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A Vatican Of Bad Fish

Ten days ago, I wondered what could be the real explanation for Joseph Ratzinger deciding to become the first Catholic Pope in over 600 years to resign rather than die in office. Given that his predecessor had made a conspicuous point of staying in office, publicly visible, throughout a gruesome decline into death, Ratzinger’s claim that he was abandoning the position of papal infallibility simply because he was feeling tired didn’t ring true at all.

Now, the real story behind the end of the reign of the man who went by the pen name of Pope Benedict XVI. Vatican insiders are now dividing into camps, fighting for control of the Catholic Church, control over who gets to be the next pope. It is in this light that revelations about the actual circumstances of Ratzinger’s decision to resign are starting to leak out of the Vatican.

A report that came out yesterday revealed that Ratzinger’s official story about resigning due to the gradual effects of aging were a smokescreen. Italian newspapers are now reporting that Ratzinger chose to quit the papacy hours, if not minutes, after he was confronted by a group of elderly cardinals who had documented, in a 300-page leather-bound report, a network of extreme financial corruption within Ratzinger’s administration of the Vatican. The report also detailed how, at the same time that the Roman Catholic Church was bankrolling political campaigns in the United States to try to prevent the legalization of same-sex marriage, significant numbers of the top priests in Rome had organized a system for providing each other with partners for brief homosexual affairs.

The report named names, providing, as La Repubblica put it, “an exact map of the mischief and the bad fish”.

cardinal corruption

Who might the biggest of the bad fish be? It’s significant that some sources within the Vatican suggest that the fighting currently taking place between factions of cardinals is centered over how to elect “a pope immune to blackmail”, implying that the current pope, and some of the people considered likely successors, are not immune to blackmail.

Every human being, Catholic and non-Catholic, has weaknesses. Not every human being, however, belongs to an organization that claims to have an exclusive link to the creator of the universe and a moral code that is indisputable. Making such outrageous claims of moral superiority makes the Catholic Church the legitimate target of extra attention when the truth about its moral failings is exposed.

The theology and liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church doesn’t seem to have been effective in purging the weakness of financial greed from its top leaders. Revelations of that systematic weakness make it difficult for members of the Catholic laity to tithe quite so generously in the future.

What’s worse for the rest of us is that we all, Catholic and non-Catholic, have been forced to endure the ungracious restriction of sexual self-determination maintained in American law at the insistence of a free-spending Catholic church led by people who seem to have believed that the suppression of homosexuality should only apply to others than themselves. It’s the top priests in Rome who seem to have been the worst “cafeteria Catholics”, doing whatever the hell they wanted while sternly lecturing the rest of the world.

If anything positive is likely to come of the meltdown of credibility in the Vatican, it is that Americans will finally allow their own values of equality, liberty, acceptance of diversity, and government free of religious interference to lead the United States toward a legal system less influenced by medieval prejudice.

3 thoughts on “A Vatican Of Bad Fish”

  1. Tom says:

    “If anything positive is likely to come of the meltdown of credibility in the Vatican, it is that Americans will finally allow their own values of equality, liberty, acceptance of diversity, and government free of religious interference to lead the United States toward a legal system less influenced by medieval prejudice.”

    i don’t think so. For one, Americans don’t have any values worth persuing (unless you think that consumerism and addiction are the pinnacle of civilization). Secondly, our legal system is as fucked up as that of the Vatican (if not worse) because we’re so goddamned stupid we allow our lawmakers to include corporations as people – and they’ve blatantly taken over the reins of power. Next, what values of equality are you talking about? The fictitious one that we used to believe in that said “everyone is equal under the law” when we’ve seen that bankers, politicians and homeland security goons can get away with doing whatever they want, and now we have a president who declared himself judge, jury and executioner (by drone) of his own people or anyone else he thinks is a threat anywhere in the world? Liberty? – we’re all debt slaves now! Acceptance of diversity? What planet are you living on Peregrin? We’re largely still fighting homophobia, a war on women and anyone else who isn’t a rich white man here in the states. The top 1% can do no wrong (like crashing the economy, polluting the air, land and water with their industrial and nuclear waste, and off-shoring all the formerly well-paying jobs to China and other cheap labor areas) while the rest of us have to run around like rats looking for work and watch our every step (due to the aforementioned spy drones over our skies now). Lastly, our government suffers from the same problems as those you listed for all human beings. They’re “special” and immune from prosecution while groping us to allow us to ride in an airplane, burn us to a crisp if we publish anything against the police state, and they can make false flag operations like the Kennedy assassination(s), 9-11, and Sandy Hook (among many others, both here and abroad – like the phony wars in Iraq and Afghanistan), while also torturing people (talk about medieval) and be assured there will be no investigation.

    In short – i agree that the Catholic Church is an abomination – but don’t be delusional in thinking that we’re any different over here.

    Mankind is probably the worst species of life on the planet (including microbes, slime mold, cancer and others) because WE CHOOSE TO DO WHAT WE DO.

    1. Dave says:

      “…Americans don’t have any values worth persuing.” That’s really a mouthful, Tom. Not any at all? None?

  2. Tom says:

    One example of our “watchdog” agencies ON THE JOB protecting us:

    Unidentified viral-fungal-like pathogen crosses into multiple kingdoms: Plant & Animal/Human. Rarely, if ever, seen in nature before.
    Following a 6 year approval battle, the USDA fully deregulated Monsanto’s Roundup Ready alfalfa in January 2011. A week later, they partially deregulated GM sugar beets. This occurred despite Secretary of Agriculture’s Tom Vilsack’s knowledge of a stark warning letter by Dr. Don M. Huber, Emeritus Professor of Plant Pathology, Purdue University two weeks prior, who found a link between the modified organisms and the proliferation of the new pathogen. Huber knew about its presence in Roundup Ready soy and corn and sought to hold off the GE alfalfa calling the situation an “emergency.”
    (read the rest)

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