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American Civil War Museum and Historic Tredegar

Nestled on the bank of the James River in Richmond, Virginia, near the American Civil War Museum, the Tredegar Iron Works began operating in 1837. The name Tredegar honored engineers Rhys Davies and his crew who were recruited from the Tredegar Mills in Wales. The proximity to railroads and canal boats made this location ideal.

On this very hot and lazy Saturday afternoon, with temperatures upwards of 100 degrees Fahrenheit, locals were sunbathing on the beach nearby.

By Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh - Friday, July 28, 2017 - Full Story

Ghost in the Shell a surprisingly watchable sci-fi Blu-ray disc

It may have started life as a Japanese comic book, but Paramount’s Ghost in the Shell is a compelling and eye-dazzling adventure that’s much better than I had expected going in.

The movie, debuting on 4K and conventional Blu-ray (our sample was the Blu-ray, darn it, which comes with a DVD and digital code in the package as well - and a 3D version is available, too) hearkens more than a little to Blade Runner, in its look and overall storyline, but more in an "inspired by" or "homage" manner than being a complete rip-off.  It made me curious to see how the Blade Runner sequel will turn out when it debuts later this year.

Speaking of a not-too-distant future, Ghost in the Shell is set in just such an environment. Look at the streets, with their obtrusive (but perfectly logical given the way our society is going) holographic ads all over the place - and the abundance of neon and other signage, and it looks exactly like a 21st century take on the 21st century envisioned by Ridley Scott and his collaborators back in the 1982 Blade Runner (though I don’t remember seeing flying cars in "Ghost"). There’s less rain in this vision of the future, it seems, but that’s okay because perhaps it means the seas didn’t really rise after the United States withdrew from the Paris Climate accord.


The Revolution of Vatican II was Misinterpreted?

It is often voiced by conservatives disheartened by the changes in the Catholic Church that Vatican II was a good council, but that it was misinterpreted. If these good people were better informed as to what took place at the Council, they would never say any such thing. Though Vatican II started with the best resolves, it was hijacked in the opening session by rebel bishops because the pope had planned the Council without their advice and against their designs.

We gather that Cardinal Tisserant, the key draftsman of the 1962 Moscow-Vatican Treaty who presided at the opening session, was part of this plot to usurp the Vatican Council. According to Jean Guitton, the famous French academic, Tisserant had showed him a painting of himself and six others, and told him, “This picture is historic, or rather, symbolic. It shows the meeting we had before the opening of the Council when we decided to block the first session by refusing to accept the tyrannical rules laid down by John XXIII.” (Vatican II in the Dock, 2003)

By David Martin - Tuesday, July 25, 2017 - Full Story

Good mood food: A fresh start

On Sunday at the British Open golf tournament, Jordan Spieth had one of the worst front nine of golf ever by someone leading the tournament. He eventually lost his two-stroke lead to Matt Kuchar, and many golf observers had to concede that Jordan didn’t have it that day, and would probably lose the tournament.

Hole number 13 was an even bigger disaster for Spieth, and even he expected to shoot a double bogey or worse. He managed to shoot an unlikely bogey.

By Herman Cain - Monday, July 24, 2017 - Full Story

Can One Be Good Without God?

Atheists have always resented Christians binding goodness to God although we insist that there is a necessary connection. In fact, atheists adamantly insist that they are as decent, kind, good, and altruistic as Christians are. I don’t believe that for a minute. Some atheists may be fairly good people, but generally, one cannot be good without God!

While anyone may choose to be kind, decent, and gracious, there is no compelling reason for him to choose to do so if there is no God. With God, there is obligation. If there is no God then how one treats others is inconsequential. His mistreatment of the innocent and weak will not be faced in eternity since there is no eternity–according to their perverted view.

But there is a God and eternity is in the future of every person on earth.

By Dr. Don Boys - Sunday, July 23, 2017 - Full Story

A bigger Kong hits the smaller screen

The good news is that Kong: Skull Island isn’t as bad as I had feared it would be. The bad news is that it isn’t as good as it could have been. However you slice it, however, it’s an excellent example of how good home video can look and sound in 1080p HD.

Warner Brothers’ latest take on the giant ape theme comes courtesy of some of the folks who made the last Godzilla remake, so if nothing else it shows they have a history of remaking "classics" for better or worse. Yet this Kong has very little to do with the "Kings Kong" that preceded it, which was one of the things that had me more than a tad scared going into this review (I thought they’d be painting a moustache onto the Mona Lisa).

I love King Kong. I have the 1933 original and Peter Jackson’s exquisite remake/homage in my Blu-ray library (both are part of my "desert island disc" collection), and I’m possibly one of the few people who didn’t hate most of the 1970’s version with Jeff Bridges.

The story of King Kong is basically an action-packed thriller leavened liberally with the romance between the big ape (Kong, not Jack Driscoll) and Ann Darrow (Faye Wray and Naomi Watts, respectively) - a Beauty and the Beast-type of classic story. And while Kong was big and ferocious, he wasn’t a villain;  he was just a big guy defending his turf, then ripped from his home and plunked down where he didn’t belong -  kind of like the Ymir in Ray Harryhausen’s 20 Million Miles to Earth.


