Monday, March 27, 2017

I've been watching the liberal snit over Judge Gorsuch . . .

and trying to determine what's causing it, other than the GOP refusing to hold hearings on Judge Garland.

 Neil Gorsuch

It's been really remarkable.  Some of my liberal friends, including one who is a lawyer, even rejoiced over the Supreme Court reversing a decision he authored, an event that doesn't mean anything at all. To be a judge is to be reversed.

And then I read an article in the National Review on line that I think crystallized it.

Basically, the Democrats are Anti Democratic.

What this is all about is a fear that a Justice Gorsuch would apply the law as written.  Democrats, who probably ought to rename themselves the Antidemocrats, hate that idea, as that would mean that their concepts for social revolution would have to go to the voters. . . who don't want it, or whom they fear don't want it.

At least since the early 1970s, and more likely dating back into the 60s, there's been some, granted a few, Supreme Court decisions of huge import that have no foundation in the Constitution. Obergefell is the most recent of those.  The Obergefell decision is shockingly extra legal and it is based, at its essence, in social theory, not jurisprudence.  The Democrats know that and they fear that a judge that sticks to the law won't make decisions like that.

They can likely rest easy that the damage done by Obergefell is in fact done for the time being a least, although if Roe v. Wade is any indicator it'll slowly become despised.  Indeed, the Democrats have preservation of Roe, which at one time democracy loving liberals, when there were some, such as the The New Republic (before it was the sorry fish wrapper it is today) thought should be overruled.  Now, the liberal Democrats, which has become nearly all of the Democrats, don't trust people or their legislators and would rather be ruled by the Platonic elite, the high nine of elderly sages who would enact their brave new world by fiat.

Well, long term, in the modern world, dictatorships don't last.  We can either have courts that apply the law as written and leave the legislation to legislators, or we can have broad contempt of court until the courts don't matter anymore.  I'll take the former.

Budgeting in the era of Trump: Getting a grasp on the local via the proposed budget. Philosophy, Subsidiarity, Distributism, Socialism, Wisonism, FDRism, . . . oh my! Or, did we really mean that when we said it?


 FDR Handbill.

For decades Republicans, and the majority of Wyomingites are Republicans, have decried the "out of control" Federal budget.  And not without some reason.  The Federal government has grown enormously in the past century.  When this is mentioned the norm is to note the big expansion that came about during the Great Depression, but when we look at all of the 1916 and 1917 newspapers I've been posting for a little over a year now, it's clear that quite a bit of that trend existed even during the Progressive Era.

I've posted on budget matters and the concepts behind them, which are rarely discussed anywhere, here before and indeed I just posted one on the Trump proposed budget.  I have a thread that I may or may not finish started on health care, and oddly enough, that fits into this topic nicely. But I'll address that (probably) elsewhere (probably).

Here I'm going to address something I've noted here quite a bit before, but which people seem to be otherwise noticing for the first time.  And that topic is, so to speak, where the Federal money hits the road, particularly if it threatens to pick up and take the road out.

Starting off, I'll note that a recent issue of the The New Republic, to which I am a subscriber almost, had an article on this topic just recently.  I say subscriber almost as I"ve let my subscription lapse.  I've been a subscriber since, I think, 1985 when the magazine was given to me as a gift but it's descended into pathetic and I'm bailing out before it actually sinks.  Anyhow, the recent article was written in a snarky almost "don't you love me?" style by some disaffected "blue" stater who was upset by the last election.  His argument was that the "blue" states (which I think should be the "red" states in keeping with the international political color scheme used everywhere else) should just ignore the "red" states, fund themselves, and then sooner or later the blue states would come crying back, after seeing that they are economic freeloaders.

I think perhaps that author overestimates, massively, the degree to which a lot of red staters don't care about things blue staters do. This usually becomes obvious when we read letters to the editor in the local paper that read like "if you don't ban wolf hunting I won't go to Yellowstone".  Don't come. We don't care.

Which doesn't mean that a lot of this budget stuff, if it actually passes, won't be noticed.

Yesterday we read in the paper that Cody might loose air service, for example.

Apparently Cody's air service is subsidized by the Federal government.  I had no idea whatsoever, and I'll bet most Wyomingites don't either.  I didn't know that the Federal government, outside of administering airports and air travel (which is a type of subsidy, but an absolutely necessary one) subsidized any air travel.  But, it turns out, it does.

It does because it was recognized, when the airlines were deregulated, that the air carriers would abandon small towns.  So a Federal program was put in to subsidize it.

 
British Antarctic Survey Plane at our airport.  Our airport isn't subsidized, so it'll keep on keeping on and maybe even do better if small airports aren't subsidized. 

But, should that have been done?

I don't know. 

On one had, I get it.  This is a big state, and air travel is really useful.  Indeed, just recently I looked into trying to fly into Cody as I had a funeral to attend in Powell, and I was in Houston.  I didn't do it, but I could have.

