PZ was wrong wrong wrong »« [Lounge #408]

New pope, same as the old pope

It’s Bergoglio, an Argentinian Jesuit that the Rationalist Association had as a 33:1 longshot.

Rumor has it that he’s conservative, hates that contraception and gay marriage crap, believes he has a magic spiritual hotline to the lord of the universe who is named Jesus, and is not — I repeat, is not — scientifically minded or an atheist. He also engages in magical rituals several times a week, and does not encourage women to touch his penis. At least, not openly.

He’s also old.

There. Now you know everything you need to know about the new head of one of the world’s oldest criminal organizations. You can turn off your TVs now.

Comments

  1. Ulysses says

    The only unusual thing about this pope is he’s not a European. Other than that, same-old, same-old.

  2. kevinv says

    I went to a Jesuit high school and would say they taught me to think for myself very well. So well that I left the church and became an atheist (and i’m not the only jesuit instructed person I know that had the same experience.) So I have had some lingering respect for Jesuits, but I don’t expect this to change anything.

  3. kevinv says

    @Beatrice – you can click the “View History” link next to the search bar on Wikipedia to see all revisions to a page. You don’t have to dig through google cache for them.

  4. Esteleth, stupid fucking starchild Tolkien worshiping douche says

    Interestingly, the progressively-minded Catholics of my acquaintance are trumpeting this as good news.

    I’m not sure why. But they are.

  5. raven says

    There has been a power struggle in the RCC between modernists and archaics for a few centuries now.

    The archaics have won most of the time. About the only modernist was Pope John of Vatican II.

    From what little I’ve heard, the new Pope is another in a long line of archaics. Same old, same old. About what I expected, it was going to be one reptilian old man or another.

  6. Pierce R. Butler says

    From the Catholic perspective, it probably means more that F1 is the first Jesuit Pope than that he is the first non-European Pope.

    This rather startles me, too: I’d been under the impression that just about all of the other orders seriously distrust the Jesuits (for rather good historical reasons), and that they would reliably unite against all such aspiring for the top job.

  7. says

    Despite being born in Buenos Aires, he is as European as all of his predecessors: he is the son of Italian immigrants, and grew up speaking Italian at home. He is actually MORE Italian than both John-Paul and Benedict combined.

    Plus ça change, plus c’est la la même merde vieux.

  8. raven says

    wikipedia from Beatrice’s link:

    He was named to the Cardinal-Priest of Saint Robert Bellarmino.

    Oh, for Cthulhu’s sake!!!

    Saint Bellarmino is the guy who torched Giordano Bruno and almost torched Galileo. Being a murderer is no bar to being a Catholic saint.

    I can see where this is going right now.

  9. glodson says

    Unless I see him changing the Church’s stance on the whole pro-child rape protection and anti-contraception, anti-choice, and gay bigotry, among others, I shall continue not caring about the particulars of the pope.

  10. timberwoof says

    Ah, so the new Bishop of Rome is called Francis, after St. Francis, a person declared by humans to be in heaven. How quaint. The specific Francis he named himself for is Francis Xavier, the not very nice founder of his order, not Fancis Assisi, the mostly nice guy associated with sheep and woofies.

    Shall we engage in some Schadenfreude as we contemplate producers in various news, discovery, and history channels as they fall all over themselves to research this guy and present biographies?

  11. doubtthat says

    I know the hip thing for we, the atheists, is to make fun of this, but I, for one, am glad that the void has been filled. Without an ancient virgin to interpret God’s words, how could the Church possibly determine the appropriate distribution of pedophiles to parishes?

  12. mathema says

    Hmm, they finally picked the next god whisperer. Nothing to see here folks, just get back to molesting those kids now.

  13. Esteleth, stupid fucking starchild Tolkien worshiping douche says

    So, as near as I can tell, the RCC just traded someone who was conscripted by the Nazis as a kid to one who collaborated with a junta as an adult.

    Goody.

  14. eveningchaos says

    Hipee! Another fool in a cassock to lead the credulous into an abyss of stupidity and intolerance. I’m sure the new pontiff will excel greatly in keeping the flock poor, ignorant, and full of self-doubt and guilt.

