Blogs > Cliopatria > Picking a Pope

Apr 4, 2005 10:12 pm


Picking a Pope



From what I am learning about the selection of a Pope, it would appear that the process is quite similar to our selection of presidents.

In the early 19th century!

It's not very democratic, but at least it results in the selection of a leader on the basis of his resume, the interests of the institution he serves, and his overall philosophy and agenda.

We used to elect presidents this way. Party bosses convening at a conclave (aka: a political convention) and selected a leader from among the people they knew.

One didn't always get a leader who was able or visionary. But at least the process was rational--unlike the process we currently employ which can put a senator with just 5 years experience as a leader in serious contention for a nomination (Edwards). Or which can emphasize to the exclusion of most else soundbites and hair.

Ah, but the Catholic Church isn't a democracy and America is.

All hail democracy!

I'm kidding in my sarcasm. All should hail democracy. But we should also recognize its limits.

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