But, on the other hand, it's hard for me to justify the United States paying for subsidized air travel into Cody.

Maybe the state could? 

The state does in fact give a little funding to airports, and last year there was some discussion on this in regards to Riverton's airport. But, with a big budget crunch, I doubt that Wyoming has the bucks for subsidized air travel, and maybe philosophically it shouldn't bother.  After all, is it the job of the government to subsidize the quickest means of transportation?

Well, some countries clearly think so, and lots at least build high speed rail.  I don't know that high speed rail doesn't pay for itself, but I do know that I love the conventional speed rail put in by the City of Denver to downtown.  Is it subsidized?  I have no idea.

 

I do know that for a century the Federal government has been involved in funding highway construction, and this became a huge deal during the Eisenhower Administration.  While dressed up in various ways the truth of the matter is that the Federal government just felt that a national highway system benefited everyone, and in particular commerce.

I've noted here before that this amounts to a subsidy of the trucking industry.  Trucker are amongst the most "red" of "red stateers" (in the goofy American color reversal description, i.e., I don't mean truckers are Communist, far from it), and they would not be capable of accepting that they are subsidized, but they are.  If truckers paid fully for their use of the highways, they'd howl, and of course the railroads, with home they are competing, would laugh all the way to the bank. Railroad are already the most efficient and green mans of hauling anything and they'd no doubt welcome the added business that would necessarily come about if the Federal government told the states "pay for your own darned roads".

I don't know what the Federal budget actually does, this go around, for road construction and maintenance, but I have to think that the states must be worried. Generally, I think, there's a general concept that the states like being able to maintain the roads themselves but its in the common good that the Federal government pay for things.

This, sort of, is also the way, very loosely, that a lot of environmental regulation works.  In Wyoming the State Department of Environmental Quality actually administers most of the laws that the EPA does in states that haven't elected to run things themselves.  Now, DEQ is worried what reduced EPA funding will mean to the DEQ.  The answer isn't really clear.

Cutting back on all sort of Federal regulation, via the budgetary process, has long been a conservative dream and many in the state are gleeful that it appear that will occur.  This gets to be less the case, however, when that money falls outside of the conventional regulatory category and into other areas.  The state is now worrying, for example, about the upcoming fire season as its clear that if the budget goes through there's less money to fight forest fires and we're having a hard time with that already.  

Here the equity of things would seem to demand that the Federal government, as the state's largest landowner, fund fighting fires on its own land.  The irony of this, however, is that this is one of the very things those opposed to transferring the public domain, like me, argued about. There's no earthly way the Western states can pay for fire suppression.  None-whatsoever.   We can't do it.  The Feds should.  We need them to.

 
Casper Mountain Fire of 2012.  It was bad.  Federal money helped suppress it.  It's not like the county could afford those fire bombers. 

 

I'll note that at least if you are a sportsmen, budget cuts at the Federal level are really distressing. For well over a century, indeed dating back to at least the Theodore Roosevelt administration, Federal money and Federal programs have been very active in this area.  Moreover, in quite a few of them, but not all of them, taxes on sporting equipment completely fund the programs. There wouldn't be a wild animal bigger than a rabbit left alive in this country, for example, but for sportsmen and the taxes they pay on their equipment.

So cutting this stuff is really distressing.  Its an interesting example of, in many cases, a small segment of the population paying for something that benefits everyone.  Could the states take over in this area?

Well, not in this era, that's certain.  They don't want to.

That may sound cynical but that's the best evidence.  It hasn't always been that way, however.  The State of Wyoming was a real pioneer in game conservation and the ethos that caused that is still there.  If recent evidence means anything, however, a spirit of "sell it" has taken over the minds of various legislatures.  We would have had to really worry about the Wyoming legislature and the Utah legislature seems seized by delusion right now.  The GOP in Montana is trying to disassociate itself with such views right now, realizing that its caused Democratic gains in the state.  Wyoming Democrats didn't seem to gain, but the legislature did get a clue about 2.5 seconds before Cheyenne threatened to start looking, metaphorically, like a scene from a Sergei Eisenstein movie.

Protestors at the Legislature this year. . . oh wait, that's a poster for the Battleship Potemkin.

This is an interesting example how the principal of subsidiarity doesn't always work in the real world.  Wyomingites would rather live in tents than have hte public land sold, and they'd like to fund conservation efforts to.  Most of them don't think the BLM is the Gestapo for that matter.  But if you looked at the bad ideas coming out of our legislature last session, you wouldn't know that. For that matter, if you looked at the junk our representation in Washington supports you wouldn't realize that either, at least as to the public lands and their administration.  Of course, they may know that too, which is why, maybe, they've avoided doing much in the way of public appearances while on recess.

Anyhow, what all this brings to mind is the fundamental question.  What do we think we should fund, and should it be funded locally or nationally?  Put another way, is it fair to the residents of New Jersey to tax them for air travel in Wyoming?  What about highway travel?  

