Saturday, March 25, 2017
...why do you think poseurs pose?Because they want to be invited to the dominion of the real, an almost magical zone of unselfed sensation, and they know their very desire for it disqualifies them. Lipsyte
Everything about the SW-Ohio-Brooksville cult, from its fictitious "dogma" of mortally sinful una-cum Masses to the intellectual failings of its undereducated "clergy," is contrived. Surrounding whatever the cult masters do, there's the noisome aura of self-conscious theatricality. It's as though they see themselves always on stage aping some one-act farce before the peanut gallery of a Podunk vaudeville house, where the lowbrow audience is too simple-minded to discriminate between appearance and reality.
The inbreeding cult "clergy" apparently regard themselves as the protagonists of their own unheroic mythological drama: their objective is not to be authentic but to be admired. Yet when the curtain rings down and greasepaint comes off, these self-obsessed mediocrities resemble nothing recognizable as genuine clergy of the Latin Church. Instead, they form the Constitutive Other, aliens to real Catholic identity, eternally outside the network of the Church Militant. Frighteningly, they are the non-Catholic Self.
Their Otherness doesn't make them exceptional, as they'd have you believe. Quite the contrary, in terms of educational attainment and intellectual gifts, they're all-washed-up third-rate act. None is an honest-to-goodness churchman. Each just plays one on the boards during the weekly extravaganzas. But since most people, even many cultists, acknowledge the deceptive self-presentation, there's no cause to rehearse all Tony Baloney's errors in Latin, Tradzilla's linguistic howlers, and "One-Hand Dan's" liturgical absurdities. Nor need we remind our readership of Tradistan's sham "schools," pretend religious, and daffy rules rooted in a never-existing 1950s of a fevered imagination.
While most people can detect the dissimulations of scholarship or general education once exposed, they find it harder to discern the troubling affectations masked by the cult masters' "preaching." The "sermon" format is an ideal means to amplify pretense. Unlike correct Latinity, choice English diction, or liturgical orthopraxis (which demand specialized training in order to assess their authenticity), evaluating the content of the average, dumb-downed Sunday monologue is something most of the faithful trust they can do on their own.
To get a favorable response, all the churchly thespians have to do is dress in the right costume, thunder their message with conviction, and mouth something more or less consistent with what psychological weaklings think is Christian. Exacerbating the culties' gullibility is the Catholic cognitive bias that assumes anybody in a Roman collar practices and believes what he preaches. Spell bound by the Sunday matinee performances, trad yokels are happy to dismiss the ominous signs of imposture and go with their usually-wrong gut.
The wily cult kingpins intuitively grasp that such witlessness is their ticket to the big time, their invitation to squat in the "dominion of the real." There, in disguise, they imagine they can conceal the naked self-interest coiled behind crudely wrought masks of false piety. Just fill the acrid cult-center air with Catholic-sounding platitudes or threats, and nobody's going to look beyond the cartoonish image. The alchemy of posturing transmutes, however implausibly, ragtag personae into "priests" or "bishops," tricked-out Quonset huts into "churches," and tribal fetish objects into sacred artifacts.
Insofar as by means of their "sermons" the cult masters lay claim to ownership of Catholic vocabulary, they're shielded from external efforts to cut short their grotesque masquerade. All they have to say to their naïve followers is, "Our enemies don't understand Catholic principles." Without a second thought, the cultlings willingly suspend disbelief, often in violation of what little sensus catholicus they may have possessed.
Quoting a bookshelf of moral theologians by tractate and subsection won't move cult zombies to see through the "clerical" humbugs: Shock of recognition comes only if you have the right background. To the average cult rite-trash, moral theology is as impenetrable as good Latin, edited English prose, and liturgiology. To their ears, the grounded teachings of the Church's approved authors aren't nearly as Catholic as the brimstone-reeking content of the weekly harangues spat from cult pulpits.
Therefore, in order to unmask these disqualified poseurs, you have to make cultlings examine their "clergy's" behavior through a secular lens, albeit one with close affinities to solid Catholic ethical principles. Otherwise they won't — or, to be more precise, they can't —get the message. In next week's post, we'll offer a very good example, one that should turn on the house lights, put an end to the cheap histrionics, and send the audience out to look for a real Catholic life, even if it is to be found at home alone.
Saturday, March 18, 2017
bestiaries. Books very popular in the 11th, 12th, and 13th centuries, concerning accounts of the supposed habits and peculiarities of animals, which, with the legendary lore connected with them, served as texts for devotional homilies. They were founded on the old Physiologi...[which featured] allegories concerning animals.... Benét's The Reader's Encyclopedia (1948)
Editor's Note: For years we've been mocking Hoodoo Dan's obsession with the cult's familiar spirits Caravaggio, Puccini, and Vivavldi (the red cat that mysteriously went M.I.A. in 2009). Until recently, we had attributed to bad taste or poor formation his grotesque "kitty chronicles" of gore and savagery.
