Breitbart: CNN Mistreats the Poor, Downtrodden Pope

Pope Benedict XVI announced that he would be resigning at the end of this month on Monday, prompting a great deal of speculation as to the reasons why. And according to John Nolte of, even raising the question of whether the ongoing sex scandal with the pope at the center has something to do with it is “trashing” the pope and engaging in wild “conspiracy theories.”

Today came the shocking news that 85-year-old Pope Benedict XVI has made the decision to resign at the end of the month, citing advanced age, fatigue, and exhaustion. While MSNBC kept its coverage respectful, CNN showed no such restraint, and immediately used the news as an excuse to launch into a frenzy of Catholic-bashing.

While Piers Morgan, with no evidence whatsoever, used Twitter to spread conspiracy theories…

Leaving aside for the moment the amusing notion that a wingnut would complain about conspiracy theories, this is what constitutes such a thing for Nolte. This is the Morgan tweet he is referring to:

As a Catholic, I’m not buying this. Popes don’t just quit because they’re tired. What’s going on here??

Yes, merely asking if there might be an unstated reason for the pope’s resignation is, in the fevered mind of Nolte, a crazy conspiracy theory — when it’s done by someone he considers on the left, of course. I doubt he thinks that Dinesh D’Souza or Orly Taitz are engaged in such conspiracy theories.

…Soledad O’Brien did the same on the CNN network, immediately using the Pope’s resignation as an excuse to delve into the Church’s child abuse scandal.

You see, according to CNN, the Pope is retiring because dealing with the child abuse scandal exhausted him:

Much of the questioning about “the why” — about why the Pope would be stepping down — would be questions about the impact that the sex scandal, that has enveloped the Catholic church, would be having on the Pope.

O’Brien then spoke to her first outside “expert,” left-wing filmmaker Alex Gibney, who directed the HBO film “Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God”– a documentary about the child abuse scandal. O’Brien set Gibney’s narrative immediately with this opening question:

“There also has to be some pressure and impact from what you really talked about; the sex scandal that has been a huge problem and enveloped much of the Catholic Church over the last decade.”

Wow, what a crazy conspiracy theory! Except it’s all true. This pope is at the center of the scandal because, when he was cardinal and the head of the former office of the inquisition, he was the one who issued strict orders to all bishops around the world to never turn a priest in to the police for their crimes and to cover it up, on pain of excommunication. It would hardly be a surprise if that has something to do with the pope’s decision to step down and it’s an entirely reasonable question to ask. Only on Planet Wingnuttia would this be considered a conspiracy theory, especially when we know from internal church documents that there was, in fact, a conspiracy to cover up child abuse.

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  • Gosh, why would anyone ever think the Catholic Church is engaging in any sort of conspiracy? I mean, their well-documented conspiracy to shield child-raping priests from justice all over the world is just an isolated thing. Just because there was a real conspiracy and the known conspirators are still in power doesn’t mean we should have a lot of speculation about another conspiracy, right?

  • gopiballava

    Wow. She didn’t even ask if he resigned because the guilt of hiding child abuse got to him. She didn’t even ask if the stress of having not prevented abuse or scandal had got to him. No, she asked if the stress of the publicity – which is obviously going on – had gotten to him!

    Now I’m thinking of Tim Minchin’s The Pope Song. There’s been so much negative stuff written about the Ratzinger that asking if it affected him is reasonable. But I guess the wingnuts won’t be content if it isn’t asked as, “Do you think the false and malicious anti-Catholic bigotry and the irrational claims of papal involvement in the child abuse scandal had any impact on his resignation?”

  • Political figures (and the Pope is a political figure) often resign when they are strongly associated with ongoing scandal (and the Church cover-up of child abuse/assault definitely counts), so IMO it’s not much of a stretch to think that is a consideration either, even if it is not stated aloud by the resignee or the organization he is resigning from.