  15. frog says

    I can’t be the only person whose brain immediately went here:

    Psycho: The name’s Francis Soyer, but everybody calls me Psycho. Any of you guys call me Francis, and I’ll kill you.
    Leon: Ooooooh.
    Psycho: You just made the list, buddy. And I don’t like nobody touching my stuff. So just keep your meat-hooks off. If I catch any of you guys in my stuff, I’ll kill you. Also, I don’t like nobody touching me. Now, any of you homos touch me, and I’ll kill you.
    Sergeant Hulka: Lighten up, Francis.

    I hope the Swiss Guard has a Sgt. Hulka.

  16. Christopher says

    http://articles.latimes.com/2005/apr/17/world/fg-cardinal17

    VATICAN CITY — A human rights lawyer has filed a criminal complaint against an Argentine cardinal mentioned as a possible contender to become pope, accusing him of involvement in the 1976 kidnappings of two priests.

    Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio’s spokesman Saturday called the allegation “old slander.”

    The complaint filed in a court in the Argentine capital on Friday accused Bergoglio, the archbishop of Buenos Aires, of involvement in the abduction of two Jesuit priests by the military dictatorship, reported the newspaper Clarin. The complaint does not specify the nature of Bergoglio’s alleged involvement.

  17. What a Maroon, el papa ateo says

    is not — I repeat, is not — scientifically minded

    To be fair, he does have an MS in chemistry. I assume he learned the super-secret formula for turning wine into blood.

  18. Azuma Hazuki says

    Why does the fact that he’s a closeminded, ignorant old bigot–excuse me, “conserative,” surprise anyone?

    The RCC cannot afford to change its stance on anything involving human sexuality. Sex is a huge part of human life and the human experience; to change its stance would make a lot of people wonder what else they’ve been wrong about throughout history. Once someone in the modern world learns about Nicea, about pseudepigraphy, about the beliefs of early church fathers like Origen, the control game is over.

  19. TxSkeptic says

    Following #3 Beatrice’s Wiki past & present comparisons, I also noticed the new pope suddenly acquired a masters degree in Chemistry. Why would that suddenly be relevant? Are they sure it wasn’t in the study of alchemy?

  20. Abdul Alhazred says

    Did anyone really expect a liberal Pope?

    Argentine cardinal now known as Pope Francis I
    http://www.suntimes.com/18822079-761/argentine-cardinal-now-known-as-pope-francis-i.html

    The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi said it was a “good hypothesis” that the pope would be installed next Tuesday, on the feast of St. Joseph, patron saint of the universal church. The installation Mass is attended by heads of state from around the world, requiring at least a few days’ notice.

    Benedict would not attend, he said. …

    Interesting.

    Jorge Bergoglio?

    The last name is Italian, at least in form.

    So we (sort of) have another Italian Pope, albeit Hispanic.
    As it might be Rodrigo Borgia.

  21. says

    @Abdul Alhazred #29 – He is the son of Italian immigrants to Argentina and grew up speaking Italian at home. He is as Hispanic as his predecessors. While he is legally an Argentine citizen, he’s more Italian than both JP and Bennie combined.

  22. Azuma Hazuki says

    @29/Abdul

    Holy shit, I just realized why the name sounds familiar…another Borgia!

  23. says

    As an Argentinian I can confirm your “rumours” and ad that this guy was a collaborator with the military during the last coup d’etat during the 70′s : Among many things, he informed to the military that two monks that were working in a low income neighbourhood were no longer protected by the catholic church, facilitating their detention and posterior disappearance.
    Mind you, to “dissapear” at that time meant to be detained by the military, held without rights or trial, possibly (and often) tortured under suspicions of being a Marxist/ “terrorist”, being completely incomunicated with your family and finally be killed and buried on an unmarked grave, or thrown form a plane into the river.
    Trown.
    From a fucking plane.
    Into the river. (Known as “deathflights”: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_flights )
    Our own Pope now, collaborated with the monsters who did this and many other things. He “absolved” the guys who did that. He most probably knew about the abducted babies (I shit you not) from women that were pregnant during captivity (“dissapeared women”) and were given in adoption to families linked to the military (sometimes, this families knew the origin of the babies).
    This new pope is a fucking work of art.
    He will fit well in his new job.

