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Chesterton Must Be an Anti-Christian Socialist!

February 13, 2010

RealCatholicTV continues to present itself as judge and jury to the Bishops. Michael Voris continues to use the same fallacious argumentation over and over again: guilt by association. Is anyone really surprised?

So we are to judge people by their friends? I can only imagine the kind of videos which would have been made about G.K. Chesterton.He’s friends with Fabians! He rejects capitalism! He gets together with George Bernard Shaw! He even says he agrees with Shaw! And that’s just one side of Chesterton. Look to his close bonds with H.G. Wells. Wells is famous for his attack on Catholicism with his Crux Ansata. Wells even said he wanted to bomb Rome — and with it, the Vatican! And this is Chesterton’s friend?! And Chesterton — he tells us Wells is one of the most brilliant of men of our age!  Why does anyone listen to him? With friends like Wells and Shaw, we know Chesterton is a closet socialist.

And if you thought I was wrong, why doesn’t he respond to me? This proves he knows I am right!

Anyone see the flaw yet?

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37 Comments
  1. February 13, 2010 6:53 am

    Henry, embrace The Vortex!!

    • February 13, 2010 7:13 am

      WJ

      If it was merely the Vortex, I would be silent for I would know people saw how silly it was. But what is being reported there is spread through the internet Catholic blogs, causing a kind of hostile reaction to the bishops and the USCCB. The arguments used, as I point out, would lead to a condemnation of many — like Chesterton. Or Pope Benedict (indeed, these exposes remind me of the kind I’ve seen anti-Catholics do on Benedict).

  2. Steve permalink
    February 13, 2010 7:31 am

    Did Chesterton ever give money to groups that promote homosexual marriage or abortion like the Bishop’s Conference does? This isn’t just guilt by association. This is active engagement.

    On the other hand, there are plenty of other non-anti-catholic organizations that the Bishop’s Conference could give to, yet they continue to choose to give to anti-catholic orgs. That does say something.

    • February 13, 2010 7:57 am

      Steve

      Your argument ignores the reality of the world and of how associations of any kind work. I’ve heard no call to attack Catholics who gave money to the GOP despite the fact that the GOP themselves funded abortion! Why is it? It’s the same question with taxes. Is it immoral to give taxes and be a part of the United States knowing the evil the United States funds in the world? Association does not necessarily implicate people as being guilty of formal cooperation of evil this way. That’s the issue. Equivocation of various levels of cooperation of evil. And the presentation of these groups are malicious and false — while they might not be Catholic, the point is that Catholics can and will work with non-Catholics to do good. Even if the non-Catholics also do evil. Jesus helped the Roman Centurion. Does that make him an advocate of Roman tyranny?

      And I’m sure GK Chesterton bought books by Wells and Shaw. So he was funding people who were attacking the Church.

  3. Steve permalink
    February 13, 2010 7:31 am

    Sorry ’bout the italics. Bad tag…

  4. Steve permalink
    February 13, 2010 8:29 am

    Henry,

    Given the distrust that already exists, whether justified or not, especially in the light of years of open and perceived closet decent of clergy, religious and some bishops, the sexual abuse scandal, etc., these charges will stick and will only further the distrust. If the bishops are truly giving to these groups because they do the most Catholic good that no other otherwise faithful group can or will do, then the bishops have a responsibility to make a good case to the faithful. Because honestly, it seems like they’re, once again, trying to sweep any questions under the rug.

    • February 13, 2010 8:45 am

      Steve

      If anyone wants to follow the culture of death’s hermeneutic of distrust and use that as an excuse to distance themselves from the Church, to promote scandal as a means of ignoring their own sin, and their own association with sin, I can’t stop them. But I can only point out the logic used could and would be used to condemn many — including Jesus. “What? He gave money and authority to the thief, Judas! How dare he?! Why should I listen to him, especially when I see him so friendly with our oppressors.” See how it works?

