Monday, September 25, 2006
Personal Asides: The Best Papal Defense Carol Marin Scores Poor Mark Brown Bernie Stones Courage Bernard Lewis on Iraq.
Best Papal Defense.
After reading the text of Benedicts lecture that infuriated the Muslims, I find the best writing anywhere in defense of the Pope been not in the Catholic press and in no secular paper better than in The Wall Street Journal. Start with the column Global View on September 19 by Bret Stephens, a staffer, entitled Pope Provocateura sophisticated and theologically brilliant discourse that tops anything Papal apologists have disseminated either here or overseas. Excerpt: Lets play that again, since the rest of the media failed to noticePope Benedict suggests that the God of Mohammad is, or may seem to humans to be, `not even bound to truth and goodness. Who knows whether that really reflects a consensus view down the ages among Muslim theologiansBenedict makes his case about Islam by citing one scholar who cites another scholar who cites another
In fact, Benedict saves his sharpest barbs for non-Muslim targets: Protestantism which seems a `primordial form of faith; liberal theology which reduces Jesus to `the father of a humanitarian moral message; scientific rationalism, the ethics of which are `simply inadequate to answer the `specifically human questions about our origin and destiny; and what might be called Catholic pluralism, a culturally adaptive notion of the faith that Benedict denounces as `false and coarse. Then theres Daniel Henningers (deputy editorial page editor) in Friday and seemingly additional comments every day. One has to really hunker down to remember graduate theology to savor all these: remarkable for a secular economic newspaper. How different from the crass (youre just as guilty as they are) Martin Marty in the Tribune not to mention the Sun-Times all-purpose know-nothing, nominal Catholic, Richard Roeper, the aging marketing niche-directed youth columnist.
Aha, you thought I was going to crack her again, didnt you? No, Carol Marins column questioning the consistency of Mike Quigley, the Cook county commissioner supposedly the reformers reformer who sanctioned his top aide going to work for Todd Stroger although Quigley wont vote for Stroger, is superb. Quigley has been dining out on his reform credentials but uses the old liberal dodge of not voting for Peraica because Peraica is pro-life, just like the other purist liberal Forrest Claypool, who, though a good man, cant afford to offend the pro-abort sacred cows in his lefty party. Frankly, Peraica isnt even that much a pro-lifer refusing to do what George Dunne did and rescind the public abortion policy at County Hospital. Nevertheless Quigley-Claypool use that dodge to ingratiate themselves with their fellow lefties as the pretext for not voting for Todd Stroger.
If pro-abortion and gay rights meant as much to them as they say, theyd vote for Todd Stroger who supports both. Comon Quigley and Claypool: dont melt away into the woodwork. You cant have it both ways. Arent abortion and gay rights of such importance that you cant vote for Stroger when hes running against a pro-lifer and non-gay rights supporter? Where is Terry Cosgrove of Personal PAC, the whip-cracking disciplinarian of the pro-abort movement? Is Cosgrove going to let Quigley and Claypool get away with this wimpy evasionnot voting for Stroger? Kudos to Marin for pointing out Quigleys phony-baloney stratagem refusing to vote for Stroger but sending his top aide over to support him.
Poor Mark Brown.
Poor Mark Brown of the Sun-Times. He has decided to vote for Peraica but he has to make amends to the liberal constituency of the citys Democratic newspaper of record. Honest, hes a liberal Democrat. Honest, hes for abortion rights. Honest to God hes for gay rights. But hes going to vote for Peraica anyhow because, well, er, Peraica cant get his terrible social conservatism through the County Board. Honest. He cant. Of course he cant. Dont get me wrong: Im still a liberal Democrat; honest to God I am. Let me count the ways! Oh shut up, Mark. You wont lose your lefty credentials; stop worrying. Gawd. What a slavish ideological sycophant.
Bernie Stones Courage.
Understand, I dont know whether or not the late Fred Roti was a crook or notbut thats immaterial: I have a tremendous respect for Alderman Bernie Stone who defended him last night on my radio show saying that the FBI waited until Roti was dead before they listed him as a crime figure. Stone is one of those rare, rare politicians who has the courage to stand by his friends and he said he loved Roti no matter what the prevailing winds of political correctness ordain. Anyone else would sink the dagger into the corpse and say the FBI may be right etc. Not Stone. He knew Roti for a long time and denounced any thought that he was involved except for association with the name. I like that. How different that is from the twisting and turning of Stones colleague in the 49th picking up the juicy phony populist campaign for his own self-aggrandizement. Although I will say that Joe Moore is welcome on my show not because I agree with him but because he is a good guest.
What you want to do is to subscribe to Imprimis the free absolutely free newsletter from Hillsdale College. Costs you nothing. The latest issue describes a lecture given by profound and unexcelled Middle East expert, 90-year-old Bernard Lewis. Since you can get it free, I wont bother summarizing it. If you want me to, just say the word and I will. As for now, its late and I have to go to bed. Goodnight all.