  24. says

    Has the new one had the old one arrested yet for resigning? And how much Holy Clorox will it take to remove this shit-smear that is the RCC from the shorts of Humanity? Damnit, what a miserable fucking joke.

  25. What a Maroon, el papa ateo says

    He is the son of Italian immigrants to Argentina and grew up speaking Italian at home.

    Which makes him a fairly typical Argentine.

    He is as Hispanic as his predecessors.

    He’s as “Hispanic” as any Argentine. Of course the concept of some sort of “Hispanicness” that unites Argentines with Salvadorans with Dominicans is, well, problematic, let’s say. Aside from a hemisphere and a distant colonial relationship with Spain, they don’t share much.

  26. robro says

    quote from the Wikipedia bio around 2010 when Argentina was considering legalizing same-sex marriage:

    “Let’s not be naive, we’re not talking about a simple political battle; it is a destructive pretension against the plan of God. We are not talking about a mere bill, but rather a machination of the Father of Lies that seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.”

    Oh, great, Holy War talk. Just what we need.

  27. moarscienceplz says

    At last! We finally have someone who can teach the Holy See how to Tango!

  28. Azuma Hazuki says

    “Let’s not be naive, we’re not talking about a simple political battle; it is a destructive pretension against the plan of God. We are not talking about a mere bill, but rather a machination of the Father of Lies that seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.”

    If there ever was a time for a [citation needed] tag…

    What’s all the more hilarious is Catholics, especially Jesuits, are supposed to be a bit more scientifically-minded than Protestants with their “sola scriptura” basis. They’re all about “natual law,” though someone pointed out to me that this is another euphemism and means less “observe nature and draw conclusions” than “we’re gonna reify our own cognitive biases and say God made it that way.”

  29. unclefrogy says

    for a minute I thought there might be chance that they would pick a Latin American who was a proponent “liberation theology” to be the next pope I am glad they picket another reactionary it insures the present path of the church toward irrelevance.
    uncle frogy

  30. says

    I wonder what sort of test the Catholic Church has to prove its priests are virgins. No one is likely to care if Father Joe, your local parish priest who will never reach high office in the church, fibbed about not having sex. It’s quite another thing if someone pops out of the woodwork claiming they did the deed with one of the bigwigs.

  31. mathema says

    @25 Nope, he only got as far as water into wine.

    But on a serious note, the papacy is actually important for us to keep an eye on, considering the sheer amount of wrong that they can (and do) inflict upon the world.

    It really isn’t a laughing matter, tbh, but who can resist making fun of the “papacy”. Even the word papacy itself is funny.

  32. vaiyt says

    The cardinals, mostly nominated by Darth Ratzinger himself, picked a traditionalist of the same persuasion with already strong ties to the inner Vatican circle.

    Quelle surprise.

  33. Abdul Alhazred says

    @40

    Priests don’t have to be virgins.

    The oath of celibacy is not retroactive.

  34. Mario says

    @32 and others, wow thanks for the links and information about his involvement with the argentinian dictatorship, I’ll go puke now if you’ll excuse me.

  35. opposablethumbs says

    Esteleth

    So, as near as I can tell, the RCC just traded someone who was conscripted by the Nazis as a kid to one who collaborated with a junta as an adult.

    Exactly. As sc-numbers (sorry! Got a nym?) told us, this reventado hijo de remil – ah, shit, that’s a sexist insult. Let me rephrase that. This putrid douche collaborated with murderers and torturers, and was complicit in the disappearance of both priests and civilians

  36. woggler says

    Apparently one of his first official duties will be attending World Youth Day. Sussing out the potential fresh meat, maybe?

  37. Cannabinaceae says

    Here I thought we’d be getting another reptile, but we get a talking mule instead.

  38. dean says

    Old bigoted misogynist protector of pedophiles retires. Group of his peers meet, wear stupid clothes, and select a member of the same closed society as a replacement. But, since they used white smoke, people think it must be special.
    Will anything change? Likely not. Abuse of children by priests will be considered wrong only as it influences the flow of money into the church’s coffers: no serious efforts will be taken to deal with the offenders (see increasing problems with them in Germany, despite the “no tolerance” smokescreen. Women will still be valued only as long as they are happy to serve as docile receptacles of semen and vessels for fetuses (only in marriage, of course: otherwise they are scum), but when they attempt to enter discussion of social, economic, or philosophical issues, they will be belittled and quieted, as always.