      And yet I wonder how many people complaining about the USCCB do anything which directly affects their own association and cooperation with evil. Do they check to see if their insurance company funds abortion? Do they stop their insurance of it does? Do they check to see every value they believe in is taught at the university their kids go to? Do they stop them from going to a university if the university requires classes in diversity which promote homosexual marriage? Do they pay such universities? It’s always easy to point to the association of another which is in the real world, which gets dirty. This is the point of Vladimir Solovyov (from http://evans-experientialism.freewebspace.com/soloviev.htm)

      The Russian legend of St. Nicolas and St. Cassian, its application to the two separated Churches.

      A popular Russian legend tells how St. Nicolas and St. Cassian were upon a visit to the earth. On their journey they met a poor peasant who had got his wagon, with a load of hay upon it, stuck in the mud and was making fruitless efforts to get his horses on.

      ‘Let’s go and give the good fellow a hand,’ said St. Nicolas.

      ‘Not I; I’m keeping out of it,’ replied St. Cassian, ‘I don’t want to get my coat dirty.’

      ‘Well, wait for me,’ said St. Nicolas, ‘or go on without me if you like,’ and plunging without hesitation into the mud he vigorously assisted the peasant in dragging his wagon out of the rut.

      When he had finished the job and caught his companion up, he was all covered in filth; his coat was torn and soiled and looked like a beggar’s rags. St. Peter was amazed to see him arrive at the gate of Paradise in this condition.

      ‘I say! Who ever got you into that state?’ he asked. St. Nicolas told his story.

      ‘And what about you?’ asked St. Peter, turning to St. Cassian. ‘Weren’t you with him in this encounter?’

      ‘Yes, but I don’t meddle in things that are no concern of mine, and I was especially anxious not to get my beautiful clean coat dirty.’

      ‘Very well,’ said St. Peter, ‘you, St. Nicolas, because you were not afraid of getting dirty in helping your neighbor out of a difficulty, shall for the future have two feasts a year, and you shall be reckoned the greatest of saints after me by all the peasants of holy Russia. And you, St. Cassian, must be content with having a nice clean coat; you shall have your feastday in leap-year only, once every four years.’

      We may well forgive St. Cassian for his dislike of manual labor and the mud of the highroad. But he would be quite wrong to condemn his companion for having a different idea of the duties of saints’ towards mankind. We may like St. Cassian’s clean and spotless clothes, but since our wagon is still deep in the mud, St. Nicolas is the one we really need, the stout-hearted saint who is always ready to get to work and help us.

      The Western Church, faithful to the apostolic mission, has not been afraid to plunge into the mire of history. After having been for centuries the only element of moral order and intellectual culture among the barbarous peoples of Europe, it undertook the task not only of the spiritual education of these peoples of independent spirit and uncivilized instincts but also of their material government.

      In devoting itself to this arduous task the Papacy, like St. Nicolas in the legend, thought not so much of the cleanliness of its own appearance as of the urgent needs of mankind. The Eastern Church, on the other hand, with its solitary asceticism and its contemplative mysticism, its withdrawal from political life and from all the social problems which concern mankind as a whole, thought chiefly, like St. Cassian, of reaching Paradise without a single stain on its clothing.

      The Western Church aimed at employing all its powers, divine and human, for the attainment of a universal goal; the Eastern Church was only concerned with the preservation of its purity. There is the chief point of difference and the fundamental cause of the schism between the two Churches.

      It is a question of a different ideal of the religious life itself. The religious ideal of the separated Christian East is not false; it is incomplete. In Eastern Christendom for the last thousand years religion has been identified with personal piety (1), and prayer has been regarded as the one and only religious activity.

      The Western Church, without disparaging individual piety as the true germ of all religion, seeks the development of this germ and its blossoming into a social activity organized for the glory of God and the universal good of mankind. The Eastern prays, the Western prays and labors. Which of the two is right?