That all changed in late February when a commenter let us in on a little secret he or she had learned long ago: His Circumambiency is
not really talking about his cats [;] he uses them as stand-ins for people he's targeting...He explained it to me once but I cannot recall after more than 15 years. He either said a saint did the same or somebody else in the Trad world.So, what the Readers thought was loony, cat-fancier babbling is in actuality a kind of fable or exemplum.
Since PL has an English-lit major on the editorial team, the Readers thought it would be great fun to interpret Dannie's creature capers in light of this eye-opening revelation of the method behind what seemed like simple madness (or Tourette's).
You, too, can join in the fun. In each post of this new series, we'll quote verbatim a couple of "One-Hand's" accounts, each followed by our re-wording. Then you can register your own interpretation(s) in the COMMENTS section. Everybody'll have a rousing good time, and maybe Trad Nation might learn what's really on the Mitered Maggot's narrow mind.
You, too, can join in the fun. In each post of this new series, we'll quote verbatim a couple of "One-Hand's" accounts, each followed by our re-wording. Then you can register your own interpretation(s) in the COMMENTS section. Everybody'll have a rousing good time, and maybe Trad Nation might learn what's really on the Mitered Maggot's narrow mind.
Animal Story I
Caravaggio prudently decamped to the roof on Monday, prognosticating coyotes on the prowl. We always fear lest they go after the cats, but that night they contented themselves with the contents of a garbage can instead. The beasts fell to fighting over its offerings, screaming in their high pitched way, right outside my window. Rather unworthy to be squabbling over trash, I thought. But they are scavengers. It was a frightful noise. Fr. Cekada at first thought they were raccoons. But Fr. McGuire, an Ohio boy, recognized their bark. The garbage cans are now secured, and the cats have gone back to mousing. Caravaggio just now presented me a juicy one, but Puccini had most of his for breakfast. He couldn’t resist.Oh, boy, what a menagerie Dannie has! Feral cats, marauding coyotes, transgressive raccoons, and bloody mouse-prey assembled amid reeking mounds of $GG garbage. It's an exterminator's nightmare, that's for sure.
But what can it all mean?
In our view, the dislocated Caravaggio represents a beleaguered Wee Dan yearning to be left alone so he can feed with impunity upon the helpless mice, which stand for the few bamboozled Gerties still under his complete control. Obviously, the vocalizing coyotes are his critics, in particular PL, while the trespassing raccoons symbolize the opportunistic, disloyal traddies who sometimes assist at $GG "Ma$$e$" but refuse to swallow the una-cum lie — and won't fill up the collection bucket.
Here, then, is our re-write of the paragraph:
Dannie went into protection mode as PL and other blogs threatened to drive more victims out of the tumbledown SW Ohio cult center. Investigative bloggers and tell-all posters have dug up a lot of dirt about the cult masters. What they've found is all over the internet for TradWorld to see. Their posts have grown so loud, in fact, that Dannie can't ignore them any longer, particularly since some originate so close to home. As the blogs feed off the now-dead cult in their crusade to warn decent Catholics to stay away, "One Hand" is frightened out of his half-wit. At first, Tony Baloney thought all the criticism was coming from the many tight-fisted attendees who quietly assist on occasion at the area's SSPX and FSSP chapels. However, Lurch, who heard all the complaints about Dannie and Checkie when he was just a whippersnapper, assured him the revelations were coming from the outside. Insofar as only the depraved clung to His Malevolency after the 2009 $GG $chool $candal, he mistakenly supposes the criticism will have no impact on his enablers. Therefore, in a fit of self-delusion, he's resolved to keep on preying upon the Gerties for everything they've got until the last one runs off screaming. He can't resist Checkie's demands for more frivolous, expensive goodies, like a rectory basement video-production studio.
