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A Spotlight on the uses and abuses of Catholic Social Teaching

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Rick Santorum's Gospel-free Catholicism

Theologian and holy man Rick Santorum magnanimoulsy concedes that President Obama is a Christian, but notes that the president's theology is deficient and more focused on the earth than is

biblically warranted.

Santorum's evil Obama straw man apparently is obsessed with the environment and climate change.

Funny thing is, many progressives would say that the president has not been concerend enough with climate change. How often does he mention it? What has he really done about it?

Santorum is fully aligned with the know-nothings who say that man-made global warming is a liberal plot to take over the world, masterminded by the evil Al Gore.  The impeccable reasoning goes like

this: "Al Gore is a Democrat.  We don't like Al Gore. Therefore man-made global warming is a false, evil plot to take away our freedom." Facts have nothing to do with it.

Funny thing for Super-Catholic Santorum, the popes have been acknowleding climate change going back to 1993. Recent statements by Pope Benedict have acknowledged it also. Does this mean he has fallen prey to an evil liberal plot to control our lives?

Also interesting that Santorum criticizes Obama for not being biblically oriented enough.  One could say that the things  Santorum is obsesssed about in Catholic doctrine are not biblically based at all, such as artificial contraception and abortion. 

(That isn't to say the Catholic Church is wrong about abortion, it's right. But that's an entirely different matter than the fact that Santorum's brand of Catholicism contradicts much of Jesus' teaching in the New Testament, teaching the defines the core of what is means to be a Christian).

Where? For instance, matters like compassion for the poor (Mt. 25), being non-judgemental, non-violent and forgiving (Mt. 5-7) do not seem to make it into Santorum's  theology at all.  He's  judgemental

against the poor and indifferent, too, declaring that "suffering is a part of life."

Given Santorum's pro-plutocracy view of economics, "suffering is a part of life" does not seem to be part of his message for corporations and the rich when it comes to sacrificing some wealth to do more for the common good.

As for non-violence, the fact that Santorum is a pro-war neo-conservative, closely aligned with the neo-con Ethics and Public Policy Center has not been getting nearly enough play so far. (After all, he won't be criticized for that in the GOP!)

Santorum is a Super Catholic but I wonder if he is in fact really a Christian. I do not know the Jesus he is preaching.

12:12 am est          Comments

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Newt the know-northing

Newt Gingrich says that if Obama is re-elected president, he will declare war on the Catholic Church. What hysterical nonsense.

No, he won't. This is absurd. 

Newt, I've been a Catholic 48 more years than you have and I know a lot more about it, and I despise how you are using my Church for your own futile ego trip.


In other news, Mitt Romney says he was "severely conservative" while governor of Massachusetts. Funny thing, I had the privilege to vote against Romney in Mass. and lived here while he was governor. I didn't notice any severe conservatism. Only the moderate fiscal conservatism paired with the social liberalism of his esteemed Republican predecessor as governor, William Weld.


 Rachel Maddow was much more subdued than the other hosts about the Obama change on contraceptive coverage and the Church. I like her, but her nun aunt notwithstanding, her lack of sympathy for the Church is quite apparent.

2:07 pm est          Comments

Friday, February 10, 2012

Hooray for the President

President Obama's Solomon-like decision today both to respect the freedom of religion for the institutional Catholic Church and to provide contraceptive coverage for women who seek to have it, will not satisfy the Obama-haters.

The three Republican candidates for president, of course, are not happy. Gingrich, famously on his third religion (Catholicism) and his third wife (Calista), declares that the President is waging war on the Catholic Church. Bull.

As I noted on Twitter just the other day @banner_religion, the right will no doubt be greatly disappointed that this issue is off the table. Look for bloviating rage to continue going forward.

As for Rick Santorum, see my opinion piece on the home page of this site. He's an über-Catholic on all the sex-related issues, but a reliable plutocrat when it comes to economics. At CPAC today, he said the economy was secondary; what comes first? Social issues, and no doubt the fantasy war he and the right imagine Obama is waging against religion.


Oh, also interesting to see Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio now a Catholic again — instead of an evangelical — once hay could be made over Obama and the Catholic Church. 

With this said, I do have to note that I was appalled by the tone-deafness of liberals on MSNBC to legitimate concerns about freedom of religion. Rachel Maddow was particularly infuriating. I'm waiting to see what tone she takes tonight. The hosts so far have been favorable to the president's decision.


8:21 pm est          Comments

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