Francis W. Porretto

Mount Sinai, NY USA

Author's posts

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 …

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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; …

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At The Entrance To Hell

     America is in a bad way, largely because we’ve neither acknowledged previous public-policy mistakes nor responded firmly to lawlessness and public disorder. The bill mounts with each passing day. Whether we or any successor generation will pay it is uncertain.      But there are some horrors we have not yet embraced…at least, not all …

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A New Kind Of “Mistake”

     I think we’ll be seeing this more often:      Sunday’s fatal shooting in a Minneapolis suburb was the 18th time in the past 20 years that police officers used a gun when they said they intended to use a Taser, according to a use-of-force researcher.      By comparison, police kill about 1,000 people each …

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The Political Strategy Of The Usurper Regime…

     …is to lie. Continuously. About everything.      Two examples follow – and believe me, I could have produced more without any exertion.      First comes a scathing article from John Lott and Thomas Massie:      There were so many lies in Vice President Kamala Harris’ and President Joe Biden’s presentations on guns Thursday that …

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A Couple Of Catholic Conundrums

     An old tickler from many years ago is about the day a gaggle of theologians were confronted by a layman with a simple question: “Did Adam and Eve have navels?” The initial consensus answer was no. But, the layman objected, that doesn’t square with the notion that the first man and woman were the …

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Damn It All, I Was Just Getting Down To Work…

     …when this came along.      (Thank you, Adrienne.)      The whole article is worth your attention – your careful attention. Don’t accept it uncritically. Think about it, ask yourself (and others) why governments would want to depopulate their own jurisdictions, and whether the means proposed by Dr. Yeadon is a plausible method. Ask also …

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Asymmetries

     Some things, it seems, must be said so bluntly that no one can mistake or “reinterpret” them. However, when the subjects fall within a certain realm, most persons, including many who are outspoken on other matters will dance around the subject hoping to avert a tide of defamation. The deficit of courage this suggests …

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Authority Versus Evidence Part 2: When Authorities Collide

     Those without expertise who nevertheless posture as authorities do so for a range of reasons, but most common among them is the desire to promulgate a falsehood. The causal logic behind this is unfortunately quite compelling. If you want people to believe a thesis that is untrue, when there are sources of information that …

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Authority Versus Evidence

     It’s risky to reflexively attribute actual knowledge to persons who represent themselves as “authorities.” More Americans have been led badly astray by such “authorities” than have contracted the Wuhan Virus. Speaking of which, courtesy of Ragin’ Dave at Peace or Freedom, here’s a contemporary example:      Last month, when Texas Governor Greg Abbott axed …

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Distinctions That Fail To Matter

     Anyone familiar with the fusillades over race and racial differences these past few decades will be aware that there are some subjects generally regarded as “too hot to touch.” The confrontation-averse are well advised to avoid such subjects, as those on one side are prone to hurling insults rather than reasoned arguments with evidentiary …

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When Smart People Write Dumb Things

     “We’re all fools, most of our lives. It’s unavoidable.” –Jean Valjean in Les Miserables      Everyone, at some point in his life, says or does something he later regrets. It’s part and parcel of human fallibility. It’s also a solid foundation for one of the Redeemer’s least-appreciated sayings:      Judge not, that ye be …

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Where Is The State?

     The operational definition of a state is an entity which is conceded the privilege of using coercive force by the residents of some region. The residents of the region concede the state that privilege because they also concede it to have jurisdiction (remember that word) over events in that region. Thus, there exists an …

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A Giggle To Start Your Day

     Here it is, from the irreplaceable Maura Dowling:      CAPITALIZING ON DEMOCRAT HYPOCRISY      “Last week, our president decided to go on national news and basically disparage our state,” [Georgia State Representative Wesley] Cantrell began. “We have a new election integrity law here that we passed a couple of weeks ago, and our president, …

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At The Margins

     “A corporation has neither a soul to be damned nor a body to be kicked.” – maxim cited by Isabel Paterson      Via John Hinderaker comes this James Kunstler piece on “wokeism.” He opens with a blast against “corporate wokeists:”      What were the execs of these mighty companies thinking — these knights of …

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Chronicles Of The Narrative Engineers

     Does anyone else remember this piece? I stated my conclusion and theme quite plainly:      If there’s anything that a conservative or libertarian must keep constantly in mind, it’s that whatever their enticements and cajolery, the Main Stream Media are not his friend. They’re not interested in his positions or his arguments for them. …

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The Last Vigil

     The darkness was absolute. No fire burned within range of his sight. Neither moon nor stars bedecked the sky. Had he not taken his post in daylight, he would not have known where he stood. Only the rough stone wall of the crypt against his back served to remind him of it.      The …

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Stop Them NOW!

     “When man believed that happiness was dependent upon God, he killed for religious reasons. When he believed that happiness was dependent upon the form of government, he killed for political reasons….After dreams that were too long, true nightmares…we arrived at the present period of history. Man woke up, discovered that which we always knew, …

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“It Is Finished”

     The coverage is extensive and multiply confirmed:      Yet even today, two millennia after the event which transformed all of existence both natural and supernatural, men ask what He meant by that.      Perhaps it’s simpler than we think. Perhaps it means only that, as He told His Apostles at the Last Supper, He …

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Standards

     First up today, courtesy of Mike Miles at 90 Miles From Tyranny, an indispensable quote from the indispensable Thomas Sowell:      Now, a few words from Ksenya Aleksandrova at Chicks on the Right:      I see that the ugly lies that math, timeliness, and successful life habits are systems of racism and whiteness are …

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