Thursday, January 05, 2012

Ann Coulter ... Anti-Catholic Bigot [UPDATED]

Coulter's attempt to tar the surging Rick Santorum in order to prop up a REAL big government liberal, Dullard Flip Rino, provides a near-perfect insight into why I have always despised the faux-conservative shrew and what it is I have always admired about Rick Santorum:
... Santorum is not as conservative as his social-issues credentials suggest. He is more of a Catholic than a conservative [ED: Apparently, being "more of a Catholic" - i.e. taking one's faith seriously - is supposed to be a bad thing.], which means he's good on 60 percent of the issues [ED.: Got that? Being Catholic automatically means being "wrong" on 40% of the issues in the mind of Coulter. At least she's honest about her bigotry.], but bad on others, such as big government social programs. He'd be Ted Kennedy if he didn't believe in God. [ED.: Yeah, that Santorum is JUST LIKE Ted Kennedy. Wait. What could the conservative Santorum POSSIBLY have in common with the uber-liberal late Ted Kennedy? Oh yeah. That whole Catholicism thingy - being beholden to the Pope, or something like that. Any doubts about how Coulter feels about Catholics now?]

Santorum may not be a big spender as far as professional politicians go [ED.: Or, for that matter, as far as your big-government, health-care mandating RINO boy, Dullard Flip Rino, goes.], but he is still a professional politician. In 2005, one of his former aides described him as "a Catholic missionary who happens to be in the Senate." [ED.: I, for one, think the Senate could use a few more such statesmen who are committed to renewing our culture, promoting virtue and traditional family values, and prizing service to others in the common good. Apparently, these things have no place in the selfishly individualistic, objectivist AynRandland that Coulter envisions for our society.]

The Catholic missionary was fantastic on issues like partial-birth abortion, but more like a Catholic bishop [ED.: Ah, there we go. What anti-Catholic screed would be complete without a few shots at the hierarchy in the form of Bishop-bashing?] in his support for No Child Left Behind, the Medicare drug entitlement program (now costing taxpayers more than $60 billion a year), and a highway bill with a Christmas tree of earmarks, including the famous "bridge to nowhere." [ED.: I was unaware that the Bishops had taken a formal position in support of any of these measures. Not sure they've really taken much of an interest in Alaska road projects, for example. But why let that get in the way of slapping the Bishops around?]

Santorum cites his father's admonition to put any extra money in the poor box at church to explain his wanting to use the federal government to help the poor. [ED.: Coulter apparently forgets that it was Santorum's desire to help the poor that led him to the position of Senate floor manager for the Welfare Reform bill that passed in the mid-90s. He recognized the perverse incentives that actually HURT the poor rather than help them that the previous welfare regime represented. Who else in the Senate was more instrumental than Santorum in shepherding welfare reform into law? No one. So, what's Coulter's problem, then, with Santorum's record on helping the poor? It's probably just that the poor can just "eat cake" to objectivists like Antoinette Coulter.]

You get only one or two big issues in a presidential campaign. But in the middle of the second Great Depression [ED.: A little hyperbolic, don't you think?], Santorum is on the campaign trail saying, "The reason I ran is 'cause I think people know there is more than just a little narrow issue called 'jobs.'"

Actually, this year, it's pretty much just jobs...
[ED.: Yes, please stop bothering us about such things as icky dead babies, protection of the family as the basic societal unit, and just plain old human decency.]
(emphasis and editorial commentary added)

My Comments:
I'd tell Coulter to go to hell, but it looks like she's doing a fine enough job paving her road to the nether regions without my having to offer the suggestion.


UPDATE
Looks like Coulter has just breathed new life into the Rosie Award®


UPDATE #2
Given the prominence of Coulter as one of the more vocal commentators advocating on their behalf, I'd say that both Romney (not a stranger to religious bigotry aimed his way) and Chris Christie (himself a Catholic) have some obligation to slap Coulter down for this B.S.


UPDATE #3
Fr. Z's take on Coulter's column.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

30 Comments:

At 1/05/2012 3:13 PM, Blogger Patrick Archbold said...

in his support for No Child Left Behind, the Medicare drug entitlement program (now costing taxpayers more than $60 billion a year), and a highway bill with a Christmas tree of earmarks, including the famous "bridge to nowhere."

Yeah, you know what you call all that stuff? The Bush agenda. Not in favor of all of it, buy maybe Bush is closet Bishop too.

 
At 1/05/2012 3:30 PM, Blogger Paul Zummo said...

What little shred of credibility she had with me has vanished completely over the past couple of months.

