PopeWatch: HippieSpeak




An interesting comment by Hilary White at Damian Thompson’s blog at The Spectator:


A good deal of the problem with Francis, that so far no one is talking about, is his Jesuit intellectual training. He talks as he thinks, and this is very much how Jesuits and their students of his time period spoke and thought (if you could call it thinking). This is precisely how the hippie radicals of that period spoke. I remember it very well from my childhood in the hippie 70s; I was surrounded by it.

If you read the full texts of his speeches and homilies or watch him on Youtube, and you can follow the Italian, you will see that he does not talk in complete sentences, does not use any sort of rational rhetorical system presenting a coherent idea and building on it. He emotes and gestures, he jumps from idea to disconnected idea, uses sentence fragments and phrases and half-delivered jokes. Vatican employees tasked with translating him into language, any language, that is comprehensible to readers, are faced with a very difficult task of simply making any sense out of him. It is why you mostly see paraphrases and summaries online where they have picked out the most coherent bits and pieces.

There’s no there there. This is why it is so absurd to see all these well-intentioned Catholics (and less well intentioned) trying so very, very hard to make even a modicum of coherent sense out of his weird blitherings, let alone gain any kind of useful Catholic information for their faith lives. He is probably best compared to the Delphic oracle. He just opens his mouth and blithers, and his little group of priests of Apollo tell us all what he meant.


That would explain quite a lot.  It would also explain why the Pope often makes use of Leftist clichés, many of which were popular when he was a young man.  Frank the Hippie Pope is beginning to seem like the best explanation of the current pontificate:


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  1. Well done! Very well done!

    My only tiny comment was that his words and inflections are representative of 1980’s California Valley (girl) speak than 60’s/70’s hippies. For the hippies, think Cheech and Chong talk.

    Party on dudes!

  2. Don’t overestimate the pseudo-intellect of Bergoglio: he has been a puppet of Lehmann, Kasper, Marx, and Danneels, others, for years. Yes, from the beginning — not just his addresses, but his ridiculous exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, replete with half-baked jargon (“Money should serve, not rule!” Give him a big huzzah.) prominently displayed he is the muneca of other forces. Archbp. Marcelo Sorondo-Sanchez, who it is my personal belief, is a very evil man, does almost all of his writing and thinking now for him.

    His academic inadequacy for the position was why, when he was first elected, the western media tried to pretend he had earned his doctorate at Frankfurt’s Sahnkt Georgen theologate—-Oops! He never finished. That was covered up, and is still to this day.

    During the last two years, when the focus should have been on the continuing loss of faith in Christendom, he has ably parroting the wealth-redistribution and global-warming (or is it climate-change now?) of the global elites. He is a pretender, easily led into errors at a time when we need a profoundly able leader.
    Well, as Card. Mario Luigi Ciappi related in his letter to Dr. Baumgartner, only later revealed) about Fatima’s hidden meaning, ““In the Third Secret it is predicted, among other things, that the great apostasy in the Church will begin at the top.”

  3. My visiting, non-practicing Catholic sister was shocked and appalled to hear me speak negatively of this Pope. She’s usually pretty venomous towards anything Catholic but she sure likes this Pope, which speaks volumes about him. She was truly baffled that I “wouldn’t like the guy”. The subject got changed in order to avoid an unpleasant argument.

    After she went back home, I remembered this video and how funny and spot-on it is, so I emailed it to her and suggested she check it out because it’s very amusing and will tell you why I “don’t like the guy”.

    Crickets. She’s never responded to me. Guess she didn’t think it was funny. 🙂 I love it and think it’s a hoot.

  4. I think that this Pope’s lack of clarity and incoherence is a feature, not a bug.
    His pronouncements require interpreters, and each interpreter may spin the
    Pope’s words to suit himself. For everyone who defends the Pope as being
    on board with Humanae Vitae, there’s another who can point to
    Francis’ remark that Catholics shouldn’t “breed like rabbits” to justify ignoring
    the Church’s stand against contraception. Sometimes this Pope extols spreading
    the Gospel, and sometimes he announces that proselytism is “solemn nonsense”.
    Take your pick which view suits best. Sometimes this Pope judges acts as sinful,
    sometimes he asks “who am I to judge?”.
    When the Pope’s words are so incoherent and contradictory, it falls to whoever
    controls the narrative around him to pick and choose how he is to be
    interpreted. If he keeps his words vague enough, this Pope’s pronouncements
    may be used to justify just about anything, all with a veneer of orthodoxy and
    plausible deniability. I believe he and the men around him prefer it that way.

  5. And what about the folks who elected him? How bad is it? I think Steve Phoenix got it right with his quote about Our Lady of Fatima:

    ““In the Third Secret it is predicted, among other things, that the great apostasy in the Church will begin at the top.”

    That day is evidently now here.

  6. @Elizabeth Fitzmaurice
    This happens to me quite often–it seems once anyone “usually venomous towards anything Catholic” finds out I am Catholic, they gush over Pope Francis. I just look at them and shrug, because I honestly do not know what to say! I want to ask them so many questions “why do you think he’s so great?” or “Is it over climate change?”
    If I thought it had anything to do with them being really being interested in Christ or his Church, of course I would engage them, but sadly, it just seems like they say or feel that way just to be “hip” (ha ha)

  7. Rosey, your observation that “it seems once anyone ‘usually venomous towards anything Catholic’ finds out I am Catholic, they gush over Pope Francis” is a quite keen one: living here in San Francisco (Babylon-by-the-Bay) the connection is even more mordant. Those who hate the moral standards (at least, the traditional moral standards) of Catholic belief LOVE Papa Francisco.

    Today we have too many defeatist Priams, and not enough gimlet-eyed Laocoons and Cassandras.

  8. Ernst Schreiber calls it Sodom by the sea. It does remind one of the fact that there’s a lot of salt around Sodom as well as in the sea. You may be right.

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