instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

The devil laughs

Many of the comments on the post below focus (understandably enough) on the one post of Diogenes that Mark Shea linked to. Many people have asked what, particularly, I object to in that post. In one reply, I wrote, "This particular post implies the Cardinal committed an act of apostasy in exchange for a good deal of money."

But my point is larger than settling on the best twenty word paraphrase of that one post. And my point is that what Diogenes does at Off the Record is evil.1

This goes beyond mere isolated faults and failings. What Diogenes posts, habitually and as his stock-in-trade, is poison. And I don't mean "poison" as in "bad stuff," I mean it as in "stuff that can kill the soul and lead to eternal damnation."

It is a poison of hatred, of derision, of ill-will, of pride, of envy. It is a poison that will kill a person's soul dead, and not just the one who concocts the poison, but those who feed off it as it is doled out, those who bathe in it, those who carry it with them wherever they go.

The habit of hate kills the life of charity.

To those insisting on the demonstration of what I wrote could be objectively demonstrated: Read Diogenes. Read Off the Record. The hatred, derision, ill-will, pride, and envy are there, evident to anyone who can see.

Some people react to this poison by squirming, then trying to excuse it: he's a good priest2; he's addressing real abuses; sometimes he's right; he may be wrong other times, but that's not evil; haven't you ever heard of parody and satire?

You can't do evil that good may result.

You can't do evil because the other guys started it.

You can't do evil because the other guys are eviler.

You can't do evil because the other guys do it, too.

You can't do evil.

1. To say this is not to pass judgment on the state of Diogenes's soul. It is to make a judgment about the objective gravity of his actions.

2. That he is a priest seems to be the consensus of people who claim to know who he is; I don't know, but it does seem likely.