      Jesus Christ founded His visible Church not merely to meditate on heaven, but also to labor upon earth and to withstand the gates of hell. He did not send His apostles into the solitude of the desert, but into the world to conquer it and subject it to the Kingdom which is not of this world, and He enjoined upon them not only the innocence of doves but also the wisdom of serpents. If it is merely a question of preserving the purity of the Christian soul, what is the purpose of all the Church’s social organization and of all those sovereign and absolute powers with which Christ has armed her in giving her final authority to bind and to loose on earth as well as in heaven?

      The monks of the holy mountain of Athos, true representatives of the isolated Eastern Church, have for centuries spent all their energies in prayer and the contemplation of the uncreated light of Tabor (2). They are perfectly right; prayer and the contemplation of uncreated things are essential to the Christian life.

      But can we allow that this occupation of the soul constitutes the whole Christian life?–or that is what we must do if we try to put the Orthodox East, with its peculiar character and special religious tendencies, in the place of the Universal Church. We have in the East a Church at prayer, but where among us is the Church in action, asserting itself as a spiritual force absolutely independent of the powers of this world?

      Where in the East is the Church of the living God, the Church which in every generation legislates for mankind, which establishes and develops the formulation of eternal truth with which to counteract the continually changing formulas of error? Where is the Church which labors to re-mould the whole social life of the nations in accordance with the Christian ideal, and to guide them towards the supreme goal of Creation–free and perfect union with the Creator?

      The advocates of an exclusive asceticism should remember that the perfect Man spent only forty days in the wilderness; those who contemplate the light of Tabor should not forget that that light appeared only once in the earthly life of Christ, Who proved by His own example that true prayer and true contemplation are simply a foundation for the life of action.

      If this great Church, which for centuries has done nothing but pray, has not prayed in vain, she must show herself a living Church, acting, struggling, victorious. But we ourselves must will that it be so. We must above all recognize the insufficiency of our traditional religious ideal, and make a sincere attempt to realize a more complete conception of Christianity. There is no need to invent or create anything new for this purpose. We merely have to restore to our religion its Catholic or universal character by recognizing our oneness with the active part of the Christian world, with the West centralized and organized for a universal activity and possessing all that we lack.

      We are not asked to change our nature as Easterns or to repudiate the specific character of our religious genius.

      We have only to recognize unreservedly the elementary truth that we of the East are but a part of the Universal Church, a part moreover which has not its center within itself, and that therefore it behooves us to restore the link between our individual forces upon the circumference and the great universal center which Providence has placed in the West. There is no question of suppressing our religious and moral individuality but rather of crowning it and inspiring it with a universal and progressive life.

      The whole of our duty to ourselves consists simply in recognizing ourselves for what we are in reality, an organic part of the great body of Christendom, and in affirming our spiritual solidarity with our Western brethren. This moral act of justice and charity would be in itself an immense step forward on our part and the essential condition of all further advance.

      St. Cassian need not become a different person or cease to care about keeping his clothes spotless. He must simply recognize that his comrade has certain important qualities which he himself lacks, and instead of sulking at this energetic worker he must frankly accept him as his companion and guide on the earthly voyage that still lies before them.

      And finally, I think Tolkien on scandal needs to be remembered:

      “‘Scandal’ at most is an occassion of temptation — as indecency is to lust, which it does not make about arouses. It is convenient because it turns our eyes away from ourselves and our faults to find a scape-goat. But the act of will of faith is not a single moment of final decision: it is a permanent indefinitely repeated act > state which must go on — so we pray for ‘final perseverance.’ The temptation to ‘unbelief’ (which really means rejection of Our Lord and His claims) is always there within us. Part of us longs to find an excuse for it outside us. The stronger the inner temptation the more readily and severely shall we be ‘scandalized’ by others. I think I am as sensitive as you (or any other Christian) to the ‘scandals’, both of clergy and laity. I have suffered grievously in my life from stupid, tired, dimmed, and even bad priests; but I now know enough about myself to be aware that I should not leave the Church (which for some would mean leaving the allegiance of Our Lord) for any such reason: I should leave because I did not believe, and should not believe any more, even if I had never met any one in orders who was not both wise and saintly.”

