The Boston Globe Style Book

With all the reading of news sites I have to do to prepare the «Ad Rem» — and given our own publishing apostolate — I decided to invest in a Boston Globe style book. This an important tool used by Globe writers and editors to make sure that their stories are “on the same page” (so to speak) when it comes to things like capitalization and abbreviation standards, English usage, and how to spin a story in favor of their own antichrist bias. Very practical. Reading it has been quite an education.

I thought I would share some excerpts:

Antisemitismn. (1) Criticism of the state of Israel. (2) Religiously-motived disagreement with one or more of the tenets of Judaism.

Cultn. Organized fanatics (q.v.) working for a common end.

Fanaticn. Anyone with convictions, esp., those corresponding to what was once the common faith and polity of Christendom.

Feeneyiten. Someone who believes there is no salvation outside the Church.

Haten. A strong emotion expressed in any utterance or act which opposes other people or their convictions. Pending legislation will eradicate it, with the help of the legal staff of the Southern Poverty Law Center and similar organizations.

Intolerancen. The rejection of others’ beliefs or acts as being wrong or evil. Enlightened people studiously avoid this, unless, of course, the wrong or evil rejected is that of intolerant people.

Lunatic Fringe (sometimes, just “fringe”) — n. A movement comprised of two or more fanatics (q.v.). They are often guilty of hate (q.v.).

Religious Rightn. Neocon Protestants.

Tolerancen. (1) The placid allowance of what is wrong or evil. (2) The practice of according full legal protection from criticism in thought or speech to any and all ideas or activities once naively censured as “wrong.” (3) The antithesis of hate (q.v.).

Traditionalist (or “Catholic Traditionalist”) — n. (1) A hateful (q.v.) antisemitic (q.v.) fanatic (q.v.) belonging to the lunatic fringe (q.v.) of the Catholic Church, or, often a cult (q.v.); (2) A Roman Catholic who adheres to pre-Vatican II liturgical rites and beliefs.

You may find this helpful in reading stories in the Globe and other major media outlets.

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Alright, it was a joke, but I hope it got you thinking! There do exist such style books and we have a couple of them. Far from engaging in shameless humor, I hoped to make the spoof a “teachable moment” so that readers will learn to recognize buzz words, pregnant phrases, loaded language, and all the other linguistic manipulations that newspapers use to bias their readers to their liberal point of view.

What gave me the idea to do this was a conversation I had with a seasoned journalist who used to write for the English-language Paris newspaper owned by the New York Times. He had to use the Times style book which demanded two distinct sets of nomenclature for coverage of Arab-Israeli armed hostilities. The reader has probably guessed that the style book’s bias was not in favor of the Arabs.

For the humorless who may object to my prank, I close with a few utterances of men (and one woman) I know to be wise. They are defending humor and gaiety. If we can’t have a laugh at the expense of the Boston Globe, we are truly lost.

“Since life includes rest as well as activity, and in this is included leisure and amusement, there seems here also to be a kind of intercourse which is tasteful….it is the mark of a tactful man to say and listen to such things as befit a good and well-bred man; for there are some things that it befits such a man to say and to hear by way of jest…” — Aristotle (Nicomachean Ethics Book IV, sec. 8)

“May God protect me from gloomy saints” — St. Teresa of Avila

On Unholy Gloom

When Satan fails to make us bad,
He is most content to keep us sad,
For a heavy heart cannot contain,
Buoyant thought from the high domain,
And must perforce gravitate,
To matters of a lower state.

— Br. Francis, M.I.C.M. (from Divine Alchemy)


In the News: Mounting Opposition to Traditional Mass

There are conflicting reports regarding the anticipated motu proprio on the traditional Latin Mass. This document, expected to loosen the fictitious legal restrictions on the classical Roman Rite, is not imminent, according to Jean-Pierre Cardinal Ricard, the Archbishop of Bordeaux and a member of the Ecclesia Dei Commission (Decision on Latin Mass not imminent, French cardinal says). Clearly, a battle has been brewing.

The Cardinal referred to the document as “a suggestion by Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos” (emphasis mine).

According to Catholic World News:

Cardinal Ricard reported that he had spoken with Pope Benedict about the proposed document, and the Pope had assured him that there was still time for consultation about any policy announcement. The French prelate had met with Pope Benedict at the Vatican on October 26.

The French cardinal’s remarks were at odds with reports that have circulated freely in Rome during past weeks, suggesting that Pope Benedict is prepared to release the document broadening access to the traditional Mass. Some informed Vatican-watchers continue to insist that the document’s release is imminent.

In his most complete article yet on the subject, French clerical rebellion grows, but Pope intent on moving forward for traditionalists, Wanderer writer Brian Mershon puts these developments in their broader context. The battle, as we said before, is ultimately a theological one (a point the liberals are also making loud and clear). Mr. Mershon cites an interview with Fr. Guillaume de Tanoüarn, one of the founding members of the traditionalist Institute of the Good Shepherd in Bordeaux, France, the little group of priests that has become the center of the whole controversy. The group wishes to “contribute to an analysis of the Second Vatican Council documents in light of Tradition.”

Is it any wonder they have become controversial? That’s a dangerous thing!

From Mr. Merson’s article:

“We want to contribute as much as we are able to the theological work and aid in renewing Catholic intelligence,” Fr. de Tanoüarn said. “The time has come to definitively quit religious ideologies that were imposed in the 1960s,” he said.

“Our age is one of uncertainty and fear, and we want to respond to this by proposing the traditional Roman Catholic forms of liturgy and theology,” said Fr. de Tanoüarn. “Today, cultural challenges won’t be met unless Catholics stop considering Vatican II as ‘the new tables of the law’ and enthusiastically rediscover the richness of the great Roman Catholic Tradition.”

While these manly Catholic words are resonating in our minds, this is a good time to remind ourselves that it was the revolution in dogmatic theology that led to the revolution in the liturgy. Father Feeney, ever the poet, said it best in his Reflections on a Flea:

And by the way,
Speaking of how to pray,
Dogmas come first, not liturgies.
(The Leonard Feeney Omnibus, p.386)

This is not to downplay liturgy in the least. It is certainly not to downplay our principled adherence to the traditional rites of the Roman Church. Rather, the poem puts the whole matter in its larger context. The lex credendi (law of believing) was given us directly and integrally by Our Lord in the Deposit of Faith. While the essentials of the liturgy were also given us by Our Lord, the external forms of the lex orandi (law of praying) were developed by the Church slowly under the guidance of the Holy Ghost and in absolute fidelity to the Deposit of Faith, which they epitomize in ritual. It was only after churchmen compromised with a host of modern errors — weakening the lex credendi — that they tampered with the lex orandi and gave us the liturgical revolution in all its destructive ugliness.

(For a further explanation of the traditional axiom, lex orandi lex credendi, see the article, The Contradiction of Core. Scroll down to the subheading “The Law of Praying.”)