Abuse of Power

The Crisis of the Christian Colleges

We are often told these days, quite plausibly, that Christian universities and colleges are in acute crisis. The threat comes from campus radicals in alliance with the federal government’s educational machinery, itself operated by radicalized functionaries. “The expansion of the scope of Title IX legislation by the Obama administration makes colleges that hold to traditional [...]

There Are Monsters Out There

Charity. Forgiveness. Love. Mercy. Peace. Here is the heart of the Gospel, the core of the classic Christian message. Should we, then, find someone today who models these ineffable virtues and seek to elect him, or her, to the presidency? Should a person of such transcendent noble character serve as a diplomat, a military leader, [...]

What Kind of Thing is Authority?

"Some are born great, some achieve greatness, some have greatness thrust upon them..." So quoted Malvolio in Shakespseare's Twelfth Night (albeit as he read from a letter written by Maria, so, ironically, the great lines on greatness were not even his). History, along with current events, which will comprise much of future history, is much-ado [...]

The Judiciary’s Lawless Response to Trump’s Executive Order

The imperial American judiciary has struck again. This time it has taken upon itself the prerogative to enter a domain that historically it shied away from: national security. A few weeks ago, a federal judge in Washington State stopped the implementation of President Trump’s executive order temporarily halting entry into the U.S. from seven Islamic-majority [...]

The Evaporation of Truth

Everyone agrees that public discussion has become divorced from reality. On the hard left people talk about capitalist propaganda, while the soft left, including most respectable journalists, complains about conspiracy theories, truthiness, fake news, and the post-truth era. At the same time, conservatives protest media omissions, distortions, falsehoods, and narratives, while the far right grabs [...]

The Catholic Answer to the Abuse of Power

The accumulation and exercise of power is on the rise in public life. The secular culture is obsessed with power, especially the universities and those institutions most directly influenced by them, including the media, even local government, and, sadly, service-oriented non-profit organizations. Corporations are also exercising power in new and frightening ways. Power is the [...]

Abuse of Language Leads to the Abuse of Power

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 [...]

Any “Benedict Option” Must Consider the CPS

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 [...]

Taking on the Homosexual Movement

In a previous column and elsewhere I have written that the approach needed for those in politics who want to face down the left should be: confront, educate, consistently, in charity. We could add to it: with prudence. The educative function of politics seems almost lost, especially for those on the conservative side. Prudence, if [...]

Abortionists Protected by Corrupt Friends in High Places

Ten months ago, David Daleiden and his investigative journalism group, The Center for Medical Progress, released the first fruits of their inaugural study, Human Capital. Like many Americans, I didn’t immediately watch the first ten-minute video with Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s Dr. Deborah Nucatola. As the president of a non-profit law firm, I am very [...]

Latest News Events Suggest U.S. Constitution a Dead Letter

February 2015 did not just feature bitter cold in the eastern half of the U.S., but was a news-laden month that provided a window on a large number of our contemporary social, political, and cultural troubles. Heading the list was the continuing saga of big and increasingly threatening government in the Age of Obama. Early [...]

When Man is the Measure of All Things

The distinguished political philosopher Leo Strauss was supposed to have said that the only two things in life really worth talking about are God and politics. That’s because at a most fundamental level they are inextricably intertwined. A skewed notion of the very nature of God and whether man acknowledges him—or tries to substitute himself [...]

When the Government Takes Your Children

Many people who have followed the Justina Pelletier case—largely ignored by the mainstream media, by the way—have thought that there has to be more to it, or that it’s an outrageous out-of-the-ordinary affair. This is the case where the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families forcibly took custody from her parents over a year ago [...]

A U.S. Constitution for Our Dystopian Present

We the People of the United States of America, to relieve ourselves of the burdens of virtue and the nuisance of self-government, and to secure the blessings that flow from the collective and the isolated individual, do establish this Constitution. There shall be a Supreme Court of the United States, composed of nine lawyers.  All [...]

The Demise of Legitimate Political Authority

Some forty years ago, in his groundbreaking study, Twilight of Authority, sociologist Robert Nisbet observed a disturbing trend in American culture. As respect for authority had declined among the population, he wrote, members of that population became increasingly willing to accept and actually applaud an increasingly powerful, albeit less legitimate, government The notion of true [...]

IRS Targets Catholic Critics of Obama Regime

The revelations of the scandals within the Obama administration in the past couple of weeks make those of us who are old enough recall 1973, when Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein’s investigative reporting and then the hearings of a special Senate investigative committee brought to the public one astounding detail after another about Watergate. The [...]

A Nation of Sludge

 I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree, And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made; Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honeybee; And live alone in the bee-loud glade.  And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow, Dropping from the veils [...]

On Unequal and Unjust Demands for Equality

Aristotle, that common sense fellow, defined justice as giving to each his due.  That definition admits of equality in inequality, in obvious ways.  The indulgence we allow a child we deny to a grown man; the familiarity with which we treat the paperboy might offend the elderly woman in church.  Each person is equally deserving [...]

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