ONCE TO EVERY MAN AND NATION

Saturday, February 18th, 2012 | Uncategorized

Rabbi Meir Soloveichik of New York’s Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun, and Director of the Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought at Yeshiva University points out that Barack Obama’s recent decision to force the Catholic Church to see that any of its employees who wanted it would be provided with “free” birth control didn’t just order the Catholic church to change its doctrine.  It also gives the government the right to decide what is or isn’t religious practice:

What I wish to focus on this morning is the exemption to the new insurance policy requirements that the administration did carve out from the outset: to wit, exempting from the new insurance policy obligations religious organizations that do not employ or serve members of other faiths.  From this exemption carved out by the administration, at least two important corollaries follow.  First: by carving out an exemption, however narrow, the administration implicitly acknowledges that forcing employers to purchase these insurance policies may involve a violation of religious freedom.  Second, the administration implicitly assumes that those who employ or help others of a different religion are no longer acting in a religious capacity, and as such are not entitled to the protection of the First Amendment. 

This betrays a complete misunderstanding of the nature of religion. For Orthodox Jews, religion and tradition govern not only praying in a synagogue, or studying Torah in a beit midrash, or wrapping oneself in the blatant trappings of religious observance such as phylacteries. Religion and tradition also inform our conduct in the less obvious manifestations of religious belief, from feeding the hungry, to assessing medical ethics, to a million and one things in between. Maimonides, one of Judaism’s greatest talmudic scholars and philosophers, and also a physician of considerable repute, stresses in his Code of Jewish Law that the commandment to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart” is achieved not through cerebral contemplation only but also requires study of the sciences, and engagement in the natural world, as this inspires true appreciation of the wisdom of the Almighty.  In refusing to extend religious liberty beyond the parameters of what the administration chooses to deem religious conduct, the administration denies people of faith the ability to define their religious activity. Therefore, not only does the new regulation threaten religious liberty in the narrow sense, in requiring Catholic communities to violate their religious tenets, but also the administration impedes religious liberty by unilaterally redefining what it means to be religious. 

The force of this and other arguments against Obama’s assault on American religious freedom is implicitly acknowledged by Obama disciples like shrieking Episcopalian hysteric Susan Russell who desperately and ineptly tries to change the subject.

Watching the CNN evening news, the “crawl” along the bottom of the screen read: “Catholic bishops denounce contraception compromise.” My comment on twitter was:”Seriously???? That qualifies as NEWS??? Enough with theocratic war on democracy.” Because here’s the deal: It’s time to call foul on the much ballyhooed “war on religion” and call it what it is … and it IS a theocratic war on democracy.

It is not only possible — it is essential if we’re going to win the theocratic war being waged on our democracy. So let’s all “Just Say No” to the myth of war on religion — whether it comes from a bishop or a Baptist — and get busy making liberty and justice for all not just a pledge but a reality.

“War on democracy,” Susie?  Really?  Someone who cheered the recent court decision overturning California’s Proposition 8 really shouldn’t use those words since people start calling you a raging hypcrite when you do.

But let’s see.  Inventing a “right,” imposing a practice on a religious institution that considers that practice to be a grave evil and then fashioning a “compromise” that leaves that “right” in place by means on an accounting trick of questionable legality constitutes “a theocratic war on democracy.”  Whatever you say, cupcake.

Why did Barack Obama pick this needless fight with the Roman Catholic Church?  After all, a majority of Catholic voters supported him and many of his declared social justice goals perfectly accord with Catholic teaching

So what was the problem?  Ignorance?  A miscalculation?  Or is there, as Paul Rahe asserts, something far more sinister going on?

We know a bit more now. We know that the President did not act on impulse, that he took his time in making this decision, and that he sought advice from a range of individuals within the Democratic Party. Vice-President Joe Biden and William Daley, who was then Obama’s Chief of Staff, both profess to be Catholic, and they strongly advised against doing anything that would antagonize the Catholic bishops and the laity. Kathleen Sebelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, and Nancy Pelosi, the former Speaker of the House and current Democratic minority leader, were also consulted. They, too, profess to be Catholic, and they fiercely advocated imposing this burden on all employers providing health insurance for their employees.

Birth control pills aren’t anywhere near expensive enough to risk the Presidency over.