  39. Abdul Alhazred says

    This really is more serious than “ties” to an evil regime.
    This guy apparently turned fellow priests over to the death squads / secret police.

    That is to say an active participant in fascist crimes, not just someone who “got along” and said nothing.

  40. d.f.manno says

    @ moarscienceplz (#36)

    At last! We finally have someone who can teach the Holy See how to Tango!

    They’ve been dancing as fast as they can since the abuse scandal broke.

  41. d.f.manno says

    @unclefrogy (#38)

    for a minute I thought there might be chance that they would pick a Latin American who was a proponent “liberation theology” to be the next pope

    Was never going to happen. Ratzinger, as JPII’s head of what used to be called the Holy Inquisition, purged the Latin American clergy of anyone even suspected of supporting liberation theology. Priests were ordered not to speak or write on the subject, censured, suspended from teaching posts or even defrocked. Seminaries and Catholic theology schools were barred from teaching it.

  42. robro says

    @41 mathema “@25 Nope, he only got as far as water into wine.” Isn’t that better than turning it into blood? The Church could pay off it’s legal costs with the money they would making turning water into wine and selling it.

  43. cyberCMDR says

    A commentor named Peeonyou submitted this regarding the story:

    The Pope dies and, naturally, goes to heaven. He’s met by the reception committee and, after a whirlwind tour is told that he can enjoy any of the myriad recreations available.
    He decides that he wants to read all of the ancient original text of the Holy Scriptures, and spends the next eon or so learning the languages. After becoming a linguistics master, he sits down in the library and begins to pore over every version of the Bible, working back from the most recent “Easy Reading” to the original script.
    All of a sudden there is a scream in the library. The angels come running to him, only to find the Pope huddled in a chair, crying to himself, and muttering, “An ‘R’! They left out the ‘R’”.
    God takes him aside, offering comfort and asks him what the problem is. After collecting his wits, the Pope sobs again, “It’s the letter ‘R’… the word was supposed to be CELEBRATE.”

  44. says

    Okay, he’s the first Jesuit. That’s a little surprising, but Jesuits do have a long history of teaching future heretics and freethinkers (as noted by kevinv in #5), so I see it as a slightly positive factor. More surprising to me, however, is the name. Bergoglio chose a new papal name and will be Francis I. For the second time in my life a pope has chosen an original name. Albino Luciani didn’t last long enough to make an impression as John Paul I (the first double name ever), so that one doesn’t count for much. Perhaps there’s no significance in it, but the selection of a #1 name is a definite departure from traditional practice and might make a few people in the Curia just a bit nervous. We’ll see if he lasts more than a month.

  45. David Marjanović says

    Interestingly, the progressively-minded Catholics of my acquaintance are trumpeting this as good news.

    Because he’s a Jesuit (thus expected to be intellectual all the way deep into science), and maybe because he allows contraception to prevent infection.

    I just told my progressively-minded Catholic mom, who always hopes for change, that she’s still going to hell.

    I’d been under the impression that just about all of the other orders seriously distrust the Jesuits (for rather good historical reasons), and that they would reliably unite against all such aspiring for the top job.

    Most cardinals don’t belong to an order!

    la la même merde vieux

    La même vielle merde. There are a few adjectives that go before the noun in French.

    Unless I see him changing the Church’s stance on the whole pro-child rape protection and anti-contraception, anti-choice, and gay bigotry

    Nope. On the last two points, being pro-choice is a “culture of death”, and homosexuality is demonic and comes straight from the “Father of Lies”. *nodnod*

    A transparent ploy to get the Hispanic vote.

    Thread won!

    Sternere sursum. Sternere, ascendit, incipiunt pila, venatus.

    …I’m not sure what you’re trying to say.

    So, as near as I can tell, the RCC just traded someone who was conscripted by the Nazis as a kid to one who collaborated with a junta as an adult.

    Bingo!!!

