* While I'm silent on this blog, I keep close tabs on a lot of things, including everything on my sidebar. So imagine my surprise to see John Loftus himself drunkenly stumbling into the crosshairs of the one and only Ed Feser! Loftus, as everyone knows, is to atheism what Lindsey Graham was to the 2016 GOP election - a mediocrity and an also-ran whose main contribution was being unintentionally comedic. Naturally Ed dismantled him the way he deserves to be dismantled: brutally, quickly, and in front of a crowd. Internet philosophers and apologists, take note: this is how you deal with Loftus. Not 'co-author a book with him' or go for some smarmy dialogue-debate in the hopes of drumming up views which he doesn't even have any of to spare.
* I'm also keeping tabs on the election. As ever I'm a Trump guy, and I think I've been vindicated over and over again. Talk of how Cruz is 'anti-establishment' becomes harder and harder to swallow as he continues to collaborate with party bosses to vote-rig, Hillary Clinton style, and rack up endorsements from every GOPe shitheel that his supporters would normally, rightly, despise. I actually don't have much hostility towards Cruz supporters in the main, save for the ones who Officially Support him - and by that I mean major-enough or wannabe-major-enough bloggers - largely because they have the stench of toady on them. It's important to remember that the GOPe is not 'two dozen guys in a room' or even 'a bunch of billionaires and millionaires' - it's also every small-time pissant with a connection or two looking to open doors for themselves to bigger and better things. It's bloggers who feel like one of the 'big guys' when no less than an actual congressman's secretary sends them a bi-annual email asking them to push one issue or another. I pray for a Trump nomination victory, just so I can watch how quickly they pivot, because believe me - most of them will have to if that comes to pass.
* I keep an eye on Malcolm's blog for a number of reasons, one of which is I'm thrilled to see someone of his political and religious convictions getting into fiction-writing - we need more of that. But I also stumbled upon his criticizing the one and only Lydia McGrew's defense of refusing to ever treat women who procure abortions as in need of legal punishment for the act. I got into the act and explained my problems with her view, which I see as pretty foul capitulation (and thus cultural erosion) borne out of imaginary, ineffective pragmatism. I don't go easy on Lydia, partly because she conducts herself terribly with even friendly critics, and partly because I find the sort of reasoning she's engaging in odious. I'm familiar with it, because I used to think in a similar way - this idea that what we (social conservatives) need to do is divest ourselves of politically unpalatable ideas (and thus - unavoidably - the people who hold public views that aren't sufficiently mainstream enough) in order to pass whatever milquetoast watered-down legislation we can. People think that this is crafty and wise political positioning, but in reality it's suicide for the organizations which embrace it, which in turn means surrender in the culture war.
* Oh, and I see the Pope released his thoughts on marriage. I'm of the view that the document is surprisingly good (thanks, Holy Spirit), with the problems traditionalists have over it being imaginary, yet at the same time understandable. Look, I understand that 'vagueness' at parts gets abused by liberals. I do. But you know what liberals do when you get exacting and specific in your wording? They treat it as vague anyway. Or they ignore it. Vagueness is exploited by liberals, but they also have no problem just plain ignoring rules or making things up if need be (see the SCOTUS on same-sex marriage.) So it's a fool's errand to try and liberal-proof a document to the extreme some traditionalists want. If being blunt would suffice to gut them, various parts of that document would have done the trick, re: abortion, gay marriage, etc. You think that's going to shut down pro-abortion Catholics? Me neither. Because they don't care, and they never will care. So don't strategize on the assumption that they do care.