On the face of it, President Obama would appear to be shooting himself in the foot. Why would he risk losing the Catholic vote? One could, of course, argue that his aim was to excite the feminists and give them a reason to turn out in November. As a rationale, however, even this seems a bit lame. The benefit that the President proposes to provide is insubstantial. The administration’s claim to the contrary notwithstanding, the pill and other birth control devices are not free. But the expense involved is not great. Among those who are employed and have healthcare insurance, no one is hard put to come up with the paltry sum required.

To Rahe, the President’s actions have only one meaning.  Barack Obama has finally dropped the mask.

This suggests that there can be only one reason why Sebelius, Pelosi, and Obama decided to proceed. They wanted to show the bishops and the Catholic laity who is boss. They wanted to make those who think contraception wrong and abortion a species of murder complicit in both.  They wanted to rub the noses of their opponents in it. They wanted to marginalize them. Humiliation was, in fact, their only aim, and malice, their motive.

Obama’s “compromise” was actually a gesture of contempt.

Last week, when, in response to the fierce resistance he had deliberately stirred up, the President offered the bishops what he called “an accommodation,” what he proffered was nothing more than a fig leaf. His maneuver was, in fact, a gesture of contempt, and I believe that it was Barack Obama’s final offer. From his perspective and from that of Sebelius and Pelosi, the genuine Catholics still within the Democratic coalition are no more than what Vladimir Lenin called “useful idiots,” and, now that the progressive project is near completion, they are expendable – for there is no longer any need to curry their favor.

Bottom line?  Let’s not kid ourselves any longer about who Barack Obama really is.

In 2008, when he first ran for the Presidency, Barack Obama posed as a moderate most of the time. This time, he is openly running as a radical. His aim is to win a mandate for the fundamental transformation of the United States that he promised in passing on the eve of his election four years ago and that he promised again when he called his administration The New Foundation. In the process, he intends to reshape the Democratic coalition – to bring the old hypocrisy to an end, to eliminate those who stand in the way of the final consolidation of the administrative entitlements state, to drive out the faithful Catholics once and for all, to jettison the white working class, and to build a new American regime on a coalition of  highly educated upper-middle class whites, feminists, African-Americans, Hispanics, illegal immigrants, and those belonging to the public-sector unions. To Americans outside this coalition, he intends to show no mercy.

Of course, none of this should surprise any Christian.

Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you(Matthew 5:11-12).

Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.  But beware of men, for they will deliver you up to councils and scourge you in their synagogues.  You will be brought before governors and kings for My sake, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles.  But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you(Matthew 10:16-20).

Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.  For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; and “a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.”  He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.  And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.  He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it(Matthew 10:34-39).

If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.  If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.  Remember the word that I said to you, “A servant is not greater than his master.”  If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also.  But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me.  If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.  He who hates Me hates My Father also.  If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would have no sin; but now they have seen and also hated both Me and My Father.  But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, “They hated Me without a cause(John 15:18-25).”

These things I have spoken to you, that you should not be made to stumble.   They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.  And these things they will do to you because they have not known the Father nor Me.  But these things I have told you, that when the time comes, you may remember that I told you of them.  And these things I did not say to you at the beginning, because I was with you(John 16:1-4).

I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.  I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.  They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world(John 17:14-16).

You get the idea.  And I don’t think it’s too much of a leap from a government legally deciding what church practices ought to be to a government legally deciding, in order to protect someone’s alleged “rights,” what churches ought to be permitted to preach

Because if being legally forced to facilitate the commission of a grave sin is not an infringement of your religious freedom, then neither is being legally forbidden from declaring that what Miss Russell likes to do in her off-hours is sinful.  After all, nobody’s forcing you to stop believing that Christ died on the Cross for your sins, now are they?

And this is only the beginning.  The simple fact of the matter is that defeating our idiot president in November will only delay this trend, it will not stop it.  The white-hot rage toward actual Christianity displayed by pseudo-religious frauds like Susan Russell guarantees that any future areligious despot who happens to win the White House will have plenty of “spiritual” cover for further assaults on the Church.

But like I said, none of this should surprise anyone.

