progressives

A Medieval Remedy for Modernity’s Ills

Show me a Catholic not troubled by the circumstances of these days, and I will show you a Catholic asleep. Society’s woes rock his soul, but the historic perils facing Holy Church do so even more. Not only from outside her walls, but more frighteningly, from within. How are we to keep our spirits from [...]

Christopher Lasch: One of Bannon’s Favorite Authors

As Christopher Lasch was an unrepentant man of the left, it is to say the least doubtful that he would much relish being associated with Steve Bannon, the pugnacious and controversial former advisor to President Trump. Yet for good or ill the association is there, because some time ago the CEO of Breitbart identified Lasch’s [...]

A Disturbing Portrait of the Present-Day American Left

I’ve argued in previous columns that at bottom the problem of the left is a lack of integrity and that it’s hard to find a prominent leftist who truly exhibits integrity—at least in his assessments of politics and public affairs. I’ve also mentioned the obvious inconsistencies in the positions taken by the left, and the [...]

When Left-wing Politics Becomes a Substitute for Religion

Spring has barely sprung, but this much can already be said for 2017: it’s a bumper year for activism. On April 29, in honor of Donald Trump’s one hundredth day as president, 300,000 Americans marched in support of “jobs, justice, and climate action.” (That’s a quote from the website of the “People’s Climate Movement.” Do [...]

Virtue Signaling is the Opposite of Virtue

On April 12, the attorney general of California, Xavier Becerra, said that North Carolina will remain on the list of states to which California employees may not travel using state money. The reason for the ban is simple: California wants you to know how virtuous it is. In other words, the state is virtue signaling. [...]

Ideology and the Crisis of Integrity in American Politics

We hear a lot nowadays about the polarization in American politics, between the two parties and between conservatives and “progressives” (as liberals have come to be called). What is not mentioned is that, due especially to ideology, the great casualty of our current politics has been integrity. While politics is not known as a field [...]

The Priesthood of the Transgendered

There was always something Disneyesque about the 1980s preachers of the prosperity gospel. Of course there was no corpus on their cross, but that sacrilege had been achieved by earlier versions of Protestantism. What was really galling about the perpetually smiling televangelists was their soft-lens obliteration of the cross, which had at least remained a [...]

The Iron-Fisted Tyranny of Political Correctness

In the span of a few years, the dictatorship of relativism has given way to the tyranny of political correctness. Under the first regime, universal truth was supplanted by personal truth; under the current one, it is exchanged for outright falsehood. Consider the rise of statements such as, Sexual orientation is inborn and fixed. Gender [...]

A Turning Point in the Culture War?

Is the social revolution approaching its Thermidor, the point at which its progress stops or reverses? It's difficult to be optimistic, but recent developments raise the possibility. Until very recently, effective opposition to globalism, open borders, and lifestyle liberalism—that is, for traditional local ties over global markets, regulatory bureaucracies, and recent understandings of human rights—had [...]

Trump the Rotarian and Why Elites Hate Him and You, Too

Publishing scion Al Regnery told a story last night about how the hoi polloi out on the campaign hustings appreciated the fact that Donald Trump always dressed to the nines. Always perfectly turned out, business suit, dress shirt, shined shoes, perfectly knotted four-in-hand tie, the working man appreciated Trump’s authenticity. One man said, “This is [...]

Tim Kaine Commends Hillary with a Communist Poet

Hillary Clinton’s concession speech the day after her stunning loss to Donald Trump was a historic moment. She was gracious and remarkably strong and poised given the political and emotional enormity of what had happened to her. But surely the weirdest part of the moment was her introduction by her running mate and comrade, Tim [...]

Two Newmans and Two Catholic Springs

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 [...]

How Progressives Stole Christian History

The Greeks invented philosophy. They gave us Herodotus, the father of history, too. Their philosophy of history was cyclical, meaning they believed history had highs and lows, but lacked purpose. The Christian intellectual tradition first proposed that history moves in a linear fashion, corresponds with progress, and culminates with a utopian end point. Modern day [...]

Welcome to Reality

I've never quite felt at home on earth. I get sick sometimes, and that's just wrong, and I am mildly afflicted when I have to tear out poison ivy in bunches, and that also is wrong. Sometimes I meet people who aren't very nice, or who think that I am not very nice. Sometimes there [...]

Why “Progressives” Favor the State Over Society

The New York Times was abuzz March 5. The board of trustees of South Carolina’s Erskine College—a small, liberal arts college historically associated with the Presbyterian church—had issued a statement declaring that the school considered "all sexual activity outside the covenant of marriage [as] sinful and therefore ultimately destructive of the parties involved.” Not only did [...]

Don’t Lose Sleep Over Climate Change Encyclical

It’s official. Progressives love Pope Francis. Their magazines, from Think Progress to Mother Jones, are abuzz with excitement in light of the recent rumor that the pope is going to issue an encyclical on climate change sometime in the next few months. As a politically conservative American Catholic, I’m expected to throw a fit about [...]

A Tale of Two Churches

Once upon a time there was a church founded on God’s entering into human history in order to give humanity a path to eternal life and happiness with him. The Savior that God sent, his only-begotten Son, did not write a book but founded a community, a church, upon the witness and ministry of twelve [...]

Marriage Debate Far From Over

Progressives keep telling us that the marriage debate is over. Some Republicans have joined the chorus. Mark McKinnon this week explained that, Allowing committed gay couples to marry never has—and never will—lead to these sorts of things. Instead, the impact of gay marriage—legal now in 44 percent of the country—has been stronger families, less government [...]

The Moral Divide Between Progressives and Traditionalists

A recent account of moral sentiments, proposed by social psychologist Jonathan Haidt in his book, The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion (Pantheon, 2012), has attracted attention for its explanation of the difference between progressives and traditionalists. According to the account, moral judgments typically have to do with six dimensions [...]

Progressives Eat Their Own in Virginia

Continuing their commitment to silence anyone who might stand in the way of their agenda, gay and lesbian groups are now beginning to criticize supporters who are thought to be insufficiently loyal. The most recent case involves Douglas Laycock, a University of Virginia law professor, who is married to the University’s president, Teresa A. Sullivan.   [...]

Catholicism Must Be a Sign of Contradiction

Last month I noted that Catholics need settings in which they can lead a Catholic life among Catholics. For most of us, loving God and living as Christians take schooling and support, which we aren’t going to get from the world at large. That may be one reason the Apostle Paul’s letters focus more on [...]

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