Stupid Election

So then, my theory that the world is collectively getting dumber is only going to grow in strength in an election year. Ed Miliband seems to think 1970’s style socialism is just the ticket. David Cameron is campaigning on the platform of ‘I am not Ed Miliband’. Unfortunately for his electoral prospects the nation has managed to get to the other side of the recession swamp despite him and his cack-handed pinko administration rather than because of anything he’s done. The idea of voting for a man’s systematic destruction of the Conservative party and its core principles is galling. Even if the Labour party has embraced its most destructive left wing fantasies that doesn’t exactly get me running to the polling station. Not that the Conservatives matter up north anyway. Labour’s opposition here is UKIP.

To give you an idea of the absurdity of our current Prime Minister, recently UKIP promised to keep UK defence spending at 2% of GDP. This is astonishing only in the fact that it has been an election issue at all. The UK, as a Nato signatory, has promised on to keep its defence spending over 2% of GDP. So what is David Cameron doing neglecting our responsibilities on the global stage by not promising to keep it at that level? Heaven forbid we should get into a shooting war with a country that actually has a military rather than the unruly mobs we’ve had such trouble fighting in the middle east. What people don’t realise is that the 2% of gdp, that Cameron hasn’t promised to ring fence, for the first time includes our very expensive nuclear deterrent. In other words military expenditure has gone through the floor under our present government at a time when the world seems less safe by the day.

This is what is so irritating about the furore surrounding UKIP, on this issue and many others not only is it obvious they are talking sense, its the legacy parties who are talking absolute tosh. UKIP is subjected to the most intense scrutiny (and indeed misinformation) regarding its candidates. This scrutiny should be subjected to the legacy parties. I’ve got news for Labour, Conservatives and Libdem parties, a lot of your party members are bigots too. The Greens are misanthropes who want to send us back to the stone age but they are getting wildly disproportionate voter support due to the dishonest reporting and left leaning foibles of our current establishment. This and the fact that their idiotic energy policy is actually less idiotic than Labour’s, I get the feeling that leftists don’t want to start throwing stones in glass houses. The SNP and Plaid Cymru are both campaigning on a platform even further to the left of Labour and look like they will do quite well doing so. We are faced with Labour needing SNP support to form a government so far to the left it really will be back to the 1970’s.

Good luck with the future peeps. If you have any money now is the time to emigrate. Meanwhile the rest of us might as well start learning the soviet anthem.

May you live in idiotic times.

So then its been months since my last post. Winter is always absolutely brutal to my mental health. Also nothing much has changed in the world except the news has been increasingly and unrelentingly grim. They say cometh the hour; cometh the man, but I see no evidence of that thus far. There is a reason why the bible says don’t put your faith in kings and princes.

My therapist tells me that focusing on future global issues is one of things which cripples me in the here and now and he’s almost certainly right. But I’m going to talk about my favourite pet beef anyway.

The head of the IPCC has resigned after allegations of sexual harassment. This is the railway engineer who, with a close knit cadre of chums, repeatedly rewrote the IPCC summary for policy makers to whitewash the findings of the full report which were invariably less conclusive than he would have liked (or at least retained a modicum of healthy scientific caution).

At the same time as one of the chief architects of the anthropogenic global warming scam is exiting stage left, the government funded bodies in America that keep the ground temperature record have been caught upwardly adjusting the temperature records by 35%.

You remember how 2014 was the hottest year on record? well it wasn’t. But it doesn’t matter because news that they’ve fiddled the numbers will never make it into the mainstream press anyway. Christopher Booker being the notable exception. (one of the two good writers left at the zombie Telegraph)

Now all that is left is to ascribe motivation to the most expensive error in the history of science. Was it deception? was it confirmation bias? was it just a massive cock up by statistically illiterate ‘scientists’? well if it were the latter it would have been corrected before now. It doesn’t matter to the warmists if they make mistakes so long as they make the right kind of mistakes. My theory is that left wing governments across the Western world have had little incentive to dig up the truth, because this kind of scare is right up their ally.

It reminds me of Reg Shoe in Terry Pratchett’s Nightwatch who is so ideologically blinded he puts The Peoples Republic of Treacle Mine Road under rationing when they have more food than they can possibly eat. (Just so long as he gets to be the one holding the clipboard and bossing everyone about of course). Except of course this manufactured alarm is a colossal waste of money in a time when nobody has any money. It seems to me the jig is up, but I don’t expect the leftists of the world to stop dancing to its long faded tune. We truly live in the most idiotic times.

