Michael Gerson's tribute to Margaret Thatcher noted that she was no libertarian, that her commitment to free markets was tempered by her Methodism. Good for him for noting this. But, Gerson flinches before the task of wrestling with the real question here: Are the values the market requires, and which Thatcher championed, are they Christian values?
"I'm his daughter-in-law elect." We have all met her. And, as for the Mikado, the line "my morals have been declared particularly correct" is simply too splendid.
Okay, okay. I know the Holy Father does not want us to be "self-referential" but I must confess my disappointment that not a single person, in the comments or by email, picked up on one line in my review of George Weigel's new book. I wrote that Wiegel held up Pope John Paul II as the "model of a major modern papacy." I had in mind the great song from Gilbert & Sullivan's "Pirates of Penzance." Here is the song:
The inimitable Rocco Palmo looks at the selection of Boston's Cardinal Sean O'Malley, OFM Cap, to serve on the G-8 commission of cardinals to advise Pope Francis.
“The first thing we do….” Dick, the butcher, a forgettable role in a largely forgettable play by Shakespeare, gave voice to a sentiment that many people share, even if his remedy was excessive. There is something about the legal profession that makes it especially ripe for satire and worse.
As if the debate on gay marriage was not provocative enough! This article by Patrick Dineen I commend because it will make both the left and the right squirm. It echoes the point I have been making, namely, that we lost the fight for traditional marriage fifty years ago with the introduction of no-fault divorce laws, but Dineen goes further and points to the ways the ambient culture can be conservative in ways that accelerate the decline of traditional marriage. Interesting stuff.
Kirsten Powers, writing at USAToday, asks why the mainstream media is giving so little attention to the trial of Kermit Gosnell, an abortion doctor on trial for murder in Philadelphia. The story is horrific, just the kind of thing that normally catches the attention of CNN. But, the story also raises some troubling questions for the culture of death such as, why is it wrong to kill a child that has just emerged from the womb, but two seconds prior, killing the child is a constitutionally protected right?
Yesterday, the U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly to end a filibuster of a bipartisan bill that seeks to curb gun violence by expanding the requirements for background checks before purchasing a firearm. Everything that there is to love and hate about democracy is contained in that vote.
George Weigel’s newest book, Evangelical Catholicism: Deep Reform in the 21st-Century Church, is not without certain moments of lucidity, but fundamentally the text fails to deliver on what the title promises. Yes, he includes buckets of proposals for reform, but not all have anything to do with the Gospel and many are not exactly deep.