Saturday, December 17, 2011

Bishop George Packard leads Occupy Wall Street into Trinity Church's empty lot - Duarte Square 6th Ave and Canal St. NYC

Trinity Church Wall Street, the second richest church in Christendom outside of St. Peter's in Rome, has the cooperation of the establishment to keep protesters off a tiny spec, portion of its tens of billions of dollars Manhattan Real Estate Portfolio. Duarte Square (triangle) two blocks from the entrance to the Holland Tunnel on the southern edge of Greenwich Village.

There is a battle brewing within the Episcopal Church between the progressives and the conservatives over whether to help the poor or to just sweep the rabble out with the morning trash.  A true microcosm of America today.  The 1% who own the planet and the 99% of the rest of us. 


Sunday, December 4, 2011

banking institutions...more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. - T. Jefferson

I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around [the banks] will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered. The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs. --- Thomas Jefferson


Friday, November 25, 2011

Epistle From Oz - Fr. Peter Kennedy - SMX - St. Mary's In Exile Brisbane


2011 Melbourne series Melbourne Town Hall - November 15, 2011

For more than two millennia, the Catholic Church has been the author and repository of some of the highest ideals of humanity. Yet, as humanity is flawed, so is the Church. Few would deny that the Catholic Church has dark chapters in its history. However, do these darker moments unfairly obscure the light – perhaps because so much is expected of an institution that claims to bridge the sacred and secular? Or is the Catholic Church simply the most ancient of wolves in sheep’s clothing?

Father Peter Kennedy

In 2009 the ABC Australian Story produced a feature film entitled “Holier Than Thou” which documented our forced removal from St Mary’s Church in South Brisbane into Exile.

At the end of the filming of our story at Natural Bridge in Qld I went down with the production team for a coffee at the roadside cafĂ© on the road between Nerang in Qld and Murwillumbah in NSW. As we sat down on the veranda a classic Aussie bloke dressed in stubbies and thongs shot a glance in my direction and pointed me out to his wife. Shortly after they got up to leave and he put his hands on his hips, looked down to me and said “Stick it up ‘em mate”. A little surprised, I half stood up and said “what’s your name mate” and he said “it doesn’t matter what my name is mate, just stick it up ‘em”.

Only later did I realise how pivotal that encounter was for me – a light bulb moment, a road to Damascus moment, except it was on the road to Murwillumbah.

The insight that arose was that the ordinary man and woman, the bulk of the church’s membership, the battlers, the mums and dads, who built the churches, hospitals, schools - who were loyal all their lives to the church to its bishops, priests religions and its rules and regulations, its doctrines and its dogmas - frankly - had had enough - they were voiceless in a church ruled by an elite, clerical caste who demanded and expected that the “laity” that derogative term, should just pray, pay and obey. They have had it up to here and they’ve left in their hundreds of thousands, never to come back -“stick it up ‘em mate”!

My argument is simple: – that the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church that arrogantly refuses to allow its membership, its most loyal supporters, a voice in its governance cannot be a force for good in today’s world where increasingly democracy and human rights is the primal cry of people who know the pain and suffering and disempowerment of dictatorships – especially women.
The Roman Catholic Church is such a totalitarian regime e.g. to become a bishop, male of course, a priest has to promise obedience of mind and will, to one man the bishop of Rome, the Pope, in whom all authority resides.

To argue that Jesus established the church in this way and that the church cannot be more democratic, involving the people in its governance, is based on a fiction, a lie – known as apostolic succession,
Stay with me… the bishops claim to be the successors of the twelve apostles with the bishop of Rome claiming to be the successor of the apostle Peter, who was no.1 in Team Jesus. They argue they have that same authority to rule over the church today. Please note it is an authority of power – it ought to be an authority of love.

The Pope as No.1, claims to be – wait for it – the Vicar of Christ- well, I don’t know about you, but from my reading of the gospels I think Jesus would be far more at home with the Vicar of Dibley!

The facts are very different. In the first 3 centuries of Christianity in the various communities of faith that dotted the Mediterranean there was no one form of liturgy, no one form of governance, no one theology. Instead you had communities of equals where both women and men exercised the various gifts given to them by the Spirit. e.g. The gift of leadership, the gift of healing, the gift of prophecy, the gift of preaching etc.

In the 4th Century of the C..E the Pagan Emperor Constantine used the fledging literalist community in Rome to unify his empire. In order to bolster their claims to authority, the church leaders invented the fiction of Apostolic Succession which is still the basis of governance in the Roman Catholic Church today.

As Harvey Cox, Emeritus Professor at Harvard writes in his book “The Future of Faith” – “as the empire became notionally Christian, the church that had been from its beginning fiercely anti – imperial became its fawning imitators blurring the essence of Christianity almost beyond recognition.

The paradox is that when the Roman Empire collapsed, up bobbed a pseudo-religious empire – the Roman Catholic Church. As the philosopher Thomas Hobbes in the 17th Century wrote – “the Church, the papacy became nothing other than the ghost of the deceased Roman Empire, sitting on the grave thereof

Let me now speak from my own experience and that of our community, now in exile in our struggle with such absolute, ruthless and callous authority.