Mad world gets madder by the minute

Lately I’ve been casting my eye over politics again. A friend of mine asked why. My response was that its the most laughably dysfunctional process run by the most intellectually dishonest people, so I guess its morbid curiosity. But if at the moment politics is a dark comedy its about to become a serious nightmare. Ed Miliband looks utterly hopeless but the worst thing about it is that EVERYBODY KNOWS this and Labour are still neck and neck or slightly ahead in the polls. The question arises why?

The answer isn’t political, its cultural. It started with the way universities were subverted by communists in this country during the cold war. In fact a lot of red professors were open about their loyalties to the Soviet Union. This led to left wing school teachers who are also public servants so public spending will always be a good thing in their book. Then we had the rise of anti-Thatcherism on TV. Ben Elton and co. That is what really began to push the needle left in this country. Politics became a matter of what was cool and what wasn’t and lets be clear it became so ingrained that Ben Elton could walk onto a stage and say ‘Margaret Thatcher’ and people would boo like trained monkeys. Tony Blair’s ‘cool Britania’ was the logical conclusion of this vacuous movement, when being seen to be a ‘cool’ politician trumped everything, spin was vastly more important than substance. Barack Obama owes a lot to Tony Blair in this way.

The final result is we have generations of people at voting age who have been raised in a culture where TV is king and TV is left wing. They will vote accordingly. Conservative voters are almost always either old or very old. The demographics are destiny because the culture war has been fought and won, by the left.

Now it doesn’t matter how effectively you argue that left wing ideas are poisonous to the poor. It doesn’t matter how effectively you argue that wind ‘power’ is utterly bonkers. It doesn’t matter how many horror stories about the EU you uncover. You can’t compete with two hours a day of brainwashing. People do believe what they see on the news, especially the opinion. That is the interesting part, people do often feel able to question facts of a piece (not enough in my opinion but still) but they don’t question the manipulation of the heartstrings.

A typical BBC report on anything, will have the right wing politico say something, then rather than find a lefty politico to debate the issue they’ll go find someone who will make a sad face to camera and say look what that horrible politico is doing to the average Joe. It is this blatant manipulation that makes me tear my hair out. This goes on at the highest levels at the ultimate lefty institution and waste of oxygen, the UN. Logic does not prevail today, we live in a mad age. When will the world wake up? Probably the day people dispose of their TV’s.

In Catholic news, the lefty media has picked up on a couple of not quite damning things a Bishop has said about gay people in a position paper for the Synod on the family. This is apparently big news. It really isn’t. The left wing media should get its sources in their correct context and stop getting people’s hopes up. The Church needs to be obedient to its own Catechism first in regard to being truly accepting and compassionate to gay people. Once that happens eventually it will have to listen to gay people and discover that they do not consider themselves to be ‘intrinsically disordered’ when it comes to who they fall in love with. I expect change to come gradually, probably long after I’m dead, I’d say five hundred years is an ambitious estimate. By which time western civilisation will have long since fallen so I guess it’ll be a moot point.

My mind is made up, I am now in favour of gay marriage.

Yes, this is something that was obviously in the offing, that my past reluctance to endorse gay marriage was gradually eroding with the more loving gay Christian couples I met. Gay marriage is the only honest response to the romantic love God seems to be giving gay christian couples. It never occurred to the early Church that gentiles might become the vast majority of its members, until God gave gentiles the Holy Spirit, likewise the Church now has to recognise the reality of gay love. Because I knew that secular people have a warped idea of marriage to begin with it took gay Christian couples to convince me.

Christianity invented the idea of marriage being about love, but just as Jesus said the Sabbath was made for man, so marriage is made for love not the other way around. When you find gay people with this christian desire for the sanctity of marriage for their relationship it is eye opening, when you see that they really do genuinely and deeply love one another it takes a certain kind of callousness to grope around for reasons to tell them that their love is not worthy of the Church’s blessing.

It seems to me that gay love is a mirror of God’s limitless love for humanity not bound by our human frailties. That there have been gay people since the dawn of time and there are now seven billion people on the planet. Maybe Christian homophobes seem to think that everytime two women or two men kiss a child dies? Actually if straight Christians obey the Church when it comes to contraception then there will be plenty of sons and daughters to become priests and nuns, and there will also be enough of us so that the one in ten of us who are gay will not cause any harm to the survival of the species.

I’ve been ruminating a lot on this in my sleep, because for the first time I went to bed genuinely happy to be queer last night, I’ve finally realised why ‘Courage’ is so incredibly discouraging and its the same reason they ceaselessly use the term same sex attraction. They cannot use the term gay because for them it would be a lie, because they are miserable, they are deeply unhappy to be the people that God created them to be. It does not have to be this way, God calls us to life and life in all its fullness.