31 Comments to ONCE TO EVERY MAN AND NATION

Fuinseoig
February 18, 2012

I think President Obama didn’t realise he was getting into a fight when his administration proposed this mandate. From some reports I’ve read, Biden and Daley set up a meeting to advise him that this would not go down well with the bishops and that he couldn’t count on the support of ‘progressive’ Catholics either, because this was going too far.

Then Secretary Sebelius and other women advisors got wind of this and lost the plot completely. They demanded that Obama go ahead with the mandate and I imagine – given the demolition job Planned Parenthood did on the Komen Foundation and the unanimous support this received from the media both print and otherwise – that they threatened him about this being an election year and if he let the Catholic Church off the hook, his former allies in NARAL and PP and all the rest would absolutely slaughter him, and the media and all the rest of the liberals who had become disenchanted with him would enthusiastically push a campaign against him.

I think it came down to him calculating votes and more importantly, the PR and media spin against him if he dared cross the ‘reproductive health and justice rights’ crowd, and he never imagined the bishops would all exhibit backbones or that the Catholic left would not fall into line.

Anne B.
February 18, 2012

“They wanted to rub the noses of their opponents in it. They wanted to marginalize them. Humiliation was, in fact, their only aim, and malice, their motive.”

They hate us, pure and simple. It’s taken some folks quite a while to catch on, hasn’t it?

Fuinseoig
February 18, 2012

Tid-bits from this news story:

“Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, a Catholic and a two-term governor of Kansas, was joined by several female Obama advisers in urging against a broad exemption for religious organizations. To do so would leave too many women without coverage and sap the enthusiasm for Obama among women’s rights advocates, they said, according to the people, who spoke about the deliberations on condition of anonymity.

…Sebelius was backed by adviser Valerie Jarrett, Tina Tchen, the first lady’s chief of staff, and Melody Barnes, then director of the Domestic Policy Council, the people said. Among the ideas considered and discarded because of legal objections was an option modeled on a Hawaii law that provides broad exemptions for religious agencies while requiring private insurers to offer contraceptive coverage to the employees.

…Reproductive rights groups, such as Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and Democratic U.S. senators Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire and Boxer and Murray, pressed the administration to stick with a preliminary rule announced by Sebelius in August.

…Advocates countered warnings of alienating Catholics with arguments that an exemption might depress enthusiasm for Obama among women, a disproportionate share of Democratic voters. Women’s advocates intensified their efforts after Obama met in November with Catholic Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York.

Judith L. Lichtman, a senior adviser with the National Partnership for Women and Families in Washington, among the groups that favored minimizing religious exemptions, said the ruling would help Obama in November.”

More from this story:

“For months, Vice President Joe Biden and then-White House chief of staff Bill Daley argued internally against the rule, sources tell ABC News. Biden and Daley didn’t think the rule was right on either the policy or the politics, sources said. Joshua Dubois, head of the Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, also expressed concern.

The policy was wrong, the two Catholic men, Biden and Daley, argued, saying that the Obama administration couldn’t force religious charities to pay for something they think is a sin. Sources say that Biden and Daley in these internal debates emphasized the political fallout more so than the policy issue. Catholics are the ultimate swing voters, they argued. President Obama won the Catholic vote 54-46% in 2008, but he lost among white Catholics 47-53%, according to exit polls.

But Biden and Daley faced a strong group making the case for the rule within the administration – including Catholics such as senior adviser David Plouffe and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, senior White House advisers Valerie Jarrett and Pete Rouse, and then-domestic policy council director Melody Barnes. Others outside the White House also pushed hard for the rule, including former White House communications director Anita Dunn, Senators Barbara Boxer, D-Calif. and Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., and Planned Parenthood Federation of America president Cecile Richards.

…Even with the current controversy raging, many Democrats maintain that the voters they need to vote for Obama in November – young voters nationwide, women voters in battleground states such as Colorado, Virginia, and Pennsylvania – support the president’s decision.”

So we have on one side, the Vice-President and (from what I gather, reading news reports of his resignation), a White House Chief of Staff who was side-lined in the White House by members of the Obama inner circle and unpopular with the Democratic senators and representatives, both men, who argued against the mandate and on the other side, a network of well-connected women administration members and members of the inner circle, backed up by abortion rights activist groups, who put the pressure on every time there seemed to be the possibility of a rapprochement with the Catholic hierarchy (e.g. Dolan’s visit) and used the big stick of “do this and you will lose our support and the support of the women voters you need in an election year, voters we can mobilise against you with the help of our allies in the media” to threaten Obama.

