Catholic liberals and moderate Republicans

One thing I’ll never understand is people who don’t fight back.

There is a real struggle going on in the Church right now between conservatives, who seem intent on making President Obama a target and downplaying the Church’s social mission, and more progressive Catholics, who think the Church should be placing even more emphasis on social justice and issue more emphatic rejections of budget cuts along the lines of Bishop Blaire’s letter. Conservatives have had the upper hand over the last few months, but Bishop Blaire’s statement can be seen in part as a response to the pushback from Catholic liberals who wondered where the Bishops have been in the ongoing budget fight.

The “Catholic liberals” will bend over and take it the same way “moderate Republicans” do. Tell me I’m an anti-Catholic bigot in the comments, folks.






197 replies
  1. 1
    cathyx says:

    The Catholic Bishops are busy moving priest pedophiles around to different parishes. They don’t know anything about what you’re talking about.

  2. 2
    SatanicPanic says:

    This will end well

  3. 3
    I Am An Important Internet Commenter says:

    Yeah dude, Catholic leftists don’t exist. Neither did Dorothy Day and Oscar Romero, who were actually badgers in disguise.

  4. 4
    The Snarxist Formerly Known As Kryptik says:

    I think the difference here Doug is that there is a much more tangible disconnect between the voting behaviors of rank-and-file Catholics and Church leadership compared to rank-and-file Republicans and the GOP leadership.

    Not that it excuses the Church’s doubling down on their massive dipshittery. It’s a reason why I’ve long since lapsed.

  5. 5
    efgoldman says:

    Don’t forget, the “Liberals” (a relative term)(*) have to contend not only with the conservative GOBP bleepholes, but also with their own red hat brigade that makes up the majority of the hierarchy.

    (*) I remember genuine liberal Catholics, like Congressman Father Drinan, a great Jesuit.

  6. 6
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    I’m afraid the “progressive Catholics” need to do what those disgusted with the hierarchy did some five centuries ago.

    Just fucking leave.

  7. 7
    DougJ, Head of Infidelity says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Which is what I did 15 years ago.

  8. 8
    Violet says:

    One thing I’ll never understand is people who don’t fight back.

    The entire structure of the Catholic church is designed to keep people from fighting back.

  9. 9
    yopd1 (formerly BDeevDad) says:

    Actually, some priests are fighting back.

    At least six Catholic parishes in Washington state have ignored the Seattle Archbishop’s call to gather signatures for a referendum repealing the state’s recently-enacted marriage equality law, calling the effort “hurtful and seriously divisive in our community.”

  10. 10
    kindness says:

    ‘Bend over and take it’….You sound so much like a Priest when you talk like that….

  11. 11
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @DougJ, Head of Infidelity:

    Well, there’s proof positive that you’re an “anti-Catholic bigot”, Doug.

    Bending over an taking it is putting yourself in the position of an altar boy. Not a good place to be, frankly.

  12. 12

    From what I know about the Catholic Church, which ain’t much from being raised Southern Baptist, is that the very popular John Paul, but very conservative Pope, wingnutized the CC through and through, stamping out any liberal paths to power in that org. For well into the future as an institution that change is often marked as slight and by the century/

    edit – and DougJ is an anti catholic bigot, per request :- ),

  13. 13
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @efgoldman: Drinan was great. I lived fairly briefly in his district while he was still allowed to represent it.

  14. 14
    efgoldman says:

    @Violet:

    The entire structure of the Catholic church is designed to keep people from fighting back.

    Exactly, starting at the same time the kids start school.

    @yopd1 (formerly BDeevDad):

    At least six Catholic parishes in Washington state have ignored the Seattle Archbishop’s call to gather signatures…

    Good thing the Inquisition has given up burnings at the stake in favor of sending renegade priests to re-education parishes in the wilderness.

  15. 15
    BGinCHI says:

    It’s almost like the Catholic Church needs a Reformation.

  16. 16
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @General Stuck:

    The former Archbishop of Seattle, who made quite a fuss in the 80’s by withholding part of his income tax payments specifically because of the Reagan Administration’s nuclear weapons fetish, was basically purged by JPII and his prime henchman, Ratzinger.

    Who is, as we all know, the current Pope.

  17. 17
    Alexandra says:

    Of course they’ll take it. Liberation theology was partially strangled. When your livelihood and status are at risk, it’s better to live on your knees than die on your feet. Or something.

    Alexandra +2

  18. 18
    Catsy says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    I’m afraid the “progressive Catholics” need to do what those disgusted with the hierarchy did some five centuries ago.
    __
    Just fucking leave.

    This. 1000 motherfucking times this.

    The RCC is long overdue for a good schism. The church leadership is completely and totally out of touch with much of the laity from a philosophical standpoint, and the way the Church has actively and knowingly laundered and protected known pedophiles in their ranks should be enough to cause any decent person to leave.

    There is simply no wiggle-room in Catholic doctrine for disobeying or unseating the Church leadership. Obeying their decrees is one of the defining aspects of what it means to be a Roman Catholic rather than some other flavor of apostolic religion.

  19. 19
    DougJ, Head of Infidelity says:

    @Alexandra:

    Yeah, that’s about right.

  20. 20
  21. 21
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @efgoldman:

    Good thing the Inquisition has given up burnings at the stake in favor of sending renegade priests to re-education parishes in the wilderness.

    Which is pretty much exactly what happened to Raymond Hunthausen, who I was referring to in my last post.

  22. 22
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    My wife’s a “Catholic liberal”.

    She’s voted with her feet, hasn’t been to church in years. They get none of our money. And they never will.

    They can whittle down their church to the True Believers and sit on their stolen gold for eternity for all I give a shit.

  23. 23
    Violet says:

    I just read the linked column. It’s EJ Dionne. Here’s paragraph that fits right into his “both sides do it” habit:

    My hunch is that the attack on the nuns will bring a lot more blowback from progressive Catholics. Up to now, Catholic conservatives have been especially aggressive in pushing the Bishops’ Conference to the right. The Bishops will now be getting a lot more pressure from Catholics on the other side. I think conservatives will ultimately regret targeting the sisters. The nuns have a great many friends in the Church.

    Yes, the Bishops Conference for years has been actively and comprehensively pushing the US Government to take the country back to the 1850’s. Now one Bishop writes a Sternly Worded Letter and EJ Dionne gets all excited that Catholics will now Rally Round the Nuns. Uh huh. The very same Bishops who don’t want women to have any control over their own bodies will happily let a bunch of lay people and nuns influence policy. When pigs fly.

  24. 24
    gaz says:

    @Catsy: This

  25. 25
    srv says:

    The RC Church is not the flock. It is the clergy.

    As a Marist brother told me as a teen, Liberal Catholics are confused Episcopalians who keep writing checks to Rome.

  26. 26
    gaz says:

    @srv: my only problem with them is they keep writing checks to rome.

  27. 27
    Richard says:

    Back in 2004, the then Cardinal Ratzinger issued a church edict suggesting that pro-choice politicians by denied communion. The edict came shortly after Laura Bush made a special trip to the Vatican and may have played a significant role in John Kerry’s loss (Bush won the Catholic vote).

    Would the Catholic Church ever deny communion to Catholic politicians like Paul Ryan who push a decidedly unchristian fiscal policy? Somehow, I doubt it.

  28. 28
    gaz says:

    @Richard: Yeah. Funny, that.

  29. 29
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Violet:

    The entire structure of the Catholic church is designed to keep people from fighting back.

    Institutionally, yes. But practically, it’s more complicated, with a kind of realpolitik whereby lay Catholics ignore the hierarchy on particular doctrinal points while the hierarchy ignores the fact that it’s being ignored. (Atrios makes the right distinction here.) Then there are moments of pushback like the one against Liberation Theology, and what we’re seeing now in Papa Ratzi’s red-beanie blitzkrieg in the US.

    Most church-attending Catholics are to some degree “Catholic in spite of [x]”; pushing those limits will just send people to the exits, and I think Papa Ratzi is now comfortable with the idea of purging the pews.

  30. 30
    Richard says:

    A quote from the favorite book of the “Catholic” Paul Ryan (he makes his staffers read it)…

    They claim that they perceive a mode of being superior to your existence on this earth. The mystics of spirit call it “another dimension,” which consists of denying dimensions. The mystics of muscle call it “the future,” which consists of denying the present. To exist is to possess identity. What identity are they able to give to their superior realm? They keep telling you what it is not, but never tell you what it is. All their identifications consist of negating: God is that which no human mind can know, they say—and proceed to demand that you consider it knowledge—God is non-man, heaven is non-earth, soul is non-body, virtue is non-profit, A is non-A, perception is non-sensory, knowledge is non-reason. Their definitions are not acts of defining, but of wiping out.

    Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

  31. 31
    Felinious Wench says:

    Not Catholic (heathen Episcopalian, i’ll see all of you in hell) but love cathedrals of any kind, especially shrines to Mary. One day, I know Catholics will figure out they worship the Great Mother Goddess, I just know they will. Until then, I’ll bask in the symbols to her that have never been about Mary, Mother of Jesus.

    I digress.

    Every time I visit a Catholic cathedral, I notice all the collection boxes. They’re everywhere. St. Louis in New Orleans. Notre Dame de Paris felt like walking into a hive of money changers. You must pay for prayer candles, for access to certain placed, etc. Chartres is blessedly free of it, but others are just full of donation boxes. Then I go to St Peters, wall to wall riches.

    If I knew the money I’d give to a Catholic cathedral would go to food, shelter, care for the community, or upkeep of the cathedral, I’d gladly donate. But I don’t. And if even 1 penny goes to the hierarchy, I won’t give money. I will not support them.

    So, I visit and admire and say my thanks to the Goddess, and give my money elsewhere.

