Thursday, May 30, 2019

Rist slapped (Updated)

UPDATE 5/31: Commentary from Fr. Joseph Fessio, Fr. John Zuhlsdorf, and Phil Lawler.

LifeSite reports that Prof. John Rist, one of the signatories of the recent open letter accusing Pope Francis of heresy, has abruptly been banned from all pontifical universities – which he learned one day by finding himself suddenly denied permission to park his car at the Augustinianum, where he had been doing research.  Read the whole thing for the sorry details of the episode.

Saturday, May 25, 2019

Popes, heresy, and papal heresy

In an interview at National Catholic Register, philosopher John Rist defends his decision to sign the open letter accusing Pope Francis of heresy (on which I commented in an earlier post).  At Catholic Herald, canon lawyer Ed Peters argues that the letter fails to establish its main charge.  Properly to understand this controversy, it is important to see that a reasonable person could judge that both men have a point – as long as we disambiguate the word “heresy.”

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Hayek’s Tragic Capitalism

My essay “Hayek’s Tragic Capitalism” appears in the Spring 2019 issue of the Claremont Review of Books.  (It’s behind a paywall at the moment.)  From the article:

Nor will one find in [Hayek’s] work the chirpy optimism with which many libertarians and Reaganite conservatives ritualistically defend the market economy.  Hayek’s case for free enterprise doesn’t fit any of the usual simplistic stereotypes.  He not only explicitly and persistently rejected laissez-faire, but could write as eloquently about the moral downside of capitalism and the emotional attractions of socialism as any left-winger.  In an era in which – young socialist chic notwithstanding – global capitalism appears to have swept all before it, it is the triumphalist defenders of the free market rather than its critics who have the most to learn from Hayek’s cautious, nuanced apologia…

Saturday, May 11, 2019

More on presentism and truthmakers

The esteemed Bill Vallicella continues to press the truthmaker objection against presentism.  I remain unimpressed by it.  Can we break this impasse?  Let me try by, first, proposing a diagnosis of the dialectical situation.  Then I will respond to the points Bill makes in his latest post.

Monday, May 6, 2019

Some comments on the open letter

What should we think of the recent open letter accusing Pope Francis of heresy, signed by Fr. Aidan Nichols, Prof. John Rist, and other priests and academics (and for which Prof. Josef Seifert has now expressed his support)?  Like others who have commented on it, I think the letter overstates things in its main charge and makes some bad arguments, but that it also makes many correct and important points that cannot reasonably be dismissed merely because the letter is seriously deficient in other respects.