Comments Posted By CQ
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“Progressivism” is a euphemism for Marxism…
Progressives were Republicans, not Marxists, and my understanding is that the modern movement by that name looks to the “Trust Busting” era of Theodore Roosevelt rather than anything by Karl Marx.
» Posted By CQ On June 17, 2013 @ 6:56 pm
The problem is that that Progressive morality, by hiding ideas that are inimical to the moral tradition by wrapping them in the language of the tradition, requires us to make sure that people, especially within the Church, understand what the tradition really says and means.
Today it is a cultural assumption among many on the right that the poor are necessarily morally inferior (lazy, ignorant, unwise, etc.) to the wealthy, which is just as pernicious the left’s assumption that the wealthy are necessarily morally inferior (greedy, thieves, selfish, etc.) to the poor. What you identify as a problem with “Progressives” is equally true of “Conservatives,” especially our brethren on the right who’ve swallowed Libertarian economic theory.
The Church should not be a politics free zone, but neither should it have political litmus tests. Putting things in proper perspective always means putting Christ, the incarnate expression of God’s ineffable mercy and great compassion, first.
And yes, I know some who’ve fled the errors of their former congregations, and Orthodoxy opens its arms to them. But I don’t see that dynamic nearly as often as I see the proof of Dostoyevsky’s observation: “Beauty will save the world.” Then again, the members of my parish run the political gamut, and the first question “Are you Orthodox?” is most likely followed by “Are you Russian?” (This speaks to an interest that is different from moral teaching or political identification.) My experience traveling is that often the second question was designed to affirm the political views of the questioner…which were assumed to be morally superior to any other political views.
» Posted By CQ On June 17, 2013 @ 6:33 pm
This Most Christians who are received into the Eastern Orthodox Church as adults do so for the same reasons that others embrace the Roman Catholic Church: They are tired of the moral relativism or the shallow theological traditions of their former communions.
This finds its echo in this comment, from an NPR article about partisanship:
Although many people like to describe themselves as independent, partisanship has become an important aspect of identity. Some are more loyal to their partisan leanings than their own church, says University of Notre Dame political scientist David Campbell.
“Our findings indicate that for many but not all Americans, when they’re faced with this choice between their politics and religion, they hold fast to their politics and switch religion, or more often switch out of their religion,” he says.
To me this tendency is epitomized when we identify churches by political labels: “Progressive” and “Traditional” standing in for “liberal” and “conservative.”
As for me, and so many like me, we did not come to Orthodoxy while fleeing something else. We were drawn…some slowly, some quickly, to Christ. My great mistake was attending a Divine Liturgy. On Pascha. That experience quite literally changed my life.
And to this day the intonation of “Blessed is the Kingdom…” stirs my soul.
Considering that most people come to Orthodoxy for any reason other than finding Christ is to sell the Church, and those who’ve made the journey, short.
» Posted By CQ On June 17, 2013 @ 2:08 pm
I used to love our trips up and down the length of the 99. We’d stop in Bakersfield, Fresno, Merced, Modesto, Sacramento, Oroville, and then up to Redding…often taking side trips through the Sierras and “Gold Rush Country.” We’d then head west to Eureka and south again on the 1 and 101 (depending on the stretch and whether we were in a hurry or not.) The 99 portion of that was a trip my dad, an accountant, did quarterly to see clients. Somehow we were always stopping at a client’s house on the first part of our vacation…the coast, however, was all fun and games.
Remember when the 5 ended abruptly near Los Banos, and started again in Stockton?
Seems to me that the valley suffers from the same ailment as the Inland Empire: inexpensive land and a lust for “growth.” The result is speculative development instead of long-term investment, that is speculators come in cheap and get out as quickly as possible, leaving investors (read: new owners and lenders) holding the bag when the bubble inevitably bursts.
Remember when the valley’s agricultural communities used to triple or quadruple in size during sowing and harvest seasons? The effort to stabilize migrant workers in fixed communities (and thus avoid the problems of large migrant populations) has resulted in a large underemployed population with its own problems.
That’s tough to address.
As for the Fresno Scraper: that’s an achievement with global reach!