  32. 32
    efgoldman says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease:

    She’s voted with her feet, hasn’t been to church in years. They get none of our money. And they never will.

    mrs efgoldman, a Recovering Catholic (her term) has belonged to Episcopal churches since our daughter was born, 30+ years ago.
    She and her four siblings have not been inside a church, except for weddings and funerals, in twenty-five or more years.

  33. 33
    kay says:

    @Violet:

    It’s just sort of baffling that the abuse trial in Philadelphia isn’t getting their attention.

    It’s devastating. They’ve already had a priest plead and completely corraborate one of the witnesses, the judge ordered another priest to appear and authenticate the records of reports of abuse they found, so those are coming in, and one of the witnesses just implicated another priest who is now a Bishop in West Virginia.

    To say it’s heating up is an understatement.

  34. 34
    PSP says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:
    I know a fair number of Catholics that have done just that, and joined the Episcopalians. I wonder which group is bigger: 1) conservative Episcopalians that have become Catholic or 2) liberal Catholics that have become Episcopalian. I know group 1 gets all the press.

  35. 35
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    I figured it what the RRC was about was clear enough with John Paul II publicly humiliated the priest leading the Liberation Theology movement and then went on to break bread with Pinoche.

  36. 36
    Ben Franklin says:

    Relatively on topic….

    Sign the petition; Violence Against Women Nuns Act.

    http://thinkprogress.org/take-action/vawa-b/

  37. 37
    efgoldman says:

    @kay: @kay:

    …one of the witnesses just implicated another priest who is now a Bishop in West Virginia.

    That’s OK. Bernard the Enabler and Concealer (formerly Cardinal Law of Boston) just retired from the witness protection parish in Rome which he received as a gift from the Polish Pope. There’s room for the guy from WVa.

  38. 38
    Violet says:

    @pseudonymous in nc:
    Most followers of any given religion are “Religious followers in spite of [x]”. Following every word of doctrine is very difficult if not impossible due to conflicts in the doctrine itself.

    I get the distinction between the structure and institution and real politik nature of how things are actually done. It does seem like the current Pope wants to purge the liberals from the church.

  39. 39
    zoot says:

    the Catholic Church is the antithesis to the teachings of Jesus in all its authoritarianism, wealth obsession, and intolerance so why bother talking about their horrid hypocrisy. If they weren’t so insufferable and disastrous for humanity it would be hilarious.

    Oh, and revoke their tax exempt status.

  40. 40

    @srv:

    As a Marist brother told me as a teen, Liberal Catholics are confused Episcopalians who keep writing checks to Rome.

    All but one of the Episcopalians I’ve ever met (and discussed the topic with) were originally Catholics. I’ve been to some of their weddings and funerals and can’t much tell the difference from what I grew up with, either. The church architecture’s even the same.

    Which kind of enforces the original point… if you really do want/need/crave/etc the High Church way of doing things, it’s not like there’s nowhere else to go for much the same experience.

  41. 41
    Richard says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques:

    Along those lines, the Catholic Church evidently got along famously for decades with Spanish dictator, Francisco Franco.

  42. 42
    Delia says:

    @Felinious Wench:

    Chartres is blessedly free of it, but others are just full of donation boxes. Then I go to St Peters, wall to wall riches.

    You know that’s the very thing that got Martin Luther going.

  43. 43
    Dave says:

    Ok well as atrios says, only conservatives are in charge, but more than that they’re in charge of the whole interface between the church and the nation. What I mean is, the catholic church is a world-wide organization with like a billion members, and they’re all spoken for by like fifty giant assholes here in the u.s.

    The problem, then, is that there is only one political arm of the church, not that there aren’t liberal Catholics fighting back.

    Still, I don’t understand liberal Catholics either, as I lapsed when I became liberal. They’re really incomparable things.

  44. 44
    JCJ says:

    @Richard:

    I always enjoy the fact that a pro-torture, pro-war, pro-“shred the social safety net- fuck the poor” politician is seldom if ever denied communion as long as he/she is anti-abortion.

    Cognitive dissonance is my favorite thing!

  45. 45
    MattR says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: @efgoldman: I was pretty shocked to find out that my father made sure that my mother knew he wanted to receive last rites. I know that he had studied to be a priest when he was younger, but considering he married a Jewish woman and that the only time I saw him in a church was his mother’s funeral (where I am pretty sure he did not take communion) I thought that was completely in his past. OTOH, there is a certain “can’t hurt” logic to his decision, especially since it did not offend my mom, my sister or I.

  46. 46
    Jukebox says:

    @Delia: Actually, it’s what got Jesus going, too.

  47. 47
    Joe Bohemouth says:

    You are exactly right, Doug. People like EJ Dionne will bitch and continue to throw money in the collection basket. This is why I have stopped not-attending my local Catholic church and taken my non-attendance to the local UCC congregation.

  48. 48
    AA+ Bonds says:

    No, you’re not a bigot, you’re just acting fucking stupid and apparently want the Democrats to lose in 2012

    But go ahead, attack a voting bloc that’s split 50/50 between you and your opponents and will be utterly demoralized if you continue to identify the Church with its despots instead of the Body of Christ

    This shit is just as dumb as “HAHAHA LET THE SOUTH SECEDE! I don’t care about the black people who live there or anything”, Doug, and I expect better of you

  49. 49
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    I think that even a lot of Catholic liberals have internalized the belief that Rome (or communion with Rome, lest I forget the Eastern Catholic Churches) is necessary to be part of the One True Church. That, plus a weird bit of vestigal ethnic pride, despite the fact that there aren’t too many Irish or Italian immigrants these days (of the “my great grandfather came here in the 1890s and worked in a coal mine!” sort).

    And yeah, former Catholic (for a time) myself here, and there’s no way I’d even attend a liberal parish, because liberal priests and their congregations exist solely at the whim of bishops who don’t want to rock the boat and cause controversy. All you need is a new, young, orthodox bishop who comes in wanting to clean house, and say good bye to your liberal oasis.

  50. 50
    Colleen says:

    One penny to the Catholic church and you are complicit in known continuing child sexual abuse. That is all and there is no discussion about it.

  51. 51
    AA+ Bonds says:

    The real meaning of all this is that you don’t have the balls to speak out about how the Church needs to respect its members, but I’m not surprised, because it seems that no non-Catholic Democrats have said balls

    What I am saying is that my mom has more balls than you, Doug

  52. 52
    eemom says:

    for anyone who might be interested in a perspective on this topic that is neither Catholic apologist nor Catholic bashing, I was impressed by this piece.

  53. 53

    Well, since there is no god, there seems little point in giving power or money to anybody in the Catholic hierarchy, or any denomination for that matter. Convince people to keep their charity local, and out of the hands of the Pedophile Protection Program(TM), and the auctoritas of the Pope means nothing outside of the Holy See.

    What I’m saying is: reduce the Pope to the petty Medieval principate the he his. Nobody gives a shit about Andorra or Morroco or San Marino. Why pay attention to a tiny, isolated spit of land that has zero relevance to the post-industrial Western world?

  54. 54
    AA+ Bonds says:

    @Richard:

    LOL and I hope you know that the saturation of the Paul Ryan/Ayn Rand connection throughout the left wing media has a shit ton to do with hard work by Catholics United calling him out about it

    But no, let’s pretend like left wing Catholics aren’t vocal about members of their church, because then we’ll have someone else to blame when the Democrats lose the Catholics and thus the election

  55. 55
    AA+ Bonds says:

    If you think the movement against the Vietnam War was awesome and yet don’t respect left-wing Catholics, I invite you to consider that you are taking a shit in your own mouth

    Are you, Doug? I’d like to think you aren’t

  56. 56
    AA+ Bonds says:

    You’d think that atheists wouldn’t make the same mistakes as white bourgie liberal Protestants but judging by the FP they’re basically the same people with the same views

  57. 57
    AA+ Bonds says:

    @pacem appellant:

    What I’m saying is: reduce the Pope to the petty Medieval principate the he his. Nobody gives a shit about Andorra or Morroco or San Marino. Why pay attention to a tiny, isolated spit of land that has zero relevance to the post-industrial Western world?

    Because some people don’t come from the post-industrial Western world? And some of those people EVEN VOTE IN AMERICAN ELECTIONS

    Saints preserve us from this myopia

  58. 58
    AA+ Bonds says:

    How much do any of you fools even know about left wing Catholicism

    My guess is that you don’t know shit and probably actively avoid investigating how influential it has been in nearly every American political movement you consider as the basis of your politics

    Your loss, and I do mean loss, as in November 2012

  59. 59
    AA+ Bonds says:

    I’ll tell you what will prove you aren’t bigots, follow these folks for a while . . .

    http://twitter.com/#!/catholicsunited
    https://www.facebook.com/CatholicsUnited

    . . . and then feel free to get the fuck over yourselves

  60. 60

    @AA+ Bonds: And those non-post-industrial voting Americans are….? Where, the Marianas Islands? Are you serious?

    I was expressing frustration with the Village for bowing to a feudal lord, whether it be Saletan or JPII. The Holy See is irrelevant, even the US media acknowledged this when it noted that Benedict refused to confront Casto over the whole oppressive communist thing. Without Rome’s benign protection of the quaint institution, there is no Papacy.

  61. 61
    Foregone Conclusion says:

    It all depends on what the next generation of priests looks like, because they will be the next-but-one generation of bishops, and eventually one of them will be Pope. I have often thought that the reason why the hopes of Vatican II were never fully fulfilled was because, across Europe and North America, the more liberal Catholics of the 1950s and 1960s had children that lapsed, and certainly didn’t go into the priesthood; the more conservative families sent their children into the seminaries at age 14 or whatever. The result is a more conservative base of priests, which means more conservative bishops, and eventually leads to the current College of Cardinals.