Animal Story II
Last week Puccini was in a bad way, moaning in the bushes after Thanksgiving. But he’s a Zen cat, and never complains, so I knew something was wrong. Katie kindly took him to the vet, and it turns out he was thrice bitten (a church-invading raccoon, perhaps?) and required stiches, a partial anesthetic and an antibiotic. He’s pretty much back to normal, but is prudently sleeping quite a bit to speed his recovery. So, like Blessed Martin de Porres, I was operating a double clinic over Advent Sunday. Caravaggio visited Puccini once, but otherwise kept up his patrols. Especially in the kitchen.As noted above, Erroneous Antonius is "Zen cat" Puccini, while the "church-invading" raccoons are the cult's occasional visitors who come for the show but refuse to drink the tainted una-cum Kool-Aid. We think this is what the Wee One wants to tell us:
Malformed Checkie's undeserved renown as a "scholar and theologian" has been thoroughly debunked. He's crying the blues about the exposure of his shocking blunders, in particular his perverse translation of infallible papal teaching: It's all out there on Front Street for Traddielandia to ridicule. Three different groups have made his ignorance public: university-credentialed bloggers, fellow trad clergy, and skilled opponents who write books and articles in academic prose (rather than grind out chintzy, amateur videos like the Cheeseball does). For the time being, Tony Baloney's been lying low, vainly hoping traddies will forget how wrong he's been (and how bad his Latin is). Seeing that Bonehead Tone incompetently defended one-handed priestly orders, Deacon Dan feels obliged to coddle him. He can't do it often, though, for his real job is policing Gertie Gals to make sure they keep on catering free meals to the bone-idle $GG "Fathers."
. . . . . . . . . .
Well, folks, that's PL's take on the meaning of "Doctor Dolittle Dan's" critter code for these two cat tales. But others out there in cyberspace, who've known His Inscrutability longer than the Readers, may be better equipped to tease out his messages. Why not sharpen your hermeneutical blades and take a stab at an interpretation of your own? You can post it in our COMMENTS section below. Everyone here agrees there's more than one way to skin a cat.
Saturday, March 11, 2017
There is not a fiercer hell than the failure in a great object. Keats
Last week, "The Bishop's (?) Corner" virtually proclaimed $GG's "Fat $unday" an unqualified triumph of party-planning. You remember "Fat $unday," don't you? That's a rollicking Quinquagesima blast where potbellied gluttons gorge on dense, flat, burned griddle cakes drowning under a viscous deluge of high-fructose syrup and trans-fatty-acid-rich margarine, all the while anticipating postprandial BINGO. (See our post from February 25 here.)
Take a look at "One Hand's" button-poppingly-proud review of his sordid fête:
I pray for many good fruits, strong friendships and spiritual encouragement to come from last week’s wonderful Social Sunday. Wow! What a success! A great combination of hunger and free food and convenience really packed ’em in, as never before. Brilliant idea! I regret I could not be with you, but as pastor I am so gratified and grateful to all who gave and worked, and to those who took some time to stay and participate. Many thanks! Let’s do it again?...
As usual, "One Hand Dan's" musings require the Readers' deeper analysis to puzzle out the message. And like all things Dannie, there's as much to learn from what he didn't say as from what he did. Laying aside the question of whether his claim of stunning "success" is true or not — by his own admission, he wasn't present to witness the eating orgy — let's consider the absence of comment on the "Lenten Supper" of "beans, ravioli, and mac and cheese" earlier promoted for Friday, March 3.
Well, we are, in a way, doing the same thing, these Fridays of Lent. Great suppers are on offer. Free! Emboldened by the pancakes, perhaps you would like to check it out? Come to Mass and stay for supper, or come for something to eat and fortify yourself for Stations.
Believe it or not, PL can understand how Gerties might've tarried for some over-flipped "emboldening panncakes" following one of the (possibly simulated) $unday Masses. After all, the rite trash were already loitering at the cult dump. So, then, why not grab the rug-rats violently by their jug ears and trudge over to the grimy social hall to hang on a freebie feedbag before hitchhiking back to a roach-infested hovel?
Actually Dannie's Fat $unday eat-a-thon was a civic blessing in disguise: With the free chow, Ma didn't have to rustle up some grub for the starving kee-yuds when they all got home. She could then join Pa in a few shop-lifted beers, thereby postponing the usual bloody fight over his chugging a whole six-pack without sharing. Thus "$ocial $unday" kept any number of 10-16's from crackling over the nosey neighbors' police scanners.
That's a "success" in our book!
But Friday, March 3, is an altogether different matter. Missing was the "convenience." To sink their toothless, diseased gums into the colon-clogging repast, the Gerties would've first had to ride over to the dirty $GG industrial park. That would've entailed herding crumb-crushers already spazzin' out on a violent "sugar high" into a hot-wired pickup before swinging by the local honky-tonk to roll Pa onto the rusting flatbed.
"Wow!" Not likely.
Accordingly, based on the "combination" of that insight and Dannie's silence about the March 3 turnout, the Readers conjecture the Friday feed was as unsuccessful as Ash Wednesday, which, as Dirtbag Dan confessed, had been a BUST (explaining why he's almost begging them to "come for something to eat" on Fridays):
Ash Wednesday was sparse, as it was the previous two years, due perhaps to bad weather.$GG had scheduled THREE Ash-Wednesday Masses to round up the cult zombies: 7:00 A.M. (a "Special Workers' Mass, no sermon!"), 11:20 A.M., and 5:45 P.M. In all, the cult masters distributed ashes at FIVE different times throughout the day. Yet still attendance was "sparse." Forget Weatherman Dan's lame meteorological excuse. If you don't get your ashes when there're opportunities galore, you're not going to show up for Friday "$tations," not even for "free food" smothered with runny layers of low-fiber process cheese.
