Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Tulsi Isn't Playing Hard to Get

Conservative sadbois like two things: hot moms and Middle Eastern despots.

Enter Tulsi Gabbard, the comely representative for Hawaii’s second congressional district. The single lock of gray hair tucked behind her ear and her array of red pants-suits give her an almost Palinesque allure. Her secret friendship with Bashar al-Assad and visceral hatred for the House of Saud brings us all back to our political puberty: hiding copies of The American Conservative under our beds, taking them out only when our parents weren’t home and fantasizing madly about the end of American Empire.

Knowing only that, we can hardly blame an aging fogey who finds himself crushing on Rep. Gabbard. Throw in the fact that she’s extremely eloquent, an active member of the US armed forces, a surfer chick, and — ha! Hold my brain; be still my wonkish heart.

That’s why I take it there’s been some sort of unspoken agreement in the center-right media. We all know there’s no chance of Tulsi actually winning, so we’re just going to let this lady-crush run its course.

[Read more at The Spectator USA]

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Francis Paves the Way for Francis II

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was roundly mocked last week for saying that Millennials are, in fact, the Greatest Generation. And rightly so. By and large, my generation is a waste of its fathers’ seed and a drain on their resources. Culturally, we’re vapid. Socially, we’re maladjusted. Spiritually, we’re lost. Politically, we’re just plain silly.

Had Ms. Ocasio-Cortez been speaking of Millennial Catholics, however, I might be inclined to agree with her.

Of course, most Millennials are “cafeteria Catholics” like our parents. We identify with the Church while rejecting crucial teachings on the Eucharist, sexuality, marriage, and the all-male priesthood. But there are unique signs of renewal among us that should give orthodox Catholics of any age reason to be hopeful.


Courageous young priests like Fr. Eddie Dwyer are offering their brave witness to the traditions of Holy Mother Church. Young men and women are flocking to traditional religious orders. From my own conversations with seminarians, I’d estimate that roughly one-third of those ordained in the last year are interested in celebrating the Tridentine Mass.



Political thinkers like Matthew Schmitz and Sohrab Ahmari are bringing Catholic social teaching into the American political debate. Three memoirists have offered moving, penetrating insights into the American experience: the hillbilly transplant J.D. Vance, the Iranian immigrant Ahmari, and the Irish son Michael Brendan Dougherty. All are Catholic, and two are converts.

Progressives in the Church have noticed this trend, too. Massimo Faggioli, a de facto spokesmen for the episcopal establishment, has warned about the rise of “neo-traditionalism” among young Catholics. Austen Ivereigh (another Vatican flak) has dismissed this phenomenon as “convert neurosis”, which is a particularly egregious bit of Bulverism. But at least he doesn’t bother denying that Millennials come to the Church out of concern, not for plastics in the ocean, but for the apostolic Faith.

Friday, August 30, 2019

Scrap the Jesuits and start over

Imagine what Church historians of the future will say about the Jesuits:

“The Society of Jesus was founded in 1540 by St. Ignatius of Loyola and played a crucial role in the Church’s efforts to extinguish the nascent Protestant heresy. Over the centuries, however, it became the stronghold of another heresy—Modernism—and was eventually suppressed on the orders of Pope Pius XIII. Remnants of the order persisted in the United States through the middle of the 21st century, mostly due to the value of the land upon which they had built college campuses. Then, in the year 2103, the Society’s seven remaining priests were collectively re-ordained in the Episcopal Church, briefly doubling the number of Episcopalian clerics.”

Harsh? Maybe. But what reason do we have to be optimistic about the Jesuits’ future in the Catholic Church?

Just last week, the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Fr. Arturo Sosa—he’s the chap in the mustaches, above—was upbraided by the International Association of Exorcists for calling Satan a“symbolic reality, not as a personal reality.”

The IAE pointed out to Fr. Sosa that the “real existence of the devil, as a personal subject who thinks and acts and has made the choice of rebellion against God, is a truth of faith that has always been part of Christian doctrine.”

“The finest trick of the devil is to persuade you that he does not exist,” as Charles Baudelaire quipped. Well, the leader of the world’s 16,000 Jesuits fell for it.

[Read more at Crisis.]

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Cardinal Pell is innocent. Those who persecute him are not

The boiling frog never marks that first millisecond, when the water in his pot becomes just a half-degree warmer. And so, Catholics living in America circa 2019 couldn’t possibly appreciate the magnitude of what happened this week in Australia. Yet I have no doubt my grandsons will.

Here are the facts. In December of 2018, Cardinal George Pell, the former Archbishop of Melbourne and Prefect of the Vatican’s Secretariat for the Economy, was found guilty of sexually abusing two choir boys in the 1990s. He appealed his conviction; on August 21st, a panel of judges voted 2 to 1 to uphold the sentence.