    Will liberal Catholics lapse, leading to an ultra-conservative rump in fifty years time, or will the natural trend towards social liberalism be reflected in an increasingly liberal clergy across the western world? Or to put it another way, would you prefer a virulently wingnutty cult with ten million members to a bigger church which is larger but more ambiguous, and where the bishops are made to look like paper tigers whenever they talk about social issues by their quietly dissenting congregation? I might also point out that for most Catholics – in fact, most religious people – it’s not political, although it might vaguely inform their politics. It’s about spirituality, it’s about culture, it’s about friendship, tradition, whatever. Demand that ‘liberal Catholics’ choose between their political and religious affiliations, and you might get a nasty surprise.

    For what it’s worth, I think that the Catholic bishops in America is far more politicised than any group of clergy outside the Vatican (and perhaps Ireland), and South America (who are politicised in a quite different way!) At the moment in the UK, there are some ugly words being spoken about gay marriage (some from the fluffy Anglicans as well, incidentally), but the response has been so lacklustre you can tell they’ll accept it, just like they accepted civil partnerships, and legalisation before that. And although abortion is still quite hot-button, I’ve heard as many words from the pulpit about global trade and economic injustice as I have about sex and abortion. American bishops seem to have an abortion fixation, which I would understand if they had as strong a capital punishment fixation!

  62. 62
    Felinious Wench says:

    @AA+ Bonds: Uh….what? Liberal Protestants are the same thing as Athiests? Athiests are the same thing as liberal Protestants? I’m so confused.

  63. 63
    Calouste says:

    @Felinious Wench:

    That’s not particularly limited to Catholic churches. I once went to a small and beautiful Orthodox church on Cyprus that is part of a World Heritage Site, and the priest pretty much came rushing out with his hand held out for a donation (and after a short tour he disappeared, presumably to spend the donation on lunch).

    In the end, I don’t think the collection boxes are that much of an issue, these places are rather expensive to maintain tourist attractions as well as houses of worship.

  64. 64
    AA+ Bonds says:

    @pacem appellant:

    Oh I see now it’s a global system you want to talk about because you’re super embarrassed that you forgot non-white people exist

  65. 65
    AA+ Bonds says:

    @Felinious Wench:

    Uh….what? Liberal Protestants are the same thing as Athiests? Athiests are the same thing as liberal Protestants? I’m so confused.

    I mean they are apparently as stupid as each other in the exact same bourgie gated-community ways when it comes to the Catholic Church and its left wing

  66. 66
    AA+ Bonds says:

    @Foregone Conclusion:

    Will liberal Catholics lapse, leading to an ultra-conservative rump in fifty years time, or will the natural trend towards social liberalism be reflected in an increasingly liberal clergy across the western world? Or to put it another way, would you prefer a virulently wingnutty cult with ten million members to a bigger church which is larger but more ambiguous, and where the bishops are made to look like paper tigers whenever they talk about social issues by their quietly dissenting congregation?

    Hush, you’re going to make people feel as stupid as they look in this thread

  67. 67
    Felinious Wench says:

    @AA+ Bonds: I know plenty, actually. My aunt was a liberal Catholic nun. Liberal Catholics and Catholic movements have been at the forefront of liberal issues, always. But the fact is, that commitment has not extended to women’s rights. And the Catholic hierarchy is after my rights to my own uterus. Therefore, the Catholuc church and I have no use for each other. They’ve not done much for me and my fellow females.

    Again, Catholic nun as a role model. She eventually left her order in protest of the church’s policies towards women. Her causes became women’s rights and ending the death penalty in Texas, God love her.

  68. 68
    AA+ Bonds says:

    @Felinious Wench:

    And my mother marched for the ERA with my sister in her womb with a group of women from her parish, went on to provide services to persecuted communities as a lay employee for the diocese, and when fired for lack of funding, openly and vocally blamed the bishops and child rape scandals for the decrease in donations

    I am very glad you are not as blinkered and wrong on this issue as DougJ

  69. 69

    @AA+ Bonds: I just found it odd that you think non-post-industrial is a significant (or even existant) electoral bloc. Catholics and atheists will turn out in hordes in favor of B.O. over W.R. this November, and what frightens me is that the reasons why aren’t too dissimilar.

  70. 70
    JoyfulA says:

    @efgoldman: Congressman Drinan was forced by the Vatican to stop mixing politics and religion.

  71. 71
    AA+ Bonds says:

    And just to clear things up: EJ Dionne may be a centrist liberal but he is by no means a liberal Catholic as his stated position on this issue is directly opposed to that of a majority of Catholics in the U.S.

    If you really want some sort of NPR-listening bubble-headed media celebrity for the liberal Catholic POV, try Joan Walsh who at the very least is representative of those viewpoints in her writing

  72. 72
    Ben Franklin says:

    @AA+ Bonds:

    And just to clear things up: EJ Dionne may be a centrist liberal but he is by no means a liberal Catholic as his stated position on this issue is directly opposed to that of a majority of Catholics in the U.S.

    Indeed. He lives in fear of the ‘Lash’.

  73. 73
    burnspbesq says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    When I want your advice on matters of faith, I’ll ask for it.

  74. 74
    burnspbesq says:

    @pacem appellant:

    “Well, since there is no god”

    Sez you.

  75. 75
    David Koch says:

    I believe in going to Sunday services every weekend, unless there’s a ballgame on.

  76. 76

    @burnspbesq: Well, there isn’t. What do you know that I don’t?

  77. 77
    Soonergrunt says:

    The “Catholic liberals” will bend over and take it the same way “moderate Republicans” do. Tell me I’m an anti-Catholic bigot in the comments, folks.

    I’m still liberal. I’m not Catholic anymore. To my memory, you’ve got it about 100% right.

  78. 78
    Ben Franklin says:

    @burnspbesq:

    So, you belong to a thinking man’s faith.

    Wattashok…

  79. 79
    burnspbesq says:

    @pacem appellant:

    “Well, there isn’t. What do you know that I don’t?”

    For openers, I know the difference between knowledge and belief. You clearly don’t.

  80. 80
    burnspbesq says:

    @DougJ:

    No need to beat the plaque that says a horse once died here.

  81. 81
    Ben Franklin says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Why don’t you express your a priori knowledge regarding the existence of God?

  82. 82
    rikyrah says:

    I didn’t find anything wrong with what you wrote.

    then again, I’m not Catholic.

  83. 83
    eemom says:

    @AA+ Bonds:

    why don’t you stop foaming at the mouth for ten seconds and read the piece I linked above. A new voice in your head might do you some good.

  84. 84
    gaz says:

    @Judas Escargot, Your Postmodern Neighbor:

    if you really do want/need/crave/etc the High Church way of doing things, it’s not like there’s nowhere else to go for much the same experience.

    I have to heartily cosign this, even if I must do so with tongue planted firmly in cheek.

    Episcopal Church = Catholic Church sans Kiddie Rape.

    So what’s the hold up? heh.

  85. 85
    efgoldman says:

    @Dave:

    Still, I don’t understand liberal Catholics either, as I lapsed when I became liberal.

    More proof that the church is all about indoctrination and power: the word “lapsed” that you, the church itself, and millions like you still use for those who have left the church. The implication is that you (all) will come to your senses and go back. I’m not a “lapsed” Jew; I never heard of a lapsed Methodist or Unitarian or Buddhist…

  86. 86
    Robert says:

    As a liberal Catholic who doesn’t bend over backwards and take it, I have to disagree with the no liberal Catholic assertion. Those of us willing to fight for what’s right are the distinct minority. I discuss major Catholic policies with my priest, arguing the theological basis for some terrible stances whenever I can meet with him. I write letters to the higher ups that I can get the contact information for. I organize meetings with other similarly minded Catholics to collect their thoughts on how we can try to change some of the backwards and highly damaging policies that do not fall in line with Christian values.

    We exist. We’re just stuck behind a lot of red tape and, sadly, threatened to keep our mouths shut. I won’t.

  87. 87
    efgoldman says:

    @AA+ Bonds: Okay, we know what you think. Now just shut the fuck up. You’ve clearly caught the threadjacking virus from M_c or Samara or whatever the name is this week. Or maybe you’re it.

  88. 88
    DougJ, Head of Infidelity says:

    @Robert:

    That’s even better than leaving. My feeling is that people who don’t have the energy to do what’s right — i. e., what you’re doing — should leave the church unless they share the hierarchy’s Frano-Mussolini style view of the world.

  89. 89
    Felinious Wench says:

    @Robert: Some people fight from outside, some from in. My beef (and I am not knocking you or other liberal Catholics) is that the hierarchy could not be pumping their crap out into the public sphere if they didn’t have a regular source of funding. And that money is partially provided by some good, Liberal Catholics who donate in their churches….all over the world.

    My aunt, who stayed a Catholic, was more than willing to donate for a church roof or food bought for the food pantry herself, or work at Covenant House and homeless shelters her entire life. But she refused to donate one penny that might have gone to the hierarchy.

  90. 90
    Ben Franklin says:

    @DougJ, Head of Infidelity:

    should leave the church unless they share the hierarchy’s Frano-Mussolini style view of the world.

    That’s where it hurts; revenue. Imagine the repentant attitude if tithing is reduced to a significant degree

  91. 91
    gaz says:

    @Felinious Wench:

    ) is that the hierarchy could not be pumping their crap out into the public sphere altar boys if they didn’t have a regular source of funding. And that money is partially provided by some good, Liberal Catholics who donate in their churches….all over the world.

    FTFY, and in any case, I agree =)

  92. 92
    gaz says:

    @efgoldman: that’s an interesting observation.

    Now forgive me, but at least among the tibetan school of buddhism ;) Isn’t an enlightened buddhist sort of by definition a lapsed buddhist? Adherence to dogma is a worldly attachment, after all ;)

    /tongue in cheek

  93. 93
    Cassidy says:

    So…am I understanding that AA+ Bonds is pro-sex abuse then? That’s an odd position to take.

  94. 94
    Ben Franklin says:

    @Cassidy:

    So…am I understanding that AA+ Bonds is pro-sex abuse then? That’s an odd position to take

    That’s offensive. Catholic laymen of good standing are just as outraged about pederast priests. .