» Posted By CQ On June 1, 2013 @ 4:02 pm
We each live in a different part of California, small farming communities not facing the same problems or having the same resources as large urban areas. So both of our experiences are not going to be true for all Californians. This is why the Statewide data matters, because it corrects both of our direct experience with objective measures across the State.
Fresno (and Stockton) are outliers because of three things: 1) statistically they have poorer populations than the rest of the State, 2) statistically they have younger populations than the rest of the State and 3) statistically they have more foreclosures than the rest of the State. To claim they’re just like everywhere else is to forget just how not-like everyone else they are.
And I’d note that the San Joaquin Valley is home to 5 of the top 10 foreclosure cities in the nation, which all by itself has to be destabilizing to the entire region. (Two others in the top 10: Vallejo and San Bernardino…which is teetering on bankruptcy.)
Loved your story about the mountain families and etc. That’s rich history. A bit like our family stories of when “the County” was relatively lawless, and started just west of Hollywood…which is why there’s a “Sunset Strip” there now.
» Posted By CQ On May 28, 2013 @ 12:10 am
Chicago and Detroit are not in California the last time I looked.
We usually have “June gloom” this time of year, but today is just another sunny day with a light breeze. Took a walk with some neighbors to breakfast on an outside patio surrounded by well-behaved children and dogs and adults, and bougainvillea all in bloom. Makes us thank God for His blessings.
As Mack says at the end of the movie Grand Canyon, “I think it’s not all bad.”
» Posted By CQ On May 27, 2013 @ 3:30 pm
The subprime meltdown was caused by the use of financial tools poorly understood by all which generated incredible profits for a few by fraudulently inflating housing prices to justify unwarranted ratings on real-estate-backed investments.
Those mortgages were a new way to counterfeit money, more pernicious than actual printing press counterfeiting because the false money was much harder to see. When that money came to be seen for what it was it triggered a panic because no-one knew how much of that counterfeit money they had in their holdings…every bank and lender had been lying to each other and assuming they were the only ones counterfeiting value…and they still don’t.
Redlining is pernicious and antithetical to a truly free market.
Requiring 20% down on real estate is prudent, but would slow development as most developers of large projects don’t put up nearly that much in actual cash, but rather fund their developments in a house-of-cards of leveraged assets. FWIW, slowing development is not such a bad thing, though it would mean higher housing costs for buyers and renters alike.
I find it entertaining that you used “begs the question” because that’s one of those things that I’d expect traditionalists to eschew.
Begging the question (Latin petitio principii, “assuming the initial point”) is a type of informal fallacy in which an implicit premise would directly entail the conclusion. Begging the question is one of the classic informal fallacies in Aristotle’s Prior Analytics. Some modern authors consider begging the question to be a species of circulus in probando (Latin, “circle in proving”) or circular reasoning. Were it not begging the question, the missing premise would render the argument viciously circular, and while never persuasive, arguments of the form “A therefore A” are logically valid because asserting the premise while denying the self-same conclusion is a direct contradiction. In general, validity only guarantees the conclusion must follow given the truth of the premises. Absent that, a valid argument proves nothing: the conclusion may or may not follow from faulty premises—although in this particular example, it’s self-evident that the conclusion is false if and only if the premise is false (see logical equivalence and logical equality).
Some authorities consider the use of “begs the question” as a way of saying “raises the question” or “evades the question” to be no longer mistaken because it has attained such wide usage, despite having “long been condemned by usage commentators as incorrect or sloppy”.
One last note: Coyote are native out here, and they’ve really become urban wildlife nationwide.
» Posted By CQ On May 27, 2013 @ 1:59 pm
Proximity absolutely matters, George. I find your assumption that I have no proximity to the things you hang your hat upon to be grossly unwarranted.
I step out my front door and am greeted by homelessness and gangs on the one hand and entitled wealthy faux-liberals on the other. That’s what’s within my proximity…all within 300′ of my front door.