Beyond any shadow of a doubt, His Eminence is innocent. I mean, it is literally impossible that Cardinal Pell is guilty of the crime he’s accused of committing. The acts of abuse described by the prosecution are not only ridiculous: they’re physically impossible for any man to perform. There were no third-party witnesses to the assault, and not a shred of forensic evidence to prove his guilt. Every priest, altar boy, and chorister at the St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Melbourne testified that Pell was celebrating Mass at the time of the alleged attack.

But don’t take my word for it. Read the court documents. Read contemporary news reports. Hell: read any of the hundreds of anti-Pell screeds published over the last few years. Start with Louise Milligan’s book-length hitjob Cardinal. Notice how quickly you realize that things you’re reading just don’t seem to add up. You’ll find yourself going over the same paragraphs twice, three times. Your brain will start to itch. “I’m missing something,” you’ll say to yourself; “This doesn’t make any sense.”

In fact, you’re not missing anything. It doesn’t make sense. And that’s because Cardinal Pell is innocent. The allegations are bogus. Yet the Australian justice system, the Australian press, and most of the Australian public refuse to admit it. An innocent man—a holy, gentle, honest, compassionate man—will spend the next six years in prison. Then, he’ll spend the rest of his days on earth known as a violent pedophile.

Every fair-minded American, whatever their creed, should be outraged at the gross injustice that transpired in our sister-nation across the Pacific.

[Read more at Crisis.]

Friday, August 2, 2019

Prince Harry Lives Up to His Namesake

“Where men are forbidden to honor a king,” C.S. Lewis warned, “they honor millionaires, athletes or film-stars instead: even famous prostitutes or gangsters. For spiritual nature, like bodily nature, will be served; deny it food and it will gobble poison.” I suppose the gentle don never considered what might happen if men were given a choice to gobble both at once.
Prince Harry and the artist formerly known as Meghan Markle – that’s the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to you – epitomize the moral decadence of our age. The couple made headlines twice this week, both times for being fatuous trendies.
First, the Duke (long rumored to be the legitimate son of the Charles, Prince of Wales) gave a bizarre interview for a special issue of Vogue edited by his wife. Speaking to Jane Goodall for some reason, he vowed to have a “maximum” of two children, hoping to discourage population growth for the sake of the environment.
Harry also took the opportunity to share his thoughts on “unconscious racial bias.” He defines this bias as a “stigma” which is “learned from your family, learned from the older generation, or from advertising, from your environment.” Was Harry simply unconscious, then, when he donned a Nazi armband for a costume party in 2005? Well, never mind.


The Sussexes are happy to lecture commoners about their deep-seated racist tendencies, of course, but only through an intermediary. That same week, it was reported that Harry and Meghan’s handlers have being paying visits to the couples’ new neighbors, ordering them not to interact with the royals. The Sussexes’ neighbors are specifically forbidden from offering to walk the couple’s dog or even wishing them a good morning.
At some level, one must feel bad for Harry. Just a few years ago, he wanted nothing more than to serve in his grandmother’s armed forces and play strip pool with young floozies in Vegas. Now, he’s just another woke snob with a messiah complex. Is this what he expected from married life – long pillow talks about the dangers of bagged produce? This, boys and girls, is why you wait ‘til you’re married.

[Read more at Crisis.]

Friday, July 19, 2019

Is Big Tech trying to suppress the pro-life movement?

Donald Trump and Elizabeth Warren have both made headlines this past week, accusing social media companies of aiding and comforting the enemy. The President claims that Twitter censors right-wing voices; meanwhile, the Massachusetts senator says that Facebook didn’t do enough to curtail “fake news” during the 2016 election. Regardless of whether Big Tech is hostile to conservatives or progressives, however, it seems clear that the pro-life movement has few friends in Silicon Valley.

Cary Solomon, the producer and co-writer of the anti-abortion film Unplanned, was among those invited to participate in last week’s White House summit on social media. “We are the tip of the spear as far as social media persecution goes,” she told the Catholic News Agency. She said that her project was “directly, monetarily hurt” by Big Tech’s alleged suppression of pro-life content.

Lila Rose, the founder of Live Action, was also in attendance. For years Twitter has forbidden her group from buying ad space on its platform. Twitter specifically cited as offensive Live Action’s calls for the US government to defund Planned Parenthood (which is still allowed to advertise on Twitter). Ms Rose also claims that YouTube “buried our pro-life videos and boosted abortion videos”. Last month, Live Action was permanently suspended from Pinterest. Meanwhile, posts teaching women how to perform DIY abortions remain on the site.
This isn’t a recent development, either. In 2014, reports emerged that Google had decided to block ads from crisis pregnancy centres at the behest of the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL). The pro-choice giant was outraged that these pregnancy centres were allowed to bid for space when users searched for the keyword “abortion clinics”. Google conceded, ensuring that women would never learn of a non-fatal alternative to abortion.

[Read more at the Catholic Herald.]

Thursday, July 18, 2019

MWD on Tucker

Did you miss me on Tucker Carlson Tonight discussing Jeffrey Epstein, President-Emeritus of the Hellfire Club? Watch it here!