    To be fair, though, the following appeared in the Wikipedia article since I checked last time:

    “However, after the priests’ imprisonment, Bergoglio worked behind the scenes for their release; his intercession with dictator Jorge Rafael Videla on their behalf may have saved their lives.[21] In 2010, Bergoglio told biographer Sergio Rubin that he often sheltered people from the dictatorship on church property, and on one occasion gave his identity papers to a man who looked like him, to enable the recipient to flee Argentina.[22]”

    If there ever was a time for a [citation needed] tag…

    What are you talking about? It comes with a citation, currently number 35: “Goñi, Uki (July 15, 2010). Defying Church, Argentina Legalizes Gay Marriage. Retrieved March 13, 2013.”

    Actual WWII era German Nazis like The Zinger

    How often do I need to repeat this? When he was a kid, it was required by law to join the Hitler Youth. Before the war was over, he had already decided that, yes, he was on the right, but conservative, not National Socialist. The whole “you must obey God more than men” stuff.

    I didn’t realize that Argentina was such an immigrant country.

    In the early 20th century, there was a saying that the Argentinians are Italians who speak Spanish and believe they’re English. (Argentina was comparatively rich.)

  46. David Marjanović says

    Perhaps there’s no significance in it, but the selection of a #1 name is a definite departure from traditional practice and might make a few people in the Curia just a bit nervous.

    Francis Xavier is one of the two co-founders of the Jesuits, so it really had to be expected.

    Here’s a nice photo of this dear old gentleman giving communion to the dictator, torturer and mass-murderer Jorge Videla.

    Oh, niiiiiiiiiice.

  47. Abdul Alhazred says

    So “dirty war” Jorge Videla gets communion but not Nancy Pelosi?

    Because it’s OK to kill commies (*very* broadly defined) but fetuses are people too?

  48. What a Maroon, el papa ateo says

    I wonder if he isn’t naming himself after a different Francisco.

    In any case, I will hereinafter refer to him as el papa Paco.

  49. What a Maroon, el papa ateo says

    @25 Nope, he only got as far as water into wine.

    Bah. Any fool can turn water into wine. All it takes is grapes and time.

    It takes a true chemist to turn wine into blood.

  50. robro says

    David Marjanović @ 62:

    “However, after the priests’ imprisonment, Bergoglio worked behind the scenes for their release…”

    It’s perhaps not surprising that he went out of his way to rescue priests. That he did so for other people suggests a modicum of humanity, hopefully, but you have to wonder who those other people were, what the circumstances might have been, and how things worked out for them.

    When [Ratzinger] was a kid, it was required by law to join the Hitler Youth. Before the war was over, he had already decided that, yes, he was on the right, but conservative, not National Socialist.

    Perhaps he was required to join and perhaps some time “before the war was over” he decided he wasn’t a Nazi, but it’s not a stretch to think that his experience would have shaped his conservatism. Also, might be careful buying the biography of an obscure person living through that…very easy to “correct” the old tales. In fact, it was a common joke in the 50s that by the end of the war there were no Nazis in Germany, and never had been.

  51. Ichthyic says

    Wow. The Boston Globe article is positively fawning.

    not entirely…

    ‘‘Bergoglio has a very cowardly attitude when it comes to something so terrible as the theft of babies. He says he didn’t know anything about it until 1985,’’ said the baby’s aunt, Estela de la Cuadra, whose mother Alicia co-founded the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo in 1977 in hopes of identifying these babies. ‘‘He doesn’t face this reality and it doesn’t bother him. The question is how to save his name, save himself. But he can’t keep these allegations from reaching the public. The people know how he is.’’

  52. robster says

    The gaggle of media at the Vatican are all behaving like the announcement of a new pope is in some way actually important. They make noises like the old tart is “leader” of 1.2 billion godbot catholics. Not true, of that amount about very few go to church any more than xmas and zombie jesus day, the bulk of them seem to disapprove of the dogma trotted out about sex, contaception, gay marriage etc and they don’t really believe they’re eating and drinking tasty bits of the baby jesus at church for Sunday brunch. Catholics these days seem very casual about their religion, thus making whatever the new pope has to say, about as important as what the Dali Lama has to say about betting on the horses.

  53. NitricAcid says

    It takes a true chemist to turn wine into blood.

    Not really- it takes a digestive system, a liver and a few other organs. Drink the wine, some of it becomes blood, and some of it becomes urine.

  54. rogerfirth says

    and does not encourage women to touch his penis.