      — Letter 250, to Michael Tolkien. In The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien. ed. Humphrey Carpenter (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1981).

  5. Steve permalink
    February 13, 2010 8:36 am

    Make that “dissent”.

  6. Steve permalink
    February 13, 2010 9:04 am

    If people want to follow the culture of death’s hermeneutic of distrust and use that as an excuse to distance ourselves from the Church, to promote scandal as a means of ignoring our own sin, and our own association with sin, I can’t stop them.

    One, are you saying that we should never question anything coming from the Bishops? Are we really to blindly trust despite a record of not being trustworthy? Really? Two, you’re pre-judging people who question the motives of the bishops. How do you know that they’re only asking these questions “as a means of ignoring our own sin”? That kind of blanket nonsense doesn’t help anything.

    And yet I wonder how many people complaining about the USCCB do anything which directly affects their own association and cooperation with evil.

    Deflection. If the USCCB would either cease their cooperation with anti-Catholic organizations, or explain why these associations do the most Catholic good, then there wouldn’t be anything to complain about. The Bishops as the shepherds of their flocks, should be the example to follow – not an excuse for the faithful to cooperate with evil.

    • February 13, 2010 9:15 am

      One, are you saying that we should never question anything coming from the Bishops? Are we really to blindly trust despite a record of not being trustworthy?

      I’m saying we must remember their office and treat them with more respect and not gossip mongering. And we must be pure in our questioning and not just make it something like “they work with Democrats! Evil!” We are expected to give them our respect due to office, and that should be how we conduct our questions. And we must give them some benefit because of it, even if there are issues which, from time to time, must be raised up. But we must be careful. Gossips always have excuses for their sin.

      Two, you’re pre-judging people who question the motives of the bishops. How do you know that they’re only asking these questions “as a means of ignoring our own sin”? That kind of blanket nonsense doesn’t help anything.

      Prejudging the people? No, I am responding to their methodology. And the arguments are fallacious throughout, which I have expressed in several posts within the last couple weeks. So, are you sure they are paying for the internet through a company which has no connection to evil (pornography?) Are you sure they have not given money to the GOP and in doing so, put themselves in association for all the evil the GOP has supported? Why is it only Democrats and their evils which count? Sorry, the problem is they are not thinking in the real world. If you did, you will find you can always find cooperation with evil going on in some level; and they are deflating the levels of cooperation for polemics. Nothing else.

      And yet I wonder how many people complaining about the USCCB do anything which directly affects their own association and cooperation with evil.

      Deflection. If the USCCB would either cease their cooperation with anti-Catholic organizations, or explain why these associations do the most Catholic good, then there wouldn’t be anything to complain about.

      “If Jesus would only cease cooperation with Samaritans and sinners like Judas….” again, Jesus shows us the real world. And something which this kind of scandal mongering forgets. It is always easy to point fingers when it is all about cooperation with evil. Many non-Christians point that as a reason to reject Jesus. Same kinds of arguments. Same kinds of associations.

  7. Steve permalink
    February 13, 2010 9:45 am

    And we must be pure in our questioning and not just make it something like “they work with Democrats! Evil!”

    There is some of that, yes. But it isn’t only that. Some of these questions are legitimate. You seem to be dismissing all of the questions because some of them are flippant. Why?

    We are expected to give them our respect due to office, and that should be how we conduct our questions.

    Agreed. But the questions do need to be asked. And answered.

    So, are you sure they are paying for the internet through a company which has no connection to evil (pornography?)… not given money to the GOP

    …or the Democrat party.