 
At 1/05/2012 4:02 PM, Blogger Instaurare said...

The bishops actively lobbied against Welfare reform, by the way.

 
At 1/05/2012 10:00 PM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

"The bishops actively lobbied against Welfare reform, by the way."

So, then, Coulter is wrong about Santorum's Catholicism making him "wrong" on such matters. It's proof that being Catholic doesn't necessarily mean following every wrong-headed initiative of the USCCB.

 
At 1/05/2012 10:14 PM, Blogger Tom Ryan said...

Maybe Santorum can get the Likud nomination if he fails to get the Republican/neo-con nod.

http://www.culturewars.com/2007/Santorum.html

 
At 1/05/2012 10:55 PM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

I have stated on numerous occasions my objections to Santorum's Wilsonian foreign-policy adventurism. But this post isn't really about any of that, is it?

And yet, here come the Ron Paul supporters injecting yet another nonsequitur into the conversation. Look, I like Ron Paul. And I don't like the way many are dismissing him and his views as "kooky" or "crazy". He has a good deal to offer to the conversation.

But his supporters do him no favors by swarming every post about Santorum and making such asinine comments as "Maybe Santorum can get the Likud nomination ..." C'mon. That adds nothing but vitriol to the conversation, something I'm beginning to become convinced is all the Paul supporters have to offer.

 
At 1/06/2012 5:34 AM, OpenID nik said...

f

 
At 1/06/2012 6:26 AM, OpenID nik said...

As a Christian, you are supposed to be honest and fair. Misconstruing what Coulter said because she pointed out the political faults of someone you support is a staggering violation of the Christian ethic. To take your 9 comments/criticisms of her article one by one... 1) She didn't say being a Catholic and taking it seriously was bad. She was making the point that being a devout Catholic in and of itself carries with it the adoption of a number of Conservative beliefs, but not all of them. On the issues where Santorum's Catholicism dictates that he take a Conservative position, he takes it. In those areas where it does not, he does not. And he does not as a matter of his own personal choice having nothing to do with the Catholic faith. That is the point. 2) She didn't say being Catholic meant he was automatically wrong on 40%. She said being a serious Catholic only guaranteed that he was right on 60%. The remaining 40% has nothing to do with Catholicism. Therefore a serious Catholic may be right or wrong on the issues contained in that 40%. Santorum is wrong on most of those issues. That is her point. 3) She compared a serious Catholic (Santorum) to a non-serious Catholic (Kennedy). The point being on those 40% of the issues previously mentioned, Santorum and Kennedy are in agreement. And but for him taking his Catholic faith seriously, Santorum might have proved himself just as wrong on the other 60% as Kennedy was.

 
At 1/06/2012 6:27 AM, OpenID nik said...

4) This is not an accurate statement of Mitt Romney in my opinion, but you are entitled to it, and are not intentionally misconstruing what Coulter says for a change, so I have no further comment on it. 5) Her point being that Santorum is once again defined not by his Conservatism or even his Christianity, but his devotion to the Catholic Church singularly. And I can think of no occasion where Ann Coulter has ever cited even Ayn Rand's name in my reading. I'm sure she has, but that fact that I can't recall it ever coming up means that it does not occur with any frequency. Rand was brilliant to a point, but most religious Conservatives are well aware of the issues she had, and so regard her work with all due skepticism. 6) The Catholic hierarchy in this country tilts to the left politically, as evidenced by their parishioners' voting patterns as well as their own public statements. Santorum voted like the majority of Catholic bishops would have on these spending bills she mentioned. That is not economically Conservative. 7) Santorum should get the lion's share of the credit for welfare reform? Only in Rick Santorum's own carefully inflated version of his role in those events. And I think Ann Coulter would be thrilled to pieces that you pay her the great compliment of likening her to Marie Antoinette, as anyone with a rudimentary understanding of the French Revolution would be. As to the question of what Coulter's problem is with Santorum wanting to have big government take care of people via broad spectrum social programs? I guess if you have to ask, you'll never know... 8) Hyperbole is a valid rhetorical tool. And some would argue that given the current economic situation in this country, there isn't much hyperbole to it at all.

 
At 1/06/2012 6:28 AM, OpenID nik said...