As a nation, we've never really figures this out.

The Cheyenne State Leader for March 27, 1917: Wyoming National Guard Called Back into Service


After just a couple of weeks of civilian life, the Guard was called back into service.  A Colorado unit that had never demobilized was being retained at Ft. D. A. Russell.

Things were back on.

The Douglas Enterprise for March 27, 1917: Guard to get a big send off in Douglas


Douglas residents were going to gather at the LaBonte, long a hot spot in Douglas, to give Company F a big send off.

I don't know if the LaBonte is open again or not, but its still there.  It was open at least as late as the 1980s, and it might be now.

The Wyoming Tribune for March 27, 1917: State Troops Rushing Back


The Wyoming National Guard was in the throws of recovering troops it had only just discharged from active service. 

And the Germans, it was reported, were going to sell the Belgians as slaves.  All while Wilson was "dodging war".

The Laramie Daily Boomerang for March 27, 1917. Laramie's troops not yet ordered to Ft. Russell.


The Medical detachment of the Wyoming National Guard was expecting orders to return to Ft. D. A. Russell, where they'd been only a couple of weeks ago, but they hadn't yet received them.

In other news, a big air force was being planned and the new Russian government was being reported as "very popular".

Sunday, March 26, 2017

The Seattle Metropolitans win the Stanley Cup

On this day in 1917 the Seattle Metropolitans became the first US hockey team to win the Stanley Cup.



The Metropolitans were members of the Pacific Coast Hockey Association. They beat the Montreal Canadiens of the National Hockey Association three games to one.


Ketchikan, Alaska. March 26, 1917


Autocephalous? Eh? A Sunday Morning Scene Post.

 
Assumption of the Theotokos Greek Orthodox Cathedral of Denver

Usually we post a photo of a church, from our companion blog, Churches of the West.  Every now and then, however, we do something a little different, and this is one of those times.

It occurs to us that yesterday here we used the word "autocephalous" and, while we gave a little bit of an explanation, we assumed a lot in giving it.  Indeed, so much so that the overwhelming number of readers who are likely to stop by here are going to have no idea whatsoever what we were posting about in that context.

So today, we try explain that.  What is "autocephalous".  Well, it's the English translation of the word αὐτοκεφαλία.

Okay, there we go.

Well, that doesn't help at all, does it?

Autocephalous means, let "self headed".  So, when we used it in context it means a Self Headed Church within the Eastern Orthodox Communion.

But what does that mean?

By this point in this article, Eastern Orthodox Christians, well schooled Catholics and some others know what I mean, but most others will not.  And even a few who are vaguely familiar with what is meant by this don't really understand what it is. And frankly, because discussing this area, and particularly discussing the branches of Orthodoxy by a person who is not Orthodox, is tricky, this is dangerous ground where I'm likely to stumble a bit. So this will be the Kindergarten level explanation of autocephaly.

This is a concept that exists in the Eastern Orthodox churches for a variety of historical reasons, most of which I won't touch upon.  But to even grasp any of that, you have to start with the Apostolic churches.  Those are the churches that can trace their establishment back to the Apostles. 
 
 St Peter and St. Paul Orthodox Church, Salt Lake City Utah.  This is an Located quite near downtown, the church features the quote, above the front door; "It was in Antioch that they were first called Christians.".  The Antiochian Orthodox Church is the branch of the Orthodox Church associated with Orthodox Arabs, one of several Apostolic churches with strong Middle Eastern roots and a retained Middle Eastern presence, although they are much threatened there today.  Salt Lake, which of course is associated with the Mormon faith, has at least three Orthodox churches as it also has a Greek Orthodox cathedral and a Russian Orthodox church.  All of these churches are Eastern Orthodox and are therefore in full communion with one another.

All of the recognized Orthodox Churches and the Catholic Church are Apostolic churches.  While people like to imagine that they're fighting tooth and nail all the time (which is grossly exaggerated, quite frankly) this is a historical fact, not a matter of theological debate.  Indeed their principal, but not sole, item of debate is what that means between themselves as the Catholic Church takes the position that St. Peter had primacy amongst the Apostles in a true jurisdictional sense, while the Orthodox have taken the position from some point a thousand or so years ago, and probably back a bit further than that, that St. Peter had primacy as "the first amongst equals".  This is a significant matter in that Peter was the Bishop of Rome and therefore, in the Catholic view, the successor of St. Peter as the Bishop of Rome is the head of the Christian Church, where as the Orthodox take the view that the Bishop of Rome is the first amongst equals. As there are a variety of Eastern Orthodox churches there is some variance in how this would be said, but that's basically it. That's not, it should be noted, the sole topic at issue in the debate between them, but it's a significant issue.

 St. Peter holding the keys to the kingdom. To the Orthodox, Peter is the first of the apostles, but equal to the rest.  To Catholics, he had primacy.