    “Women” being the operative word.

  55. Rip Steakface says

    I wonder what sort of test the Catholic Church has to prove its priests are virgins. No one is likely to care if Father Joe, your local parish priest who will never reach high office in the church, fibbed about not having sex. It’s quite another thing if someone pops out of the woodwork claiming they did the deed with one of the bigwigs.

    Apparently, it’s not that big of a thing, at least not in the past. The most recent one confirmed to be sexually active while pope was our old buddy Rodrigo Borgia (Alexander VI), and the most recently accused was Julius III, about fifty years after Borgia.

    For those who don’t get it, Rodrigo Borgia was the villain of Assassin’s Creed II, a truly well-made video game.

  56. Christoph Burschka says

    Rumor has it that he’s conservative, hates that contraception and gay marriage crap, believes he has a magic spiritual hotline to the lord of the universe who is named Jesus, and is not — I repeat, is not — scientifically minded or an atheist.

    In an even more surprising turn of events, I have heard that he is Catholic.

  57. jonmilne says

    And predictably, I’ve gotten people on FB railing against the notion that he’s remotely homophobic, purely because of his culture. Course, what they miss is that citing a religious text as reason to hate gays justifies said homophobic label. Homophobia is something people are taught, not born with, and it is no more acceptable to teach that you should hate gay people than you should hate blacks, women, or even men with long hair. It’s much in the same way that I will call a Muslim sexist for requiring a woman to wear a hijab, burka, or any other garment that hides them from view unless they were asking to be raped. Culture doesn’t mean a damn thing, especially if it has a religious connotation to it, otherwise by their standards atheists and Christians are perfectly acceptable to kill according to Iranian law, gays are acceptable to kill in African countries (I won’t begin to discuss genital mutilation of women, or condoms), and child prostitution and human trafficking is hunky dori in whatever country where it continues.

    I lack confidence in people who straight from the get go spout hate. In fact from what I read, he would have received the nomination last time around were it not for Ratzinger. He’s popular because he appeals to conservatives, and if American politics have demonstrated anything that papal politics could learn from, is the world is gradually becoming more progressive. Yeah, the cardinals, pope, etc can stick to the old time religion, but if they don’t conform to the rest of the world, the world will leave the Catholicism behind. The Church is already hemorrhaging members, and unless they can retain their base and expand it, they will eventually, perhaps in a hundred years, go the way of the Quakers, or whatever religion that died off .

  58. jonmilne says

    By the way, doesn’t it also say something major about the Vatican that they’ve ended up having to plump for the guy who wasn’t apparently as good as the other guy the last time they had a conclave eight years ago? Sorta reminds me of the Republican Party in 2008 and 2012, come to think it.

    Then again, I don’t think the Vatican had much choice. Take a good look at who the “front-runners” supposedly were in this article: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-21657407 , a common theme in the “Weaknesses” for each of those candidates was that they either lacked presence or charisma, hadn’t held key positions, were seen as too much of a continuation of Ratzinger, hadn’t been successful with preventing stuff in their own countries, didn’t have key alliances, or just were generally seen as not major enough to hold the position. Since Bergoglio does at least seem to apparently satisfy a good chunk of these, I guess he was seen as the only guy who is “ready”, so to speak.

    Course, this doesn’t change the fact of their insanity in choosing a guy who is 76, already older than all the supposed front-runners. You’d think the Vatican, in the face of Ratzinger’s resignation, would have recognised the need for a Pope who could serve in the long time, as opposed to Francis who will surely amount to nothing more than a very short term Pope. I genuinely would not be surprised whatsoever if he becomes the shortest reigning Pope in the last 400 years and ends up beating Pope John Paul I’s record for shortest reigning modern times Pope, which currently stands at 33 days. For those who are interested, here’s the list of shortest reigning Popes: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_10_shortest-reigning_popes#Shortest-reigning_popes . Urban VII at 13 days is the guy to beat for the “official” record.

  59. Azuma Hazuki says

    Sometimes it seems like the cardinals are trying to destroy the papacy from the inside out. I really have to wonder if it isn’t self-destructing.

