Friday, May 07, 2004

South Dakota Politics

One of my more recent permalinks is Jason Van Beek's South Dakota Politics. Jason chronicles most of the political goings-on in the state, and is well worth a read. A couple of recent items are particularly worth noting.

First, in this post Jason comments on a recent Daschle campaign ad in which self-described Republicans complain about negative Republican ads against Senator Daschle. One of these fellows makes his complaint while standing in front of a cornfield in which the corn plants have tasseled. Now, to those of us who don't do agriculture, that might not mean anything. But to those who know corn, there is something significant present, and Jason explains it for us:
    Corn plants don't tassel until late summer, meaning that this Daschle ad, or at least the segment with Steve Grubbrud, was in the can almost a year ago. It leads one to ask exactly what negative ad Steve Grubbrud was upset about at the time.

In another post, Jason discusses a recent Roll Call ad in which we find that Daschle has raised three times more money from corporations than has John Thune, his Republican challenger. Jason contrasts that fact with this statement from a Daschle spokesman, made when the U.S. Chamber of Commerce endorsed Thune back in February: "Tom Daschle has taken on special interests for years, so we are not shocked when they target him for defeat." Jason comments appropriately: "Yes, Daschle has taken on the special interests so vigorously that they give him three times more money than they give to John Thune."

Well said.

During my recent blogging hiatus (work took me out of town for a bit) I visited Annie's blog After abortion (it's one of my permalinks under Lord of the Rings). Annie attended the abortion rights rally on Sunday, April 25th as a member of Silent No More, an awareness group which seeks to educate the public about the effects of abortion on women. Annie and many others stood (many with signs) in silence as the march passed by them, and the abuse that she and others dealt with is truly unbelievable.

Read her account here.
The Ordination of Women

One of my recent new permalinks is the blog of a pseudonymous systematic theologian, the Old Oligarch. I discovered OO over a year ago, but was lazy in finally getting a link up (what's new, right?).

One of his best posts (we do know his gender) is an argument against the ordination of women. Now, I have to warn you: by blog standards, it's a long piece. But trust me: it's well worth the read.
Ecclesial Tyrant?

Apropos of the recent discussions concerning John Kerry and other pro-abortion rights politicians possibly (or actually) being refused communion, a number of Catholic bloggers have pointed to the actions of Archbishop Joseph Rummel, the archbishop of New Orleans in the early 60's. In 1962, he excommunicated three Catholics who opposed his efforts to desegregate Catholic schools. What did they do in response? Gave speeches, organized rallies, wrote letters to the major local newspaper, and withheld church contributions.

Hmm... I wonder what those who up in arms about the statements of some bishops about refusing communion to Kerry et al would say in response to this? Would they complain that Archbishop Rummel was blurring the line between church and state, or that he was putting his nose in places it doesn't belong, or that this was just another example of an intolerant, un-pastoral Catholic hierarch? Somehow, I doubt it.

(Thanks -- in order of my seeing it mentioned -- to Stuart Buck, Bill Cork, and Dale Price.)
Round X

The official dialogue in the U.S. between Lutheran and Catholic scholars recently completed its tenth round of discussion, this time focusing on the structures and ministries of the church. The Common Statement of the text can be found here for anyone who is interested.