National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

Distinctly Catholic

More on Intrinsic Evil


Professor David Cloutier has an important article up at Commonweal. Cloutier, who teaches theology at that notoriously leftie hangout Mt. St. Mary's in Emmitsburg (that's a joke people!), examines the use of the concept "intrinsic evil" in the current political debate. With greater erudition, learning and theological heft, Cloutier makes the point I have been making for some time - it is the wrong category and its misuse makes the bishops look like they don't know what they are talking about.

Lies that Boomerang


Last week, Mitt Romney said that "he read" somewhere that Jeep was going to send all of its Ohio jobs to China. Chrysler officials politely pointed out this was completely not the case. Then Romney launched an ad that repeats the same canard, only extending the warning to include GM. Corporate officials usually do not jump into partisan fights. After all, both Democrats and republicans buy cars. But, Romney's brazen lie required a response.

Religious Voting Breakdown


At the Washington Post, Mark Rozell looks at different religious groups and how they will likely be voting this year. Rozell is a professor of public policy at George Mason University and a senior fellow at the Institute for Policy research & Catholic Studies at CUA, where I am a visiting fellow. He has been looking at this kind of data for years and no one knows this turf better.

Religion & Politics & Race


The online journal of the Danforth Center, Religion & Politics, explores the often treacherous cultural fault lines between religion and politics, but if that were not enough, they have now posted an article by Max Perry Mueller that throws race into the already combustible mix.  Mueller is too kind to say that Andrew Sullivan's recent Daily Beast essay on this topic demonstrated - again!

Obstructionism: Will It Have Worked?


Ezra Klein’s article this morning focuses on an issue that has been bothering me for some time: The fact that GOP obstructionism these past four years appears to be working. Citing a string of newspapers endorsing Governor Romney on the hope that he will be able to work with Congress across party lines, Klein rightly wonders if the logic of these arguments will not actually embolden the intransigents in both parties.

Bp McElroy on Voting


Listening to bishops at election time can be dispiriting. So many seem intent on finding slightly opaque ways to tell their flock exactly how to vote, offering tendentious renderings of the moral calculi at work in voting, or invoking important moral categories like "intrinsic evil" and "prudential judgment" in ways that would not pass a Moral Theology exam in an undergraduate course.


Subscribe to Distinctly Catholic


NCR Email Alerts


In This Issue

October 21-November 3, 2016

  • Reformation's anniversary brings commemorations, reconsiderations
  • Picks further diversify College of Cardinals
  • Editorial: One-issue obsession imperils credibility
  • Special Section [Print Only]: SAINTS