Because see what happened to Bill Daley? Resigned (or was he pushed? was this a head that had to roll to assuage Sebelius, Jarrett and the rest?) in January after just one year in the job. Sebelius and Pelosi? Still full steam ahead.

Barney
February 18, 2012

What can I say against these wise and well informed women? I am just a stupid, bigoted man, who can have no idea of any true meaning of issues.

Fold yer tents fellas… We are no longer necessary. Pelosi, KJS and Sebelius are now in charge. They know all, see all, decide all. Barry O’ has completely abrogated his promise to America, his campaign promises (what else is new) and is Oath of Office.

James Buchanan was a better president.

Fuinseoig
February 18, 2012

I mean, why the hell is the First Lady’s Chief of Staff sticking her oar into a political and moreover, cabinet matter? To quote Wikipedia, “The Office of the First Lady of the United States is accountable to the First Lady of the United States for her to carry out her duties as hostess of the White House, and is also in charge of all social and ceremonial events of the White House.”

So Ms. Tchen helps Mrs. Obama run the White House, fulfil her duties as hostess to visiting dignataries, and whatever social and community projects she has going on the side like healthy eating and the arts and so forth.

Why then is she giving advice on legislation for the Department of Health and Human Services?

gppp
February 18, 2012

Susie gets more loco with age and increasing delusions of self-importance, doesn’t she? Do you think her husband misses her any more?

Robb
February 18, 2012

Psalm 91:8

Sinner
February 18, 2012

And I don’t think it’s too much of a leap from a government legally deciding what church practices ought to be to a government legally deciding, in order to protect someone’s alleged “rights,” what churches ought to be permitted to preach.

The US government has “legally decided” what church practice should be and what churches should be permitted to preach for a couple of hundred years.

Let’s say I’m a hardcore Wahabist Muslim. My religion requires me to have several wives, and to kill Christians on sight. Any chances of the US Federal government staying separate from my church if I stand on a street-corner and exercise my Allah-given rights of free speech and Allah-given command to slay all infidels? Didn’t think so.

But then in the free-speech, free-religion US, Matthew Kennedy announcing from his pulpit (or even on his blog) that to vote for Obama is unchristian will immediately ensure his parish loses tax-free status.

So does “Freedom of Religion” even apply to evangelical and Catholic Christianity?

stan chaz
February 18, 2012

In this dreadful Holy War on Religion, of Religion, and by Religion, I’ve had enough! Maybe even too much. I’m surrendering! ’Cause I’m gonna start my OWN religion, and get in on the good stuff: tax exemptions, and lots of taxpayer money to do what I want… most definitely! Hey Newt -wanna join? We’re gonna have open marriages and multiple wives and all SORTS of neat stuff that you’re just gonna love! But NO nasty stoning of adulterers. Promise! As for Santorum- he’d make a fine preacher…in fact, we’ll make him Saint Santorum. And fix his google search. As for Mr. Obama,  obviously, we’ll need to demonize him even further. And his dog too. Mitt and Ron, hey, just for you guys: no taxes AT ALL …and human sacrifice of illegal aliens. Televised. Whoooppee! What a country! 
By the way, PLEASE don’t mention the REASON that Mitt Romney’s dad was born in Mexico (i.e. the fact that Mitt’s Mormon Grand-dad LEFT the United States in the 1880’s and went to Mexico because laws against polygamy were passed in the U.S. …and being a Mormon, Mitt’s Grand-dad wanted to keep his multiple wives). SO… if we follow the “logic” of the people crying crocodile tears about a non-existent “war on religion”, then the U.S. should have allowed polygamy (and who knows what else) just because a particular religion claimed it as their belief. GIVE ME A BREAK!

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
February 18, 2012

Suzi Q – shut up and bring me a beer!!!!

SouthCoast
February 18, 2012

Hm. Troll wants free coffee hour. Think maybe he’s had a cup too many already.

Jacob Morgan
February 18, 2012

Well something is up when the secularist trolls turn out.