  95. 95
    mclaren says:

    One thing I’ll never understand is people who don’t fight back.

    Take a look in the mirror, DougJ. Obama orders the murder of an American citizen without even accusing him of a crime and you smile sweetly. You don’t even fight back.

    Obama signs off on more tax cuts for billionaires and you swoon with delight. You don’t even fight back.

    Obama pumps up U.S. military spending by 8% while freezing the rest of the annual budget, and you get giddy with delight. You don’t even fight back.

    Like the rest of the obots, you keep telling us we have “no choice” but to vote for Obama. You don’t even fight back.

    The only way to stop the abuse, DougJ, is to fight back.

    Don’t vote for Obama in November. Write in Elizabeth Warren.

    And if you don’t, DougJ…please…explain to us why you don’t fight back against Obama as he morphs into Bush’s third term. Explain to us why you don’t fight back. So we can all understand.

  96. 96
    eemom says:

    @efgoldman:

    recovering Catholic/Jew/Buddhist/etc.?

  97. 97
    Ben Franklin says:

    Explain to us why you don’t fight back. So we can all understand.

    He’s here, everyday herding the Posse Apologists. I only see your handle on rare occasions.

  98. 98
    gaz says:

    @mclaren:

    The only way to stop the abuse, DougJ, is to fight back.
    Don’t vote for Obama in November. Write in Elizabeth Warren.

    Particularly, if DougJ lives in a swing state writing in elizabeth warren will not send a message to obama. It will however, send a message to republicans. Because your advice, taken by many, would directly lead to one President Willard Mitt Romney.

    Now, I’ll explain the fundamental difference between this and leaving the Catholic Church. I’ll type slowly, so that you are sure to understand:

    If everybody who was disgusted with the idea of sexually abusing children LEFT THE CHURCH, what would happen? It’s not like the catholic church will be replaced by some even more malignant force. The same dynamic does not hold true of our political process. Do you understand yet, or should I try again, in crayon?

  99. 99
    gaz says:

    @Ben Franklin: I draw a line at the collection plate. You put money into the organization, you are guilty of aiding and abetting child abuse.

  100. 100
    Cassidy says:

    @Ben Franklin: I’m offended by people who continue to give money and time to an organization that protects pedophiles and bullies the victims.

  101. 101
    catclub says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Hunthausen!
    A mensch.

  102. 102
    Ben Franklin says:

    @gaz:

    Speaking for me; I understand the difference. I just don’t like having my non-choice rubbed in my face. You will object; ‘You do have a choice, in the lesser of two evils’ amirite?

    It insults my/our intelligence.

  103. 103
    gaz says:

    @Ben Franklin: Well, to be fair, I was directly addressing mclaren,

    and I don’t see any “ideal” choice in the two major parties.

    and I don’t like the “idea” of voting for the lesser of two evils.

    but like many people here, I wasn’t born yesterday. If I were to have a pick of any major american politician for president, FTR that would be Bernie Sanders. heh. But that’s not going to happen, he’s clearly too smart to want the job.

    i must play the hand I’m dealt, by the rules that are already written. I don’t get to choose that. So in that sense, although I do have a choice, it’s not a great one, and pretty well limited by the confines of what’s possible.

    My problem with mclaren is that he seemed to want to equate the two circumstances. That doesn’t even pass a cursory smell test. There is no equivalent dynamic at work WRT to being catholic. In fact, as another commenter pointed out, there’s already some alternatives that operate a lot like the catholic church, minus the kiddie rape. So yeah, no real analogy to be had there. mclaren is trolling, and I suspect he knows it. And that, by the way is why I was rude about it. I don’t like baldfaced intentional misrepresentations put forth to bolster a non-existent argument.

  104. 104
    Joseph Nobles says:

    @mclaren: Very cute how you think President Warren would be any different on the civil liberties front than President Obama.

  105. 105
    gaz says:

    @Ben Franklin: also I’m not saying this in any kind of disagreement with you – apologies if it read that way – it seems like we’re at least generally on the same page.

    I offered my reply in the spirit of providing a more articulate and less abrasive version of the response I gave to mclaren. More to clarify my own position than anything, because that might not have come through in all the indignation I wrote into my response to him. =)

  106. 106
    Loneoak says:

    World’s worst 420 thread.

  107. 107
    eemom says:

    @Loneoak:

    try to look at it in a more positive light: i.e., world’s best buzzkill thread.

  108. 108
    mclaren says:

    @gaz:

    Now, I’ll explain the fundamental difference between this and leaving the Catholic Church. I’ll type slowly, so that you are sure to understand:

    First sign of an idiot: someone who thinks that how fast you type has any relation to the comprehensibility of what you type.

    Second sign of an idiot:

    If everybody who was disgusted with the idea of sexually abusing children LEFT THE CHURCH, what would happen? It’s not like the catholic church will be replaced by some even more malignant force.

    Of course the catholic church will be replaced by some even more malignant force if everyone leaves it. The worshipers, who are weak-minded woolly-headed dupes desperately looking for something to worship, will latch onto the first toxic cult with hyper-aggressive recruiters that comes along — say, Scientology.

    If you don’t think that the Church of Scientology replacing the Catholic Church is far worse than the current situation, you’re either drunk or brain-damaged or on hard drugs.

    The same dynamic does not hold true of our political process. Do you understand yet, or should I try again, in crayon?

    Of course the same dynamic holds true of our political process. Haven’t you ever heard of the term “power vacuum”? Hint: it applies to politics. You’re just too stupid and too ignorant to realize it.

    …your advice, taken by many, would directly lead to one President Willard Mitt Romney.

    Exactly. And since President Willard Romney will enact exactly the same policies President Obama will enact once Obama gets re-elected, there’s absolutely no difference between the two situations.

    What a write-in vote for Elizabeth Warren will do is put future Democratic presidents on notice: when they betray their campaign promises, they get voted out of office. So future Democratic presidents will learn real goddamn fast that it’s vitally important not to make a bunch of promises and then betray them once in office.

    People as stupid and ignorant as gaz don’t realize that their entire argument is proof that the American political system is broken.

    Gaz’s argument is that it really, really, really matters who is president because the Republicans are so evil and so terrible and they’re destroy the country if they get into the White House. But in a functioning democratic system with actual checks and balances, it doesn’t matter how gets into the White House, because no one person can destroy the country.

    By telling us that it’s vitally important that we avoid letting Romney become president, gaz is already admitting that the entire system of American governance is so horribly wrecked that it’s beyond repair. Because if our central concern is who is the emperor, then we’re back in the Roman empire and the rule of law has gone away and there are no checks and balances on the emperor’s power, and anything the emperor wants to do, he does, and no one can stop it. Because we’re all slaves living or dying at the whim of an all-powerful emperor.

    If that’s the case, the American system of governance is already so trashed that it’s beyond repair. So best to send a loud clear message right now. Don’t vote for Obama. Demand a return of the rule of law. Demand accountability. Demand presidents who don’t constantly lie to their constituents and who don’t tear up the constitution and wipe their asses with it.

    “The lesser of two evils” is how Pol Pot got into power. When you keep voting for the lesser of two evils, eventually you’ll wind up voting for Pol Pot because he’s better than the alternative, Ed Gein.

    The only way out of that dead-end trap is to do the right thing. Fuck the lesser of two evils.

  109. 109
    mclaren says:

    @Joseph Nobles:

    If President Warren isn’t any better on obeying the constitution that Obama, impeach her and replace her with someone else.

  110. 110
    Joseph Nobles says:

    @mclaren: Why is it my responsibility to impeach President Warren? You’re the one who’s worked up about the whole thing.

  111. 111
    Corpsicle says:

    @AA+ Bonds: Shorter AA+ Bonds:
    The Catholic Church did one small good thing, 40 fucking years ago, so that completely cancels out all the serial child molesting.

    AA+ Bonds, a classic pedophilia apologist.

  112. 112
    gaz says:

    @mclaren: Wow. LOL. Your post totally speaks for itself so I think I’ll just let it hang their all on it’s own.

    After all, what can I add to such a masterpiece of idiocy?

  113. 113
    Cassidy says:

    @gaz: Someone has really been enjoying 420.

  114. 114
    gaz says:

    @Cassidy: They need to totally stop buying that “legal” shit they sell at the smoke shop. It’s hallucinogenic, (closer to DMT than LSD)

    Pot is so much more responsible. You can smoke it and totally not go off on a crazy rant of absolute nonsense.

  115. 115
    gaz says:

    @DougJ

    . Tell me I’m an anti-Catholic bigot in the comments, folks.

    I almost forgot:

    DougJ, you sir, are an anti-Catholic bigot. =)

    There. I did my part.

  116. 116
    Joseph Nobles says:

    @gaz: It’s not only that, it’s one more post that makes me think mclaren is really Glenn Greenwald’s psuedonym for trolling comments here at Balloon Juice.

    Especially this:

    But in a functioning democratic system with actual checks and balances, it doesn’t matter how(sic) gets into the White House, because no one person can destroy the country.

    This is exactly the rationale offered by Greenwald when he was supportive of the Afghanistan and Iraq Wars. He didn’t vote because he was sure that one person or even one party couldn’t have any real effect on the country because of the design of the government. When he suddenly realized that voting matters and civil engagement would be required of him, he launched into it full of fury, almost as if to punish both parties for making him have to care about all of this.

    Because isn’t that what both Greenwald and mclaren want? A government that restrains all from changing much of anything so that neither has to bother with politics? Maybe mclaren isn’t Greenwald, but in that case he or she should take a couple of writing classes so that she or he can stop writing so much like him.

  117. 117
    Cassidy says:

    @gaz: I hear ya. I think the closest I came to a crazy rant back in my pre-Army days was whether Blade Runner was the best sci-fi movie ever or the greatest sci-fi movie ever.

