborating his views on evolution for the first time as Pontiff, says science has narrowed the way life's origins are understood and Christians should take a broader approach to the question.
The Pope also says the Darwinist theory of evolution is not completely provable because mutations over hundreds of thousands of years cannot be reproduced in a laboratory.
But Benedict, whose remarks were published today in Germany in the book Schoepfung und Evolution , praised scientific progress and did not endorse creationist or "intelligent design" views about life's origins.
Lets see if it turns into a media circus claiming that the Catholic Church is opposed to science. My guess? .... get ready for the Galileo parade "proving" the Church hates science ...
So are Catholics advertising for the Episcopal Church?
“A really cool church”
“It is plausible that the all-male priesthood has caused some Catholic women to convert to the Episcopal Church to be ordained”
Cool, hip, modern, "relevant" (at least their definition) or true?
As far as I can tell true is always the most relevant and as a Catholic true is as the Church has ALWAYS taught. I may be dense but I really have a hard time understanding how JP2 didn't put the nail in the coffin of the womens ordination debate when he clearly stated that the Church does not have the authority to do so and the teaching is binding on the faithful.
Happy Easter and Welcome Home Converts!!!
HE IS RISEN INDEED and WELCOME HOME!!! Approximately 150,000 people
(estimate**) entered the Catholic Church this Easter in the United States. -- **I have seen estimates as high as 200,000
On that note .... Occasionally I hear this --
"I've never heard of anyone converting to Catholicism, only the other way around"Well .... here are a few:
Bobby Jindal (Louisiana congressman, candidate for governor), Robert Novak (conservative columnist and television commentator), Senator Sam Brownback (candidate for President), Jeb Bush (former governor of Florida, brother of George W Bush), Dorothy Day (social activist), Thomas Merton (writer), Malcolm Muggeridge (British journalist, author, satirist, media personality), Ronald Knox (Oxford movement) Dave Brubeck (jazz musician), Sir Alec Guinness (actor most known for his Obi Wan Kenobi role in Star Wars), Clare Boothe Luce (editor, playwright, politician, journalist, and diplomat), John Howard Griffin (of "Black Like Me" fame), John Henry Newman (Anglican, founder of Oxford Movement), Edith Stein (philosopher, a Carmelite nun, martyr), G. K. Chesterton (writer), Elizabeth Ann Seton (), Gary Cooper (actor), Walker Percy (writer), Oscar Wilde (playwright, novelist, poet, and short story writer), John Wayne (actor), Evelyn Waugh (British writer), Graham Greene (English novelist, playwright, short story writer, travel writer and critic), Edith Sitwell (British poet and critic), Alex Jones (Pentacostal pastor converted and took many of his congregants with him into the Church), Scott Hahn (),Now you have.
J. Budziszewski (Evangelical thinker, philosophy professor at UT-Austin), Norma McCorvey (Roe from Roe v Wade, current pro-life activist), Israel Zolli - (Chief Rabbi of Rome during the Second World War)
In reading about some of these, particularly the political ones, people seem to think that folks have nefarious reasons for converting.
Blosser has an excellent Notable Catholic Converts
pages that includes most of these and many more.
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This new book, The Feminine Mistake by Lesley Bennett takes a hard look at the price at-home moms make when they drop out of the working world. Most of the points she mentioned on her appearance on The Today Show were expected. She makes the claim that while men are raised to expect to have to take care of themselves, too many women still expect Prince Charming to come and take care of them. The reality of today's society is quite different.
???? I didn't meet too many women like this back in my college days. So I have a question. What about women who prepare their entire lives for a career and end up in a position where they CHOOSE to stay at home? If anything I think it can be argued that some SAHMs struggle early because being what they feel they should have been all along goes against everything they were taught these days about being a woman.