Notorious Abortionist to Speak at Catholic Church in Italy

Abortionist Emma Bonino is proud of the 6,000,000 babies she is directly or indirectly responsible for killing since 1968, and remains an avid abortionist to this day. This is not to mention her continued rant as a political activist to promote divorce, homosexuality, transgenderism, gay-marriage, the abolition of the armed forces, the disbanding of NATO, the liberalization of porn laws, mandatory sex education, and the Communist insurgence of the west under the guise of immigration. No repentance whatsoever.

Yet, Pope Francis in 2016 told an interviewer for the Corriere della Sera that Bonino was “among the great ones of Italy,” and defended her on the grounds that she “thinks very differently from us.” He recommended “patience,” saying, “You have to look at people, what they do.”

By David Martin - Friday, July 21, 2017 - Full Story

Benedict XVI: The Barque of Peter is Sinking

The Church continues to lament the passing of Cardinal Meisner of Cologne, who was an outspoken opponent of Amoris Laetita which breaks with tradition by allowing divorced and civilly remarried people to receive Communion. Surprisingly, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI sent a letter of tribute to be read at Meisner’s funeral on July 15. In the letter he says:

“What particularly impressed me from my last conversations with the now passed Cardinal was the relaxed cheerfulness, the inner joy and the confidence at which he had arrived. We know that this passionate shepherd and pastor found it difficult to leave his post, especially at a time in which the Church stands in particularly pressing need of convincing shepherds who can resist the dictatorship of the spirit of the age and who live and think the faith with determination. However, what moved me all the more was that, in this last period of his life, he learned to let go and to live out of a deep conviction that the Lord does not abandon His Church, even if the boat has taken on so much water as to be on the verge of capsizing.”

By David Martin - Wednesday, July 19, 2017 - Full Story

Crime Never Pays

No doubt American humorist Mark Twain could not resist stealing a few watermelons because as he once said, “The true Southern watermelon is a boon apart, not to be mentioned with commoner things. It is king by the grace of God over all the fruits of the earth. When one has tasted it, he knows what angels eat. It was not a Southern watermelon that Eve took. We know it because she repented.” 

I couldn’t agree more. Nothing tastes better than sweet, juicy watermelon. It’s good store bought, better home grown, best stolen.

“You won’t believe the watermelon patch we found hidden in a bend of Deer Creek,” my pal Clyde said one Saturday morning. “Let’s rob it tonight.”

By Jimmy Reed - Wednesday, July 19, 2017 - Full Story

K-12: Sight-Words are Hoax Words

Hundreds of websites broadcast the same misguided message: children must memorize Sight-Words.

This message is false. Probably the most aggressive falsehood is that such memorization is easy to do.

One popular site proclaims this malarkey: “Because many Sight-Words are phonetically irregular, tend to be abstract, have limited visual correspondence, or even easily understood definitions, students must memorize them to read quickly and fluently.”

By Bruce Deitrick Price - Sunday, July 16, 2017 - Full Story

VIDEO: Tebow hits walk-off home run in Florida State League

I’ve said all along that if Tim Tebow is going to succeed in baseball, it’s going to be because God anointed him to do it, for God’s purposes. A lot of people thought Tebow was so bad that he would flame out in the low minors.

He is hitting .327 in 10 games at the Advanced Class A level, and he shows signs that he’s capable of big things, and never more so than last night when his St. Lucie Mets played a home game against the Daytona Tortugas. We’ll take you to the bottom of the ninth inning, with the Mets trailing 4-3 and Tebow at the plate:

By Dan Calabrese - Friday, July 14, 2017 - Full Story

The Paper Towel Pilot

My Piper Cub airplane was due for an airworthiness inspection at a large airport, but since the little airplane had no radio equipment, I called the control tower and requested permission to fly in from a nearby crop duster’s strip.

The controller assigned an arrival time and said that he would blink a green light if I was clear to land. What should have been a routine procedure turned out to be one of the most bizarre incidents in my flying career.

Since the day was warm, I locked the airplane’s doors in the open position and strapped myself into the rear seat. Directly behind my head in the cargo area, I had stuffed three large bundles of paper towels, the kind that overlap so that when one is pulled from a dispenser, the next one is available.

By Jimmy Reed - Monday, July 10, 2017 - Full Story

Mennonite Church Passes Anti-Israel Resolution

ORLANDO, FL—The Mennonite Church USA voted yesterday to sell off its holdings in companies that profit from what the church described as the “Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.” The decision was made in Orlando at a national Mennonite convention, which represented 75,000 church members.

While the resolution condemns anti-Semitism, encourages stronger ties between church members and Jews, and endorses a review of how Mennonites responded to the Holocaust, it also directs managers of the 3 billion dollar Everence church fund to screen holdings to avoid any economic support for “Israeli policies in the occupied territories.”

By Liberty Counsel - Friday, July 7, 2017 - Full Story

Wimbledon Tennis: Feminists Preach Equality While Enjoying Inequality

Could you imagine lightweight boxers complaining they don’t get the money and exposure of the heavyweights, calling the different treatment “staturism”?