There exists a schism between the Eastern Orthodox and the Catholic Church that has existed for some time, more or less since some point in the 11th Century although it was healed briefly in the 15th Century and came back into existence also in the 15th Century.  I'm not going into that here but I'm noting it only to note that there are other schisms that play into this overall story.  For example, there exists a Polish National Church and the Old Catholic Church, both of which are also Apostolic, tracing the lineage of their Bishops through the Catholic Church.  The Eastern Orthodox also have at least one schism I'm aware of, that being the Old Believers.  And there are at least two Protestant Churches that claim to be Apostolic Churches as well but which are not recognized by the Catholic Church as such (and I don't think they are by any main branch of the Eastern Orthodox, although in some quarters there was a little flirting with this at one time).  These churches are those in the Anglican Communion and the Lutheran churches.  This is a bit muddied in the case of the Lutheran churches, actually, and there's some differing view within that community.  The Methodist church also claims apostolic succession in a complicated fashion which we'll only barely touch on. A few other groups do as well, but for the most part those get increasingly complicated and strained.

While this post is not intended to serve as a theology lesson, the Catholic Churches and all of the Orthodox churches, including those Orthodox Churches such as the Coptic Church which are not Eastern Orthodox but rather Oriental Orthodox, all hold that ordination must be done by a validly consecrated Bishop and in the proper form and they always have, going back to Apostolic times. Again, as I am not a theologian I'm not going to get into it, and it is complicated to a degree, I'm not going to try to set this out in any advanced form. But the gist of it is that in the view of the Apostolic Churches in order to have valid Holy Orders and Sacraments you need a Bishop who confers Holy Orders in the proper form.  So, that's why the Orthodox of all types and the Catholic Church recognize each others sacraments as valid even though there is a schism between them, and that's why the Catholic Church recognizes the same as to a church like the Polish National Church.  Practices within the church differ as to how this should be done, but the churches recognize each others Communion and Confession, for examples, as perfectly valid.

It's interesting to note in this context, and it serves, I hope, to demonstrate the point, that both the Eastern Orthodox and the Catholic churches recognize the validity of the Holy Orders and sacraments of the Oriental Orthodox, who are quite different in some ways, and quite similar others, to both of them.  Due to historical developments, these churches were only able to send representatives to the first three ecumenical councils; the First Council of Nicaea in 325, the First Council of Constantinople in 381 and the Council of Ephesus in 431.  History conspired to prevent their attendance at later councils.  Most Americans are completely unfamiliar with these churches but, in some larger cities in some parts of the country, you can find examples of them, usually the Coptic Church of Alexandria or the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church.

Saint Mary's Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church in Denver Colorado. The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church is a non-Chalcedonian (Oriental Orthodox) church. This church is located in north eastern Denver. Parishioners always wear white on Sunday's in this denomination, in recollection of their Baptismal garments. 

Before we go further, lest we create confusion and anger, all of these churches recognize the usual form of Protestant baptism as valid (but not some that are outside of the usual form) and at least the first marriage of any type, including marriages that have no religious ceremony at all, or are non Christian, except in the cases where their own members marry outside of the church without a dispensation.  As this isn't a treatise on these topics I'll stop there lest I create more confusion than I already have.  But, it's interesting to note that all of these faith would never "re Baptize" a baptized Christian that was baptized in the usual form (there are exceptions in some faiths that use different forms, IE., not really the standard Christian baptism). 

Whew. . . that's a long winded introduction to autocephalous. 

Okay, back to that. 

In the Eastern Orthodox world, and in the Orthodox world in general, history has meant that the various Bishop's seats became very spread out early on and there were very real difficulties in their communicating with each other.  In the Catholic world, at the same time, this was much less the case.  In Eastern Orthodoxy, therefore, there came to be a day during which the Patriarch of the Church found that it would best serve the Orthodox in some areas if their churches became self governing.  So, for example, the Russian Orthodox Church was made autocephalous.  It had its own Bishops, etc., and it was made autocephalous by the Patriarch of Constantinople so that it could govern itself.  

Holy Transfiguration of Christ Cathedral in North Denver.  This Cathedral is a Cathedral of the Orthodox Church in America, a church which traces its origin to the Russian Orthodox Church after the Russian Revolution.  Russian Orthodoxy in the United States has a bit of a complicated history on the topic of autocephaly post 1917.  There are two bodies that descend from the Russian Orthodox Church in the US today, and I frankly don't quite understand the relationship between the two, but this Cathedral in Denver reflects part of Denver's Russian Orthodox community.  The church dates to 1898. 
Now, as this can get really confusing, it should also be noted that various Oriental Orthodox Churches are also self governing and as that would lengthen this thread out infinitely, I'm not going into that.  As noted above there are more than one Oriental Orthodox churches, they are all in communion with one another, and they are all self governing.  They all have relationships with the Eastern Orthodox and the Catholic church in modern times and they are all fairly close given the history cited above. 
I should further note that while the rift between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church has not been fully healed (while I'd also note, as noted above, that rift is less of a rift than others suppose) the Eastern Orthodox are all Eastern Orthodox.  So just because the Russian Orthodox Church has a different head than the Greek Orthodox Church does not mean that they are not in full communion with each other.  Indeed, I'd note that at least members of the Ukrainian Catholic Church in the Ukraine simply refer to the Russian Orthodox Church as "the Greek Church".
 