    It’s still a deflection. Even if all of the faithful are guilty, it still doesn’t excuse the guilt of the Bishops (if they are indeed guilty.) It isn’t wrong for the faulty laity to ask for fidelity from those who are supposed to be leading them into virtue. As I said, especially in the light of modern and recent indiscretions, the Bishops have the duty and responsibility of regaining the moral trust of the faithful by being faithful stewards of their office. They need to be open, and they need to answer the questions.

    “If Jesus would only cease cooperation with Samaritans and sinners like Judas….”

    Jesus didn’t support the heresies of the Samaritans or the thievery of Judas. The Bishops, on the other hand, are at least giving the appearance of supporting pro-abortion, pro-homosexuality, etc., – anti-Catholic – groups by giving them (alot) of money and by hiring promoters of anti-catholisism when it *surely* isn’t necessary. If there is a good reason for it, fine. They need to make the case -a good case- if they want to regain the trust of the faithful.

    • February 13, 2010 9:53 am

      Jesus didn’t support the heresies of the Samaritans or the thievery of Judas. The Bishops, on the other hand, are at least giving the appearance of supporting…

      Jesus gave the appearance of siding with sin, and that is exactly the criticism given to him: he supports sinners, he is of the devil, etc. Again, using the “appears of supporting” goes with Jesus. And he did give Judas a lot of money and he seemed to give positive reinforcement to those in the occupying forces.

    • February 13, 2010 10:03 am

      Steve

      BTW, yes, “and the Democrat party.” But the point is — in any party. In politics. In history. That’s the fact of secular life. And the Church has had a long history of cooperation with evil for the promotion of some good. And it has not always been something to condemn — like the Pope meeting with Attila or even Alexander Nevsky in Rus working with the Tatars. This is the real world. We must avoid conflating levels of cooperation of evil. And we must remember gossip is a sin, even if it is done for “good.”

  8. Steve permalink
    February 13, 2010 10:08 am

    Jesus didn’t try to cover up a priest sex abuse scandal, or openly dissent the teachings of scripture and thereby give the faithful good reason to distrust him. The Bishop’s unfaithfulness hasn’t merely been an appearance, but Jesus’ unfaithfulness was.

    • February 13, 2010 10:21 am

      Jesus didn’t try to cover up a priest sex abuse scandal, or openly dissent the teachings of scripture and thereby give the faithful good reason to distrust him.

      Er, wasn’t one of the charges is that he changed the law? That he said people could ignore the typical understanding of scripture such as the law about the sabbath or stoning adulterers? The issue is that he indeed gave appearance, and the Pharisees of his day used the same kind of tactics as we see today.

      Now, you are making claims about the USCCB; let’s start with the claim they are openly dissenting from Scripture. Prove it. Again, this level speech is poor. Prove such claims. It’s just easy to gossip and say “well, it’s for the good, since they are bad.” Gossips generally think they are in the right for that reason.

  9. David Nickol permalink
    February 13, 2010 11:08 am

    It is fascinating to me that the USCCB is so corrupt that it supports both the conservative Republican agenda and the liberal Democratic agenda (depending on whom you listen to). On the one hand, Cardinal George denounces New Ways Ministry,, and on the other, the USCCB funds pro-gay-rights and pro-same-sex-marriage organizations.

    “Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste, and no town or house divided against itself will stand.”

    Down with the bishops — the successors to the Apostles!

  10. phosphorious permalink
    February 13, 2010 11:15 am

    I only watched about 10 seconds or so. . .

    Was this guy offended by the fact that the conference of bishops was acting in a . . . partisan manner?

    The horrors!

  11. Steve permalink
    February 13, 2010 11:33 am

    The issue is that he indeed gave appearance

    The issue is what is true, and leadership and trust in the shepherds of the church. The fact is that the Bishops have screwed things up in the recent past and it’s still fresh in everyone’s memory. The Bishops need to make better decisions and be open to scrutiny in order to regain trust. They should also expect a certain level of mistrust given the indiscretions.

