Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Vatican Identifies Real Cause of Sexual Abuse Scandals

Recent attempts to blame Jews, Freemasons and homosexuals for the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church having been roundly condemned by the outside world, the Vatican has announced that it has uncovered the true conspirators responsible. It turns out that the real perpetrators were the Gypsies, the mentally and physically disabled, and trade unionists, along with a few Jehovah's Witnesses.

Pope Benedict referred to his own traumatic wartime experiences in disavowing earlier comparisons to anti-semitism.

However, identifying those guilty of the sexual abuse may not be the end of the Vatican's troubles: there still remains the thorny question of why the church bureaucracy failed to act on the abuse for decades...

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

The Religious Makeup of the Supreme Court

I heard a fascinating piece on NPR this morning: Justice Stevens may retire soon, and the two leading candidates to replace him are both Jewish (the third is Catholic). If this happens, the Supreme Court will be made up entirely of Catholics and Jews and, for the first time, have no Protestants.

NPR called discussion of this topic "radioactive", but nonetheless I'm going to advance a theory that should offend everybody equally. Catholics and Jews make good constitutional judges because they have a lifetime of practice in parsing the finest nuances of strict, elaborate, and often ambiguous regulations, looking for loopholes. Protestants, conversely, are more accustomed to applying barely-tenable interpretations that suit their purposes of the moment, or outright picking and choosing which strictures to follow and which to ignore.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Pope Retracts Comparison To Anti-Semitism

In his Easter Sunday address, the Pope unreservedly retracted the comparison that had been made by his personal preacher between vocal criticism of the Catholic Church for its failure to address sexual abuse and centuries of anti-semitism that culminated in the Holocaust.

"The comparison is entirely inappropriate," said the Pontiff. "What the Church is being subjected to is much more serious. A better comparison would be to the crucifixion of Christ."

P.S. If the Vatican is reading this: It's just satire. Please don't send Opus Dei operatives to assassinate me.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Decoding Engineers

What they say and what it means:

"It's hard, but doable" = "I've already done it, and I've been keeping it in my back pocket until I can get the most kudos for it"

"It's non-trivial" = "It's really hard, and I don't immediately see a way to approach it"

"It's distinctly non-trivial" = "It may require violating the laws of physics"

"It simply can't be done" = "I don't want to do it or talk about it. Since you have no way to know whether I'm telling the truth, this ends the discussion."