They don’t even fade away. Case in point: Charles W. Colson.

‘When you get to be a Christian, and you are serious about it, all the pleasures of the flesh disappear. If I had an indulgence, it would be sports cars, but I can’t afford to be seen driving one. I had one, but I sold it.’”

I guess hypocrisy isn’t a pleasure of the flesh. It probably pays well, though.

I was Catholic once (…and young), so I’m going to dive into the ocean of commentary on the Church’s sex abuse scandal. Yesterday, Ross Douthat offered an idea for the “Are you f&^$%ing kidding me with this s@*!?!” file:

In reality, the scandal implicates left and right alike. The permissive sexual culture that prevailed everywhere, seminaries included, during the silly season of the ’70s deserves a share of the blame, as does that era’s overemphasis on therapy. (Again and again, bishops relied on psychiatrists rather than common sense in deciding how to handle abusive clerics.) But it was the church’s conservative instincts — the insistence on institutional loyalty, obedience and the absolute authority of clerics — that allowed the abuse to spread unpunished.”

I hardly know where to begin with this utterly ludicrous contribution.

While Douthat seems to be doing his Fox News-fair-and-balanced best to implicate the left here, he’s gone a league too far. “The silly 70s,” Ross? Really? We’re not talking about slap and tickle at the seminary – a tradition I would have to guess is roughly as old as time – we’re talking about sexual predators who for years upon years made children their victims. Children. Surely Douthat doesn’t mean to suggest that those poor deaf choir boys were running around in Studio 54 hot pants, and, yet, what else are we to take from his assertion that the culture is to blame?

It’s easy to set psychiatry up here too, isn’t it? Those MDs with their newfangled notions! That too fails the sniff test. In Germany, a psychiatrist repeatedly warned Church officials that an abusive priest must be kept away from children, but he was ignored. No, the blame here – and there is so, so much – belongs to the priests who abused children and the bishops and archbishops and cardinals who abetted them. Their crimes should not be called “cover ups”, they should be called what they are: the criminally negligent actions that “allowed the abuse to spread unpunished.”

I know Ross still wants to protect the Church hierarchy and its ancient customs, but it’s time for the tortured attempts to blame a permissive culture to end. It’s time for the attempts to blame anyone or anything other than the Roman Catholic Church’s hierarchy to end. Catholics have endured more of these scandals than any other denomination because of their peculiar insistence on celibacy for priests. As long as the Church offers refuge to men who are unable or unwilling to integrate sexuality into their adult identities, there will be problems. For not only does the Church give them a haven to hide from an important part of their humanity, it elevates them for doing so. That’s a recipe for tragedy, the kind of tragedy that is being visited upon the Catholic faithful around the world during this Holy Week. Again.

Dallas W.And now, a moment of Zen:

‘It’s time for the community to accept the school board elections and the school board’s vote,’ said Dallas Woodhouse, state director of Americans for Prosperity, a conservative group that backs the board majority.”

This guy is all about acceptance. You know, he’s just so mellow and living in the moment. The past and the future are just illusions to ole Dallas. He really is just one big Buddhist master.

This battle has indeed awakened the sleeping giant, and Americans for Prosperity’s members – one million strong – will continue to put the pressure on our elected officials. More than 320,000 Americans have signed our November Is Coming petition, sending a message to their members of Congress that their days in Washington are numbered. I think we will see some historic changes in our country at the hands of these hard-working people who are taking time away from their everyday lives to start tea party groups and commit themselves to preserving liberty. This fight is not over. Today we lost in Congress, but we won with the American people.”

Oh, wait, maybe not so much with the acceptance after all. When people care about their school board’s actions, they need to suck it up, but when they care about AFP’s distortions and propaganda, they’re fighting the good fight.

219 members in the U.S. House put blind adherence to a radical government-first ideology ahead of the wishes of the American people. We will be less free tomorrow than we are today. Bureaucrats and politicians will stand between patients and doctors. And our health care will now be permanently politicized, subject to the whim of our often out of touch political class.

That’s a very realistic and calm assessment of the health care reform measure that President Obama will sign into law today, isn’t it? Meanwhile, the people Dally Lama urges to “accept” the school board’s action are actually -get this – signing up to attend and/or speak at the school board’s meeting. The meeting at which the board’s majority will hammer the last nail into the coffin of the socioeconomic diversity-based assignment system. How dare those concerned citizens show their faces? Don’t they know it’s time to chill and let happen what will happen? “We have just begun to fight” only applies to freaky teabaggers, apparently, the rest of us need to shut it and accept. I don’t think so, Dallas.

