Saturday, April 19, 2008

A doozie of a quote

No, I am not going to post something original. I am going to pull a Father V. and post something I have not written in the hope of getting credit for it. A true 19th Century American Capitalist am I! Oh, for those of you who do not know, Father V. is a priest who has a much trafficked MySpace page and is under the unfortunate delusion that the obvious neo-con tool Father Richard John Neuhaus is an orthodox Catholic. And a person whom I like to bait now and then.

Anyhow, I really should post something original, but the earthquake that woke me up at four-thirty yesterfuckingmorn so discombobulated me that I am now a blob of anxiety and panic, so much so that I fear coherent thought, without which one should not write (unless, of course, you are a speechwriter for Our Dear Leader), has escaped me. The earthquake, in fact, caused me so much consternation that I thought the Rapture was going to happen any second, and so, applying the logic of Pascal's Wager to the dire circumstances, I said the Evangelical Version of the Jesus Prayer and became a Protestant. Well, nothing happened. I was going to be Left Behind, made to endure all of the bowl plagues, the trumpet plagues, and Jerry B. Jenkins's really cheesy dialogue. In my fevered desperation I grabbed one of those little Evangelical apologetics booklets that some random prosyletizer once handed me years ago, flipped to the back page where it asks the reader to say the Jesus Prayer and then give his signature and the date of his salvation. I said the Jesus Prayer again, signed my name and hurriedly penciled in both the date and time of my being once saved, always saved. There, I thought, it's official. I sealed the deal. Now if Christ doesn't rapture me, I at least have documention for a lawsuit. Still nothing happened. But later on I found out that John Hagee is still on earth. So, the Rapture did not happen. I worried for nothing, and now I am officially a Protestant. Now I have to get a bad haircut and do the wave to "Awesome God". Shit!

But, again as is my wont, I digress. Sorry. I wanted to write something in response to this irresponsible caca that makes the case for Bush being our first real Catholic President, even though he is as Protestant as Elmer Gantry. The argument goes likes this: Kennedy was only a nominal Catholic who made a strict separation between his duties as a civil servant and his private Catholic life (which was not all that Catholic). Bush, on the other hand, surrounds himself with Catholic Intellectuals (like Michael Novak who has scolded Catholics for not being receptive to the atheistic and solipsistic philosophy of David Hume) and applies Catholic Doctrine in his formulation of policy. Yeah, like lying us into war, implementing secret tribunals, and giving the greenlight to torture. We Catholics have yet to live down the Crusades or Torquemada. I am really sure that George W. Bush as the first Catholic President will just be one fucking huge PR Bonanza for Rome.

Oh, yeah, the quote. It's from Wendell Berry's scathing attack ("Faustian Economics") on American Capitalism and The American Way of Life in the current issue of Harper's. Mr. Berry's point of departure is that the American Experiment is predicated upon the Lockean notion that limitless acquisitiveness (which normal people call greed and the scholastic sages classified as the deadly sin of gluttony) is actually salubrious for social order. Mr. Berry begs to differ. The Magisterium of the "Catholic" neo-cons (Neuhaus, Novak, and Weigel) has deemed Mr. Berry's point of departure a heresy, I should note. America was not based on Locke, they repeat and repeat, hoping with Goebbels that repetition produces truth. Well, fine, anything that the unholy trinity condemns as heresy must be a good read, and I heartily recommend the reading of this eloquent and trenchant piece by Mr. Berry. By the way, here is the quote that jumped out at me. I could not have put it better or more wickedly myself:
In keeping with our unrestrained consumptiveness, the commonly accepted basis of our economy is the supposed possibility of limitless growth, limitless wants, limitless natural resources, limitless energy, and limitless debt. The idea of a limitless economy implies and requires a doctrine of general human limitlessness: all are entitled to pursue without limit whatever they conceive as desirable--a license that classifies the most exalted Christian capitalist with the lowliest pornographer. [Emphasis in the original]

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