My spouse worked in a trauma center in downtown Los Angeles for years. You know, the place where they take gang bangers and homeless people and undocumented people to get treated for problems unknown in most cities and banished from the suburbs. One sister-in-law taught in a classroom in which exactly one student’s family spoke English at home. Another taught in a classroom where over 30 years the white population became a black population and then became a trans-Asian population. My brother leads a school district in which >60% of the student body is “Latino,” a term that means less with every passing generation.
The entire population of Tulsa County is just a shade over 600,000. The entire population of Los Angeles County is a shade under 9.9 million. Our direct experience living in the midst of 9.9 million people is going to be very different from those who live on the edge of 600,000.
This is why I look to data instead of personal anecdotes to help understand what’s really going on, and often the data and my personal experience are different. When that happens rather than reject the data I strive to understand how my personal experience could be so different from that reported in an objective manner, and find that what’s really going on is often not what I assumed it was at all. That discovery doesn’t discount my experience or the data, but rather results in a better understanding of both.
Proximity matters to our perception, but the data tends to tell a larger and dispassionate story. When the two diverge it’s always worth examining why they did that, rather than simply assuming that our experience is the sine qua non of “the truth.”
» Posted By CQ On May 27, 2013 @ 1:21 pm
Never generalize from the specific. It is a classic fallacy.
Take a look at this graph: http://www.clrsearch.com/Fresno-Demographics/CA/Crime-Rate
I have no doubt, Jackson, that your reports of criminality are absolutely true, what my direct experience across the State (from Eureka to San Diego, and I confess I only get to Shasta County once or twice a year) and all the data indicate is that Fresno is an outlier rather than an “average” city in our State.
» Posted By CQ On May 27, 2013 @ 1:01 pm
Since you don’t like the New York Times, try Business Week:
There’s also a lot of real conservative values expressed in their cover story from April:
» Posted By CQ On May 26, 2013 @ 10:29 pm
Let’s compare three cities: The median household income in all three cities is below the national median household income. The median age in all three cities is below the national median age.
Fresno grew 20% in the 2000′s to nearly 500,000 people.
Tulsa grew 0% in the 2000′s to stay flat at just under 400,000.
Stockton grew 16% in the 2000′s to just under 300,000.
So why did the two with growth go bankrupt and the one that flatlined did not? Simple. Stockton (the smallest of the three) had the third highest foreclosure rate in the nation, Fresno had the 10th highest. Tulsa was 20th.
This proves that quick growth fueled by sub-prime mortgages is a phantom that undermines not just families and banks, but the health of cities as well.
When Orange County went bankrupt in 1994, a larger bankruptcy affecting a far larger population, California continued to prosper. People who lived in Orange County continued to prosper. The world did not end, the wheels did not fall off the State, the County or its Cities. Most businesses and families were unaffected by the bankruptcy or the management of the transition back to solvency.
To be clear, bankruptcy is a bad thing and I don’t mean to be blasé about it, but it’s not the worst thing ever, and it’s not close to a sign of decline…when a municipality goes bankrupt it’s usually a sign of political incompetence, but sometimes (as with Stockton and Fresno) a sign of being caught in a tsunami that the cities were too small to cope with by themselves.
Those who predict California’s demise lack perspective. They always have.
By the way it was lovely here today.
» Posted By CQ On May 26, 2013 @ 10:14 pm
This morning’s NYTimes pretty much puts a bullet in the “decline” meme:
To Recap: Instead of declining, the population is growing 0.1% slower than the national average. Instead of crime going up, crime is going down. And instead of California going bust, the State’s budget is a large step into order.
Your decline meme and “the source” are disproven by every single fact no matter where you look.
» Posted By CQ On May 26, 2013 @ 11:36 am
Crime in CA has been falling pretty steadily since about 1990, which is now 23 years (nearly a quarter century) ago. The disconnect between facts and perception has entirely to do with changes in our perception.
Verifiable CA crime data is at this link: http://oag.ca.gov/cjsc/keyfacts
And Central American gangs aren’t having nearly the disastrous effect on municipalities that budget cuts and political gridlock are having. Seriously, if you think MS-13 is responsible for the decline in schools, declining infrastructure (like crumbling bridges and water works) and cuts in emergency services you’re giving them waaay more credit than they’re due, and absolving those who are in fact responsible for these things of their personal accountability for their actions.