FrumsterThere’s a lot to love in David Frum’s take on the success of health care reform in the US House. For starters, the title: WATERLOO. Hee! (For the kids out there, that’s OMG! LOL!!!) Even though Frum’s not someone I much agree with, it’s refreshing to read a thoughtful assessment of the GOP’s performance. He thinks it was as pathetic as I do.

Could a deal have been reached? Who knows? But we do know that the gap between this plan and traditional Republican ideas is not very big. The Obama plan has a broad family resemblance to Mitt Romney’s Massachusetts plan. It builds on ideas developed at the Heritage Foundation in the early 1990s that formed the basis for Republican counter-proposals to Clintoncare in 1993-1994. …

No illusions please: This bill will not be repealed. Even if Republicans scored a 1994 style landslide in November, how many votes could we muster to re-open the ‘doughnut hole’ and charge seniors more for prescription drugs? How many votes to re-allow insurers to rescind policies when they discover a pre-existing condition? How many votes to banish 25 year olds from their parents’ insurance coverage? And even if the votes were there – would President Obama sign such a repeal?

We followed the most radical voices in the party and the movement, and they led us to abject and irreversible defeat.

Italics mine own.

Frum goes on about how the allegedly conservative media (let’s face it, there’s nothing conservative about those people) kept leaders who knew better from making a deal, but that’s not really servin’ it up good. There are Republicans in the House and Senate who know, as I know, that something had to be done about health care, they were just too afraid to do it. So what if it meant losing a seat? If you’re not there to provide real, lasting help to your constituents, why are you there at all? They weren’t “trapped” as Frum has it, they chose to throw in their lot with those who scream racial and other vile epithets, who denigrate science and knowledge in favor of disinformation and propaganda, and who would do nothing rather than solve very real problems. That’s the reality, but otherwise Frum’s not far off.

That’s right! And, furthermore, I’m too blessed to be stressed! I’ve finally found it. No, not The Holy Grail, something about Wake County’s new school board for which to be thankful. Bet you didn’t think there was such thing, huh? At least the Gang of Five isn’t in charge of the curriculum. Texas, as always, proves that things can always get worse.

Highlights of the new Texas-conservative-approved social studies curriculum abound in the New York Times. Some of my favorites are below, but make sure to pick your own.

Dr. McLeroy pushed through a change to the teaching of the civil rights movement to ensure that students study the violent philosophy of the Black Panthers in addition to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s nonviolent approach. He also made sure that textbooks would mention the votes in Congress on civil rights legislation, which Republicans supported.

‘Republicans need a little credit for that,’ he said. ‘I think it’s going to surprise some students.’”

Wouldn’t it be really neat if, instead of just taking credit for 50-year-old legislation, he supported civil rights NOW? Like, if he came out in favor of gay marriage? Or universal health care? Trippy! That would really surprise the youngsters.

Even the course on World History did not escape the board’s scalpel.

Cynthia Dunbar, a lawyer from Richmond who is a strict constitutionalist and thinks the nation was founded on Christian beliefs, managed to cut Thomas Jefferson from a list of figures whose writings inspired revolutions in the late 18th century and 19th century, replacing him with St. Thomas Aquinas, John Calvin and William Blackstone. (Jefferson is not well liked among the conservatives on the board because he coined the term ‘separation between church and state.’)”

We hold these truths to be self evident: that Thomas Jefferson was a pinko no-goodnik who doesn’t really matter that much and was red-headed besides. Seriously, to a Wahoo like myself, this borders on criminal.

Mavis B. Knight, a Democrat from Dallas, introduced an amendment requiring that students study the reasons ‘the founding fathers protected religious freedom in America by barring the government from promoting or disfavoring any particular religion above all others.’

It was defeated on a party-line vote.”

Mavis, babe, Jefferson’s out. Wake up and smell the putrefaction. It’s all about Christianity now. Don’t you know Jesus was aiming for total world domination? Don’t worry, He didn’t know it either, but they’re off to the races in Texas. At least RonJohn can’t change Wake’s curriculum. Yet.