Being called "crazy" by Michael Sean Winters is like being called a "heretic" by his employer, the National Catholic Reporter—if that particular publication ever admitted the existence of heresy. Such accusations lack gravitas and authenticity; they also come across as a bit, well, crazy:
Those who are prone to conspiratorial explanations of phenomenon tend to be, well, a little bit crazy. And, their craziness is not only intellectual, it is moral.
How else to explain this bizarre article at the Catholic World Report anout the "Nuns on the Bus" tour being linked with financier George Soros. Soros, you see, gave money to the Center for American Progress. The Center for American Progress played a role, not clear what role from this diatribe, in the foundation of the group Faith in Public Life. The group Faith in Public Life apparently was one of the groups that the nuns at NETWORK met with when the idea of having a bus tour was hatched. Q.E.D. Sr. Simone might as well have been caught sitting in Soros' lap! And all for the sake of publicity! The horror. Except that, in a democracy, publicity is not a bad thing, is it? What is so different about the bus tour from the pamphlet "Common Sense"? And, in American democracy today, the idea of trying to garner publicity for the plight of the poor by means of a bus rental is almost quaint, at least when compared to the gobs of money making its way onto the airwaves via the SuperPACs.
And, so what if Sr. Simone had cashed a check direct from Soros? Where did this demonization of Soros begin? I may not agree with all of his politics, but the man has used a considerable amount of his considerable fortune to promote civil society and democratic norms and independent journalism in the countries ravaged by Communism. Is that such a bad thing? I deplore some of his positions, especially his support for euthanasia, but that cannot undo all the good he has done. Ignoring the good, and only emphasizing the bad is, tarring everyone with an association with an indictment, this sort of conpiratorial think is, as I say, crazy.
Folks can read my post and judge its level of intellectual and moral craziness for themselves. For my part, I'm unclear what Winters means by "moral craziness"; is he actually accusing me of a specific depravity, evil, and sin? Or inclination to the same? (I know he believes in sin: it is any action or thought issuing forth from what he calls "Catholic neo-cons".) Perhaps I missed the memo about going easy (as the mainstream media does) on an atheist billionaire who has been convicted of insider trading in France, and who supports a number of dissenting, progressive Catholic groups, some of which are openly pro-abortion, such as Catholics For Choice. And how, for goodness sake, does my post qualify as "conspiratorial"? Especially since Soros's political and social stances are fairly well-known and his support of causes and groups in opposition to Church teaching and authority are equally evident?
Well, I would spend more time analyzing it, but over the years I've learned that analyzing the "logic" of Winters' posts and articles is like looking for a melody and a sax solo in a Sex Pistols "song". Besides, it is obvious Winters knows that his core readership of catechesis-challenged Catholics will dutifully come running when he throws out the "crazy" label. Having penned the post, "Conspiratorial Craziness" (see above) about myself and CWR on July 11th, he quickly followed up with a post titled "More Conspiratorial Craziness" on the same day: