Analysis: A Reader’s Guide to McCarrick Report: Beware of Bad Guys, Smoking Guns

It’s taken far too long to get here, with agonizing delays, chaos, confusion, and reversals of fortune along the way, not to mention accusations of fraud and cover-up. Even now that we have a final result, heated arguments over its meaning and legitimacy probably are only beginning. That’s not a summary of the 2020 U.S. election, though it easily could be. The reference instead is to the Vatican’s release today of its long-awaited report on ex-cardinal and ex-priest Theodore McCarrick, promised more than two years ago and finally at hand.

Analysis: Priest Baptism Story Offers Memo for Reformers — Look Before You Leap

Robert K. Merton, a famous American sociologist, was, by all accounts, a smart guy. Among other things, he popularized the expression “law of unintended consequences” to refer to situations when a person does something for one reason, but he or she finds that it produces all sorts of other unexpected results.