The reason I went to sleep happy was that I went to another fantastic LGBT Christian event and heard the newly minted (Catholic) ceo of Stonewall talk about their work and simply and powerfully about how right it is that gay people be true to who they are. The theme of the event was Desmond Tutu’s quote “There comes a point where we all need to stop just pulling people out of the river, we need to go upstream and find out why they are falling in”. Or in the case of gay Christians, why we are being pushed in.

It is within this context that I can look past the psychological hurt done to me by the Church that does not seem to care it is crucifying its own members on the issue of homosexuality. Remind myself that I am just one person, and that actually there are many more like me, and that whilst keeping my head below the parapet might be a good survival technique I owe it to my gay brothers and sisters in Christ to voice my dissent against the machinery of this institution that really does grind so many of us into paste.

The Catholic Church does not realise how brutally it erases its gay members. It seems to think that insisting gay people never do anything gay is somehow a loving acceptance of gay people. No it is not. It is annihilation. The Catholic Church has said in the Catechism decades ago now that gay people need to be loved and accepted, but when it comes to what that actually might entail it still needs to be educated.

Being gay absolutely is not a ‘cross to bear’, being gay is wonderful, what is a cross to bear is the Church’s small minded refusal to truly accept gay people for who they are and who they love. I am happy because the gay Christians I’ve met are wonderful and from now on I will endeavour to put my head above the parapet for them, I will not be beaten down because now I have other people I can stand up and be counted for and be vociferous in their defence.

Independence day?

So the Scottish referendum is upon us. I think its a harbinger of the apocalypse, not because Scottish independence would be bad for everyone, which it would, but that so much energy is being wasted on such a nonsense, a self inflicted wound. There are so many real life issues we should be more concerned about rather than creating new ones. The cost to the UK monetarily will be staggering, but the cost to our cohesion, to our identity will be huge and is already huge.

The Orange order were marching in Endinbrugh. We do not need sectarian tensions being given fuel. Violence is being predicted on polling day, and the no campaign has been somewhat understated because people don’t want to open themselves up to the virulent nationalist attacks. We do not need to be weakened with infighting when it seems the wheels are falling off the wagon of the post world war two war peace dividend.

Pope Francis has called the current level of global conflict a piecemeal world war three, which is maybe a slight exaggeration, but there is that feeling in the air similar to Japan’s invasion of China that showed the league of nations was a powerless talking shop (just as the UN is seen today) Obama’s desire for peace is manifesting as inaction and allowing evil to flourish. Putin is a cold war relic reacting to EU over reaching. But the vast majority of the conflict has been Islamic in motivation, when are people going to start saying the blindingly obvious on that front?

Obama threw away the hard won peace in Iraq with his premature retreat. His weak and slow reaction to ISIS has meant the effort to stop them will have to be bigger, and will probably have to fall to the next US president. But the other thing the world needs to get used to is that all wars involve civilian casualties, wars against a terrorist state especially so because they hide amongst civilians and positively revel in civilian casualties. They commit deliberate acts of mass murder precipitating war, then point to the inevitable collateral damage of war and say “see you are just as bad as us”.

Moderation in war is madness, you need to destroy your enemy as quickly as possible, long attritional wars always cause more death and destruction. But that’s what we’ll get with president weak sauce. Meanwhile the rest of Nato has slashed defense spending to the point that without America we can do little to nothing.

British defense spending has always been slashed just years before a big war. This is how its been for hundreds of years. By that reckoning there is a storm coming. It seems the only politician with any balls is Tony Abbott of Australia, committing troops, his decision to confront evil head on is inspiring, it is better to be on hand with ten men than absent with ten thousand, its time the western world followed his example, the more troops you send the less you’ll lose and six hundred Aussies isn’t going to get it done.

Gay marriage?

Yesterday I spent a significant amount of time perambulating with and conversing with gay Christians either at Yorkshire sculpture park or in the car on the way to and from said park. All lovely, a few more talkative than others (although maybe it was just me, I was operating on zero hours of sleep which is not good). We walked around the park, sadly not looking at enough sculpture, but more interested in talking. I was the only Catholic there to my knowledge, no surprises there.

The more I talk to gay Christians the more certain I get that gay love and gay relationships are as perfectly valid as straight relationships. It struck me that people who want to defend heterosexual marriage by attacking gay marriage have things perfectly backwards. Seems like “I like my toy so I’m going to throw yours out the window” to me, thoroughly childish thinking of the nastiest variety. If you want to defend heterosexual marriage, love your husband/wife, love your children, be a loving family.