My point remains: VDH is “the source” because you agree with him. He provides anecdotes and argumentation that support your shared narrative, but no data.
And what I think I’ve amply demonstrated is that the facts do not support your (population decline due to “productive people leaving”), or his (spike in criminality leading to a distopian condition), perceptions and declarations of what’s “really” going on in California. If anything, the reports disprove that narrative.
California bashing is a sport, I get it, but shouldn’t reality have a seat at the table?
» Posted By CQ On May 25, 2013 @ 4:01 pm
Interestingly VDH and I are about the same age, I’m 3rd generation Californian, with great-grandparents buried here in the 1890s.
He grew up in rural CA, south of Fresno. I grew up in suburban CA, south of Los Angeles. He’s no doubt more erudite than I, I have no doubt that my work has been seen and appreciated by more people than his. Though we’re technically peers we have very different views of the same things.
And what makes him “the source” and me not so is that you agree with his views, and disagree with mine. That’s fine, but let’s not pretend that there’s verifiable data in this article.
Nonetheless, the criminality he recounts is real, but is far more isolated in place and time than he makes it seem. The immigration problem is real, though accounts for less crime than our own citizens. The cultural changes he sees are real enough, but the generational shift he sees is a chimera.
The political dysfunction and its effects are real as well, though Jerry Brown seems to be succeeding in turning things around despite the monkey-wrenching of government that has been going on since 1977 or so. CA proved is that if we monkey-wrench government things do not get better.
But overall the article reads like the rants against our (VDH and my) generation: lazy long-haired hippies who ran off to the mountains instead of working and listened to that gosh-durned rock music all day!
Look, I hire kids from the generation VDH rants about, and they’re really great kids. Hard-working, fearless, creative, thoughtful, diligent, not to mention quite a bit savvier than I was at their age. And yeah, I don’t “get” tattoo culture, but it’s not mine so why would I? It’s fashion. (I never “got” Nancy Reagan either. She always looked emaciated to me.)
I’m happy he’s finding a way to deal with his pessimism by pumping water and etc., because he sounds like a really unhappy person.
Of course, some of that goes with fashioning oneself as a eminence grise…
» Posted By CQ On May 25, 2013 @ 2:50 am
How is it that you require more than Metropolitan Jonah does?
I ask this seriously. You have clearly taken more offense than the man who was allegedly offended, or you are less forgiving than the man who was allegedly offended.
How does that work, exactly?
» Posted By CQ On June 12, 2013 @ 12:50 am
Like you I recognize that people can engage in “… lies … manipulations … machinations …” for all manner of reasons. I focused on the sole reason given here, that the OCA’s Bishops were intent on abandoning Orthodoxy in favor of the theology of the ECUSA heretics. That has been repeated here multiple times, and you yourself walked a fine line that suggested (but did not claim) that you had actual knowledge of such a thing.
Otherwise it seems that you’ve agreed with the content of my post, but did that in a manner that sought to make it look as if I were entirely wrong.
To me, a sinner, what struck me most disheartening was the justification of trading in gossip, rumors, innuendo and complete fictions by invoking the memory of St. Mark of Ephesus. St. Mark could point to the Union of Florence as the fact of an abandonment of Orthodoxy, to what actual thing do you point to prove that the OCA has similarly abandoned Orthodox teaching?
Truth: You don’t, because you can’t, because it doesn’t exist.
My view is simple: We should follow the example of the man whom this site once championed but now deems irrelevant: Metropolitan Jonah. His example of prayer and faithfulness, which was also the example of St. Mark of Ephesus, is consistent with Orthodox teaching and tradition down through the ages. He who saved the Three Young Men in the fire will not abandon those who cling to Him.
» Posted By CQ On June 12, 2013 @ 12:36 am
Now, please, give me a reason to trust them so that the healing really can begin.
Healing can really begin if you’re willing to acknowledge that the Bishops of the OCA have not deviated from teaching the Orthodox Faith.