    The USCCB, to my knowledge, hasn’t openly dissented as a group. That wasn’t my point. I didn’t mean to portray that. Some individual Bishops have openly dissented however, which has indeed lent to the current distrust of many of them, especially along side of occurrences like the sex abuse scandal and the current issue of supporting anti-catholic groups. Brushing it under the rug is only giving credence to the criticisms.

    • February 13, 2010 11:36 am

      Steve

      If you are going to make open attacks on the USCCB and make up accusations, you need to back them up; right now, our answer is “they really haven’t dissented as a group” and “people just know they did mistakes in the past” so it is ok to charge them with all kinds of accusations? Seriously, if you don’t back up your claims with evidence and just continue with this kind of response, for the good of your soul, I won’t allow more of your comments through. Detraction through gossip is not a good thing. And I think you might need to consider that before anything else.

  12. David Nickol permalink
    February 13, 2010 12:05 pm

    Someone should tip off The New York Times and other notoriously anti-Catholic members of the godless mainstream media about this terrible scandal. On the other hand, I suppose it is more effective to try to tear down the Catholic Church from within.

    The barrage of accusations is too large to deal with in its entirety, but here is one article about the accusations against John Carr titled Bishops call charges against USCCB official false, ridiculous. An excerpt:

    WASHINGTON (CNS) — Bishops who work closely with John Carr, who oversees the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, say new claims against him and the agency are false and “totally ridiculous.”

    Bishops William F. Murphy of Rockville Centre, N.Y., and Roger P. Morin of Biloxi, Miss., spoke with Catholic News Service Feb. 3 about recent allegations of “a systemic pattern of cooperation with evil” by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops because of Carr’s past involvement with the Center for Community Change.

    “I’m concerned about these attacks on John Carr and I know they are false and I think they are even calumnious,” said Bishop Murphy, who chairs the USCCB Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, by telephone to CNS. “I am taking this to be a very sad, sad commentary on the honesty of some people in these pressure groups.” . . .

    I remember when I was a kid my father brought home pamphlets from some major right-wing organization that identified all the communists and communist sympathizers in the United States. I remember Lucille Ball was on the list (maybe for her red hair), and Ed Sullivan (he did have Russian ballet dancers on the show), along with just about every famous person you could think of. RealCatholicTV reminds me of the witch hunters of the 1950s.

    I just found this on Wikipedia:

    In 1953, Ball was subpoenaed by the House Committee on Un-American Activities because she had registered to vote in the Communist party primary election in 1936 at her socialist grandfather’s insistence (per FBI FOIA-released documents in a declassified FBI file). Immediately before the filming of episode 68 (“The Girls Go Into Business”) of I Love Lucy, Arnaz, instead of his usual audience warm-up, told the audience about Lucy and her grandfather. Arnaz quipped: “The only thing red about Lucy is her hair, and even that’s not legitimate.” Then, he presented his wife and she received a standing ovation from the audience.

    • February 13, 2010 12:10 pm

      David

      What the criticism reminds me of is of the kind associated with a Chick Tract. It makes me wonder about many things- – though not about the Bishops.

  13. Blackadder permalink
    February 13, 2010 12:22 pm

    So if Nixon appointed a Commission who talked to a guy who once advocated mandatory abortion, would imputing that view to Nixon be guilt by association?

    • February 13, 2010 12:33 pm

      Blackadder

      Not at all. But if Nixon is promoting and has said he promotes population control through abortion, which he said and many times, then it is a different issue.

  14. Gabriel Austin permalink
    February 13, 2010 2:49 pm

    The issue is correctly stated as “does the USCCB represent all the bishops? some of the bishops? a majority? the squeaky wheel minority? the political bishops? what authority does the USCCB have? is it a consultative group meant to inform the bishops? can it [its bureaucrats] speak for the bishops?

