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Anti-Catholicism & The Founders


With Glenn Beck and the Tea Party crowd constantly invoking the Founders, it would be nice to see then discuss the role that virulent anti-Catholicism played in the lead up to the American Revolution. In the event, the Founders were able to transcend their anti-Catholic bigotry, but the bigotry of the Tea Party crowd seen in the anti-mosque effort and their hysteria about the imminent threat to American liberties posed by sharia, to say nothing of the racist bigotry of the anti-immigrant advocates (are these the same groups?), remains among the grass roots of the movement – you will pardon the expression – a point of honor.

Obama's Speech


I admit it – I hate Oval Office speeches. I hate the inevitable references to “limitless possibilities,” especially at the end of a decade that showed the very obvious limits to our possibilities, both at home and abroad. I understand that the President needs to be a cheerleader for the nation, but I don’t have to like it.

The President’s opening and closing were especially strong. The speech was the first time, in a long time, that he painted a “big picture,” saying how his many policies fit together, remaking the social compact at home and our priorities abroad, and the relationship between the two. He called on all citizens to emulate our veterans in coming together to pursue the common good, and praised the men and women of the Armed Forces in appropriately fulsome language. He pointed out that we spent a trillion dollars in Iraq, none of it paid for at the time, or even budgeted, making it at least a bit more difficult for Republicans to complain about his stimulus spending in Boston when they just spent so much in Baghdad.

Clooney & Catholicism


In accepting a humanitarian award at the Emmy’s the other night, actor George Clooney said that while he recognized and applauded the way we Americans, and specifically, the artistic community, responds with open hearts and open wallets to catastrophes around the world, we need to do a better job after the cameras leave and the headlines change. He said something to the effect that we need to do a better job five years and seven years after a catastrophe.


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In This Issue

July 18-31, 2014


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