These folks really don't want to be there. There's no motive to "check it out." They're not about to answer Dannie's prayers for "wonderful," wallet-emptying generosity. If Gerties who've been able to ditch the repo man went anywhere that Friday night, they probably made a beeline for one of the nearby Novus-Ordo parish fish-fries, where the food is appetizing, and normal-looking table mates sport clean fingernails.*
Let's cut to the chase, shall we? Don't you think His Egocentricity would've loudly tooted his own horn about a good turnout if there'd been a crowd that Friday? Epecially after he admitted the Ash-Wednesday fiasco. Even supposing he drafted his "Bishop's (?) Corner" on Thursday, there was still plenty of time to insert a line or two before Saturday evening's publication. Furthermore, if Friday, March 3 been "a success" worthy of an exclamation point, then why did Dannie go to such lengths to assure Gerties the "Great suppers...on offer" — "Free!" — on "Fridays of Lent" are the "same thing" as his "brilliant idea" of Fat $unday?
At PL we haven't been bitten by the gambling bug, but if we had to place a bet, we'd wager that the first of Dannie's "Friday Nights in Lent" was an embarrassing flop. But, then, how could it have resulted otherwise without B-I-N-G-O?
At least the coagulated globs of sticky, starchy leftovers must've gone into the "traveling Fathers'" fridge, where the scavenging field mice could feast to their little vermin-hearts' content.
* The cultlings in SW Ohio are blessed with a fabulous seasonal fish-fry scene. As Wee Dan might say, "check it out" here. The one at nearby All Saints on Montgomery Road looks pretty tasty to us Lenten-fish-fry enthusiasts:"Fried Cod, Grilled Salmon, Grilled Tilapia, Fish Tacos, Cheese Pizza, French Fries, Baked Potatoes, Sweet Potato Fries, Cole Slaw, Tossed Salad, Applesauce, Assorted Desserts." From now on, Gerties, just say no to that $GG heart-attack-on-a-paper-plate hog slop and sit down to scrumptious traditional Lenten fare at an area church near you. You and your gastrointestinal tract will be glad you traded up, even if it isn't "Free!"
Saturday, March 4, 2017
Pack your bags and get away! / If you spend every cent, you can move out in a tent—/ It's movin' day! Charlie Poole
For those of you who missed the announcement two weeks ago about Big Don's ignominious loss of the Arizona chapel, we'll recap what we know. It's the outcome PL's been dreaming about for many years: at last, the substantial assets of the chapel are safe.
Tradzilla has tried long and hard to take over the place. As you may recall, way back in 2011, after his big $30K plan fizzled, Big Don boasted in a pesthouse newsletter, “we are very hopeful and confident that our relationship to [Our Lady of the Sun Chapel, Arizona] will become permanent.”
With the assistance of Divine Providence, a vigilant lay board thwarted the Donster's plot. In spite of the definitive rebuff, he continued to play the hireling, doubtlessly in order to (1) keep his foot in the door, hoping perhaps to work surreptitiously to get his way, and (2) not lose needed revenue from staffing the chapel. Over the years he never gave up, notwithstanding his inveterate hostility toward lay trusteeship. At length, all that his scheming earned him was an eviction notice. The grim priory princesses along with his so-called priest — "ordained" BTW by "One-Hand Dan"!! — should be skulking back like unwanted foundlings to the fetid Swampland compound by the end of June 2017.
With Tradzilla's exit, the CMRI will, according to a 2/17/17 letter from the Pivster, "have complete responsibility in all spiritual matters and the lay board for the temporal affairs of the parish [sic]." Pivvy's missive interestingly reveals that CMRI "sisters" will operate the chapel's school. In addition, sources tell us, the board distributed an information sheet to explain the transition. Under the new arrangement, the chapel will have a valid "priest" who speaks intelligible English. One immediate benefit of the deal is the laity won't have to strain their ears and scratch their heads during the Sunday sermon. (Plus they'll have fewer doubts about the validity of the sacraments they receive.)