    And I’d be very interested in hearing from more “maverick” voices from within the institution. There are some really weird ones, like Gino Concetti in late 1996 saying in the Osservatore Romano that the church no longer forbids dialog with the dead (?) due to advances in its understanding of the paranormal (?!).

    Now if that one is based on anything in reality I’d love to hear more of it. It would do a lot to sweep away all the hellfire and brimstone…which is precisely why we’ll never hear more of it!

  60. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    @jonmilne

    By the way, doesn’t it also say something major about the Vatican that they’ve ended up having to plump for the guy who wasn’t apparently as good as the other guy the last time they had a conclave eight years ago?

    Oh, they just thought he was too young and inexperienced last time.

  61. Ogvorbis says

    Oh, they just thought he was too young and inexperienced last time.

    Well, the important experience (standing up to with right wing fascists) was back in the 1970s and 1980s, so he was definitely not inexperienced.

  62. says

    I didn’t realize that Argentina was such an immigrant country.

    It’s is home to one of the few Welsh colonies, Y Wladychfa, with a few thousand Welsh-speaking Patagonians.

    It lead to some poignant moments in the South Atlantic War, when squaddies of the Welsh Guards discovered they were killing Spanish-speaking lads with surnames like Evans and Jones on the other side.

  63. thumper1990 says

    @leebrimmiecombe-wood

    *blinks* There are Welsh immigrants in Argentina? Huh. Learn something new every day.

  64. thumper1990 says

    @cyberCMDR #58

    A commentor named Peeonyou submitted this regarding the story:

    The Pope dies and, naturally, goes to heaven. He’s met by the reception committee and, after a whirlwind tour is told that he can enjoy any of the myriad recreations available.
    He decides that he wants to read all of the ancient original text of the Holy Scriptures, and spends the next eon or so learning the languages. After becoming a linguistics master, he sits down in the library and begins to pore over every version of the Bible, working back from the most recent “Easy Reading” to the original script.
    All of a sudden there is a scream in the library. The angels come running to him, only to find the Pope huddled in a chair, crying to himself, and muttering, “An ‘R’! They left out the ‘R’”.
    God takes him aside, offering comfort and asks him what the problem is. After collecting his wits, the Pope sobs again, “It’s the letter ‘R’… the word was supposed to be CELEBRATE.”

    Clearly Peeonyou can’t spell “Celibate”, but that’s still pretty funny :)

  65. Ichthyic says

    Picture to prove it.

    uh, I think you need to change the privacy access to your skydrive files, if that’s even possible.

    asks for a login.

  66. Ichthyic says

    By the way, doesn’t it also say something major about the Vatican that they’ve ended up having to plump for the guy who wasn’t apparently as good as the other guy the last time they had a conclave eight years ago? Sorta reminds me of the Republican Party in 2008 and 2012, come to think it.

    they just want to make sure there is never anything like Vatican II ever again.

    oh wait, you’re right… that IS like the current GoP party.

    carry on.

  67. says

    I’m curious about one thing: is the old pope still infallible? Is that even possible, what with the new pope being infallible? What if they disagree? Can there be more than one infallible person?
    Or does the former pope lose his infallibility? Does it fade gradually? And if so, wouldn’t that suck for him, in a really depressing Flowers-For-Algernon sort of way?
    We’re entering uncharted theological territory here.

  68. says

    You shouldn’t be confused. The pope is only infallible when he’s speaking ex cathedra, in a formal statement for the faithful. He’s not infallible when he’s arguing about whether MacOS or Windows are better.

    Since the old pope will no longer be the formal spokesman for the church, he’ll no longer have an opportunity to be infallible.

  69. David Marjanović says

    Perhaps he was required to join and perhaps some time “before the war was over” he decided he wasn’t a Nazi, but it’s not a stretch to think that his experience would have shaped his conservatism.

    Uh, how so? What’s so conservative about National Socialism compared to the pre-Vatican-II church?

    Also, might be careful buying the biography of an obscure person living through that…very easy to “correct” the old tales. In fact, it was a common joke in the 50s that by the end of the war there were no Nazis in Germany, and never had been.

    Sure. But there are similarly conservative people with similar experiences of the war; my grand-aunt for instance.

    For those who don’t get it, Rodrigo Borgia was the villain of Assassin’s Creed II, a truly well-made video game.

    Internet won.