On that fateful day when I saw the Archbishop in 2008 as I was leaving his office, I turned towards him and with some compassion said “You know John, you are going to cop a fair bit of flak from our community”.

He paused and said “This is the Roman Catholic Church. You put me in a corner and I’ll come out fighting”.

People began writing to him respectfully and as intelligent people of faith. He wrote to me saying “if you think that what they’re saying is going to change my mind, let me tell you, it will do the very opposite.” He added “I obey the Pope, you should obey me, and they should obey you”

I tell you this – not to denigrate the Archbishop but to indicate to you the mindset of total obedience of the bishops of the church to absolute Roman Papal authority.

Such an undemocratic church cannot be a force for good in today’s world. Until the Church falls unto the hands of the people it cannot be a significant player in today’s world – a world that demands and expects that the voice of the people be heard. -- Peter Kennedy


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Men at Work - Vegemite

Vegemite is made from substances left over from the brewing process. It contains yeast extract, salt, potassium chloride, malt extract, caramel color, nicotinamide, thiamine, hydrochloride, riboflavin, sulfur dioxide and natural flavor.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Oscar Wilde - 1854/1900 - Esperanza


Besieged personalities.
Favored essences.
Light transparent not.

Witness to the light and splendor was she,
Before fame that she bore,
Became shame that she wore,
Mixed with Truth,
Bitter harmony.

Wise man make a vision,
Out of darkness's spite.
Wise man make provision,
Lest heaven pierce gloom's night,
And like some faded Greek tale,
Wear a mask that fits all too easily.

There comes a point when all the art
Is nothing more than anger.

To this less than all too mortal world
A final scene is written.

And Esperanza speaks.
No. Esperanza weeps.
For the sorrow that he brought.
For the morrow that he wrought.
False idols to did he pray?
Gone now. Shattered clay.

(It is said that on the night of his mother's death; Oscar Wilde had a vision of her in his jail cell. I take poetic license with her pen name Speranza and add an E. The Spanish word esperanza translates as expectancy and or hope.)

Article Source: New York 1978

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Boundaries of Harrowgate, Philly – Kenzo vs. Gatee

This all got started over the unique Philly and or Kenzo rocket science about where Kensington ends and Harrowgate begins kinda bar talk. I grew up on that end of that northeast Philly turf. The other end of turf questions, rocket science, regarding the boundaries of Fishtown and Kensington – I am not going to touch here.

With the Act of Consolidation of 1854, all districts, townships and boroughs in Philadelphia County were brought under the one authority of Philadelphia city. This was done to improve infrastructure developments and also to establish some law and order outside the then downtown limits of Philadelphia city.

In other words if you killed somebody in center city in a bar fight or street knife fight, you hauled ass over the border into the bad lands, the Northern Liberties, where I think the traditional Fishtown and or Kensington begin on a map, to a place that literally had no police force, where you might be safe for some time depending on how important the victim was – you know how that goes etc.

The so called anti-Catholic riots in 1844 that burned down half of Kensington back then happened according to Wikipedia because the only cop in Kensington was the entire police force with the title of Sheriff. The neighboring Philly city militia was reluctant to respond to that Kensington Sheriff's pleas for help because the city militia got stiffed in the past and was not paid for services rendered previously. Who can ya trust?

As it turns out, Harrowgate was not one of those political entities that were absorbed into the greater Philadelphia in 1854. It is or was just a state of mind I guess. There was a health spa, healing well water in the 1780s and 1790s that was connected to a hotel lasting until the 1840s near the present Harrowgate Park at the Tioga El stop.

The hotel had a reputation of sorts from reading some historic research. Apparently actors and entertainers were not allowed to register at any respectable hotel in old Philly, so prim, proper and Quaker. The actors had to hike it or ride it up to Harrowgate if they wanted a hotel room.

Whatever. Must have been an interesting place at one time in terms of the local party scene.

Two things have inspired me to write this about Harrowgate and its possible boundaries.

One is that I see real estate maps of “Harrowgate” that don’t cut the mustard.

Two, a famous Harrowgate landmark, the Cedar Gove mansion moved to Fairmount Park in the 1920s, is being listed by some writers as having been in Frankford. Frankford is not Harrowgate and vice versa.

While we are on the subject, let me put Cedar Grove on the Harrowgate map since all tour guides and written guides don’t have a clue where it once was located in either Harrowgate or Frankford.

It was on a map just off the western extension of E Sedgley Ave. past the intersection of E. Sedgley Ave. and “K” Street. In present day terms, its original location is now in the middle of a parking lot of what appears on Google satellite to be a warehouse off Eire Avenue.

That at least puts one object in the picture as being in Harrowgate besides Harrowgate Park.

I think the minimum boundaries or the heart of Harrowgate might be the parish boundaries of Saint Joan of Arc Parish at Atlantic St. and Frandford Ave. which has always listed itself as St. Joan of Arc Harrowgate since its founding around 1919.

