Just Another Hack
At The American Spectator, Mark Judge passes judgment on The Washington Post's lefty columnist E.J. Dionne:
What happened to E.J. Dionne? Dionne, a liberal columnist for the Washington Post and Catholic intellectual, has become a representative of arguably the most serious problem with the left: the refusal to engage arguments from the other side. This leads to arguments that are repetitive, propagandistic, and frequently unmoored from reason and common sense. And in Dionne's case, it didn't have to be this way. He was once one of America's most interesting journalists.(Hat tip: Brian Saint-Paul at Inside Catholic)
In the journey from journalist to dogmatist, Dionne has become a shrill and predictable writer. He has traded the integrity of the investigative journalist and intellectual for the frisson of the propagandist. This is especially dispiriting because Dionne is a Catholic. What has made writing by Catholics from G.K. Chesterton to Anne Rice so compelling is the tension between reason and political correctness, between the natural law and modernism. The natural law, Catholics believe, is the law that the conscience dictates -- the law that tells everyone, regardless of who they are or where they live, that rape and murder are intrinsically evil. According to St. Ambrose, who is quoted in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the conscience is "God's herald and messenger," guiding human beings about right and wrong. And while the conscience is a proper guide, Catholics also believe that it also needs to be developed; this is done by adhering to the Gospels and the teachings of the Church. Catholics further believe that God has revealed himself through human reason. In Dionne's early writing this tension was evident, and made for compelling reading. A good liberal, he was willing to call America on racism, excessive capitalism, and anti-government zealotry. A reasonable man and faithful Catholic, he was equally able to challenge the left on reverse racism, condescension towards working class whites, and abortion fanaticism. Now he's just another hack.
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