  118. 118
    gaz says:

    @Joseph Nobles:

    Because isn’t that what both Greenwald and mclaren want?

    I wish I knew what Glenn Greenwald wanted. The closest thing I can come up with is that he wants to preserve the rights of White Privileged Ex-Pats named Glenn Greenwald, but I am not so sure. It’s just that that’s the most consistent message I hear from him.

    I don’t even know what mclaren wants. In his entire rant, which he ended with a platitude of doing the “right thing” he never actually expressed what that was, in this context. Or for that matter, what Obama has to do with the catholic church in the first place…

    I’m not sure if he’s advocating voting for Romney (though I suppose not since he seems to think Obama and Romney are the same), maybe he’s saying not voting “is the right thing” (wouldn’t surprise me – the lessons of recent history – 2010 – seem to elude some people), or maybe he’s saying that bitching about Obama on a blog is the best course of action. I really don’t know. I couldn’t really figure it out through all of the spittle in that post.

    I do know that even were he correct on policy substance (and I disagree on degree, not on substance of that, FTR), he’s both ignoring the role of congress in all of this and ignoring supreme court appointments. I’m hoping he’s still new to the process. If so, he’ll figure it out, probably. If not, * shrug * – what can you do.

    I loved the scientology “analogy”. He seems to be arguing that scientology would somehow start issuing religious edicts and raping children if the catholic church ceased to exist, instead of basically just ripping off movie stars, which is what they do now. Personally, I think kiddie rape is worse, but that’s me.

    Anyway… it was, well, a fascinating look at the lengths someone will go to in order to convince themselves they are right about something. * shrug *

  119. 119
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    One thing I’ll never understand is people who don’t fight back.

    Because God, Jesus and Mary are perfect and always right. Since TPTB in the church run the show, every believer under them has to knuckle under to authoratah. Well, at least once a week anyway. Other than that it’s sin your ass off for the rest of the week for many of them. As long as they have that guarantee of Heaven and get to do whatever they want (good or bad), TPTB gets to do whatever they want.

    It’s not the journey they care about, it’s the destination.

  120. 120
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @gaz: TBogg described people like mclaren in this old post. She’s a real doozy.

  121. 121
    gaz says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass: Thanks for the link. I hadn’t read that link. I love TBogg. =)

    And yeah – ponies. I read the first few commenters on that post and I happen to agree with them. That doesn’t mean I’ll vote or campaign for a racist corporate ass-licker like Ron Paul.

    And my dirty little secret is I’ve only ever voted for a major party presidential candidate ONCE – and I’ll probably not do it again because there is no need. I live in a solid blue state. always a 3rd party ticket. I don’t recommend this if your state is purple. I basically agree with Jello Biafra. Which means I understand mclaren’s POV – or at least the core of it. But you have to know how to work as effectively as you can with vote you have, in the system you have. Unless you just want to see it all burn. For Ponies.

    PS: Astute readers may have realized I probably voted for Nader. I did. I’d do it again, were he on a major 3rd party ticket. I don’t want him to win. It’s about being included in the debates, matching fed funds (in the face of CU, i don’t know if that matters anymore), and that stuff. The irony is, if I thought he would win, I’d have never voted for him. =) It’s the way our system works, if you work it. This is how we get a 3rd party, 4th party, etc.

  122. 122
  123. 123
    mpbruss says:

    Agree completely. One more reason to be Protestant.

  124. 124
    gex says:

    Basically, if you pay money to the hierarchy, you can’t really call yourself a liberal Catholic. Generally speaking, if you don’t believe all the Catholic dogma you aren’t really a Catholic anyhow. This is not an institution that works on democracy. The Pope has a line from God, and he translates that down through the hierarchy to the people who are supposed to just follow.

    If liberal Catholics think their church works otherwise, more power to them as they pay to oppress gays, women, and abused children.

  125. 125
    gaz says:

    @gex: This.

  126. 126
    OzoneR says:

    One thing I’ll never understand is people who don’t fight back.

    Because we’re a country that’s raised to take it up the ass and like it.

    Same reason why most agree with everything Occupy Wall Street is fighting for, but think they should go get jobs.

  127. 127
    gex says:

    @Felinious Wench: Catholic Charities gets $3 billion from the feds. The money given to the church is used to pass anti-SSM marriage amendments and ban various forms of medical care for women. Whatever is left goes to enrich the hierarchy.

  128. 128
    mclaren says:

    @Joseph Nobles:

    Maybe mclaren isn’t Greenwald, but in that case he or she should take a couple of writing classes so that she or he can stop writing so much like him.

    Thank you for the compliment. Comparing my writing with Glenn Greenwald’s is an honor indeed.

  129. 129
    gex says:

    @Foregone Conclusion: The next generation of priests will be scary. Guess where every goddamn pedophile wants to work? For the powerful institution that goes out of its way to protect pedophiles and expose them to the maximum number of victims. Combine that with a church that is having trouble recruiting…

    I know that is not the church’s intention. It is, however, a logical result of their behavior.

  130. 130
    Joseph Nobles says:

    @mclaren: I see what you did there.

  131. 131

    @burnspbesq: I’m not convinced that you do. I’m not challenging your belief, nor your faith in a deity. I’m saying that there is no god (or gods), because there isn’t any a priori or a posteriori reasons to believe otherwise. You’re welcome to disagree, but you’re be hard-pressed to make that case with knowledge, belief, or faith. Night-night!

  132. 132
    gex says:

    SSM and the Boston case both kind of blew up at about the same time in the early 2000’s. American Catholics took action, got political, and took care of the problem.

    So now 30 states have anti-SSM amendments. Money, time, and effort that should have been used on the other issue.

    ETA: It wasn’t the hierarchy that was doing the grunt work and providing the votes.

  133. 133
    mclaren says:

    @gaz:

    I wish I knew what Glenn Greenwald wanted.

    The return of the rule of law.

    Every branch of the United States government has increasingly been pissing all over the law and throwing it out the window. First the drunk-driving C student and his torturer sidekick Dick Cheney launched an illegal war of aggression based on lies, and then they piled Pelion on Ossa by kidnapping and torturing American citizens without even accusing them of crimes. And to top it off, the Texan thug and his torturer sidekick took a giant shit on the first amendment and the fifth amendment and the sixth amendment and the fourteenth amendment by rounding up non-violent demonstrators before the 2008 Republican National Convention on terrorism charges before the non-violent demonstrators could even go out on the streets and demonstrate.

    Not to mention the massive violation of the fourth amendment involved in the warrantless wiretapping. Basically, the drunk-driving C student’s maladministration ripped up the constitution and wiped their asses with it. The rule of law went away.

    So I vote for Barack Obama and he gets elected, and whaddaya think happens?

    More gross violation of the basic rule of law. Now Obama is not only kidnapping and torturing people, he’s ordering U.S. citizens murdered without even accusing them of having committed a crime.

    And not only that: Obama has used the 1917 Espionage Act to prosecute more whistleblowers who were alerting the Americna people about corruption by military contractors and war crimes by the American military than the last four presidents put together. Even Bush never prosecuted whistleblowers the way Obama has.

    And Obama is now having his justice department go around and illegally seize foreign web domains. This entire process is so illegal, the megaupload case just blew up. The judge just said he doesn’t think there’s even going to be a trial because the government’s entire case is grossly illegal.

    “A US judge has put a bomb under the Megaupload case by informing the FBI that a trial in the United States may never happen. The cyberlocker was never formally served with the appropriate paperwork by the US authorities, as it is impossible to serve a foreign company with criminal charges.”

    Source: Megaupload Trial May Never Happen, Judge Says

    Now we’ve got the Supreme Court making shit up and violating precedents and shitting all over the law, first with Citizens United and then with the recent strip-search ruling and probably the ACA.

    Meanwhile, congress is pissing all over the constitution and ignoring the rule of law by passing grossly unconstitutional laws like the NDAA, which is even worse than the grossly unconstitutional Patriot Act and the 2001 AUMF.

    We’ve got all three branches of the U.S. government throwing out the basic rule of law that’s been the bedrock foundation of Western society since the Magna Carta 900 years ago.

    Yeah, I’m pretty sure that this is what has got the constitutional lawyer Glenn Greenwald pretty goddamn upset.

    And what do I want?

    That’s pretty goddamn clear too. I’d like the president of the united states to obey the law.

    Is that too much to ask?

    When the fifth amendment of the constitution says

    No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

    …It doesn’t mean “Unless the president feels like ordering an American citizen murdered.”

    And it doesn’t mean “Unless the congress passes a law that says the president can murder an American citizen without charges or a trial before he feels like it.”

    It means NO YOU CAN’T DO THAT.

    PERIOD.

    FULL STOP.

    Comprende?

  134. 134
    mclaren says:

    @Foregone Conclusion:

    The next generation of priests will be scary. Guess where every goddamn pedophile wants to work? For the powerful institution that goes out of its way to protect pedophiles and expose them to the maximum number of victims.

    Are you sure you’re not talking about congressional pages and the members of the Gay Older Pedophile party…?

  135. 135
    OzoneR says:

    @mclaren:

    What a write-in vote for Elizabeth Warren will do is put future Democratic presidents on notice: when they betray their campaign promises, they get voted out of office.

    We were talking about the Catholic Church, how did it end up becoming a purity party?

  136. 136
    gaz says:

    @pacem appellant: @burnspbesq: Ruh. Roh.

    Here we go. Truth vs. Fact. Truth is subjective. Fact is not. Both are every bit as “real”, depending on what you mean by “real”.

    To the strict empiricists: truth affects your life, belief is real if nothing else but because the act of “believing” in something has consequences. (good and bad, I’m not arguing general merit here). For example: If studies showed that people’s belief in a higher power had measurable benefits for someone who is struggling to quit some drug, then that belief would itself have intrinsic value. Furthermore, if it did no harm, it’s not intrinsically bad.

