Thursday, 2 February 2012

Giles & George

Canon Giles Fraser, at the moment the left's favourite liberal clergyman, has attacked former Archbishop of Canterbury, George Carey, for defending some of the Coalition Government's welfare reforms. [Read the report here]
Now, Anglo-Catholics have no cause to think particularly warmly of Lord Carey
[I wish 'retired' Anglican bishops wouldn't assume secular titles; it gives a false sense of their priorities] after his disastrous role in actively supporting the ordination of women and contributing massively to the state in which the Church of England now finds itself, even perhaps indirectly to the current prominence of latitudinarian ideologues such as Canon Fraser. Let's put that on one side for a moment.
One might think this highly personal attack is both intemperate and somewhat foolishly cavalier with the facts. But the reason behind the vicious torrent of invective is that there is, of course, only one permissible way, according to the political left and their fellow-travellers in the ecclesiastical establishment, for society to care for the economically and socially disadvantaged, and that is through an unreformed, inefficient, bureaucratically top-heavy state benefits system which helps perpetuate the very poverty and cultural deprivation they claim to hate so much.

Merely to scream 'superannuated Thatcherite!' at someone who disagrees with you may pass for argument at The Guardian (or Church House, for all I know) but it's merely childish, cheap and vulgar abuse. If the clergy venture into politics (as from time to time they must), they should at least try to be grown-ups and engage with the issues. One may legitimately disagree with him, but that is at least what Lord Carey is trying to do.

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