9) You actually seem to suggest that Coulter does not care about the issue of abortion. This charge is so contrary to all available evidence that a rebuttal of such a self-evident matter would be a waste of my time. As to jobs being the central issue of the campaign, any pundit worth his salt can tell you that job creation will be the overriding issue of the 2012 campaign. Lastly, I would just say that in your final remarks you talk about Coulter going to hell. Admonishing you with Christ's words that you judge not would be pointless. As would his admonishment that you speak good of those who speak evil of you (even though Coulter has not spoken evil of any Catholic, I think the basic principle would still apply). So I will just make two final points. In her last book, Coulter specifically criticizes "redneck anti-papists" in the South, who voted for a segregationist in one presidential election just because they were afraid of one party's Catholic nominee. Hardly a point to be made by a Catholic hater. Secondly, Coulter's own father was Catholic, and just this very week marked the fourth anniversary of his death. It seems strange that she would mock the religion of her beloved father on this of all weeks. Of course, she didn't. Shame on you.

 
At 1/06/2012 10:37 AM, Blogger Kurt said...

I think both Coulter and your rhetoric are over the top.

But, in essense, Ann Coulter is a secular conservative. She finds that secular conservatism agrees with the public policy positions of the Catholic Church about 60% of the time (I think she is being generous). Therefore, she finds soemoen who is Catholic first, conservative second to be a politican she thinks is wrong on public policy matters at least 40% of the time.

Now just calm down a little.

 
At 1/06/2012 11:08 AM, Blogger Dymphna said...

I don't think Ann Coulter is an anti Catholic bigot. She's saying that Rick is a nice man, a good Catholic but he's not what we need for a president and if you look at his voting record he's not all that his supporters are raising him up to be. Seems pretty reasonable.

 
At 1/06/2012 11:11 AM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

"Now just calm down a little."

Get over yourself, Kurt. Don't come to my blog telling me to "calm down" when you have absolutely no knowledge of my level of "calmness" either at the time I wrote this or now. I've remained perfectly "calm" since reading Coulter's piece, notwithstanding my profound disagreement with it.

 
At 1/06/2012 11:54 AM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

"I don't think Ann Coulter is an anti Catholic bigot. She's saying that Rick is a nice man, a good Catholic but he's not what we need for a president and if you look at his voting record he's not all that his supporters are raising him up to be. Seems pretty reasonable."

Then why, Dymphna, did Coulter even feel the need to bring up his Catholicism. If he's wrong on particular issues, then she should explain why he is wrong. She didn't even bother to do that - she merely mentioned some issues that allegedly are inconsistent with "conservatism" and rather than explaining how Santorum's position makes him less appealing from a "conservative" standpoint than Romney's big-government positions, she instead dragged in the Catholic Bishops and Ted Kennedy.

What do they have to do with anything? Santorum's faith need not be mentioned as all as being disqualifying from a conservative standpoint - if he's deficient on issues of importance to conservatives, then all Coulter needed to do is explain in detail where Santorum has gone off the rails and why these alleged detours from "conservative" orthodoxy are disqualifying (or at the very least why they're any more disqualifying than Romneycare and "I'm a pro-choice candidate.")

Do you see what I'm saying? The mention of Catholicism is a complete red herring to Coulter's objections to Santorum's alleged lack of conservative credentials on some of the issues. So why mention it? There's no reason to go there. Either Santorum is right on the issues or he's not. But to make a blanket statement that being a serious Catholic automatically makes one "good" on 60% of the issues and therefore automatically "bad" on the other 40% is nothing less than saying "serious Catholics need not apply".

 
At 1/06/2012 11:58 AM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

The 60-40 comment is also bigoted because it assumes that there are lockstep "Catholic" positions that every Catholic is supposed to fall in line with in order to be a "serious Catholic". And that's obviously just not the case.

 
At 1/06/2012 4:33 PM, Blogger Kurt said...

Then why...did Coulter even feel the need to bring up his Catholicism. If he's wrong on particular issues, then she should explain why he is wrong.

From reflection on principles of the Catholic faith and the social teachings of the Bishops (notice I am not saying "as ordered to by the Episcopate" or "as required by Catholicism."), Santorum has arrived at certain conclusions at odds with orthodox conservatism.

I'm saying nicer than Ann Coulter (admittedly being nicer than Coulter is not much of a task).

You got a whole blog on the intersection of politics and the Catholic religion. You can hardly damn someone else from connecting the two.

 
At 1/07/2012 4:04 AM, Blogger Louie Rhett said...

Gotta say: Santorum bugs the heck out of me, and I'm a practicing, conservative Catholic, too.

Coulter's invective is over-the-top, but she's got one thing right about our Church's leadership: the bishops' (including the Bishop of Rome) politics are not conservative enough. Fortunately, they're not politicians, so in their areas of genuine expertise, this flaw is not a huge problem.