Although this turn of events is joyous news, we dare not think Our Lady of the Sun is out of the crosshairs yet. Between now and June, a lot of undermining can be done. In fact, according to the scuttlebutt, the cult's minions are already hard at work. That's to be expected. Tradzilla, ever the bad winner and even sorer loser, most likely won't go meekly. It's a wounded beast's nature to bite back with savage fury. While his ego may only chafe at the pink slip, the prospect of never being able to control the chapel's considerable assets must be the source of unbearable anguish. You may not realize it, but a lot more than bragging rights was riding on a takeover.
PL expects there'll be an underground campaign to discourage chapel members from sending their children to the school or assisting at Mass. In concert with that effort, certain families will be pressured to pull up stakes and relocate to the Swampland. (They've already managed to dupe one deluded household into moving: like most traddies, the family will have to learn the hard way.) All in all, though, any sabotage attempt will have little impact.
The board is certainly aware of what's going on and is sure to take pre-emptive action to counter the Donster's ploys. (Tip: the Toady cannot endure direct confrontation — he'll fold like a discount-store card table if squeezed between Big Don and resolute board leadership.) Moreover, the chapel has a nice financial cushion to weather any dip in weekly collections until participation levels return to normal. Who knows? They may well increase. As a matter of fact, PL is sure they will.
For that reason, the sole unknown arising from Big Don's ouster has nothing to do with Arizona. (The board's been through worse and managed to survive quite well, thank you.) What we really should be asking ourselves is how this development will impact Junior's consecration. Without fresh cash streams, PL doesn't see a way for Tradzilla to exit Brooksville so he can devote himself to his next adventure (er, uh, ahem, "apostolate," we meant to say). Heretofore, all our speculation had assumed he'd be slithering out of the swamp since two "bishops" in one tiny, family-run cult would be like two paramount chiefs in the same savage tribe: one of 'em's gottta go.
Yet, at the same time, we have to wonder whether Junior or his pop will brook a delay of birthright. Born in 1978, the Kid will turn 39 this year. That's nine long years after the Anointed One reached the canonical age for the episcopacy. The insignificant Long-Island Jellyfish and the much-disparaged Pivmeister wrangled miters in their early thirties, while "One-Hand Dan" captured his at 42. Will the Kid have to wait like Big Don until his fifties before his noggin's "armed with the horns of both Testaments"? In other words, will he always be a bridesmaid and never a bride?
We don't think so!
Junior's family's sunk too much money into the Swampland sect to wait much longer for their scion to fulfill his destiny. He's more than ready to run the whole show, including the "seminary" (LOL). There's already been loose talk that "he won't be a [simple] priest for much longer." More significantly, the Big 3 élite are eager to get out of the spotlight, get back on social media, and get those TV's into the air-conditioned house where they belong — flickering away in front of the La-Z-Boy throughout Brooksville's humid subtropical nights.
The Arizona failure has been a huge embarrassment anyway. We've been told Big Don was strongly cautioned against venturing out West in the first place. With this loss of face, there's no reason to keep the Donster around any longer, particularly since keeping him means taking delivery on all Dannie's baggage. (Bad for the corporate image, you understand.)
Say what you will about the Big 3, but they are experienced businessmen. The time's right to cut their losses and get out of a bad investment. Easing the decision will be the comforting assurance of having on hand an immediate replacement for the Donster —one of their own, not a breathless Flushing Rat driven from the salubrious desert back home to the steaming swamp, with his whacked tail quivering between his buckling knees.
Saturday, February 25, 2017
The pancake bell rings, the pancake bell, tri-lill my hearts... Dekker*
Last week PL reported on "One-Hand Dan's" strategy of season-long, mandatory-attendance "social events" in a doomed effort to revive his cultlings' flagging enthusiasm for $GG side shows. As you can see above with your very own eyes, the Lenten assault on Gertie pocketbooks and minds begins February 26, Quinquagesima $unday 2017.
Looks as though he's pulled out all the stops, too.
Like a sleaze-bag promoter of dicey vacation timeshares deals, Li'l Daniel's recruiting the suckers with cheap free snacks and trashy gaming thrills. According to last week's "Corner," attendees at this kick-off event are ordered to "plan to stop by ... to eat a pancake or two." (Man, oh, man, isn't he generous! Plus the chutzpah's breathtaking: he makes their plans for them and then sets stingy limits to what they may ingest. Why couldn't he be prodigal and invite 'em to a stack or two of rubbery flap jacks?)
You can tell Plannin' Dan's worried the Gerties suspect he's only interested in their money. In the same "Corner," he went out of his way to make a disclaimer: "This is a fun raiser, not a fund raiser...." If you believe that, we've got a lovely bridge in Brooklyn to sell you.
