A recent flattering article in the New Yorker describes Tim Kaine, Hillary Clinton's vice-presidential running mate, as a "devout Roman Catholic." Not only that, but the paean proceeds to declare that the pious senator "is more comfortable quoting Scripture than any Democrat to reach the level of Presidential politics since Jimmy Carter." There is more: [...]

A recent flattering article in the New Yorker describes Tim Kaine, Hillary Clinton's vice-presidential running mate, as a "devout Roman Catholic." Not only that, but the paean proceeds to declare that the pious senator "is more comfortable quoting Scripture than any Democrat to reach the level of Presidential politics since Jimmy Carter." There is more: [...]

I know there are plenty of Catholics who are, in one way or another, looking forward to the relentless institutional persecution that is coming our way unless we surrender the One Thing Needful to the secular left, and that is the family-destroying and state-feeding beast called the Sexual Revolution, with its seven heads and ten [...]

If Islamization ever comes to America—and it may come quickly depending on the outcome of the November election—certain Catholic individuals and institutions will bear a heavy burden of responsibility. I’m thinking in particular of Georgetown University and its Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (ACMCU). ACMCU’s Bridge Initiative released a report in September on [...]

On a Tuesday in 1852, the thirteenth of July for the literary record since it was a day important for English letters, Blessed John Henry Newman mounted the pulpit of Oscott College, its halls relatively new though designed by Joseph Potter and Augustus Pugin to recall the best of the Tudor times before the depredations [...]

“I die in the Catholic Apostolic and Roman religion, that of my fathers, that in which I was brought up, and which I have always professed” wrote Queen Marie Antoinette in the early morning hours before her execution on October 16, 1793. She penned these words in her final letter, written to her sister-in-law Princess [...]

Back in 2008, in the weeks leading up to the Obama-McCain presidential election, two young men visited me in Denver. They were from Catholics United, a group describing itself as committed to social justice issues. They voiced great concern at the manipulative skill of Catholic agents for the Republican Party. And they hoped my brother [...]

The Holy Father will be creating 17 new cardinals in November—three of them from the United States. Since I’ve been writing a small series of articles on the American hierarchy’s views on gun control for Crisis, the timing of the announcement is interestingly coincidental: two of our American cardinals-to-be have publicly called for increased gun control [...]

If you’re looking for a good reason to vote Clinton this November, let me point you in the direction of this video. Movie director Joss Whedon has set up an organization dramatically labeled Save the Day, and is making some short videos staring an assortment of celebrities, mostly from his Avengers movies, with a few [...]

In the mid-1990s the philosopher Norman Geras published a short book on the “ungroundable liberalism” of Richard Rorty. Geras was annoyed that many of Rorty’s relativist fellow travelers were some of the same people demanding “social justice” of one sort or another based on claims about reality they took to be self-evidently true (e.g. “The [...]

The great Thomist Josef Pieper penned a short book in the late seventies on how totalitarian regimes use words to gain control over the masses: Abuse of Language – Abuse of Power. Pieper’s treatise came to mind as I read that the Canadian government is no longer going to refer to ISIS as ISIS (that [...]

Why Facts Matter

“Facts don't matter.” The first time I heard these words they came from a teacher to an audience of students during a presentation intended to celebrate black history. As part of the presentation, the teacher had intended to illustrate racial injustice in this country by showing pictures of the infamous “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” protests [...]

When business is based on selfishness everybody is busy becoming more selfish.  ~ Peter Maurin You gotta’ love socialists. At least I do. I love their passionate idealism, their desire for economic parity, their disdain for rapacious laissez-faire capitalism—and their mod outfits. Thanks to Bernie Sanders and his quixotic campaign for the presidency, there’s plenty of [...]

I recently commented on the current emphasis on marginalization as a central moral issue, and said the tendency should not be idealized. Its basic effect, I suggested, is to support the movement toward an administratively integrated system covering the whole of social and economic life, and thus the interests of the bureaucrats and billionaires who [...]

I hear frequently in this year’s election campaign that Supreme Court appointments should be the key consideration in the choice between the presidential candidates. That’s certainly understandable, and perhaps true. It reflects, however, an unfortunate attitude—widespread and deeply ingrained in the American psyche—that the Court is somehow the ultimate, sovereign institution in the United States. [...]

The Missouri legislature recently passed (over a veto) some new gun laws. These laws clear the way for “Constitutional Carry”: anyone legally permitted to own a firearm can now carry it concealed in public without a permit. (The term means, in effect, “I don’t need a permit to carry—the Constitution is my permit.”) Also included [...]

On my way to work at Providence College, I pass by two notable murals painted on concrete retaining walls to edify motorists passing by. One of them is executed in the brightly colored style of a cartoon, with exaggerated circles and curlicues for eyes and hair and ears and noses. It cries out in big [...]

Disarming America

Donald Trump is catching some heat for saying that Hillary Clinton’s bodyguards should set aside their weapons, after which we’d “see what happens.” Was he inciting violence against Clinton? If so, I sure don’t see it, but leave that worry aside. Regardless of what else he might have meant, he surely meant to criticize Clinton for [...]

On Sunday, we observed the fifteenth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Monday, September 12, marked the tenth anniversary of Pope Benedict XVI’s famous Regensburg Address. Although the controversy about this brief talk centered on the Pope’s comments about Islam and violence, the pontiff’s main critique was aimed, not at Islam, but at the West. [...]

I am well aware that there is disagreement about what is meant by the “Benedict Option.” It at least seems to mean that serious Christians should, to at least some degree, separate themselves from the mainstream of today’s rankly secular culture, try to congregate as much as possible with like-minded people and build up their [...]

True and False Freedom

It has been said before but it bears repeating: the progressive ethos of liberation of all, from all, is death. The progressive worldview has at its core but a single guiding principle—libertinism; that man should endure no restraints and suffer no constraints save those that upon himself he enforces. In a word, he should be [...]

The Appaloosa Music Festival opened my eyes to something I had been vaguely skeptical about, though vaguely skeptical might too weakly describe what I actually believed about the good, the true, and the beautiful (GTB). GTB can be a mode of evangelizing a hostile culture. But I had tended to view it as a way [...]