    Underlying this is a sense that there can be a “consensus” on morality. Which is to say, a majority vote. It is not the USCCB which will get us into heaven, not the USCCB which is responsible for that chief task of bishops: it is each bishop in his diocese who will be called to account for his sheep.

  15. Frank permalink
    February 13, 2010 3:21 pm

    Voris is one pathetic piece of work. He couldn’t hack it in the seminary. He couldn’t hack it at some local Fox affiliate. His ‘catholic’ TV show on some dippy bulletin board channel disappeared for lack of sponsors. His ‘catholic’ radio show on some rightwing end of the dial station disappeared for lack of sponsors. Now he feeds his ego bashing and slashing on youtube. Where is this loser gonna show up next? Filene’s basement?

  16. Kurt permalink
    February 13, 2010 3:51 pm

    I proudly served on the Legislative Committee of the Leadership Conference during two separate periods of my worklife. It is an honorable organization and has included Catholics in its leadership since its founding.

    Charity requires me to assume those attacking it are grossly ill-informed, because the other possibility is that they are racists.

  17. David Nickol permalink
    February 13, 2010 6:05 pm

    Voris is one pathetic piece of work. He couldn’t hack it in the seminary. He couldn’t hack it at some local Fox affiliate.

    I couldn’t disagree more. It’s difficult to find unbiased information about him, but he seems to have had a successful career in broadcast journalism as a producer, reporter and CBS-affiliate anchor, winning several Emmy Awards. He comes across in these videos as polished, professional, with masculine good looks. If I didn’t think almost everything he said was right-wing paranoid nonsense, I would find him quite convincing. And no one should be criticized for not being able to “hack it” in the seminary.

  18. Frank permalink
    February 13, 2010 9:11 pm

    I couldn’t care less whether Voris or anyone else ‘hacked it’ in the seminary unless or until they set themselves up as judge, jury and hangman over the bishops. At that point the gap in stature becomes relevant. That would seem obvious–at least to me. If I’m having surgery, I want someone who finished medical school and the subsequent rigorous training required, as opposed to one who didn’t but likes to critique doctors on youtube. As to his glowing journalism career, I find it very strange that he would leave at at time when he would have been on the fast track. Authoritarian personalities like Voris tend not to get along well with bosses like station managers or bishops. I’ll certainly grant that the guy is comfortable in front of a camera but the “masculine good looks”? To me, he just looks odd. Guess I’m just an old meanie.

  19. Kevin permalink
    February 13, 2010 11:04 pm

    The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights promotes a distinctly pro-abortion point of view. How does a civil rights organization see promoting abortion as part of their mission?

    Catholic money should not be donated to any organization that promotes abortion as part of its mission.

  20. February 14, 2010 4:17 am

    Kevin

    While Chesterton would say things against eugenics, even would write against his friends like Shaw, it must be remembered his friends were some of its greatest promoters. And he bought their books, giving them money and the means to continue with such promotion of eugenics.

  21. Andy permalink
    February 14, 2010 1:27 pm

    That seems to be splitting hairs, Henry. A man choosing to be friends with those he disagrees with is quite different than an entire organization allying with and donating money to another that is against its first principles.

    In short, the entire parallel between Chesterton and the USCCB falls flat. Chesterton was a man, the USCCB is an organization. Yes, you CAN judge an organization by its allies.

    • February 14, 2010 1:35 pm

      Andy

      So the Catholic Church is to be judged for its historical alliances? The Church is evil and a work of the devil because it often has, through the people in it, made alliances with people who were known to do evil (as an example, MM presents this: http://vox-nova.com/2009/03/24/too-many-hands/ )? BTW, it is still valid; if the methodology involved for decrying one is “because of who they help with money,” then when Chesterton buys books by Shaw and Wells, he was indeed giving them monetary aid in their attacks on the Church. The fact is that the moral connection between a person and his actions is greater, because the connection is not so remote. Chesterton and Belloc even participated in events which were “under the auspices of the Fabian society.” The problem remains.