In fact on old maps, Atlantic Street at Frankford Ave. was the start of a long gone road, “Harrowgate Lane”, that went straight to Cedar Grove on those old maps.

The Parish boundaries are Clockwise:

Aramingo to Venango to Tulip to Allegheny to Emerald to E.Westmoreland to Jasper to Ontario to “J” to Erie/Torresdale to Frankford Creek

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Miss Diana (of the staircase)

Miss Diana (of the staircase) 

Dear Liberty, Liberty, Liberty dear,

It has been many a year
Since last our paths were parted.
In case you forget, I was the spec
That topped a building forgotten.
Madison Garden on the Square,
I was the weathervane fair
Do you remember?
If not I must object.
Because our acquaintance was set
by what was his name, Henry O. or
Was it O. Henry?
He was a clever gent
To recognize the bond between
Two metal maidens
As we stood and adorned
Gotham of old.
I, by chance, the other day
Met a visitor,
Who had a post card
Of you guarding still
The gates to the Republic.
I am sorry I forgot you,
And apparently you me,
Over these many decades.
It is true they tore down the Garden
And my fate was likely to follow
In similar manner.
The island Manhattan has
Different standards for structures
Than the island on which you dwell.
My fate, the fate of fame
Was lost on a scrap heap
Till one day a friend did buy
For the value of scrap, me
For thirty and eight dollars.
Deflated was my ego, but still,
Twas better than being
Melted down to solder.
I dread to think
What value your copper sheath
Would bring on the scales of barter.
We lofty few must preserve
Our sight from mortal schemes
Not worthy of our station in life.
My journey from Gotham of old
Has landed me in a splendid temple
Atop Fairmount Hill
On the Champs Benjamin Franklin
In the city of brotherly love.
It is a marvelous change
From the cold work of weathervane.
I serve no function
Except to grace a grand hall
And stone staircase.
I have joined your ranks Liberty.
I am art or so they say.
Isn't it great to retire so late.
And find a home so Greek
As this bejeweled museum?
Every decade or so
There is a spat
Between some Gotham bureaucrat
And the keepers of my present home.
They say my home is Gotham.
Though in truth it is Olympus.
Home is truly where the heart is.
Here Corinthian and Ionic,
Not purely mixed,
Houses my metal frame.
Out the window
Across the way
I have found a new friend.
His name is William, William Penn.
He is made of bronze.
No sterner stuff
Are men made of these days.
He is shorter than you in fact
But higher than you he dwells.
No stone tower here is taller than he
As he stares in disbelief
Toward dear Gotham Town,
On a building French
That you would adore.
He is refined but a little bit dull.
His upper lip is stiff.
I miss your French ways
Seen through the haze
Of fine ocean mists past.
We must get together soon,
We metal folk,
For a grand old bash so bold.
Now I must finish.
The doors are about to admit
The lovers of art.
I know my part,
Same as you.
Please write. See you
How is O. Henry?

Miss Diana.             © 1978

There was a conversation started to or listened to by O.Henry in his short story The Lady Higher Up.

The conversation is between two famous statues in 1904 New York City. The two, the statues, of Liberty and Saint-Gaudens Diana converse on their own Olympic plane. This poem is an attempt to rekindle the conversation started by O.Henry and was written some thirty odd years ago.


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

North Catholic - Aerial Photo - Philly 1939

Northeast Catholic School for Boys - Phila. 1926-2010 (left center)

Old Harbison dairy - (center)

Great Old Aerial Pic of North Catholic - Frankford Gazette

Harbison Dairy, Philadelphia


Some interesting photos in the attached blog below:

Harbison's Dairies aerial shot

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Google Patents - Frank's Beverages Philly

I recently ran into this photo looking for nostalgic images of the defunct Frank’s beverage company out of Philly from my youth, centuries ago.

The above was a very distinctive shaped bottle for the 10 or 12 ounce bottles.

Seeing the patent number I wanted to see if I could find it. And then I realized that there was now a Google Patents search page. Things have certainly improved a lot from when I was trying to search out a 1892 patent in a University library in Arizona over a decade ago.

And lo and behold the patent for the old Frank’s bottle.

Frank's - It's The Best

The world is indeed becoming smaller via the Internet.


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Long live Diversity Jesu! Rasta Jesu – Bob Marley

In honor of the black messiah, Bob Marley 1945-1981, dead thirty years ago this week, of the Rasta movement, from the poorest of the poorest slums in Jamaica, and an assortment of Reggae, Hip Hop, Rap (clean) and underbelly HUMAN energy that will perhaps one day transform this planet to the global Jerusalem!

With no apologies to my White Bread cousins, brothers and sisters in Philly, NY, Chi-Town, LA, Tucson, etc. the world, planet Earth, the Universe etc.

Matisyahu – One Day ( Matisyahiu = Matthew of Maccabees’ revolt fame) – Hasidic Reggae

Honorary Reggae “god” Bob Marley in Hotel California

(click on above screen to enlarge image)

And Hip Art artist Lupe Fiasco - The Show Goes On

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Change you can believe in - 2012

(this is in no way an endorsement or non-endorsement of any political candidate)