Daily Archives: December 31, 2014
As every year, there is a longish Christmas pause in Italian football. This pause is, like every year, used by South American footballers to go back to countries like Chile, Uruguay, Brazil or, well, Argentina.
They stay there more or less quiet for a couple of weeks; try not to eat too much; greet all parents and relatives; and in January, when the time has come, reluctantly or very reluctantly board the plane to Italy. Some take every excuse to come back later, in fact, causing some Lío behind the very heavy desks of their employers.
It seems to me that another Argentinian could have done the same. Let the vescovo vicario, or whoever it is the protocol calls for, celebrate all the masses for you.
Stun the world.
Fly to Argentina.
Spend Christmas in the slum, among the dirt and the rats. Sleep in a barrack. Dance the tango with the local prostitutes. Call all the TV stations to immortalise the Great Event.
Come on. Beats a wheelchair every day. So populist-christmasy. Unto us a hero is born. The First Castroite. Deck the Halls With Bags Of Dope….
Personally, I would not want anyone to think it's easy to get accustomed to the humble luxury of … an entire hotel floor. L'albergo e' grande, la gente mormora…. (you should learn Italian… no: you really should…).
Again, just my humble opinion. A lost occasion, I think, for first-class, ground-breaking, media-shattering Attention Whoring. Albeit, it must be said, at the cost of substituting the Humble Hotel Floor for the rats and the dirt for a couple of weeks, day and night.
Which, perhaps, it's all there is to say about the matter.
I have touched upon this briefly yesterday, but I would like to say a word or two more today.
Could it be that Francis’ newly announced environ-mental offensive heralds his (unofficial, of course) surrender on communion for adulterers? Let me expand…
I do not know whether Francis has a shred of common sense remaining to him; but if he has, he must have noticed that he has mistreated the patience of the Catholic world for long enough as to cause what can now be only seen as a serious backlash. A man with a modest dose of wits about him would understand that there are limits to what he can do without becoming, himself, the victim of his own folly.
I would, therefore, think it improbable that a rationally thinking man – a man, that is, not drunk on his own power and popularity – would decide to engage in two huge battles that must provide him with an awful lot of criticism: sacrilege concerning the Sacraments, and an highly ideologised, secular anti-Catholicism concerning the environment.
Rather, this newly announced secular jihad could tell us that he has decided to deflect the attention from a theme that has seen him losing, and direct it towards an issue that, he thinks, will see him winning; if not in actual fact – the world will continue to care pretty much zero for environmentalism, net of big words and proclaims – at least in the enduring popularity he thinks it will procure to him.
Let us reflect what will this 2015 become if Francis decides an all-out confrontation on both issues: on the matter of communion for adulterers he has already had his Jesuit nose punched all right, and all those who have eyes could see it bleed for many weeks. On the environ-mentalist jihad, ferocious criticism has now been falling on him from all corners, for several days. Heck, when even Vittorio Messori thinks he must timidly distance himself from the worst of Francis’ antics, you know the man is rapidly becoming toxic.
Francis may have a long pontificate (God forbid!), but chances are it won’t be so long. The risk of a massive backlash after his death or resignation – say: because he has health problems; or it turns out he sniffs cocaine; or he was found in a gay sauna together with his favourite nancy boy, Ricca – are rather high, and will remain so for a while. Therefore, every public supporter of him must ask himself what will become of his job once Francis is gone and sanity has, at least in part, come back on the shores of the Blond Tiber. Messori’s article is, if you ask me, a professional insurance policy as much as it is a (mild) criticism. Others will follow his example. Francis will soon become the Pope even his supporters consider fashionable, and highly advisable, “not to understand”.
Then there is the matter of worldliness. Whilst the Pope has always had a right to respectful silence when he avoids talking bollocks in religious matters, he has no such rights when he gets in the middle of the public fray concerning political debate. If he thinks he can choose side on a purely worldly – and stupidly so – matter without being criticised by everyone pretty much in the same way as they would criticise everyone else, he is even more deluded than we thought.
He must, surely, understand that if he gets in the middle of the saloon fight, he will punched just like everyone else. He must know that there is a limit to the amount of criticism he can be subjected to without his reputation as Pope being completely shattered. He must, or he truly has lost his mind in an utterly drunken, megalomaniac drive.
All these elements lead me to at least hope that Francis will dedicate 2015 to social justice warrior issues in order to deflect attention from his caving in in the matter of communion for adulterers. To hope it, that is, in the measure in which I hope this man has a dose of common sense remained in him.
This last hope isn’t very strong, but it is there. Francis shows sign both of getting the lesson (for now) when he gets punched in the nose and of looking with the lantern for said punching, so it’s difficult to say if he is a sane man with a partial loss of the sense of reality, or a completely delusional madman with short periods of sanity thrown in here and there.
It will be an interesting 2015, for sure.
Let us spend it punching for the right cause.