Holy Transfiguration of Our Lord Church in Ninilchik Alaska.  This community has had a Russian Orthodox Church since 1846, but this structure dates to 1901.  It is a regular Russian Orthodox Church in the Orthodox Church of America's Diocese of Anchorage, subject to the jurisdiction of the Orthodox Church in America, which is one of two bodies that formed in the U.S. to govern Russian Orthodox Churches following the Russian Revolution.  The Orthodox Church in America is an autocephalous Eastern Orthodox church that started to govern its affairs separately when Patriarch Tikhon of Moscow directed all Russian Orthodox churches outside of Russia and was originally the Russian Greek Orthodox Church in America.  It was granted autocephaly by the Russian Orthodox Church in Russia in 1970 and changed its name at that time, although the validity of that action is disputed by some.

Got it? Well good to go.

So, um. . . aren't you going to complete the pictures for the other churches referenced above.

Well. . . I will, but only with great trepidation.

Is there autocephaly in the Catholic Church?  Well, the Catholic Church doesn't use that term, and the answer would be, I think basically no, in the sense of the term as used above.  That's because autocephalous in the Orthodox sense means those churches basically report to no one, although they are in communion with each other.  I.e., all Eastern Orthodox are in communion with one another (save for schisms, such as that of the Old Believers) and all Oriental Orthodox are in communion with one another (keeping in mind that this doesn't mean that they believe that only their own Holy Orders and sacraments are valid, it doesn't mean that, as the Orthodox and the Catholic churches all recognize that in regards to each other).  But the Catholic Church does have several Rites and those Rites are in fact mostly self governing.
 
Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Lander Wyoming.  This church was unique in Wyoming (and might still be) at the time I took this photograph as the Priest there was "bi ritual", which meant that he could offer the Divine Liturgy in the Latin Rite and an Eastern Rite, and the church did in fact conduct services at different times in different Rites.  Things like this are not terribly uncommon in some localities.  Additionally, it is not terribly uncommon in some localities for Catholic churches to host an Orthodox parish community if they lack their own church.

This is confusing for people who aren't familiar with the Catholic Church and indeed many people use the term Roman Catholic Church and the Catholic Church interchangeably. In fact, Catholics don't use the term "Roman Catholic" officially at all, although its become so common that many Latin Rite Catholics have fully adopted the term.  The Latin Rite of the Catholic Church is the largest Christian denomination in the world and so the confusion is natural enough, but there are also twenty three non Latin Rite Catholic churches.

Yes, twenty three.  That means that are twenty four churches within the Catholic church.

Each one of these churches has its own primate, i.e. a cleric who is its head. For example, the relatively well known Maronite church has Patriarch Moran Mor Bechara Boutros al-Rahi ( بشارة بطرس الراعي the 77th Maronite Patriarch of Antioch.  He's also a Cardinal.

What, the are non Latin Rite Cardinals in the Catholic Church?  

Yes, there are.  And of course, there would be.

All of this is noted as the various twenty four churches in the Catholic Church are in fact mostly self governing.  They all have a primate who is at the head of their church, just like the autocephalous Orthodox churches do.  They differ, however, in that the Pope is the overall had of the Church, and the Pope is also head of the Latin Rite as he's the Bishop of Rome.

Now, just to keep the complication level up, recall that the Orthodox also recognize the Bishop of Rome as the first of the Bishops. They regard him as the first among equals.

So, there isn't autocephaly in the Catholic Church, but there is quite a bit of independence between the various Rites.

Well then, (straying into dangerous territory) what about the Protestant churches you mentioned.  Aren't they basically autocephalous churches in schism?

Well, I suppose that would depend on your views but neither they nor the Catholic church regard them that way.  And part of that, from the Catholic point of view, has to do with Apostolic succession.
 
Let's start with the Anglican Communion, which is the group of Protestant churches (although they do not all view themselves that way, for which Apostolic succession is most frequently claimed.  This is enormously complicated by the fact that the Anglican Communion itself is a collection of churches with widely varying views on almost every topic.  Some in the Anglican Communion, and usually those who view their church as a type of Catholic church not in communion with Rome, hold Apostolic succession to be both real and necessary.  For example, John Newman, while an Anglican cleric and a prime mover in the Oxford movement, wrote "We must necessarily consider none to be really ordained who has not been thus ordained".  Newman, of course, later came to the conclusion that Anglican orders were not valid and he converted to Catholicism, becoming a Cardinal.  Many conservatives in the Anglican Communion continue to hold this opinion and regard their church as a separated one with valid Apostolic succession dating back to the schism that took place under King Henry VIII.  Of note, most of the bishops, but not all of the priests by any means, went with Henry when he separated the English church from Rome.