This is essentially the situation at the Wimbledon tennis championships this week, with, for example, Hannah Wilks at the Guardian writing, “A new analysis of matches scheduled on Centre and No 1 courts shows that Wimbledon organisers routinely favour male tennis players over their female peers.” She calls this “sexism” and “sex discrimination.”

Actually, it’s called marketing.

By Selwyn Duke - Wednesday, July 5, 2017 - Full Story

Jewelry discovered in Crusader-era kitchen in Israel

If you ever wondered who did most of the cooking in medieval Israel, a Crusader fortress in the city of Modi’in will put those doubts to rest: it was the women.

While excavating an archaeological site called Givat Tittora, diggers uncovered a treasure of coins, rings, bracelets and cosmetic tools among the cooking pots, jars, serving dishes and ancient clay ovens.

Most of the jewelry was found by a volunteer archaeologist, Mati Yohananoff, a regular participant in the Givat Tittora excavation. “These finds indicate the kind of activity traditionally associated with women’s domestic work,” he said.

“It seems that the cooks of the time were not sufficiently careful with the jewelry they wore while cooking and baking,” explained Avraham Tendler, excavation director for the Israel Antiquities Authority.—More…

By ISRAEL21c - Wednesday, July 5, 2017 - Full Story

John McEnroe is Right: Serena Williams Couldn’t Beat Eggs on Men’s Tour

It’s a sad time when simple truths cause serious trouble. But that time is now, and a good example is how former number-one tennis player John McEnroe is being excoriated for stating that Serena Williams, widely regarded as history’s best women’s player, would be “like number 700 in the world” on the men’s tour. The story is also further proof of how the media are infested with arrogant, ignorant fake-news fetishists.

I do place a premium on honesty, however, and thus should confess my title’s inaccuracy. McEnroe is wrong.

I don’t think Williams would crack the top 1000 men.

By Selwyn Duke - Friday, June 30, 2017 - Full Story

God Bless You, Montague

As always, I started walking when the sun first lightened the horizon. This daily routine provides time to pray and to recite poetry.

A favorite quotation from Lorraine Hansberry’s play, “A Raisin In The Sun,” came to mind.

“Child, when do you think is the time to love somebody the most? When he’s done good and made things easy for everybody? That ain’t the time at all. It’s when he’s at his lowest and can’t believe in himself because the world has whipped him so! When you start measuring somebody, measure him right … make sure you’ve taken into account … the hills and valleys he’s come through … to get to wherever he is.”

By Jimmy Reed - Thursday, June 29, 2017 - Full Story

Why would Christians want to reach out to an Islam that despises them?

Pastor Mike SpauldingThe current firestorm related to James White’s decision to facilitate an interfaith dialogue with Imam Yasir Qahdi is puzzling in the least and has become a stumbling block for many who do not understand how White cannot understand that he is “dancing with the devil” as the saying goes. (Editor’s note: James Simpson wrote on this topic yesterday here at Bombthrowers. The article is “When evangelicals become useful idiots for Islamism.”)

Mr. White’s response to those critical of his decision has been the polar opposite of remorse and he has in fact dug his heels in and maintained that his actions were right and consistent with what Christians should be doing. Is that true? What bridges can be built to people who teach that Christians who do not submit or convert to Islam should be murdered? What madness is this that has gripped Christians today such that they believe the lie that building bridges to nowhere constitutes evangelism? I won’t rehash all of White’s actions related to this in detail. You can read about that here.

By BombThrowers -- Dr. Mike Spaulding- Thursday, June 29, 2017 - Full Story

Universal Day of the Romanian Blouse

On a sunny and breezy June 24, 2017, a group of over 100 Romanians from states and suburbs surrounding Washington, D.C., have gathered in front of the State Capitol’s reflecting pool to pose for a group picture in celebration of the Universal Day of the Romanian Blouse called “ie,” a hand-woven and hand-sewn artisanal blouse. Women from the three regions of Romania, Transylvania, Moldova, and Wallachia, have sewn these intricate works of art for centuries.

The event was organized by Bogdan Banu and the group photo, taken by Ioana Buliga, was posted on La Blouse Roumaine, the website created to celebrate the rich tradition of folkloric designs;  its name was inspired by the Henri Matisse painting, “La Blouse Roumaine.”

By Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh - Tuesday, June 27, 2017 - Full Story

The Horticultural Alice

When Lewis Carroll penned Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in 1865, followed six years later with Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There he must never have thought that over 150 years later they would never have been out of print. As most know, ‘Lewis Carroll’ was the pen name of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, a mathematician and lecturer at Christ College, Oxford.

Translated into at least 174 languages, they have been enjoyed by both Queen Victoria and Oscar Wilde. Presented on the stage, film and television, the two stories are usually blended together. As early as 1886 a musical play was presented in London’s West End. A British silent film followed in 1903, a Broadway play in 1915, a television adaptation in 1937. In evitable there has been a Disney animation, as well as ballets, operas and even, in 1976, a porn-musical.

By Wes Porter - Saturday, June 24, 2017 - Full Story