Somewhere around 1 in 10 people are gay or bisexual, it has been thus since the beginning of time and will be at the end of time. This hasn’t stopped humanity from procreating. Complementarity of the sexes is all well and good, but what if God also created gay people and straight people, and what if gay love is complementary to straight love?

Gay people should never enter into crushingly depressing attempts at heterosexual marriage, living a lie, causing incredible harm to their spouse, their children and themselves. Therefore they are not a loss to the heterosexual marriage pool to begin with. Two people falling in love does not affect two other people falling in love, unless its adulterous. If people are so obsessed with non procreative relationships being evil then celibacy should be the first thing out the window.

The other psychological motivation for preventing gay marriage is the worry that being gay is contagious, that somehow at the first sight of two men or two women pledging love to one another they’ll suddenly be overcome with the desire to shag the nearest person of their own sex. If that is the case then I have good news for you, secretly you are one of us.

Gay couples can do lots of things, they can adopt children, they can work for the Church, they can serve the poor, they can do any number of things, and they can do these things just as well as straight couples. Just as good marriages can be about love so can good gay relationships. I was never massively on board with gay marriage, and I’m still not 100% convinced, but I’m beginning to lean that way.

The Christian ideal of marriage has developed over two thousand years, it is significantly different to the time of Jesus, which was significantly different to how it was in the old testament, which is where a lot of modern Christians get most of their ‘understanding’ of homosexuality from. What is to say that it won’t develop some more? But the survival of Christianity depends on straight people having more children, so if you are straight and you want to save heterosexual Christian marriage, throw your contraception away, or the Muslims will be taking over before too long. Talking of which here is a video about ‘moderate Islam’ for you to enjoy.

“To whom shall we go? you have the words of eternal life”.

That really is an interesting phrase isn’t it. There is a real ambivalence to it. “I think what you just said about eating your body is freaky as heck but at least we don’t have to worry about starving with your miraculous catering skills” might have been more what Peter was thinking.

But as a queer Catholic I feel a bit of that ambivalence every time I get ready to go to altar serve Mass. I love the Church, I love the Mass, I love the Catholic faith. I will never give it up, even if the Church cannot escape this straight jacket it has made for itself on the issue of homosexuality. I will still be here, because to whom shall I go?

I asked my parish priest if I could put up a poster for the next meeting of the LGBT Christian group I’ve been going to, I got a rather predictable no. The worst part of it is no matter what his personal feelings on the issue he cannot be seen to be in support of anything that might get him in trouble. But what that means is that gay Catholics will just be left to feel isolated and the majority just lapse. Catholic means universal, we are supposed to have diversity, but as it happens we only have the ‘diversity’ imposed from above, whether that is in the guise of rubbish liturgy, mediocre priests, or no place for Gay Christians to be accepted, grow in faith and discover they are not alone. (Don’t talk to me about Courage either, five minutes on their website was enough to make me want to kill myself)

Anyway its an open event: 2pm, Saturday the 11th of October, St Ninian’s Church, Chanterlands Ave, Hull, HU5 4DL. A talk followed by a Q&A with Ruth Hunt, the newly appointed Chief Executive of Stonewall (who also happens to be a Catholic) and Tracy Byrne Chief Executive of LGCM. Obviously you don’t have to be gay, bisexual, lesbian, transsexual or anything else to come along, yes you can even be straight! If you don’t agree with the speakers feel free to ask tough questions in the Q&A. But yes the experience of the past shows that people who have problems with homosexuals don’t turn up because they don’t want to be confronted by the human faces of the people their reading of the Bible hurts.

Jesus never mentioned homosexuality, and St Paul made a couple of throw away comments, I heard that all told homosexuality is mentioned seven times in the Bible. Think about that. How many times does the old testament recommend genocide? (I don’t know the answer to that but its at least a couple) How many times is love mentioned? hundreds, maybe even thousands. Whilst I think Pope Francis’ papacy has been a big PR smokescreen with not a lot of action, the message he is sending out, of being willing to risk doing the wrong thing in order to try to do the right thing, is a good one, and a brave one, because otherwise Christians risk doing nothing to reach out to those in need, and we are all in need of God’s saving grace.

Queer Catholics most likely will never be told by the Church that it is perfectly possible to be Christian and gay. Or more precisely the Church says its fine to be homosexual, just never do anything about it, never talk about it, and for goodness sake don’t fall in love with someone that is just disgusting. So we work ourselves to serious mental and physical illness because of the pressure of being in the closet, just like Vicky Beeching did. I did not come out of the closet for other people, I came out for me, because it was killing me. If people have a problem with who I am that is their problem, not mine, but the Catholic Church always shifts blame away from itself. It is pushing people into the river on this issue, and we have to climb out and fish each other out as best we can.