    Such online sources as I could find seem to support Morgan over Nolte. Even given that Ratzinger/Benedict XVI is pretty old as popes go at the time of leaving his post (6th oldest mentioned on the Catholic Hierarchy site), there’s a lot of 78+ people on the list.

    (Indeed, the rarity of popes stepping down is well illustrated by the fact that the tables all presume the pope left the office by dying, and Ratzinger/Benedict’s entry is a weird exception.)

  • whirligig

    Leave Ratzey alone! Can’t you see the tear stains on his Prada shoes? Doesn’t the image of a tired old man weeping on his throne of gold plated heretic skulls inspire the least bit of feeling in you sickos?

  • scienceavenger

    Gee, something happened that hasn’t happened in almost 600 years, what’s the question?

  • anubisprime

    Of course the scandals has everything to do with it.

    Popes do not do this….JP2 was a total wreck,he probably had not a clue where he was in the latter stages of his dementia.

    Fuckin’ nonsense excuse of resigning because tired is a load of cobblers….

    He is firmly in the frame for the scandal that has reduced the RCC to the pitiable mangled disreputable gang of nonces steeped in tangled dogma and finger pointing they cannot even string together a cogent coherent story line it has become a shambles and is obviously the beginning of the end of an evil magisterium that has haunted humanity for far to long…it will never recover.

    I mentioned in another thread earlier that Benny will not leave the Vatican borders…seems I was correct he is apparently slinking off to a monastic life in some foul corner of the Vatican where he does not have to answer awkward questions and he is perfectly safe from extradition to the secular world on charges of conspiracy and obstruction of justice going back for over 50 yrs.

    That is what it is all about…nothing else!

  • bullet

    I like to think it’s because he found out they were just going to kill him to wrap the whole thing up. Still might, I guess.

  • lldayo

    I’m confused as to why the WND is upset about this. I thought Catholics weren’t considered christians so wouldn’t they have no problem with all sorts of loony conspiracy theories being thrown around?

  • Both explanations are plausible and have plenty of supporting evidence: he’s getting old and infirm, and his papacy has been a disaster due to much more than just the child-rape-and-coverup scandals, so no one should be shocked at the idea of him being told he’s a shitty Pope and should resign for everyone’s sake.

    (And besides, he did admit he wasn’t mentally fit for the job. Isn’t that kinda what “incompetence” means?)

  • What Ildayo said. The whole Protestant Reformation started with shitloads of Christians forming new churches and bashing the Catholic Church for outrageous corruption of all sorts. So why aren’t all those PROTESTANT churches doing what they were originally created to do?

  • Michael Heath

    My local newspaper ran a front page story. They interviewed only practicing Catholics who imagined Mr. Ratzinger’s motivations. You’d think an infallible super-hero was abdicating the position. Link:

  • jnorris

    IIRC, as a bishop or cardinal in Germany, Ratzinger covered up sex scandals there too.

  • slc1

    Re jnorris @ #12

    Joe the rat’s brother Georg has also been accused of involvement in a scandal in a German musical group which involved minors.

  • fastlane

    As if Faux Noise hasn’t long since cornered the market on JAQing off, they have the gall to get upset when CNN does a much milder version of it?

  • dugglebogey

    I understand having a knee jerk reaction to defend an organization that you are a part of, even if it is a church that is entirely separate from your own.

    But to have any credibility at all, when good evidence of child abuse and cover up are presented, you have to embrace it and condemn it entirely. Otherwise you can never be taken seriously on any subject, ever again.

    Of course, this is the case for anything written at Breitbart, and has been forever.

  • greg1466

    You see, according to CNN, the Pope is retiring because dealing with the child abuse scandal exhausted him:

    I too have to disagree with CNN here. I think it’s much more likely that he’s “retiring” because of how it looks for there to be repeated calls for the legal prosecution of a sitting Pope.

  • Shorter version: “How dare those atheist liberals bash Catholics. That’s our job.”*

    * Does not apply when we count Catholics’ numbers so as to tout the overwhelming Christian majority or when we join together with them to bash baby killers and fags.