The government should prevent citizens from being deprived of the enumerated constitutional rights. A church can not deprive a third party of a constitutional right. A Muslim may not slay an infidel. But the point here is not protecting a third party from a church, but forcing that church to do something it wishes not to do based on (in this case a doctrine nearly two millennia old that considers that something a mortal sin). It would be like the USDA dictating that all public and private schools must serve 4 ounces of pork with every lunch. Muslims, Jews, and everyone else ought to oppose such an attack. As they should oppose forcing Amish to pay for electrical lines to their houses they do not want, forcing Quakers to join the infantry, etc.

And churches in America do not get money from the government unless it is a church-related organization that is reimbursed for social services work done more efficiently than the government can do the same work. Want to start a church to get tax-free donations? If you can convince people to give you money to listen to you pontificate, go for it. But if these posts are the best you’ve got, don’t quit your day job.

Dr. Mabuse
February 18, 2012

To anyone who’s watched the decades-long descent into insanity of the Episopal “Church”, this lunge for the jugular of the Catholic Church by Obama and his cannibal women would be no surprise. In fact, it’s sort of a reversal of the old saying that history repeats itself, the second time as farce. The farce came first, with the clapped-out homosexual losers taking over TEC and then twisting themselves into ever tighter gyrations of insanity. Pervert lovers fondling each other before the altar? Hymns in praise of abortion? Criminalizing tradition? Stealing churches and selling them to Muslims? The only thing they haven’t done yet is convert the churches of their crushed opponents into abortion mills, and I’ll bet that will be coming along in a year or two. As Rahe said, it’s all about ritual humiliation.

This is why they’re so enraged at things like the Ordinariat – they were anticipating years and years of delicious torture for their hated enemies, and here they are suddenly slipping from their grasp! I think God has some such escape route planned for His people this time, too. Evil never can really triumph for long.

ann r
February 18, 2012

Isn’t the government deciding what a church can be, and do, and what its limits are, a little bit like the power brokers constructing a ghetto? A virtual ghetto? A ghetto of the mind?

Dale Matson
February 18, 2012

There is nothing more dangerous and less feminine than a woman controlled by her animus.

Allen Lewis
February 19, 2012

You know, we tried to warn people over 4 years ago that Barack Obama was a dangerous man. But we were vilified as being racists and alarmists.

Well, sports fans, you got what you wanted and you felt all smug and superior. You got your Nanny State advocate elected and you were going to show us neanderthals that did not think that the Federal Government had any legitimate roll in all these programs that were so near and dear to your hearts. Well, you got what you wanted, now learn to deal with it and quit whining.

Damn fools! You always know what is best. What are you complaining about?

Allen Lewis
February 19, 2012

Well, I guess the Democratic Party will no longer be the party of “Rum, Romanism, and Rebellion.”, they are rapidly dropping the “Romanism” tag. But the big thing is that they are still the party of Rebellion, they have been attacking the Constitution for quite some time. Admittedly, they have had a lot of help from the other side, but it has mainly been their deal.

FW Ken
February 19, 2012

Two points, Allen. First, the remember that something around 20% of Catholics are weekly Mass-goers. ASA runs about 35%-40% of identified membership. So a large number of Catholics calling themselves “Catholic” will be voting Democrat. Some are cafeteria Catholics, some are no more than tribal Catholics.

Second, Catholic social teachings – economics, war, the death penalty, torture, etc. – really do give serious pause when voting for many Republicans, including Sen. Santorum. What is good about the current events is that abortion has become more clearly the primary aspect of the “seamless garment of life”. No longer will the social teachings give cover to pro-abortion Catholics. But that doesn’t mean it’s not Ann issue. Mark Shea is probably the loudest of these voices right now.

Dr. Mabuse
February 19, 2012

Mark “A Better Catholic Than You And Proud Of It!” Shea is not a good guide to any sort of political action. He advocates the “too pure for this sinful world” approach of ostentatiously throwing his vote into the sea until he can ceremoniously bestow it upon a President Lilywhite. Of course, one can only do this if one is absolutely sure that voting is a sort of vanity project of no importance.