It begins there because what lies at the root of understanding the Bishops’ actions as “… lies … manipulations … machinations …” is the conviction that they have been acting in bad faith in order to change the teaching of Orthodoxy to something like the teaching of the heretics in the ECUSA.
Truth: No homosexual union has been blessed in the OCA or any Orthodox jurisdiction. No Orthodox jurisdiction has broken communion with the OCA. Metropolitan Jonah, far from being destroyed, has been granted the Synod’s blessing for a great undertaking.
If we keep our eyes on Christ and our hearts open to the Holy Spirit healing cannot help but follow. If, on the other hand, we fill our minds with rumors, gossip, innuendo and predictions that never come true, we cannot help but find our trust repeatedly violated.
Only in God can our soul be at rest.
» Posted By CQ On June 10, 2013 @ 11:36 pm
I generally don’t do things this way, but please allow me to respond bit-by-bit.
This doesn’t help close the gaping dysfunctional, festering wound of the OCA. People still remember the wounds from Ben Lomond over 15 years ago and that was just one parish.
Ben Lomond had nothing to do with the OCA, and what’s been going on in the OCA is as different from what happened at Ben Lomond as a plane crash is from a political scandal. Ben Lomond was a plane crash, the OCA has been beset by political scandals of varying sizes and importance.
What is going on with Metropolitan Jonah is only symptomatic of other problems.
Metropolitan Jonah is a good and holy man, and I have benefitted directly from his kindness. When he was elected it was known that his leadership skills had never been tested. He was well-liked and gave one rousing speech, and on that basis the Synod bowed to the will of the AAC and elected him Metropolitan. Everyone hoped he’d “grow into the job.” But he never did…and when the going got tough he sought to avoid conflict rather than endure it, and resigned rather than seize the initiative. It is quite possible (and I do not claim first-hand knowledge for this) that he resigned because he knew in his heart that the Synod’s judgement was correct.
There has been an utter breakdown in trust and relationships.
I think that’s a broad overstatement, unless you don’t trust any of the clergy of the OCA.
I, for one, retain my trust in Jesus Christ, in the Church and in my confessor. I know what to expect of various and sundry priests and bishops, and have found they behave in entirely predictable manners. Sometimes they are predictably good, sometimes predictably disappointing, but I have not yet seen a single OCA Bishop or priest promulgate any teaching that is not entirely in keeping with Orthodox Tradition. That, to me, is what counts.
Time is not likely to heal any of this any time soon if we just keep ignoring it. It’s been tried, and I don’t see it working.
Refusing to pick at a scab is hardly “ignoring it.” Indeed, scratching what itches is often reflexive and unthinking, while refusing that urge takes awareness and discipline.
Instead of fulminating against the Synod, Metropolitan Jonah remained faithful to the Church and his prayer, an example that we should all follow. It is telling that he, the alleged victim of these events, is far more at peace with his situation and that of the OCA than those who do not have his confidence (or they would know of his plans) yet continue to agitate on his behalf.
If we wish to see healing we first have to be conscious of and willing to do the things that allow for healing rather than the reflexive things that prolong illness. Following Metropolitan Jonah’s example of faithfulness and prayer seems the correct path to me.
May the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, keep our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Christ is Risen!
» Posted By CQ On June 9, 2013 @ 5:49 pm
Picking at one’s scabs is a surer way to cause infection than healing.
Metropolitan Jonah’s present and future is brighter than any of you seem to know (I write this as you don’t seem aware of his plans for the future which the Synod has approved) because he chose to address his situation with prayer and faithfulness instead of outrage and schism.
We faithful should follow his example rather than advance the muddle of our own under-formed minds.
» Posted By CQ On June 8, 2013 @ 12:52 pm
Tornados struck hard in Oklahoma. People died, homes and entire communities destroyed.
Lord have mercy!
» Posted By CQ On May 20, 2013 @ 9:06 pm
As you’re defending the basis for this entire posting I thought I’d point out this:
“It seems possible” is testimony to your thought process, not reality. Two of the three words there are about how things appear to you and how your view is possible, regardless of how plausible or not it might be.