    To any god botherers (not many on the thread, if at all I imagine): The rest of us really wish you’d stop trying to confuse the domain of science, and your faith. Truth is not falsifiable. You don’t understand your faith well enough to try to impose it on the rest of us, nor do you own exclusive license to your interpretation. Nor is science a direct challenge to your belief system. If literalism was your goal, you’d of the bible you all need to go take Hebrew lessons and stop wearing blended fabrics. And if the pope tells you something is “bad”, guess what – he’s not “really” the Vicar of Christ every time he puts on the funny hat. In fact, he’s an old guy in a funny hat. Although it’s true he’s your pope. In fact he makes mistakes. In truth, that little voice inside you that keeps wispering, hmmm this guy hid rapists and was part of the nazi youth probably has a point. And maybe closer to what Jesus might of said than the latest edict of the week was. Then again, I’m still not sure how Jesus fits into institutions in the first place, so I guess I don’t know how the whole catholic thing quite works.

    Yeah. meh.

  137. 137
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    The return of the rule of law.

    The “return” of the rule of law? When did it exist before? Under Clinton, who pioneered extraordinary rendition? Under former CIA chief George HW Bush? Under Ronald “Iran-Contra” Reagan?

    Jimmy Carter, founder of the School of the Americas? Gerald Ford? Richard Nixon?

    Tell us, mclaren, when was this mythical era of the “rule of law” that you want to “return” us to? When FDR imprisoned American citizens based on their race? When Lincoln suspended habeus corpus?

    The second president of the United States signed the Alien & Sedition Acts. So when, exactly, did the “rule of law” reign in the US?

  138. 138
    gaz says:

    @Mnemosyne: PONIES!

  139. 139
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    The second president of the United States signed the Alien & Sedition Acts. So when, exactly, did the “rule of law” reign in the US?

    When the Supreme Court of the United States struck down the Alien & Sedition Acts as unconstitutional.

    Next question?

  140. 140
    Joseph Nobles says:

    @mclaren:

    except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger

    What does this mean? If only there was a constitutional lawyer we could consult…

  141. 141
    Mnemosyne says:

    Ah, the “rule of law.” Republicans like mclaren love to use that phrase to criticize Democrats:

    On a series of different international relations matters, such as war, international institutions, and treaties, President Clinton has accelerated the disturbing trends in foreign policy that undermine notions of democratic accountability and respect for the rule of law.

    That’s a quote from that lover of liberty and civil rights, John Yoo, who was terribly, terribly concerned about the “rule of law” and the “imperial presidency” … while a Democrat was president, that is.

  142. 142
    OzoneR says:

    @mclaren:

    When the Supreme Court of the United States struck down the Alien & Sedition Acts as unconstitutional.
    Next question?

    LOL, this never happened. Thomas Jefferson just refused to enforce them.

  143. 143
    Cassidy says:

    @Mnemosyne: When the Brits were in charge?

  144. 144
    gaz says:

    @mclaren: That never happened

    I took the time to find a link for you. It’s tough to find which is probably why you don’t know. (Stay in school, children)

    http://www.class.uh.edu/comm/c.....stera.html

  145. 145
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    In case you didn’t notice, I just bitterly criticized a two-term Republican president and his torturer sidekick above.

    So it won’t wash to call me a Republican, because I’ve hammered on them even harder than on Obama and the spineless Democrats.

    No, you’re going to have to come to grips with the actual problem — both political parties have decided to piss all over the constitution and ignore the rule of law. You can’t reduce this to a simple-minded blame game by screaming the R-word at anyone who points out Obama is grossly violating the constitution.

  146. 146
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    So right up until our third president started breaking treaties and forcibly removing Native Americans? Wow, that’s an impressive stretch of, what three whole years when the Rule of Law reigned in the United States?

    Oh, and the Supreme Court never actually overturned them, because judicial review did not exist yet:

    The Alien and Sedition Acts were, however, never appealed to the Supreme Court, whose right of judicial review was not established until Marbury v. Madison in 1803.

    Really, for someone who claims to be an expert in civil liberties, you sure don’t seem to know some very basic facts about the history of civil liberties in the US.

  147. 147
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    In case you didn’t notice, I just bitterly criticized a two-term Republican president and his torturer sidekick above.

    You mean the two-term Republican president that you voted for?

    Those Republican habits are hard to break, even after you leave the party. There will always be certain markers, like crying about the “rule of law” whenever a Democrat is in the White House.

  148. 148
    Cassidy says:

    @mclaren: Oh no, it’s noticed. Here’s the problem. You want to do the both sides do it, both sides bad, make a protest vote, so on and so forth. Unfortunately, for those of us who occupy a real world, you refuse to acknowledge that actions have consequences. You are completely out of your gourd if you think a second Obama term is akin to a Romney administration, a RW legislature, and a RW SCOTUS. That belief is not supported by facts.

    So, it’s not that no one has noticed. It’s just disregarded as purity trolling and a tenuous grasp on reality.

  149. 149
    mclaren says:

    Marbury v. Madison, 5 U.S. (1 Cranch) 137 (1803) by implication renders the Alien and Sedition Acts unconstitutional.

    I quote chief justice Marshall (19803:

    “Where a specific duty is assigned by law, and individual rights depend upon the performance of that duty, the individual who considers himself injured has a right to resort to the law for a remedy.”

    The Alien and Sedition Acts violate that principle and must therefore fall.

    Don’t you people bother to read the stuff you cite?

  150. 150
    gaz says:

    @Cassidy:

    @Mnemosyne: When the Brits were in charge?

    I see what you did there.

  151. 151
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Since I voted against the drunk-driving C student twice, now you’re just lying and making shit up…as usual.

  152. 152
    mclaren says:

    @Cassidy:

    Saying that the president of the united states has to obey the constitution is “purity trolling.”

    Riiiiiiiiiiiight.

    Go back to your tea party protest, kook.

  153. 153
    gaz says:

    @mclaren: You said it was STRUCK DOWN BY THE SUPREME COURT

    it was not. it hasn’t been reviewed by SCOTUS, but it’s regarded as unconstitutional anyway. The question of it’s constitutionality has never been officially posed to the court.

    Words mean things.

    Also since you said When it was struck down – when did you mean? 1964 – the closest it came to review?, IIRC – see my previous link

  154. 154
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Judicial review existed, it simply wasn’t codified in law. Just as Obama today is ordering U.S. citizens murdered without trial, it just wasn’t codified in law until the congress passed the unconstitutional NDAA.

    You don’t have a clue, do you?

  155. 155
    Cassidy says:

    @mclaren: Oh no. I’m pretty sure you’ve won the kook award tonight. I thought I was being nice. Normally when I encounter the “both sides do it” dumbasses I use words like “infantile” and “vapid”.

  156. 156
    Cassidy says:

    Obama today is ordering U.S. citizens murdered without trial

    Today? Really? He did that today? Are you sure? You’re getting screechy.

  157. 157
    Mnemosyne says:

    Oh, and I’ll just go ahead and say it: fuck al-Awlaki. I’m glad he’s dead, and I don’t fucking care that he didn’t get a trial first.

    You seem not to realize that conspiring to commit a crime is, you know, an actual fucking crime, not just “free speech”:

    Although Awlaki gave defendant operational flexibility, Awlaki instructed defendant that the only requirements were that the attack be on a U.S. airliner, and that the attack take place over U.S. soil. [my emphasis]

    Oh, but tell us again that all al-Awlaki did was help Abdulmutallab how to plan and execute the crime and introduce him to the bomb builder who helped Abdulmutallab build the bomb, so it was totally free speech. After all, if you hire someone to kill your wife, there’s no way you can go to jail because you didn’t pull the trigger yourself, amirite?

  158. 158
    mclaren says:

    What we’re seeing here is the usual scam we saw under the drunk-driving C student: point out some huge crime committed by the administration, and the response is a punch of nitpicking about trivia and irrelevant minutia.

    You people will do anything and everything to get away from the basic issue, won’t you?

    You just cannot…stand…to admit…that Barack Obama is a constitutional law professor who is now ordering American citizens murdered without trial or even charging with having committed a crime, and there’s something horribly, terribly wrong about that.

    C’mon, obots, throw up more irrelevant bullshit to obscure the basic issue here. Let’s here you scream and gibber about how I can’t be taken seriously because people in the early 1800s wore tricorn hats while nobody in the Executive Branch does today, so obviously the two situations aren’t remotely comparable and I don’t know what I’m talking about and blah blah woof woof, bullshit upon bullshit, irrelevant distraction after empty sophistry.

    All designed to distract us from the real issue:

    The president of the united states isn’t Caligula, he can’t just order people murdered because he feels like it.

  159. 159
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    Since I voted against the drunk-driving C student twice, now you’re just lying and making shit up…as usual.

    Really? You bought all of his bullshit about how we totally needed to invade Iraq, you believed Colin Powell at the UN, but you actually voted against him?

    Well, okay, if you say so. I will withdraw the voting charge since you have previously admitted to being an Iraq War supporter when Bush started banging the war drums. I knew it was bullshit from day one, but I’m the naive, trusting one when it comes to politicians, not you.

  160. 160
    Cassidy says:

    ordering American citizens murdered

    Citizen. There is no plural there. So, if you would like to be taken somewhat seriously, tone down the shreeky shreeky, and try to use things like facts and step away from the bath salts.

    Now, I seriously doubt that Obama woke up one morning and said “I feel like killing me a Muslim, American citizen”. I don’t think anything was done because “he felt like it”. I’m sure there were other reasons, that may or may not have had merit, but I doubt you’re reasoning.

  161. 161
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    The president of the united states isn’t Caligula, he can’t just order people murdered because he feels like it.

    Yep, Obama blew up a guy living in an al-Qaeda encampment who was giving material support to terrorists with money and training just because, y’know, he felt like it. There’s no possible logical reason for killing a known terrorist who participated in multiple plots, after all, so it must have been because Obama just felt like killing a guy that day.

