Shame on Mike Huckabee

Shenanigans

Jim Geraghty reports that Mike Huckabee recently signed an endorsement deal in which he “rips [the] ‘mainstream medical community'” on behalf of a shady diabetes product. From the description, he would appear to be implicitly but very clearly urging diabetics not to avail themselves of the medical care they need:

Prescription drugs aren’t going to cure you. They’re only going to keep you a loyal pill-popping, finger-pricking, insulin-shooting customer so Big Pharma and the mainstream medical community can rake in over $100 billion annually.
Shameless and disgusting if done at any time. Done while publicly declaring that he’s “leaning towards” running for president? “Everybody grab a broom!” (Major content warning at that link.)

The Ongoing Problem of Legitimacy

Once again, the left is saying to the Chief Justice, “nice little Supreme Court you got here. Too bad if anything was to happen to it.” Only 5-4 decisions for the outcomes the  left like — like NFIB v. Sebelius – are “legitimate.” 5-4 decisions the other way imperil “the court itself.” By making this a personal appeal to Chief Justice Roberts, either to side with them or pay a political price, they once again risk tainting a ruling in their favor as being based on the very political considerations they themselves urge upon the Chief Justice. And the outcome of the last case has only encouraged them to run this play as long as it appears to work.

(source: Lobbying the Chief Justice (again) – The Washington Post)

Once the nihilists start winning, we all start losing.  You have to know how to refuse the Vandals outside the gates, or you’re stuck with ‘em (just ask Leo about Genseric).  Even Danegeld is better than inviting Hengist and Horsa over for dinner.

Against Papal Ninjas

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Your honor, I rise in opposition to papal ninjas.

Peter insists that in spite of jocularity he has a serious point, so I will insist on taking it seriously. One of the major problems with Roman ecclesiology – and with the ecclesiologies of many Protestants and Orthodox as well! – is that it requires the institutional church to be two things at the same time that no institution can be at the same time: the conscience of Christendom and a political authority. The reason no institution can be both at the same time is because all political authorities are constantly involved, for reasons of state, in a variety of hypocrisies and shenanigans. (For a scholarly analysis of the reasons why political authority necessarily involves this kind of thing, see Batman.)

It is not my purpose today to emphasize the intrinsic impossibility of this juxtaposition. Whether or not it could ever be done, the more important point is that it never has, in fact, been done. And for a long time this caused no end of trouble.

But it has not caused trouble in Rome in recent times. The Vatican has blessed the whole world and empowered itself as a moral voice by recusing itself – mostly voluntarily – from the role of political authority. For obvious reasons it cannot formally renounce its claim to have the right to play that role. But in the 20th century it has wisely chosen not to press that claim, and as a result it has emerged as a global moral authority on an unprecedented scale.

Today, there are more and more Catholics and Protestants who, under the influence of Alasdair MacIntyre and other deadly enemies of brotherly love, want to go back to the old way. They long once again for the impossible dream of the institution that will be both prophet and king. And none of them, in my experience, is even beginning to think about the monstrous consequences that would result.

I recently sat in an academic seminar and listed to a respectable Catholic intellectual express the view that he would like to see all non-Catholics forcibly torn out of their homes and expelled from their communities. He insisted that this could be accomplished without putting people in prison or violent confrontation. I hear more and more of this sort of irresponsible thinking.

Papal ninjas would be a first step on a very dangerous road.

Serious (but made me laugh anyway)

Robert Royal notes that a need to deal with actual violent threats means considering the relationship between moral and spiritual aims and secular force:

We need action on multiple fronts: diplomatic, ideological, social. But the clearest signal the West could send at the moment would be to put a contingent of special forces on the ground (preferably with, but if necessary without, Arab allies), drive ISIS out of Mosul, and keep it out. A military reversal of that magnitude would eliminate a fair bit of ISIS’s current glamour and open up a space for the longer-term soft approaches.

(source: Defending “Rome” – The Catholic Thing)

…and, of course, that’s not something that the Vatican seems to be very good at, these days.  But I can’t help myself; this makes me think of a favorite bit of half-serious whimsy Continue reading

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