There is stark difference between the testimony of what “…seems possible..” and “…which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled…”
I take on faith the testimony framed in the latter manner. The testimony framed as you have is mere gossip, disclaimed by you as such. As testimony to your state of mind this is quite interesting, actually.
As testimony to the truth of anything it fails to meet even the weakest standard of evidence.
» Posted By CQ On May 21, 2013 @ 11:46 am
Indeed, He is Risen!
» Posted By CQ On May 7, 2013 @ 7:16 pm
The proper response is:
“Indeed, He is Risen!” “Αληθώς Ανέστη!” “Hakkan Qam!” “Воистину Воскресе!”
This is not about opinion. It’s about Orthodox Christianity.
I’ve read more on Monomakhos in the past couple of years about the failures of Orthodox leadership than anywhere else on the internet. And Monomakhos did not hesitate to take Google to task for respecting Cesar Chavez’ birthday instead of Western Easter.
So when Pascha came I was disappointed that Monomakos booted the ball. Apparently this upsets you, and I’m sorry for that.
Christ is Risen!
» Posted By CQ On May 6, 2013 @ 6:53 pm
Imagine if Google neglected the feast!
Monomakhos’ “Cesar Chavez” is the Pope recognizing the Confederacy: One schismatic recognizing another.
» Posted By CQ On May 6, 2013 @ 12:05 pm
Christ is Risen! Χριστός Ανέστη! Al-Masih-Qam! Христос Воскресе!
It’s understandable that postings have been slow here during Great Week, but I confess I am dismayed to see this
George Michalopulos says:
May 5, 2013 at 8:41 pm
You’re actually more right than you know. During the War Between the States, the Vatican was openly pro-Confederacy…. the Pope fashioned a crown of thorns with his own hands and sent it to Jefferson Davis during his imprisonment.
posted on the night of Pascha instead of the Paschal greeting.
» Posted By CQ On May 6, 2013 @ 2:34 am
Thanks for that background. Yes, being homeless makes quite a difference in all things. Homeless people are far more frequently the victims of every form of crime, from theft to every manner of assault. The homeless population also rarely reports crimes committed upon it, as it tends (with reason) to view law enforcement with great suspicion.
Your post also confirms that this is generally a crime of domination, “The gays consider straights they can buy beneath them in status. They get quite upset when they are turned down. Guess they think the homeless guy is just being uppity.”
And so thanks for that answer, it provides very helpful context to understanding your posts. I’m happy your homeless days are behind you, and wish you a blessed Pascha.
» Posted By CQ On May 4, 2013 @ 12:41 am
I dismissed no claim, Basil, but rather noted that it lies outside of my experience as a straight man in the “Sodoms” of Berkeley in the 1970s, San Francisco in the 1970s, 80s and 90s, and in West Hollywood in the 70s, 80s, 90s, 00s, and now the 10s.
We’ve long known that rapes are underreported without regard to the sexual orientation of either perpetrator or victim. Nothing new here, nor is the understanding that the vast majority of rapists are male, or that that rape is a crime of a male violently dominating another human being. (And if you wish to know what form of rape is totally underreported, check out the stories of women in the military.)
My two encounters were with closeted men who, for whatever reason, thought I’d be interested in playing with them. They were not “rapists,” seeking domination so much as closeted and therefore inept homosexuals desiring a hookup, after which they would no doubt have been ashamed of themselves and etc.
Which brings me back to the point of my post. I raised the question in the light of my experience because what is being reported lies outside my experience. I’ve seen no evidence of it, heard no stories like that (and I’ve seen and heard things I would have preferred I’d never seen or heard) and therefore wonder about what Michael is reporting.
I mean my question as a question, not a dismissal.
One of the striking things about the Gospel accounts of last night is the need to humiliate a man who is entirely under the control of a powerful group of men. The mockings, scourgings, the crown of thorns, etc. They know they’re going to kill him, but they have to toy with him first, to prove their domination by humiliating him.
This is what lies behind the crime of rape, the need to dominate and humiliate, and is why I’m interested in where and under what situations Michael is having his repeated experiences.
