Thanksgiving Day ramblings

    1. A prophetic finger held to the wind.
    2. So far Left he’s Right.
    3. Is “Pro-life” now a wholly-owned GOP subsidiary?


That good thing which was committed to you, keep by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.

(Apostle Paul to Bishop Timothy, 2 Tim. 1:14)

Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle.

(Apostle Paul to the Christians at Thessalonica, 2 Thess. 2:15)

Whatever the motivation for voting yesterday, whatever the theological principle on which people acted and spoke, the fact remains that a great deal of this discussion is not intelligible to our wider society. Worse than that, it seems as if we are wilfully blind to some of the trends and priorities of that wider society … We have some explaining to do, we have as a result of yesterday undoubtedly lost a measure of credibility in our society.

Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams to recalcitrant Anglican laity who stood fast and kept the good thing committed to them when their betters wanted to pander to the “wider society.” (H/T Orthodoxy & Heterodoxy)

I don’t know the Anglicans as Rowan Williams knows the Anglicans, but may I suggest that if it allows women Bishops, the “wider society” will despise the Church of England for having a sexist history, or for being clearly human instead of divine, or for having its finger to the wind, or something else. If it continues to refuse women Bishops, the “wider society” will despise it for being backward.

Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. Evidence never demands a verdict.

Why not worry about explaining your decision at the Last Judgment?


Jim Schutze, a Dallas liberal, recognizes the common ground between him and the CrunchyCon/Front Porch Republic types:

All of the people in Dallas today that I associate with the city’s better future — the preservationists in the Angela Hunt constituency in East Dallas, the new-urban Scott Griggs people in Oak Cliff, the civic responsibility folks who vote for Sandy Greyson in North Dallas and the pull-up-your-damn-pants-and-get-a-job people who vote for Dwaine Caraway in Southern Dallas — they all operate out of what could and maybe should be viewed as a very conservative moral base.

They all have this in common: They don’t trust big government to give them good lives, nor do they trust Sheldon Adelson or the Koch brothers. What they share is a kind of retro faith in personal and mutual civic responsibility. I assume the Ayn Rand crazies scare them as much as they scare me.

This is a glimmer of hope. Amen.


In an interview with CBS News at the beginning of the convention week, Governor Romney disagreed with our party’s proposed platform and revealed that he favored legalized abortion in the cases of “rape and incest and the health and life of the mother.”  The health exception is well known as a large loophole.  It can mean physical, mental, or emotional health. This was the loophole used for “therapeutic” state abortion law changes in the late 1960s, including California and New York.  This was the loophole favored by liberal Republican/Planned Parenthood types like Romney’s parents and Romney himself during the pre-Roe period.

In the 1990s, Mitt Romney was still an abortion enthusiast.  By August 2012, he was posing as an opponent, but he couldn’t keep his words straight.  Smiling, Romney told CBS that the Democrats try to make abortion a political issue but he didn’t see it as such.  Instead, it’s “a matter in the courts” and “it’s been settled for some time in the courts.”  Not exactly a rallying cry for the anti-abortion movement.

Jeff Taylor, What’s Wrong with the Republican Party? (There’s much more in Taylor’s article than what I’m going to focus on, by the way. It’s well worth reading if you’re conservative and your blood pressure’s running low.)

By the time of the GOP’s “week-long infomercial for the presidential nominee,” I was fairly well resolved that I would not be voting for Romney, so I overlooked this bit of cumulative evidence of Romney’s pusillanimity at the time. I note it now mostly because a very prominent Hoosier “pro-life” leader was puzzlingly in the tank for Romney years ago, and because National Right to Life showed no qualms about him. That leader’s commitment to the party over pro-life principle has long been an unspoken source of tension between us, at least from my side.

I am almost certain that when the Supreme Court gets out of the way, the political processes are going to give me at best half-a-loaf, and will smack down pro-life principle completely in, say, California.

But one can hope for a change of culture, for abortion becoming unthinkable. Romney’s approach seems to be pre-emptive surrender to the current zeitgeist. But what do you really expect from the GOP these days anyway?

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Some succinct standing advice on recurring themes.