  22. David Nickol permalink
    February 14, 2010 3:03 pm

    A man choosing to be friends with those he disagrees with is quite different than an entire organization allying with and donating money to another that is against its first principles.

    I think there is an issue that hasn’t even been addressed, let alone settled, and that is what it means to be listed as a “coalition member” of LCCR. If you check out the list, you will find this in the introduction: “Here you will find a listing of the more than 200 national organizations that comprise the LCCR” [emphasis added]. It is not that the USCCB donates money to LCCR. The LCCR is a coalition, and the USCCB is part of it — or at least it is listed as part of it. (The last blast against the USCCB was for having a lesbian as an adviser, when in fact she had been gone for several years and had been sent as a delegate by her labor organization, not appointed by the USCCB.)

    As a coalition it seems reasonable that not all the coalition members support all the goals of the coalition. For example, exactly what do the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and the Epilepsy Foundation of America have in common? Or the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) and the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF)? Or the Secular Coalition for America and the National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S. (NCC)?

    Should the Catholic Church not ally itself with the NAACP when issues of racial justice come up because the NAACP has supported abortion rights? Exactly how “pure” does the USCCB have to be in order not to cause “scandal”?

    Buy the way, it’s interesting to note that the overall complaint about the USCCB is not exactly that it allegedly is supporting gay rights or abortion, but that it is allegedly supporting the “Democratic agenda.” So is this about religious issues, or politics?

  23. Kurt permalink
    February 15, 2010 11:54 am

    David, I have to correct you.

    My right-wing friends on occasion make big point that the USCCB is not a council that has actual authority but is a conference — i.e a gathering of conferees to discussion matter of possible mutual concern. Where it not for their hate-based bigotry and hackery, the right-wing would acknowledge the organization of the Leadership Conference. It began in the 1960s when civil rights legislation was before Congress so that the leading organizations concerned could exchange information and attempt to coordinate strategies. In that sense, it is not dissimilar the various right-wing weekly meetings the NRTLC and others participate in.

    The Conference has not worked on direct issues of abortion or gay marraige. It has opposed judical nominees of whom the consensus of the civil rights community is that they are unqualified. This consensus may contradict the consensus of the right-wing, that NRTL loyally follows.

    It is the consensus of the groups particpating in the Ledership Conference that people should not have their means of livihood taken away from them simply because they are gay.

  24. Kurt permalink
    February 15, 2010 11:57 am

    Voris ..with masculine good looks.

    Well, he is certainly more “butch” than Raymond Arroyo and Thomas Peters. :)

  25. David Nickol permalink
    February 15, 2010 1:57 pm

    It is the consensus of the groups particpating in the Ledership Conference that people should not have their means of livihood taken away from them simply because they are gay.

    This is not my understanding of the Catholic Church’s position, unless for “gay” you substitute “celibate homosexual person whose sexual orientation is kept secret.” Refer, for example, to Some Considerations Concerning the Response to Legislative Proposals on the Non-Discrimination of Homosexual Persons. If seems clear to me that LCCR supports precisely the kind of legislation that the CDF warns against. It seems clear, also, that the CDF would support the right of a landlord not to rent to a married same-sex couple and would also support discrimination against teachers and coaches known to be gay.

    I am, of course, on the side of LCCR instead of the CDF. It’s not surprising, though, that ultra-conservative Catholics would look askance at LCCR. What I do find rather surprising is what sounds like wholesale condemnation of the USCCB based on a handful of alleged “transgressions,” some of which have turned out to be based on erroneous information.

  26. Gerald A. Naus permalink
    February 16, 2010 5:33 pm

    The German metaphor for this is “A fart in the forest”

    “They keep changing their name” (they changed it once)

    “Critics demand” – translation: “My friends and I”

    A career on FoxNews can’t be too far away :-)

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