» Posted By CQ On May 3, 2013 @ 3:07 pm
I lived in Berkeley and San Francisco in the 1970s (when Harvey Milk was first elected, the pre-AIDS era of bathhouses and other such dens of iniquity) and have worked in the entertainment industry my entire career. I’ve worked in offices in West Hollywood on-and-off since 1977, and as recently as 6 months ago, and so I’ve frequented the restaurants, bars and nightclubs there. I know dozens of dozens of gay men and women, and have countless hundreds of colleagues who died of AIDS in the 1980s and 1990s, and even this year.
To be honest, the only thing I ever experienced that comes close to what you report are the two times in my entire life I was grabbed by someone, one was a Roman Catholic priest (1976, inside a rectory) and the other was an Orthodox monk (1990, at a church). In neither instance did I need to resort to violence to bring those tortured souls to their senses.
I’m the most average person you’ve ever met, and your experience is so foreign to mine that I find myself wondering “Where does this guy live? Where on earth are gay men so aggressive?”
» Posted By CQ On May 2, 2013 @ 11:17 am
His only “crime” was not being able to win over gay activists…
Oddly, Metropolitan Jonah failed to “win over” anti-gay activists. Ask Deacon Brian Patrick how satisfied he is with the Metropolitan’s leadership on that issue…
There are Bishops left and Bishops right and Bishops in-between. IF you assume that his resignation was about the politics of homosexuality, pro- or con-, then you’ve got to explain unanimity from disparate political interests.
IF, on the other hand, you assume that the Synod was acting unanimously because they found their collective expectations dashed on one too many times, then you’ll have to abandon your preoccupation with all things “gay” and address what it was about Metropolitan Jonah’s management style that resulted in lack of confidence on the part of the entire OCA Synod.
(Here’s a hint from my experience: No-one likes to be surprised. Not management, shareholders, employees, or customers. No-one likes to find that what they thought was true is not true or what they expected to occur is not occurring, or vice-versa.)
Leadership is an interesting trait. It requires a person to be far more sure of himself than those around him are sure of themselves, it requires that individual to be capable of convincing those around him that he is worthy of their trust even as his directives contradict their own impulses. Leadership is the ability to holler “Follow me!” and actually be followed, even as one reverses course. And leadership requires the internal fortitude to ignore sniping and naysayers and resignation demanders, and the clarity of one’s goal to press onward without regard to them.
Whatever you think of his presidency, George W. Bush exhibited leadership. He managed to get Republicans and Democrats alike to implement his vision for his nation. From tax cuts to wars, including tax cuts during wars, he always managed to get a majority to follow him…even after Katrina and Iraq…even including the TARP. Say whatever you will about where George W. Bush led this nation, that man was a leader!
Metropolitan Jonah has many fine attributes, but leadership is not one of them. I love the man, I love his heart, I love the clarity of his teaching and the warmth of his compassion for those who fall short of his teaching. I love who he is as a human being, a priest, a monk, a teacher. I love him, but he is not a leader. He inspired a disheartened and divided people with one speech, but was ill-prepared to follow that speech with the leadership that was required. And when he resigned (under pressure, to be sure, but not insurmountable pressure to a leader) he proved the point.
One can contend that Metropolitan Jonah was maligned and treated badly, but what one cannot contend is that the Metropolitan was in any way, shape or form, a leader. We thrilled to his election because it was bold and inspiring, but the realists among us knew we were betting that he’d grow into the job. He proved incapable of that growth; the error is ours.
» Posted By CQ On April 18, 2013 @ 10:33 pm
Back To Stats Page
Why employ the violent image “rammed down our throat” to describe an event that is non-violent?
The language we use has a real effect on how we percieve the world, the routine use of such violent imagry about things we dislike causes us to percieve ourselves as being helpless when, in fact, we are merely powerless. Viewing ourselves as helpless leads us to think of ourselves as victims and to react angrily and passionately. Viewing ourselves as relatively powerless leads us to dispassionately change the things we can change, and to accept the things we cannot.
The Spirit of Peace is not the souce of violent imagry and feelings of helplessness and reactive emotionality.
» Posted By CQ On April 25, 2013 @ 10:42 am