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
February 19, 2012

One very clear point to keep in mind is that the Democrat Party recently decided to lurch further to the left giving up its white, working-class constituency. From the NYT last November (just 3 months ago):

“All pretense of trying to win a majority of the white working class has been effectively jettisoned in favor of cementing a center-left coalition…”

So the Party Apparachiks are simply implementing their own strategy by jettisoning the Catholics.

Katherine
February 19, 2012

The rabbi speaks wisely. The government is attempting to dictate what is, and is not, religious behavior. Religious institutions and religious individuals are to be forced to accept the standards of the state. One need not agree with Catholic teaching to see the implicit threat to others’ teaching.

Michal
February 19, 2012

Preventing a religious organization from its charitable works is what’s going on here. Recall that during the course of the 14th century, as Turkish Muslims gained control of Asia Minor from the Byzantine Greeks, Christians and Jews were allowed to conduct their own religious services, but were *not* allowed to run their own charitable institutions. All charity became a monopoly of a Muslim endowment (the Vacouf). Before long only the wealthy could afford to be Christians and Jews; and in this way the bulk of the population was converted to Islam. Yesterday Islam, today secularism. See the parallel?

Allen Lewis
February 19, 2012

FW Ken -
I was mainly venting and I understand your points. They are indeed valid. But I have spoken to many people who are (as far as I can tell) part of that 20% figure you mentioned and who clearly supported the Obamster.

It is these nitwits that I am railing against.

I understand the issues with some Republican candidates, but right now, I think the Democratic Party is definitely not the part of choice if you are a rational Catholic who really believes and practices the faith.

FW Ken
February 19, 2012

I guarantee there will be some weekly Mass-goers who will vote for Pres. Obama this fall but the hope is that a lot fewer will do so. There is a hard left group that remain in the Church purely as a function of adolescent rebellion, and another left-leaning crowd that are simply well-propagandized. I’m not sure how many of those people are regularly at Mass, though.

Fuinseoig
February 20, 2012

Dr. Mabuse, I don’t think Mark Shea is waiting for a perfect candidate, because there never was and never will be such an animal.

What I don’t understand is why it seems so impossible for America to have a third party; if you don’t like the Democrats and you don’t like the Republicans, what is stopping anyone from setting up a third party?

We’ve had plenty of political parties over here in Ireland and some have flourished and some have failed (the Progressive Democrats is the most spectacular example of ‘from boom to bust’ here in recent times), but even we and England have managed to have more than two parties (in England, the Liberal Democrats have managed to get themselves into coalition as the ruling government, even though everyone expects them to sink back into obscurity as soon as this term of government is over).

So why do otherwise reasonable people seem to think that Independents and movements like the Tea Party have no chance at all of ever getting off the ground as anything other than maybe a crank vote in one or two places, but not even likely to win a single seat?

FW Ken
February 20, 2012

Shea lives in a safely Democratic state and can afford political puritanism. As someone living in a safely Republican state, I’m in the same situation: I can vote however I want, our electoral votes will still go to a Republican. This is not, however, helpful to someone living in a swing state. Personally, I look harder at a Catholic candidate than a protestant or non-Christian. If they are a cafeteria Catholic, of the left or right variety, that tells me something about them I need to know.

Katherine
February 20, 2012

Fuinseoig, it just doesn’t seem to work as well here. There are no third parties with enough support to split Congress three or four ways. Effectively, as FW Ken notes, in a “swing” district or state, one which could go either way, a third party vote or an abstention is a vote for whoever wins. In this way conservatives who sat out the 2008 presidential election because the candidate was not pure helped elect Obama.

Geosez
February 20, 2012

Yes, Anne B., they do hate us. Thing is, now they’ve been given permission to hate us.

FW Ken
February 20, 2012

I would also like to see a multi-party system in the U.S., but for several reasons I doubt it’s suited to the American ethos. We like clear winners.

But it’s not systems and processes we need. I just read this, which convicts me that we need another Way :

http://www.catholicculture.org/news/headlines/index.cfm?storyid=13386&amp

Lent’s upon us and it seems a good time to consider the underlying problem, and not ust the problems.

Katherine
February 20, 2012

That’s a heartening story, FW Ken.

FW Ken
February 21, 2012

If anyone is still reading this, here’s a worthy look at ”the Catholic vote”.

http://www.getreligion.org/2012/02/stalking-the-mythical-catholic-vote-yet-again/

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