What about the Bingo game at 12:45? Is everyone going to play for funzies? If that's the case, nobody'll show up, Dan's command notwithstanding. As every cultie juvenile delinquent can tell you, gambling demands prizes — preferably a great, big cash jackpot. No bucks = no fun. So, then, where's the money coming from? The $unday collection baskets? Or will Bingo cards be "available" for a "donation"? And, if so, how much of the "donation" money will make it to the pot? Will all the cash go there, or will $GG first take a hefty cut?
The "Corner" described Dirtbag Dan's cult carnival as "a little purposeful church fun...fitting for Shrovetide or Mardi Gras."** Huh? "Church fun"??? That's a Bergoglian contradictio in adjecto, if we ever saw one! Perhaps he isn't aware that, historically, the Church condemned and endeavored to eliminate the wanton merry-making and triumphant libertinism attendant to the excessively wild days of thinly disguised pagan revelry culminating with mardi gras.
Carnival frolic, in origin and in practice, is by definition opposed to the sacred. Accordingly, it earned its relentless persecution on the part of ecclesiastical authorities. Yet here we have a sede "bishop" (LOL) embracing lustily the transgressive, carnal spirit Holy Mother Church labored for centuries to eradicate.
Instead of exhorting Gerties to set aside an afternoon of quiet recollection in solemn preparation for the onset of the penitential season, His Conviviality purposefully distracts them from godly thoughts with alluring games of chance, tingling whispers of licensed overindulgence, and titillating promises of good times rollin' on throughout Lent. Outrageously, he's reduced Quinquagesima at $GG to a "dimanche gras" (= "fat $unday") of frivolous abandon.
Why, the pious Catholic asks, would "One Hand" do such a thing on the Sunday before Ash Wednesday, making a mockery of the Roman Church's centuries-long opposition? What greater good could ever result from this unholy inversion of traditional values?
We think we have the answer in clues Dannie himself let slip. Notice the apparent typo in the ad reproduced above: "Games and cards available for a causal good time." The Readers are always on the lookout for Dannie's frequent linguistic faux pas, but this isn't one of them. We definitely don't think he meant "casual."
There is a very specific cause that this "purposeful church fun" supports, namely, "One-Hand Dan." If the folks don't show up for this year's Lenten bacchanals, he's at risk of losing them, their dollars, and their free chow to his stiff competition in SW Ohio. So the objective of this gravely offensive hard-partying is clear: shore up Dan's moribund enterprise before it expires.
From a cult-building point of view, Dannie's survival instincts are spot on. Frequent, large-group activities centered on a central, domineering personality are useful to increase cultish solidarity. Moreover, they make participants dependent on each other in order to find meaning in their empty lives. In this sense, all Dan's "$ocial $unday" gluttony and puerile amusement*** is not much different in aim from some shady corporate team-building exercises. There the lesson is that only a cohesive group submitting to an all-controlling head-honcho can give transcendent purpose to otherwise routine activities.
Sustaining the sense of commonality in both religious cults and secular organizations is trust. It's the magic elixir that bewitches otherwise normal people into subordinating their own and their families' interests to the objectives of the group under its overreaching, self-obsessed guru. Without this trust, not only will such activities as Dannie has scheduled for Lent 2017 fail in their purpose, they'll have the opposite effect.
The disaffected Gerties'll actively resist the crude effort to manipulate their time, their attitudes, and their money. The frightened, twitching unfortunates who hobble into one or two of the "social events" will gravitate to other wretches of a similar mind to share their resentment. Thus $GG's Lenten socials will produce a virulently subversive fifth column within SW Ohio cult.
It's time for Dannie to face the music. The mojo's vanished from $GG. Only a few, pathetic degenerates still believe he's got what it takes to direct their lives. By now, most traditional Catholics don't for a second think he's a broadly cultured churchman cut from the same cloth as pre-Vatican II clergy. Many aren't sure whether he possesses valid holy orders, and everyone is familiar with his innumerable educational shortcomings. Most importantly, all TradNation is fed up with his morbid, weekly stupid cat stories. All that keeps Gerties at the cult center on $undays is the common human aversion to change, even when conditions are almost unbearable.
But when they become absolutely unbearable, that's when upheaval breaks out. The 2009 $GG $chool $candal was too much for the really decent people. Wincing under the sting of conscience, they had to get out. The years following that first revolt brought with them an onslaught of revelations about the cult masters and their inadequacies, revelations that no one but the most depraved can ignore. Avoidance of "One Hand's" Lenten side-shows is a sure sign the culties are restive again.
Tortured by a deep moral unease with their scheming masters, Gerties are steadily opting out. For many, Li'l Daniel's frantic, lead-fisted efforts this Lent to stop the sheep he's already lost from straying will be enough for them to break all ties with the diseased, dying West Chester sect.
Most cultlings with a shred of conscience left will get Dannie's number sooner or later. When it's called, then
B I N G O!