Church of the Holly Family Anglican Catholic Church in Casper, Wyoming.  This church would nto be recognized as Catholic by the Catholic Church, but it is part of the conservative branch of the Anglican Communion that regards the Anglican Communion as a separated Catholic church.

This topic became serious enough in the Anglican world that it ended up being a topic addressed by Pope Leo XIII who found that Anglican claims to Apostolic succession were "absolutely null and utterly void".  This was due to the changes that were made to the very Protestant and radical King Edward VI.  It is for this reason that Anglican clergymen entering the Catholic church as Priests, which has not been uncommon in recent years, are ordained as Catholic Priests.  And this points out the difficulty in this topic as Apostolic succession is not necessarily regarded as important by all Anglicans.  The Anglican Communion has a wide variety of views on matters, ranging from liberal to conservative, and one of the things they vary on is the nature of Apostolic succession.  To complicate maters even further some Anglican conservatives regards some of Anglican Priests as validly consecrated and others as not being, including Bishops, but as this isn't a treatise on that topic, I'll not go into it.  I'll conclude, however, by noting that Pope Leo's proclamation was troubling to certain branches of the Anglican Communion who have attempted to rectify it by having ordinations done by Old Catholics, which the Catholic Church regards as schismatic.  Old Catholic holy orders are valid, in Catholic eyes.
 
Anglican Church of the Holy  Trinity in Toronto, Ontario.  Sort of reflecting the history of Canada and Toronto, this very traditional church is apparently a liberal Anglican Church.  Toronto was once a bastion of English conservatism in Canada, which it certainly is not today.

Something similar sort of oddly may, or may not have, happened early in the history of the Methodist Church, but it's not really known for sure.  The Methodist movement was started by John Wesley but it wasn't originally a separate church, but a movement within the Anglican Church.  Wesley instructed his followers to receive the sacraments from Anglican Priests, and stated; "We believe it would not be right for us to administer either Baptism or the Lord's Supper unless we had a commission so to do from those Bishops whom we apprehend to be in a succession from the Apostles."  So he clearly viewed Apostolic succession as necessary.  At some point his views may have modified, as the Methodist started to ordain their own ministers.  However, some also claim that Wesley was secretly ordained by a visiting Greek Orthodox Bishop, so he had, they claim, Apostolic succession.  The formal split of the Methodist from the Anglican church came in 1805, and as I know little about it, I'll stop there.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Wy0JhQeLGFo/TXopCP34fLI/AAAAAAAAAoo/9TKsYG2uqBo/s1600/IMGP0380.JPG
Holy Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church, Denver Colorado., built in 1887.  It's difficult to photograph, as it's nearly always in perpetual shade as very tall buildings have been built up around it. This is, unfortunately, compounded here as these photographs were taken on a very dreary day.  Of note, the church declares that it is the Holy Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church, but in modern terms it's usually called the Holy Trinity Methodist Church or the Holy Trinity United Methodist Church.  Separation from the Anglican Church came in 1805, but the name of the Methodist Church continued to reflect its origin for many years thereafter.
Anyhow, I don't think anyone would regard it as autocephalous in the way we've been discussing it, although its history is interesting in regard to the view of its founder on Apostolic succession.
 
 
I guess that leaves us with the Lutheran Church.  Interestingly there is a split of views, sort of like that in the Anglican Communion, but perhaps more pronounced.

The Lutheran Church really took hold in Scandinavia, and there the church very much takes the position that it has preserved Apostolic succession.  Indeed, in the Scandinavian countries the Lutheran churches take the position that they did not create a new church at all, but rather that the Lutheran movement in their countries simply improved the existing church.  This position is taken to a lessor degree, however, in Germany, whose Lutheran churches were merged by order of the government with the Calvinist churches in 1817.  Still, the conservative elements in Germany, and some in Scandinavia, have taken the step of receiving ordinations in their communions from schismatic Catholic bishops of the types discussed above to attempt to make certain that their Holy Orders and sacraments are valid.  Other Lutheran groups, however are indifferent to the question, in part reflecting early church governance under Luther.  An aspect of this, additionally, is that in Germany the sitting Catholic bishops did not go along with Luther, not one, so there were no ordinations thereafter that could have been regarded as valid, from a Catholic prospective.  In Scandinavia, however, the sitting Catholic Bishops retained their positions, which is somewhat ironically due to the conversion of the countries being forced by the crown, which had promised not to do it, but there were changes (apparently) to form, although I can't comment on them as I do not know what they were.  It's clear that the Catholic Church does not regard the Lutheran Church as schismatic but completely separated, just as the Anglican Communion is regarded, so no autocephaly here.
 