  162. 162
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Oh, and I’ll just go ahead and say it: fuck al-Awlaki. I’m glad he’s dead, and I don’t fucking care that he didn’t get a trial first.

    Finally. Some honesty from the compulsive pathological liar Mnemosyne.

    You finally came clean and admitted it: you’re an authoritarian bootlicker and you don’t give a shit about the rule of law.

    Well, now that we know where you’re coming from, you can go back to genuflecting before your life-size picture of Mussolini. That pretty much does it for you, kiddo.

    You seem not to realize that conspiring to commit a crime is, you know, an actual fucking crime, not just “free speech”…

    Great. If what Al-Awlaki did is a crime under U.S. law, there’s a remedy for that:

    It’s called a “trial.”

    If someone commits a crime in America, the government has a way of dealing with that. They arrest the guy, charge him with a crime, arraign him, put him on trial and show a jury the evidence, and then let 12 of his fellow citizens vote on his guilt or innocence.

    You’re so stupid and so ignorant, Mnemosyne, that you don’t realize you just admitted my entire argument is correct.

    If Al-Awlaki actually did commit a crime, why didn’t the U.S. government extradite him and put him on trial?

    By using the word “crime” you instantly and irrevocably admitted that every single point I’ve been making is correct. A crime is a violation of the law. When a U.S. citizen commits a crime, the government has a legal process for dealing that, and it’s called a trial.

    Game over, Mnemosyne. You just conceded every point I’ve made with your response.

  163. 163
    gaz says:

    @mclaren: I’m still waiting on your suggestion as to what we should do? Are you suggesting pitchforks? (i’ve been there) voting for romney? (stupid) not voting? (equally stupid).

    Do you even know the function of the supreme court? Do you know how appointments work? If you do, then you know your equivalency (of Obama and Romney) is flat out false on it’s face. IF FOR NO OTHER REASON than SCOTUS appointments. Or are you going to sit there and tell me with a straight face that there is no daylight between Sotomeyer and Thomas, for example?

    It doesn’t matter. All you’ve done so far, other than demonstrate your basic lack of understanding of American history, and our electoral process is bitch, moan, bitch some more, and self-aggrandize.

    Please clean up the thread when you are done jerking off

  164. 164
    Mnemosyne says:

    You just cannot…stand…to admit…that Barack Obama is a constitutional law professor who is now ordering American citizens murdered without trial or even charging with having committed a crime, and there’s something horribly, terribly wrong about that.

    You think it’s wrong to kill admitted terrorists who are actively working and living with terrorist groups. I guess we should have walked up to the encampment and said, “Oh, pretty please, Mr. al-Awlaki, would you mind coming back to the United States with us so you can stand trial on multiple terrorism and murder charges? We’ll give you cookies if you do!”

    Al-Awlaki had plenty of time to turn himself in, but he chose not to. He chose to live in an armed camp where he couldn’t be arrested. And you’re shocked and horrified that OMG he got himself killed?

  165. 165
    Cassidy says:

    @mclaren: Shorter Mclaren:

    Man in Black: All right. Where is the poison? The battle of wits has begun. It ends when you decide and we both drink, and find out who is right… and who is dead.

    Vizzini: But it’s so simple. All I have to do is divine from what I know of you: are you the sort of man who would put the poison into his own goblet or his enemy’s? Now, a clever man would put the poison into his own goblet, because he would know that only a great fool would reach for what he was given. I am not a great fool, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you. But you must have known I was not a great fool, you would have counted on it, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of me.

    Man in Black: You’ve made your decision then?

    Vizzini: Not remotely. Because iocane comes from Australia, as everyone knows, and Australia is entirely peopled with criminals, and criminals are used to having people not trust them, as you are not trusted by me, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you.

    Man in Black: Truly, you have a dizzying intellect.

    Vizzini: Wait till I get going! Now, where was I?

    Man in Black: Australia.

    Vizzini: Yes, Australia. And you must have suspected I would have known the powder’s origin, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of me.

    Man in Black: You’re just stalling now.

    Vizzini: You’d like to think that, wouldn’t you? You’ve beaten my giant, which means you’re exceptionally strong, so you could’ve put the poison in your own goblet, trusting on your strength to save you, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you. But, you’ve also bested my Spaniard, which means you must have studied, and in studying you must have learned that man is mortal, so you would have put the poison as far from yourself as possible, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of me.

    Man in Black: You’re trying to trick me into giving away something. It won’t work.

    Vizzini: IT HAS WORKED! YOU’VE GIVEN EVERYTHING AWAY! I KNOW WHERE THE POISON IS!

    Man in Black: Then make your choice.

    Vizzini: I will, and I choose – What in the world can that be?
    Man in Black: [Vizzini gestures up and away from the table. Roberts looks. Vizzini swaps the goblets]

    Man in Black: What? Where? I don’t see anything.

    Vizzini: Well, I- I could have sworn I saw something. No matter. First, let’s drink. Me from my glass, and you from yours.

    Man in Black, Vizzini: [Vizzini and the Man in Black drink]

    Man in Black: You guessed wrong.

    Vizzini: You only think I guessed wrong! That’s what’s so funny! I switched glasses when your back was turned! Ha ha! You fool! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders – The most famous of which is “never get involved in a land war in Asia” – but only slightly less well-known is this: “Never go against a Sicilian when death is on the line”! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha…
    Vizzini: [Vizzini stops suddenly, his smile frozen on his face and falls to the ground dead]

    Buttercup: And to think, all that time it was your cup that was poisoned.

    Man in Black: They were both poisoned. I spent the last few years building up an immunity to iocane powder.

    Okay, not really shorter, but much more amusing.

  166. 166
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @Cassidy: That’s just about my all-time favorite movie.

  167. 167
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Obama blew up a guy living in an al-Qaeda encampment who was giving material support to terrorists with money and training just because, y’know, he felt like it. There’s no possible logical reason for killing a known terrorist who participated in multiple plots…

    Where’s the evidence for that?

    The government hasn’t released a shred of evidence to show that anything you’ve said is true.

    And we’ve heard this kind of horseshit before from the U.S. government, lots and lots of allegations with zero substance behind them. Steven Hatfill was supposedly the anthrax mailer, but that turned out to be horseshit.

    Time and again we hear all sorts of dire dark claims about people made by the government, but until they show us the evidence we shouldn’t believe a word of it.

    And you know why?

    Two words:

    SADDAM.

    WMDS.

    Boy, are you ever out of your depth, Mnemosyne. You’re not just a hopeless authoritarian bootlicker, you’re a gullible dupe who learned nothing from the phony bogus claims Eisenhower made about the Gary Francis Powers incident to the phony bogus claims Kennedy made about the Cuban Missile Crisis (turns out JFK started it all by placing short-range ballistic missiles in Turkey) and the phony bogus claims LBJ made about the Gulf of Tonkin and the phony bogus claims Nixon continually made about the war in Vietnam and the phony bogus claims Reagan made about the “war” in Grenada and the Contras in Nicaragua and the phony bogus claims Dubya made about Iraq leading up the Iraq War in 2003.

    Wow. Talk about someone without a clue…

    You know, once we slide into a state of affairs where guilt = unsupported accusation, we’ve regressed to the stage of the Salem Witch Trials.

    Enjoy your witch-burning, Mnemosyne.

  168. 168
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    If Al-Awlaki actually did commit a crime, why didn’t the U.S. government extradite him and put him on trial?

    Because we don’t have an extradition treaty with Yemen (which al-Awlaki knew full well) and could not legally extradite him.

    I’m surprised you didn’t know a fact as basic as that one when you kept calling for al-Awlaki to be extradited.

    So, now that you know that it was legally impossible to extradite al-Awlaki, what was your preferred solution?

  169. 169
    Yutsano says:

    @mclaren:

    Judicial review existed, it simply wasn’t codified in law.

    LOLWUT? Where did you pull that bullshit out of? Until the creation of the Supreme Court there were no final judicial reviews in any country in the world. That’s what made Marbury vs Madison so radical and controversial at the time. Madison even threatened to ignore it except he lacked the political backing to do so.

  170. 170
    OzoneR says:

    You just cannot…stand…to admit…that Barack Obama is a constitutional law professor who is now ordering American citizens murdered without trial or even charging with having committed a crime, and there’s something horribly, terribly wrong about that.

    Al-Awaki was in fact charged by the Yemeni government.

  171. 171
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    Where’s the evidence for that?

    That information is cunningly hidden in the links I provided to you. Follow them before you start spouting off and maybe you’d learn something.

  172. 172
    Cassidy says:

    This thread is so much more fun now that I imagine Vizzini talking whenever I read something by mclaren.

  173. 173
    OzoneR says:

    @mclaren:

    If Al-Awlaki actually did commit a crime, why didn’t the U.S. government extradite him and put him on trial?

    cause we don’t have an extradition treaty with Yemen, so the Yemeni government put him on trial and the judge ordered him captured “dead or alive” and we captured him…dead.

    All of it completely legal.

  174. 174
    Mnemosyne says:

    @OzoneR:

    Not just charged, but convicted of murder in absentia. But that doesn’t fit mclaren’s vision of al-Awlaki as a poor, persecuted cleric who wouldn’t even hurt a fly, so that just whooshes right past every time.

    ETA: Wait, sorry, al-Awlaki was only convicted of conspiracy for the murder. Clearly that proves that he was totally innocent because, as mclaren keeps insisting, conspiring to commit a crime is not a crime.

    ETA 2: Shorter mclaren: “Attempted murder? I mean, honestly, what is that? Do they give a Nobel Prize for attempted chemistry?”

  175. 175
    gaz says:

    @Mnemosyne: It’s only Rule of Law when mclaren finds it convenient. Besides, Yemen doesn’t matter, amirite? =)

  176. 176
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    You think it’s wrong to kill admitted terrorists

    Without a trial?

