Pope Francis has accomplished something that is truly miraculous in this country: He has managed to bump Barack Obama, Donald Trump, and Hillary Clinton from the spotlight for a brief time.

For that, I am truly grateful.

I have been mulling over my thoughts about the Pope’s American tour and his various statements, and I have come to the conclusion I need to view him like I view my local priest: I will listen politely, avoid getting emotionally attached, and do what my own conscience (after prayerful reflection) dictates.

When I became Catholic in 2010, my sponsor warned me about getting emotionally attached to any priest. Why? Priests tend to move around quite a bit, but every one of them has something to teach you. I must admit, I’m getting quite a lesson in expectation setting and patience.

Pope Francis is the first pontiff installed since I joined the church, so in that way, he is special to me. I must admit, I caught “Francis Fever”. Given his humility and sincerity, it was hard not to be moved.

However, after very learned and respected scientists were thwarted in a respectful attempt to counter the inanity used as the basis for the papal climate change encyclical, my fever chilled considerably. Ashley McGuire, a conservative who is senior fellow with The Catholic Foundation, says she adores the Pope because he “encourages debate”. Frankly, turning a deaf ear to rational scientists with opposing data is the exact opposite.

During his address at the White House, Pope Francis made a very political move — invoking an iconic American (Martin Luther King, Jr.) and pressing his own climate change agenda. And, with that statement, he essentially gave the environmental activists and President Obama the blessing and the “moral authority” to create burdensome regulations that will increase energy costs. The result will be more poverty and more hardship for the very people Pope Francis wants to help.

Dr. Craig D. Idso, Chairman of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, addresses this poor science behind the pontiff’s climate change agenda brilliantly in, “Pope Francis: Before one can know what is moral, he must know what is true”.

This morning, in remarks presented at the White House, Pope Francis commenced his U.S. tour by proclaiming “climate change is a problem that can no longer be left to a future generation,” thereafter complimenting the Obama Administration for the policy prescription it advocates in addressing the issue (i.e., reducing CO2 emissions).

However, as noted in my Federalist piece, neither the Pope’s concerns, nor the Administration’s alarms, over potential global warming are based upon the best available science. The biosphere is not spiraling downward toward planetary Armageddon and policies designed to deal with the subject are, quite frankly, nothing more than a recipe for social and economic disorder and disaster. And in support of this position, our Center is releasing today a massive new report exposing the pathetic house of cards upon which the entire global warming movement is founded — global climate model predictions.

The new report, titled Mathematical Models vs. Real-World Data: Which Best Predicts Earth’s Climatic Future?, presents a thorough and careful scrutiny of hundreds of peer-reviewed scientific publications evaluating the accuracy and capability of climate models to simulate the response of a number of important climatic phenomena to rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations. In short, this treatise provides the proverbial look under the hood of the inner workings of today’s state-of-the-art climate models that provide the basis for both the Pope’s and the Obama Administration’s belief that global warming is a problem and that something must be done about it. And that “look” is not encouraging.

I would argue that, despite his claims of not being a leftist, that Pope Francis at least has a trait common to progressives everywhere: Misguided compassion. Interestingly, misguided compassion was called the “reigning sin of our time” by Mother Angelica, the plucky founder of the EWTN Global Catholic Network.

Catholic author, John Zmirak, covered the topic in his excellent book, “The Bad Catholic’s Guide to the Seven Deadly Sins.” In a nutshell, it is going forward to with actions that enable sin — but convincing yourself that you are doing the right thing anyway, despite evidence to the contrary.

Misguided compassion, as it relates to climate change, is now forcing Americans to live in “energy poverty.”

“EPA regulations such as the new carbon rule are driving prices higher and the next wave of cost increases looms on the horizon (ozone standards in December could be the most expensive in history). “Energy poverty” mounts as the U.S. population grows by over three million people a year. Stories abound for the ongoing lag in U.S. disposable income (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014), and inequality is the worst its been since the “Great Depression.” The purported health benefits of policies that admittedly increase the cost of prerequisite energy such as electricity are dubious because “wealth is health.” Your instinct is right, the best and most measurable benefits for American health center on us having more money.”

Energy poverty isn’t be confined to America, either.

The pontiff is being hailed as the “People’s Pope.” The love and adoration of the crowds is heart-warming, indeed.

But in his role of “Political Pope,” I will give the pontiff the same treatment I gave my very liberal priest when he read Maya Angelou passages during homilies: I will say a mental, “Hail Mary,” and go forward promoting sensible public policy on sound science. I will also fully embrace the beauty, pageantry, and glory of the Holy Mass.


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