As a complete side note, its interesting that when faced with the same dilemma that the German Lutherans were faced with early on, and maybe the Methodist were, that being no Bishops who would ordain Priests for them, the Russian Old Believers made a completely different choice.  They took Apostolic succession so seriously that they simply lacked any clergy at all as their ordained Priests died.  The pain of this was deeply felt and in recent years they have obtained ordained Priests from Orthodox Bishops that are willing to ordain Priest for them and with whom they are theologically comfortable, but for many years this ultra conservative group, fully supportive of Apostolic succession and fully aware of the need of valid sacraments, went without as no Bishop would support the. The Russian Orthodox Church as tried to bring them back in, and has even apologized to them for acts during the separation, but they aren't having that, so far.

The Wyoming Tribune for March 26, 1917: Guardsmen Return To Service


Guardsmen nationwide was the headline in the Wyoming Tribune, as opposed to the State's troops as discussed in the Laramie Boomerang. 

Cheyenne's paper was noting that Colorado cavalry, just arrived at Ft. D. A. Russell fresh from border service, was now set not to muster out at all.  Late in the process of mustering out, it didn't look like they were going to.

The Laramie Boomerang for March 26, 1917. The Guard is mobilized again.


They'd barely made it home, and now they were being called back into service.  The Wyoming National Guard was mobilized once again.

This time the plan was for one of the battalions to be mounted, in what would prove to be an irony. while cavalry was not obsolete in 1917, a battalion sized cavalry unit would have been of more utility on the border than it would have been in Europe.  Of course, in March 1917 it wasn't clear that the Guard would be serving in Europe, or even that the Army would be.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Page Updates: 2017

Page Updates; 2017


March 25, 2017

They Were Lawyers:  Branch Rickey, Chuck Schumer, Kellyanne Conway

They Were Soldiers:  Branch Rickey, Ty Cobb, Christopher "Christy" Mathewson, George Harold Sisler, Ryan Zinke

Georgian Orthodox Church declares its resumed autocephaly.



 Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia Kyrion II, who was elevated to that role upon the Georgian Orthodox Church declaring autocephaly in 1917.  He'd returned from monastic exile to assume that role.  He was murdered by an unknown assailant on June 27, 1918 and his murder remains a mystery to this day.

On this day in 1917, the Georgian Orthodox Church restored its autocephalous (self governing) status within the Orthodox family of Apostolic churches.

This is likely a somewhat complicated story and I'm not fafamiliar with it but it seems that it had been autocephalous since 1010, however, in 1811 it was put under the jurisdiction of the Russian Orthodox Church, with their being a great deal of protest about that in the Georgian community. 

Following the overthrow of Czar Nicholas II the Georgian Bishops unilaterally restored autocephaly on this date. In spite of the obvious stress the Russian Empire was under, the Russian Orthodox Church did not accept this.  Oddly enough, in spite of enduring two decades of Stalinist repression of the most severe varieties, it was Stalin who ordered the Russian Orthodox Church to recognize its independence in 1943, at which time Stalin was easing up on the churches in an effort to gain the support of every element of Soviet society in the face of the German invasion.

 

Recruiting for the Navy: Printing House Square, New York City. March 25, 1917.




New York City, March 25, 1917.  Recruiting for the Navy.  Printing House Square.

Poster Saturday: Grow More Food


The Best Post of the Week of March 19, 2017

The Best Post of the Week of March 19, 2017:

Putting the Boomer Era to Bed: The rebellious rise of Orthodoxy

"Virtue, modesty, obedience, self-mastery…these are now considered forms of oppression and when heresy is the norm, the only rebellion left is orthodoxy."  

G. W. Chesterton.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Today In Wyoming's History: It seemed wet

Today In Wyoming's History: It seemed wet:

The Casper Star Tribune is reporting that:
Wyoming’s three main winter months –December through February – were the wettest in the state’s recorded history, according to the National Weather Service.
Almost 5.5 inches of precipitation fell on the state this season, breaking the previous record of 4.93 inches set in 1898.
It seemed wet, that's for sure.

And its not really over yet.

 Image may contain: outdoor

Today In Wyoming's History: Wyoming Experiences a Population Decline for the f...

Today In Wyoming's History: Wyoming Experiences a Population Decline for the f...: The Casper Star Tribune is reporting that: Wyoming’s population contracted for the first time in nearly three decades, likely because ...

Friday on the Farm: Successful Farming; Large Family Farms: Few in Number, Big Output

Not a good trend in my view.
Super sized farms, with high productivity, means fewer farms and fewer farmers. And, necessarily, corporate ownership of those farms.

The Cheyenne State Leader for March 24, 1917: Germans raising army in Mexico?



It's odd to see how focused on Mexico the US remained as it started to rush towards war with Germany.  In today's leader we learn, supposedly, that Germans were flooding in from Guatemala to form an army in Mexico.

Something like that, you'd think, would be fairly easy to notice.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

It's Paddy, not Patty

Okay, I admit that this would have been more appropriate for St. Patrick's Day, but I missed the saint's day as I was distracted and busy.