Gerties can collect their winnings: a Catholic life free from manic fundraising, uncharitable infighting, family-splitting dissension, and, most of all, incompetent play-acting. Why not enter this new life starting on February 26? Skip Wee Dan's "devil's week" carnival. Go home to prepare for a soul-purifying Lent at another area chapel. You've got lots to choose from.
Your children will remember you fondly in their prayers of thanksgiving.
* In England on Shrove Tuesday, a church-bell was rung to announce the time to make pancakes to use up eggs and milk before the Lenten fast. Dannie's just anticipating by a few days so he can ring in his Lenten galas to get everyone in a party-hearty mood.
** For someone who rails against women in skimpy clothing, we're surprised the Pecksniffian Prelataster referenced "Mardi Gras," the U.S.version of pagan excess and feathered, fleshy license. A quick look at the images on the web would make a old roué blush. And for those who think that by 2017 Carnival has lost its past sordid associations, read this excerpt from the travel brochure Postcards touting Venice's modern revival of the licentious fête:
This pre-Lent festival started in the 11th century when Venetians would wear masks to conceal their identity so that they could mix with different social classes and indulge in illicit activities, including gambling and clandestine affairs.Is that how "fellow Catholics" are supposed to "connect"?
*** With the inadequate "formation" Deficient Dannie received, he probably was never nurtured on Aristotle's Nichomachean Ethics or Aquinas's commentary on that classic. He never learned that "full happiness, then, [lies] not in childish play" (1176b27-28, our translation).
Saturday, February 18, 2017
Necessity has a stern face. Schiller
We must've gotten under Dannie's skin.
Two weeks ago PL remarked on "One-Hand Dan's" unusual request for Gertie suggestions about fund-raising and mind-control opportunities for 2017 Lent. As we reported, the sheep aren't flocking together for his "church suppers and
From the looks of it, the cult commissars aren't waiting for input (which wouldn't be forthcoming anyway). Peeved, no doubt, by PL's reading of his dilemma, His Authoritarianship has apparently decided to lay down the law, as evidenced by last week's "Bishop's (?) Corner," where he somberly put his thralls on notice:
We’re busy planning a good Lent, offering everything we can think of, at a convenient time, to make for a truly spiritual and holy “forty day fast.” Make your plans to change your plans and offer up a little extra church time. Recollections [Allow PL to translate "One Hand's" stark Cultspeak for you:
ReCollections??, Ed.], Masses, devotions, Stations for adults and children and even some suppers and social events are on the calendar and in the planning stages. But pray to be generous.
No more surveys. No more waiting for the tongue-tied laity to pipe up. No more Mr. Nice Guy, pouring sugar and syrup all over his cynical pretty-pleases. The forbidding cult Thought Police have gone full steam ahead with their own plans to serve up a smörgåsbord of money-milking, gut-stuffing events at all hours. N.B. The Gerties aren't invited to attend. They're commanded to be there, no matter what else they have on their schedule: "Make your plans to change your plans," Bossman Dan harshly demands with the iron-handed resolve of a banana-republic despot whose back's up against the wall.
No excuses accepted! He doesn't give a refrigerator rat's toenail how tired the Gerties are after a long day of demeaning, low-pay work or futile wrangling with out-of-control kids off their unaffordable meds. They'd better make an appearance! Dour Dan's asking-days are over, got that? He needs Gertie greenbacks!
Everybody —"adults and children" — is expected to show up for cult "social events" during the "forty day fast," which, counterintuitively but not surprisingly, has "even some suppers" calendared. (We'll bet it's more than "some": Lent at the cult isn't Lent without plenty of free eats for the ever-peckish "prelate.") There'll be no question about who's got to fatten the "clergy" — and the vacation fund: Dannie stiffly ordered the Gerties to "pray to be generous," which means they have to come up with extra cash and do all the catering.
Woe to the indigent cultling family that doesn't meet His Inflexibility's hardline standards of generosity toward himself. If he doesn't collect all the money he craves this season, that means Ma, Pa, Meemaw, and Papaw didn't "pray to be generous" as Dannie enjoined. And if they failed to "pray to be generous," then, we imagine, they surely aren't worthy of Prudently-Dubious Dan's "sacraments." (💀WARNING TO GERTIES: Telling His Exigency your prayers weren't answered will get you nowhere!)
PL's going to venture a wild guess that the cult masters'll be taking attendance at all these activities. Our advice to the cowering Gerts who feel compelled attend is to keep an eye on the flinty "principal" and his wife (to see if one or both are keeping a record of who showed up). Try to observe whether they've got a little book where they surreptitiously take names and count family members present. In addition, when the collection plate comes around, watch the usher to check whether he's keeping tabs on who gave and how much.
