…who was rebuking me for voting my conscience and not getting on board with either Rmoney or the One and darkly warning of the sinister effects if more Catholics vote their conscience instead of being good Party lackeys:
The problem with the electorate is not that too many people are voting their conscience. The way we got to where we are right now is that conscience is seldom considered and expediency and winning are the primary goals. Romney looks like he is fixing to actually manage to lose this election to a president conservatives keep telling themselves is “the worst president in the history of the US”–during a lousy economy, after gratuitous assaults on religious liberty, due process and civil right and a bungled foreign policy. If Romney manages to lose to this guy, the takeaway conservatives *should* have is not “It was a vast left wing conspiracy” or “Shea brought us down with his mighty blog of a handful of readers”. It should be “How in hell have we so corrupted our message that even now nobody voted for it? Why are we losing so badly in the marketplace of ideas if our message really is what makes for human flourishing?” That a moral void like Mitt Romney is the very very best we could come up with is an indictment, not of Obama, but of us. The sooner we Catholics face that and stop acting as slaves and lapdogs of the GOP establishment, the better.
Today, Daniel Nichols sums up the basic blunder that the Thing that Used to Be Conservatism has made: choosing Mammon, Mars and Might over authentic Catholic conservatism just as the Left has chosen novelty and perversion over authentic Catholic growth and development. The day will come when nemesis will visit the the hubris of the Left as it is currently visiting the hubris of the right. But our task is to learn our lesson and seek first the kingdom, rather than the hollowed out expediency and cynicism that currently dominates our political discourse even within the Church. We have the Holy Spirit and therefore the capacity for real renewal. Let us search and try our ways and turn again to the Lord.