Our bishops -- all of them including BJP2 -- have placed too much trust in welfare-state non-solutions to poverty and injustice, and they should know better. The best way to help the poor is to eliminate every single welfare program and entitlement program and reduce government revenues (you know, taxes). The federal government cannot oversee charity across the nation nearly as well as localities can, and localities that have communities with strong charitable inclinations should defer to the churches and synagogues and private charities. If Santorum voted to increase the federal entitlement state, then he's got the same problem. Note that he's in copious company if not good company. No one in this country who's running for national office appears to be serious about saving the country from it's Sisyphean debt problems.

It sounds to me reading your post as though you think Santorum's Catholicism makes him a better candidate. You are combining your faith and your politics in making a political evaluation, which I think is a mistake. Santorum's Catholicism makes him a better person and citizen (we hope) of the Kingdom of God. We'd like to see the U.S. thrive -- I think it's better for everyone in the whole world if the U.S. thrives -- but the better candidate is always the one who can win, not the one who agrees with you. In that regard, I'm afraid the Republicans still haven't found a better candidate than Obama. I'm sure you and I have both prayed that they would do better -- but they haven't, and we're all going to pay for it literally and spiritually for four more years. I'd love to see Santorum (or anyone else on the Republican palette) succeed Obama in 2013, but it just isn't in these cards. Things just aren't bad enough yet to convince people he has to go.

I'm afraid the commenter above is correct: you need to blunt your reaction to Coulter if you intend to defend the faith. You're not going to have any kind of positive effect by adding your own vitriol to the stew, and calling her names does exactly zero good.

 
At 1/07/2012 10:35 AM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

Actually, I'm not even all that big a fan of Santorum. I USED to be, but not so much any more.

My complaint about Coulter's piece is that she draws some wrong conclusions about what being a faithful Catholic in the public square means, and then says - based on her faulty observations - that one is therefore disqualified from receiving the support of "conservatives".

An example of where Coulter is completely off base: she says that Santorum acted like a Catholic Bishop in voting for the wasteful Bridge to Nowhere. What do the Bishops have to do with some boondoggle like that? How is Santorum "like the Bishops" when he is being wasteful? Does that clarify my problem with Coulter's piece? She's drawing incorrect and unduly negative conclusions about what it means to be Catholic or to be in tune with the Bishops and saying that Santorum's allegedly wasteful ways are BECAUSE he is a Catholic.

As far as my having a blog about the intersection of faith and politics and drawing the connection between the two, again, I have no problem with someone pointing out Santorum or anyone else's Catholic faith and how that relates to his activities in the public square. What I have a problem with is when someone makes the connection when it is inapt or tenuous at best and then makes blanket negative pronouncements about what being a faithful Catholic in the public square means and then essentially says "Don't vote for this guy because he's too Catholic."

 
At 1/08/2012 8:10 AM, Blogger HermitTalker said...

Decades ago when I worked and lived in the USA I challenged journalists who identified Catholic politicians or candidates on different issues while Protestants were not. That comes from the old bias that Catholics are under orders to say, believe and vote as the Pope tells them, and now since the activity of their bishops' conferences what they decide. There are two main principles at work (1) The Natural Law, endorsed by the US Preamble to the Constitution, acknowledges there are God-given rights which are inalienable, not the province of Government, Courts or Presidents. The Church as proclaimer of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, has no choice except to proclaim what is given by God, already established in Genesis, "Made in His image."
(2) Principles of Justice for a fair and decent society living in peaceful harmony must be proclaimed. The "rubber meets the road" in applying them and this is where a clear distinction needs to be made. Bishops have as little right to decide if a bridge goes to nownhere in decreeing that people on public assistance need $xyz dollars a month. There are given principles of what is right or wrong but several areas where some principles must be applied. JP11 sent a cardinal friend of the Bush family to lobby against startring #2 Iraq war, many Catholic politicians and citizens backed the war, in paret because of false data about WsMD. 8.5 years later we see its horrible cost. It is easier in a European nation where the winning government in power has more control over budget matters than in the US where there are two branhes of Congress and a POTUS who can be of the party that does not control the House. Separation of powers causes some concerns also- a State law can be sruck down by a federal judge in the US and finally decided by the Supreme Court. Judging a candidate for POTUS based on abortion does not end abortion if he/she wins the State or White House, and it may harm other moral values and principles. Thus not an easy one to call, as bishops have been accused of urging a vote for the GOP in recent elections when they decied that practically, politically, abortion was fundamental. In practice it may not be given the constitutional separation of powers and the role of the Supreme Court. Whether it is the most important issue is a totally different moral question in the abstract, it is, "among these inalienable rigths is LIFE.

