Papal ghostwriter apparently copied his own work into Amoris Laetitia

Papal ghostwriter apparently copied his own work into Amoris Laetitia

[We have a conundrum: A ghostwriter plagiarizes himself for a work that in itself is plagiarism by the supposed author. Maybe Spock can comment on the situation.]

Catholic World News – January 16, 2017

Sections of Amoris Laetitia are copied from an essay written more than 20 years ago by a close associate of Pope Francis, a Catholic University professor has revealed.

Writing in Crux, Michael Pakaluk shows that a footnote in the controversial Chapter 8 of Amoris Laetitia, and other passages from the papal document, are drawn almost verbatim from an article published in 1995 by Archbishop Victor Manuel Fernandez [aka Tucho (for “Touchy” or “Kissy” because of his book Heal Me With Your Mouth: The Art of Kissing?) – AQ moderator Tom]. Since the Argentine archbishop is known to be an adviser to the Pope, and is believed to have drafted the encyclical Laudato Si’, it seems most likely that Archbishop Fernandez also helped to draft Amoris Laetitia, and incorporated some of his own previous work into the document.

The use of material from an earlier essay raises new questions about the papal document, Pakaluk observes. Are the passages in question the teaching of the magisterium, or the thoughts of Archbishop Fernandez? Has the archbishop deliberately exploited his position to give his ideas—which were controversial at the time of their first appearance, and contain at least one grossly inaccurate quotation from St. Thomas Aquinas—the stamp of papal approval? And has Archbishop Fernandez needlessly embarrassed the Pontiff by using his own words. As Pakaluk observes, “In secular contexts, a ghostwriter who exposed the author he was serving to charges of plagiarism would be dismissed as reckless.”

Reference: Ethicist says ghostwriter’s role in ‘Amoris’ is troubling (Crux)

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4 comments on “Papal ghostwriter apparently copied his own work into Amoris Laetitia

  1. Küng Fu: Modernism the Legend Continues

    Kwai Chang: I am confused, Master. Why would a papal ghostwriter copy his own work into a modernist papal encyclical?

    Master Po: Who can know the ways of the cycle of karma, Grasshopper?
    Perhaps it is a way to advertise for more work.

    Kwai Chang: Perhaps we should ask Mister Spock.

    Master Po: Perhaps you are right. A Vulcan mind from an alien planet might be better prepared to understand the dialectic of modernism.

    Captain Kirk: Mister Spock! A papal ghostwriter copying his own work into Amoris Laetitia….analyze using your usual superior Vulcan logic which we no longer call “superior” in order to avoid being accused of excessive rigidity and neo-Pelagian triumphalism by modernists and liberals suffering from low self-esteem issues.

    Spock: Fascinating, Captain. If we apply Occam’s Razor in order to search for the simplest explanation there are a few possibilities. It is possible that the ghostwriter is so impressed with his own reasoning that he wishes to elevate it to pontifical status. You are familiar with the myth of Narcissus, are you not, Captain?

    Captain Kirk: From Classical Mythology?

    Spock: Affirmative, Captain.

    Captain Kirk: Did you really need to ask that question, Spock?

    Doctor Bones McCoy Careful, Jim!

    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Oh, yes, pride and vanity are very strong motivations in epistolary authorship.

    Hans Küng: I vould like to address that.
    But I would also like to issue a microaggression warning….

    Reverend Neuhaus: That’s my opening….

    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: We should address the grossly inaccurate quotation from St. Thomas Aquinas….

    Father Copleston, S.J.: That will give us time to reconstruct the hermeneutics of the thesis along Thomistic lines. As Father Gannon used to say, everyone will get their turn in the Aristotelian revival of the Ratio Studiorum….

    Prof. Alasdair MacIntyre: As long as we swing back to virtue, emotivism, and the foundations of modern ethics in a way which addresses the status of reason and epistemology in modernity….

    Kwai Chang: Is this what you mean by the flow of the Tao, Master?

    Master Po: When the caterpillar crosses the road we may find the answer, Grasshopper. Then, in time, as the cycle of karma and samsara evolves, you will snatch the pebble from my hand.

    Professor Derrida: Here Master Po is subverting the discourse.

    Carol Brady: What are you reading, Mike?

  2. Stupidity and incompetence reign supreme at the Vatican. Now I see why he gave away copies of Amoris Laetitia to Terrorist groups when they opened their embassy in the Vatican ! The Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas are going to find it great reading 📖 Or kindling around the terror campfires 🔥 as they plot attacks against the West and Israel ! One cannot make this stuff up. Pathetic !

  3. Captain Kirk: Mister Spock! While Master Po and Kwai Chang are contemplating the fate of the caterpillar crossing the road, are there any other explanations for a papal ghostwriter plagiarizing his own work?

    Spock: Affirmative, Captain. Logically, indeed there are.

    Captain Kirk: Like what, for instance?

    Spock: Following Occam’s Razor again, we must consider the simplest possible explanation, Captain. It is possible that the pope himself found the passage to his liking and forgot to footnote the passages with proper documentation methods. On the other hand, perhaps in a moment of zeal the Holy Father wished to pass it off as his own.

    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Oh, that would be a problem.

    Captain Kirk: Well, how can we be certain which explanation is the truth, Mister Spock?

    Spock: We could have recourse to NFL rules and flip a coin, Captain.

    Doctor Bones McCoy: That’s no way to decide a case like this, Jim. A coin toss would never work well in medicine.

    Captain Kirk: Bones is right, Spock. We can’t settle a pontifical plagiarism case with a coin toss.

    Professor Derrida: In the deconstruction of papal hermeneutics the paradox of the coin toss introduces an element of randomness and chance.

    Professor Sartre: Which does call attention to the absurd…

    Kierkegaard: And the Angst it produces…

    Kwai Chang: Perhaps another young ghostwriter deliberately planted the passage without footnote documentation in order to subvert and sabotage the pope’s encyclical.

    Mr. Roarke: Tattoo, would you like to be a papal ghostwriter?

    Tattoo: I could try, Boss.

    Carol Brady: Mike, are you finished reading that book yet?

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