There will have to be a reckoning of some sort if participation in 2017's Lenten gelt -'n'-grub grab is as dismal as that of past years. Should the Gerties ignore "One Hand" again this year, then he knows it's time to throw in the towel. The conditions are already so bad that SGG has resorted to offering bingo at 12:45 p.m. on Sunday (!!), February 26. Did the cult masters decide to abolish the Third Commandment in the same way that Tony Baloney did away with the Leonine Prayers?
If Unsparing Dan's gone to all this trouble to slate a host of crypto-fundraising activities and the turnout is still low, he's going to have to make examples of some cultie cheapskates. We kid you not. He cannot — will not — allow absentees to take Double Decker® Taco Supremes® out of his mouth or filthy lucre out of his pocket. Vacation time is 'round the corner. He's determined to care for his crushing needs.
. . . . . . . . .
It's a little off track, we know, but PL can't resist commenting on a couple of serious errors recently committed by the cult kingpins. Traditional Catholics need constant reminders that these clowns are NOT AT ALL like the highly educated clergy of pre-Vatican II days. To be brutally honest, the cult masters aren't equal to the educated Novus-Ordo clergy of today. To err is human, we'll be the first to admit. But the mistakes the cult "clergy" make are unpardonable, because they're not simple slips of the pen or Spell-Check intrusions. They're the unmistakeable marks of the illiterate and unschooled.
Last week, one of you noticed Big Don's February schedule listed the 24th as the feast day of St. Matthew (!) rather than of St. Matthias. Perhaps another hand drafted the schedule. It might have been the sloppy work of one of the (so-called) high-school-graduate-only "nuns" or an uneducated lay cultling. Nonetheless, a subordinate's ignorance doesn't excuse the Donster in this case: he either failed to proofread the document, or he missed the blunder when he did read it over.
If Tradzilla, or Junior, or one of the pesthouse "professors" (LOL) is responsible for this disgraceful blunder, then the fool would merit our most severe condemnation. Anyone who's been celebrating Mass for as long as he has (or, for that matter, for as long as the Kid, Scut the Prefect, and Squirmy have) should know St. Matthew's feast day doesn't fall in February. Furthermore, such a gross error might indicate that Big Don and his "priests" aren't familiar with The Acts of the Apostles and so thought Matthias and Mathew to be one and the same.
But as head-shakingly awful as this blunder is, it doesn't match the egregiousness of Dumbo Dannie's mistakes in his Feb. 12 "Corner." They signal an ignorance more profound than not knowing the New Testament, for they present a triple threat to literacy in one sentence: (1) badly mangled prose, (2) mistranslated Latin, and (3) unfamiliarity with elementary English usage. Take a look at the mess:
... Lent itself is called for a number in Latin, Quadragesima, or forty, for the forty fasting days that comprise it.(1) The sentence, with its awkward passive and unwieldy phrasing, reads as if the English word Lent got it's name from the Latin word Quadragesima. That's impossible, as any schoolboy or schoolgirl knows. The Modern English word Lent, comes from the Old English lencten, which originally meant "springtime, spring" (compare the Modern Dutch lente). What he should have written is: "The liturgical Latin word for Lent is Quadragesima..."
(2) After stumbling over his unsure English, Li'l Daniel then obliterates his small Latin by wrongly informing Gerties that Quadragesima means "forty." Forty — quadraginta in Latin — is a cardinal, but quadragesima is an ordinal, so the correct translation is "fortieth." (The unexpressed noun that the numeral adjective quadragesima ("fortieth") modifies is dies, "day.") Real Catholic clergy know the difference.
(3) Lastly we come to the usage howler "comprise." His Inadequacy wasn't privileged to receive a university education, so he never learned this simple rule: the whole always comprises the parts; the parts compose (= constitute, make up) the whole. Thus Lent comprises forty fasting says, or forty fasting days constitute Lent, but never do "forty fasting days ... comprise [Lent]." As the redoubtable Fowler complained in Modern English Usage: "This lamentably common use of comprise as a synonym of compose or constitute is a wanton and indefensible weakening of our vocabulary."
Wantonly Wrong Dan needs to buy himself a copy of Garner's Modern American Usage or Roberts' Plain English out of this Lent's collection. Then all he'll weaken is the liturgy and the faith.
* Scholarship tells us the name Matthias (probably a shortened form of the Greek Mattathias) is a variant of the Greek form for Matthew, Matthaios, which itself represents an Aramaic Mattāi, a shorter form of the Hebrew Mattityāhû or Mattanyāhû, "gift of Yahweh." Although the two names come from the same word, the apostles bearing them are separate figures in sacred history. Need we repeat that a real priest or a real bishop would know that?