 
At 1/08/2012 9:26 AM, Blogger Lizzie said...

Wow! I have never cared for the words that come out of Ann Coulter's mouth, or the policies that come from Romney's politics. But I do care for the teachings of Christ and the Catholic Church. One of the most important ones is Love your enemies. Maybe you should spend less time calling her names and more time praying for her.

 
At 1/08/2012 7:39 PM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

I confess to being every bit as guilty as Ms. Coulter (and probably moreso) of not living up to what my faith demands. Maybe you could pray for me, Lizzie.

 
At 1/09/2012 5:13 AM, Blogger Micha Elyi said...

Nice try, Jay Anderson, but if the object of your screed was really an "anti-Catholic bigot" then Speaker Gingrich would have been bashed for his Catholicism too. And he wasn't.

Your real complaint is that Miss Coulter is more familiar with the USCCB's political agenda than you'd like. Sure, the elevation of Archbishop Dolan to USCCB President is a sign that a reformation has begun but more reform and more time is required before the USCCB's reputation as an arm of the Kennedy/Leftist Democrat politcal agenda is scrubbed away. (Let us know when the USCCB purges the Catholic Campaign for Human Development of all involvement with anti-Christian and pro-abortion groups.)

 
At 1/09/2012 2:13 PM, Blogger poeta said...

Editor: I trust you are unaware of the British slang meaning of "bishop-bashing"? (Or perhaps not?...)

 
At 1/09/2012 2:18 PM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

Was unaware that there was any other sense of the term than the way American Catholics use it to describe verbal attacks on the Bishops by Catholics and non-Catholics alike.

 
At 1/09/2012 2:19 PM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

Of course, in America, "shag" is a term that describes a dance popular in coastal South Carolina.

 
At 1/09/2012 4:05 PM, Blogger Lagniappe said...

Ann Coulter can talk circles around any liberal and most conservatives. The abomination you hurl as a proper blog or post is anything but charitable. Catholics are so touchy -- "I'm the victim!" Grow up. America, despite your scatological language is not gong to turn a candidate away solely on their religious preference.

Abortion, social justice (as you define), and other social issues will mostly be upheld by any "other than Obama" candidate. Santorium volunteered to be a candidate -- and it is never clean, fair, pleasant, etc.
My take is that the anti-catholic issue is a cover to make your version of social justice the preeminent message. If the economy stays as is or worsens, America, as we know it, is looking at the precipice and one step of walking into the abyss.

Clear your head before you rant and rave over such matters.

 
At 1/09/2012 4:45 PM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

"... and it is never clean, fair, pleasant, etc ..."

Neither is political blogging. I'm sure my "ranting and raving" registers not a blip on Coulter's radar.

She's a big girl, and can take as good as she gives. If only her defenders could, as well.

 
At 1/09/2012 5:48 PM, Blogger DP said...

"She's a big girl, and can take as good as she gives. If only her defenders could, as well."

That's the peril of letting your favorite pundit or politico do your thinking for you: you stop thinking for yourself, and start aping their flaws.

 
At 1/09/2012 6:20 PM, Blogger eMuse said...

As someone who keeps up with Coulter's columns, I agree with some of the others that you've misunderstood her points. For one thing, remember that this is an opinion piece, loaded with Coulter's typical sarcasm and hyperbole (I might add that many readers fail to pick up on this). If she wants to describe Santorum in regards to his Catholicism then that is fine. Yes, she is putting in a few "digs" at Catholic bishops and American Catholicism as general, but at the segment that supports liberal social policies. You can't claim that there aren't quite a few liberal Catholics out there--and we've all heard of the liberal bishops.

Your own dig at her line that "this year, it's pretty much just jobs" just seems odd to me. Well, yes, you are correct that elections are always about more than just jobs...but right now the economic downturn is indeed prompting the political focus to be on jobs. That's what she means...and there's no reason to find that offensive.

Coulter, one of the nation's most vocal conservatives and one who strongly opposes abortion and gay marriage, is the last person to be bigoted against the last major stronghold against such liberal causes.

 
At 1/10/2012 7:51 PM, Blogger Kurt said...

the elevation of Archbishop Dolan to USCCB President is a sign that a reformation has begun but more reform and more time is required before the USCCB's reputation as an arm of the Kennedy/Leftist Democrat politcal agenda is scrubbed away. (Let us know when the USCCB purges the Catholic Campaign for Human Development...

Dolan is a big promoter of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (as well as a big promoter of labor unions)

 

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