Thursday, June 30, 2016

Trolling the Papal Defenders

If I were more of a bastard, I'd take to trolling the most knee-jerk and frantic papal defenders out there. Not merely the people who give Francis the benefit of the doubt, but the people who feign innocent shock that anyway could possibly misunderstand the holy father, tut tut, shouldn't you know better than to take what he says at face value.

A good way to do it would be to just demand they explain how this or that quote from the Pope, from some foreign newspaper, could possibly be squared with Church teaching. And once they bend over backwards to reinterpret whatever you provide them in a way that makes it clear the Pope -obviously- meant something totally orthodox by that, you stop and go, 'Oops, hold on. That was actually a quote by Ayn Rand/Joseph Stalin/Anton LeVay. I got things mixed up. Anyway, you were saying?'

I have zero doubt that I'd find people explaining that of -course- this particular tract from Ayn Rand's Playboy interview was like, straight out of the Catechism, goodness gracious don't people even read their own church's documents nowadays?


Codgitator (Cadgertator) said...


I went for something like this in a podcast I did with Steve for One Peter Five, the old "Maoist or Modernist?" segment. It's truly hard to tell the difference at times.

(BTW, I recently ordered a fresh copy of Feser's TLS, and boy do I feel old realizing it was published back in 2008!)

Crude said...

Hey Codg, nice to see you around. TLS, still a great book!

For me the issue isn't that it would be hard to tell the difference - I think most famous people will have 'inspiring/thoughtful-sounding passages who they will happily attribute to people they like'. It's more that usually it's entirely possible to twist, turn and explain someone's words to divine a benign intention... even if the benign intention isn't there.

To a degree I'm sympathetic to the idea that everything the Pope says must be read in the light of tradition, *no matter what his own personal intention may be*. But that's dealing with a particular issue of teaching. I'm dealing with another issue, which is more pastoral than anything, and which people seem blind to. There's a kind of sado-masochistic aspect to modern Christianity, where everyone is a delicate, loving, -superior- soul who Christians - wicked and foul, ever displeasing to our Master - must bow and scrape towards. I do not just reject that line of thinking, I consider it downright immoral, and if I can send such a moralizer packing, I will do so.