Bannon Before the Fame

Dispatches continues to link to articles about Steve Bannon since the radical left wing continues to try and smear him. Here’s another one — this is Kathryn Jean Lopez writing at The Stream:

I used to host a radio show with Steve Bannon. Yes, that Steve Bannon.

It was a Catholic radio show, and we talked about life and faith and how you integrate the two. It aired weekly over the course of a number of months in 2012, and I do remember we had one political show around Election Day, in which we talked with Steve’s friend Pat Caddell (formerly of the Jimmy Carter White House) about Catholics and the political culture of both parties.

“Surreal” would seem the appropriate word as I’ve watched an array of successive news stories and commentaries about Bannon, who has become the “Darth Vader” figure of the Donald Trump administration. As one young editor in the National Review office observed to me, it seems as if Bannon couldn’t do anything at this point that wouldn’t be viewed as sinister.

The most pernicious development in this narrative is an idea recently presented in the New York Times that he’s coordinating with conservatives in the Vatican to thwart Pope Francis.

I think to take an honest look at both the American political scene and the Catholic Church is to see decades of disarray. Scandal. Confusion. Something less than courage and clarity. The good works, solid faith and stories of self-sacrificial love tend to get overshadowed by all of this.

When everything seems broken to a whole lot of people, anything but the status quo seems a very attractive alternative. And so Donald Trump was elected. Before that, a pope resigned and something new — a South American with radical ideas about love and duty to God — came on the scene. Pope Francis repeatedly talks about mercy and forgiveness, and I hope his message is resonating with people who wouldn’t otherwise give organized religion a second glance.

Read more: The Stream