I cannot encourage the National Review enough to continue to compare Pope Francis to Benito Mussolini and Juan Perón. It would make me ecstatic if that magazine would finally drop the pretense that they are the more-Catholic-than-thou moral arbiter of American politics and just make open war on the Holy See.

They really did think that the papacy would be controlled by conservatives forever, although the demographic changes in the makeup of Catholicism pretty much guaranteed that they would lose their grip sooner rather than later. Most of the growth in the Church is below the equator and there aren’t too many people below the equator who look at the world like white European missionaries and colonialists.

Frankly, the conservative Catholics at the notoriously racist National Revlew are just lucky that the cardinals selected a white pope. I cannot even imagine how much worse their sense of dislocation and loss would be if the pope was from Zimbabwe.

Still, most Catholics respect the hierarchical structure of the Church and won’t openly criticize Pope Francis. They have the good sense not to compare him to fascist dictators.

Because everyone knows that only fascists ever criticize the excesses of capitalism or believe in climate change.

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