St. Patrick was a Roman Britain who went by the name Patricius in his writings, which we would expect.  Unknown, I suppose, to most moderns he left a short biography of his life.  He came from an influential British family.  Showing the extent of the remaining Roman world, his father's name was Calpurnius and his grandfather's name Potitus.  His family was devout, with his father being a Catholic Deacon and his Grandfather a Catholic Priest.  Before we get the "oh my gosh, a Priest who was married!" gasp, the rule prohibiting Latin Priest from marrying, which is a rule, not a dogma, had not yet been imposed, so that would hardly have been unusual.  His father was also a decurion, a sort of Roman city councilman.

Patricius was not devout as a young man, but he became so when he was kidnapped by Irish raiders at age 16.  He was a slave for six years, herding sheep for part of that time and becoming increasingly devout, until a voice told him to return home.  Escaping and traveling 200 miles across Ireland he persuaded the captian of a ship to take him on board.  He continued his religious studies and then travelled to what is now France to study them further, being ordained there.  He then returned to Ireland to become the stout hearted evangelizer of the Irish.

Okay, what's that have to do with the title?

Well this,  To St. Patrick, in his native tongue, his name wias Patricius.  In Irish that became Pádraig.  It doesn't even really sound like Patrick.  


The Irish diminuitive of that is Páidín.

To the English, and hence to some Irish, Páidín sounds like "Paddy".

Paddy, not Patty.

Patty is some sort of English diminutive for Patricia.

Now, there are a lot of Patrick's and Patricia's in my family. Zillions.  And occasionally somebody tries to affect an Irish accent and welcome us a "Happy St. Patty's Day", or say something foolish like "Patty me boy".  Bah.  

It's St. Patrick's Day, and if you are from a real Irish family, not one that simply puts on a button that says something foolish like "Kiss me, I'm Irish!" that is a Saints day.  Not a day to wear green and drink green beer (and if you were Irish, you'd be drinking Guinness or Murphy's, not green Coors).  And to the saint, he likely was called Patricius by his family and probably Pádraig by the Irish, who likely had a tough time with his Roman name.  But nobody, I"m quite certain, called him Patty, ever, or Paddy, for that matter.

Patrick, fwiw, is the English version of  Pádraig, because English came to dominate Ireland as the language during the long English occupation.  The Irish name Pádraig never went away, but Patrick became quite common.  But not in the diminutive.

And, fwiw, while there are Irish men who get tagged with the diminutive Páidín or Paddy, not all of them do by a long shot.  In my heavily Irish family almost all the Patrick men end up being called "Pat".  Some of the Patricia's end up being called Pat as well, and some end up being called Trisha. 

But nobody is called Patty.

The Seattle Waterfront


Copyrighted on March 23, 1917.

Fairview Church Wells, Texas


Copyrighted on this date in 1917. Somewhere in Texas.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Why not a USS Loretta Prefectus Walsh?

I posted an item yesterday about the Navy's first female sailor, Chief Yeoman Loretta Prefectus Walsh:

Loretta Perfectus Walsh joined the U.S. Navy, something that only became a legal possibility two days prior when first authorized by the Secretary of the Navy.  She joined at the rank of Chief Yeoman.

 Navy recruiting poster aimed specifically at women.
Apparently a lot of people find her story interesting, as it went, in one day, from being posted to being one of the top ten most viewed threads on the blog.  I received a couple of complaints about not filling in more of her story.

Well, that's hard to do as information on her isn't readily available.  I did learn that she was apparently a nurse.

What she definitely was, was first. 

With all the news on women in the service it occurs to me, even though I oppose women being in combat, that the Navy ought to consider naming a ship for Chief Yeoman Walsh.  Sure, she didn't stay on the burning deck of a frigate as it went down at sea, but she did die in the service (and I'll expound on the nature of disease in the early 20th Century a bit later, as I'm finding that not only topical, but due to complaints about that, not well understood in our current era).  

Maybe it could be a hospital ship, or whatever type of medical vessel we now have.

So, anyhow, I'm in favor of a USS Loretta Perfectus Walsh.  I may be darned near the only one, but first to join, and she died as a result of it.  She deserves it.

Enough already


He lies the way no American politician has lied before. The occasional untruths that other recent presidents have spoken — often unwittingly — do not compare with the frequency, intensity and deliberateness with which Donald Trump offers falsehoods.
The New York Times, editorial of March 21, 2017.

We can't expect the New York Times to like Donald Trump, but the Times isn't far off the mark.

How much more of this can the country take?

It isn't as if Trump needs to be telling the whoppers he is, or if there's an element of truth to them, to explain them. He's won the election, and he's been fairly successful so far in getting his agenda up and running.  

There's been some speculation that his early strategy is simply to fatigue his opponents in the public mind so that he has no or little public opposition.  Maybe that's working, but it isn't very dignified and its unnecessary.  News of the sort we're getting every day is just too much, and its something the country hasn't endured since Watergate, which itself was all because of unnecessary deception.