    FUCK YES.

    I don’t care what you accuse someone of, if that person is a U.S. citizen, you have to arrest them, charge them with a crime, and hold a trial.

    That’s how it works.

    Anybody can call anyone anything. That doesn’t give the government the right to kill the person who’s called scary names.

    Your advocacy of extrajudicial murder, Mnemosyne, makes you a terrorist and a clear danger to the United States. So let’s send a JSOC team of assassins out to kill you.

    See how it works?

    Anyone can accuse anyone of anything. If we start murdering people just because that person has been accused of something, that’s barbarism, we’ve thrown out the rule of law and now we’re back in the reign of Caligula.

    Moreover, Mnemosyne, you’ve exulted in the extrajudicial murder of Al-Awlaki, so now you’re an admitted terrorist.

    See how it work?

    Anyone can accuse anyone of anything. That was how the Grand Inquisition got started.

    [Al-Awlaki] are actively working and living with terrorist groups.

    Show us the evidence.

    There is none.

    Whenever the government refuses to show us the evidence, it’s always because the claims are bullshit and they’re not true.

    Incidentally, Mnemosyne is living and working with a terrorist group. She’s a clear and present danger to the United States, and she must be killed immediately.

    How do you know?

    No evidence. No proof. Someone just made the claim.

    That’s all.

    I guess we should have walked up to the encampment and said, “Oh, pretty please, Mr. al-Awlaki, would you mind coming back to the United States with us so you can stand trial on multiple terrorism and murder charges? We’ll give you cookies if you do!”

    Trial? On what charges? Nobody in America ever charged Al-Awlaki with the crimes of terrorism or murder. There was never any charge in court, never an indictiment, nothing.

    Where’s the evidence that Al-Awlaki had anything to do with “terrorism and murder”? All I see is some empty claims from various White House officials…just as empty as the claims from various White House officials in 2003 that Saddam had WMDS.

    Al-Awlaki had plenty of time to turn himself in, but he chose not to.

    Turn himself in. On what charge? Nobody in America even charged him with a crime, how could he “turn himself in”?

    He chose to live in an armed camp where he couldn’t be arrested.

    Arrested on what charge? Al-Awlaki was never charged with a crime!

    And you’re shocked and horrified that OMG he got himself killed?

    Al-Awlaki didn’t “get himself killed,” he was murdered without trial and without even being charged with a crime by the president of the United States.

    And yes, that shocks and horrifies me. It should shock and horrify you.

  177. 177
    OzoneR says:

    Without a trial?
    FUCK YES.

    We’ve already told you, he had a trial, judge ordered him captured dead or alive, will yous shut up now?

    Arrested on what charge? Al-Awlaki was never charged with a crime!

    Yes he was, in Yemen.

  178. 178
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    Show us the evidence.
    __
    There is none.

    Yep, I was pretty sure you were going to continue on your path of “al-Awlaki wuz framed!” He’s your own personal Mumia at this point, and you can’t admit he did any wrong.

    At all costs, you have to sustain your image of al-Awlaki as an innocent martyr to the US, because otherwise you would have to actually deal with difficult questions like what do you do when a US citizen is actively plotting mass murder of US citizens and there’s no way to arrest him?

    You can’t sustain your simplistic black-and-white view of the world if you admit that al-Awlaki worked for al Qaeda, so you just pretend it never happened.

  179. 179
    gaz says:

    @mclaren: He had a trial. And a conviction.

    So I didn’t even bother to read after your first sentence.

    Do you not understand english? I ask because this salient little fact has graced the screen numerous times since your last post.

    Maybe if you’d stop spending so much time being wrong all at once, and broke your posts down into bite-sized morsels of wrong, you’d have time in between to read the points where you’ve already been handed your ass. And maybe just maybe you’d stop repeating your wrongness over and over. I doubt it, but it really does make you look quite stupid, and so if I were you I’d cut it out and maybe go to bed in the interest of salvaging a little dignity – and hoping people forget about this thread. But I’m not you (a fact I’m thrilled by the more I read you, as it happens)

  180. 180
    Mnemosyne says:

    I would have a whole lot more respect for the civil libertarians who are upset about al-Awlaki if they pursued the “even Ted Bundy got a trial” line of argument instead of trying to pretend that al-Awlaki was a totally innocent guy who just happened to be living in an al Qaeda encampment in a country with no extradition treaty with the US.

    But I guess they don’t because then it’s a lot harder to scare naive people into thinking that Obama is totally going to send in drones to level their Oakland apartment building just like they killed al-Awlaki!

  181. 181
    gaz says:

    @Mnemosyne: What’s sad is I can argue his position on the Catholic Church and Civil Liberties better than he can, even though he’s wrong on both counts.

    * sigh * We need better trolls.

    Edit: I’d argue his position just for fun, but then he’d interject with the stupid, and ruin the whole thing.

  182. 182
    Mnemosyne says:

    @gaz:

    Me, I’ve got to head off to bed — it’s been a long week, and I really don’t have the patience to wait around for yet another mclaren rant where she ignores every fact and every argument so she can keep mourning her own personal Mumia.

    ‘Night, all.

  183. 183
    Ronzoni Rigatoni says:

    Ah, for the good olde days when everyone in gummint could rule on any law’s constitutionality. Jefferson’s ignoring the A & S laws was one such example, but even after Marbury v Madison, didn’t Ol’ Hickory, re some decision of the Supreme Court, opine. “Mr. Marshall has made his decision. Now let him enforce it.” ?

    Frankly, FDR’s court-packing idea has a lot of merit. Unfortunately, we’d prolly be saddled with about 40 million justices by now.

  184. 184
    Joseph Nobles says:

    Nit pick: after reading up on it, Jefferson never had the option to enforce the Alien and Sedition Acts. Since Congress could not agree on extending them, they expired the day before he was sworn in.

  185. 185
    Barry says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    “I’m afraid the “progressive Catholics” need to do what those disgusted with the hierarchy did some five centuries ago.

    Just fucking leave.”

    Or have a reformation – take the Church back. And by ‘take’, I mean ‘seize’.

  186. 186
    Quiddity says:

    @General Stuck: Stuck is 100% right. John Paul II, considering his policies, should have taken the name Pius XIII – which was the name of four reactionary popes over the last 200 years.

    If you read Garry Wills (Papal Sin) or John Cornwall (Hitler’s Pope) you will discover that there has been a fierce campaign by John Paul II and his successor to install bishops that toe the Vatican line and ignore the concerns of the lay constituency. This has been going on for decades and now we see the result: a very conservative Catholic organization at the level of bishop and above.

  187. 187
    Barry says:

    @kay: “It’s just sort of baffling that the abuse trial in Philadelphia isn’t getting their attention.

    It’s devastating. They’ve already had a priest plead and completely corraborate one of the witnesses, the judge ordered another priest to appear and authenticate the records of reports of abuse they found, so those are coming in, and one of the witnesses just implicated another priest who is now a Bishop in West Virginia.

    To say it’s heating up is an understatement.”

    What I’m hoping for, as criminal prosecutions move along, is that some of these accomplices to the coverup will be facing serious prison time, and will decide to spill the records as prosecution witnesses.

    Somebody who had the foresight to anticipate this scandal coming to light, and who kept copies of records for a couple of decades, as insurance.

  188. 188
    Barry says:

    @Foregone Conclusion: “The result is a more conservative base of priests, which means more conservative bishops, and eventually leads to the current College of Cardinals.”

    Except the base of priests doesn’t matter, except in the extreme cases. The Pope/Cardinals/Curia chooses the bishops, and can quite happily choose only from the rightmost 5% or 1%.

  189. 189
    Barry says:

    @burnspbesq:

    “@Villago Delenda Est:

    When I want your advice on matters of faith, I’ll ask for it.”

    From a person who’s not shy about giving the rest of us free advice.

  190. 190
    Barry says:

    @mclaren: “Don’t vote for Obama in November. Write in Elizabeth Warren.”

    The stupid! It burns!

  191. 191
    Foregone Conclusion says:

    @Barry:

    Yeah, but politics isn’t the be-all and end-all. Up to a certain level, it’s partly about competence, likeability in your local patch, all that stuff. At more senior levels (senior archbishop, cardinal) it’s about politics, true. But then again, what you’re seeing at the moment in the US isn’t Vatican driven (although Vatican approved) – it’s the council of American *bishops*. And frankly, if you’ve got a load of flaming liberals underneath you (hallo there, Order of Jesus and most nuns…), you’re going to watch your step.

    The idea of a perfect church hierarchy centred on Rome is propaganda. Remember that.

  192. 192
    Bill says:

    @mclaren: Hear! Hear!

  193. 193
    Catsy says:

    @AA+ Bonds: Good grief, when did you turn into such a tedious, one-note concern troll.

  194. 194
    Ben Franklin says:

    @gaz:

    My comment to you was not specifically, to you. It was a generalized message. You don’t need to apologize to me, but I thank you for your thoughtful response.

  195. 195
    Powkat says:

    AND one of them got a standing ovation from the pews when he said he wouldn’t distribute the petiton.

  196. 196
    Jean Marie says:

    @cathyx:
    I just heard on the news that Rome has decided that the nuns spend too much time on social justice and poverty and not enough on stopping abortion. Ending poverty and promoting social justice does fight abortion but….
    They have decided they need to have the priests provide closer supervision of the nuns.

    I don’t know if I can be Catholic any more. The priest are fucking the children and the church’s attention is on stopping the nuns from working against poverty and injustice. Are they so shallow that they don’t see how poverty is the root of all evil!!! Parents who can not feed their three year old, make heart broken decisions to sell their 12 year olds into slavery and pray they will find someone who will give them a decent life. The church doesn’t think this causes abortions!!!

  197. 197
    Qfwfq says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Anti-Catholic bigotry and anti-homosexual bigotry as well.

    The Catholic left, even in this country, is more left than the readership on this site.

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