Francis W. Porretto

Mount Sinai, NY USA

Author's posts

Three Lives, Three Deaths

     She was young. Far too young, by most reckonings, to be equipped to cope with tragedy.      She’d been married only a short time when she discovered that she was pregnant…and only a short time later discovered that her baby daughter was anencephalic, incapable of living outside the womb.      Against medical advice and …

Continue reading

To Be Or To Do? A Rumination

     Before I launch into today’s indulgence in sententiousness, allow me a few prefatory words. Several Gentle Readers have written to ask why I’ve been writing so much about subjects in moral-ethical thought. I expected to be asked about it, and have been thinking about the answer for my own benefit as well as that …

Continue reading

The Virtues And Virtue: A Rumination

     If you’ve had any kind of education at all, you’ll be familiar with the three “theological” virtues: Faith, Hope, Charity.      …and if you managed to graduate high school without being incarcerated for a major felony, you’ll probably know about the “cardinal virtues:” Prudence, Justice, Temperance, Fortitude.      I shan’t expend server space expounding …

Continue reading

Faith And Fiction: A Rumination

     The more you look, the more you see. — Robert M. Pirsig      It’s amazing the way the realm of the mind expands, providing ever more room to prowl, and hopefully to grow, to him who is willing to look at significant subjects synthetically as well as analytically. Consider this observation from the great …

Continue reading

The Political Function Of Racism

     I cribbed the title above from a chapter in one of the books on my Most Admired list: Jean-Francois Revel’s masterwork The Flight From Truth: The Reign of Deceit in an Age of Information. In that chapter, Revel does a masterful job of delineating the Left’s perversion of what was once a simple, precisely …

Continue reading

Freudian Slips Dept.

     This one is courtesy of Wes Rhinier at NCRenegade:      Laugh? Cry? Or bellow in fury? In this particular multiple-choice test, there are no wrong answers.

Misplaced Faiths

     Some years ago – I hesitate to say how many – a colleague and I got into a wrangle about the compiler he was using in his development work. I’d found a fault in the generated code – I did my debugging in machine language, back then – and, upon comparing it to the …

Continue reading

Cumulative Acceptance

     I’ve been watching the trends that run through the various genres of fiction I’ve occasionally produced: Science Fiction, High Fantasy, Urban Fantasy / Horror, Romance,      …and I believe I’ve deduced a few things about both reader and writer behavior, all of which pertain to the important consideration called willing suspension of disbelief.      …

Continue reading

From Tim

     I’ve been in a bad way lately: physical problems, difficulties in managing my household, a persistent emotional trough, and low levels of energy and motivation. Some of that’s to be expected in a septuagenarian. As for the rest, I try to cope. Still, it can be very hard when the negatives gang up for …

Continue reading

Unspeakabilities

     There are things we of Polite Society are not supposed to discuss. Indeed, throughout the history of Mankind there have always been such things. Mention of them was forbidden by custom and the threat of ostracism. However, the specific subjects within the realm of unspeakability have changed as time has passed.      I’ve written …

Continue reading

Survey!

     Everybody’s taking surveys and polls lately. Seems that way, anyway. So I figured it’s time to survey the Gentle Readers of Liberty’s Torch on a few subjects of current importance.      For each of the statements below, please indicate, on a scale of 1 to 5, whether you: Disagree strongly; Disagree somewhat; Are indifferent; …

Continue reading

Concerning The Judicial Lynching Of Derek Chauvin

     This only just sprang to mind:      “We are not fighting against single individuals. We are exterminating the bourgeoisie as a class. Do not look in materials you have gathered for evidence that a suspect acted or spoke against the Soviet authorities. The first question you should ask him is what class he belongs …

Continue reading

Capturing The Moment

     Were you under the impression that the United States is not currently in a state of civil war? Minneapolis City Council Candidate and Former City Employee Encourages Rioters to Burn Down Wealthy Neighborhoods Right On Cue: Portland Rioters Go On Destructive Rampage After Chauvin Verdict, Police Actually Intervene BLM Minneapolis: ‘I Don’t Want to …

Continue reading

Extinction And Rebirth

     We called them “the media.” Some of us knew why: they were the middlemen between us and the information we sought. They formed a conduit between events of significance and those of us who wanted to know about them. We trusted them to pass the information about those events to us, undistorted and untainted …

Continue reading

Good Ideas Always Resurface

     A long, long time ago, back when there was music on AM radio and I was a wee proto-engineer who spent his days correcting other people’s errors in Fortran (Fortran-66, mind you), a colleague commenting on a promotion we in the Computing Center were attempting urged us all to “Think visual.” He exhorted us …

Continue reading

There Is No Time

     Today will be a very busy day for me, for reasons beyond the scope of this rant. And so, as befits the Grand Ironic Tradition we faithfully maintain here at Liberty’s Torch, I have far too much to write about. Worse, I must begin by reposting an old piece: one which first appeared fifteen …

Continue reading

Pushing The Outside Of The Credibility Envelope

     Courtesy of Weasel Zippers, we have this literally incredible story about Joe Biden’s “popularity:”      Joe Biden approaches the 100-day mark of his presidency with a relatively strong job approval rating and the public continuing to express positive views of the coronavirus aid package passed by Congress last month. Moreover, nearly three-quarters of Americans …

Continue reading

FLASH! Breaking News!

     The super-secret investigators of Liberty’s Torch have made a shocking discovery. Anthony Fauci, for more than a year the federal government’s most recognizable face as regards all things COVID-19, has been revealed as a high executive of the Umbrella Corporation:      RACCOON CITY: Earlier today, Anthony Fauci was overheard deep in conversation with Albert …

Continue reading

Transitions In Thought

     The history of human thought has not been one of monotonic advance. There have been times and places where material rationality — i.e., the use of the methods of the physical sciences to investigate the properties of the physical world – has attempted to supplant aspects of thought that those methods cannot address. One …

Continue reading

Gazing Into The Abyss

     If you’re not aware of Catholic moral theory – and even many Catholics aren’t fully aware of it – you might not have become acquainted with the “five non-negotiables” of the Catholic Church: i.e., the five subjects on which no alteration in doctrine will ever be contemplated: Abortion; Same-sex marriage; Embryonic stem-cell research; Euthanasia; …

Continue reading

Load more